By Michael Zimmermann
This quantity reviews the proof that, at specific moments of their historical past and in convinced points in their doctrines, the traditions of Buddhism, like different non secular traditions, have actively or passively promoted - and will proceed to advertise - violent modes of habit or structural violence. The articles during this quantity hide a large spectrum of the Buddhist international in time period of areas and sessions. They take care of facets of violence beginning in India sooner than the typical period and varying to the help of jap militarism by means of Buddhist leaders some distance into the twentieth century.
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Extra resources for Buddhism and Violence
The Sarvastivadins even recognized a whole category of arhats who commit suicide. 48 Such persons may, for instance, kill themselves because they are tired of sense objects or because they are afraid of losing their state if they fall il1. 49 Still another group of arhats has, according to the Sarvastivadins, a similar ability to one ascribed to the Buddha: They can shorten their natural span of life by a special kind of supernatural power. "so 47 For details see Damien Keown, "Attitudes to Euthanasia in the Vinaya and Commentary," Journal of Buddhist Ethics 6 (1999): 267-8.
The political character of present-day self-immolations can already clearly be detected in the first of these public self-immolations by fire, which was committed in June 1963 by the monk Thich Quang Duc. This act was perfonned shortly after, and as a reaction to, a massacre committed against peaceful Buddhist demonstrators in South Vietnam. These events had been preceded by years of repression against Buddhists under the regime of President Diem, which was dominated by Catholics and supported by the United States of America.
1asarpa]). 45 Martin Delhey stories need to be considered. Were the narratives of self-sacrifice meant as practical instrUctions to be followed by the Buddhist' audience? lcen by the masses. The situation changed when Mahayana, which is mainly characterized by the Bodhisattva path it propagated, thought to be superior to the way practiced by ancient and conservative Buddhists, emerged. It is an essential part of the new ideal that one extends boundless compassion and that one develops the virtue of liberality to the pOInt of perfection.