Fwd: Advaita and Buddhism

Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian ramakris at EROLS.COM
Tue Jun 22 18:37:56 CDT 1999

 Vidyasankar Sundaresan <vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM> wrote:

> >For NAgArjuna, nirvAna or the paramArtha is the changeless
absolute, beyond
> >all empirical knowledge. It's to be realized only by intuition,
when all
> >dogmatic theories with standpoints are abandoned.
> >
> Of course, nAgArjuna says that nirvANa is realized intuitively, but
> does not mean that he holds it to be absolute. The very equating of
> and absolute that you refer to below is nAgArjuna's way of moving
away from
> any conception of "absolute."

A very perceptive comment from Vidya (as usual!). In the foreword to
David J. Kalupahanas, "Buddhist Philosophy: A historical Analysis," U.
of Hawaii Press, 1999, G.P. Malasekhara writes in the foreword: "But,
perhaps the most provocative chapter in the book is the seventh, which
deals with nibbAna (nirvANa). This is a subject on which countless
treatises have been written recently, especially by Western savants,
many of whom tend to interpret nibbAna as transcendental and absolute"
and goes on to criticize that view. We should remember that the Sri
Lankans have a living tradition of Buddhism almost from the time of
Buddha himself (from Ashokas time?). Their interpretations should be
taken seriously.


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