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Buddhadharma : Summer 2016
76 buddhadharma: the practitioner’s quarterly summer 2016 or as some addendum to the Euro- centric “core” of philosophy. Garfield aims to convince scholars of Western philosophy not only that they should take Buddhist philosophy seriously but also that both traditions stand to learn from one another. The arguments in Engaging Bud- dhism are primarily directed toward professional scholars of Western phi- losophy, but the implications of Gar- field’s work are far-reaching. His con- cise presentations of Buddhist views on topics such as interdependence, empti- ness, and the mind are useful for any student or practitioner of Buddhism who wishes to understand such topics more deeply and in a broader context. Garfield’s discussion of emptiness in the third chapter is particularly use- ful for the student of Buddhism. He traces the development of the con- ception of emptiness in Buddhist his- tory, beginning with its pre-Mahayana revieWs Abhidharma iterations and its refine- ment in the Madhyamaka tradition by Nagarjuna. In elaborating on the Madhyamaka formulation of empti- ness, Garfield relies heavily on selected passages from Nagarjuna’s Fundamen- tal Wisdom of the Middle Way (Mula- madhyamakakarika), but he also ref- erences Dogen’s Genjokoan. Relying on examples of soccer matches and expert violinists, Garfield manages to unpack Dogen’s seemingly cryptic lan- guage about emptiness and the nature of buddhahood in ways that are easy to understand. From there, Garfield sum- marizes the Yogacara reinterpretation of the emptiness doctrine in terms of the three-nature theory, followed by the Chinese Huayan tradition, which bases itself on the Flower Garland Sutra, to explicitly link the notions of emptiness and interdependence. Having traced these major developments in Buddhist conceptions of emptiness, Garfield Debates regarding the proper catego- rization of Buddhist philosophy might seem superficial to some, but Garfield stresses that the inclusion of non-West- ern philosophy as “philosophy” in the English-speaking world is necessary and important. His book doesn’t argue for this position but rather takes it as a starting point, presenting what Garfield describes as “a first step toward reme- diating the problem” of considering Buddhist and other non-Western philo- sophical traditions as an afterthought engaging buddhism: Why it matters to philosophy by Jay garfield oxford, 2015 400 pages; $29.95 University of the West Rosemead, CA www.uwest.edu 626-571-8811 X313 Join one of only four accredite programs MASTER OF ARTS/DIVINITY DEGREE OR DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY DEGREE IN RELIGIOUS STUDIES Specialize in the study of Buddhism and comparative religion, engage in spiritual care and counseling work, and receive a: SubScriber ServiceS Subscribe • Renew • Pay an invoice • Give a Gift Purchase back issues • Change your address Inquire about a subscription • Replace a missing issue Online easy, quick, and secure Visit Subscriber Services at www.lionsroar.com Call tOll-free 11:30 am – 8 pm ET weekdays 1-877-786-1950 Overseas: 01-760-317-2362 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Mail: PO Box 469095, Escondido, CA 92046–9095 Privacy notice: Subscribers may receive offers from organizations we believe may be of interest to our readers. Contact us if you wish to be excluded from such mailings. Buddhadharma The PracT i T ioner’s QuarT erly