9. The Dalai Lama and Religious Diversity
Abraham Vélez de Cea [+]
Eastern Kentucky University
This volume discusses contemporary Buddhist responses to religious diversity from Theravādin and Tibetan Buddhist perspectives. Buddhist attitudes toward other religious traditions (and its own) are unquestionably diverse, and have undergone changes throughout historical eras and geographic spaces, as Buddhists, and traditions Buddhists have encountered, continue to change (after all, all conditioned things are impermanent). The present time is a particularly dynamic moment to take stock of Buddhist attitudes toward religious others, as Buddhist identities are being renegotiated in unprecedented ways in our increasingly globalized age. Is it true that Buddhists are tolerant of other religions? To what extent are Buddhists tolerant? Is nirvana held to be attainable through Buddhism alone? If so, through which Buddhist tradition? This volume approaches these questions and others from perspectives representing Theravādin and Tibetan traditions of Buddhism. The chapters herein bring together a spectrum of views that are not often found side-by-side in a single volume or in a meaningful dialogue with each other, needless to mention with other religions. This volume seeks to remedy this situation, and break new ground to enable further dialogue, understanding, and constructive encounters across Buddhist traditions and between other religious traditions and Buddhists.