The Ethics of Avatars

This talk is open for non-college members

This talk will be looking at the philosophical and ethical implications of avatars in Hinduism and Buddhism, as well at their more contemporary technological manifestations. In addition to some remarks on their legal and economic ramifications topics discussed include the Bhagavadgītā, Buddhist tulkus, and ethical problems arising in Virtual Reality (VR). Free snacks and drinks served.

About the Speaker: Dr. Jan Westerhoff is a Professor of Buddhist Philosophy in the Faculty of Theology and Religion and a tutorial fellow at LMH. Originally trained as a philosopher and orientialist, Jan’s research focuses on philosophical aspects of the religious traditions of ancient India. Much of Jan’s work concentrates on Buddhist thought (especially Madhyamaka) as preserved in Sanskrit and Tibetan sources, and Jan also has a lively interest in Classical Indian philosophy (particularly Nyāya). Jan’s research on Buddhist philosophy covers both theoretical (metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of language) and normative aspects (ethics); Jan is also interested in the investigation of Buddhist meditative practice from the perspective of cognitive science and the philosophy of mind.