Speaker: Prof. Shenghai Li

                   Visiting Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy,

                   National Taiwan University

Title: Debate between Systems: Bhāviveka and Candrakīrti on How to Criticize the Sāṃkhya Theory of Causation in Indian Philosophy


Date: 15:30 – 17:30, Monday, March 21, 2022

Venue:    Conference Room 302, Department of Philosophy, ShuiYuan Campus,                             National Taiwan University (18, SiYuan Street, Taipei)



The controversy between Bhāviveka and Candrakīrti has been regarded by Tibetan scholars as the watershed in the history of Middle Way (Madhyamaka) Philosophy. This talk will review the positions of two Middle Way philosophers as presented in the Indian texts as well as the context of the earlier development of Buddhist philosophy. Bhāviveka thinks that Middle Way Philosophy must update its approach and adopt the newly emerged theory of Buddhist logic by following the standard syllogistic method. Candrakīrti, on the other hand, favors the traditional reductio ad absurdum style argument because he believes that disputants from different philosophical traditions interpret the subject of a debate differently. We will explore whether the disagreement concerns logical method alone, or it reflects a more substantive divide between the two Buddhist philosophers.