The concept of ultimate reality has an important role in the metaphysics of religious pluralism. John B. Cobb—a process philosopher in the Whiteheadian tradition—has suggested not only two ultimates, like other process philosophers, but three ultimates: God, creativity, and the cosmos. Based on this, I argue, firstly, that Cobb’s tripartite conception of the ultimate offers greater conceptual resources for inter-religious dialog than, for example, John Hick’s conception of ultimate reality or ‘the Real’. In support of this first claim, I will (...) apply Cobb’s conception of the ultimate to Zen-Buddhism, thus exemplifying the resources of this conception. Secondly, given the conclusion that Cobb’s conception of the ultimate does indeed offer greater conceptual resources, I further explicate how panentheism, understood as the thesis of a transcendent, immanent divine being who is bilaterally related to the world, can be read in terms of Cobb’s conception of the ultimate. I thus argue that panentheism in general inherits and retains many of the conceptual resources of Cobb’s understanding of the ultimate, and can be seen as a preferable position in relation to religious pluralism. Finally, I conclude from the example of Zen-Buddhism that, although Cobb’s conception offers greater resources for engaging in a dialog from a metaphysical point of view, work has to be done to adequately address questions on the level of soteriology. (shrink)
This book guides readers through ten classic works of Asian philosophy. Several major schools of Eastern thought are discussed, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism/Taoism, and Chan/Zen. The author connects the ideas of these schools to those of Western philosophy, thereby making the material accessible to people who are unfamiliar with the cultures and intellectual traditions of Asia. A wide range of important topics are addressed: reality, time, self, knowledge, ethics, human nature, enlightenment, and death.
An intriguing interresonance plays out between various forms of Mahayana Buddhist ontology and Žižek’s dialectical materialism. His disdainful critique of Buddhism is well-known. As a cultural critic, Žižek might be onto something in his contention that Western Buddhism functions as the perfect ideology for late capitalism. As an ontologist, however, he seems to be ambivalent regarding the parallels between the Buddhist Void, to which the Western Buddhists supposedly withdraw, and his elaboration of a new foundation of dialectical materialism. Žižek is (...) one of the few contemporary continental philosophers who do not hesitate to engage Buddhism. My claim is that, notwithstanding his criticism, Žižek is much closer to Mahayana than he thinks. My aim therefore is to demonstrate how this is so. To do this, I will mainly focus on the following forms of Mahayana thought: śūnyatā in the context of Nāgārjuna's the Two-Truth doctrine, Tiantai School of Chinese Buddhist concept of li, and Nishida Kitarō’s philosophy of basho, which was heavily influenced by the Japanese Zen/Pure Land Buddhism. After going through some of the preliminary affinities among Mahayana forms and Žižek in its absolute contradiction, and materialism as the contradictory/paradoxical field conceived as an atheistic religious field, and so on), I will analyse each school of Mahayana mentioned above and point out the parallels between these and Žižek’s own thought. (shrink)
Ac cord ing to the cen tral hy poth e sis of this pa per, late cap i tal ism is ac com pa nied by a pro - found re def i ni tion of the con di tion of the cit i zen. Ac cord ing to Mar shall, cit i zen ship was linked to dis trib u tive equal ity, and the ex is tence of a com - mon cul ture. It..
The theme of our conference is “The Concept of a Person”. One of the most original attitudes of the Buddha towards this problem was to have dissuaded his followers from clinging to the concept of “person”. The word “person” in P li is puggala, which represents in early middle Indian dialect puthakala, a derivation of Sanskrit: prithak.  Puggala means person or man, an individual as opposed to a group. Its equivalent in Sanskrit is pudgala., which means a personal entity (...) or an individual. If there were any unique and permanent substance unifying this personal entity, it would be the self or the soul, attan in Pali and tman in Sanskrit. The self and the person are closely related to each other. I will trace the evolution of these two notions as treated in some Buddhist texts, firstly in the primitive basic Buddhist texts in verse or in short sentences, secondly in the prose part of some s tras and finally in later developed Mah y na Buddhist texts. Then I will confront these notions with the experience of their followers, by taking the example of Zen master Dōgen. (shrink)
A major controversy in the study of the "Analects" has been over the relation between two central concepts, ren (humanity, human excellence) and li (rites, rituals of propriety). Confucius seems to have said inconsistent things about this relation. Some passages appear to suggest that ren is more fundamental than li, while others seem to imply the contrary. It is therefore not surprising that there have been different interpretations and characterizations of this relation. Using the analogy of language grammar and mastery (...) of a language, it is proposed here that we should understand li as a cultural grammar and ren as the mastery of a culture. In this account, society cultivates its members through li toward the goal of ren, and persons of ren manifest their human excellence through their practice of li. (shrink)
Lawami' al-Nazar fi Tahqiq Ma'ani al-Mukhtasar is Aḥmad b. Ya'qub al-Wallali's (d. 1128/1716) commentary on al-Sanusi's (d. 895/1490) compendium of logic, al-Mukhtasar. Al-Wallali was the first commentator on al-Sanusi's compendium after the author's autocommentary. In this publication, Ibrahim Safri offers a critical edition of this work, together with a study of the author's life and oeuvre. Safri also tries to show the indirect influence of Avicennism on logic in the Maghribi tradition in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. On the basis (...) of his writings on logic and philosophical theology, al-Wallali was considered a master of rational sciences by his contemporaries. (shrink)