Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online

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(10,179 words)

(Indian Materialism and Skepticism; also known as Cārvāka) The history of materialism in South Asia may be conveniently divided into two periods: preclassical and classical. In the preclassical period, a number of materialists, ethical agnostics, and skeptics appear in various sources, notably King Pāyāsi/Paesi in the Buddhist and Jaina canons, the six heretic teachers (esp. Ajita Keśakambalin) in the Śrāmaṇyaphalasūtra, and Jabāl…

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Franco, Eli, “Lokāyata”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online, Editor-in-Chief Associate Editors Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 27 March 2023 <>
First published online: 2018

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