Madhyamaka and Yogacara: Allies or Rivals?

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9780190231286: Madhyamaka and Yogacara: Allies or Rivals?

Madhyamaka and Yogacara are the two principal schools of Mahayana Buddhist philosophy. While Madhyamaka asserts the ultimate emptiness and conventional reality of all phenomena, Yogacara is usually considered to be idealistic. This collection of essays addresses the degree to which these philosophical approaches are consistent or complementary.

Indian and Tibetan doxographies often take these two schools to be philosophical rivals. They are grounded in distinct bodies of sutra literature and adopt what appear to be very different positions regarding the analysis of emptiness and the status of mind. Madhyamaka-Yogacara polemics abound in Indian Buddhist literature, and Tibetan doxographies regard them as distinct systems. Nonetheless, scholars have tried to synthesize the two positions for centuries. This volume offers new essays by prominent experts on both these traditions, who address the question of the degree to which these philosophical approaches should be seen as rivals or as allies. In answering the question of whether Madhyamaka and Yogacara can be considered compatible, contributors engage with a broad range of canonical literature, and relate the texts to contemporary philosophical problems.

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About the Author:


Jay L. Garfield is Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Professor of Humanities and Head of Studies in Philosophy at Yale-NUS College, Professor of Philosophy at the National University of Singapore, Recurrent Visiting Professor of Philosophy at Yale University, Doris Silbert Professor in the Humanities and Professor of Philosophy at Smith College, Professor of Philosophy at Melbourne University, and Adjunct Professor of Philosophy at the Central University of Tibetan Studies. He teaches and pursues research in the philosophy of mind, foundations of cognitive science, logic, philosophy of language, Buddhist philosophy, cross-cultural hermeneutics, theoretical and applied ethics, and epistemology.

Jan Westerhoff is University Lecturer in Religious Ethics at the University of Oxford, a Fellow and Tutor in Theology and Religion at Lady Margaret Hall, University of Oxford, and a Research Associate at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. His research concentrates on systematic aspects of ancient Indian philosophy, especially on Madhyamaka.

Review:


"A welcome addition to the current literature on Mahayana Buddhist philosophy." - Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies


"This is an important work on an issue that is surely amongst the most complex in Buddhist Studies. Garfield and Westerhoff have brought together eleven contributions whose mix of philology, history, and philosophical analysis advances our understanding significantly." --Tom Tillemans, Professor Emeritus, University of Lausanne


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