Download Nāgārjuna's Madhyamaka : a philosophical introduction by Nāgārjuna; Westerhoff, Jan; Nāgārjuna, Nagarjuna, Nāgārjuna PDF

By Nāgārjuna; Westerhoff, Jan; Nāgārjuna, Nagarjuna, Nāgārjuna

The Indian thinker Acharya Nagarjuna (c. 150-250 CE) used to be the founding father of the Madhyamaka (Middle course) institution of Mahayana Buddhism and arguably the main influential Buddhist philosopher after Buddha himself. certainly, within the Tibetan and East Asian traditions, Nagarjuna is frequently often called the 'second Buddha.' His basic contribution to Buddhist concept lies is within the additional improvement of the idea that of sunyata or 'emptiness.' For Nagarjuna, all phenomena are with none svabhaba, actually 'own-nature' or 'self-nature', and hence with none underlying essence. during this publication, Jan Westerhoff deals a scientific account of Nagarjuna's philosophical place. He reads Nagarjuna in his personal philosophical context, yet he doesn't hesitate to teach that the problems of Indian and Tibetan Buddhist philosophy have at the very least relatives resemblances to concerns in eu philosophy

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Extra info for Nāgārjuna's Madhyamaka : a philosophical introduction

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There is, however, a second understanding of svabhāva which is of much greater importance in the Madhyamaka debate; it considers svabhāva to be a primarily ontological notion. Rather than svabhāva’s being seen as the opposite of shared qualities (sāmānyalakṣaṇa), it is contrasted with conceptually constructed or secondary (prajñaptisat) existents and equated with the mark of the primary ones (dravyasat). 20 Primary existents constitute the irreducible constituents of the empirical world; secondary existents, on the other hand, depend on linguistic and mental construction for their existence.

For the Ābhidharmika, an object existing with svabhāva does therefore not have to be independent of everything (in particular it can depend on its causes and conditions); on the other hand, there are reasons distinct from having parts which explain why a thing is merely a secondary existent (prajñaptisat) and therefore lacking svabhāva. 29 Candrakīrti observes: Worldly things exist without being analysed. 30 The underlying idea is that whatever is not ultimately real disappears under analysis so that what we are left with must be an ultimately real object existing by its own nature.

28 In the same way, for the Madhyamaka the removal of the superimposition of svabhāva is not just about working through philosophical arguments, but also requires certain exercises to effect a cognitive shift which keeps the mistaken projection of svabhāva from occurring. A great part of Nāgārjuna’s writings consists of the investigation of individual phenomena in order to argue that they do not exist with svabhāva. Before we can turn to the examination of these arguments, however, it is necessary to deal first with some formal aspects of Nāgārjuna’s arguments.

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