Get Buddhist Biology: Ancient Eastern Wisdom Meets Modern PDF

By David P. Barash

ISBN-10: 0199985561

ISBN-13: 9780199985562

Many high-profile public intellectuals -- together with "New Atheists" like Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, and the overdue Christopher Hitchens -- have argued that faith and technological know-how are deeply opposed, representing international perspectives which are totally incompatible. David Barash, a well known biologist with 40 years of expertise, mostly is of the same opinion with them, yet with one very large exception: Buddhism.

In this attention-grabbing e-book, David Barash highlights the interesting universal floor among clinical and non secular proposal, illuminating the various parallels among biology and Buddhism, permitting readers to determine either in a brand new means. certainly, he indicates that there are lots of locations the place Buddhist and organic views coincide and toughen one another. for example, the cornerstone ecological thought -- the interconnectedness and interdependence of all traditional issues -- is remarkably just like the elemental perception of Buddhism. certainly, a big Buddhist textual content, the Avatamsaka Sutra, which is composed of ten insights into the "interpenetration" among beings and their atmosphere, may possibly good were written through a informed ecologist, simply as present insights in evolutionary biology, genetics and improvement could have been authored through the Buddha himself. Barash underscores different striking similarities, together with a shared mistrust of straightforward cause-and-effect research, an appreciation of the "rightness" of nature, besides an acknowledgment of the ache that effects while normal methods are tampered with. Buddhist Biology indicates how the idea that of "non-self," so complicated to many Westerners, is totally in line with smooth biology, as is the Buddhist point of view of "impermanence." Barash either demystifies and celebrates the biology of Buddhism and vice versa, displaying in a concluding tour-de-force how glossy Buddhism --shorn of its hocus-pocus and abracadabra -- not just justifies yet really mandates either socially and environmentally "engaged" notion and perform.

Buddhist Biology is a piece of detailed highbrow synthesis that sheds outstanding mild on biology in addition to on Buddhism, highlighting the awesome methods those views come jointly, like robust searchlights that supply complementary and attractive views at the global and our position in it.

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Extra info for Buddhist Biology: Ancient Eastern Wisdom Meets Modern Western Science

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Keep it real! And reality is precisely what Buddhism is mostly about. Much of that reality is neither more nor less than the natural reality of the physical world, especially nature itself. Consider this foundation tale, told about Mahakashyapa, one of the major early disciples of the Buddha. ” He responded by smiling. Mahakashyapa has subsequently been widely acknowledged as the first Indian founder of what eventually became Zen Buddhism. Then there is this poem, titled “At Home in the Mountains,”13 written nearly one thousand years ago and representative of a continuing tradition: Strung with garlands of flowering vines, This patch of earth delights the mind; The lovely calls of elephants sound— These rocky crags do please me so!

That is why I think the word inter-be should be in the dictionary. “To be” is to inter-be. You cannot just be by yourself alone. You have to inter-be with every other thing. This sheet of paper is, because everything else is. Suppose we try to return one of the elements to its source. Suppose we return the sunshine to the sun. Do you think 38 Buddhist Biology that this sheet of paper will be possible? No, without sunshine nothing can be. And if we return the logger to his mother, then we have no sheet of paper either.

And if we return these non-paper elements to their sources, then there can be no paper at all. Without “non-paper elements,” like mind, logger, sunshine and so on, there will be no paper. 11 Now, turn your attention from the cloud in that sheet of paper to the cloud in your own skin, the carrot in your kidneys, the dirt in your pancreas, the bit of fossil fuel in your biceps, the components of nitrogenous fertilizer molecules in your liver. ” In fact, there is nothing in me or you that is anything other than not-me or not-you elements.

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Buddhist Biology: Ancient Eastern Wisdom Meets Modern Western Science by David P. Barash

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