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Secular Sovereign and Artha 

Parthasarathi Banerjee

Welfare is not possible without a sovereign. Welfare is the endurance or stability of the livelihood (or the disposition to livelihood) of the entire human multitude, as is under the sovereign authority, along with the implied endurance of the species of lives and the earth contained under the sovereign. Endurance of lives and livelihoods are necessarily spread over the temporal horizon, and therefore this implies the enabling of the propagation of all life-forms and earth. Both the sovereign and the welfare is defined by the acquiring of an earth possessed by the human multitudes and other life-forms and by its up-keeping (endured livelihood). This is our central argument.

Theories of development, or the actions and rhetorics of development (which we may call development-in-action) do very often either deny or disregard such a supremacy of the sovereign authority in development. To distinguish our hypothesis, we would therefore use the term welfare as defined above. Our demonstration would be to show that the secularization of development is not only misconceived but also that an autonomous development is actually in a certain sense morally purposive. The clock of scientific factuality and causality in this system cannot be maintained against the demands raised by the very construction of science and causality. This theoretical and actual system of development thereby necessarily brings in the purposive morality (which may also be termed evangelization), and by doing so this system intends to bring under its universally evangelizing fold the entire globe. The resurfacing of natural law, of human and community rights, of the rights of the communities to overcome the boundaries dictated by the sovereign, etc. are all part of this common evangelic initiative. We would demonstrate, arguing on only a few points, that such theories cannot either offer the welfare as defined above, or guarantee and envision a truly secular sovereign. Our contention is that our position, which follows Indian theoretical vantage of arthasastra, can offer and guarantee this both.

Therefore we have to speak on the notions and relevances of law (and law-state), and rights. We would argue, though briefly, against it, claiming that both the sovereign and the welfare need not be defined by law (or system of law). Our attempt would be to enlighten the causality inherent in the constitution of sovereignty and the welfare, for and by the multitudes (and the other species and the earth). It may be claimed then that this is superior to the utilitarian formulation by being ‘scientific’ and secular; and certainly our claim is not moralizing, thereby claiming its superiority to various theories of natural law, legal traditions and potentiality-fulfilment (of human individuals). The arguments offered here would therefore have to touch, partially albeit, upon the penal authority (or law) and understanding community — (or civil) societies. We would depend upon a cognitive understanding of the poena (somewhat comparable to danda). Interestingly in our endeavour the individual human figures very prominently, and yet we are able to put aside ‘individual differences’, ‘liberty’, or ‘freedom of the will’, etc. The point is that individual welfare (abhyudaya) is free of ‘moral’ considerations, and can under a proper sovereign act cognitively. This means, and if we define the cognitive as the rational, that given the sovereign and therefore the poena, and also given the fact of individual’s learning through discourses, human actions-for-welfare are causal and we need not depend on the ideas of ‘fall’, akrasia or weaknesses of the will. We argue that the welfare, as defined above (i.e., artha), is possible through a sovereign — (who seeks to win), who therefore is artha wielding the penal, the danda. We claim that this alone is secular, and the other notion of global imperium (of development) cannot properly define a global authority that is both secular and definable for secularized individuals. The contemporary notions of, and attempts at, a global developmental imperium is liable to be both non-secular and penal.

Our arguments do not therefore allow us the constitution of a moralized, penitential and penalizing global authority. Consequently it does not threaten the commonsensical life or culture. This therefore is a secularization of the universal and the welfare, achievable through the sovereign — (who seeks to win).

It is needless to emphasize that in the short span that this present essay is allowed, it is simply not possible to examine satisfactorily the issues raised above. We would therefore limit ourselves to the discussion of only a few points.


Commonsense valuation implies that development is a progress aiming at bringing in more and more people, from multitudes of communities under a common principle. This principle could be considered as that of the brotherhood. Another notion in currency in the Western tradition is to create a stronger state, and thereby to achieve a supremacy over the neighbours in terms of power and prosperity. It is not necessary that these two idea-types should be considered as opposed, and in fact detailed formulations might recognize a unity. This latter, the unity of the two types, in fact constitutes a third principle. To give examples from the past, Thucydides in his Peloponnesian War represented the second strand. "Different states encountered different obstacles to the course of their development" and that led to the succession of wars, defeats and conquests. Aeneas, in Virgil’s epic was concerned with his people alone and, lest he forgot the ordained mission at Carthage, he was led into the hell of the future of his own people. His people could thereby develop themselves and build an empire. The ordained mission was the protection of life and prosperity of its own people and a strong sovereign was indeed necessary for that. Later, this same people following the defeat of their states at the hand of the northerners were told by St. Augustine a common principle — a principle of brotherhood. Augustinian formulation was not directed against the necessity of a sovereign, neither so much against the ‘necessary’ wars but it had aimed at a common and unique spiritual media, one god and unique ethic for the multitudes of Roman people. This was then a synthesis of sovereignty and culture, which was to make possible an imperium over nations, races, civitas and towns, which Dante dreamt, and argued for, much later in his Monarchy. The Augustinian principle is then not a sovereignless principle. The latter, a sovereignless type, possibly could be traced to the Jewish tradition, which remained often without a sovereign. Its strength was in a common principle.

Against the contemporary global standard, the size of population that it involved or of the size of the geographical expanse over which these above ideas and actions took place could indeed appear small. An increase in size as such, without any corresponding change in the principles, would indicate increased information which might lead fabulously to a tower of Babel. It would appear then, and since no conquest has been made over these old principles, that these principles remain valid. Development could be considered either as an expanding extension for the space of varieties of human multitude by bringing them under a unique principle or, at least in enabling a certain people to retain their own principle. None denies the necessarily important question of prosperity of the population. Prosperity is a principle of life and, even if unsaid, it remains supreme. Moreover sovereign is of supreme importance in all the strands of action excepting one.

It may be observed that contemporary notions of development do not present a coherent, rigorous formulation of its agenda. In the absence of the same we may take up development-in-action, that is, as it is being performed. Such a documentation, over that period which we often call modern, of the performance or the acts is indeed what we cognize and what we are concerned with.

In this sense neither population nor its prosperity is the object of development. People act and prosper and development is performed. It is like an autopoeisis, a constructivist undertaking, though our position is sharply different from that. This people, however, is not an amorphous mass but as has been noted above, do have both variabilities and magnitudes. Till recently such variabilities used to be measured by the modernists in terms of lobotomical differences and similar other ‘racial’ markers. Race has been replaced largely by other artifacts recently. Culture, traditional communities or epistemic communities are contemporary artifacts. Race was defined earlier in terms of a cognate structure (i.e., of blood or of lineage), defined materially. The contemporary (racial) culture or the (racial) epistemic communities are symbolic, semiotic — either as defined in the field or defined in a territory (which is either geographic or abstract-communicational).

