Vincent Eltschinger, Jowita Kramer, Parimal Patil, Chizuko Yoshimizu (eds.), 2023
Burlesque of the Philosophers : Indian and Buddhist Studies in Memory of Helmut Krasser. 2 vols. (Hamburg Buddhist Studies 19). Bochum/Freiburg: projektverlag, 2023. (918 p.) (order online)
Helmut Krasser, despite tragically passing away much too early in 2014, left his mark on more than one generation of scholars of Indian and Buddhist philosophy. An eminent specialist on the so-called “logico-epistemological tradition,” he devoted his Viennese dissertation and early work to the Buddhist philosopher Dharmottara, before broadening the scope of his research to Dignāga and Dharmakīrti, the tradition’s historical founders. In particular, he examined their ideas on the relationship between logic and soteriology. He also considered the very nature of their texts. Should they be understood as authored philosophical works? Or rather as edited lecture notes of students? Director from 2007 to 2014 of the Institute for the Cultural and Intellectual History of Asia at the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Helmut Krasser left behind a multi-faceted body of work, including editions of ancient Sanskrit manuscripts today found in the Tibetan Autonomous Region that had never before been published. This commemorative volume with more than thirty contributions not only reflects the multiplicity of his interests, it is also evidence of the deep impression he left on all those who met him. It is a document to the faithful friendship and highest respect still held by his friends and colleagues almost ten years after his death.