A Buddhist Theory of Semiotics: Signs, Ontology, and by Fabio Rambelli

By Fabio Rambelli

One of many first makes an attempt ever to give in a scientific method a non-western semiotic procedure. This e-book appears at jap esoteric Buddhism and is predicated round unique texts, expert by means of specific and rigorous semiotic different types. it's a designated advent to special features of the idea and rituals of the japanese Shingon tradition.

Semiotic matters are deeply ingrained within the Buddhist highbrow and non secular discourse, starting with the concept the area isn't what apparently to be, which demands a extra exact knowing of the self and fact. This in flip leads to sustained discussions at the prestige of language and representations, and at the chance and strategies to understand fact past fantasy; such strange wisdom is explicitly outlined as enlightenment. hence, for Buddhism, semiotics is at once proper to salvation; this can be a key element that's usually missed even through Buddhologists. This ebook discusses extensive the most parts of Buddhist semiotics as established totally on unique eastern pre-modern resources. it's a an important e-book within the fields of semiotics and non secular stories.

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Extra resources for A Buddhist Theory of Semiotics: Signs, Ontology, and Salvation in Japanese Esoteric Buddhism (Continuum Advances in Semiotics)

Example text

The third mode understands reality as it really is, in its perfect and true form (Sk. pariniṣpanna, Jp. enjōjitsu); it is a glimpse of Suchness (Sk. tathatā, Jp. shinnyo). There is a deep semiotic awareness in these three cognitive modes. They presuppose a distinction between an entity’s mental image (Jp. omokage), its external appearance (gyō), its semiotic configuration (sō), its material substance (tai), and its essence or nature (shō). Deluded vision focuses only on appearance and signs; the co-dependent outlook goes beyond semiotic configurations to attain the substance; the perfect mode makes one realize the nature of things.

Dharmakāya, Jp. hosshin). In other words, the entire universe, as the supreme body of the Buddha, preaches the Dharma and leads beings to salvation. While classical Mahayana schools describe the Dharma-body as devoid of signs and forms, Esoteric Buddhism conceives of it as the totality of all possible signs. The Dharma-body is thus able to “speak” and explain its own enlightenment to all beings; an absolute language exists that in some way is able to convey the ultimate reality, and a particular semiotics governs such absolute language.

Adamantine signs After this introduction to the theoretical framework of the discourse of Esoteric Buddhism in its relations to other Buddhist schools, and an outline of Buddhist signs as they are employed in the representation of the sacred, it is now time to turn our attention to the internal structure of the exo-esoteric episteme. A full description of its actual articulation should take into account the diachronic transformation of Buddhist semiotics, the complex epistemic relations within Buddhism as both a “high” culture and a “popular” phenomenon, and the presence of other influential models of semiotics and semiosis (Confucian, Daoist, and later, “Western”) that coexisted and interacted in various ways with and within the kenmitsu epistemic field.

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