Buddhism and Politics in 20th Century Asia by Ian Harris

By Ian Harris

Traditionally, Buddhism has prospered in societies equipped according to the socio-political teachings of the Buddha. the 20 th century has been a very disturbing time in Buddhism's heritage, no longer least simply because conventional polities were eroded. Disparate components, equivalent to conflict, modernity, westernization, nationalization, capitalism, communism and ethnic clash, have made their presence felt within the religion's Asian heartlands. during this research a crew of overseas students verify the style within which Buddhist businesses and participants have resisted, come to phrases with, or occasionally allied themselves with those forces. It has turn into well-known for Westerners to view Buddhism as an otherworldly and introspective faith. via interpreting matters similar to left-right divisions within the monastic order, the increase of equipped lay routine, Buddhist social activism, in addition to explicitly Buddhist encouraged political task, this e-book demonstrates that the emphasis on meditation and psychological education is just one strand during this richly complicated, world-historical faith.

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Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. H. (1979) Robe and Plough: Monasticism and Economic Interest in Early Medieval Sri Lanka. : University of Arizona Press. Hall, H. Fielding (1908), The Soul of a People. London: Macmillan. Hurvitz, Leon (1957) '"Render unto Caesar" in Early Chinese Buddhism', Sino-Indian Studies5(3/4), 80-114. ) The Buddhist Forum Volume IV: Seminar Papers 1994-1996. 23 IAN HARRIS London: School of Oriental and African Studies, 141-63. S. ) (1986) Lokaneyyappakaranam.

In 1964, all other parties were outlawed. Within a few months, the BSPP produced an ideological charter, the System of Correlation of Man and His Environment: The Philosophy of the Burma Socialist Programme Party. This was based at least in part on a Buddhist interpretation of reality (with an overlay of MarxistLeninist thought). Written by a former Buddhist monk (U Chit Hlaing), it used some Pali terms but, because its aim was to 'keep religion out of political life', there is no reference to such key notions as samsdra, karma or the renunciant life of the monk (Smith 1965, 291).

Freedom of belief, then, is a minority right and minorities are not expected to interfere in the rights of the majority. In the PRC, the term 'religion' is interpreted in the strict sense of ritual, doctrine and belief. 32 The law of the PRC, then, makes a hard and fast distinction between religion on the one hand and politics on the other. This is particularly troublesome for some minorities, particularly the Tibetans, whose customs and traditions do not reflect this way of thinking. Nevertheless, long-standing traditions rooted in Asian culture, such as Buddhism33 and Daoism, have been slightly more favourably treated than religions related to foreign imperialism, such as Christianity.

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