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Consciousness and Self-awareness

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Abstract:

In this paper I propose to inquire into the theory of self-awareness propounded by the two Buddhist epistemologists, Dignaga and Dharmakirti. I first give an outline of the Buddhist notion of consciousness, then deal with the notion of objectual appearance, and finally dwell on the theory itself together with certain arguments in its favor. It is shown that the Buddhists subscribed themselves to the following self-awareness thesis: that our waking consciousness is always pre-reflectively and nonconceptually aware of itself. Adopting an approach of interpretive and comparative analysis, I also clarify significant differences between the theory and the correspondent Cartesian views in order to reveal the theory's contemporary relevancy.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09552360701625460

Publication date: November 1, 2007

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