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Only by inhabiting Dao (the Way of Nature) and dwelling in its unity can humankind achieve true happiness and freedom, in both life and death. This is Daoist philosophy's central tenet, espoused by the person-or group of people-known as Zhuangzi (369?-286? B.C.E.) in a text by the same name. To be free, individuals must discard rigid distinctions between good and bad, right and wrong, and follow a course of action not motivated by gain or striving. When one ceases to judge events as good or bad, man-made suffering disappears and natural suffering is embraced as part of life. Zhuangzi elucidates this mystical philosophy through humor, parable, and anecdote, deploying non sequitur and even nonsense to illuminate a truth beyond the boundaries of ordinary logic. Boldly imaginative and inventively worded, the Zhuangzi floats free of its historical period and society, addressing the spiritual nourishment of all people across time. One of the most justly celebrated texts of the Chinese tradition, the Zhuangzi is read by thousands of English-language scholars each year, yet only in the Wade-Giles romanization. Burton Watson's pinyin romanization brings the text in line with how Chinese scholars, and an increasing number of other scholars, read it.
Since the end of the nineteenth century, Chinese philosophy has
experienced an intensely self-conscious creative transformation.
Contemporary Chinese philosophers developed sophisticated positions
in many central areas of philosophy and set out to reinterpret the
complex inheritance of ancient Chinese philosophy. "
Contemporary Chinese Philosophy" features leading scholars
describing and critically assessing the works of sixteen major
twentieth-century Chinese philosophers. The book explores these
philosophers' attempts to revive and modernize the Confucian,
Daoist, Mohist, Legalist, Logicist, Neo-Confucian, and Buddhist
schools as well as their critiques of Western thinkers from Plato
to Wittgenstein. It demonstrates that the values and achievements
of Chinese philosophers offer a gateway to understanding the
development of Chinese views of humanity and reality.
This volume enables students and general readers to understand the rich and challenging diversity of issues and positions explored in contemporary Chinese philosophy.
The Oxford Handbook of World Philosophy provides the advanced student or scholar a set of introductions to each of the world's major non-European philosophical traditions. It offers the non-specialist a way in to unfamiliar philosophical texts and methods and the opportunity to explore non-European philosophical terrain and to connect her work in one tradition to philosophical ideas or texts from another. Sections on Chinese Philosophy, Indian Philosophy, Buddhist Philosophy, East Asian Philosophy, African Philosophy, and Recent Trends in Global Philosophy are each edited by an expert in the field. Each section includes a general introduction and a set of authoritative articles written by leading scholars, designed to provide the non-specialist a broad overview of a major topic or figure. This volume is an invaluable aid to those who would like to pursue philosophy in a global context, and to those who are committed to moving beyond Eurocentrism in academic philosophy.
Buddha was a revolutionary. His practice was subversive; his message, seditious. His enlightened point of view went against the norms of his day--in his words, "against the stream." His teachings changed the world, and now they can change you too.
Presenting the basics of Buddhism with personal anecdotes, exercises, and guided meditations, bestselling author Noah Levine guides the reader along a spiritual path that has led to freedom from suffering and has saved lives for 2,500 years. Levine should know. Buddhist meditation saved him from a life of addiction and crime. He went on to counsel and teach countless others the Buddhist way to freedom, and here he shares those life-changing lessons with you. Read and awaken to a new and better life.
Eduard Fischer takes us on an exploration of myth, art, science, and the sacred space of high mountains. This is an account of adventure and deep reflection accompanied by a selection of the author's stunning colour photographs. After first visiting the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh in 1985, he returned again and again, seeking to catch a glimpse of the phantom of the Himalayas - the elusive snow leopard. During these visits he became enthralled with the unique culture of this ancient mountain kingdom, one of the oldest enclaves of Buddhism. The phantom cat itself becomes, at turns, Eduard's quarry, nemesis, obsession, and finally, in a surprising twist of destiny, his teacher.
