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Thread: Ask a Buddhist

  1. #41
    Bunnies & Rainbow Socks Kayness's Avatar
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    I have never heard of any Buddhist killing anyone in the name of Buddhism. It's kind of goes against the ..uhm. point. You know, ahimsa and such.
    THOUGH I'm not saying that Buddhists have NOT killed anyone at all...of course they have and still do. Many Buddhist countries have a bloody history, but AFAIK it's never religiously motivated.

    Do you have any link? I want to know.
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  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kayness View Post
    I have never heard of any Buddhist killing anyone in the name of Buddhism. It's kind of goes against the ..uhm. point. You know, ahimsa and such.
    THOUGH I'm not saying that Buddhists have NOT killed anyone at all...of course they have and still do. Many Buddhist countries have a bloody history, but AFAIK it's never religiously motivated.

    Do you have any link? I want to know.

    It's funny, to think of Christ as a person, then to think of statements like this and relate it to Christian sentiment.

  3. #43
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kayness View Post
    I have never heard of any Buddhist killing anyone in the name of Buddhism. It's kind of goes against the ..uhm. point. You know, ahimsa and such.
    THOUGH I'm not saying that Buddhists have NOT killed anyone at all...of course they have and still do. Many Buddhist countries have a bloody history, but AFAIK it's never religiously motivated.

    Do you have any link? I want to know.
    He is referring to the Sri Lankan Civil War which has precious little to do with buddhism and a lot more with the aftershock of colonialism and how countries consisting of different ethnic groups organized themselves after independence.

    It started out as a conflict about how the different ethnic groups shuld be represented in parliament (the 15% Tamil minority originally cemanded a 50-50 representation) and which language(s) should be official, but the roots of the conflict go back to the British favoring certain groups during their reign, creating elites and thus leaving a lot of potential for future conflict once they withdrew. There was both a backlash of accumulated hostility towards the Tamils from the Sinhalese side and a fear of repression and loss of priviledge on the Tamil side.

    A classic post-colonial scenario.

    @Riva, correct me if I got this wrong.
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  4. #44
    Riva
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    He is referring to the Sri Lankan Civil War which has precious little to do with buddhism and a lot more with the aftershock of colonialism and how countries consisting of different ethnic groups organized themselves after independence.

    It started out as a conflict about how the different ethnic groups shuld be represented in parliament (the 15% Tamil minority originally cemanded a 50-50 representation) and which language(s) should be official, but the roots of the conflict go back to the British favoring certain groups during their reign, creating elites and thus leaving a lot of potential for future conflict once they withdrew. There was both a backlash of accumulated hostility towards the Tamils from the Sinhalese side and a fear of repression and loss of priviledge on the Tamil side.

    A classic post-colonial scenario.

    @Riva, correct me if I got this wrong.
    +1

    Yes it is correct. I'm surprised that you knew all that.

    I should add a bit to it -

    Initially there were no issues regarding the representation of the Parliament. Yes most authoritative positions were given to the Jaffna-Tamils as a way to control the Sinhalese majority. But these issues didn't come in to surface until the British Governor William Manning brought a policy/act which insisted that different ethnicities represented their own groups in the parliament. This was probably (not sure though) a ruse by the British Governor to create tension between the two ethnic groups.

    This is what caused all the issues. The Sinhalese being the majority inherited most of the seats and the Jaffna-Tamils started to realize they were losing their authoritative positions.

    Before that policy (act) was brought forward the Sinhalese and the Jaffna-Tamils worked together. Infact the representative of natives was a Jaffna-Tamil named Ponnambalam Arunachalam.

    1948 -
    Won the independence mostly thanks the Gandhi/India's fight for independence directly influencing Sri Lanka and the combined effort of both Sinhalese and the Jaffna-Tamils.

    1950s -
    The premier at that time did a mistake of making the official language of Sri Lanka Sinhalese which probably made the Tamils feel like aliens. In his defense even during the 1950s the Jaffna-Tamils still held most of the authoritative positions (except in the Parliament) therefore probably did that to hand over authoritative positions to the Sinhalese. This led Jaffna-Tamils to riot in the north, caused separatist feelings and a few decades later to war.

