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In Memoriam: Richard Lane Tieszen (1951-2017) Jul 2017

In Memoriam: Richard Lane Tieszen (1951-2017)

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


The Self: Kierkegaard And Buddhism In Dialogue, David Wisdo Jul 2017

The Self: Kierkegaard And Buddhism In Dialogue, David Wisdo

Comparative Philosophy

Is it possible for there to be a fruitful dialogue between Søren Kierkegaard and Buddhists regarding the understanding of the self? In this paper, I explore the possibilities for such a dialogue by first discussing the rejection of substantialism shared by Kierkegaard and Buddhists. Next, although many Buddhists accept a reductionist account of the kind found in the Abhidharma tradition, Madhyamaka thinkers such as Nāgārjuna and Candrakīrti are well-known for offering an account of the self, based on the notion of emptiness (śūnyatā), which resembles in some ways the account of the self that is proposed by Kierkegaard’s pseudonym ...


Moving, Moved And Will Be Moving: Zeno And Nāgārjuna On Motion From Mahāmudrā, Koan And Mathematical Physics Perspectives, Robert Alan Paul Jul 2017

Moving, Moved And Will Be Moving: Zeno And Nāgārjuna On Motion From Mahāmudrā, Koan And Mathematical Physics Perspectives, Robert Alan Paul

Comparative Philosophy

Zeno’s Arrow and Nāgārjuna’s Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way (Mūlamādhyamakakārikā, MMK) Chapter 2 (MMK/2) contain paradoxical, dialectic arguments thought to indicate that there is no valid explanation of motion, hence there is no physical or generic motion. There are, however, diverse interpretations of the latter text, and I argue they apply to Zeno’s Arrow as well. I also find that many of the interpretations are dependent on a mathematical analysis of material motion through space and time. However, with modern philosophy and physics we find that the link from no explanation to no phenomena is ...


The Quest For Ethical Truth: Wang Yangming On The Unity Of Knowing And Acting, Weimin Shi Jul 2017

The Quest For Ethical Truth: Wang Yangming On The Unity Of Knowing And Acting, Weimin Shi

Comparative Philosophy

Drawing an analogy between Wang Yangming’s endeavor to know ethical truth and Descartes’ quest for epistemic certainty, this paper proposes a reading of Wang's doctrine of the unity of knowing and acting to the effect that the doctrine does not express an ethical teaching about how the knowledge that is already acquired is to be related to acting, but an epistemological claim as to how we know ethical truths. A detailed analysis of Wang’s relevant texts is offered to support the claim.


Reflective Knowledge: Confucius And Virtue Epistemology, Chienkuo Mi Jul 2017

Reflective Knowledge: Confucius And Virtue Epistemology, Chienkuo Mi

Comparative Philosophy

Most of sScholars have typically regarded Confucius as an ethical thinker broadly construed and not as an epistemological thinker. This paper seeks to overturn that view and, in doing so, has three basic goals. The first goal is to make the case that Confucian thought of the Analects is of epistemological significance. Goal two is to locate the significance of the Confucian thought within epistemology while accounting for the past overlooking of this significance. The third goal is to show that the Confucian thought is not only of epistemological significance, but that it can make a contribution to progressing contemporary ...


Taking Skepticism Seriously: How The Zhuang-Zi Can Inform Contemporary Epistemology, Julianne Chung Jul 2017

Taking Skepticism Seriously: How The Zhuang-Zi Can Inform Contemporary Epistemology, Julianne Chung

Comparative Philosophy

This paper explores a few of the ways that the Zhuang-Zi can inform contemporary analytic epistemology. I begin, in section 1, by briefly outlining and summarizing the case for my fictionalist interpretation of the text. In section 2, I discuss how the Zhuang-Zi can be brought into productive dialogue with the question of how we should respond to skeptical arguments. Specifically, I argue that the Zhuang-Zi can be reasonably interpreted as exemplifying an approach that is different from dominant contemporary responses to skeptical arguments in three ways: (i) it is fictionalist; (ii) it motivates a skeptical perspective rather than a ...


Vol 8 No 2 Editor's Words Jul 2017

Vol 8 No 2 Editor's Words

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 8 No 2 Contents Page Jul 2017

Vol 8 No 2 Contents Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 8 No 2 Information Page Jul 2017

Vol 8 No 2 Information Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 8 No 2 Cover Page Jul 2017

Vol 8 No 2 Cover Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Content Individuation And Evolutionary Content Emergence, Yujian Zheng Jan 2017

Content Individuation And Evolutionary Content Emergence, Yujian Zheng

Comparative Philosophy

This short paper addresses two connected issues which were brought to some focused light by Searle’s comments on my contributed article to the anthology Searle’s philosophy and Chinese Philosophy: Constructive Engagement. The first issue concerns the claim that animals cannot have observer-independent intentional content of the same type as that of human beings. The second is my denial that mental content can be merely caused in specific brain states, given its holistic and normative character. I defend my position on the second issue by distinguishing content individuation from content realization while I elaborate my relatively more sophisticated argument ...