SPIRITUALITY / POETRY"Hafez has no peer." Goethe "Hafez fears nothing. He sees too far; he sees throughout; such is the only man I wish to see or be." Ralph Waldo Emerson "The unity of spirit and mind is the legacy of Hafez." Nietzsche For six hundred years the Persian poet Hafez has been read, recited, quoted, and loved by millions of people in his homeland and throughout the world. In Hafez: Teachings of the Philosopher of Love new contemporary translations by one of the leading scholars of Hafez connect this traditional spiritual and philosophical wisdom to a modern vision of the world. The book includes over thirty complete poems by Hafez, accompanied by commentary from the authors on the meanings and contexts of the poetry and philosophies of this spiritual teacher. Authors Haleh Pourafzal and Roger Montgomery show how the visionary poet Hafez--whose work inspired Goethe, Nietzsche, and Ralph Waldo Emerson--can serve as an ideal source of inner renewal in our often troubled world, as well as a bridge between the West and Middle East, two cultures in desperate need of mutual empathy. HALEH POURAFZAL (1956-2002) was the daughter of Abdol-Hossein Pourafzal, a lifelong student of Persian linguistics and direct descendant of the creator of the contemporary Farsi prose form. Haleh grew up tuned to the spirit of the great poet during her childhood in Tehran, where her father would perform daily recitations of Hafez's poetry. She drew upon her father's expertise in developing her own interpretations of the poet's verse. From the moment Haleh introduced her husband, ROGER MONTGOMERY, to the poetry of Hafez, they shared a deep love and respect for his work. It was in the spirit of gaining agreater understanding of this great poet, sage, and philosopher that this book was born. Montgomery is also the author of Twenty Count: Secret Mathematical System of the Aztec/Maya and lives in Berkeley, California.
Christian theologians have for some decades affirmed that they have no monopoly on encounters with God or ultimate reality and that other religions also have access to religious truth and transformation. If that is the case, the time has come for Christians not only to learn about but also from their religious neighbors. Circling the Elephant affirms that the best way to be truly open to the mystery of the infinite is to move away from defensive postures of religious isolationism and self-sufficiency and to move, in vulnerability and openness, toward the mystery of the neighbor. Employing the ancient Indian allegory of the elephant and blind(folded) men, John J. Thatamanil argues for the integration of three often-separated theological projects: theologies of religious diversity (the work of accounting for why there are so many different understandings of the elephant), comparative theology (the venture of walking over to a different side of the elephant), and constructive theology (the endeavor of re-describing the elephant in light of the other two tasks). Circling the Elephant also offers an analysis of why we have fallen short in the past. Interreligious learning has been obstructed by problematic ideas about "religion" and "religions," Thatamanil argues, while also pointing out the troubling resonances between reified notions of "religion" and "race." He contests these notions and offers a new theory of the religious that makes interreligious learning both possible and desirable. Christians have much to learn from their religious neighbors, even about such central features of Christian theology as Christ and the Trinity. This book envisions religious diversity as a promise, not a problem, and proposes a new theology of religious diversity that opens the door to robust interreligious learning and Christian transformation through encountering the other.
Mencius was the philosopher whose influence upon ancient Chinese thought was second only to that of Confucius, whose teachings Mencius defended and expanded. The Mencius, in which he recounts his dialogues with kings, dukes, and military men, as well as other philosophers, is one of the four books that make up the essential Confucian corpus. It takes up Confucius's theories of jen, or goodness, and yi, righteousness, explaining that the individual can achieve harmony with mankind and the universe by perfecting his innate moral nature and acting with benevolence and justice. Mencius's remarkably modern views on the duties of subjects and their rulers and on the evils of war created a Confucian orthodoxy that has remained intact since the third century BCE.
* An essential text in Confucian thought
The Upanisads are among the most sacred foundational scriptures in the Hindu religion. Composed from 800 BCE onwards and making up part of the larger Vedic corpus, they offer the reader "knowledge lessons" on life, death, and immortality. While they are essential to understanding Hinduism and Asian religions more generally, their complexities make them almost impenetrable to anyone but serious scholars of Sanskrit and ancient Indian culture. This book is divided into five parts: Composition, authorship, and transmission of the Upanisads; The historical, cultural, and religious background of the Upanisads; Religion and philosophy in the Upanisads; The classical Upanisads; The later Upanisads. The chapters cover critical issues such as the origins of the Upanisads, authorship, and redaction, as well as exploring the broad religious and philosophical themes within the texts. The guide analyzes each of the Upanisads separately, unpacking their contextual relevance and explaining difficult terms and concepts. The Upanisads: A Complete Guide is a unique and valuable reference source for undergraduate religious studies, history, and philosophy students and researchers who want to learn more about these foundational sacred texts and the religious lessons in the Hindu tradition.
