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On what do we rely when we rely on reasoning?

Abstract

In Buddhist texts authored in Indian and Tibetan traditions of scholasticism, one is regularly directed to check one’s understanding against “scripture and reasoning.” To date, however, comparatively little attention has been given to the usage of the latter term of this pair (Skt. yukti , Tib. rigs pa) in Indian Buddhist texts. Building on the work of Scherrer-Schaub, Kapstein and others, this paper discusses divergent glosses of the term yukti as found in Indian Buddhist texts. By highlighting continuities and discontinuities in these accounts, the paper aims to stimulate reflection on the ways in which our assumptions regarding reasoning—and, by extension, what is to count as “Buddhist philosophy”—are represented in, and perhaps contested by, thematizations offered within the tradition.

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Correspondence to Richard Nance.

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All translations are author’s unless otherwise noted. For Tibetan translations, the author has relied on translations preserved in the Derge (sde dge, “D.”) edition of the Tibetan canon; references are to that edition.

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Nance, R. On what do we rely when we rely on reasoning?. J Indian Philos 35, 149–167 (2007). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10781-007-9013-9

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Keywords

  • Argument
  • Buddhism
  • Buddhist
  • Dogma
  • Logic
  • Reasoning
  • Rhetoric
  • Scripture
  • yukti