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Space in Relation to God or the Absolute in the Thought of Henry More and Śaṅkara: An Exercise in Comparative Philosophy

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AbstractSince Antiquity thinkers of all civilizations have speculated on the concept of space. The idea arose under various typologies and descriptions in different areas of knowledge ranging from cosmology, physics, and mathematics to philosophy and psychology. However, less known are the role and implications of space in theological and religio-philosophical discourse. This article aims to examine and characterize the claim that space is intimately related to God or the absolute from the perspective of two thinkers rooted in different historical, cultural, and religious settings: the Cambridge Platonist Henry More and the Advaita Vedāntin Śaṅkara. A comparative approach will bring forward the meeting points in their respective assessment of the relationship between space and God/the absolute, as well as the distinctiveness in their arguments, approach, and motivations. The present discussion may demonstrate alternative ways of addressing a valuable problem recurring at the intersection of philosophy and religion at different times and places throughout history.

Affiliations: 1: International Institute for Asian StudiesRapenburg 59, 2311 GJ LeidenThe


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1. Brahmasūtrabhāṣya (BSB) Gambhirananda Swami Brahmasūtrabhāṣya of Śrī Śaṅkarācārya 2006 Calcutta Advaita Ashrama
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