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Chapter 1 - Schopenhauer’s Buddhism Revisited: Recent Archival Evidence

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 July 2021

Angela Moorjani
Affiliation:
University of Maryland, Baltimore County
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Summary

The first chapter of this twenty-first-century reassessment of Beckett’s dialogue with Buddhist concepts investigates Beckett’s early source of Buddhist philosophy in Schopenhauer’s transmission of Eastern thought. The chapter addresses the doubt expressed by some Beckett exegetes about Schopenhauer as a viable source by detailing recent archival findings and the judgment of scholars of Buddhism on this question. Building on these findings, a section on Schopenhauer’s understanding of Upanishadic and Buddhist concepts counters doubts about his ability to distinguish between the two. The brief survey of what these two systems of Indian thought share and where they part ways is intended to lessen the chance of mistaking one for the other or singling out one, when it could be either, thereby setting the stage for the next chapters. An example of such a mistaken identity by Beckett scholars at the end of the chapter is intended as a cautionary tale.

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Beckett and Buddhism , pp. 19 - 37
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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