This book traces the first faltering steps taken in the mathematical theorization of infinity which marks the emergence of modern mathematics. It analyzes the part played by Indian mathematics through the Kerala conduit, which is an important but neglected part of the history of mathematics.
Chapter 8: Changing Perspectives on Indian Mathematics*
Changing Perspectives on Indian Mathematics*
Introduction: Judgements on Indian Mathematics
In the early years of the second millennium ad, the more significant evaluations of Indian mathematics and astronomy were those from the Islamic world. Some, like Said al-Andalusi (1068), claimed them to be of exceptionally high order:
[The Indians] have acquired immense information and reached the zenith in their knowledge of the movements of the stars [astronomy] and the secrets of the skies [astrology] as well as other mathematical studies. After all that, they have surpassed all the other peoples in their knowledge of medical science and the strengths of various drugs, the characteristics of compounds, and the peculiarities of substances. (Andalusi [c.1068] translated by Salem and Kumar 1991: 11–12)
Others like al-Biruni were ...