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Questions tagged [buddhism]

a religion of eastern and central Asia that is based on the teachings of Gautama Buddha

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If our perceptions are not “real”, how can common perceptions be explained?

I am trying to understand emptiness (Buddhism). As I understand it, nothing that can be changed, or broken down into smaller parts is inherently real. If my worldly perceptions of emptiness are not ...
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159 views

What if Brentano was wrong?

Brentano held that every mental phenomenon has content, has a mental object, is about a mental object, or words to that effect. However, skillful Buddhist phenomenologists, over millenia, have found ...
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Are Wittgenstein's propositions about death incompatible with momentariness?

Are Wittgenstein's propositions about death incompatible with momentariness? I think mean that death, which is a cessation that is not lived through, cannot change life, and we are immortal outside ...
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How does catuskoti apply to everyday life?

An article on Aeon published the concept of catuskoti, a principle in use during the age of Buddha. It states that for any given statement, there are four possibilities i.e. it might be true (and ...
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How are 'voluntary' actions possible in the scope of Sam Harris's framework of free will (its absence actually)?

Disclamer: I am striving to understand the point of view, not to examine if it is right or wrong (makes sense or not, etc.). I have listened to two audio excerpts by Sam Harris, discussing his views ...
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To what extent can the invention of zero in India as a number be tied to Buddhist philosophy, if at all?

The Wikipedia entry on zero suggests that the ancient Greeks were unsure about the ontological status of zero. They asked themselves, 'How can nothing be something?' whereas in Buddhism, Sunyata or ...
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2answers
93 views

What are the relationships between Foucault's medical gaze, scientific investigation, and Buddhist detachment?

From this note from a clinical psychologist, the Foucault's gaze is described as: ... with this powerful gaze the physician could penetrate illusion and see through to the underlying reality, that ...
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4answers
250 views

Are there specifically Buddhist arguments against the eternal return of the same?

Are there specifically Buddhist arguments against the eternal return of the same? There seems like there should be. However, I'm highly confused by what a "final nirvana", complete extinction, could ...
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3answers
400 views

What is Buddhism: and have any Western philosophers got anything ineffable across? [closed]

I understood almost all the philosophical texts of the Western countries I read, because the West separates philosophical issues from religious and nationalist issues. But when I read about Buddhism, ...
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1answer
64 views

Does a material cause either depend on its effect or appear to be somehow self-sufficient?

Does a material cause either depend on its effect or appear to be somehow self suffiient? Aristotle considers the material "cause" (hyle) of an object as equivalent to the nature of the raw ...
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3answers
312 views

Nietzsche on European Buddhism

What does Nietzsche mean, in the Genealogy of Morals, when he refers to European Buddhism? Did he think Europeans misunderstood Buddhism?
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3answers
249 views

The Origin of Thought

What is the most fundamental form of thought? In Tibetan Buddhism, there is the concept of the Three Vajras, or The Three Doors, which are body, speech, and mind. The human mind can be said to think ...
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1answer
54 views

Buddhist canon database

Is there an online database that either contains the Buddhist canon in either English or Chinese? I've had a difficult time tracking down first hand sources other than the usual suspects (Heart ...
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2answers
211 views

Buddhism and soul

My understanding is Buddhism does not agree with an immutable soul and yet it talks about Karma and rebirth. I do not quite see how they are reconciled. I have an idea but am not sure if this is what ...
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1answer
76 views

How to reconcile the understanding of pain in Buddhism with that of Kabbalah?

A Kabbalistic interpretation of pain says, "Everything that we talk about and experience is never our soul experiencing pain; it's the body consciousness, the Desire to Receive for the Self Alone. And ...
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8answers
583 views

Trying to understand koan, Buddhist philosophy

I'm having a hard time trying to understand a koan from the Introduction of Mathematics Made Difficult, by Carl E. Linderholm "One of the great Zen masters had an eager disciple who never lost an ...
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2answers
102 views

Could Zen have a chance to “transform” ( aka outbreak ) the Western logos oriented thoughts?

