Thursday, February 15, 2007

Buddhism == Brian Bingham

Prof. Brian Bingham during the MetaOlin Systems Engineering module: "All models are broken."

Then later that night, Eric Munsing lent me a copy of Thich Nhat Hanh's book Being Peace, and I read the following (from the precepts of the Buddhist order Nhat Hanh belongs to):

First: Do not be idolatrous about or bound to any doctrine, theory, or ideology, even Buddhist ones. All systems of thought are guiding means; they are not absolute truth.

Made me smile.

1 comment:

David Klempner said...

Although I'd look at it as a more general thing.

Buddhism and science ("natural philosophy") are both, really, branches of philosophy-- or, at least, the core of Buddhism is.

This idea has been present in Buddhism from the beginning.

On the other hand, western natural philosophy was really burned by its slowness in questioning Aristotle, and it is really, gradually, coming to this same conclusion.

On the other hand, I'm not sure I agree with Nhat Hanh's statement here. I do not technically agree with Brian's statement either, but I would guess he does not intend his statement to go that far. As a practical matter, however, it is extremely useful.

(Was that remotely coherent?)