Before we embark upon these racial constructs in a little more detail, it would not be pointless to consider the issue of the size of the population. While even the Roman state was based upon the notion of citizen and used to conduct census, it was only with the post reformation modern states, which often are called nation states, that quantitative issues turned out to be important. In England, with the Elizabethan reform of poor law by which the state took upon itself the charity-endowment, the controlling interest of state in population became significant. The size of the population as such, albeit owing to many other reasons, became a matter of active state interest. In the beginning, for much of mercantilism, nation was a near equivalent of population and rise in quantity was favoured often by that nation which did not have the same desired quantity. But possibly owing to changes in methods and organizations of production, the later laissez-faire lost interest in the rise in population and the state was to remain detached as it were, not from the issues of population but from its rise. Shortly thereafter it was argued, to begin with Malthus or Wicksell later, that the state’s active containment of population quantity would possibly be desirable. It would be worthwhile to note Heckscher’s observation that mercantilist economics, a division in economics, was made into production, exchange and distribution, where production and exchange were to be run competitively and distribution were to remain in the hands of the state. Quantities of population in the spheres of production and exchange were noted but as legitimate such factors were not only to be determined by the market, (competitively which alone, without the sovereign’s interest, would turn out to be accidental), but also their gross requirements were to fall uninterruptedly. Active quantity, therefore, was to be reduced and made into the accidentally caused and allowed to survive. The state was to provide for the distributive justice, which having been dissociated from the spheres of commutative justice was a reduced minimum. This flotsam population therefore became a burden to the exchequer. It was no longer for the sovereign to look after, and actively promote, the prosperity of its population in its entirety. On the contrary what we see in the twentieth century is often an active bid by the sovereign to enhance accidentally, the risk to livelihood and promotion of such instrumentalities as reduce the quantum.

It has been noted that the Roman state was based upon citizenship which was defined as the negation of aliens. This state was, therefore, based on a variability — a differentiated group of population. Moreover it was a law-state, where citizenry (the various cives) was legally defined and the state defined accordingly, i.e., on both the quantity and differential of a population. It is also worth noticing, while the early state was exclusively based on a select group, defined on blood relation and descent, a social group, the last stages of the empire saw the inclusion into citizenry various other groups, drawn from both other racial and mixed groups. This latter were in general put into various hierarchies, with corresponding rights and privileges. One primary reason for the expansion of the hierarchy of citizens was the enhancement of the collection of taxes. In terms of the legal scope the differentiation in the hierarchy was drawn in the civil sphere — either by denying it such rights altogether, partly or by providing the scope completely. Slaves, drawn from various races, were one large group which, either through manumission (a kind of relief from slavery) or through the offsprings, provided indeed by way of a default scopes of racial intermixing. There were others, such as the original Latinis or the Peregrines in distant occupied parts who had but little scope of overcoming racial differences and, indeed, were often allowed to continue with their own customs, especially in select matters (though, for example, often denying inheritance). The civil law provided for various checks and scopes on acceptable marriages and inheritance, but as explained above, this was primarily meant for a small group or race. State’s actions, primarily legal, were therefore either limited to containing or, at the most, accepting partly a current state of affairs in the differentiated population. In the long history thereafter of various states, or the empires in Europe and adjoining areas, we see either endemic racial wars and conflicts, ‘racial’ or customary civil law or very violent migrations, wars and settlements. Migrated settlement virtually never did lead to what Hobbes defined as ‘conquests’, but it usually attempted to exterminate or displace the original inhabitants — such as had happened with Charlemagne or the Angles and Saxons displacing Celts. Small communities, such as the Jews, had to suffer throughout history. The very feeble attempts at popularizing pilgrimage or the various crusades could not either achieve any result or only led to even bitter and violent racial skirmishes.

Inter-racial or inter-national mixing, therefore, being limited by its spare occurrences, even the law-states or kings and such other states did not have much to do with corresponding legal artifices. The Roman state used to apply ius gentium (natural law, in a certain sense), often in dealings with those who were outside the bounds of civil law, i.e., the others, the Latinis, etc. The ius natural, though mentioned in a few cases, was otherwise indistinguishable from the ius gentium. Possibly, the most important distinction that this system has is its separation of law civil from natural. It appears that this distinction was the result of a law-state as defined on its citizenry. The ius gentium was not for a universal philosophic demand, as to some extent it was with the stoics, or Cicero or as it was to be later with Grotius or even later with Pollock; but the same was for both the maintenance and prosperity of commercial transactions, that too primarily of trade. Moreover, natural law could not have been in existence without sovereigns; and natural right had to have two parties, i.e., no claim to natural right could be made without accepting the reciprocal duties. To an insignificant extent the slaves and otherwise the Latinis, the Peregrines of the empire or others were in the range of this artifact.

Its purpose, that is, of natural law, is therefore not to be confounded with some hypothetical purpose of universalization, a common principle, say, of brotherhood which, as it seems, the state was not directed to. Similarly later with the canon law, though it was to be common (or universal) in matters ecclesiastical, it had its wings clipped by the various civil or common laws, as evidenced, for example, in the murder of Thomas Beckett much later in the cathedral and described by Maitland. As a result, natural law disappeared virtually till its rearrival in the early modern times.


Apparently natural law has the twin bases of universalism. The first basis is provided by the ius gentium and the second basis is provided by an individual. In fact, the two are complementary. Stoic and Augustinian explanation on natural law was that which was beyond the bounds of necessity, and that what could have a free will was to be the individual. Augustine, however, provided a divine prescience on this free will and, therefore, for him the natural was part of an ‘order’ to which the stoics could not make any claim. In this ‘natural order’ then there is no cleavage between the free will and universal order, and it is necessary too. Therefore those who would act for this temporal peace and desert, would also receive the supreme desert. This schema remains even today, for the establishment of a truly universal empire.

A brief discussion on this order of causes seems necessary here. Contemporary debates do in fact seem to be hovering around the twin positions of natural law, represented by the Stoics and Cicero. It is possibly to overemphasize the stoical view that Bloch does not appear to discuss Ciceronian free-will libertarians of our own time. A rather hypostatized natural law doctrines may be found in Augustine first, and then of course in Hobbes. Augustine clearly delineates the three Ciceronian free-willing senses of causality, viz., the fortuitous, the natural and a voluntary. Augustine then can show that the fortuitous is but latent, the natural as of prescience, and he says that there is no efficient cause without the voluntary causes. The point is that he draws a distinguishing line between cause that makes and causes that make and are made. Material causes, therefore according to him, is not efficient because it is virtually of the made-type. Will therefore is a power, which belongs to the stronger man, which as a cause both makes and is made. For Hobbes too in the ‘motions’ of deliberation, consisting of aversions, appetites etc. the last thing that adheres to the action is the will. Will, therefore for Hobbes, is part of an action — it is acting; and willing is not the part of a rational faculty. Augustine too clearly states, that, by failing to act even while willing to act by remaining under the compulsion of a stronger power, does not mean that a separation of free-willing and necessity is necessary. By this inability will’s freedom is not invalidated, but the fact is that the prescience has not endowed the unable will as much power.

It is thus Hobbes’ sovereign is constituted of congealed will, and not of contracts. Hobbes’ contracts of one to another are artificial (and not natural) first; and second such artificials are there only to acknowledge the congealed will — that Will, which alone can act in those things which concern the common peace and safety. This Will, the ‘real’ unity, called as the Leviathan (Psalm. 104.26), by Augustine and by Hobbes — has that power and strength the use of which enables it to form the wills of the multitude by the terror thereof. This construction of Leviathan is both necessary and is a ‘mockery’ of itself thereby. It is a mockery of the evil, of the temptation, and of those wills — such that it is through evil willing (through the united Will) that the good will come forth.

Cause of volition or of voluntary actions, that is the will therefore is by free choice only insofar as it is enabled by the united Will to do so, within its respective realm. Other artificial unions, which are entered into through contracts are by names; and unless, as Hobbes asserts (which later was developed by Mill, in his theory of names) these names are properly defined, the artificial unions, similar to the syllogistic failure, would fail. The Leviathan, the sovereign thus can legitimately suppress all such artificial unions. Natural order of cause, for Hobbes (and to a certain extent for Augustine) requires an external force, which enables it to act. Enabling the action, therefore is through the will, more particularly by the causality of terror and punishment.