Despite the apparent lack of any cultural and religious connection between Kierkegaard and Iqbal, their philosophical and religious concerns and their methods of dealing with these concerns show certain parallels. This book provides a Kierkegaardian reading of Muhammad Iqbal's idea of becoming a genuine Muslim. It reflects on the parallels between the philosophical approaches of Kierkegaard and Iqbal, and argues that, though there are certain parallels between their approaches, there is a significant difference between their philosophical stances. Kierkegaard was concerned with developing an existential dialectics; Iqbal, however, focused mostly on the identification of the problems of the modern Muslim world. As a result, Iqbal's idea of becoming a genuine Muslim - the practical aspect of his thought and one of the most central issues of his philosophy - seems to be unclear and even contradictory at points. This book therefore uses the parallels between the two philosophers' endeavours and the notions developed by Kierkegaard to provide a strong hermeneutical tool for clarifying where the significance of Iqbal's idea of becoming a Muslim lies. By bringing together two philosophers from different cultural, traditional and religious backgrounds, this book will appeal to students and scholars of Comparative Politics, Contemporary Islamic Philosophy and the Philosophy of Religion.
Rich distillation of the timeless precepts of extremely influential Chinese philosopher and social theorist. Footnotes.
Hinduism: A Contemporary Philosophical Investigation explores Hinduism and the distinction between the secular and religious on a global scale. According to Ranganathan, a careful philosophical study of Hinduism reveals it as the microcosm of philosophical disagreements with Indian resources, across a variety of topics, including: ethics, logic, the philosophy of thought, epistemology, moral standing, metaphysics, and politics. This analysis offers an original and fresh diagnosis of studying Hinduism, colonialism, and a global rise of hyper-nationalism, as well as the frequent acrimony between scholars and practitioners of Hindu traditions. This text is appropriate for use in undergraduate and graduate courses on Hinduism, and Indian philosophy, and can be used as an advanced introduction to the problems of philosophy with South Asian resources.
An illuminating record of dialogues between the Dalai Lama and some of today's most prominent scientists, philosophers, and contemplatives In 2013, during a historic six-day meeting at a Tibetan monastery in southern India, the Dalai Lama gathered with leading scientists, philosophers, and monks for in-depth discussions on the nature of reality, consciousness, and the human mind. This eye-opening book presents a record of those spirited and wide-ranging dialogues, featuring contributions from prominent scholars like Richard Davidson, Matthieu Ricard, Tania Singer, and Arthur Zajonc as they address such questions as: Does nature have a nature? Do you need a brain to be conscious? Can we change our minds and brains through meditation? Throughout, the contributors explore the exciting and sometimes surprising commonalities between Western scientific and Tibetan Buddhist methods of perceiving, investigating, and knowing. Part history, part state-of-the-field, part inspiration for the future, this book rigorously and accessibly explores what these two investigative traditions can teach each other, and what that can tell us about ourselves and the world.
This edition goes beyond others that largely leave readers to their own devices in understanding this cryptic work, by providing an entree into the text that parallels the traditional Chinese way of approaching it: alongside Slingerland's exquisite rendering of the work are his translations of a selection of classic Chinese commentaries that shed light on difficult passages, provide historical and cultural context, and invite the reader to ponder a range of interpretations. The ideal student edition, this volume also includes a general introduction, notes, multiple appendices -- including a glossary of technical terms, references to modern Western scholarship that point the way for further study, and an annotated bibliography.
Japanese Environmental Philosophy is an anthology that responds to the environmental problems of the 21st century by drawing from Japanese philosophical traditions to investigate our relationships with other humans, nonhuman animals, and the environment. It contains chapters from fifteen top scholars from Japan, the United States, and Europe. The essays cover a broad range of Japanese thought, including Zen Buddhism, Shintoism, the Kyoto School, Japanese art and aesthetics, and traditional Japanese culture.
