Towards What Can’t Be Said: Exploring the Limitations of Language in Zen Philosophy

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dc.contributor.author Fitzsimmons, John
dc.date.accessioned 2023-03-19T07:29:23Z
dc.date.available 2023-03-19T07:29:23Z
dc.date.copyright 2023 en_US
dc.date.issued 2023-03-19
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1828/14901
dc.description.abstract This research project aims to explore the relationship between language and experience as understood by the Zen philosophical tradition. Specifically, I draw on the thought of Kyoto school philosophers Nishida Kitarō and Ueda Shizuteru, who pay close attention to the dangers and limitations of language, as well as Zen-informed strategies for overcoming language’s tendency to “cage” or “sediment” experience into abstractions. Together, they provide a picture of philosophical dialogue that emphasizes the creative, the playful, and the poetic, often avoiding "literal" philosophical definitions in order to prevent linguistic illusions from taking hold. To illustrate how these principles may benefit philosophical dialogues even outside of Zen contexts, I consider Heidegger's "A Dialogue on Language" as a potential example of a philosophical exchange that uses a creative, Zen-informed approach in order to communicate ideas that would otherwise be "unsayable." en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Awards (JCURA) en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.subject zen en_US
dc.subject language en_US
dc.subject philosophy en_US
dc.title Towards What Can’t Be Said: Exploring the Limitations of Language in Zen Philosophy en_US
dc.type Poster en_US
dc.description.scholarlevel Undergraduate en_US
dc.description.reviewstatus Reviewed en_US

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