‘Buddhism’ and ‘God’ are powerful ideas which often find themselves in conflict. Many Buddhists interpret Buddhism as atheistic, clearly rejecting God. Many theists, for their part, reject Buddhism because they see true religion as necessarily involving God. Universalists, on the other hand, may see God and Enlightenment as ultimately the same. Who, if anyone, is right?
This book takes none of these approaches at face value, but instead looks behind the competing dogmas. What is the most helpful of the many ways of interpreting both God and Buddhism? What human experiences do these different interpretations relate to? Success in this enquiry depends on disentangling the meanings given to words and maintaining an open attitude. This clear-sighted, thought-provoking book shows how sceptical enquiry and positive engagement with both might be compatible.
Robert M. Ellis is the founder of the Middle Way Society and holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy. He has published books on the Middle Way applied to both Buddhism and Christianity.