Sunday, October 28, 2012

Thursday November 1st

CSRS Public Lecture Series
Are Good Intentions Enough? On the Place of Knowledge in Buddhist Ethics

Speaker: Martin Adam
CSRS Faculty Fellow
Department of Pacific and Asian Studies, UVic

This lecture explores how knowledge is considered to be a virtue in Buddhist thought. Buddhist texts describe “right view” as one of ten courses of wholesome action, a classification that reveals some interesting differences between Buddhist and non-Buddhist understandings of action (karma). What is action? What makes an action good or right? Right view is itself defined as belief in karma and its results, and, for those with higher insight, an understanding of the truth of no-Self. These considerations lead us to conclude that from a Buddhist perspective meditation is a profoundly moral activity, essential to the attainment of the highest good (nirvāṇa).

Martin Adam (PhD McGill University) is director of the Religious Studies Program and professor of Pacific and Asian studies at the University of Victoria. His current research is centred in the area of Buddhist ethics.

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