The first law of nature for Hobbes is concerning peace, and the second law pertains to forsaking the claims to such rights as are inimical to peace. Justice comes third only and is characterized by the primacy of two other natural laws. Justice comes therefore only as a performance of covenants, entered into through the application of the second law of nature. It has to follow therefore the constitution of a ‘commonwealth’. The performance of covenants has to follow the causality — caused by the Leviathan. Nothing is just or unjust in a state of nature. Locke was rather unable to define clearly and defend his views. Contemporary proponents of Locke (Nozick for example, with a doubtful heritage of Locke) forget easily such Hobbesian explanation of causality; and go ahead instead without a proper theory of names, of causation, of peace and towards such inherently and wilfully, risky artificials as cause, violation of laws of nature, to which ironically and incidentally they swear. Groups, communities, etc. are all artificials, and would be acceptable to the Leviathan only if the syllogism — the defining of names are correct. Such groups cannot be defined by covenants alone, as regards their actions or performances are concerned. Union of will would be necessary. Hobbes’ scheme alone does not give rise to multiplicities of sovereign.

As though, as a result Hobbes gives special importance to bodies, those who can have a definite name, extension, and inertia, etc. Spirit, or the means or the middle term in a syllogism are reduced to bodies. This territorial expression is then combined by Hobbes, especially in his arguments relating to Christian Commonwealth, to a territorial nation — which is based on civil laws and held together by a sovereign. Hence, he can argue that though all the nations of the world are of the prescient omnipotent, yet some are especially His, i.e., some are sacerdotal. Significantly, Hobbes draws upon St. Peter and, St. Paul, for arriving at the notion of a unique body, a unique nation that is Christian as the only rational interpretation and he categorically rejects the spirit, the entire globe of all the nations, which can be of a sacerdotal dominion. Moreover, in his reference to the threefold divisions, regarding the ‘Blessed Saviour’, which are the ‘Radeemer’, the ‘Pastor’ and the ‘eternal King’, he says that these are of three different times, as it were the divisions laid out serially in the history. Therefore the laws that are said to be canonical, are indeed civil, and are actually given the force of law by the civil sovereign for a specific territorial body. Excluding a very small domain of moral laws, the laws are certainly not penitential (in contrast to Kant’s law, which is simply penitential) but are positive, given a force by the sovereign till, and as an intermediate guidance to, the days of judgement. In sharp contrast to this bodily, territorial expression, Augustine and most later exponents argue for a spirit as well. The temporal city and the city of God are created together to pave the way for an imperium that extends beyond territory to all the nations.

One important distinction needs to be noted that while ius gentium did not wish to conquer the gods of the gentiles and of similar other extant groups and remained limited to such international areas of legal actions — it failed in both integrating (or universalizing) the variabilities of human multitudes and in erecting a truly universal empire. Augustinian and also similar later formulations wished to conquer all local ‘Gentillistic’ aberrations (local gods) by the singular ‘supreme’ principle and wanted to erect thereupon an integration of the humanity, differentiated no longer by localities or communities. Distinctions having been effaced, this is but an amorphous mass if all the wills are active for the supreme desert. An uniformity exists but an integration, that is a government (or empire) is both a contradiction and an impossibility. Much later, Bentham while commenting upon the American independence, described this contradiction as a dry moisture or a resplendent darkness.

In order to overcome this impossibility, St. Augustine offered a few formulations,

(a) that the temporal city and the city of god were created together and a natural order (out of law) is possible in which the good alone dwells but it is impossible to have an order where evil dwells.

(b) hence no (free) will is evil beforehand, but is so only following the act of evil,

(c) provided the city of god is necessary (there is a prescience, or ‘supreme’ natural order or end), the evil can be made into a mockery of itself by allowing it to act on its own — which invariably, as it were with the Leviathan, would eliminate evil.

This was therefore a justification of a universal state, the Leviathan. However this Leviathan is not secular. To summarize, in order to universalize a variable population the natural law provides a moral scheme, which erases out all distinctions and provides the population with natural (good). This exercise of the natural will is possible through a Leviathan, a state. This state is a mockery of the evil by the evil itself and cannot be secular.


Mediaeval Europe was concerned with the notion of wholes, and parts, their relative dependencies and hierarchy. This was almost always the expressions of communities, or states vis-a-vis the dilapidated empire. Birth of ‘modern’ states therefore, could not have come through a positive jurisprudence but had to be founded on a ‘revolutionary’ natural law, a revised stoicism. As it appears, the ‘freeing’ of individual had threats from a ecclesiastical order and from the last vestiges of the empire; this ‘free’ individual could not therefore give a call to build up an universal state or an order. Instead it gave rise to states of contingencies and races, of tribes and culture.

This new breed of theories and dogmas dissociated the common origin of the temporal and the city of gods. Histories, cultures and languages or at least a hypothetical state of nature had to be substituted as the ‘beginning’, the ‘origin’. Will was dissociated into reason and morality, supreme good into utility and moral. The means or the necessity of state and society was to be either positive or reasoned. The redefined and reassertive sovereign though, to begin with, was described as a Leviathan (in a description including that of a Christian commonwealth) but soon were to become either the supreme authority on a hierarchy of lesser organic authorities (as in Bodin) or to become essentially limited governments, limited to the theories of double sovereignty, such as in Grotius. Notwithstanding the emergence of (natural) constitutional jurisprudence, as though the states were identical, contingencies or accidents were given a position in the theory of the state (or society). It is therefore only natural that the absence of evil and the necessary Leviathan, which alone virtually endowed the new state with the credit of a seeming secular identity, had to give rise to a state, as though ‘outside in’ (as used by Gierke), bent upon punishing the deviant citizens. The seeming secularism, the apparent dissociation from the church or from the canons had to secure a moral foundation first at the universal level and had to unsecure itself from a strictly defined sovereignty over its own citizens. A true secular credential could not secure a proper foundation of obedience, especially following Hume’s criticism of Hobbes and therefore had to substitute the same with the ‘habit’ or ‘disposition’ of obedience (as in Bentham, Austin or Mill). And since there remains still a ‘ring’ of moral, since the separation of positive and moral laws/norms, as defined, seem unachievable and since law as a system (as in Kelsen) or as a process (as in Wittgenstein or interestingly as it is in Whitehead) assumes once again the old angelic spirit, the ‘belief’ ‘norms’, ‘rules’, processes etc. become the theme with our contemporaries. Quantity of population and its habitual identity were secured by defining the sovereign on a determinate, assignable stock of population (as in Austin).

Over this period many shocks and cracks were to appear and challenge this utilitarian and positivistic aspirations. The English experience was delimited all along by a sense of expediency, by retaining case-laws for example — it was an exercise in continuity. However the Bill of Rights (or Declaration) of Virgina or Pensylvania demanded and clearly demarcated an independent sphere of the sovereignty of the people. In terms of clear constitutional (and therefore universally public) imperatives the French Declaration of the Rights of Man set aside in concrete, a natural sphere of the ‘imprescriptibles’ — of the ‘ante-law’; which otherwise was there in the natural law theories of the modernity. Grotius in fact had conceived of twin-sovereignty, where individuals or collectives could act as the subject of rights, internationally in a large measure independent of the sovereign authority and internally as holding together with the same authority the dominium. As a result the ‘degree’ of liberty that the subjects retain depend upon the concourses and accidents of their specific history. Changes in the forms of state for example cannot take away from the popular subject its rights. This popular subject, according to him, has an active personality which exists alongside the personality of the sovereign ruler, and exercises extensive authority. This provides the state, then, with a divided sovereign, but in terms of such natural rights as are not to be found in the divided governments of Locke or Bentham and Austin. Even following a conquest a sovereign ruler cannot exercise absolute authority over the people who would still enjoy some natural rights. These rights are in the form of power as over property, and the sovereign authority cannot alienate that but can have the right of usufruct.

