Abstract

This essay discusses Swami Vivekananda's unduly neglected critical remarks on Arthur Schopenhauer's philosophy, which are contained primarily in lectures delivered in America and England between 1895 and 1896. I argue that Vivekananda, one of the first commentators to critique Schopenhauer's doctrine of the will from a Vedāntic standpoint, occupies a unique place in the early reception of Schopenhauer's philosophy. In contrast to Paul Deussen and Max Hecker, Vivekananda argues that Schopenhauer equates the will with the noumenal thing-in-itself. According to Vivekananda, Schopenhauer's conception of the will as the noumenal reality is mistaken for two main reasons: first, the will is at least subject to time and hence cannot be identified with the Kantian thing-in-itself beyond time, space, and causality; second, Schopenhauer's conception of the will as the noumenal thing-in-itself conflicts with the soteriological thesis that the will can be transcended through selfdenial and asceticism.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1529-1898
Print ISSN
0031-8221
Pages
pp. 1191-1221
Launched on MUSE
2017-10-20
Open Access
No
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