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date: 20 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Nishida Kitarō, the most significant and influential Japanese philosopher of the twentieth century, was the founder of the Kyoto School of Philosophy which focuses on the notion of pure experience or absolute nothingness. According to this worldview, the existence of social entities such as individuals, organizations, and societies is preceded by actions, relations, and experiences. Nishida’s work contributed to the emergence of a unique Japanese philosophy that combines Anglo-European philosophy with ancient Asian sources of thought such as Zen Buddhism and the philosophy of Lao Tzu. His thinking has profound implications for contemporary process organizational theorizing and especially for a revised comprehension of consciousness, self, world, and organization that is compatible with process philosophy. This chapter examines Nishida’s Zen-based philosophy and its relevance to self and process in organization studies.

Keywords: Nishida Kitarō, Kyoto School of Philosophy, Japanese philosophy, Zen Buddhism, consciousness, self, world, process philosophy, organization studies, absolute nothingness

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