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Rick Repetti
Kingsborough Community College (CUNY)
  1. Recent Buddhist Theories of Free Will: Compatibilism, Incompatibilism, and Beyond.Rick Repetti - 2014 - Journal of Buddhist Ethics 21:279-352.
    Critical review of Buddhist theories of free will published between 2000 and 2014.
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  2. Buddhist Hard Determinism: No Self, No Free Will, No Responsibility.Rick Repetti - 2012 - Journal of Buddhist Ethics 19:130-197.
    A critical review of Charles Goodman's view about Buddhism and free will to the effect that Buddhism is hard determinist, basically because he thinks Buddhist causation is definitively deterministic, and he thinks determinism is definitively incompatible with free will, but especially because he thinks Buddhism is equally definitively clear on the non-existence of a self, from which he concludes there cannot be an autonomous self.
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  3. Meditation and Mental Freedom: A Buddhist Theory of Free Will.Rick Repetti - 2010 - Journal of Buddhist Ethics 17:166-212.
    I argue for a possible Buddhist theory of free will that combines Frankfurt's hierarchical analysis of meta-volitional/volitional accord with elements of the Buddhist eightfold path that prescribe that Buddhist aspirants cultivate meta-volitional wills that promote the mental freedom that culminates in enlightenment, as well as a causal/functional analysis of how Buddhist meditative methodology not only plausibly makes that possible, but in ways that may be applied to undermine Galen Strawson's impossibility argument, along with most of the other major arguments for (...)
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  4. Earlier Buddhist Theories of Free Will: Compatibilism.Rick Repetti - 2010 - Journal of Buddhist Ethics 17:279-310.
    A critical review of the first wave of publications on Buddhism and free will between the 1960s and 1980s.
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  5. Buddhist Reductionism and Free Will: Paleo-Compatibilism.Rick Repetti - 2012 - Journal of Buddhist Ethics 19:33-95.
    A critical review of Mark Siderits's arguments in support of a compatibilist Buddhist theory of free will based on early Abhidharma reductionism and the two-truths distinction between conventional and ultimate truths or reality, which theory he terms 'paleo-compatibilism'. The Buddhist two-truths doctrine is basically analogous to Sellers' distinction between the manifest and scientific images, in which case the argument is that determinism is a claim about ultimate reality, whereas personhood and agency are about conventional reality, both discourse domains are semantically (...)
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  6.  23
    A Defense of Buddhism, Meditation, and Free Will: A Theory of Mental Freedom.Rick Repetti - 2020 - Zygon 55 (2):540-564.
    This is my response to the criticisms of Gregg Caruso, David Cummiskey, and Karin Meyers, in their roles as members of the “Author Meets Critics” panel devoted to my book, Buddhism, Meditation, and Free Will: A Theory of Mental Freedom at the 2019 annual meeting of the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association, organized by Christian Coseru. Caruso's main objection is that I am not sufficiently attentive to details of opposing arguments in Western philosophy, and Cummiskey's and Meyers’ objections, (...)
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  7. Buddhist Perspectives on Free Will: Agentless Agency?Rick Repetti (ed.) - 2016 - London, UK: Routledge / Francis & Taylor.
    A collection of essays, mostly original, on the actual and possible positions on free will available to Buddhist philosophers, by Christopher Gowans, Rick Repetti, Jay Garfield, Owen Flanagan, Charles Goodman, Galen Strawson, Susan Blackmore, Martin T. Adam, Christian Coseru, Marie Friquegnon, Mark Siderits, Ben Abelson, B. Alan Wallace, Peter Harvey, Emily McRae, and Karin Meyers, and a Foreword by Daniel Cozort.
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  8. Meditation Matters: Replies to the Anti-McMindfulness Bandwagon!Rick Repetti & and Adam Burke Ron Purser, David Forbes - 2016 - In David Forbes Ron Purser (ed.), Handbook of Mindfulness: Culture, Context and Social Engagement. New Work, USA: Springer. pp. 473-494.
    A critical reply to the anti-mindfulness critics in the collection, who oppose the popular secularized adoption of mindfulness on various grounds (it is not Buddhism, it is Buddhism, it is a tool of neo-capitalist exploitation, etc.), I argue that mindfulness is a quality of consciousness, opposite mindlessness, that may be cultivated through practice, and is almost always beneficial to those who cultivate it.
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  9. Jay L. Garfield, Engaging Buddhism: Why It Matters to Philosophy. [REVIEW]Rick Repetti - 2015 - Science, Religion and Culture 2 (2):1-6.
    Book review of Jay Garfield's Engaging Buddhism: Why It Matters to Philosophy.
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  10. The Case for a Contemplative Philosophy of Education.Rick Repetti - 2010 - New Directions for Community Colleges 151:5-15.
    I argue for the use of contemplative practices, such as meditation, journaling, reflection, etc., as an adjunct or alternative form of pedagogy that can help enrich student engagement, facilitate the creation of a philosophical mind state, and engender intrinsic curiosity and related psychological and/or motivational qualities that are supportive of educational ideals. I report on my own scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) research performed in my philosophy classes, as a case study in point. I found that the more times (...)
