44. Diversity Matters

Buddhist Reflections on the Meaning of Difference

  1. Steven M. Emmanuel
  1. Peter D. Hershock

Published Online: 5 FEB 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118324004.ch44

A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy

A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy

How to Cite

Hershock, P. D. (2013) Diversity Matters, in A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy (ed S. M. Emmanuel), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118324004.ch44

Author Information

  1. East–West Center in Honolulu, Hawai'i, USA

Publication History

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

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470658772

Online ISBN: 9781118324004



  • Buddhism;
  • diversity;
  • karma;
  • nonduality


This chapter employs Buddhist conceptions of karma and nonduality to generate movement oblique to the ontologically freighted opposition of sameness and difference – opening a “middle way” beyond the contrariety of modern valorizations of global unification and postmodern valorizations of free variation. In doing so, the author's aim is both conceptual clarification and critical integration. If modern and postmodern valorizations of autonomy have been crucial to empowering distinctive responses to social, economic, political, and cultural coercion, a non-dualistic conception of diversity has potential for strengthening and more equitably orienting the interdependence of these spheres – a value for relational transformation from the personal sphere to the environmental.