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By Andrew P. Tuck

This learn in cross-cultural hermeneutics examines the function that sleek, Western philosophy has performed within the interpretation of Nagarjuna's Madhyamikakarika, a second-century Indian-Buddhist textual content. Tuck locates a constitution of targeted levels or "styles" in glossy, philosophical historical past. those stages, Tuck exhibits, show discontinuous interpretive biases, in addition to continuity of hermeneutic purpose. studying in each one philosophical period a chaacteristic perspective in the direction of the text--whether privilege, objectivity, or neutrality--Tuck argues that the continuous reinterpretation of previous scholarly readings is in truth on the center of fruitful hermeneutic pursuit.

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Sample text

Thus a moment be­ comes a synonym of an element (dharma) , two moments are two different elements . An element becomes something like a point in time-space . . the elements do not change , but disappear, the world becomes a cinema. Disappearance is the very essence of existence; what does not disappear does not exist. A cause for the B uddhist was not a real cause but a preceding moment, which l ikewise arose out of nothing in order to disappear into nothing. 2 8 Stcherbatsky ' s two maj or studies devoted to the early and late Bud­ dhist schools fro m which I have just been quoting , The Central Concep­ tion of Buddhism and Buddhist Logic, present related expositions of , metaphysical pluralisms .

52 Full-length studies of heterodox , antiidealist schools were produced for the first time . 53 And a number of new studies organized around specific philosophical topics­ such as causation , theory of meaning , and logical strategy-reinforced the tendency to concentrate on Indian realism . 54 Modem Western phi­ losophers had shifted their allegiance from subjective idealism to "crit­ ical realism , " "logical positivism , " "logical empiricism , " and "concep­ tual analysis . " Within a very few years , it began to seem as if classical Indian philosophers had also been concerned with theories of logic , meaning , and perception , with justification of belief, philosophy of science , and linguistics .

B urnouf ' s studies , however, were the first t o center o n Buddhism as an Indian phenomenon and the first to develop a connection between the early texts of the Pali canon and the later S anskrit texts of the Mahayana schools . His concerns were initially with chronology and with establish­ ing the primacy of Indian languages in the history of Buddhist literature . But along with an attention to historical and philological matters , B ur­ nouf offered Europe an interpretation of significant Buddhist terms that has exerted influence to the present day .

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