lịch sử việt nam
Buddhisme Toward Peace And Reconciliation
Prof Nguyen Dang Thuc
The distinctive contribution of Buddha toward peace and reconciliation of ideologies id self-reliance or self-help because Buddha placed the onus of happiness of mankind on man, not on any power alien to man. One thing that can be said about the teachings of Buddha is that they are the teachings of a human being who was keen on nothing else so much as on human service. He did not only preach peace, but he led the calmest, simplest and most peaceful life ever lived on third earth.
Why have most religions failed in making any solid contribution toward peace? Many reasons have been advanced, but the chief one perhaps has been that most religions have based their ideas of brotherhood on one belief or another. This emphasis on considering a certain man or woman as your brother or sister because he or she believes as you do, has divided society into different belief organizations called religions or political ideologies and taught every individual belonging to a particular religion or ideology to think of outsiders not only as strangers or aliens but even as enemies. How can there be any peace in this so divided world when most of our attempts are oriented toward the ‛struggle for life’? Buddha put the emphasis on behaviour, instead of belief.
The teachings of Buddha can be ranged into two principal categories:
1/ Teachings based on the principle of Cause and Effect for Right views.
2/ Commandments for Right conduct.
Right views and right conduct go together. Buddha's whole emphasis is on right conduct. . . .The Marxist says: ‛Profit motive is the root cause of our troubles’. But what is the cause of the profit motive? The profit motive is the outcome of an ignorant tendency called Greed. If individual do not learn how to control it, they cannot think of any peace in the world, even if they have conquered all the power of Nature.
So Buddha laid stress on the conduct and behaviour of man, instead of belief. What you believe may be a matter for your personal and individual consideration, but the whole society is directly and vitally concerned with your behaviour and conduct.
‛I love God’, said Tagore, ‛because He has given me the freedom to deny Him’.
If we could just think of the whole world, of the whole humanity as a single organization, different individuals would have freedom to believe as they like, but when it comes to social behaviour, with everybody behaving in a way he would desire others to behave toward him, and then perhaps we could make a step toward real Peace.
Buddhism has changed the war-like conqueror Asoka into a most peaceful and tolerant man. Since his conversion, he became a fervent Buddhist, and completely and definitely changed his conduct:
"Just after the taking of Kalinga, the beloved of God began to follow Righteousness, to love Righteousness, to give instruction in Righteousness"
_ (Asoka's edicts)--(A. L. BASHAM "The Wonder that was India")
Asoka declared that all men were his children, strongly supported the doctrine of Ahimsa (non injury to men and animals) then rapidly spreading among religious people of all sects, banned animal sacrifices and regulated the slaughter of animals for food, completely forbidding the killing certain species. He took pride in the fact that he had substituted pilgrimages to Buddhist holy places for hunting expeditions, the traditional sport of Indian Kings, and reduced meat consumption in the palace. Thus
Asoka's encouragement was in part responsible for the growth of vegetarianism in India.
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