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Akanksha In Hinduism

In Hinduism, Akanksha means expectation. In linguistic thought it stands for words in a sentence ‘mutually expecting’ other words with given meaning in the sentence. Akanksha is one of the four conditions for the construction of a sentence that constitutes verbal knowledge. A sentence is generally defined to be a group of words that culminate in, and lead to, a judgement having a certain meaning. Any group of words, however, does not constitute a sentence. To form a sentence, the words in it must be mutually dependent. That is, the words of a sentence must expect or imply one another. This trend continues till the sentence is complete. This mutual expectancy of the words in a sentence is termed as Akanksha. Virtually, in this context, Akanksha is the desire among the listeners to know the other words of sentence when one part of the sentence is known. Akanksha has been considered by the Naiyayikas (practitioners of the Nyaya school of philosophy) as a kind of syntactic need to convey the inter-relations of the constituent words. It has been defined as the inability of a word to convey the meaning of a sentence on account of the absence of some other word or words.

A word in isolation cannot convey a complete thought. It needs a word or words to express its complete meaning. Akanksha consists in a word not being able to convey a complete sense without another word. For instance, the sentence, ‘close the door’ generates a cognition in the person who is so instructed – the word ‘close’ alone or ‘door’ alone will not generate this cognition. For a sentence to be meaningful, it must fulfill the mutual Akanksha (expectancy) of the meanings of the constituent words.