S.Paramesvaran's The Golden Age of Indian Mathematics PDF

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By S.Paramesvaran

An account of the math component to Ganita-yukti-bhasha of Jyeshthadeva

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Sermon 306, 7. "7 Thus the good love craves is life, and the evil fear shuns is death. The happy life is the life we cannot lose. Life on earth is a living death, mars vitalis, or vita mortalis. It is altogether determined by death; indeed it is more properly called death. 8 For the constant fear that rules it prevents living, unless one equates being alive with being afraid. 9 This basic fear guides all our fears of specific evils. By putting an end to life, death is at the same time the cause of the constant worry of life about itself-the endless concern about its transient happiness-and about life after death.

That the "highest good" on earth is "possessed" in the act of striving for it is, of course, a contradiction in terms. Just as true self-love can be actualized paradoxically only in self-hatred, so "possession" can here only be actualized by oblivion. In longing for and desiring the future, we are liable to forget the present, to leap over it. If the present is altogether filled with desire for the future, man can anticipate a timeless present "where the day neither begins with the end of yesterday, nor is ended by the beginning of tomorrow; it is always today.

Etienne Gilson draws attention to this distinction in The Christian Philosophy of St. Augustine (New York: Random House, 1960), 3 I I n. 40: "On this point, as on many others, Augustine's terminology is rather flexible. " However, Augustine's terminology is more than "flexible," and he usuanyuscs the word diligere for personal love. LOVE AS CRAVING As it takes an object to determine and arouse desire, Augustine defines life itself by what it craves. Life craves the goods occurring in the world, and thus turns itself into one of them only to find out that things (res), if compared to life, are of almost sempiternal permanence.

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