Ch'an buddhism, western thought, and the concept of substance

Inquiry 14 (1-4):84 – 101 (1971)
Abstract
The article relates Ch'an Buddhism, to Western thought via the philosophy of Spinoza, in particular through the concept of substance. It shows that Spinoza abandoned this concept as a fundamental metaphysical one. The consequent reuse of ?substance? requires a re?examination of the concepts of property and identity. It is seen that Spinoza made this drastic break with Western tradition by experiencing egolessness, the psychological basis for his metaphysical moves. The move is illustrated by the development of quantum physics. Egolessness and a rethinking of identity are basic to a feeling for, if not an understanding of, Ch'an Buddhism
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