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Religions 2014, 5(3), 522-559; doi:10.3390/rel5030522
Article

Caveat Emptor: The Dalai Lama’s Proviso and the Burden of (Scientific) Proof

Unaffiliated Scholar, Koningin Julianaweg 27, 3155 AR Maasland, The Netherlands
This article is based on a paper presented at “Buddhism and Science: An International Workshop” (University of Toronto Scarborough, Toronto, Canada, 12–14 April 2013).
Received: 19 May 2014 / Revised: 16 June 2014 / Accepted: 19 June 2014 / Published: 30 June 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Science and Religion: Buddhist and Hindu Perspectives)
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Abstract

A more complete understanding of the Dalai Lama’s intellectual milieu and mental framework serves to contextualize and appraise his contributions to the discourse on Buddhism and Science in general, and the so-called Mind and Life Dialogues in particular. In addition to providing indispensable background information, a fuller expression of his foundational views and motives sheds light upon the idiosyncratic way the Dalai Lama engages new fields of knowledge. Thanks to the Dialogues’ format and the transparency of the Dalai Lama’s scholastic mentality, the way in which Mind and Life participants meet various challenges in practice offers enough traction to retrieve and critically appraise real-time patterns of engagement and innovation. This should prove to be instrumental in determining the Dialogues’ measure of success, at least by its own standards and stated purpose. Following this approach, the Dalai Lama’s long-time use of a proviso derived from Tsongkhapa’s reading of Middle Way philosophy as a methodological distinction that delineates the scope of Science warrants specific attention.
Keywords: Buddhism; Tibetan studies; Madhyamaka; science; scholasticism; philosophy; apologetics; mind; consciousness Buddhism; Tibetan studies; Madhyamaka; science; scholasticism; philosophy; apologetics; mind; consciousness
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Hogendoorn, R. Caveat Emptor: The Dalai Lama’s Proviso and the Burden of (Scientific) Proof . Religions 2014, 5, 522-559.

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