It is even more important to notice that for Grotius the popular subjects, of differing personalities (i.e., say of different countries) by virtue of their independent rights may join agreements or contrarily the sovereign authorities would be bound amongst themselves, while for example entering into any agreement, by the various holders of popular subjects. Apart from weakening the sovereign authority the most, this scheme assumes several possibly contradictory bases. Such schemes (provided among others by Grotius, Althusius, Bodin, et al.) naturally had a difficulty in defining the universal which existed in its own right, a ‘whole’ which depended on itself. Varieties of collectivistic or corporatist proposals that had been offered were, however, limited by the mere connections, mere reciprocal rights and duties. Collectively it is the People, co-extensive with the sum of its constituent units and yet paradoxically as a single-bearer of the rights of people — as a ‘Subject’ of rights, it is a single unit in itself. Even the common will was then the result of the cooperation of individual wills, rendering inevitably collective or state actions, weak and contingent. The common agreement was on a common civil society, however (theoretically) ungrounded, and necessarily on the theory of representation, such that the procuratorial powers could act based on a weak theory of majority decision. So they proposed in effect, sovereignties of people, of communities, of individuals, or represented persons, of the state, etc. In Grotius, for example the original sovereignty that the community had under the inchoate conditions of primitive society, were still retained. Individuals or collectives, he argued, retained as ‘Subject’ externally the international rights and internally rights pertaining to ‘Subjects’ of state-authority.

It would appear that these spheres of rights have in recent times been defined in terms of both natural law and positively defined as science-claiming legal artifices. Amongst the contemporary natural law proponents mention might be made of Nozick, Rawls, even Dworkin or Viley; amongst the positively defined artifices are many UN or multilateral frameworks or agreements, for example, and amongst the science-claiming legal artifices are, for example, prescriptions/agreements on education, finance, stock/investments etc. In fact much of UN or multilateral frameworks/conventions derive their strength from natural-law, such as for example those on Human rights, such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. A number of these do in fact allow, such as the covenant last mentioned, ‘contacts’ or rights to establish and maintain the community’s ‘own associations’ across borders. Moreover there are ‘imperations’ on the ‘sovereign’ states to emulate certain standards or refrain from doing a few acts. This when coupled with the UN statute, which empowers it to use force on ‘sovereign’ states under specific circumstances, would really leave not much room for a real ‘sovereign’ to act.

It would now be very interesting to compare the world of St. Augustine or of those European preachers, who had cleared all the sacred oak groves from the face of Europe, with the contemporary world which is rather seriously concerned with the protection of species of minorities, ethnic, religious or linguistic on a ground, which is founded on natural law and which appear to value, at least for a moral ground, governance and development. The common-universal shall then have an irresolvable conflict with the rights of an individual, or the rights of a community. These are rights against the sovereign authority, as it was the case with Grotius. It may be noted that ‘minority’ can only be defined in terms of a system of government, based on the notion of citizenry which excludes aliens and on the voting principles. Tocqueville had observed this majority-minority in an America, which in its days of declarations of rights did not have a standing army, a city worthy of mention or any groups of people who were not essentially peasants. The notion of ‘groups’ or ‘group-sovereignty’ or ‘group-morality’ (as for example in Pufendorf) of early-modern period of Europe, though not defined in terms of franchise, were defined against an emergent dogma of individual and society, and therefore against an emergent general sociology. Such a society realigned its historiography and analytical tools in favour of a collective, defined either as classes or as divisions of labour. Grotius did not accept group personality but discussed a contractual collection. However the ‘identity’ of a group (i.e., what early authors defined as ‘personality’), if it is not considered ante-legal, what presumably Tocqueville had understood, then only through positive acts of the sovereign alone can be undone what was created earlier through the governance. If instead, the ‘identity’ is ante-legal or a-temporal, only then such justifying actions on the part of the sovereign be possible which do not belong to the temporal or secular spheres.

Much of contemporary concerns, such as the ‘Negro’ problem to Myrdal, is made into a problem of valuation. Valuation here is an attitude or disposition as Streeten or Myrdal describe it. Disposition or belief is not as fleeting as interest (burdened with ends-means dichotomy), amenable to prescriptions and revisions and, therefore, to a national scheme and yet without any attached claim to a foundation of categories of universal principles. Without going into a rather close scrutiny of this issue, it may be observed that it begins with a fact of variabilities of beliefs, attitudes and respective loci in the population groups, and by transforming valuation into a fact (graded, revisable), this schema tacitly assumes a sovereign of Benthamite-Austinian type that is secured on habits. Prescriptions, revisions and gradations in this schema are not just bloodless ‘rational’ sand they do not take place just as a state of affairs but as part of an active sponsorship of desirable beliefs, attitudes and dispositions by a certain holder of valuation — who by the fact of its commanding a certain valuation is a claimant to sovereignty. Such a claimant is an auctioneer of valuations who begins to act through vouchsafing. It appears also not to be limited by territory or space and valuational imperatives such as are in universal education or suffrage or limiting population growth rate, competition on free-trades — all this become a part of the campaign by the power, a schema of development.

In legal discussions therefore, as Hart has argued, an "assumed common human objective" remains abiding. A purpose, an ought, many of our Western contemporaries have argued, comes as the end in our interpretation and action. Moreover this does not come alone, but as Fullen argues it, abides by as a process, as do also the means. In fact the non-cognitivist criticism of utilitarian law and politics is that the moral, the emotional, was separated from the interpretative/actions. The utilitarian command theory and the habit theory limited cognitive reckoning, by way of primarily curtailing down causality. Later criticisms by the non-cognitivists certainly bring legal, normative or sovereign actions; decisions or fiats much closer to moral, process reality: a process that has a purpose, an end and is shared. This evangelizing process grows out of a limited understanding of cognitivity and causality. In case command is causal, it was held, law and actions are cognitive and rational. Failing which, as it is in interpretations or in discourses or in matters civil, etc., the rational is processual or moral; and such a process or end-game view, we hold, is evangelizing first, and second, an alternative which is cognitive and rational can be offered by the arthasastra view. This Indian theory alone then can have a claim to represent both welfare and rational together.

Such schemes of development, it may be noted, are to be necessarily plural. In the case of a singular belief or valuation, and since it is a fact, it has no end to achieve and therefore will be static. In the case of plural belief-entities alone, sovereignty can be instituted through transforming other ‘classes’ or groups of dispositions, through wars on mass ignorance, poverty or ill disposition towards competitiveness, i.e., on the contemporary paganism. What this wishes to achieve is the freedom of war from space or territory and therefore undermines any territorial sovereignty. It is important to note that the above schema

(a) indeed speaks for a sovereignty, but that is global and not territorial;

(b) this global sovereign, has to define itself only by way of a war or punishment, for example on such things as are ‘cognoscible’ (of Bentham);

(c) cannot justify its instituting itself except by the Institution; otherwise this will have to seek recourse to moral spheres, the sphere of natural law and will have to disclaim the dispositional entities as either non-moral or immoral while claiming itself alone as moral;

(d) can be institutionalized only in bodies; and

(e) cannot define, in the absence of a sovereign, the rationality of its moves. A global schema cannot cease to be either non-secular or warring.

