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Rethinking Indian Buddhist Logic in Tang China: An Analysis and Translation of the Sādhana Section of Kuiji’s Commentary on the Nyāyapraveśa

Chen, Shuai

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This project investigates how Buddhist scholars in Tang China adopted and adapted Indian Buddhist logic at the basis of a study on the Yinming ru zhengli lun shu 因明入正理論疏 by Kuiji 窺基 (632–682). Dignāga’s (ca. 480–540) doctrine of the science of reasons is a watershed in the history of Indian logic because of its contributions to the mode of reasoning. It was first introduced in the Nyāyamūkha by Dignāga himself and then in the Nyāyapraveśa by Śaṅkarasvāmin (ca. 500–560). In the seventh century, the Nyāyapraveśa and the Nyāyamūkha were translated into Chinese by Xuanzang 玄奘 (600/602–664), and then a number of commentaries were made by Xuanzang’s disciples. The most important one was the Yinming ru zhengli lun shu by Kuiji, which was venerated as the Yinming dashu 因明大疏 (Great Commentary on the Science of Reasons) by later generations. In order to examine Kuiji’s understanding of Buddhist logic, my study analyzes and translates the sādhana section of his commentary. This study mainly deals with the following two aspects. By exploring how Kuiji integrates clusters of concepts to make definitions, how different Sanskrit terms are reconfigured, and how new concepts are invented and employed, I investigate how related concepts are interpreted in Kuiji’s commentary. Secondly, by exploring how Kuiji interprets the rules of debate to make it fair for both sides, and how he expounds the standards for judging the result, I investigate how he explains the standards of the practice of argumentation. In this manner, this study explores how Indian Buddhist logic was adopted and adapted in Tang China with a focus on Kuiji’s interpretation. In the reception of concepts and practice of Buddhist logic, the study of the science of reasons in Tang China, as a fruit of the Chinese encounter with Indian Buddhism, cannot be understood correctly in isolation, but needs to be made intelligible in relationship to both an intended Chinese readership and a conceptual context provided by Indian texts.

Item Type: Dissertation
Supervisor: Kellner, Prof. Dr. Birgit
Date of thesis defense: 1 February 2018
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 08:06
Date: 2018
Faculties / Institutes: Philosophische Fakultät > Dekanat der Philosophischen Fakultät
Service facilities > Exzellenzcluster Asia and Europe in a Global Context
Subjects: 100 Philosophy
200 Religion
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