Buddhism and Science: A Guide for the Perplexed / Edition 2

Hardcover (Print)
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $7.87
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 71%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (12) from $7.87   
  • New (5) from $17.80   
  • Used (7) from $7.87   

Overview

Beginning in the nineteenth century and continuing to the present day, both Buddhists and admirers of Buddhism have proclaimed the compatibility of Buddhism and science. Their assertions have ranged from modest claims about the efficacy of meditation for mental health to grander declarations that the Buddha himself anticipated the theories of relativity, quantum physics and the big bang more than two millennia ago.

In Buddhism and Science, Donald S. Lopez Jr. is less interested in evaluating the accuracy of such claims than in exploring how and why these two seemingly disparate modes of understanding the inner and outer universe have been so persistently linked. Lopez opens with an account of the rise and fall of Mount Meru, the great peak that stands at the center of the flat earth of Buddhist cosmography—and which was interpreted anew once it proved incompatible with modern geography. From there, he analyzes the way in which Buddhist concepts of spiritual nobility were enlisted to support the notorious science of race in the nineteenth century. Bringing the story to the present, Lopez explores the Dalai Lama’s interest in scientific discoveries, as well as the implications of research on meditation for neuroscience.   
 
Lopez argues that by presenting an ancient Asian tradition as compatible with—and even anticipating—scientific discoveries, European enthusiasts and Asian elites have sidestepped the debates on the relevance of religion in the modern world that began in the nineteenth century and still flare today. As new discoveries continue to reshape our understanding of mind and matter, Buddhism and Science will be indispensable reading for those fascinated by religion, science, and their often vexed relation.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Nature
Lopez, whose book is more a history of the discourse between Buddhism and science than an examination of how the two inform each other, makes much of the Dalai Lama's doctrinal flexibility. He suggests that this stems partly from the Tibetan leader's desire to show that his religion is not the primitive superstition that many nineteenth-century European writers—and modern Chinese communists—have described. Perhaps so, but it must also derive from the Buddhist desire to know reality and not hide behind false assumptions about the world or our own nature.

— Michael Bond

Owen Flanagan

“For philosophers and cognitive scientists interested in psychological and ethical improvement Lopez’s new book is must reading. Mind scientists report that Buddhists are especially happy and serene. What does this mean? Are concepts such as ‘suffering,’ ‘happiness,’ and ‘equanimity’ understood the same in Buddhism and in science? Lopez is exactly the right historian to take us on this expert tour of the Buddhism and science dialogues as they have developed over the past two centuries in the West. At a time when glib enthusiasts for Buddhism and science claim vindication through the other, Lopez is the wise historically sensitive voice who asks us to reflect on which science, which Buddhism we are talking about.”

Peter Harrison

“This fascinating book provides a new way of understanding the various discussions of Buddhism and science that have taken place over the past 150 years. Lopez not only gives an account of the diverse claims made for the scientific credibility of Buddhism, but in the process offers deep insights into the complex relations among science, religion, and Western modernity. The science and religion field would be vastly enriched by more studies such as this.”

Nature - Michael Bond

"Lopez, whose book is more a history of the discourse between Buddhism and science than an examination of how the two inform each other, makes much of the Dalai Lama's doctrinal flexibility. He suggests that this stems partly from the Tibetan leader's desire to show that his religion is not the primitive superstition that many nineteenth-century European writers—and modern Chinese communists—have described. Perhaps so, but it must also derive from the Buddhist desire to know reality and not hide behind false assumptions about the world or our own nature."

Nature

"Lopez, whose book is more a history of the discourse between Buddhism and science than an examination of how the two inform each other, makes much of the Dalai Lama's doctrinal flexibility. He suggests that this stems partly from the Tibetan leader's desire to show that his religion is not the primitive superstition that many nineteenth-century European writers—and modern Chinese communists—have described. Perhaps so, but it must also derive from the Buddhist desire to know reality and not hide behind false assumptions about the world or our own nature."—Nichael Bond, Nature

— Michael Bond

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226493121
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 11/15/2008
  • Series: Buddhism and Modernity Series
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author


Donald S. Lopez Jr. is the Arthur E. Link Distinguished University Professor of Buddhist and Tibetan Studies in the Department of Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Michigan. He is the author or editor of a number of books, including Prisoners of Shangri-La, The Madman’s Middle Way, and Critical Terms for the Study of Buddhism, all published by the University of Chicago Press.
 
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Preface

Introduction
1  First There Is a Mountain
2  Buddhism and the Science of Race
3  Two Tibetans
4  The Science of Buddhism
5  The Meaning of Meditation
Conclusion: Measuring the Aura

Notes
Index

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)