What are we to make of Western Buddhism? Glenn Wallis argues that in aligning their tradition with
the contemporary self-help industry, Western Buddhists evade the consequences of Buddhist thought. This book shows that with concepts such as vanishing, nihility, extinction, contingency, and
no-self, Buddhism, like all potent systems of thought, articulates a notion of the “real.” Raw, unflinching acceptance of this real is held by Buddhism to be at the very core of human “awakening.”
Yet these preeminent human truths are universally shored up against in contemporary Buddhist practice, which contradicts the very heart of Buddhism.
The author's critique of Western Buddhism is threefold. It is immanent, in emerging out of Buddhist thought but taking it beyond what it itself publicly concedes; negative, in employing the “democratizing” deconstructive methods of François Laruelle's non-philosophy; and re-descriptive, in applying Laruelle's concept of philofiction. Through applying resources of Continental philosophy to Western Buddhism, A Critique of Western Buddhism suggests a possible practice for our time, an "anthropotechnic", or religion transposed from its seductive, but misguiding, idealist haven.
Introduction: Raise the Curtain on the Theater of Western Buddhism!
Why Western Buddhism?
Theaters Comforting, Theaters Cruel
1. The Snares of Wisdom
Neoliberal Subjects are Us, Wise and Well
2. Specters of the Real
The Rhetorical Unconscious
The Principle of Sufficient Buddhism
3. First Names of the Buddhist Real
François Laruelle and Non-Philosophy
A Science of Buddhism
5. Immanent Practice
The Great Feast of Knowledge
Thinking from the Real-One
Interlude: The Immanence of an Actual Suffering
The Deliverance of Fiction
A Buddhism without a Past
7. Meditation in Ruin
Register now for "Contemporary French Philosophy: A Primer," with Gabriel Rockhill.
New post, "Immanent Critique for the People!" on Lodro Rinzler's boutique meditation organization MNDFL at Speculative Non-Buddhism.
"Varieties of Buddhist Healing," with Pierce Salguero is postponed until May. Stay tuned.