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PREFACE.

I wish to present to my readers the philosophy of Kapila as it has been set forth by his Indian exponent, Iswara Kșishņa. The system of Kapila, called the Sānkhya or Rationalistic, in its original form, and in its theistic development by Patanjali, contains nearly all that India has produced in the department of pure philosophy. Other systems, though classed as philosophic, are mainly devoted to logic and physical science, or to an exposition of the Vedas.

The system of Kapila may be said to have only an historical value, but on this account alone it is interesting as a chapter in the history of the human mind. It is the earliest attempt on record to give an answer, from reason alone, to the mysterious questions which arise in every thoughtful mind about the origin of the world, the nature and relations of man, and his future destiny. It is interesting, also, and instructive to note how often the human mind moves in a circle. The latest German philosophy, the system of Schopenhauer and Von Hartmann, is mainly a reproduction of the philosophic system of Kapila in its materialistic part, presented in a more elaborate form, but on the same fundamental lines. In this respect the human intellect has gone over the same ground that it occupied more than two thousand years ago, but on a more important question it has taken a step in retreat. Kapila recognised fully the existence of a soul in man, forming indeed his proper nature-the absolute Ego of Fichte-distinct from matter and immortal ; but our latest philosophy, both here and in Germany, can see in man only a highly developed physical organisation. “All external things,” says Kapila, “were formed that the soul might know itself and be free." “The study of psychology is vain,” says Schopenhauer, “ for there is no Psyche."

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