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The Other Side of Zen: A Social History of Sōtō Zen Buddhism in Tokugawa Japan (review)

The Other Side of Zen: A Social History of Sōtō Zen Buddhism in Tokugawa Japan (review) ``forces,'' and dao as ``most productive course.'' These translations can be disorienting and even frustrating for someone familiar with other translations, but this disorientation cannot but be a good thing: why do we pursue intercultural philosophy if not to render the familiar and obvious more strange and disorienting? At the very least, the issues of translation raised by Behuniak must be addressed and taken seriously. Surely he is right that translating xing as ``nature'' has misleading connotations. Similarly, there are clear dangers in applying an Aristotelian vocabulary that arose through a distinction between potential and actual being and a derivation of teleology from the striving of all things to imitate the eternal, both of which have no place in early Chinese thought. At the same time, there surely is some value in maintaining a vocabulary consistent with earlier translations, and one might plausibly argue that the interests of intercultural philosophy are served by bringing a text like the Mencius into the terms of European philosophy in order to allow for dialogue, as, for example, those working on an intercultural approach to virtue ethics have done. At root, one basic question emerges from Behuniak's concern with translation-- can terms http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Philosophy East and West University of Hawai'I Press

The Other Side of Zen: A Social History of Sōtō Zen Buddhism in Tokugawa Japan (review)

Philosophy East and West , Volume 57 (4) – Oct 24, 2007

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2007 University of Hawai'i Press. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1529-1898
Publisher site
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Abstract

``forces,'' and dao as ``most productive course.'' These translations can be disorienting and even frustrating for someone familiar with other translations, but this disorientation cannot but be a good thing: why do we pursue intercultural philosophy if not to render the familiar and obvious more strange and disorienting? At the very least, the issues of translation raised by Behuniak must be addressed and taken seriously. Surely he is right that translating xing as ``nature'' has misleading connotations. Similarly, there are clear dangers in applying an Aristotelian vocabulary that arose through a distinction between potential and actual being and a derivation of teleology from the striving of all things to imitate the eternal, both of which have no place in early Chinese thought. At the same time, there surely is some value in maintaining a vocabulary consistent with earlier translations, and one might plausibly argue that the interests of intercultural philosophy are served by bringing a text like the Mencius into the terms of European philosophy in order to allow for dialogue, as, for example, those working on an intercultural approach to virtue ethics have done. At root, one basic question emerges from Behuniak's concern with translation-- can terms

Journal

Philosophy East and WestUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Oct 24, 2007

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