Philosophy East and West, vol. 52, no. 3 (2002)


David L. Hall (1937–2001)
Roger T. Ames, 277


Moral Autonomy, Civil Liberties, and Confucianism
Joseph Chan, 281

Three claims are defended. (1) There is a conception of moral autonomy in Confucian ethics that to a degree can support toleration and freedom. However, (2) Confucian moral autonomy is different from personal autonomy, and the latter gives a stronger justification for civil and personal liberties than does the former. (3) The contemporary appeal of Confucianism would be strengthened by including personal autonomy, and this need not be seen as forsaking Confucian ethics but rather as an internal revision in response to new social circumstances. From this inclusion emerges a new theory of liberties that recognizes the value of personal autonomy and the importance of the ethical good that liberties instrumentally serve to promote.

Retrieving the Vivekacūdāmani: The Poles of Religious Knowing
Thomas A. Forsthoefel, 311

There are two main inspirations for an analysis of an important post-Śankara text: the recent controversial debate in Philosophy East and West concerning the status of anubhava as a pramāna for Śankara, and recent scholarship in the epistemology of religious experience that focuses on broader mechanisms of knowing to determine the epistemic significance of religious experience. These projects are combined and extended, and it is argued that the Vivekacūdāmani dances between the poles of ‘‘internalism’’ and ‘‘externalism’’ with considerable social and epistemic consequences on universalism, exclusivism, and the justification of claims that follow upon liberating experience.

Knowledge and Liberation: Philosophical Ruminations on a Buddhist Conundrum
David Burton, 326

A philosophical analysis is offered of the relationship between knowledge and liberation in Buddhism. Buddhists often consider the knowledge of impermanence as a key to liberation from craving, attachment, and hence suffering. However, it can be objected that one may know that things are impermanent and yet still be subject to craving and attachment. In the face of this objection, critical consideration is given to five ways in which one might preserve the claim that a knowledge of things as they actually are results in liberation from craving and attachment. Many Buddhists might in fact reject the thesis that knowledge alone, no matter how it is characterized, is a sufficient condition for liberation.

Reconsidering Surrogate Decision Making: Aristotelianism and Confucianism on Ideal Human Relations
Ruiping Fan, 346

The rise in the recent Western pattern of surrogate decision making is not a necessary result of an increase in the number of elderly with decreased competence; it mayr ather manifest the dominant Western vision of human life and relations. From a comparative philosophical standpoint, the Western pattern of medical decision making is individualistic, while the Chinese is familistic. These two distinct patterns may reflect two different comprehensive perspectives on human life and relations, disclosing a foundational difference that can be seen in the Aristotelian account of friendship and the Confucian account of humanity. The contemporary development of surrogate decision making in the West may illustrate a general tendency toward the Aristotelian account, while the Chinese approaches are congruent with the Confucian view. Also explored are some merits of the Chinese approach to family decision making for health care.

Personal Identity, Minimalism, and Madhyamaka
Roy W. Perrett, 373

The publication of Derek Parfit’s Reasons and Persons in 1984 revived and reshaped the debate on personal identityin Western philosophy. Not only does Parfit argue forcefully and ingeniously for a revisionary Reductionist theory of persons and their diachronic identity, but he also draws radical normative inferences from such a theory. Along the way he also mentions Indian Buddhist parallels to his own Reductionist theory. Some of these parallels are explored here, while particular attention is also paid to the supposed normative implications of Reductionism.


The Nine Chapters on the Mathematical Art: Companion and Commentary, by Shen Kangshen, John N. Crossley, and Anthony W.-C. Lun
Reviewed by Mary Tiles, 386

Key Concepts in Eastern Philosophy, by Oliver Leaman
Reviewed by Dan Wolne, 389

Itō Jinsai’s Gomō Jigi and the Philosophical Definition of Early Modern Japan, by John Allen Tucker
Reviewed by Samuel Hideo Yamashita, 392


The Law of Peoples: With ‘‘The Idea of Public Reason Revisited,’’ by John Rawls, 396