Religion at the Heart of Philosophical Thought of the Kyoto School
This article is an attempt to show that the Kyoto School of philosophy is inherently a "philosophy of religion". Although philosophers from this school, including Nishida Kitaro and others, have tried to combine western philosophical thinking with Japanese Zen Buddhist thinking, yet the result of their work, apart from creating a space for the emergence of comparative philosophies and cross-cultural studies, is nothing but the expression of religious philosophy. Undoubtedly, all Kyoto School philosophers have discussed religion and God in their writings. This article attempts to illustrate the religious nature of this school by citing theories and concepts of its philosophers, including its founder, Nishida Kitaro, Tanabe Hajime, Nishitani Keiji, and others. Therefore, after discussing the issue of religion in this school in the introduction section, we will discuss the philosophy of religion and the role of religion in the thought of Nishida Kitaro, Tanabe Hajime and Nishitani Keiji respectively. To understand religion and God in the Kyoto School one must understand the concept of absolute nothingness in Zen Buddhist thought among its philosophers. Finally, the article concludes that though the Kyoto School as a universal philosophy is rooted in Eastern Zen Buddhist and Western rational thoughts, the nature of its philosophers' thoughts is religious, albeit different from Christianity and Islam or Judaism. To this end, the author did his best to benefit from the books, papers, and commentaries of Kyoto School philosophers.
Philosophy Of Religion Research , Volume:17 Issue:1, 2019
23 - 42
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