Philosophy East and West, vol. 62, no. 3 (2012)

ARTICLES

Nishida Kitarō, G.W.F. Hegel, and the Pursuit of the Concrete: A Dialectic of Dialectics
Lucy Schultz, 319

A comparison of the dialectical worldviews of Nishida and Hegel is made by developing the notion of dialectical ontology as concrete philosophy in which logic is understood to extend beyond the level of discourse to the point where knowledge and experience cease to be opposed. The differences between their dialectical methods are outlined, highlighting Hegel’s emphasis on the actualization of self-consciousness and historical progress in contrast to Nishida’s concepts of the dialectal universal “place,” the external now, and the self as expressive monad. It is argued that neither thinker is able to fulfill his own demand for a maximally concrete philosophy. However, by performing a dialectic of their dialectics, the pursuit of concrete philosophy is furthered. Takahashi Satomi’s notion of “inclusive dialectics” is introduced to aid in articulating the comparative standpoint through which such a dialectic may be conceived.


Utpaladeva’s Conception of Self in the Context of the Ātmavāda-anātmavāda Debate and in Comparison with Western Theological Idealism
Irina Kuznetsova, 339

This essay examines the unique conception of self (ātman) developed by Utpaladeva, one of the greatest philosophers of the Kashmir Śaiva Recognition (Pratyabhijñā) school, in polemics with Buddhist no-self theorists and rival Hindu schools. The central question that fueled philosophical debate between Hinduism and Buddhism for centuries is whether a continuous stable entity, which is either consciousness itself or serves as the ground of consciousness, is required to sustain all the experienced features of embodied physical and mental activity, and, in the context of the conceptualization of the world as saṃsāra, whether such a self persists between rebirths and in liberation. Utpaladeva argues contra Buddhists and contra other ātmavādins not only that differentiation and unity or change and continuity are compatible, but that a coherent account of our experience requires a continuous dynamic substratum that accommodates both. The Pratyabhijñā’s ātman is opposed to that of Nyāya, Vaiśeṣika, and Mīmāṃ sā insofar as it is de-individuated, which makes it close to Advaita’s Brahman, also a universal consciousness, from which it differs, however, insofar as it is theological and acts as the contentbearer by taking on forms, as opposed to being impersonal and passive. When compared with theologies, both from within and outside the wider domain of Hindu thought, the Pratyabhijñā proves to be unique in that it gives a philosophically nuanced account of God, who stands in a nondual relationship to the individual self. This essay also compares the Pratyabhijñā’s theological account of self with the theological idealism of Berkeley and Bradley, finding it closer to the latter. Comparing the Pratyabhijñā with its nearest Western philosophical counterparts should make it more accessible and intelligible from the standpoint of the Western academy and pave the way for involving its rich and distinctive conception of self in the fledgling cross-cultural philosophical dialogue on questions concerning self and consciousness.

The Definition of Universal Concomitance as the Absence of Undercutting Conditions
G. G. Krishnamurthi, 359

This essay discusses a prominent definition of universal concomitance in the Nyāya School of Classical Indian Philosophy. This definition holds that universal concomitance is equivalent to the absence of undercutting conditions. It will be shown that though this definition seems to be inadequate, there is an auxiliary condition that may be added which makes the equivalence between universal concomitance and the absence of undercutting conditions deductively correct. It will then be shown that this auxiliary condition fits well into the Nyāya foundations of logic and that furthermore this auxiliary condition does not unreasonably restrict the applicability of the definition of universal concomitance as the absence of undercutting conditions. Hence, the conclusion is that this interpretation is a good candidate for how the definition of universal concomitance as the absence of undercutting conditions should be understood.

Beyond the Five Relationships: Teachers and Worthies in Early Chinese Thought
David Elstein, 375

The Five Relationships are commonly held to be fundamental to Confucian thought and, according to some scholars, constitute the basis of all human relationships. This essay examines how the ruler-minister relationship served as a site over a debate about the political importance of virtue in early Chinese philosophy. Some early texts, including the Confucian texts Mengzi and Xunzi, argue that virtue confers a different status that rulers should recognize by treating the virtuous as equals or even superiors. In particular, these texts claim that teachers and worthies are not ministers, and thus do not fit the ruler-minister paradigm. Other texts, such as the Han Feizi and Guanzi, argue against this position, denying that virtue is relevant to political status. They claim that the ruler is superior to all, and that it is dangerous to grant special status based on moral qualities. The texts that adhere most closely to the Five Relationships are actually those considered Legalist, not Confucian. Thus, reexamining the Five Relationships is a way to throw light on the contested status of the morally worthy in early Chinese social and political thought.

COMMENT AND DISCUSSION

Sagehood: The Contemporary Significance of Neo-Confucian Philosophy, by Stephen C. Angle
Thorian R. Harris, 392

A Response to Thorian Harris
Stephen C. Angle, 397

A Reply to Stephen Angle
Thorian R. Harris, 400

FEATURE REVIEW

More Essays on Japanese Philosophy, a review of Confluences and Cross-Currents, edited by Raquel Bouso García and James W. Heisig, and Classical Japanese Philosophy, edited by James W. Heisig and Rein Raud
Robert E. Carter, 403

BOOK REVIEWS

Individualism In Early China: Human Agency and the Self in Thought and Politics, by Erica Fox Brindley
Reviewed by Hagop Sarkissian, 408

Taking Confucian Ethics Seriously, edited by Kam-por Yu, Julia Tao, and Phillip Ivanhoe
Reviewed by Eric Mullis, 411

Buddhism as Philosophy: An Introduction, by Mark Siderits
Reviewed by Evan Thompson, 413

Economics of an Islamic Economy, by Rauf A. Azhar
Reviewed by Oliver Leaman, 416

Buddhism and Postmodernity: Zen, Huayan, and the Possibility of Buddhist Postmodern Ethics, by Jin Y. Park
Reviewed by Sor-Ching Low, 417

Philosophy after Hiroshima, edited by Edward Demenchonok
Reviewed by Eduardo Mendieta, 420

Classical Indian Philosophy of Induction: The Nyāya Viewpoint, by Kisor Kumar Chakrabarti
Reviewed by Paul J. Williams, 423

Moonshadows: Conventional Truth in Buddhist Philosophy, by the Cowherds
Reviewed by Jeremy E. Henkel, 428

Lives of Confucius: Civilization’s Greatest Sage Through the Ages, by Michael Nylan and Thomas Wilson
Reviewed by Guo Jue, 429

The End of Comparative Philosophy and the Task of Comparative Thinking, by Steven Burik
Reviewed by Adam Loughnane, 433

BOOKS RECEIVED

Books Received, 437

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