Journal of Buddhist Ethics

An online journal of Buddhist scholarship related to ethics.


Zen Meets Kierkegaard

ISSN 1076-9005
Volume 22, 2015

A Love Knowing Nothing: Zen Meets Kierkegaard

Mary Jeanne Larrabee
DePaul University

I present a case for a love that has a wisdom knowing nothing. How this nothing functions underlies what Kierkegaard urges in Works of Love and how Zen compassion moves us to action. In each there is an ethical call to love in action. I investigate how Kierkegaard’s “religiousness B” is a “second immediacy” in relation to God, one springing from a nothing between human and God. This immediacy clarifies what Kierkegaard takes to be the Christian call to love. I draw a parallel between Kierkegaard’s immediacy and the expression of immediacy within a Zen-influenced life, particularly the way in which it calls the Zen practitioner to act toward the specific needs of the person standing before one. In my understanding of both Kierkegaard and Zen life, there is also an ethics of response to the circumstances that put the person in need, such as entrenched poverty or other injustices.

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Review: Meditation on Good and Evil

ISSN 1076-9005
Volume 12, 2005

Living with the Devil: A Meditation on Good and Evil. By Stephen Batchelor. New York: Riverhead Books (Penguin Imprint). Pp. 224. ISBN 1573222763.

Reviewed by Michael Keating

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Review: History of Christian-Buddhist Dialogue

SSN 1076-9005
Volume 9 2002

Christianity and Buddhism: A Multicultural History of Their Dialogue. By Whalen Lai and Michael von Bruck. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis, 2001, xiv + 265 pages, ISBN 1-57075-362-8 (paperback), $40.00.

Reviewed by Peter A. Huff

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Review: Buddhist-Christian Dialogue

ISSN 1076-9005
Volume 8, 2001

Buddhists Talk about Jesus, Christians Talk about the Buddha. Edited By Rita M. Gross and Terry C. Muck. New York: Continuum, 2000, 144 pages, ISBN: 0–8264–1196–7 (paperback), US $14.95.

Reviewed by Eric Reinders

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Review Essay: Buddhist-Christian Dialogue

ISSN 1076-9005
Volume 4 1997

Reflections On The Buddhist-Christian Dialogue In Its Second Decade: Issues In Theory And Practice

A Bridge to Buddhist-Christian Dialogue. By Seiichi Yagi and Leonard Swidler. New York: Paulist Press, 1990. 152 p. $9.95.

Zen Spirit, Christian Spirit: the Place of Zen in Christian Life. By Robert L.Kennedy. New York: Continuum, 1996. 144 p. $12.95.

The Emptying God: a Buddhist-Jewish-Christian Conversation. Edited by John B.Cobb and Christopher Ives. Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 1990. 212 p. $19.00.

The Meaning of Christ: a Mahāyāna Theology. By John P. Keenan. Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 1996. 312 p. $21.00.

Charles B. Jones
Catholic University of America

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Review: Postmodern Thought in Buddhism and Christianity

ISSN 1076-9005
Volume 5 1998

Healing Deconstruction: Postmodern Thought in Buddhism and Christianity. Edited by David Loy. American Academy of Religion, Reflection and Theory in the Study of Religion, no. 3. Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1998, 120 pages, ISBN: 0-7885-0122-4, US $23.95.

On Deconstructing Life-Worlds: Buddhism, Christianity, Culture. By Robert Magliola. American Academy of Religion, Cultural Criticism, no. 3. Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1997. Pp. xxii + 202. ISBN: 0-7885-0296-4, US $19.95.

Reviewed by N. Robert Glass

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Review: Monasticism in Theravāda Buddhism and Medieval Catholicism

ISSN 1076-9005
Volume 4 1997

Virtuosity, Charisma, and the Social Order: A Comparative Sociological Study of Monasticism in Theravāda Buddhism and Medieval Catholicism. By Ilana Freidrich Silber. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995, x + 250 pages, ISBN 0-521-41397-4, $54.95.

Reviewed by Mavis Fenn

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Judeo-Christian and Buddhist Justice

ISSN 1076-9005
Volume 2 1995

Judeo-Christian and Buddhist Justice

Winston King
Vanderbilt University

This article compares and contrasts the traditional Judeo-Christian and Buddhist notions of justice. It begins with an examination of some traditional biblical resources, such as the Job story, and moves ahead to trace Buddhist ideas about justice as developed in the Pāli Canon. In the Conclusion, more recent Buddhist considerations are developed, such as those found in Zen and in modern socially engaged Buddhism.

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