Secular ideals demand that the sovereign is defined unto itself. In fact most definitions in the West, such as by Grotius, Bentham, von Martens or even Hobbs do define sovereignty accordingly, but in varying degrees. It seems that the specific history of West, as for example brought out by Skinner, has given rise to this unfortunate definition of sovereignty and secularism as qualifying or defining it. As we have noted earlier that for example it was not just the crowning of the emperor by the Pope Leo III or on the reverse, the donation of Constantine (the famous forgery) with which this problem originated, but as it seems it was the order, the ecclesiastical which had to be defined this way. Maitland’s observations in this regard on a later period is illuminating. Without going into further details and as remarked upon earlier, it was the attempt to separate out a sphere of the temporal that created a separate problem of morality. In order to alleviate this difficulty somewhat Coke’s formulations on common laws, or the ordinary disposition towards customary laws, for example, was considered positive. It is in this sense, we may presume, that the global sovereign (that it aspires to be) gives credence today to the customs, presentiments, dispositions, rights and even identity of the loci of the same.

Use of the term loci may not be appropriate. A locus is considered sometimes as the residence of a property and sometimes as the continuity of indefinitely close, discrete existents each exhibiting the property. In fact in the latter case there cannot as such be existent distinguished from a property. A person is then a set of beliefs or dispositions as in much of Humean literature, who cannot enter into a state-of-nature hypothetical contract and for whom there cannot be a sovereign except by way of customary or positively entered government. There being no substantive causality, temporality is but successions and regularity. Governments therefore are similar and a sovereign (the abiding absolute) cannot be defined as such, neither can any abiding moral realm nor any abiding good. Governments are divided and balanced. Hobbesian nominalism is not far off from this position, though it provides some remarkable distinctions. Here individuals are name-holders, distinct bodies. Properties are either by way of accidents or by way of marking out fancies (derived through senses). There being nothing in the world as universal but names. Reasoning or reckoning is but putting names into a proper account. Therefore Hobbesian bodies cannot enter into agreement with the sovereign, but have to enter into agreement with one another. The Leviathan is but a body, distinct altogether from all the assignable bodies of the subject.

It is the body of this representer which is unity and as per Hobbes there is no unity in matter civil amongst the represented. Owing to absolute differences or non-identity between names, there cannot be any causality as such. Temporality is then the unity of the representer — which under no circumstances be divided. In short, temporality is the abiding characteristic in a body, segregated from the ecclesiastical of the body. The latter, for Hobbes, is the spirited. Sense, memory, understanding, reason and opinion — what matters in the temporal, in the form of obedience to the sovereign, are not the effects of will but the will of them. This separation of body and spirit, transforms each body into secular. Owing to absolute non-identity the secular sovereign cannot be the result of secular actions of the subject bodies. In a number of other contractual theories, however, bodies are residence of properties. General contract is based on the common properties. Sovereignty can be temporally abiding through such properties as are also temporal. Insofar as there are bodies, characterized by the unidentical, causal actions are possible. Through action results a new body. Temporality too is therefore regenerated, or remains as the abiding. For some, e.g. for Grotius or for Collegialism, through spiritualism also contracts could have been entered into though such congregations would not have sovereignty. Thus sovereignty was abiding by way of the abiding causality, limited by the fact that for some writers there was a social contract (towards a general sociology) and such contracats would have its own temporality. Secular institutions therefore got created through such bodies as were secularized (e.g., the real-nominal, being will dichotomies, etc.) with corresponding consequences, as argued earlier, on external-internal obligations or on practical-moral spheres.

It is time now to look for some suggestive answers or principles. As we have indicated in the beginning, we would take recourse to a very brief discussion on Indian theories on dandaniti (theories of state). The discussion would remain limited to indications alone, not just because of lack of space but primarily because, most theories are lost and the principles do not exist in fact as being practised. Moreover even a very inappropriate knowledge of the tracts makes it hard indeed to borrow upon and use intelligently.


It has been mentioned that welfare, or the realization of artha is not possible without the penal authority, the danda. Reason being that persons are rarely honest by virtue of the beliefs that they are endowed with (or, in another language, rarely honest by virtue of the nature of natural law) and these persons cannot experience the desired world (bhoga) in the absence of the danda (Manu). In fact nothing in this world, including the most insignificant creature, can experience the desired world or can live properly without the danda. In other words, this danda alone enables the (true) appearance of the world (prakasa) possible, and this together with the temporal (the temporal rhythm, the kala), expresses linguistically or not (chandas) this world, through the enabling of experiencing the desired world (bhoga). It is thus, along with chandas, that danda appears. It is therefore prior to the particular appearance, viz. the sovereign, and it is certainly prior to the laws.

All the mobile and immobile earthly formations (the sthavara and the jangama), that are not only apparent but that are also experiencing the respective worlds of desires as though as per the rules or laws (i.e., causally), keep doing the same out of a fear of this danda alone (Manu). Laws, therefore, are as per the injunctions; and there is no need to segregate natural causal laws from the normative or from the ‘ought’ imperatives. However, does that connote a causal relation between the danda, the injunction and the fear which causes the experience of world possible? This significance may now be noted that there in danda does not reside the causality (hetutva) of fear.

According to Madhatithi, danda and the fear are related. It may be recalled that two entities are called related when one entity qualifies the other entity, which is thus qualified. This qualified-qualification is closer to the noun-adjective type, though different from it. A qualified is not exactly a noun. Such a relation gives rise to a qualified cognition, as for example, the cognition of danda relate to fear. This relation however does not express the power of a container (or locus) in containing the related, but is expressive of a qualified cognition. On the contrary, the relation between the danda and fear is expressive of a class (or universal, samanya) being related.

In fact this samanya (class) is signified by a particular qualified (visesya) in such a way that the qualified appears as a qualifier, or as adjectival. As a result on this danda adjective (prakara), as though, the fear gets related and gives rise to a cognition. This cognition in turn is the cause or the actuator of desire which in turn causes action. The cognition alone, in order to cause desire, does not require danda, although danda as a qualified-universal still qualifies this cognition, assuring as it were the unobstructed experience. Fear, as the non-appeared cognition in being related to the adjectival danda, gives rise to that cognition which causes action or experience.

We would like to argue that desire, owing to cognition, has similarity (measure) or action, owing to the desire, has similarity. In the first case, the cognition of the accomplished happy-person appears as the past and the desire or non-appeared happy person is the future. But in the second case both the desire and the action are in the future. We would argue that the noun happy-person remains the same over causation, that is, the object (of cognition) remains the same. The noun here is of a special type being used as though adjectivally. The point is that while a pot in front is directly perceived (therefore cognized), a pot-universal (beyond space and beyond time) is perceived indirectly (alaukika) through an indirect nearness (alaukika pratyasatti) to (or with) the form (rupa) whose designation is universal. It is said that ‘a cognition of self-referring noun appears as an adjective, and being of such property (or attribute), is a relation between the pot-universal and the eye of the beholder. In fact it is not just a pot-universal, but a designator of such an attribute which is adjectival (or being adjective) and such that the latter is similar to the universal. This special relation or nearness (called samanyalaksanapratyasatti) with the pot-universal, while directly perceiving the pot in front, entails also having the same relation with the pot itself (not the universal pot) in the event of a cognition of ‘pot on the floor’. Similar to the cognition of ‘pot on the floor’ is the cognition of ‘happy-person on me (being at various states or times)’. The person therefore has this special relation (samanyalaksanapratyasatti) with the happy-person (which is here a happy-person universal), while having a direct cognition of his having been the accomplished happy-person, or his having the cognition of his future, non-appeared happy-person. It is feasible now to have a cognition of a future object, the non-appeared happy-person or the non-appeared ability to perform the (future) action.

