Volume 26, December 2021
Rasāsvāda: A Comparative Approach to Emotion and the Self
This paper explores the philosophy of emotion in classical India. Although some scholars have endeavored to develop a systematic philosophy of emotion based on rasa theory, no serious effort has been made to read the relationship between emotion and the self in light of rasa theory. This exclusion, I argue, is an outcome of a broader presupposition that the 'self' in classical Indian philosophies is outside the scope of emotion. A fresh reading of classical Sanskrit texts finds this premise baseless. With an underlying assumption that emotion and self are inherently linked, this paper explores similarities between the Indian and Chinese approaches.