Religion and the Philosophy of Life Series
How do we account for the persistence of religion in human life? To answer this question these lectures will examine the idea of religion in relation to philosophies of life. In particular it will examine the thesis that life itself comes to expression through religions. This entails an empirical claim that the origins of religion can be explained in terms of the evolution of human interactivity, what we call social cognition; a historical claim that philosophies of life have operated within religions in terms of what we might call a transcendent teleology that have continued into secular modernity; and a philosophical claim we can account for the persistence of religion in terms of a realist ontology of life. The three lectures roughly correspond to these interrelated claims.
Taking the theme of the first lecture that life itself comes to expression through religion, the second lecture will illustrate these themes through examining how ‘scholastic’ reflection in India has dealt with the category ‘life’ with particular reference to the realist non-dualism in Abhinavagupta and Kṣemarāja.