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The making of Buddhist modernism

Author: David L McMahan
Publisher: Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2008.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"A great deal of Buddhist literature and scholarly writing about Buddhism of the past 150 years reflects, and indeed constructs, a historically unique modern Buddhism, even while purporting to represent ancient tradition, timeless teaching, or the "essentials" of Buddhism. This literature, Asian as well as Western, weaves together the strands of different traditions to create a novel hybrid that brings Buddhism into  Read more...
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Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: David L McMahan
ISBN: 9780195183276 0195183274
OCLC Number: 216938497
Description: 299 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: Introduction: Buddhism and modernity --
The spectrum of tradition and modernism --
Buddhism and the discourses of modernity --
Modernity and the discourse of scientific Buddhism --
Buddhist Romanticism: art, spontaneity and the wellsprings of nature --
A brief history of interdependence --
Meditation and modernity --
Mindfulness, literature, and the affirmation of ordinary life --
From modern to postmodern?
Responsibility: David L. McMahan.
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Abstract:

"A great deal of Buddhist literature and scholarly writing about Buddhism of the past 150 years reflects, and indeed constructs, a historically unique modern Buddhism, even while purporting to represent ancient tradition, timeless teaching, or the "essentials" of Buddhism. This literature, Asian as well as Western, weaves together the strands of different traditions to create a novel hybrid that brings Buddhism into alignment with many of the ideologies and sensibilities of the post-Enlightenment West. In this book, David McMahan charts the development of this "Buddhist modernism." McMahan examines and analyzes a wide range of popular and scholarly writings produced by Buddhists around the globe. He focuses on ideological and imaginative encounters between Buddhism and modernity, for example in the realms of science, mythology, literature, art, psychology, and religious pluralism. He shows how certain themes cut across cultural and geographical contexts, and how this form of Buddhism has been created by multiple agents in a variety of times and places. His position is critical but empathetic: while he presents Buddhist modernism as a construction of numerous parties with varying interests, he does not reduce it to a mistake, a misrepresentation, or fabrication. Rather, he presents it as a complex historical process constituted by a variety of responses - sometimes trivial, often profound - to some of the most important concerns of the modern era."--Jacket.

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David McMahan has developed a creative and richly suggestive historical synthesis. ... McMahan's investigation is a valuable and welcome addition to studies of Victorian-era Buddhism, Buddhism and Read more...

 
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