Theses Master's

The Problem of Knowledge in the Philosophy of Vijñānavāda

Nhất Hạnh, Thích

The doctrine of Vijñānavāda is a phenomenological approach to the problem of the ultimate reality, tathatā. The term phenomenological here may be understood exactly in the Husserl's sense. Vijñāna is usually interpreted as mind, or cognition, or consciousness. But by using these terms, one is inclined to think of Vijñāna as the subject of cognition, the thinker or knower which exists by itself as an independent mental entity. Actually, Vijñāna. according to the Vijñānavādins. is not this subject of cognition, or this thinker or knower. Such a mental entity which exists independently from its object is not possible in the doctrine of Vijñānavāda; Vijñāna includes in itself the subject and the object of cognition. This concept is by no means the foundation of a subjectivistic idealism. Cognition is always cognition of something, there can not be cognition all by itself. This basic principle must be kept in mind if one is to understand the doctrine of Vijñānavāda at all.

Alternative forms of the author's name: Thich Nhat Hanh; Nguyễn Xuân Bao; Nguyen Xuan Bao


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More About This Work

Academic Units
M.A., Columbia University
Published Here
April 26, 2023