Introduction: Masao Maruyama -- Analyzing the causes of the fifteen year war -- Creating modern man: the basis of national security -- Establishing political realism: guidance to national security -- Advocating unarmed neutrality -- Defending democracy: a prerequisite of national security -- Conclusion: predicting the second defeat.
THE PROBLEM OF EVIL IN CHRISTIANITY AND BUDDHISM ABSTRACT In his prolegomena to “the problem of evil in Christianity and Buddhism” Masao Abe compares how Christianity and Buddhism explain the conflict between good and evil, the absolute ethical imperative to do good and avoid evil, and the problem that human beings inevitably fail to comply with that imperative. Abe argues that Buddhism and Christianity agree on the absoluteness of the imperative, but that Buddhism’s notions of the relativity and interdependence (...) of good and evil and “absolute nothingness” beyond good and evil make intelligible, as Christianity does not, the necessity of evil without undermining the ethical imperative to do good, and solve the problem of the failure of to overcome the duality of good and evil at the ethical level. I explore advantages and disadvantage of the responses of Buddhism and Christianity to the problem of evil, according to Abe’s analysis. I argue that Buddhism enjoys an advantage in dealing with the origin of evil and the conflict between good and evil without the burden of Christianity’s problem of theodicy, but suffers a difficulty in explaining why commitment to the ethical imperative is a prerequisite to enlightenment. Christianity’s identification of the good with God gives an advantage in explaining the relation between the ethical imperative and the religious ultimate, but encounters the problem of explaining the origin of evil. (shrink)
The verb κενόω means ‘to empty’ and St. Paul uses the word ἐκένωσεν writing that ‘Jesus made himself nothing’ and ‘emptied himself’. Śūnyatā is a Buddhist concept most commonly translated as emptiness, nothingness, or nonsubstantiality. An important kenosis–śūnyatā discussion was sparked by Abe Masao’s paper ‘Kenotic God and Dynamic Śūnyatā’. I confront the kenosis–śūnyatā theme with Vattimo’s kenosis-based philosophy of religion. For Vattimo, kenosis refers to ‘secularization’: when strong structures such as the essence and the fulfilment of the Christian (...) message are weakened. Parallels between Abe’s and Vattimo’s thought will be demonstrated with regard to themes current in East–West comparative philosophy: reality and emptiness, the overcoming of metaphysics, the position of the Self, the human and the divine, and the relationship between science and religion. The latter point is particularly timely because since the 1990s religious fundamentalism has pushed forward a curio.. (shrink)