Academic journal article Journal of Ecumenical Studies

Raimon Panikkar: (November 3, 1918-August 26, 2010)

Academic journal article Journal of Ecumenical Studies

Raimon Panikkar: (November 3, 1918-August 26, 2010)

Article excerpt

The name of Raimon (then Raimundo) Panikkar has appeared on our masthead since 1974, when he accepted appointment as an Associate Editor. In 1989, when we most recently published one of his articles, the accompanying bio said he was both Hindu and Roman Catholic and was "Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of California (Santa Barbara), now living primarily in Spain and India. He has also taught in Madrid, Rome, and Bangalore, and at Harvard University, in the fields of Sanskrit, philosophy, Indology, and comparative religion."

This giant of twentieth-century scholarship lived in Tavertet, Spain, near Barcelona. His father was an Indian Hindu; his mother, a Spanish Catholic. Following a traditional Catholic upbringing and education, including association with Opus Dei, he visited India in his mid-30's, where he was a close friend of Jules Monchanin, Henri Le Saux, and Bede Griffiths, monks who also expressed their Christianity in Buddhist and Hindu forms. Panikkar once declared that he left Europe a Christian and "discovered I was a Hindu and returned as a Buddhist without ever having ceased to be a Christian."

His U.S. teaching occurred in 1966-87. He was invited to deliver prestigious lectures around the world, including the Gifford Lectures at Edinburgh in 1989. His many books and hundreds of articles will be part of a planned thirty-volume collected works to be published by Jaca Books in Italy and an English edition by Continuum Books. …

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