Yoga anatomy on Crucial to these debates was the issue of epistemology, the study of knowledge and how we get it. Most yoga schools agreed that we acquire what we call knowledge in three main ways: perception (pratyaksa), inference (anumana) and testimony (sabda), though they disagreed about the status that can be legitimately applied to these sources. The third was the most contentious, with the most brahmanically orthodox accepting its authority (as they wanted scripture to have a status equal to or even superior to that ascribed to perception and inference), and the less orthodox taking a more sceptical stance. Moreover, the terms themselves were used in different ways by different teachers. The Vedantin Sankara, for example, often uses the term perception to refer to scripture – he argues that scripture records the perceptions of the ancient sages and should thus be accorded the same status as one s own direct perception. The Buddha provides us with an excellent example of early philosophical thinking about yogic matters generally and epistemology in particular. His approach is essentially twofold: first he considers a range of positions taken by others on the subject of knowledge and identifies the errors upon which they are built; then he outlines what he considers to be a sound basis for any theory of knowledge. Yoga anatomy 2016.
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