The Svātantrika-Prāsaṅgika Distinction

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“A brilliantly riveting and scholarly tour-de-force.”—Anne C. Klein,
Rice University, author, Path to the Middle

THE SVāTANTRIKA-PRāSAṅGIKA DISTINCTION

What Difference Does a Difference Make?

Georges B.J. Dreyfus Sara L. McClintock

Madhyamaka, or “Middle Way,” philosophy came to Tibet from India and became the basis of all of Tibetan Buddhism. The Tibetans, however, differentiated two streams of Madhyamaka philosophy—Svātantrika and Prāsaṅgika. In this collection, leading scholars in the field address the distinction on various levels, including the philosophical import for both Indian and Tibetan Madhyamaka and the historical development of the distinction itself.

Learn more about the Studies in Indian and Tibetan Buddhism series.

Learn more about Tsongkhapa and Mipham Gyatso at the Treasury of Lives.

book information
  • Paperback
  • 416 pages, 6.00 x 9.00 inches
  • $36.95
  • ISBN 9780861713240
  • Paperback
  • 416 pages
  • $26.92
  • ISBN 9780861713240
about the author
The Svātantrika-Prāsaṅgika Distinction

Georges Dreyfus is author of The Svātantrika-Prāsaṅgika Distinction and a member of the editorial board for the Studies in Indian and Tibetan Buddhism series. He was the first Westerner to receive the title of Geshe after spending fifteen years studying in Tibetan Buddhist monasteries.  He then entered the University of Virginia where he received his Ph.D. in the History of Religions program.  He is currently Professor of Religion of the Department of Religion at Williams College.  His publications include Recognizing Reality: Dharmakirti and his Tibetan Interpreters (Albany: SUNY Press, 1997),  The Svatantrika-Prasangika Distinction (Co-edited with Sara McClintock, Boston: Wisdom, 2003), and The Sound of Two Hands Clapping: the Education of a Tibetan Buddhist Monk (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003), as well as many articles on various aspects of Buddhist philosophy and Tibetan culture. He is the recipient of various awards such as a National Endowment for the Humanities.

The Svātantrika-Prāsaṅgika Distinction

Sara McClintock (they/them) is a Buddhist philosopher and scholar of religion whose interests converge at the intersections of ethics, metaphysics, truth, and story. They obtained their PhD from Harvard in 2002, and are now an associate professor at Emory University, where they teach graduate and undergraduate courses in Indian and Buddhist philosophy, Buddhist narrative traditions, women in Buddhism, and interpretation theory in the study of religion. A specialist in the work of Śāntarakṣita and Kamalaśīla, they also write and translate more broadly on topics in narrative, epistemology, and ethics. Their current book project is a philosophical exploration of the transactional and camouflagic nature of truth, drawing on ideas from Indian Buddhist thinkers and putting them in conversation with contemporary concerns. While not busy with teaching and research, their passion is to discover ever new ways to nourish freedom and joy in daily life.

Other books by Sara L. McClintock:
Omniscience and the Rhetoric of Reason

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