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The Monk and the Philosopher : A Father and Son Discuss the Meaning of Life

Jean-Francois Revel, Matthieu Ricard, John Canti (Translator), Jack Miles (Preface)

Buy this book at Amazon.com or try Amazon.co.uk in England, Amazon.ca in Canada, Amazon.de in Germany, Amazon.fr in France, Amazon.it in Italy, Amazon.es in Spain. ASIN=0805211039, Category: Philosophy, Language: E, cover: PB, pages: 351, year: 2000. Zu Facebook hinzufügen Zu Twitter hinzufügen Zu Delicious hinzufügen Zu Google +1 hinzufügen Zu Google hinzufügen Zu Mister Wong hinzufügen

The philosoph JFR discusses with his son MR, a Tibetan monk, the age-old debate between reason and faith. Western culture confronts Eastern concepts of spiritual experience.

Review © (2004) by interesting-books-selector.com

The Dalai Lama favours democracy and hopes for a independent democratic Tibet, but quote MR (p234/5):
    "Should Tibetan people ever opt for violence by a democratically determined decision, he [the Dalai Lama] has made it clear that he would completely withdraw from political life."
- even in case of violent resistance against the enduring Chinese occupation (see p237).

I'm unable to understand, how an outspoken democratic political leader could treathen with his resignation, should the majority vote against his convictions! To me that means the Dalai Lama is against democracy, which would support the current controversy in Western civilization, Democracy: The God that Failed by Hans-Hermann Hoppe.

The conclusion, quote MR (p351):

    "But no dialogue, however enlightening it might be, could ever be a substitute for the silence of personal experience, so indispensable for an understanding of how things really are."

seems to contradict the book itself which consists of 351 pages of philosophic dialogue. I'd nevertheless recommend reading this book. When I finished it, I ordered several more books about Tibetan Buddhism in the hope to discover more irrefutable logic thinking like the Buddhist disproof of the existence of an all-powerful Creator; quote MR (p105):

    "Either the Creator doesn't 'decide' to create, in which case all-powerfullness is lost, for creation happens outside his will; or he creates voluntarily, in which case he can't be all-powerful, either, as he is creating under the influence of his desire to create."
But not only striking logic appeals in Buddhism, as Bertrand Russell remarked in What is an Agnostic?, quote:
    "Of the great religions of history, I prefer Buddhism, especially in its earliest forms, because it has had the smallest element of persecution."
Buddhism promises happiness for everybody without the need for "Novus Ordo Seculorum".
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