Time and Self in Whitehead, Yi and Zen: A Comparative Study

Dissertation, University of Hawai'i (1998)

The present dissertation is a comparative study on the issues of time and self in Alfred North Whitehead, the Yi Jing in Chinese philosophy, and Zen in Nishida Kitaro and modern Japanese philosophy. By reinterpreting Whitehead's process metaphysics from the perspectives of the above selected Asian traditions, I suggest that, on the one hand, similar to Chinese Yi and Japanese Zen philosophies, Whitehead regards time and self as the holistic experience of self-transformation; however, on the other hand, he overlooks the practical dimension of specific human existence which significantly characterizes the moralistic experience of self-cultivation in the Yi Jing tradition and the religious experience of self-negation in Nishida and the Kyoto school. From this perspective, I further conclude that Whitehead's organismic philosophy can be reconstructed by appropriating the major themes of the Yi theory on time in classical Chinese philosophy and Zen doctrine on self in modern Japanese philosophy. In doing so, the contribution of my work is to develop an original approach to Whitehead through a comparative study on the unity of time and self, which would also contribute to a new dialogue for Chinese Yi and modern Japanese Zen thinking
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Select Bibliography of Works on the Yijing " Since 1985.Richard J. Smith - 2009 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 36 (s1):152-163.

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