This talk is made possible with funds from the Alka Siddhartha Dalal Endowment. It is open to the public.
In this presentation, Dr. Jeffery Long will discuss a set of philosophical concepts from the Jain tradition of India and explore the relevance of these concepts to contemporary issues in the philosophy of religion and the philosophy of science.
This presentation will first give an overview of anekāntavāda, the Jain doctrine of the complexity of existence, along with its epistemological and hermeneutical corollaries: nayavāda (the doctrine of perspectives) and syādvāda (the doctrine of conditional predication). These doctrines will be examined within the context of Jain thought and practice. Then their implications for the contemporary philosophy of religion will be explored, specifically within the realm of religious pluralism and with regard to current dialogues between religion and science (and between religious and secular worldviews in general). More broadly speaking, this presentation will be making a case for the importance of cross-cultural philosophy not only for the sake of greater appreciation of diverse cultures, but for the advancement of philosophy as such.
Dr. Jeffery D. Long, the Carl W. Zeigler Professor of Religion, Philosophy, and Asian Studies, specializes in the religions and philosophies of India. He is the author of several books and numerous articles, as well as the editor of the series Explorations in Indic Traditions for Lexington Books. In 2020, he received Elizabethtown College’s Ranck Award for Excellence in Research, and in 2022, his book, Hinduism in America: A Convergence of Worlds, received the Rajinder and Jyoti Gandhi Book Award for Excellence in Theology, Philosophy, and Critical Reflection from the Dharma Academy of North America. He has spoken in numerous venues, both national and international, including Princeton University, Yale University, the University of Chicago, Jawaharlal Nehru University, and Delhi University, and has also given three talks at the United Nations.