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Karma, Moral Responsibility and Buddhist Ethics

In Manuel Vargas & John Doris (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Moral Psychology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 7-23 (2022)

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  1. The Buddha's Lucky Throw and Pascal's Wager.Bronwyn Finnigan - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy.
    The Apaṇṇaka Sutta, one of the early recorded teachings of the Buddha, contains an argument for accepting the doctrines of karma and rebirth that Buddhist scholars claim anticipates Pascal’s wager. I call this argument the Buddha’s wager. Does it anticipate Pascal’s wager and is it a good bet? Contemporary scholars identify at least four versions of Pascal’s wager in his Pensées. This article demonstrates that the Buddha’s wager anticipates two versions of Pascal’s wager, but not its canonical form. Like Pascal’s (...)
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  • Buddhism and no-Self Theory: Examining the Relation between Human Actions and Moral Responsibility.Nishant Kumar & Satya Sundar Sethy - 2021 - Philosophia 10 (1).
    Buddhists endorse the concept of human actions and their consequences as they uphold the doctrine of karma. However, they deny the existence of a ‘permanent self’. Few questions arise in this regard. If a permanent self does not exist then who guides a person to decide the course of an action? How does a person choose to perform an action of the many alternatives in a situation? Who takes responsibility for the consequences of an action? This paper attempts to answer (...)
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  • Merit Transference and the Paradox of Merit Inflation.Matthew Hammerton - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry:1-18.
    Many ethical systems hold that agents earn merit and demerit through their good and bad deeds. Some of these ethical systems also accept merit transference, allowing merit to be transferred, in certain circumstances, from one agent to another. In this article, I argue that there is a previously unrecognized paradox for merit transference involving a phenomenon I call “merit inflation”. With a particular focus on Buddhist ethics, I then look at the options available for resolving this paradox. I conclude that (...)
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