Buddhist Epistemology and the Liar Paradox

Australasian Journal of Philosophy:1-17 (forthcoming)
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The liar paradox is still an open philosophical problem. Most contemporary answers to the paradox target the logical principles underlying the reasoning from the liar sentence to the paradoxical conclusion that the liar sentence is both true and false. In contrast to these answers, Buddhist epistemology offers resources to devise a distinctively epistemological approach to the liar paradox. In this paper, I mobilise these resources and argue that the liar sentence is what Buddhist epistemologists call a contradiction with one’s own words. I situate my argument in the works of Dignāga and Dharmakīrti and show how Buddhist epistemology answers the paradox.

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Szymon Bogacz
Australian National University


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