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1st Unit : 8th Study Group Session

"Inoue Enryo’s Sogan Theory and Spinozism"

小坂先生の写真  On March 14, 2013, the 1st Unit held a session, inviting Kosaka Kunitsugu, Professor of Nihon University and IRCP visiting researcher, with the theme "Inoue Enryo's Sogan Theory and Spinozism". The session,which was held at Hakusan Campus,Toyo University, was followed by a lively discussion. With more than 20 participants, the session was quite successful. This is a summary of the remarks.

  Along with Kiyozawa Manshi's Yugen Mugen theory and Nishida Kitaro's Junsui Keiken theory, Inoue Enryo's Sogan theory can be traced back to Inoue Tetsujiro's Gensho soku Jitsuzai theory. Fundamentally, Enryo's treatise asserts the principle of the interpenetration of phenomenon and essence (Sogan, or Shonyo Sogan) between the indivisible and unified body of the universe (Ichinyo) and phenomena. However, at the same time, he asserts the interpenetration of phenomenon and essence (Sogan, or Taisho Sogan) between material phenomena and their basis, the substance of physical manifestation (Butsunyo), as well as between mental phenomena and their basis, the substance of mental manifestation (Shinnyo). Moreover, Inoue asserts the interpenetration of Butsunyo and Shinnyo (Nyonyo Sogan), and the interpenetration of physical and mental phenomena (Shosho Sogan). In this sense, the basis and phenomena of the universe is the Sogan relationship of Juju Mujin, the mutual containment and interpenetration of all phenomena. However, here Sogan has diverse meanings. These can be roughly divided into two types: cause and effect relationships, and parallel relationships. Sogan can signify relationship in which the effect is present within the cause, or it can signify the presence of the substance of mental manifestation within the substance of physical manifestation, and vice versa, and the presence of mental phenomena (Shinsho) within material phenomena (Bussho), and vice versa, relationships whose point of view and emphasis differ from that of cause and effect relationships.

聴衆  These relationships can be said to very closely resemble the relationships between substance, attributes, and modes in Spinoza's philosophy. The relationship between the indivisible and unified body of the universe on the one hand and phenomena on the other corresponds to the relationship between Spinoza's substance and mode; the relationship between material phenomena and mental phenomena, to that between the attribute of extension and thought; and the relationship between material basis and material phenomena (mental basis and mental phenomena) to that between extension and substance (thought and mind). Furthermore, although these relationships must be dynamic, that fact that their descriptions are static, that is to say, that they stand in a fundamentally dialectic relationship, is consistent with the fact that they are described according to the law of identity. Viewed in this manner, Inoue's philosophy and Spinozism possess affinities in terms of the immanence of substance (Ichinyo); the parallelism of matter and mind; their nature as logics of essence-function; their non-dialectic, self-identifying logics, etc.; and above all, in terms of the fact that they are logics of religious awakening. Of course, there are many points of divergence: whether one regards reality as empty or substantial; as ceaseless activity or eternal stasis, etc., but fundamentally, Inoue's philosophy can be regarded as a form of Spinozism.