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Kalatita

Kalatita, also known as kalatyapadistha, or badhita, is the mistimed reason, a technical term denoting a kind of fallacy in an inference.

Anumana (inference) is a distinct source of knowledge. It gives us knowledge about things which are not directly perceived but can be ascertained on the basis of reason. To be a valid source of knowledge, it is necessary that hetu (reason) in an inference must satisfy certain conditions. The conditions can be better understood with the help of an example, “The mountain has fire, because it has moke”. Hetu, smoke, in this case, must be (1) present in the subject, the mountain; (2) be present in all other places similar to the subject (be concomitant), as for example the kitchen hearth (3) it should not be present in any other object where the object to be proved (sadhya), the fire, is not present, as for example the lake; (4) the inferred object, the fire, should not be invalidated by direct perception or a verbal authority; and (5) hetu should not be such that by it an inference of a thing contrary to sadhya takes palce. A hetu which does not satisfy even any one of these conditions is fallacious (hetavabhasa – that which only appears as hetu). There are generally five types of hetvabhasas as recognized by the Nyaya School.

Kalatita, or the mis-timed reason, is a kind in which the reason in the case of an accepted example and the reason in the case to be proved, vary. It is because in the latter case, hetu is not a proper hetu as hetu and sadhya exist in two different moments and are therefore not concomitant, while in the example they are concomitant. They also need to occur simultaneously, as for example, “sound is eternal, because it is manifested, like color, owing to a particular contact,  like the light, being manifested by the contact of stick and a drum, just as color is manifested by the contact of light with an object”. Here the similarity fails because, while color is revealed simultaneously with the contact of light with an object, sound is heard at a moment different from the actual contact of the stick with the drum. Hence hetu is termed as kalatita, or mistimed. Another example of this type of fallacious reason is “Fire is not hot because it is created like a jug.” Here, that fire is hot is proved by perception and hence the reason is invalidated. Though the reason “being created” in the given example may be accepted as concomitant with sadhya of “jug”, the same is not so in the case of the sadhya of “jug”, the same is not so in the case of the sadhya on hand, viz., “not hot” and the given reason, “created”.




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