This Saturday I will have a chance to meet someone whose father is a Zen Buddhist. Personal things aside, along with learning Zen, I have found out the similarity that Zen, one of whose main methods, ...
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1answer
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The non-existence of Gettier problems in Indo-Tibetan epistemology

Reading the paper Gettier and Factivity in Indo‐Tibetan Epistemology the author claims at some point early in the paper that There are two initial problems which make it difficult to compare ...
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The unanswered questions

Avyākṛta in sanskrit. The Buddha remained silent when asked these fourteen questions. He described them as a net and refused to be drawn into such a net of theories, speculations, and dogmas. ...
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Does the question further?

Sometimes, a lay person would approach the Buddha and ask a question, such as, "If I earn all of the money in the world, will she like me?" to which the Buddha would reply, "It does not further". As ...
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Is Buddhism antinatalist?

I was listening to a discussion with David Benatar, and the point that Buddhism seems to be antinatalist was raised. It seems that people argue this both ways. Can Buddhism be said to be antinatalist? ...
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3answers
832 views

How might studying philosophy impact your mental health?

According to wikipedia on Pessimism and Pragmatic Criticism ...Al-Ghazali and William James rejected their pessimism after suffering psychological, or even psychosomatic illness... Other authors ...
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1answer
79 views

How similar were Epicureans and Stoics to Buddhism on suffering?

One of the main goals of the Buddhist philosophy/religion is to be free of suffering. Buddhism identifies ego, desire, non acceptance of impermanence, ignorance and all negative emotions(because the ...
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3answers
382 views

Is there a relation between postmodernism and Asian philosophies?

As an Asian, I see that postmodernism and Taoism and Buddhism all share a similar idea: the truth cannot be grasped. Is there any relation between postmodernism and Asian philosophies? Can Laozi and ...
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4answers
546 views

Buddhism in Phaedo

At the end of Phaedo, Socrates proves, in his own manner, that the soul is immortal and goes through an endless cycle of metempsychosis and, "if deemed to have lived an extremely pious life are freed ...
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Descartes vs Buddha - Was Descartes wrong?

Descartes imagined an Evil Demon to suggest that the external world could be a complete illusion. This Evil Demon would have the power to trick all your senses. This idea is similar to the Buddhist ...
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6answers
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Is Buddhism a religion or philosophy?

I am planning to live with Buddhist monks. But I am hesitant. I am not sure whether I shall be able to live with them without leaving my current religion. I think, if Buddhism is a religion, I am ...
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Validation of Enlightenment in Buddhism

What standards are used to evaluate and validate the potential enlightenment one may have achieved in Buddhism? Do these vary between Theravada and Mahayana traditions, or vary in even more ...
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2answers
565 views

Does Buddhism have a creation myth?

How does Buddhism explain the world? Was it created or eternally existant? Do they have creation myths? I'm asking this question, because what little & superficial knowledge I hve about Buddhism ...
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3answers
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Foucault and Derrida on spiritual liberation

Apart from his analysis of truth and power, when Foucault says... ...truth isn’t the reward of free spirits, the child of protracted solitude, nor the privilege of those who have succeeded in ...
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4answers
214 views

Is extra-sensory perception considered a valid source of knowledge in any Western branch of philosophy?

I have read that some Eastern philosophies, such as Buddhist philosophy, have considered extra-sensory perception (as attained through meditation), a valid source of knowledge. For example, the Buddha ...
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3answers
392 views

What is the philosophical significance of the First Law of Thermodynamics?

The Law states that “no energy can be destroyed or created, for it is constant; it can only be transformed from one form to another”. Do you think this alignes with many of the teachings of Buddhism, ...
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2answers
549 views

What does Nietzsche mean by religion of decadence?

In The Antichrist, Nietzsche says that Christianity and Buddhism are both religions of decadence. What does this mean? Specifically, what are the hallmarks of such a religion? What are its values? ...
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Does Nagarjuna's MMK offer any interesting arguments against the existence of a God?

