Routledge Handbook on the Philosophy of Meditation  book cover
1st Edition

Routledge Handbook on the Philosophy of Meditation

Edited By

Rick Repetti

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after May 3, 2022
ISBN 9780367647469
May 3, 2022 Forthcoming by Routledge
432 Pages

SAVE $73.50
was $245.00
USD $171.50

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

This Handbook provides a comprehensive overview and analysis of the state of the field of the philosophy of meditation and engage primarily in the philosophical assessment of the merits of meditation practices.

This Handbook unites novel and original scholarship from 28 leading Asian and Western philosophers, scientists, theologians and other scholars on the philosophical assessment of meditation. It critically assesses the conceptual and empirical validity of meditation, its philosophical implications, its legitimacy as a phenomenological research tool, its potential value as an aid to neuroscience research, its many practical benefits, and, among other considerations, its possibly misleading interpretations, applications, and consequences.

Following the introduction by the editor, the handbook’s chapters are organised in six parts:

• Meditation and philosophy

• Meditation and epistemology

• Meditation and metaphysics

• Meditation and values

• Meditation and phenomenology

• Meditation in Greco-Roman and Judeo-Christian traditions

A distinctive, timely, and invaluable reference work, it marks the emergence of a new discipline therein, the philosophy of meditation. The book will be of interest to an interdisciplinary audience in the fields of philosophy, meditation, Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, theology, Asian and Western Philosophy. It will serve as the textbook in any philosophy course on meditation, and as secondary reading in courses in philosophy of mind, consciousness, selfhood/personhood, metaphysics, or phenomenology, thereby helping to restore philosophy as a way of life.

Table of Contents

Notes on Contributors; Foreword by Owen Flanagan; Preface; Acknowledgements; Introduction: Is meditation philosophy?; Part I. Meditation and Philosophy; 1. Skeptical Doubts about Meditation as Philosophy RICHARD LEGUM; 2. The Philosophy of Meditation: The Spoken Tao RICK REPETTI; 3. Meditation and the Paradox of Self-Consciousness BEN ABELSON; 4. The Relation Between Meditation and Analytic Philosophy MARIE FRIQUEGNON; 5. Engaging Metacognitive Practices: on the uses (and possible abuse) of Meditation in Philosophy SONAM KACHRU; 6. Differences and Interaction between Meditative Cultivation and Philosophical Thought/Insight in Early and Theravāda Buddhism PETER HARVEY; 7. The Necessity of Meditative Experience in Upanisadic turiya and Yogācāra amala vijñana CHARU THAPLIYAL; Part II. Meditation and Epistemology; 8. Meditation, Nonconceptuality, and the Reflexive Structure of Consciousness JOHN SPACKMAN; 9. The Experience of Presence: Meditation and the Nature of Consciousness WOLFGANG FASCHING; 10. Meditation as Cultivating Knowledge-How CHRISTOPHER W. GOWANS; 11. How Meditation Changes the Brain: a Neurophilosophical and Pragmatic Account DAVID R. VAGO; 12. How a Philosophy of Meditation Can Explore the Deep Connections Between Mindfulness and Contemplative Wisdom JOHN VERVAEKE; 13. Psychedelics and Meditation: a Neurophilosophical Perspective CHRIS LETHEBY; Part III. Meditation and Metaphysics; 14. Philosophy Without a Philosopher: anātman as a Special Case of Dependent Arising LOU MARINOFF; 15. Meditative Experience and the Plasticity of Self-Experience MATTHEW MACKENZIE; 16. The Self: What Does Mindfulness Meditation Reveal About It? KARSTEN J. STRUHL; 17. Control, Anxiety, and the Progressive Detachment from the Self BRYCE HUEBNER AND GENEVIEVE HAYMAN; Part IV. Meditation and Values; 18. Is There a Global Norm in Favor of Global Attentiveness? JAKE H. DAVIS; 19. Meditation in the Context of a Naturalized Eudaimonic Buddhism SETH ZUIHŌ SEGALL; Part V. Meditation and Phenomenology; 20. The Phenomenology of Meditation STHANESHWAR TIMALSINA; 21. What is Meditation good for? Reflections on the use of Meditation in the Study of Consciousness GEORGES DREYFUS; 22. Bare Attention, Dereification, and Meta-Awareness in Mindfulness: a Phenomenological Critique ODYSSEUS STONE AND DAN ZAHAVI; 23. Consciousness, Content, and Cognitive Attenuation: a Neurophenomenological Perspective CHRISTIAN COSERU; Part VI. Meditation in Greco-Roman and Judeo-Christian Traditions; 24. Prosochê as Stoic Mindfulness MASSIMO PIGLIUCCI; 25. The Philosophical Presuppositions of Christian Meditation: Theo-Philosophical Anthropology and its Corresponding Participatory Ontology JOSEPH TERRY; 26. The End of Man: Philosophical Consummation in Jewish Meditative Tradition TOMER PERSICO; Index

View More



Rick Repetti is Professor of Philosophy at The City University of New York (CUNY), USA and author of four books, including "Buddhism, Meditation, and Free Will" (Routledge 2018), and dozens of articles and chapters on meditation and free will. He is APPA-certified philosophical counsellor, podcaster, 4th-Dan Shotokan blackbelt, and has taught meditation and yoga since the mid-1970s.


Rick Repetti has invited the leading scholars of the philosophy of meditation to reflect on the significance of this practice. The Routledge Handbook on the Philosophy of Meditation is the most extensive and informative collection of articles on this topic in print.  This Handbook is the first stop for anyone interested in the philosophical issues raised by meditation practice.  

Jay L. Garfield, Doris Silbert Professor in the Humanities

Smith College and the Harvard Divinity School


The Routledge Handbook on the Philosophy of Meditation is first of its kind. Rick Repetti, a leader in the field, has edited this excellent collection of original articles from experts with diverse perspectives, masterfully arranging them into themes including phenomenology, metaphysics, epistemology, values, and religion, relating each to the central hypothesis that there is a philosophy of meditation.

Miri Albahari, Philosophy

University of Western Australia