Unravelling Indian ideology and Buddhist wisdom
Chair of the Course of Indian Philosophy and Buddhist Studies
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Enhance your “wisdom” by studying the tradition-rich disciplines of Indian philosophy and Buddhist studies
As globalization surges forward with the development of the market economy, disputes often arise among ethnic groups, which have their own unique cultures. Although the current global society is free from the massive conflicts experienced in the past, disputes among ethnic groups and religions still regularly capture headlines. These could even be said to reflect a wider conflict between the unification of human values and its counter movement to preserve ethnic identity.
In consideration of these conditions, the Course of Indian Philosophy and Buddhist Studies aims to readdress, as a modern issue, the fundamental question of “how human beings should live” by carefully examining the knowledge systems that developed in India from the ancient times to the medieval period before making their way from South Asia to Tibet and the inner Asian countries to East Asia, including China and Japan, and to Southeast Asia and that now serve as a guiding principle for various ethnic and cultural groups.
The course specifically focuses on the various regions and periods of Buddhism, which grew from its roots in India to become a world religion, as well as the ancient Indian ideologies and philosophical systems created by Buddhism and the subsequently developed Hindu religion. Students who wish to conduct research on Buddhism study languages such as Sanskrit, Pali, Classical Tibetan, and Classical Chinese while focusing on the preserved documentary records in those languages. Moreover, students who wish to research Indian studies, including Indian philosophy and culture, conduct research that not only focuses on Sanskrit but also considers Hindi and other modern Indian languages. Although the course centers on documentary research, in today’s age of globalization, it is also necessary to actually visit the places where the events depicted in the texts occurred and experience these environments firsthand.
Owing to rapid advances in electronic equipment, information from our research environment can now be easily obtained. However, it is an unchanging fact that you, as researchers, enable the systematic presentation of knowledge by organizing and processing this deluge of information. Therefore, the Course of Indian Philosophy and Buddhist Studies “aims to nurture individuals with advanced research skills, rich academic knowledge, and the philosophical insight to discover solutions to various real world problems and to contribute toward the future through creative activities.”
* On April 1, 2011, the name of the course was changed to “Course of Indian Philosophy and Buddhist Studies.”
The course covers a broad range of research topics related to Indian philosophy and Buddhist studies, from the ideology and culture of ancient, medieval, and present-day India and the Early Buddhism and Mahayana Buddhism that flourished in India to the new strands of Buddhism created by incorporating the ideas of ethnic groups from various Asian regions.
Participation is not restricted to formal researchers seeking to rigorously investigate original texts: one of our major goals is to cultivate intellectuals with advanced skills who want to work in society while referring to Indian and Buddhist ideologies to guide them in their lives, and therefore, working adults are also welcome to join.
We invite you to come and study with us in a research environment that allows individuals to explore their own questions freely without being restricted to a specific branch of religion.