As with many religious and philosophical traditions, Buddhist intellectual discourse owes its development to a dynamic interplay of primary source material and subsequent interpretation, yet until now Buddhist scholarship has neglected to privilege one crucial series of texts. Commentaries on Buddhist scripture, particularly the sutras, written by seminal thinkers across the history of Indian Buddhism, contain myriad insights into the relationship between textual analysis and ritual practice. Evaluating these commentaries in detail for the first time, Richard F. Nance revisits--and rewrites--the critical history of Buddhist thought, including its unique conception of doctrinal transmission.
Written by such luminaries as Nagarjuna, Vasubandhu, Dignaga, and Santideva, scriptural commentaries have long played an important role in the monastic and philosophical life of Indian Buddhism. Nance reads these texts against the social and cultural conditions of their making, establishing a solid historical basis for the interpretation of key beliefs and doctrines. He also underscores areas of contention, in which scholars debate what it means to speak for, and as, a Buddha. Throughout these texts, Buddhist commentators struggle to deduce and characterize the speech of Buddhas and teach others how to convey and interpret its meaning. At the same time, they demonstrate the fundamental dilemma of trying to speak on behalf of Buddhas. Nance also investigates the notion of "right speech" as articulated by Buddhist texts and follows ideas about teaching as imagined through the common figure of a Buddhist preacher. He notes the use of epistemological concepts in scriptural interpretation and the protocols guiding the composition of scriptural commentary. He then translates three such commentarial guides to better clarify the normative assumptions organizing these scholars' work.
This volume contains nine chapters of translation, by a range of leading scholars, focusing on core themes in the philosophy of Zhu Xi (1130-1200), one of the most influential Chinese thinkers of the later Confucian tradition. It includes an Introduction to Zhu's life and thought, a chronology of important events in his life, and a list of key terms of art. Zhu Xi's philosophy offers the most systematic and comprehensive expression of the Confucian tradition; he sought to explain and show the connections between the classics, relate them to a range of contemporary philosophical issues concerning the metaphysical underpinnings of the tradition, and defend Confucianism against competing traditions such as Daoism and Buddhism. He elevated the Four Books-i.e. the Analects, Mengzi, Great Learning, and Doctrine of the Mean-to a new and preeminent position within the Confucian canon and his edition and interpretation of these four texts was adopted as the basis for the Imperial Examination System, which served as the pathway to officialdom and success in traditional Chinese society. Zhu Xi's interpretation remained the orthodox tradition until the collapse of the Qing dynasty (1644-1911) and exerted a profound and enduring influence on how Confucianism was understood in Korea, Japan, and Vietnam.
Families of Virtue articulates the critical role of the parent-child relationship in the moral development of infants and children. Building on thinkers and scientists across time and disciplines, from ancient Greek and Chinese philosophers to contemporary feminist ethicists and attachment theorists, this book takes an effective approach for strengthening families and the character of children. Early Confucian philosophers argue that the general ethical sensibilities we develop during infancy and early childhood form the basis for nearly every virtue and that the parent-child relationship is the primary context within which this growth occurs. Joining these views with scientific work on early childhood, Families of Virtue shows how Western psychology can reinforce and renew the theoretical underpinnings of Confucian thought and how Confucian philosophers can affect positive social and political change in our time, particularly in such areas as paid parental leave, breastfeeding initiatives, marriage counseling, and family therapy.
‘The material contained in this volume was originally presented in the form of talks to students, teachers and parents in India, but its keen penetration and lucid simplicity will be deeply meaningful to thoughtful people everywhere, of all ages, and in every walk of life. Krishnamurti examines with characteristic objectivity and insight the expressions of what we are pleased to call our culture, our education, religion, politics and tradition; and he throws much light on such basic emotions as ambition, greed and envy, the desire for security and the lust for power – all of which he shows to be deteriorating factors in human society.’From the Editor’s Note‘Krishnamurti’s observations and explorations of modern man’s estate are penetrating and profound, yet given with a disarming simplicity and directness. To listen to him or to read his thoughts is to face oneself and the world with an astonishing morning freshness.’Anne Marrow Lindbergh
The Madhyamakahrdayakarika along with its auto-commentary, the Tarkajvala, is the earliest work to examine Sravaka, Yogacara, Samkhya, Vaisesika, Vedanta, and Mimamsa in detail. Olle Qvarnstrom provides a critical edition and English translation of the Samkhya and Vedanta chapters of this treatise and a historical introduction.
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