Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/20975
Title: Desire: A comparative Study of Levinasian Concept of desire and Buddhist Concept of Desire
Authors: REV RALUWE PADMASIRI THERO
Keywords: A COMPARATIVE STUDY, DESIRE, lEVINASIAN, BUDDHISM
Issue Date: 19-May-2010
Source: REV RALUWE PADMASIRI THERO (2010-05-19). Desire: A comparative Study of Levinasian Concept of desire and Buddhist Concept of Desire. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: One of the key concepts Emmanuel Levinas utilizes is that of desire with a radically new meaning. He sees desire as a metaphysical relation which transcends traditional account of desire as a personal, subjective emotion. In this way he identifies a new structure of relation in which man cannot be reduced to a mere object of desire by the subject. Likewise, the final emancipation and the notion of the liberated personality that Buddhism proposes transcend the constraints of subjectivism. The arahant is considered as a person who acts not based on his individual needs but from others as he has transcended individual constraints such as greed, hatred, and delusion. He clearly displays a radically different behavior from a mundane person according to Buddhism. Both analyses present radically different views to the prevailing systems of philosophy in India and Europe respectively. In the final analysis, the main idea seems to be that disregarding the value of the other human being is not natural. The original nature of man is not individualistic. In this sense, the Buddha and arahants are considered to be fully devoted to others? wellbeing as they have reconstructed their personality and reached a realization in which mere individuality is dissolved and the desire for others? well being takes a centre stage. Here, desire can be said to have taken an ethical turn though ethics here is radically different from traditional ethics. My view is that irrespective of some differences easily found in the two traditions, the most common and significant aspect of both is the emphasis placed on the necessity of reforming human personality on a new philosophic ground. In this new philosophic ground, desire plays a creative role.
URI: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/20975
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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