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  11.  13
    Freedom of the Mind: Buddhist Soft Compatibilism.Rick Repetti - 2020 - Philosophy East and West 70 (1):174-195.
    In this essay, I argue that an analysis of the mind-control skills exhibited by Buddhist meditation experts may be used to formulate a theory of mental freedom, Buddhist Soft Compatibilism, that includes not only freedom of the will but the freedoms of emotion, attention, perception, the self, and all voluntary phenomena. BSC is compatible with determinism, indeterminism, the various Buddhist conceptions of causation, and the Buddhist conception of the self.The structure of my essay is as follows. First, I review the (...)
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  12.  2
    Buddhism, Meditation, and Free Will : A Theory of Mental Freedom.Rick Repetti (ed.) - 2018 - Routledge.
    Traditionally, Buddhist philosophy has seemingly rejected the autonomous self. In Western philosophy, free will and the philosophy of action are established areas of research. This book presents a comprehensive analytical review of extant scholarship on perspectives on free will. It studies and refutes the most powerful Western and Buddhist philosophical objections to free will and explores the possibility that a form of agency may in fact exist within Buddhism. Providing a detailed explanation of how Buddhist meditation increases self-regulative mind-control abilities, (...)
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  13. The Counterfactual Theory of Free Will: A Genuinely Deterministic Form of Soft Determinism.Rick Repetti - 2010 - Saarbrücken, Germany: LAP Lambert Academic Publishing.
    I argue for a soft compatibilist theory of free will, i.e., such that free will is compatible with both determinism and indeterminism, directly opposite hard incompatibilism, which holds free will incompatible both with determinism and indeterminism. My intuitions in this book are primarily based on an analysis of meditation, but my arguments are highly syncretic, deriving from many fields, including behaviorism, psychology, conditioning and deconditioning theory, philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, simulation theory, etc. I offer a causal/functional analysis of (...)
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  14. Buddhist Meditation and the Possibility of Freedom.Rick Repetti - 2016 - Science, Religion and Culture 2 (2):81-98.
    I argue that if the claims Buddhist philosophy makes about meditation virtuosos are plausible, then Buddhism may rebut most of the strongest arguments for free will skepticism found in Western analytic philosophy, including the hard incompatiblist's argument (which combines the arguments for hard determinism, such as the consequence argument, with those for hard indeterminism, such as the randomness argument), Pereboom's manipulation argument, and Galen Strawson's impossibility argument. The main idea is that the meditation virtuoso can cultivate a level of mind (...)
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  15.  21
    Christian Coseru, Perceiving Reality: Consciousness, Intentionality, and Cognition in Buddhist Philosophy. Reviewed By.Rick Repetti - 2015 - Philosophy in Review 35 (4):191-193.
    This work focuses on a narrow Buddhist epistemological tradition that begins with the Abhidharma philosopher Vasubandhu’s analyses of perception and is developed by Dignāga, Dharmakīrti, Kamalaśīla, and Śāntarakṣita. Coseru explains how Buddhist epistemology evolved in dialogue with competing conceptions internal to Buddhism and against orthodox Indian philosophies, particularly Nyāya and Mīmāṃsā. Coseru’s main argument is that although widespread interpretations of Buddhist epistemology are foundationalist, a more useful way to understand it is as a form of phenomenology consistent with enactivism and (...)
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  16. Peter Boghossian, A Manual for Creating Atheists. [REVIEW]Rick Repetti - 2014 - Science, Religion and Culture 1 (2):93-96.
    Book review of Peter Boghossian, A Manual for Creating Atheists, Pitchstone Publishing, 2013, 280pp., $14.95, ISBN 978-1939578099 (paperback). Foreword by Michael Shermer. Science, Religion & Culture 1:2 (August 2014), 93-96 .
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  17. Reply to Steven Cahn’s ‘The Ethics of Teaching: A Puzzle.Rick Repetti - 2004 - APA Newsletter on Teaching Philosophy 3 (2):18-19.
    Steven Cahn posed a puzzle in this issue of the APA Newsletter on Teaching Philosophy, asking whether philosophy professors are morally obliged to reason students out of presumably irrational religious beliefs, by analogy with a hypothetical case in which a young person has been led to believe she has a magnanimous uncle who she never met but who has the wherewithal to watch over her life from afar and protect her. I responded in a nuanced manner, but basically emphasizing that (...)
     
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  18. The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Meditation.Rick Repetti (ed.) - forthcoming
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  19. What Do Buddhists Think About Free Will?Rick Repetti - 2017 - In Jake H. Davis (ed.), In A Mirror Is for Reflection: Understanding Buddhist Ethics, edited by Jake Davis. New York, USA: Oxford University Press. pp. 257-275.
    A critical overview to the bulk of extant Buddhist theories of free will.
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