The Perspective And Perspective-Transcending Dimensions Of Consciousness And Its Double-Aboutness Character: Bridging Searle And Zhuang Zi, Bo Mou Jan 2017

The Perspective And Perspective-Transcending Dimensions Of Consciousness And Its Double-Aboutness Character: Bridging Searle And Zhuang Zi, Bo Mou

Comparative Philosophy

What I intend to do here are closely related three things. First, in response to Searle’s “reply” comments on my previous article “Searle, Zhuang Zi, and Transcendental Perspectivism”, I will clarify and further elaborate one of the central points concerning the “perspective” dimension and “perspective-transcending” dimension of consciousness there. Second, more substantially, I will strengthen my point by explaining the “double-aboutness” character of consciousness which is intrinsically related to the foregoing two dimensions of consciousness concerning its “hooking-up-to-objects” capacity; through a semantic-ascent strategy, I will also explain how the point has substantial theoretic implications for exploring the issue of ...


Fiction As An Institution, A. P. Martinich Jan 2017

Fiction As An Institution, A. P. Martinich

Comparative Philosophy

John Searle and I agree about many important aspects about individual speech acts within fiction. I hope to reduce the area of disagreement by explaining how much work an analysis of fiction as linguistic behavior can do to solve the problems of truth and reference in fiction. The elements of the analysis include a concept of suspending H. P. Grice’s maxims of conversation, a view about criteria for the application of words and concepts, and the acceptance of institutions and institutional facts.


Searle And Buddhism On The Non-Self, Soraj Hongladarom Jan 2017

Searle And Buddhism On The Non-Self, Soraj Hongladarom

Comparative Philosophy

In this brief note I continue the discussion that I had with John Searle on the topic of the self and the possibility of continuity of consciousness after death of the body. The gist of Searle's reply to my original paper (Hongladarom 2008) is that it is logical possible, though extremely unlikely, that consciousness survives destruction of the body. This is a rather startling claim given that Searle famously holds that consciousness is the work of the body. Nonetheless, he claims that such issue is an empirical matter which could perhaps be discovered by future science. Another point concerns ...


Searle’S Master Insight And The Non-Dual Solution Of The Sixth Patriarch: Sorting Through Some Problems Of Consciousness, Robert E. Allinson Jan 2017

Searle’S Master Insight And The Non-Dual Solution Of The Sixth Patriarch: Sorting Through Some Problems Of Consciousness, Robert E. Allinson

Comparative Philosophy

The Platform Sutra, which dates back to the seventh century C.E., is one of the classic documents of Chinese philosophy and is the intellectual autobiography of Hui Neng, the Sixth Patriarch of Ch’an Buddhism. In the Platform Sutra, the Sixth Patriarch demonstrates that the spiritual and intellectual problems of consciousness stem from a false adherence to the dualistic standpoint. The Sixth Patriarch utilizes ingenious arguments to demonstrate how one can escape the problems of dualism. An example of a constructive engagement between Chinese philosophy and Searle is to compare and contrast the arguments of Hui Neng with those ...


Malagasy Time Conceptions, Casey Woodling Jan 2017

Malagasy Time Conceptions, Casey Woodling

Comparative Philosophy

In this paper I discuss Øyvind Dahl’s argument (1995,1999) for the conclusion that Malagasy people conceive of the future as coming from behind them and not as being before them as most worldviews do. I argue that we have good reason not to attribute this view to Malagasy people. First, it would mark an inefficient and anomalous way of keeping track of the past and future. Second, the linguistic and testimonial evidence presented by Dahl doesn’t support the conclusion. Even though this specific argument fails, Dahl has many enlightening things to say about Malagasy time conceptions, such ...


Moral Practice In Late Stoicism And Buddhist Meditation, Michael Goerger Jan 2017

Moral Practice In Late Stoicism And Buddhist Meditation, Michael Goerger

Comparative Philosophy

I argue in this essay that Stoic philosophers in the late Greco-Roman period utilized philosophical exercises and spiritual technologies similar in form to a meditative exercise currently practiced in Buddhism. I begin with an in-depth discussion of moral development in the late Stoa, focusing particularly on their theories of cosmopolitanism and oikeiōsis. These theoretical commitments, I argue, necessitated the adoption of exercises and practices designed to guide practitioners toward the goal of universal moral concern. Using insights gained from Buddhist practice, I identify passages in Stoic texts that call for and prescribe moral exercise. While much work in comparative philosophy ...


Between The Internal And The External: Kant’S And Patañjali’S Arguments For The Reality Of Physical Objects And Their Independence From Mind, Ana Laura Funes Maderey Jan 2017

Between The Internal And The External: Kant’S And Patañjali’S Arguments For The Reality Of Physical Objects And Their Independence From Mind, Ana Laura Funes Maderey

Comparative Philosophy

Although coming from two very different paths, both Kant and Patañjali present similar strategies to refute the skeptic argument that denies the real and independent existence of physical objects. This essay examines both strategies through the reconstruction of Kant’s and Patañjali’s twofold refutation of idealism: one based on the perceptual distinction between the real and the illusory, and the other one based on the ontological necessity of a permanent external object to understand change. I argue that the second strategy is philosophically stronger due to its phenomenological recognition of the body as a grounding point, and that this ...


