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Summary on the Six Philosophical Systems or Shada Darsana of India

05-JUL-2017 17:56

    The rational investigation of questions about existence, knowledge and ethics is called Philosophy. In other word, it is a belief (or system of beliefs) accepted as authoritative by some group or school. Here, we are giving a detailed summary on the Six Philosophical System or Shada Darsan of Indian Philosophy.



    1. It is one of the oldest Indian philosophies.

    2. The term ‘Samkhaya’ means "to reckon, count, enumerate, calculate, deliberate, reason, reasoning by numeric enumeration, relating to number, rational.

    3. It was propounded by an eminent, great sage Kapila.

    4. It is a system of dualistic realism.

    5. It recognised two ultimate eternal realities i.e. ‘Purusha (Spirit)’ and ‘Prakriti (Nature)’.

    6. During embryonic stage, system was atheistic but after the influence of the ‘Yoga System’ it became theistic.

    7. It lost its relevance during the Gupta period because its theism was absorbed by the epics and its categories of Prakrti, Purusa and Gunas were taken over by Vedanta. 

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    1. It is one of the six major ancient Indian philosophies and it was attributed by ‘Patanjali’.

    2. Its methodology is based on a system of logic.


    3. This philosophy envisages that eternal is supreme being and it helps in bringing the association of eternal divine principles or 'prakriti' and 'purusha' which results in the unfolding of the cosmic process.


    1. It was expounded by 'Kanada'.

    2. It was based on the concept that everything in the world is a combination of atoms which remain after material object has been reduced to its smallest part.

    3. Initially, it was an atheistic system but after merger of Nayaya system, it became theistic system.



    1. It was propounded by ‘Gautama’ rishi.

    2. This philosophy believes that the existence of ideas, beliefs, emotions and visions are all dependent on mind.

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    Purva Mimansa


    1. The literal meaning of ‘Purva Minansa’ is ‘critical examination’ or ‘solution of a problem by reflection’.

    2. It was attributed by ‘Jaimini’.

    3. It considers Veda as eternal and unchanging.

    4. According to this philosophy, the world has always existed and is without beginning or end.

    5. It explains the Dharma as a 'virtue', 'morality' or 'duty'.

    Vedanta or Uttara Mimansa


    1. It was expounded by ‘Badaryana’.

    2. The term ‘Vedanta’ means the culmination of the Vedic speculation.

    3. There are two basic text of this system – ‘Vedanta Sutra’ and Brahama Sutra’.

    In the above six philosophies of ancient India accepted all the authority of the Vedas, although their interpretations varied on other points and include theistic, monistic, dualistic and atheistic views. But none of these systems ever attained the status of dogmatic orthodoxy.

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    DISCLAIMER: JPL and its affiliates shall have no liability for any views, thoughts and comments expressed on this article.

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