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What I Know and Don't Know: A Christian Reflects on Buddhist Practice

What I Know and Don't Know: A Christian Reflects on Buddhist Practice CHRISTIAN RESPONSES TO BUDDHIST SPIRITUAL PRACTICE Mary Frohlich Catholic Theological Union To reflect and write on spiritual practice for publication in an academic journal requires a delicate balancing act. It is not appropriate simply to recount one's experience; nor is it appropriate merely to theorize. I am assisted in this balancing act by a set of categories proposed some years ago by Walter Principe and generally accepted as standard now within the academic field of spirituality. Principe observed that spirituality operates on three interrelated yet distinct levels and that it is crucial for the academician to be clear about which level or levels are being presented. The three are: (1) experience; (2) articulation within wisdom traditions; (3) academic interpretation.1 My understanding of what is desired in the present context is some of all three but with a primary emphasis on the second. What does Buddhist practice look like from my stance within my Christian "wisdom traditions"? Thus, this is the horizon within which I will present both experience and academic insights. First a bit of autobiographical context. I became a Christian as a young adult, after having been raised in a secular humanist household. My first attempts at http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Buddhist-Christian Studies University of Hawai'I Press

What I Know and Don't Know: A Christian Reflects on Buddhist Practice

Buddhist-Christian Studies , Volume 21 (1) – Jan 1, 2001

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2001 The University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1527-9472
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Abstract

CHRISTIAN RESPONSES TO BUDDHIST SPIRITUAL PRACTICE Mary Frohlich Catholic Theological Union To reflect and write on spiritual practice for publication in an academic journal requires a delicate balancing act. It is not appropriate simply to recount one's experience; nor is it appropriate merely to theorize. I am assisted in this balancing act by a set of categories proposed some years ago by Walter Principe and generally accepted as standard now within the academic field of spirituality. Principe observed that spirituality operates on three interrelated yet distinct levels and that it is crucial for the academician to be clear about which level or levels are being presented. The three are: (1) experience; (2) articulation within wisdom traditions; (3) academic interpretation.1 My understanding of what is desired in the present context is some of all three but with a primary emphasis on the second. What does Buddhist practice look like from my stance within my Christian "wisdom traditions"? Thus, this is the horizon within which I will present both experience and academic insights. First a bit of autobiographical context. I became a Christian as a young adult, after having been raised in a secular humanist household. My first attempts at

Journal

Buddhist-Christian StudiesUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Jan 1, 2001

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