•  1087
    Social Imaginaries in Debate
    with Suzi Adams, Jeremy Smith, Natalie Doyle, and Paul Blokker
    Social Imaginaries 1 (1): 15-52. 2015.
    A collaborative article by the Editorial Collective of Social Imaginaries. Investigations into social imaginaries have burgeoned in recent years. From ‘the capitalist imaginary’ to the ‘democratic imaginary’, from the ‘ecological imaginary’ to ‘the global imaginary’ – and beyond – the social imaginaries field has expanded across disciplines and beyond the academy. The recent debates on social imaginaries and potential new imaginaries reveal a recognisable field and paradigm-in-the-making. We arg…Read more
  •  806
    Reiner Schürmann and Cornelius Castoriadis Between Ontology and Praxis
    Anarchist Developments in Cultural Studies 2013 (2). 2013.
    Every metaphysic, according to Reiner Schürmann, involves the positing of a first principle for thinking and doing whereby the world becomes intelligible and masterable. What happens when such rules or norms no longer have the power they previously had? According to Cornelius Castoriadis, the world makes sense through institutions of imaginary significations. What happens when we discover that these significations and institutions truly are imaginary, without ground? Both thinkers begin their on…Read more
  •  337
    World, Nothing, and Globalization in Nishida and Nancy
    In Leah Kalmanson James Mark Shields (ed.), Buddhist Responses to Globalization, . pp. 107-129. 2014.
    The “shrinking” of the globe in the last few centuries has made explicit that the world is a tense unity of many: the many worlds are forced to contend with one another. Nishida Kitarō, the founder of the Kyoto school, once stated that to be is to be implaced. We exist by partaking in “the socio-historical world.” More recently, Jean-luc Nancy has conceived of the world in terms of sense. What is striking in both is that the world emerges out of a nothing, created ex nihilo—the phrase stripp…Read more
  •  315
    Introduction to Nakamura Yūjirō and his Work
    Social Imaginaries 1 (1): 71-82. 2015.
    In Social Imaginaries, vol. 1, nr. 1 (Spring 2015) due out in May 2015.
  •  261
    Transcendent or immanent? Significance and history of li in confucianism
    Journal of Chinese Philosophy 37 (3): 417-437. 2010.
    This paper investigates the meaning of the neo-Confucian concept of 'li'. From early on, it has the sense of a pattern designating how things are and ought to be. But it takes on the appearance of something transcendent to the world only at a certain point in history, when it becomes juxtaposed to 'qi'. Zhu Xi has been criticized for this 'li-qi' dichotomization and the transcendentalization of 'li'. The paper re-examines this putative dualism and transcendentalism, looking into both Zhu's discu…Read more
  •  222
    Within the context of Heidegger’s claim that his thinking has moved from the “meaning of being” to the “truth of being” and finally to the “place of being,” this paper examines the “spatial” motifs that become pronounced in his post-1930 attempts to think being apart from temporality. My contention is that his “shift” (Wendung) in thinking was a move beyond his earlier focus upon the project-horizon of the meaning (Sinn) of being, i.e., time, based on the existential hermeneutic of mortality, a…Read more
  •  203
    Anontology and the Issue of Being and Nothing in Nishida Kitarō
    In JeeLoo Liu Douglas L. Berger (ed.), Nothingness in Asian Philosophy, . pp. 263-283. 2014.
    This chapter will explicate what Nishida means by “nothing” (mu, 無), as well as “being” (yū, 有), through an exposition of his concept of the “place of nothing” (mu no basho). We do so through an investigation of his exposition of “the place of nothing” vis-àvis the self, the world, and God, as it shows up in his epistemology, metaphysics, theology and religious ethics during the various periods of his oeuvre – in other words, his understanding of nothingness that he takes to be the root of the s…Read more
  •  184
    The paper will explicate the Sache or matter of the dialectic of the founder of Kyoto School philosophy, Nishida Kitarō (1870-1945), from the standpoint of his mature thought, especially from the 1930s and 40s. Rather than providing a simple exposition of his thought I will engage in a creative reading of his concept of basho (place) in terms of chiasma and chōra, or a chiasmatic chōra. I argue that Nishida’s appropriation of nineteenth century German, especially Hegelian, terminology was inad…Read more
  •  181
    The Unsolved Issue of ConsciousnessThe Unsolved Issue of Consciousness
    with Nishida Kitarō
    Philosophy East and West 62 (1). 2012.
    The following essay, “The Unsolved Issue of Consciousness” (Torinokosaretaru ishiki no mondai 取残されたる意識の問題), by Nishida Kitarō 西田幾多郎 from 1927 is significant in regard to the development of what has come to be called “Nishida philosophy” (Nishida tetsugaku 西田哲学). In what follows, in addition to providing some commentary on the important points of his essay, I would like to show its relevance or significance not only for those who would like to study Nishida’s thought but also for philosophy in ge…Read more
  •  130
    The Originary Wherein: Heidegger and Nishida on the Sacred and the Religious
    Research in Phenomenology 40 (3): 378-407. 2010.
