The Buddhist Theory of Self-Cognition

The Buddhist Theory of Self-Cognition

by Zhihua Yao
     
 

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ISBN-10: 041534431X

ISBN-13: 9780415344319

Pub. Date: 12/22/2005

Publisher: Taylor & Francis

This highly original work explores the concept of self-awareness of self-consciousness in Buddhist thought. Within the Buddhist doctrinal system, the Sanskrit word svasamvedana or svasamvitti (self-cognition, self-awareness or self-consciousness) signifies a form of reflexive awareness. It is one of the key concepts in the Buddhist epistemological system developed by

Overview

This highly original work explores the concept of self-awareness of self-consciousness in Buddhist thought. Within the Buddhist doctrinal system, the Sanskrit word svasamvedana or svasamvitti (self-cognition, self-awareness or self-consciousness) signifies a form of reflexive awareness. It is one of the key concepts in the Buddhist epistemological system developed by Dignaga (ca. 480-540 CE) and his followers. The discussion on whether the mind knows itself also had a long history in the Buddhist schools of Mahasamghika, Sarvastivada, Sautrantika and early Yogacara. The same issue was debated later among followers of the Madhyamaka and Yogacara schools. This work is the first to study systematically the Buddhist theory of self-cognition with an emphasis on its pre-Dignaga development. Its central thesis is that the Buddhist theory of self-cognition originated in a soteriological discussion of omniscience among the Mahasamghikas, and then evolved into a topic of epistemological inquiry among the Yogacarins. To illustrate this central theme, the author draws on a large body of primary sources in Chinese, Pali, Sanskrit and Tibetan, most of which are being presented to an English readership for the first time. This work makes available important resources for the study of the Buddhist philosophy of mind.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415344319
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
12/22/2005
Series:
Routledge Critical Studies in Buddhism Series
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.50(d)

Table of Contents

Prefaceix
Abbreviationsxii
1Introduction1
2Origin: Mahasamghika6
The origin of self-cognition6
The Mahasamghika theory of self-cognition7
The Andhakas' arguments for self-cognition23
3Refutation: Sarvastivada42
Sarvastivada Abhidharma42
Awareness of single moment44
Refutation of self-awareness49
Discussion of self-consciousness68
Two minds and memory72
The problem of self-feeling78
4Synthesis: Sautrantika97
Sautrantika: Sources97
Multiple minds99
Mental consciousness104
Proof of self-cognition113
5Systematization: Yogacara121
Yogacara and its two schools121
Self-cognition in early Yogacara123
Self-cognition: Dignaga130
Cognition of self-cognition: Dharmapala145
Later development147
6Conclusion156
AppendixDates of Important Authors161
Bibliography165
Index190

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