Tom J.F. Tillemans
Tom J.F. Tillemans is Professor Emeritus of Buddhist Studies in the Faculty of Oriental Languages and Civilizations at the University of Lausanne in Switzerland. With a focus on Buddhist logic and epistemology, Madhyamaka philosophy, and comparative philosophy, he was from 1998–2006 co-editor of the Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies. Born in 1950 in the Netherlands and raised in Canada, he now serves as a senior project editor for the 84000 project tasked with translating the scriptures of the Tibetan Buddhist canon. He divides his time between Switzerland and British Columbia, Canada.
Books, Courses & Podcasts
How Do Mādhyamikas Think?
Tom Tillemans, who has studied Buddhist philosophy since the 1970s, excels in bringing analytic and continental philosophy into conversation with thinkers in the Sanskrit and Tibetan traditions. This volume collects his writings on the most rarefied of Buddhist philosophical traditions, the Madhyamaka, and its radical insights into the nature of reality. Tillemans’ approach ranges from retelling the history of ideas, to considering implications of those ideas for practice, to formal appraisal of their proofs. The 12 essays (four of which are being published for the first time) are products of rich and sophisticated debates and dialogues with colleagues in the field.
Scripture, Logic, Language
Dharmakīrti, an Indian Buddhist philosopher of the seventh century, explored the nature, limits, and justifications of rationality within the context of Buddhist religious and metaphysical concerns. While Dharmakīrti is widely recognized for his crucial innovations in Indian logic and semantic theory, his notoriously difficult thought nonetheless remains poorly understood.
In this volume, one of the world’s leading scholars of Buddhist philosophy sheds light on the interrelated topics of scripture, logic, and language in the works of Dharmakīrti and his philosophical heirs, both Indian and Tibetan. Professor Tillemans’ knowledgeable explanations of such technical subjects as the apoha theory of reference and the problem of entailment (vyāpti) are coupled throughout with insightful reflections on how best to evaluate Dharmakīrti’s theories in light of contemporary philosophical thought. Scripture, Logic, Language is an informative and thought-provoking study for students of Buddhism as well as for those in the wider field of philosophy.