The Debate Between Wisdom and the Reifying Habit is the principal philosophical work of the renowned first Panchen Lama, Lobsang Chokyi Gyaltsen (1570-1662). The text is an original Tibetan masterpiece popular among philosophers of the Gelug sect of Tibetan Buddhism and is styled as a sustained debate between shes rabs (wisdom) bdag 'dzin (the reifying habit). It is a literary tour de force, being structured as a philosophical comedy that exploys the tension between the two protagonists as a dramatic resource. The text represents not only the topics but also the form of Tibetan philosophical culture, and its wit and dynamic literary structure will earn for it a place among the texts of world-class literature.
About the Author(s)
Kenneth Liberman is Professor Emeritus at the University Oregon. He is the author of Dialectical Practice in Tibetan Philosophical Culture (Rowman & Littlefield), Husserl's Criticism of Reason (Lexington Books) and More Studies in Ethnomethodology (SUNY Press). He presently divides his time among Sera Jey Monastic University in Bylakuppe, India, where he serves as the Phd Proctor/Professor, and research assignments as the Hans Christian Anderson Visiting Professor at Suddansk Universitet in Denmark and University Research Fellow at the Universita di Trento in Italy.