Debashish Banerji, PhD, is Haridas Chaudhuri Professor of Indian Philosophies and Cultures and Chairman of the East West Psychology Department at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. He is author of Seven Quartets of Becoming: A Transformative Yoga Psychology Based on the Diaries of Sri Aurobindo and also The Alternate Nation of Abanindranath Tagore, a book about his great grandfather. He edited an anthology about his great uncle, Rabindranath Tagore in the Twenty-First Century. With Robert McDermott, he has coedited an anthology titled Philo-Sophia: Wisdom Goddess Traditions.
Here he points out that the earliest known Buddhist texts emerged several hundred years after the Buddha lived. Therefore, to better understand the origins of Buddhism, he relies upon artistic and architectural evidence – particularly the stupas of Buddhism, to which there are few textual references. Buddhism appears to have influences both from central Asia and the Indian subcontinent. He regards the stupas as being influenced by solar deity traditions.
(Recorded on November 25, 2021)
Published on January 28, 2022