From Proto-materialism to Materialism: The Indian Scenario

Main Article Content

Ramkrishna Bhattacharya


 Pāyāsi and Ajita Kesakambala in the Buddhist canonical literature and Uddālaka  ruṇi in the Upanisadic literature maybe taken as protomaterialists in the Indian context. The development from the primitive stage to a full-fledged doctrine saw the birth of two distinct materialist systems in the early centuries of the Common Era. They are called bhūtavāda (elementalism) and Lokāyata in the Tamil epic, Maṇimēkalai. These two systems are the representatives of old or Pre-Cārvāka materialism in India. By the eighth century CE we come to hear of the Cārvākas, the last of the materialists, who differed radically from the old schools by admitting the role of inference in however restricted a manner, without dispensing with its materialist fundamentals. The paper traces the growth, course of the development of materialism and enumerates the sources from which much information can be gathered.

Article Details

How to Cite
Bhattacharya, R. (2016). From Proto-materialism to Materialism: The Indian Scenario. Confluence: Journal of World Philosophies, 3. Retrieved from