Chinese Buddhist Religious Disputation

Argumentation 11 (2):195-209 (1997)
Abstract
From about the fourth to the tenth century Buddhist monks in China engaged in formal, semi-public, religious disputation. I describe the Indian origins of this disputation and outline its settings, procedures, and functions. I then propose that this disputation put its participants at risk of performative contradiction with Buddhist tenets about language and salvation, and I illustrate how some chinese Buddhists attempted to transcend these contradictions, subverting disputation through creative linguistic and extra- linguistic strategies
Keywords Disputation  dialectic  logic  China  Buddhism  India  performative contradiction  Chan  Zen
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