Although architecture continually responds to ascetic compulsions, as in its frequent encounter with the question of excess and less, it is typically considered separate from asceticism. In contrast, The Hermit’s Hut offers original insight and explores the rich and mutual ways in which asceticism and architecture are played out in each other’s practices. Relying primarily on Buddhist materials, author Kazi K. Ashraf provides a complex narrative that stems from the simple structure of the hermit’s hut, showing how the significance of the hut resonates widely and how the question of dwelling is central to ascetic imagination. In exploring the conjunctions of architecture and asceticism, he breaks new ground by presenting ascetic practice as fundamentally an architectural project, namely the fabrication of a “last” hut.
This innovative book weaves together the fields of architecture, anthropology, religion, and philosophy to offer multidisciplinary and historical insights. It will appeal to readers with diverse interests and in a variety of disciplines—whether one is interested in the history of ascetic architecture in India, the concept of “home” in ancient India, or the theme of the body as building.
November 2013 | 240 pages | 105 illustrations
ISBN: 978-0-8248-3583-5 | $50.00 | Cloth
Spatial Habitus: Making and Meaning in Asia’s Architecture
Warm congratulations to philosophy professor Roger T. Ames on being awarded a 2013 Confucius Culture Prize at the Sixth Annual World Confucian Conference in Shandong, China. The Confucius Culture Prize was established in 2009 to honor both institutions and individuals for their exceptional contributions to Confucian studies. Dr. Ames is the first non-Chinese to receive the award. His most recent book is Confucian Role Ethics: A Vocabulary; among several previous titles that he has coauthored or edited are: The Chinese Classic of Family Reverence: A Philosophical Translation of the Xiaojing and Focusing the Familiar: A Translation and Philosophical Interpretation of the Zhongyong.
For more information, read the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa news release and visit the UHM College of Arts & Humanities and the UHM Center for Chinese Studies websites (the latter also has links to a video documentary about Dr. Ames, or click here).
André Bareau (1921–1993) was one of the foremost scholars of Buddhism of his generation. Dissatisfied with piecemeal and contradictory information on early Buddhist schools, he set out to construct a coherent and authoritative overview, which has remained the standard treatment in the field since its appearance in 1955. This book offers a close description and analysis of Bareau’s findings on the history, geographical whereabouts, and doctrinal positions of early schools of Buddhism. The Buddhist Schools of the Small Vehicle will be used by students and scholars as a primary resource and starting point for any discussion on the history and doctrines of early Buddhism and Buddhist schools. This seminal work is translated by Sara Boin-Webb, who across a career of four decades translated into English some of the most important French-language works of Buddhist scholarship.
“Bareau’s Les sectes bouddhiques was—and remains—a highly influential contribution to the study of Indian Buddhism in general, and of the doctrinal debates of the various schools or sects of Indian Buddhism in particular. More than half a century after its original publication, Les sectes remains a standard reference work. . . . This book will stimulate research for years to come. . . . A reliable English translation of this work, then, is a welcome and timely contribution. It will be of interest to upper-level undergraduate students in Asian religions, Asian history, and philosophy. It will be required reading for graduate students in Asian religions.” —Shayne Clarke, McMaster University
Published in association with The Buddhist Society Trust
July 2013 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3566-8 / $65.00 (Cloth)
The six lectures that make up this book were delivered in March 2011 at London University’s School of Oriental and Asian Studies as the Jordan Lectures on Comparative Religion. They revolve around the intersection of two ideas, nothingness and desire, as they apply to a re-examination of the questions of self, God, morality, property, and the East-West philosophical divide.
“Many readers already know Jim Heisig through his ground-breaking critical studies and translations of Japanese philosophy. Others admire him for his efforts at interreligious dialogue and his personal activities related to global justice, education for the disenfranchised, and ecological sustainability. In this book, Heisig engages his extraordinary grasp of philosophical resources, eastern and western, Buddhist and Christian, to address the global crises we face today.” —Thomas P. Kasulis, The Ohio State University
Nanzan Library of Asian Religion and Culture
ISBN 978-0-8248-3885-0 / $49.00 (CLOTH)
ISBN 978-0-8248-3886-7 / $25.00 (PAPER)
Schopenhauer is widely recognized as the Western philosopher who has shown the greatest openness to Indian thought and whose own ideas approach most closely to it. This book examines his encounter with important schools of Hindu and Buddhist philosophy and subjects the principal apparent affinities to a careful analysis. Initial chapters describe Schopenhauer’s encounter with Indian thought in the context of the intellectual climate of early nineteenth-century Europe.
Principal sections of the book consider the two main pillars of Schopenhauer’s system in relation to broadly comparable ideas found, in the case of Hindu thought, in Advaita Vedānta, and within Buddhism in the Mādhyamika and Yogācāra schools. Schopenhauer’s doctrine of the world as representation, or a flow of impressions appearing in the consciousness of living beings, is first considered. The second main pillar of Schopenhauer’s system, the doctrine of the world as will, is then examined and its relationship to Indian thought explored. This section of the work breaks new ground in the study of Schopenhauer, for although the similarity of his ethical and soteriological teaching to that of Indian religions (particularly Buddhism) has long been noted the underlying reasons for this have not been grasped. It is demonstrated that they are to be found in hitherto unrecognized affinities, of which Schopenhauer himself was largely unaware, between the metaphysics of the will and Indian ideas relating to karmic impressions (vāsanās), the store-consciousness, the causal body, and śakti as the “force” or “energy” that maintains the existence of the world.
