Instructor: Thomas F Yarnall. Historical introduction to Buddhist thought, scriptures, practices, and institutions. Attention given to Theravada, Mahayana, and Tantric Buddhism in India, as well as selected non-Indian forms.
TECHNOLOGY, RELIGION, FUTURE
Instructor: David R Kittay. This seminar will examine the history of the impact of technology and media on religion and vice versa before bringing into focus the main event: religion today and in the future. We'll read the classics as well as review current writing, video and other media, bringing thinkers such as Eliade, McLuhan, Mumford, and Weber into dialogue with the current writing of Kurzweil, Lanier and Taylor, and look at, among other things: ethics in a Virtual World; the relationship between Burning Man, a potential new religion, and technology; the relevance of God and The Rapture in Kurzweil's Singularity; and what will become of karma when carbon-based persons merge with silicon-based entities and other advanced technologies.
BUDDHISM & ISLAM, TIBET & CHINA
Instructor: Annabella C Pitkin. This course explores the long history of Buddhist / Muslim interactions in Tibetan and Chinese regions of Inner and East Asia. Students will explore mutual influences; discourses of violence, conversion, and tolerance; economic, literary, and cultural exchanges; and political rivalries, alliances and conquests. Students will also consider how Tibetan Buddhist and Inner Asian Muslim societies have managed their relationships with a succession of Chinese states, with special focus on the Qing era into the present day.