We argue that fear is that state where knowledge has not yet emerged. In a certain sense then absence of knowledge is fear. It is important however to note that this absence is also a real (bhava). Therefore action or bhoga is undertaken, caused either by the desire (which in turn is caused by knowledge) or by the fear (caused by the non-appearance of knowledge). These are, being causal, under a continual metamorphosis (pratiksanaparinama). Danda, the penal, stands apart and does not participate in this causation. It is only related as a samanya-visesya (qualified-universal) to both the qualities of knowledge and fear, to the former as though by way of sustaining it, and to the latter as though by way of restricting it. Following the above argument, it may be observed that even when danda can be internally perceived, that is, directly perceived, it cannot be held to be the cause. The causal chain can be enumerated as per the cognition-desire-action, etc. rule. However when the relatedness of danda is not internally perceived but is inferred from observing the actions or experiences of others, even then this is not held as a causal agent. As a result, danda and the rules or laws are known neither intuitively nor penitentially or morally (as through the attached piety).

The domain of discourse, where a certain inference achieved already by the speaker has to be conveyed to a second person, should require the employment of hetu (a cause, as shown in the discourse) in the fivefold (or tenfold) discourse-structure (mahavakya) (Nyaya-Sutra, and Vatsyayana bhasya on the same). Employment of hetu is therefore necessary only in the case of communicating socially an inference (pararthanuman), by way of showing the similarity or the dissimilarity of the inferrible attribute to the analogy. Hetu (reason, the middle term) has its strength in the invariable concomitance (the vyapti) and in the condition of being an attribute of the subject (paksadharmata). With the help of these two the hetu establishes the sadhya (what is to be proved) — such that hetu is shown as a case of the sadhya. Now in a discourse, which is aimed at elucidating the truth (vadakatha) in establishing the right inference to another, such as in communicating the hypothetical danda having the property of being the hetu (hetuta), the ascertaining of the two delimiters, respectively of the property and of the relation of hetu, is necessary. However danda, shown above as cognizable through the samanya-prattasatti, cannot have the delimiter of property because it is the qualified-universal and therefore cannot have the property of hetu.

We would argue on the contrary that an injunction sentence is self-contained — have a complete meaning (svarasya), while a sentence in an ordinary discourse does not have the same. The sentences of the latter type depend for their meaning on another different validation (pramananantar) which is not required by the vidhi sentences. The speaker in an ordinary discourse arrives at the meaning through another different validation, and to convey the meaning, sentences are used by him. The vidhi sentences do not signify the meaning arrived at through a different validation but as argued above by dint of sentential-instruments (linga) the meaning is signified. The laksana used in such a sentence is not meant for overcoming an alternate validation. As per sentential (or word-sound, used here in the sense of an ordinary discourse) implication, that Devadatta receives/enjoys the fruit-laden villages is valid. However, only when we pay attention to the speaker’s intent or desire we cognize that Devadatta receives these only as an itinerant and that he is to enjoy thereafter the town (to be visited). This latter cognition (illocutionary) owes to another different validation — only following which the ekavakyata (or here, the discourse) is accepted. This ekavakyata is not sentential (or do not preside over ordinary discourse), but it is out of another validation. If the meaning were sentential (i.e., according to the sabdasvabhav — nature of the word-sound), its meaning would have been unvarying and unrelated to the existence or not of another validation. Discourse is delimited by illocution. Similarly, sentences prescribing wealth earning for example, if considered in isolation shall have only materially implied validation (vastuvrttyanusar) — unless these appear as part of an injunction (while the meaning appears sententially). Therefore both discourse and material implication are delimiting, and in such cases actions pertaining to that would be delimited by the obtaining of that (visible) fruit alone. Vidhi sentence coalesces through one sentence, and there too a fruit is obtainable. It may be noted that none of the above have been defined as the indefinable good.

It may be mentioned very briefly that this above contention can also be shown to be true by the application of upadhi. The entity that is wider (vyapaka) than what is sought to be proved (the sadhya) and yet not wider than the hetu is called an upadhi. A hetu vitiated by upadhi cannot draw defensible inferences. Briefly, to take an example, danda allows the manifestation of things or entities and this is not known to happen (or it is not knowable) with the fear; and hence the same is vitiated by upadhi, rendering the hetuta of danda as indefensible. Therefore danda cannot be shown to be the cause of the fear. To sum up briefly, danda is neither known intuitively or morally, nor known to be as the judge who would render justice and penalty — in short, it is not known as that which causes fear. Moreover, danda cannot be inferred and made known, through discourses to the others, as the cause of fear. Any pact with danda is thus imaginary; and neither is it feasible to enter into pact of one with another to create or erect or infer about danda. It is important to note that an absence, as for example, by imagining the absence of pacts of one with another, cannot create a real, viz. the danda; no amount of hypostatization would be of any help in this regard.

In certain tracts of these theories, properties (dharma) are the loci of individuals (dharmi or distincts), and both the properties and individuals are taken into consideration (as true). The individual is distinguished by characteristics of times past, present and future — which in turn are characterized by the state of affairs. Property again is characterized by individuation. Distinction is known through comparison. Again to have the knowledge of the common (property) of a comparable group, the cause of the non-cognition of a comparable individual may be considered as the common property. Therefore given a comparable class or group, we can discern that property of which individuals are but distinctions. Such distinctions are owing to the extensions of other properties. As a result, neither absolute in-identity nor absolute identity are considered as the case, and on the contrary, it is argued that identity (together with) in-identity prevails. The sovereign authority is such a (resident) common property as is common to the whole population, the groups, the powerfuls, etc. and it is also such as through which alone other (extensional) properties of the individuals, groups remain operative. It is therefore subtler, extensionally larger and more powerful than any. It is important to note therefore that neither a state-of-nature nor any agreement or covenant (hypothetically) at that, is indeed needful in explaining the sovereign in this case. In other words, sovereignty inheres in each individual, group or the powerful. This brings us to another very important point, that is a desa (near equivalent of a body or a country) is that extension which is the action (or the same as its fruit) of the sovereignty. A sovereign country, for example, should not therefore be defined on a definite countable (or determinate and assignable) population, nor on a historically limited territory. In fact, the theory does not explain a sovereign as such, but explains the sovereign who seeks to win.


The causal scheme in this theory speaks about the existence of a distinctive-cause (somewhat comparable to the efficient cause) and incidental causes (the nimitta), such that sovereignty is the distinctive cause of the sovereign authority while it is incidental only for the others. The space (desa) over which the sovereign resides, and also the temporal aspect of such residence is related to the causal relation with either the sovereign or with the others etc. It may be recalled however that, there is no causal relation with the fear that goads to action. The sovereign authority is neither identical nor in-identical with the individuals, groups, etc. but is related by identity and in-identity. Therefore in contrast to the absolute in-identity, which reigns supreme in contemporary political dogmas, this Indian theoretical vantage offers something that speaks indeed of a ‘participatory’ sovereign-governance. Moreover contemporary theories cannot explain the hiatus that it left unexplained as either the family, or the various forms of paterfamilias, the respective potestas or power especially as regards its explanation on property (rights), owing to such absolute in-identity. Notwithstanding Sumner Maine’s generalization on laws that speaks so little about sovereignty, here is a theoretical possibility that bridges the breaches between family or groups to the sovereign, or the hiatus between power, property rights of a person and the sovereign. A fundamental cleavage that remains unaddressed in contemporary polity especially as regards its developmental imperatives, notwithstanding the demands that some cooperative movements or some ‘grass roots organizations’ raise, is for a politically aware ‘mass’ an awareness of sovereignty or its duties and imperatives. Awareness smacks of will, spirit or consciousness. The vantage presented above however offers a vigorous formulation of this much needed developmental imperative.

