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By Swami Harshananda

Bādhita literally means ‘contradicted’.

A material fallacy is technically called ‘hetvābhāsa’ in the Nyāya school of philosophy. It literally means that a hetu or reason which appears true but is not a valid reason in reality. Generally five hetvābhāsas are listed. Among them ‘bādhita’ is the last.

Consider the sentence "agniranuṣṇatva dravyatvāt", ‘Fire is cold, since it is a substance’. Here anuṣṇatva or coldness is the sādhya (major term) and dravya or substance is the hetu (middle term). The non-existence of something cold and the existence of something hot can be perceived in fire by our sense of touch. So, we have to reject hetu or the middle term, dravyatva (being a substance), as it is bādhita or contradicted by another means of knowledge (here, pratyakṣa or direct perception).


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore