The Golden Age of Buddhist Philosophy
OverviewDuring this weekend we will be dealing with two central topics in the development of Buddhist thought. These correspond to two sections of Jan Westerhoff’s "The Golden Age of Indian Buddhist Philosophy" (OUP 2018). One is the question whether there is a soul or substantial self. The other is the question whether there are any external objects. The schools of Nyāya and Mīmāṃsā defended the existence of both a substantial self and of an external world, whereas the former was denied by the Abhidharma Buddhists, and both were denied by Yogācāra, a later school of Buddhism. Philosophers from the non-Buddhist classical Indian tradition unsurprisingly did not agree with the Buddhist conclusions. There will be plenty of opportunity to question the speakers.
SATURDAY 15 FEBRUARY 2020
2.45pm Course Registration
3.00pm The Abhidharma arguments against a substantial self
4.30pm Tea / coffee
5.00pm The Nyāya arguments for a substantial self
6.30pm Break / bar open
8.15pm- The Yogācāra arguments against external objects
9.30pm JAN WESTERHOFF
SUNDAY 16 FEBRUARY 2020
8.15am Breakfast (residents only)
9.30am The Mīmāṃsā refutation of idealism
10.45am Coffee / tea
11.15am Q & A - Questions directed by MARIANNE TALBOT
12.30pm Break / bar open
2.00pm Course disperses
SUGGESTED READING:William Cully Allen, Sanskrit Debate: Vasubandhu's Vīmśatikā versus Kumārila's Nirālambanavāda. Peter Lang, 2014, Chapters 4 and 5.
Matthew Dasti, Stephen Phillips, The Nyāya-Sūtra: Selections with Early Commentaries, Hackett Publishing Company, 2017, Chapter 4.
Matthew Kapstein: Reason's Traces: Identity and Interpretation in Indian & Tibetan Buddhist Thought. Wisdom Publications 2001, chapter 14, and Vātsyāyana and Uddyotakara on the Aphorisms of Reason.
Mark Siderits: Buddhism as Philosophy, Ashgate 2007, chapters 3 and 8.
Fernando Tola, Carmen Dragonetti: Being as Consciouness, Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi 2004, part II.
Accommodation for this weekend is at Rewley House for Saturday night only.
Depending on availability it may also be possible to extend your stay, please enquire at the time of booking for availability and prices.
All bedrooms are modern, comfortably furnished and each room has tea and coffee making facilities, Freeview television, and Free WiFi and private bath or shower rooms.
Tuition (includes tea/coffee): £80.00
Baguette Sunday: £5.00
Dinner Saturday evening: £21.00
Double Room B&B Saturday night: £118.00
Double Room Only Saturday Night: £94.00
Single B&B Saturday Night: £83.00
Single Room Only Saturday Night : £71.00
Sunday Lunch: £15.00
If you are in receipt of a state benefit you may be eligible for a reduction of 50% of tuition fees.
If you do not qualify for the concessionary fee but are experiencing financial hardship, you may still be eligible for financial assistance.
Professor of Buddhist Philosophy, University of Oxford.
Nilanjan Das is a lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at University College London. He works on epistemology and classical philosophy in Sanskrit.
Director of Studies
Marianne Talbot took her first degree at London University, then her B.Phil at Oxford (Corpus Christi College). She has taught for the colleges of Oxford University for 30 years (1987 – 1990 at Pembroke College, 1991 – 2000 at Brasenose College). She has been Director of Studies in Philosophy at OUDCE since 2001. She is the author of Bioethics: An Introduction, and Critical Reasoning: A Romp Through the Foothills of Logic. Marianne’s podcasts have been hugely popular. Two of them have been global number one on iTunesU. One of these (The Nature of Arguments) has been downloaded 7 million times.
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