In fact, Arthasastra considers it obligatory on the part of the sovereign to bring prosperity — the sree and artha to the population and the earth contained therein. This is necessary, as explained in one theoretical vantage. It is argued that the entrapment of the self (purusa) is because of the creation (or world, life, the srsti) and it is also said simultaneously that the creation is meant for making freedom from entrapment possible. There is an apparent contradiction. The theory answers that creation alone is not the cause of entrapment but there are other entrapments such as in coma (unconscious state), deep sleep or in pralaya (near equivalent of anarchism, revolution, i.e., a state which cannot be apprehended through sense-organs). If the self is considered to be unentrapped in these states, then the much laboured knowledge is rendered meaningless. However these states are not the states of freedom according to any of the vantages, and therefore this creation is meant for and it alone makes it possible to achieve freedom. This creation (or world) is also the bhoga (the experience) — the satisfaction of dharma (comparable to the principles of conduct and stability), artha and kama (the nearest equivalent is possibly pleasure or desire). Therefore achieving of freedom, though entrapped by these bhoga, is possible through the satisfaction of this and access to a knowledge of it. It should also be noted that morality cannot be a problem here and prosperity and satisfaction of desires in its full bloom remain compatible with knowledge and freedom.

As sense-reports unassisted by mind go haywire, so would also these satisfactions and acquiring of knowledge and freedom without an abiding sovereignty. Reason as argued above, is the most common property and the most extensive and the subtler is characterized in the sovereign. It is important indeed to note that the more extended and the subtler property is not only true and resident of the distinct individual, but also that such a causal relation cannot be explained or should not be compared with a relation of hierarchy or a relation of parts-whole. Without going into any further discussion on that, it may be observed that the Indian theory offers a causal and a relational scheme. Therefore without the sovereign, which ensures the distinctive cause of satisfaction of each and every undertaking (the classes of barga), everything — from the very true knowledge (the word, the anviksiki) to the worldly (the practical) is lost. Each such undertaking has its own distinguishing distinctive-necessity. This supremacy of the danda, the arthasastra and the sovereign should not be confounded with secularism as is done, for example by Dumont. In fact to the Indian debates this notion is irrelevant owing both to the non-existence of the problem as fact or being unproblematic in the construction of theories. However if a comparison is made in terms of the sovereign’s separation from the organization of religion, from the action ensuring that the populace are true to their religious or moral pursuit, from the legal/normative/rule-based actions that ensure the moral sphere or the ends to be achieved, etc. the arthasastra sovereign is truly secular. It is also necessary to notice that in all this artifacts of secularism, hierarchy is the result of a certain ideas and culture (as elaborations of the text) — and livelihood. Hierarchy in Tellenbach or in Dumont is part of tradition (even this term is so Biblical), as for example of the Thomistic; or the primacy as secularism as in Augustine. There is no reason why such questions or categories should be considered universal and hence much of the occidental or orientalist writing on this subject — as for example of those who attempt to give primacy to the dharmasastra in preference to the arthasastra (by quoting Mitaksara and not elaborating upon such others as Medhatithi) as was analysed by Kane, Lingat et al. seem to be nullifying the prasthan of arthasastra. This has been brought out excellently by Yogendranath Bagchi.

Similarly attempts are made to make a general sociology possible for India, by way of theoretically instituting naturally free in-identical individuals, division of labour, symbolic discourse or interaction and as it were a separate general contract for the society. These are evidenced in Renou, Dumont or Srinivas. In fact such studies often fall short of the spirit of revolutionary-making that nature-law and as a consequence (civil) soviety — or, a general sociology took up in Europe. Reason, as we attempted to show in earlier sections, was made into a cause of both personal enlightenment (or cognition) — the associated freedom and the sovereign’s legitimacy of actions. Arthasastra clearly states that the logic of cognition and of danda are separate; danda is not the cause of fear (or actions out of fear). Dharma, while it is not at all religion, is about the cognition and worldly experience. The society of India, if that term can be used, is not part of general sociology but is constituted of dharma — with which danda is not causally related as a samanya. The Indian vantage adumbrated above would not substantiate this approach. In fact the state here is not instituted on citizenry. It is for the sovereign to care for the prosperity of the whole of population unlike as for example Kant’s idea, where the sovereign can enable achieving the Right alone. Arthasastra asks the sovereign categorically on this, and it also asks the sovereign to locate amongst its population those who are angry, avaricious, insulted and afraid such that the sovereign-to-win may satisfy or pacify this lot of its own, and engender a similar lot in the lands of enemy or that of friend-of-enemy. Again, in the description of the sevenfold limbs of a state etc. neither citizen nor quantity of population are mentioned. It is necessary to observe that while for arthasastra the prosperity of the whole of population — the earth (i.e., the land and all other living beings) contained therein is the principal concern, at the same time for the distinctive form or the individuation, viz., the sovereign, the mode of action is free of both the quantity (the countable, assignable, determinate) and the variability of the population. Explanation is, as argued above, based on the theory of causality, property and its locus, or the reverse. As regards variability, two aspects are noteworthy. First, the notion and institution of pindas (or sapinda), pravara and gotra apart from those of jati and sreni. Briefly, pinda is a kin to a cognate, though broader in scope in terms of descent, and is definable in terms of that which helps prosper flesh and blood. Gotra and pravara (which is as though an expansion of gotra) are also another property, whose descents are sagotra or sapravara. Neither of these are definable in terms of cognate or agnate, nor in terms of potestas (power) or inheritance (though in exceptional cases inheritance is applicable). All such properties are of importance in marriage, and conduct, and only sometimes in inheritance. In terms of contemporary debate or of Western practices, the most noteworthy aspect is the superior method by which various ‘natural’ barrier such as blood, race, ethnicity, linguicity or of locality, etc. are overcome, by enabling the distinct individuals to be located variously in the locus of variable properties. It may be noted that the scope of nimitta allow the same distinct varieties of loci. Further, it is not for the sovereign to make conquest over a so-called ‘natural’ multitude through an effacement of the ‘ante’, ‘natural’ properties but it is necessary for the sovereign to enable and allow the same multitude to be resident in the respective desacara, kulacara (the customs and principles of conduct of the desa, clan, etc.) in simultaneity with variable other properties of gotra, etc.

