Getting and Giving

Andy Rotman

in Thus I Have Seen

Published in print November 2008 | ISBN: 9780195366150
Published online January 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780199867882 | DOI:
Getting and Giving

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Chapter 2 explores the contrast between śraddhā and bhakti. While bhakti is portrayed in the Divyāvadāna as a false confidence in divine forces, śraddhā is represented as a mental state that arises with regard to trustworthy individuals and with regard to certain “indirect objects” whose truth is professed by those trustworthy individuals. The practice of śraddhā begins with a visual confirmation of the truth of certain objects and phenomena, and it culminates in the making of offerings. This connection between seeing and giving, with śraddhā as the mediator, results in an epistemological and ethical formulation that engages the problem of karmic materialism. The chapter then discusses the idea of a gold standard of the karmic system, a method of conversion between merit and money, and what it means for the Buddhist believer.

Keywords: śraddhā; bhakti; seeing; giving; karmic materialism; merit; money

Chapter.  10539 words. 

Subjects: Buddhism

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