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Author : Donald S. Lopez Jr.

Binding : Paperback

Size : NA

Language : English

Pages : 450

Publisher : Snow Lion Publications

Year of Publication : 1987

A Study of Svatantrika represents an important contribution to our unbderstanding of Madhyamika philosophy in India and Tibet. The Madhyamika is considered to have had two subschools, Svatantrika and Prasangika. The Prasangika school of Candrakirti is better known than Svatantrika, in part because the major Svatantrika texts are preserved only in Tibetan translation. The Svatantrikas, however, made important contributions to Buddhist philosophy in their expositions of the nature of reality, the role of reasoning in the process of enlightenment, and in their delineations of the paths to nirvana. The synthesis of Yogacara and Madhyamika philosophy by the Svatantrika master Santaraksita represents the final development of Buddhist thought in India. In Tibet, Svatantrika was the first Indian Buddhist school to gain currency, prior to the translation of the works of Candrakirti into Tibetan.

In preparing this Study of Svatantrika, the author has consulted the major Indian works of the Svatantrikas, such figures central to the development of Buddhist thought in India as Bhavaviveka, Jnanagarbha, Santaraksita, and Kamalasila, and has nalyzed a number of Tibetan expositions of Svatantrika to produce the most extensive examination of this influential school available in the West.

Donald S. Lopez, Jr. holds a Ph. D. in Religious Studies from the University of Virginia, where he specialized in Tibetan Buddhism. As a Fulbright scholar in India, he studied Madhyamika philosophy with leading Tibetan scholars. He is currently Associate Professor of Religion at Middlebury College. He is the author of The Heart Sutra Explained: Indian and Tibetan Commentaries (SUNY Press) and editor of Buddhist Hermeneutics (University of Hawaii Press).

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