The Concept of Peace in Buddhism

Lord Buddha at Sikkim
Lord Buddha at Sikkim
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ūüĆ∑The Concept of Peace in Buddhism ūüĆ∑
ūüĆ∑The Peace Concepts of Early Buddhism: ūüôŹThe concept of Peace is expressed with the word Santi in both the ancient and modern languages of India. As Santi is described as the ideal state of man in Buddhist literature, we can say that Buddhism has aimed at peace in its long history. ūüĆ∑
ūüĆ∑The principle of action in relation to others in Buddhist ethics has been regarded as benevolence (maitri)) which might be defined as love in its pure form. The most conspicuous illustration of it is the love of a mother towards her children.ūüĎŹ
ūüĆ∑ “Just as with her own life
A mother Shields from hurt own,
her only, Child,- Let all- embracing thoughts
For all that lives be thine,
An all- embracing love
For all the universe
In all its heights and depths
And breadth, unstinted love,
Unmarred by hate within,
Not rousing enmity.”
For those who endeavour to Practice benevolence there is no discrimination.
With all am I a friend,comrade, to all,
And to all ceatures kind and merciful;
A heart of amity I Cultivate,
And ever in good-will is my delight( Mrs.Rhys Davids)
Even to our enemies we should be compassionate. Sariputta,the Elder, is said to have expressed himself as follows: ūüĆ∑
ūüĎŹCherish compassion even to your enemy, Pervade everywhere with the mind of benevolence! This is the Teaching of the Buddhas.”(A verse cited in the Milindapanha,ed.Trencker, p.394.)
ūüĆ∑The peace concept of Buddhism was established on the basis of the spirit of benevolence.ūüĆ∑
Shakyamuni deplored that the peaceful life of common people was seriously damaged owing to the conflicts of various states which occurred in the days of the rise of Buddhism. People seek riches; kings want the expansion of territories.(Majjhimanikaya, vol.ll.p.72Gatha):
The king having forcibly conquered the earth, The king having forcibly conquered the earth, To the shore of the ocean,holding the land
This side of the sea, may yet be all unsatisfied Hanker after the further side also( Mrs Rhys. Davids) For that purpose kings begin warfare, and trouble common people with distress and damage. They oppress their subjects arbitrarily with strong sovereignty. In this respect kings are not different from robbers.
The ksatiy as on the throne as just like serpents. When they get angry, they inflict punishments upon common people. So try to that they will not be resented, and that you may keep your life in safety.(Samyutta Nikaya, Vol.l.p.69Gatha).
Shakyamuni withdrew himself from the reign by kings as far as possible, and aimed at establishing an ideal society (Sangha) among recluses, thereby ameliorating society at large under the spiritual influence of Buddhism. He was not a politician who wanted to improve society with political power, nor a demagogue who used the passions of the populace for his own interests. He made much of the spiritual and moral influence by persuasion that one man wields over another, and aimed at social amelioration by nonviolence. The order founded by him never resorted to punishment by power in contrast with the orders of other religions. The punishments inflicted by the Buddhist order, upon its members when they perform misdeeds are based upon the voluntary agreement of the punished. Punishments were not extended to those who wanted to leave the order.

Such a through going pacifism makes Buddhist ascetics Keep aloof from military affairs. According to the rules ordained by the order of early Buddhism, monks should not see armies. In case of special reasons they may put up in the army for two or three nights, but no more. Even while they are putting up, they should not see the parade or exercises of the army. (Pachittiya, 48-51) To the secular world, they advocated the ideal of realizing peace. Politics should be advanced “without killing, without hurting , without making conquer, without becoming sad, without making sad, only complying with the Law(Dhamma Samyutta-nikaya, vol.l.p.26:the Chinese version of the Samyuktagama, vol.39, Taisho, vol.ll.p.288c). Early Buddhists made efforts so that wars would not occur, and persuaded monarchs to that effect.When Ajatasattu, the king of Magadha wanted to attack the Vajjis neighbouring to it, and sounded out the opinion of Shakyamuni through his minister. Vassakara, he admonished him not to wage a war.(Mahaparinibbana- suttanta, and the Chinese versions corresponding to it).
The prevent military invasion by means of spiritual inculcation, however, was of limited power.
In order to maintain Peace over a wide Territory, Powerful sovereignty and well-established social organization are needed. These were realised by King Asoka in later days.ūüĆ∑
Sabba papassa akaranam Kushalassa Upasampada Sacitta pariyodapanam etam buddhanasasanam sasanam ūüĆ∑
Hatred is never appeased through hatred in this world;
By love alone does it appease.
This is an ancient Law.ūüĆ∑
Greetings from Siddharth United Social Welfare Mission ūüĆ∑ SUSWM ūüĆ∑ Kolkata ūüĆ∑ India ūüĆ∑ [email protected] ūüĆ∑ ūüĎŹBhabato Sabba Mangalam

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Suman Munshi

Founder Editor of IBG NEWS (15/Mar/2012- 09/Aug/2018). Recipient of Udar Akash Rokeya Shakhawat Hossain Award 2018. National Geographic & Canon Wild Clicks 2011 jury and public poll winner. Studied Post Graduate Advance Dip in Computer Sc., MBA IT,LIMS (USA & Australia), GxP(USA & UK),BA (Sociology) Dip in Journalism (Ireland), Diploma in Vedic Astrology, Numerology, Palmistry, Vastu Shastra & Feng Sui 25 years in the digital & IT industry with Global MNCs' worked & traveled in USA, UK, Europe, Singapore, Australia, Bangladesh & many other countries. Education and Training advance management and R&D Technology from India, USA, UK, Australia. Over 30 Certification from Global leaders in R&D and Education. Computer Science Teacher, IT & LIMS expert with a wide fan following in his community. General Secretary West Bengal State Committee of All Indian Reporter’s Association
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