17. “Spiritual Exercise” and Buddhist Epistemologists in India and Tibet

  1. Steven M. Emmanuel
  1. Matthew T. Kapstein

Published Online: 5 FEB 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118324004.ch17

A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy

A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy

How to Cite

Kapstein, M. T. (2013) “Spiritual Exercise” and Buddhist Epistemologists in India and Tibet, in A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy (ed S. M. Emmanuel), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118324004.ch17

Author Information

  1. École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris, France

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 5 FEB 2013
  2. Published Print: 25 MAR 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470658772

Online ISBN: 9781118324004



  • Buddhist epistemologists;
  • India;
  • philosophy;
  • spiritual exercise;
  • Tibet


Though Stcherbatsky was eager to present Buddhist logic as broadly consistent with an early twentieth-century European vision of philosophical research as critical reason unbridled by the presuppositions of religion, this was certainly not the sole source of the tension found in his words. There were at least three major trends in relation to this problematic that can be identified within Buddhist textual traditions. This chapter explores somewhat the elaboration of these alternatives, both in traditional Buddhist and in contemporary academic writings. Against those who have held, however, that the available evidence does not permit us to conclude that there was any interesting relationship between the Buddhist pramāna tradition and those Buddhist intellectual practices that we might characterize as “spiritual exercise,” the author would argue that the very presence of contestation about this within the tradition itself sufficiently demonstrates that the possibilities of such a relationship were well understood.