Intelligent Design Religion Science

Is Buddhism more “scientific” than other spiritual traditions?

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From astrophysicist Adam Frank at NPR:

Sharf has no problem with the creative misreading that allows Buddhist Modernism to share space with scientific worldviews. “My concern,” he told Tricycle, “is not with the selectivity of those who read Buddhism as a rationalist and scientific religion — it is perfectly understandable given the world in which we live. It is really not a question of misreading. It is a question of what gets lost in the process.”

Part of the problem for Sharf and others is that by focusing only on the domains of inner experience (i.e. mindfulness via contemplative practice), Buddhist Modernism loses aspects of its function that were central to its history. “Look at how suspicious many Western Buddhists are of religious ritual,” he says in the Tricycle interview, “… when we downplay ritual, we risk weakening our bonds to community and tradition. That’s a pretty major loss.”

But just as important for both Sharf and Lopez are the tensions that they think should exist between the Buddhist and Western worldviews. More.

Actually, Frank’s way of looking at the problem is out of date. In an age when objectivity is sexist and math is dehumanizing, science is bound to end up the big loser.

See also: How naturalism rots science from the head down

and

The Big Bang: Put simply,the facts are wrong.

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5 Replies to “Is Buddhism more “scientific” than other spiritual traditions?

  1. 1
    Latemarch says:

    Sharf is specific in terms of the challenge he thinks Buddhism presents the sciences’ presumed philosophical basis. “In order to make Buddhism compatible with science,” Sharf says, “Buddhist Modernism … accepts a Cartesian dualistic understanding of the world.” This Cartesian separation would, he claims, be pretty weird to most Buddhist teachers throughout its history. As he puts it:

    “Traditional Buddhist epistemology, for example, simply does not accept the Cartesian notion of an insurmountable gap between mind and matter. Most Buddhist philosophies hold that mind and object arise interdependently, so there is no easy way to separate one’s understanding of the world from the world itself.”

    There is apparently no spiritual tradition that the “sciences”(read a/mat) won’t attempt to corrupt. Buddhism is a monism. All is one. To turn it into a dualism is to destroy it.

  2. 2
    Dionisio says:

    It’s kind of interesting to see a self proclaimed Buddhist praying. To whom?

  3. 3
    Dionisio says:

    Jesus made Prince Buddha.
    But He let us believe it or not.
    It’s up to us.
    One day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Christ is Lord.
    But the it will be too late for those who didn’t choose to follow Him now.
    Run to Him.
    Don’t wait more.
    He’s the Way, the Truth and the Life.
    Veritas vos liberabit

  4. 4
    Dionisio says:

    @3 error
    Fifth sentence:
    But the…
    Must be:
    But then…

  5. 5
    Barry Arrington says:

    Is Buddhism more scientific than Christianity? Of course it is. Which is why science arise in the Buddhist East and not in the Christian West. Duh.

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