The category of reason is used in Hindu spirituality and philosophy in different senses. One can discern two broad usages: one, as a faculty of the mind, that is, as an instrument of philosophical reflection and, two, as logic, that is, an instrument of argumentation. There is no exact Sanskrit synonym for the word “reason.” The term buddhi is often used to denote reason as a faculty of the mind, and words like manana and vicāra are used to denote the act of reflection or contemplation. Anumāna is inference; it is one of the six pramāṇas or valid means of knowledge and is accepted by all the six schools of Hindu philosophy (darśana). The word Nyāya, after which is named one of the six schools of Hindu philosophy, means logic. Tarka and yukti are also words used to denote logic. These different words are used to denote different dimensions of reason.
When we talk about reason as understood in Hinduism,...
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