Final chapters discuss the controversial and difficult question of the relation of the will to final reality in Schopenhauer’s thought in the light of Indian conceptions, and suggest that the two central pillars of his philosophy may be seen, to a greater extent than previously supposed, as a bridge by which the Eastern and Western traditions of philosophical thought may be brought into a closer and more creative relationship.
Society for Asian and Comparative Monographs, No. 24
May 2013 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3735-8 / $50.00 (CLOTH)
Japanese Philosophy: A Sourcebook, edited by James W. Heisig, Thomas P. Kasulis, and John C. Maraldo, was named an Outstanding Reference Source by the Reference and User Services Association of the American Library Association. The award was established in 1958 to recommend the most outstanding reference publications for small and medium-sized public and academic libraries. The selected titles are valuable reference resources and are highly recommended for inclusion in any library’s collection.
Japanese Philosophy was also recently recognized as an Outstanding Academic Book by Choice Magazine:
“This massive tome will stand for the forseeable future as the gold standard for comprehensive treatment of all matters of Japanese philosophy. The three editors, all significant names within this small but growing subfield, have assembled an impressive group of established and up-and-coming scholars to translate and provide introductions to each entry, resulting in a readable sourcebook remarkable in both scope and acuity of analysis. . . . Essential.”
Compassion is a word we use frequently but rarely precisely. One reason we lack a philosophically precise understanding of compassion is that moral philosophers today give it virtually no attention. Indeed, in the predominant ethical traditions of the West (deontology, consequentialism, virtue ethics), compassion tends to be either passed over without remark or explicitly dismissed as irrelevant. And yet in the predominant ethical traditions of Asia, compassion is centrally important: All else revolves around it. This is clearly the case in Buddhist ethics, and compassion plays a similarly indispensable role in Confucian and Daoist ethics.
In Compassion and Moral Guidance, Steve Bein seeks to explain why compassion plays such a substantial role in the moral philosophies of East Asia and an insignificant one in those of Europe and the West.
Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy Monographs, No. 23
January 2013 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3641-2 / $45.00 (CLOTH)
Is the world one or many? In One and Many: A Comparative Study of Plato’s Philosophy and Daoism Represented by Ge Hong, Ji Zhang revisits this ancient philosophical question from the modern perspective of comparative studies. His investigation stages an intellectual exchange between Plato, founder of the Academy, and Ge Hong, who systematized Daoist belief and praxis. Zhang not only captures the tension between rational Platonism and abstruse Daoism, but also creates a bridge between the two.
“This is a work of great intellectual daring, requiring immense erudition and impressive power of synthesis. The topic, comparing the ontological ideas of Plato and Ge Hong with special reference to their implications for the one-many problem, is unique, stimulating and highly important, identifying a crucial area for cross-cultural and comparative research and producing a creative, informed, thoughtful, incisive and skillful response to the considerable challenge of making such an ambitious project bear fruit.” —Dr. Brook Ziporyn, Professor of Religion and Philosophy, Department of Religious Studies, Northwestern University
Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy Monographs, No. 22
December 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3554-5 / $27.00 (PAPER)
Japanese Philosophy: A Sourcebook, edited by James W. Heisig, Thomas P. Kasulis, and John C. Maraldo, is now available in paperback.
From a July 2011 blog post: In 1980 Thomas Kasulis (then assistant professor of philosophy at the University of Hawai‘i) dreamed of putting together an anthology focused directly on Japanese philosophical thought. Thirty-one years later, Kasulis and fellow editors James Heisig and John Maraldo have produced what will be an essential reference for English readers interested in traditional or contemporary Japanese culture and the way it has shaped and been shaped by its great thinkers over the centuries. The story behind the Sourcebook’s development, which involved dozens of scholars from around the world, can be found in the Nanzan Institute for Religion & Culture Bulletin 35 (2011).
August 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3618-4 / $35.00 (PAPER)
The idea for Japanese Philosophy: A Sourcebook can be traced back to 1980, when Thomas Kasulis (then assistant professor of philosophy at the University of Hawai‘i) dreamed of putting together an anthology focused directly on Japanese philosophical thought. Thirty-one years later, Kasulis and his fellow editors James Heisig and John Maraldo have produced what will be an essential reference for English readers interested in traditional or contemporary Japanese culture and the way it has shaped and been shaped by its great thinkers over the centuries. The story behind the Sourcebook’s development, which involved dozens of scholars from around the world, can be found in the Nanzan Institute for Religion & Culture Bulletin 35 (2011).
July 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3552-1 / $70.00 (CLOTH)
Confucian Role Ethics: A Vocabulary, by Roger T. Ames, is an exploration of what constitutes and how one becomes an authentic, moral human being as conceived in the Confucian tradition. The book establishes an interpretive context by exploring some of the cosmological foundations of Confucian philosophy through discussion of commentary on the Yijing (The Book of Changes), Traditional Chinese Medicine, and Chinese cosmology. The author proceeds to delineate the morals and ideals of a Confucian life and its foundation in feelings of familial intimacy and its human-centered religiousness. These ideas are contrasted with the principle and virtue based traditions of the Abrahamic religions as well as of the individualistic tradition beginning in ancient Greece. Lastly, Ames attempts to critically assess the strengths and weaknesses of Confucian role ethics as articulated in the early canonical texts, discussing both its return to prominence and feasibility as a system of ethical conduct for the present day.
April 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3576-7 / $31.00 (PAPER)