What is the course about?
Keiji Nishitani examined the relation between nihilism (meaninglessness) and ‘emptiness’ (shunyata) in his major work ‘Religion and Nothingness’ in which he understands nihilism to be overcome by developing a philosophy of emptiness. This work also engages a philosophy of religion that may be of use in inter-faith dialogue.
What will we cover?
What ‘religion’ is in Nishitani’s view.
The relation between religion and nihilism (the sense of ‘meaninglessness’) based in Nishitani’s examination of Western ‘existentialist’ thought.
How nihilism is overcome through realising and understanding ‘emptiness’ and the subsequent impact on everyday life.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
Discuss critically a view of religion that is not rooted in the concept of a creator God.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
No prior knowledge is assumed. A willingness to critically examine concepts and some basic familiarity with
discussion/debate, argument and evaluation will be beneficial.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
The course will run in a seminar format with short slide presentation including Q&A and group discussion. No
outside work is required.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
No special equipment is required, other than for note-taking as preferred.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
General information and advice on courses at City Lit is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details