As I discuss in this question, by far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy is the Vedanta school. But there are five other Astika or orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy: Purva Mimamsa, Samkhya, Yoga, Vaisheshika, and Nyaya. My question is about the Samkhya school, founded by the sage Kapila. There are three works which are variously claimed to be the oldest surviving work of the Samkhya school: Kapila's Samkhya Sutras, Kapila's Tattva Samasa, and Ishwara Krishna's Samkhya Karika. Of these three, scholars consider the Samkhya Karika to be the oldest; the original defining work of the Samkhya school was composed by Kapila, but scholars believe that work is lost and that the Samkhya Sutras and Tattva Samasa are just later works attributed to Kapila.

My question is, what commentaries on Ishwara Krishna's Samkhya Karika are available in English?

1 Answer 1


These are the commentaries on the Samkhya Karika I've found in English so far:

  1. Gaudapada's Samkhya Karika Bhashya, which you can read here
  2. Vachaspati Mishra's Samkhya Tattva Kaumudi, which you can read here
  3. Narayana Tirtha's Samkhya Chandrika, which you can read here
  4. The Yukti Dipika, an ancient commentary of unknown authorship discovered in the 1930's, which you can read here.
  5. The Suvarna Saptati, another ancient commentary of unknown authorship lost in the original Sanskrit but available in a Chinese translation by the 6th century Buddhist philosopher Paramartha, which you can read here

The two major commentaries that I haven't found in English are Shankara's Jayamangala and the Mathara Vritti, but you can read them in Sanskrit here and here. Unfortunately, they're among the oldest commentaries on the Samkhya Karika, so I'm hoping someone will translate them.

  • Is Jaymangala attributed to Adi Shankaracharya?
    – Pandya
    Commented Oct 30, 2017 at 11:32

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