In both Christianity and Buddhism, there has long been a conflict between the learned study of doctrine and spiritual practice, or between theology and spirituality. This tension is informed by a deeper tension between the immanence and transcendence of the divine or the ultimate, and different modes of discourse on it–positive (cataphatic) and negative (apophatic).
Those who advocate scriptural and theoretical study insist that the nature of the ultimate is effable, and intellectual exercises involving the use of language can be of use to soteriological ends–to union with the divine in Christianity or enlightenment to the ultimate reality in Buddhism. On the other hand, there have been others who concentrate on meditation and spirituality with an emphasis on gaining first-hand experience of the divine or ultimate reality. Some who emphasize spiritual (or meditative) life discount intellectual efforts; they doubt the efficacy of learning and study of scriptures and doctrines.
In spite of this tension between the intellectual and spiritual, both of them have contributed to forming, developing, and sustaining religious traditions. Acknowledging significant contributions made by both intellectual study and spiritual practice, some religious adepts have striven to integrate both ways. This dissertation will explore in detail two of these efforts, one by Saint Bonaventure of Bagnoregio (c.1217-1274)–a Franciscan theologian, and Pojo Chinul (1158- 1210)–a Korean Soˇn (or Zen) master. Both of them held that the balanced incorporation of theoria into praxis would more efficiently advance a practitioner toward union with God or enlightenment. Through the comparative study of these two attempts to synthesize learning and practice, I will examine the nature of these tensions–that between theoria and praxis and between cataphasis and apophasis–and will consider the interrelationship between the two tensions. I will also analyze how the distinctive doctrines of the two religions shape their respective views of the theoria/praxis and cataphasis/apophasis dynamics.
|School:||University of Notre Dame|
|School Location:||United States -- Indiana|
|Source:||DAI-A 80/06(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Theology, Comparative religion, Spirituality|
|Keywords:||Bonaventure, Cataphasis and apophasis, Chinul, Comparative theology, Franciscan studies, Korean hinduism|
Copyright in each Dissertation and Thesis is retained by the author. All Rights Reserved
The supplemental file or files you are about to download were provided to ProQuest by the author as part of a
dissertation or thesis. The supplemental files are provided "AS IS" without warranty. ProQuest is not responsible for the
content, format or impact on the supplemental file(s) on our system. in some cases, the file type may be unknown or
may be a .exe file. We recommend caution as you open such files.
Copyright of the original materials contained in the supplemental file is retained by the author and your access to the
supplemental files is subject to the ProQuest Terms and Conditions of use.
Depending on the size of the file(s) you are downloading, the system may take some time to download them. Please be