In this theoretical vantage, property is the locus of certain distincts and although this property is characterized by a few such distincts, it is not extensional but on the contrary limited by the temporal order of the appearance and the state of affairs. It would allow however, a feature-wise class (or group) association which is temporally present. Feature’s disappearance would indicate the absence of that feature-associated name. Features are associated with, and defined by, actions. Therefore groups etc. are not temporally abiding and it is the individual’s cognition and action that defines themselves on their own, or as associated with groups. Such groups are exclusively positive and, therefore, not based on any moral, natural or similar reasons. There cannot be thus any universally recurring, temporally abiding features. This lack of extensionality cannot therefore render it a scope for universalization over a countable universe. The proponents never have claimed that. This is in sharp contrast to the tradition of the opponent where ‘virtue’, for example, would be a universal property extendable to all. They say that no one is evil before commiting to an evil act; or everyone is naturally good. Hence justice is not only possible, but as it were the only conceivable foundation of the sovereignty even if it is taken behind ‘a veil of ignorance’, or a loss of certitude or ratiocination, etc. The notion of duty, imperatives and law in the Western tradition is derivable from that. Another progressive shift that is noticeable in that tradition is from ‘right’ as an adjectival quality to ‘right’ as a noun substantive (e.g. Austin’s remark). Trades in rights are then entirely feasible. A right in this case associates with a single name. Extensionality and this shift are strongly related especially, as it seems, through a nominalism. Groups, firms, associations, etc. could then be considered as organizations of rights. To be brief, in this move towards a law of things and contract (as for example in Jhering’s computation), enforceability appeared essential. Law there appears as positive, as though forwarded from customs, with penal portents. Duty appears more and more Ciceronian, as moral and universal or otherwise as part of utilitarian beliefs. It is with this Western scheme in mind that Lingat for example attempts to treat Indian theories and development, such that dharmasastra appears as customary laws. For him law is as positive and enforceable while dharma is about duties, and it is through law-in-action as a transformative force that dharma is turned into a rule of law. This however appears to be wrong. In the classification of theoretical tracts (sastra), for the earlier masters dharmasastra was not a distinct knowledge tract though dandaniti was. According to Vatsyayana (as pointed out by Bagchi) each theoretical tract has a twofold necessity — of gaining knowledge (or tattvas) and reaching the end necessity or the ultimate. Trayi is a theoretical tract, whose necessity is for knowing the dharma (the right and wrong) and the valid cognition, while for dandaniti it is to know when and where and with what might to apply the four instrumentalities as the tattva, and to become sovereign of the world as the ultimate. Therefore for the sovereign this use of four instrumentalities, viz., — sama (encouragement), dana (reward), bheda (differentiation) and danda (threat and punishment) of the individuals characterized by time and state of affairs is of sole importance but not, as is often maintained, that its concern is the judgement or the maintenance of either justice or dharma. Dharma or its abhorrence is the individual’s concern, insofar as such actions are not against the property of sovereignty. The presence of danda ensures both the experiences of fruits of action, viz., the visibility related (drsta) and the invisibly related (adrsta). However individual’s actions and resulting experiences are free of sovereign’s dictate, as well as the dictates of a hypothetical society. As argued earlier, there was never a ‘society’ in the general sociological sense of the term, but there were as it were feature-groups; and therefore neither names the individuals, nor were the individuals bound by either the sovereign or a society, in pursuing and experiencing its actions. This sense of freedom, which is perhaps the loftiest, is Indian. Indian theory thus provides for the true foundation of positive laws individual freedom, and the sovereign who alone can ensure this positive freedom, the welfare. For proper actions the individual is rewarded (or even as an example to others), otherwise differentiated and finally threatened or punished. Sama is therefore the first possible action of the sovereign.

Vrtti (broadly speaking, occupation) is related to Vartasastra, another theoretical tract – whose first objective is to acquire knowledge of production, agriculture, trade, etc. and whose ultimate aim is to acquire wealth-prosperity. It is imperative upon the sovereign to look after the health and stability of the vrttis. The sovereign is thereby not defined by the enforcement of dharma; neither the dharma through law-in-action is transformed into an enforceable law, whereby the sovereign acquires as it were its sovereignty (through enforcement). In short, Indian theory says that state-and-sovereign is not legal, or is not defined legally. For Arthasastra a state is not a law-state. It would in fact be the closest to a development-state. We have already seen how difficult, if not impossible, it is for a law-state to be a developmental state. It may not be improper here to point out that ‘renunciation’ is therefore unrelated to both the general populace and the sovereign. It is only a fact that some orientalists have made dharma and renunciation into something they call ‘Indian’. It is wrong and unfortunate.

It has been pointed out already that there is a sharp difference between the desa and territory. Territory is independent of the sovereignty, and possibly explained and bequeathed by such terms as tradition (Cannan was endowed) — it is therefore the duty of the sovereign to keep to it as such. In the case of desa, as defined earlier, it is defined by the action of the sovereign, more so by the action of the sovereign-to-win. The ultimate for a sovereign is to win over the entirety of the desired earth. Moreover, since the state is no longer a law state as defined by, say, a citizenry or the negation of the aliens, the state remains no longer limited by traditionally endowed territory but it depends on the qualities (gunas) and the desires which a sovereign-to-win would strive for.

In this particular vantage, there are qualities (guna) — ever dynamic — and an unbalance amongst which causes the appearance of the distinct individual. The disappearance of the distinct would mean that there is now an equilibrium. Any state is constituted of six qualities, the details of which may not be elaborated here. These qualities are the variabilities of treaties or pact, such as pact, conflict, etc. The eminence of one quality causes an unbalance and a distinct appearance. These are then qualities, to one of which the actions of the sovereign need to adhere at a certain time such that the sovereign is enabled to achieve a certain constituent (prakrti) either in his own state (who were otherwise turning out against the sovereign) or in the state of his enemy (to the sovereign’s own benefit). In order to apply a certain quality (to the sovereign’s action), the knowledge of the fivefold constituents of any state is necessary. These constituents are amatya (elites, powerfuls, lords, etc.), rastra (state machineries, governors, etc.), durga (defence mechanism, fort, etc.), kosa (finance, exchequer, etc.) and danda (penal authority, power to threat, etc.). Again a sovereign should consider itself as surrounded spatially by twelve other sovereigns (each of whom has five constituents) such as friendly, enemy, enemy’s friend states etc. Sovereign’s actions should therefore be the total of seventy-two prakrtis, (sixty of the twelve surrounding states, and the twelve of his own). Actions from any of the six qualities, of these prakrtis, depend on the time. Qualities cannot be destroyed but the actions cause such an unbalance that a certain prakrti (constituents) is either lost or gained (disappears or reappears). The sovereign is, therefore, to be either a sovereign-to-win or it is lost. Desa is therefore not as given, but as acted upon.

It is as though a series of ceaseless actions — actions of war, conflict, diminution of enemy’s exchequer or danda, or pact etc. that are characteristic of the sovereign. Actions ceased would mean the disappearance of the sovereign. Therefore to achieve the tattvas (the knowledge, etc.), i.e., the artha for the multitudes and the earth contained therein, the sovereign must act on the qualities — that is relentlessly on attritions, pacts, diminutions. In short development cannot be but without war, attritions, pacts or diminutions, etc. This is also what Thucydides had said but unfortunately the reigning theories in the contemporary world — the world that is ravaged most by wars and attritions, do not provide as such, this element and speak for international morality, a free trade or peace that never was or never is. We must look at development or artha in the light of this theory of qualities and action.

Development without a sovereign is impossible. Artha (or danda) is employed for both enabling the achievement of dharma, artha and kama to each individual of the multitude and disabling the threat and varieties of evil (vyasana). The sovereign in such employment should strive for acquiring the unacquired, preserving or maintaining the acquired, growth of the preserved and endowment of the grown-up to the appropriate station or person.

Given this, and before this essay is concluded, it is important to notice that danda or sovereign being non-causally related to the resident of various properties, it gives rise to alternate or possible (vikalpa) formulations of conjugates. Such alternates are possible and allowed but in themselves they are just variations for state of affairs, characterized temporally by their disappearance or appearance. These are not artha. Therefore, the temporal provenance of the sovereign may not mean much. Some say that temporality is that which abides through the drsta (that which is known to bear certain fruit) to the adrsta (whose fruit-bearing relation is not known). However logic, maxim, etc. achieve the same. Those actions that are from the qualities are marked in time (kala), and over the sovereign; kala and danda presides over that. That is called rta, and should not be confounded with justice. True sovereign ensures rta. Such actions ensure the employment of artha (in the above sense) for the multitude and enables the sovereign to acquire the world — the twofold distinct characteristic of dandaniti. An alternate that marked temporally does not satisfy this above is not true. A sovereign in this latter case may as well be substituted for the multitudes.


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