Tibetan Logicby Katherine Manchester Rogers
Within Tibetan Buddhism has arisen a system of education and a curriculum designed to enable the student to develop a path of reasoning—a consciousness trained in reasoned analysis until capable of understanding first the meaning of religious texts and eventually the true nature of reality. An important aspect of Tibetan logic is that it is used to develop
Within Tibetan Buddhism has arisen a system of education and a curriculum designed to enable the student to develop a path of reasoning—a consciousness trained in reasoned analysis until capable of understanding first the meaning of religious texts and eventually the true nature of reality. An important aspect of Tibetan logic is that it is used to develop new and valid knowledge about oneself and the world. Included here is a translation of a text by Pur-bu-jok, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama's philosophy tutor on the topic of Signs and Reasonings—a manual introducing beginners to the principles, vocabulary, and concepts of the system of logic. The purpose of Pur-bu-jok's text is to lay a foundation for understanding how valid cognition is acquired. What is validity? How is valid knowledge acquired? What can be known? Further, what knowledge can be acquired through reasoning that will lead one to spiritual development and even to buddhahood? Katherine Rogers has enriched the translation with commentary by several eminent scholars of the Ge-luk-pa order, revealing a marvelous path that draws one into the heart of the Tibetan approach to knowledge and self-transformation. It is fundamental to Tibetan thought that true knowledge is practical, useful, and ultimately transforming and liberating. Such knowledge is far from obvious, but it can be attained through correct reasoning. Thus, logic is an important tool—a part of the spiritual path leading ultimately to complete self-transformation.
"By providing an in-depth analysis of the logic used by Tibetan scholars, Kathy Rogers offers an important tool to all those who are interested in probing the depth of Tibetan Buddhist learning. An excellent and very thorough work that will greatly help one to understand the workings of Buddhist logic and provide a solid basis for studying the more advanced teachings of this wonderful tradition. Highly recommended for the really serious student." —Georges Dreyfus, author of The Sound of Two Hands Clapping
"This excellent book offers essential insight into the rigorous tradition of logic that is the foundation of the intellectual tradition of the great Geluk monastic universities of Tibet. Correct reasoning is the indispensable tool used to draw forth the penetrating realization of the nature of reality that is the goal of Buddhist practice. Katherine Rogers's clear and engaging presentation illuminates this important topic." —Elizabeth Napper, author of Dependent-Arising and Emptiness
"The principles and methods of Buddhist logic can be a box of very useful tools both for our contemporary formal analytical meditations and for improving our thinking about the practice of the Dharma in our everyday lives and relationships with others. As well as dealing rigorously with the technical material, Katherine Rogers gets this wider practical point across clearly at every opportunity. . . . Full of valuable insights for practitioners at every level, and it never loses touch with the inspiring and motivating enterprise of developing a 'path of reasoning' to penetrate the very nature of reality and realize the full potential of human consciousness." —Roy Sutherwood, The Middle Way
"A welcome addition to the library of serious students of debate." —Mandala
"Make[s] this exceedingly dense and difficult topic comprehensible to a Western audience." —Buddhadharma
"A groundbreaking work . . . superb exploration of the process of sound thinking." —Thomas Peter von Bahr, New Age Retailer
"This volume illuminates the goals, techniques, and paths of reasoning used in the tradition of logic by the Ge-luk-pa order of Tibetan Buddhism . . . [a] monumental contribution. . . . Highly recommended." —E. Findley, Trinity College Choice (American Library Association)
- Shambhala Publications, Inc.
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Meet the Author
Katherine M. Rogers received her PhD in Buddhist Studies from the University of Virginia. She is translator and editor of Garland of Mahamudra Practices.
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