THE COLUMBIA SOCIETY FOR COMPARATIVE PHILOSOPHY
JOSEPH WALSER (Tufts University)
With responses from:
SANDEEP SREEKUMAR (Baruch College)
Please join at Columbia University's Religion Department on FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 27 at 5:30PM for his lecture entitled:
“Reading Nagarjuna as a Political Philosopher"
Scholars of Buddhist philosophy are quite comfortable thinking of Nagarjuna as a "philosopher" or as an "epistemologist", and indeed he does have a lot to contribute to ongoing discussions in these areas. For some reason, Nagarjuna's writings have yet to be studied for their contributions to political philosophy. I argue here that Nagarjuna did not have to argue for the relevance of his philosophy on emptiness to the political realm because both he and his audience would have already assumed it. I contend that the epistemological regress discussed in the Vigrahavyavartani would also have been understood as addressing a legitimation regress that was the subject of court debates at the time. As such, we can position Nagarjuna's philosophy of emptiness as a new entry into debates vying to define secure grounding for the royal coronation rites and rites of priestly installation in vogue at the time.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 27
Rm. 101, 80 Claremont Ave, Columbia University