Does Nagarjuna's MMK offer any interesting arguments against the existence of a God? I believe that it's meant to be a refutation of the view that dharmas, elements of cognition, have svabhava, or ...
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Is Logic Empirical?

We use the logical system that we know from observations (empirical data) holds true in the world we live in (please correct me if I am wrong). Hence the axioms of logic we choose are themselves ...
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6answers
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How can anyone who hasn't realised the truth claim that Mahatma Buddha or any other person in history realised the God or Truth?

Isn't it possible that whatever they have realised is just a psychological effect? Doing continuously hard practices leads to affect their mind and they tend to believe that, yes, this is the truth. ...
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Can fictional entities have capacities?

Can fictional entities have capacities? I think in Buddhism there is a definite trend to claim that every entity is fictional, but has causes and effects. i wouldn't really assent to the idea that ...
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136 views

Unitedness of environment and self philosophical movement

This, I believe is a well known concept within Nichren Buddhism (and perhaps other parts of Buddhism; I don't know), but I am wondering if there is a name for the idea that the environment and self ...
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Are there any Western philosophies that present views similar to the No-self view of Buddhism?

Can similarities be found in western philosophy with the eastern concept of self (no-self) in Buddhism? In Buddhism the no-self is called anatman. Buddha spoke about the emptiness of the form, in the ...
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Is Nothing actually imaginable?

It's possible to imagine something, for example a table, we see one everyday and can bring it in front of our minds eye (although it's a moot point whether we can see it - I certainly don't). But of ...
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1answer
201 views

Why does Nagasena reject Attributes + Dependence on Constituents Parts, as a Substance?

Source: p 362 Top. Introducing Philosophy for Canadians: A Text with Integrated Readings (2011 1 ed). Nagasena's point? As it is with 'chariot', so it is with 'person'. Like 'chariot', 'person' ...
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Can there be momentum in an atomic moment of time?

Nagarjuna, a buddhist philsopher around 200 AD, in India, wrote on the impossibility of motion in the context of justifying Buddhist ontology (lack of svabhava); this is the content of the second ...
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1answer
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Is Belnap's four-valued logic technically a relevance logic?

Belnap, the American Logician, constructed a four-valued logic which is a form of relavance logic; interestingly the truth-values it takes are: true false both true & false neither ...
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1answer
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How valid is Nietzsche's critique of Buddhism?

According to a paper titled Nietzsche's Reception of Buddhist Psychology With Constant Reference to Christianity by McDonald (2012), given at a conference in Copenhagen, Nietzsche's work contains 158 ...
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1answer
153 views

What debating tactic does the monk Nagasena use against King Milinda?

Source: p 36, Chapter 4, Philosophy ; A Very Short Introduction (2002) by Edward Craig. Chapter 4 here summarises Milindapañha, the Questions of King Milinda the entirety of which I have not read.  ...
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4answers
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Are there any differences between the Eastern and Western philosophical traditions on what constitutes rationality?

I am aware of the way Western philosophers define rationality but I do not know whether Eastern philosophers define it. Are there any differences between the Eastern and Western philosophical ...
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6answers
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How can we let go of one (the Self) and not the other (Free Will)? [duplicate]

I am under the impression that in western culture, it is quite common to conceive the Self as an illusion — probably as an import from eastern religions, and in particular from Buddhism, and in ...
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8answers
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Is “opacity of mind” specifically a Nyingma position within Buddhism?

In various Nyingma Buddhist groups in Nepal there is a local theory of mind that, most basically, holds that you can not ever know what another person is thinking. This is a phenomenon that I have ...
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What is the religion of the future? [closed]

There's a famous quote said by Albert Einstein: "The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion.  It should transcend a personal God and avoid dogmas and theology.  Covering both the natural and ...
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1answer
153 views

Are axioms non-empty?

In Buddhism the concept of inherent existence plays a very important role: an object is "empty" is synonymous with saying that it is dependently originated. So I was looking for non-empty things. ...