Dr. T.M.P. Mahadevan was born in 1911 and was educated in Madras. Since his graduation in philosophy, with a brilliant First Class Honors in 1933, been engaged in intensive research and teaching. Several of his works, noted for their width of range and depth of insight, deal with Hindu scriptures and religion in general. In 1948-49 Dr. Mahadevan lectured at Cornell and other American universities on Indian Philosophy. He has participated in several international conferences, including the cultural meeting of the Royal National Foundation at Athens in 1966. He was the General President of the Indian Philosophical Congress held at Nagpur in 1955. He is the Area Secretary of the Union for the Study of Great Religions. After, he became the Director of the Centre of Advanced Study in Philosophy, in the University of Madras. In recognition of his services to the cause of religion, philosophy, and culture at home and abroad, the Government of India gave him the award of Padmabhushan in 1967. Dr. T.M.P. Mahadevan passed way in 1983 at the age of 72.
Indian Philosophy, along with Chinese philosophy, is one of the foremost Eastern traditions of abstract inquiry. Indian philosophy, expressed in the Indo-European language of Sanskrit, comprises many diverse schools of thought and perspectives and includes a substantial body of intellectual debate and argumentation among the various views. Among the main classical schools of Indian thought are the so-called orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy and the Buddhist schools. Indian philosophy also comprises the materialist and skeptical philosophies of Carvaka and the religious schools of Jainism. Classical Indian philosophy extends from approximately 100 BC to AD 1800, which marks the beginning of the modern period. Ancient Indian thought, which is also philosophic in a broader sense, originated as early as 1200 BC and appears in scriptures called Veda. Ancient Indian philosophy also includes the mystical treatises known as Upanishads, early Buddhist writings, and the Sanskrit poem Bhagavad-Gita. Classical Indian philosophy is less concerned with spirituality than ancient thought; rather, it concentrates on questions of how people can know and communicate about everyday affairs. Indian philosophy is extensive, rich, and complex. Scholars analyze not only its significance and its insights, but also its classical teachings about knowledge and language. Meanwhile, the majority of Western students of Indian thought have been drawn to its religious and mystical teachings.
In “Social, Ethical, and Spiritual Values in Indian Philosophy”, Mahadevan sums up philosophy is just one word, values. The knowledge for philosophy ends in the attainment of values. Sorrowless lives, he goes on to describe, are the goals of all the schools of Indian philosophy. It goes beyond logic, and becomes an affair of one’s life.
Self-purification through the development of moral and spiritual qualities is the chief profit gained from the proper performance of duties to society. The individual's perfection is a continuous lifelong process in which all stages are of equal importance. Indian culture generally speaks of four human values; dharma, righteousness; artha, wealth; kama, pleasure; and moksha, liberation or spiritual freedom. Dharma is considered a primary virtue in Indian culture. It sustains individual life as well as society. It is regarded as the highest social value on which is to be based the other two social values of wealth and legitimate pleasures as well as the spiritual value of ultimate freedom, Moksa. “Indian thought does not attempt to suppress the desires and emotions… its purpose is to let them flow within bounds… so one may reach higher levels of experience.” (Mahadevan 155) The subject of morality, in Indian philosophy, is often critiqued by many modern philosophers. However, scriptures called the Upanisads are...