Bīrūnī, Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad, Alberuni's India (v. 1)

(London :  Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co.,  1910.)



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24                            ALBERUNPS INDIA.

the water tvhich is so acid that vinegar in comparison is
Personal          Now such is the statc of things in India.    I have

the author,   found it vcry hard to work my way into the subject,
although I have a great liking for it, in which respect I
stand quite alone in my time, and although I do not
spare either trouble or money in collecting Sanskrit
books from places where I supposed they were likely
to be found, and in procuring for myself, even from very
remote places, Hindu  scholars who understand them
and are able to teach me.    What scholar, however, has
the same favourable opportunities of studying this sub¬
ject as I have ?    That would be only the case with one
to whom the grace of  God accords,  what it did not
accord to me, a perfectly free disposal of his own doings
and goings ; for it has never fallen to my lot in my own
doings and goings to be perfectly independent, nor to
be invested with sufficient power to dispose and to order
as I thought best.    However,  1 thank God for that
which He has bestowed upon me, and which must be
considered as sufficient for the purpose.
The author       The heathen Greeks, before the rise of Christianity,
intention of held much  the  same  opinions  as the  Hindus* their
(^om^^armg   g^^.jpg^^g(j classcs thought much the same as those of
beoausf'of    the   Hindus;   their   common   people   held   the   same
ncll^^odir   idolatrous  views   as   those   of   the   Hindus.     There-
strictiy*^'*'"  fore I like to confront the theories of the one nation
chaSras with those  of the other  simply on  account of their
w°thThoseof close relationship, not in order to correct them.    For
the Hindus. |.^g^|. ^j^ip]^ ^g  j^q^ ^"^g  truth   (Ic.  the  true   belief   or
monotheism) does not admit of any correction, and all
heathenism, whether Greek or Indian, is in its pith and
marrow one and the same belief, because it is only a
deviation from the truth.    The Greeks, however, had
philosophers who, living in their country, discovered
and worked out for them the elements of science, not of
popular superstition, for it is the object of the upper
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