David Burton's Buddhism, Knowledge and Liberation: A Philosophical Study PDF

By David Burton

ISBN-10: 0754604365

ISBN-13: 9780754604365

Buddhism is basically a instructing approximately liberation - from pain, lack of knowledge, selfishness and endured rebirth. wisdom of "the means issues fairly are" is assumed via many Buddhists to be important in bringing approximately this emancipation. This ebook is a philosophical research of the suggestion of freeing wisdom because it happens in a number Buddhist assets. The ebook assesses the typical Buddhist concept that wisdom of the 3 features of lifestyles (impermanence, not-self and pain) is the most important to liberation. It argues that this declare has to be obvious within the context of the Buddhist course and coaching as a complete. exact consciousness can be given to anti-realist, sceptical and mystical strands in the Buddhist culture, all of which make targeted claims approximately freeing wisdom and the character of truth. David Burton seeks to discover quite a few frustrating assumptions which underpin the Buddhist worldview. delicate to the huge variety of philosophical views and interpretation that Buddhism has engendered, this e-book makes a major contribution to severe and philosophically conscious engagement with Buddhist suggestion. Written in an obtainable variety, it may be of price to all these attracted to Buddhist reports and broader concerns in comparative philosophy and faith.

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Extra resources for Buddhism, Knowledge and Liberation: A Philosophical Study

Sample text

One perceives all sorts of changes, and numerous instances of entities coming into existence and passing away. And in the course of one's life, one often perceives the impermanence and lack of fixed nature of entities that are extremely dear to oneself. This often produces a direct experience of suffering. This is not merely knowledge by description. It is knowledge one has from direct perception. And yet one still craves and gets attached to these impermanent entities. So, even perceptual knowledge of the three characteristics, it seems, does not stop craving and attachment.

Thus, Nicholas Everitt and Alec Fisher (1995, pp. 54-5) argue that there are beliefs which one has which are unconscious dispositions in the sense that one has never consciously entertained them. One holds the beliefs, even though one has at no time thought about or been aware of them. To use Everitt and Fisher's example, it is highly probable that I have never consciously entertained the belief or understanding that 'the world contains more than ninety-nine ants' . This is a proposition that, it is likely, I have never thought about.

Know the lake in Hyde Park - that is, if ! have knowledge by acquaintance of it - I am able to describe the lake to others who have not perceived it, thus giving them knowledge by description. These people may impart their knowledge that 'there is a lake in Hyde Park' to yet other people, thus creating a chain of propositional knowledge that 'there is a lake in Hyde Park', which can be ultimately traced back to my acquaintance with the lake in Hyde Park. According to this account, knowledge by acquaintance has epistemic primacy because it is a foundational form of knowledge upon which a string of knowledge by description can be established.

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Buddhism, Knowledge and Liberation: A Philosophical Study by David Burton

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