Zen and Science: Zen as an Ethical Guideline for Scientists’ Conducts

  • Rosan YoshidaEmail author
Part of the Mindfulness in Behavioral Health book series (MIBH)


Since it was first introduced to the West in early 1900s, many scholars and practitioners have discussed Zen along with sciences in various foci. What has not been fully discussed, however, is the potential role of Zen as an overarching ethical guideline for the behavior of scientists as well as the consumers of science. In this chapter, Reverent Rosan Yoshida Roshi argues the importance of establishing and adhering to such a guideline and states that Zen is particularly suitable to promote it. First, Yoshida argues that unlike our image of science as being value-free and bias-free, science is a human enterprise which is extremely vulnerable to our tendency to prioritize the demands from ego (i.e., me-ism/selfishness/sinfulness), which is often manifested as utilitarianism, materialism, militarism, and the money-ism. Yoshida then states that these tendencies are destructive and threatens the entire ecosystem. According to Yoshida, Zen teachings can counteract or mitigate this tendency as it emphasizes collective wholeness as its ultimate goals and presents remedies for lessening these egocentric demands.


Ethics Science Zen Buddhism Zen Humanity 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Missouri Zen CenterWebster GrovesUSA

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