Saturday, 1 May 2010

Enlightened View, from Charles Goodman

I'm working my way through Charles Goodman's excellent Consequences of Compassion: An Interpretation and Defense of Buddhist Ethics, and finding gem after gem of clarity and wisdom.

That might be surprising considering I'm a Kantian (a la Wood) studying under a Virtue ethicist (Keown) and Goodman is a sturdy defender of Consequentialism. It just goes to show that wisdom can work its way around our silly (at times) categories of things.

Today I just wanted to share his brief statement on enlightened ethics:
.... enlightened beings act fully spontaneously, out of innate great compassion, without having to engage in practical reasoning. (p.125)
If asked though, such beings could quickly explain their actions based on the Buddhist scheme of their choosing (be it Kantian, Virtue based, or Consequentialist...).