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Document Details :
Title: Philosophy, Meditation, and Experience in the Great Debate at Bsam yas
Author(s): ADAM, Martin T.
Journal: Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies
Volume: 39 Date: 2016
In this paper I attempt to explain the contribution of meditation (bhāvanā) to knowledge as it is presented in the Bhāvanākramas. Kamalaśīla’s presentation in these texts makes use of the schema of three wisdoms or prajñās (śrutamayī-, cintāmayī, and bhāvanāmayī-prajñā) and a very specific understanding of the notion of bhūtapratyavekṣā as 'the discernment of reality'. My analysis is framed in the context of a recent controversy concerning the epistemological role of meditation in relation to the views of the opposing sides of the historical debate at Bsam yas. I argue that the Bhāvanākramas assign a necessary and very specific function to conceptual meditation in the process of acquiring a direct, non-conceptual knowledge of reality (nirvikalpajñāna).