    In this paper, I explore a possible convergence between two great twentieth century thinkers, Nishida Kitarō of Japan and Martin Heidegger of Germany. The focus is on the quasi-religious language they employ in discussing the grounding of human existence in terms of an encompassing Wherein for our being. Heidegger speaks of “the sacred” and “the passing of the last god” that mark an empty clearing wherein all metaphysical absolutes or gods have withdrawn but are simultaneously indicative of an o…Read more
  •  128
    My very first published article as a graduate student in 1995 in a peer-reviewed journal (PoMo Magazine) that no longer exists. Published in PoMo Magazine, vol. 1, nr. 1 (Spring/Summer 1995). I elaborate a non-metaphysical phenomenology that is at the same time a way of thinking and a way of being "without why." My starting point is Reiner Schürmann's anarchistic interpretation of Heidegger. It was my first (somewhat sophmoric) attempt to develop a kind of ontology.
  •  126
    with Kiyoshi Miki
    Social Imaginaries 2 (1): 25-69. 2016.
    “Myth” comprises the first chapter of the book, The Logic of the Imagination, by Miki Kiyoshi. In this chapter Miki analyzes the significance of myth (shinwa) as possessing a certain reality despite being “fictions.” He begins by broadening the meaning of the imagination to argue for a logic of the imagination that involves expressive action or poiesis (production) in general, of which myth is one important product. The imagination gathers in myth material from the environing world lived by th…Read more
  •  123
    Truth and Control in Being and Language
    Auslegung 20 (1): 25-34. 1995.
    This paper examines possible converging points between Heidegger and Foucault on being and language. Both are concerned with the temporal movement of a transient event which, whether "presencing" as a thing-present or erupting-forth out of conflicting forces as a discursive configuration, becomes preserved as a subsistent "thing"--as a mode of being for Heidegger, as a mode of knowledge in relation to techniques of power for Foucault. This is accompanied with the claim to persist throughout its …Read more
  •  117
    "The Logic of Place" and Common Sense
    with Yūjirō Nakamura
    Social Imaginaries 1 (1): 71-82. 2015.
    The essay is a written version of a talk Nakamura Yūjirō gave at the Collège international de philosophie in Paris in 1983. In the talk Nakamura connects the issue of common sense in his own work to that of place in Nishida Kitarō and the creative imagination in Miki Kiyoshi. He presents this connection between the notions of common sense, imagination, and place as constituting one important thread in contemporary Japanese philosophy. He begins by discussing the significance of place (basho) …Read more
  •  111
    The Unsolved Issue of Consciousness
    with Nishida Kitarō
    Philosophy East and West 62 (1): 44-51. 2012.
    This essay by Nishida Kitarō from 1927, translated into English here for the first time, is from the initial period of what has come to be called “Nishida philosophy” (Nishida tetsugaku), when Nishida was first developing his conception of “place” (basho). Nishida here inquires into the relationship between logic and consciousness in terms of place and implacement in order to overcome the shortcomings of previous philosophical attempts—from the ancient Greeks to the moderns—to dualistically conc…Read more
  •  109
    Representation and Poiesis: The Imagination in the Later Heidegger
    Philosophy Today 51 (3): 261-277. 2007.
    I examine the role of the imagination (Einbildung) for Martin Heidegger after his Kant-reading of 1929. In 1929 he broadens the imagination to the openness of Dasein. But after 1930 Heidegger either disparages it as a representational faculty belonging to modernity; or further develops and clarifies its ontological broadening as the clearing or poiesis. If the hylo-morphic duality implied by Kantian imagination requires a prior unity, that underlying power unfolding beings in aletheic formations…Read more
  •  97
    Emptiness and experience: Pure and impure
    Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 4 (1): 57-76. 2004.
    This paper discusses the idea of "pure experience" within the context of the Buddhist tradition and in connection with the notions of emptiness and dependent origination via a reading of Dale Wright's reading of 'Huangbo' in his 'Philosophical Meditations on Zen Buddhism'. The purpose is to appropriate Wright's text in order to engender a response to Steven Katz's contextualist-constructivist thesis that there are no "pure" (i.e., unmediated) experiences. In light of the Mahayana claim that ever…Read more
  •  95
    Published in PoMo Magazine vol. 2, nr. 1 (Spring/Summer 1996) during my years as a grad student at the New School. I examine Nietzsche's presentation of the eternal recurrence, and discuss its interpretations by Heidegger, Bataille, Derrida, Klossowski, Stambaugh, and Vattimo. I will be returning to Nietzsche in the future.
  •  70
    The Equating of the Unequal
    Social Imaginaries 1 (2): 92-102. 2015.
    This is an English translation of Waldenfels' German essay: Equality and inequality are basic elements of law, justice and politics. Equality integrates each of us into a common sphere by distributing rights, duties and chances among us. Equality turns into mere indifference as far as we get overintegrated into social orders. When differences are fading away experience loses its relief and individuals lose their face. Our critical reflections start from the inevitable paradox of making equal wha…Read more
  •  54
    Kūkai's Shingon: Embodiment of Emptiness
    In Bret W. Davis (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Japanese Philosophy, Oxford University Press. 2019.