Neither Ātman Nor Anattā: Tapering Our Conception Of Selfhood, Roman Briggs Jan 2017

Neither Ātman Nor Anattā: Tapering Our Conception Of Selfhood, Roman Briggs

Comparative Philosophy

I provide critical discussion of conception of and talk of psychic integration which I take to be both excessive and deficient; these viciously extreme positions are championed by the Apostle Paul and St. Augustine (and both their religious and their secular cultural descendants in the West), and by Jacques Lacan and María Lugones (and their contemporaries), respectively. I suggest that we must negotiate a Buddhist-inspired understanding located between these extremes in endorsing any acceptable conception of the self, generally speaking—a conception which, contra the strong antirealist about selves, allows for the continued use of selfhood in everyday discourse, but ...


Editor's Words Jan 2017

Editor's Words

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 8 No 1 Contents Page Jan 2017

Vol 8 No 1 Contents Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 8 No 1 Information Page Jan 2017

Vol 8 No 1 Information Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 8 No 1 Cover Page Jan 2017

Vol 8 No 1 Cover Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Learning From Bad Teachers: Leibniz As A Propaedeutic For Chinese Philosophy, Kevin Delapp Jul 2016

Learning From Bad Teachers: Leibniz As A Propaedeutic For Chinese Philosophy, Kevin Delapp

Comparative Philosophy

One of the challenges facing instructors of Chinese philosophy courses at many Western universities is the fact that students can often bring orientalizing assumptions and expectations to their encounters with primary sources. This paper examines the nature of this student bias and surveys four pedagogical approaches to confronting it in the context of undergraduate Chinese philosophy curricula. After showcasing some of the inadequacies of these approaches, I argue in favor of a fifth approach that deploys sources from the “pre-history” of comparative philosophy, viz. documents by some of the first Western interpreters of Chinese thought. Such sources give students an ...


Nāgārjuna’S Pañcakoṭi, Agrippa’S Trilemma, And The Uses Of Skepticism, Ethan A. Mills Jul 2016

Nāgārjuna’S Pañcakoṭi, Agrippa’S Trilemma, And The Uses Of Skepticism, Ethan A. Mills

Comparative Philosophy

While the contemporary problem of the criterion raises similar epistemological issues as Agrippa’s Trilemma in ancient Pyrrhonian skepticism, the consideration of such epistemological questions has served two different purposes. On one hand, there is the purely practical purpose of Pyrrhonism, in which such questions are a means to reach suspension of judgment, and on the other hand, there is the theoretical purpose of contemporary epistemologists, in which these issues raise theoretical problems that drive the search for theoretical resolution. In classical India, similar issues arise in Nāgārjuna’s Vigrahavyāvartanī, but it is not entirely clear what Nāgārjuna’s purpose ...


Where Does The Cetanic Break Take Place? Weakness Of Will In Śāntideva’S Bodhicaryāvatāra, Stephen E. Harris Jul 2016

Where Does The Cetanic Break Take Place? Weakness Of Will In Śāntideva’S Bodhicaryāvatāra, Stephen E. Harris

Comparative Philosophy

This article explores the role of weakness of will (akrasia) in the Indian Buddhist tradition, and in particular within Śāntideva’s Introduction to the Practice of Awakening (Bodhicaryāvatāra). In agreement with Jay Garfield, I argue that there are important differences between Aristotle’s account of akrasia and Buddhist moral psychology. Nevertheless, taking a more expanded conception of weakness of will, as is frequently done in contemporary work, allows us to draw significant connections with the pluralistic account of psychological conflict found in Buddhist texts. I demonstrate this by showing how Amélie Rorty’s expanded treatment of akrasia as including emotional ...


From Political Liberalism To Para-Liberalism: Epistemological Pluralism, Cognitive Liberalism & Authentic Choice, Musa Al-Gharbi Jul 2016

From Political Liberalism To Para-Liberalism: Epistemological Pluralism, Cognitive Liberalism & Authentic Choice, Musa Al-Gharbi

Comparative Philosophy

Advocates of political liberalism hold it as a superior alternative to perfectionism on the grounds that it avoids superfluous and/or controversial claims in favor of a maximally-inclusive approach undergirded by a "free-standing" justification for the ideology. These assertions prove difficult to defend: political interpretations of liberalism tend to be implicitly ethnocentric; they often rely upon a number of controversial, and even empirically falsified, assumptions about rationality--and in many ways prove more parochial than their perfectionist cousins. It is possible to reform political liberalism to address these challenges, but generally at the expense of the supposed normative force and universality ...


Vol 7 No 2 Contents Page Jul 2016

Vol 7 No 2 Contents Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 7 No 2 Information Page Jul 2016

Vol 7 No 2 Information Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.


Vol 7 No 2 Cover Page Jul 2016

Vol 7 No 2 Cover Page

Comparative Philosophy

No abstract provided.