This fascinating and invative mograph explores the relationship between the philosophical underpinnings of Advaita Vedanta, Zen Buddhism and the experiential journey of spiritual practitioners. Taking the perspective of the questioning student, the author highlights the experiential deconstructive processes that are ignited when students everyday dualistic thought structures are challenged by the n-dual nature of these teachings and practices. Although Advaita Vedanta and Zen Buddhism are ontologically different, this unique study shows that in the dynamics of the practice situation they are phemelogically similar. Distinctive in scope and approach Advaita Vedanta and Zen Buddhism: Deconstructive Modes of Spiritual Inquiry examines Advaita and Zen as living practice traditions in which foundational n-dual philosophies are shown in action in contemporary Western practice situations thus linking abstract philosophical tenets to concrete living experience. As such it takes an important step toward bridging the gap between scholarly analysis and the experiential reality of these spiritual practices.
Dr Leesa S. Davis is a sessional lecturer in Philosophy and Religious Studies at Deakin University, Australia, and a member of the Australasian Buddhist Studies Association.