    This chapter explicates the philosophy of the body of sixth-century Buddhist thinker Kūkai. Kūkai brings together what initially seem to be opposing concepts: body and emptiness. He does this in the context of formulating a system of cosmology inseparable from religious practice. We interact with the rest of the cosmos through our body. Kūkai characterizes the cosmos in turn as the body of the Buddha, who personifies the embodiment of the dharma. This cosmic body is comprised of myriad bodies th…Read more
  •  47
    Introduction to Miki Kiyoshi and his "Logic of the Imagination"
    Social Imaginaries 2 (1): 13-24. 2016.
    This is an introduction to Miki Kiyoshi and his philosophy of the imagination and to the translation of the first chapter of his Logic of Imagination, "Myth," published in the same issue of the journal.
  •  45
    Rethinking the History of the Productive Imagination in Relation to Common Sense
    In Suzi Adams & Jeremy Smith (eds.), Social Imaginaries: Critical Interventions, Rowman & Littlefield, International. pp. 45-75. 2019.
    The imagination—Einbildung—as its German makes clear is the faculty of formation. But this formative activity in various ways through the history of its concept has been intimately related to the concept of common sense, whether understood as the sense that gathers, orders, and makes coherent the various sense, or as the sensibility of the community. This contribution seeks to unfold that history of the concept of the creative or productive imagination while also tracing the parallel history o…Read more
  •  43
    On (the) nothing: Heidegger and Nishida
    Continental Philosophy Review 51 (2): 239-268. 2018.
    Two major twentieth century philosophers, of East and West, for whom the nothing is a significant concept are Nishida Kitarō and Martin Heidegger. Nishida’s basic concept is the absolute nothing upon which the being of all is predicated. Heidegger, on the other hand, thematizes the nothing as the ulterior aspect of being. Both are responding to Western metaphysics that tends to substantialize being and dichotomize the real. Ironically, however, while Nishida regarded Heidegger as still trapped w…Read more
  •  41
    This chapter examines the imagination, its relationship to “common sense,” and its recent development in the notion of the social imaginary in Western philosophy and the contributions Miki Kiyoshi and Nakamura Yūjirō can make in this regard. I trace the historical evolution of the notion of the productive imagination from its seeds in Aristotle through Kant and into the social imagination or imaginary as bearing on our collective being-in-the-world, with semantic and ontological significance, i…Read more
  •  33
    Imagination, Formation, and Place: An Ontology
    In Hans-Georg Moeller & Andrew Whitehead (eds.), 'Imagination: Cross-Cultural Philosophical Analyses, Bloomsbury. 2018.
    My contribution seeks to unfold an ontology of the imagination based on the history of the productive imagination in its relation to common sense and recent developments of the notion of the social imaginary, while making use of ideas found in both Western and Japanese thinkers. Kyoto School philosopher Miki Kiyoshi shows a connection between the imagination he inherits from Kant and a certain form-formlessness dynamic he inherits from Nishida Kitarō’s notion of a self-forming formlessness. The …Read more
  •  31
    Chōra in Heidegger and Nishida
    Studia Phaenomenologica 16 489-518. 2016.
    In this article I discuss how the Greek concept of chōra inspired both Martin Heidegger and Nishida Kitarō. Not only was Plato’s concept an important source, but we can also draw connections to the pre-Platonic understanding of the term as well. I argue that chōra in general entails concretion-cum-indetermination, a space that implaces human existence into its environment and clears room for the presencing-absencing of beings. One aim is to convince Nishida scholars of the significance of chōra …Read more
  •  29
    with Miki Kiyoshi
    Social Imaginaries 2 (1): 25-69. 2016.
    “Myth” comprises the first chapter of the book, The Logic of the Imagination, by Miki Kiyoshi.In this chapter Miki analyzes the significance of myth as possessing a certain reality despite being “fictions.” He begins by broadening the meaning of the imagination to argue for a logic of the imagination that involves expressive action or poiesis in general, of which myth is one important product. The imagination gathers in myth material from the environing world lived by the social collectivity. It…Read more
  •  28
    This chapter discusses the comparative philosophies of two premier comparativists of postwar Japan, Nakamura Hajime and Izutsu Toshihiko. Both were known as accomplished scholars within their respective fields—Buddhist studies and Indology for Nakamura, and Islamic studies for Izutsu—when they initiated their comparative projects. Each had a distinct vision of what comparison entails and the sort of philosophy it would produce. Nakamura’s project was a world history of ideas that uncovers basic …Read more
  •  25
    Philosophy and Japanese Philosophy in the World
    European Journal of Japanese Philosophy 2 9-42. 2017.
    In tackling the question of what is Japanese philosophy, the paper discusses: philosophy in general, the issue of Japanese philosophy, and the relevance of both philosophy and Japanese philosophy in our present age of globalization. Examining the definitions of philosophy provided by Kant, Hegel, and Heidegger, and looking at the philosophies of Nishida and Nishitani among others, I argue the source of philosophy—its originary and universal motivation—to be the question of meaning of existence. …Read more