    1980s -
    The Indian government started directly backing the Tamil separatist as a way to have the Government of Sri Lanka under its thumb (which was probably to hold economic superiority in the region). They started training, supplying arms to the separatists. Infact in 1987 when the Sri Lankan armed forces laid siege to the terrorist the IndianAirforce actively intervened and provided the terrorist with weapons.

    I'm going too much in to detials here. What I was trying to imply was that with the backing of the Indian government the separatist movement got stronger and in to an armed conflict. But that's a story for some other day.

    -----

    Here let me also add Victor's interpretation of the matter -

    Since Buddha desired his devotees to show their loyalties to him and encouraged them to indicate this by making blood sacrifices the history of Buddhism is plagued with violent wars fought to glorify the name of Buddha.

  5. #45
    Mojibake sprinkles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kayness View Post
    I have never heard of any Buddhist killing anyone in the name of Buddhism. It's kind of goes against the ..uhm. point. You know, ahimsa and such.
    THOUGH I'm not saying that Buddhists have NOT killed anyone at all...of course they have and still do. Many Buddhist countries have a bloody history, but AFAIK it's never religiously motivated.

    Do you have any link? I want to know.
    Yes and from some perspectives, ahimsa is a principle, and not a rule to begin with. I see it as more about killing causing problems rather than a strictly moral prescription.

    It's more about "killing harms you and others so it is best not to do it" and less about "don't kill because it's wrong because I said so" There's also differing views about battle and self defense.

  6. #46
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sprinkles View Post
    Yes and from some perspectives, ahimsa is a principle, and not a rule to begin with. I see it as more about killing causing problems rather than a strictly moral prescription.

    It's more about "killing harms you and others so it is best not to do it" and less about "don't kill because it's wrong because I said so" There's also differing views about battle and self defense.
    Also a nice illustration of the general difference between a system of ethics based on divine instruction and a system of ethics based on humanistic/utilitarian considerations, something that tends to come up in debates on atheism.
    The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Neither love without knowledge, nor knowledge without love can produce a good life. - Bertrand Russell
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  7. #47
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    I remember learning in my world history class, before I "became buddhist", that Buddhism was like the most peaceful major religion in existence in the sense that it had started the least number of wars of any major religion.

    Over any large group of people there will be different motivations, and people will "abuse" things or find ways to justify their political/military aspirations, but that will always be. There are people in history who have abused buddhism for their own gain, and probably just about every religion in existence for that matter, but what is notaable about Buddhism, as pointed out in that world history class, is how infrequently that occurred relative to any other major religion. King Ashoka is often held up as an example of someone who personifies being buddhist and a ruler but not a warmonger/conqueror.

    It's harder to pin down specifically, but generally similar sentiments could be said for Taoism. However, China was never really Taoist as such, Taoist confucian shamanic buddhist pick any two or more, and Taoists generally avoided major positions of power. Jainism and Sikhism could also potentially be viewed in a similar light, though I dont recall details specifically enough to say this definitely atm.

  8. #48
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    Buddhists Attacking Australia

    Quote Originally Posted by Riva View Post
    Maybe it was/is.

    Lolz.

    Debunking Buddhism is not the real reason that offended me. Now that you know what offended me I wouldn't be surprised if you start exploiting that. But then again I do have my defenses against that too.

    I don't really have to defend Buddhism when it comes to the subject of violence and violent history. But like I said if there is proof of such instances where Buddha encouraged violence ever I'm all ears.

    Yes I've seen you exploiting this.

    Yes like I said I'm sorry for calling you a troll because you are obviously not one. Again I extend my apologies. Lolz....
    Please! Please! The only attack ever made on the Australian mainland was made by Buddhists. They attacked Darwin, Australia, with a larger naval force than the force that attacked Hawaii, and bombed Dawin more times than they bombed Pearl Harbour, then they went on to bomb ports all along the huge northern coastline of Australia.

    Then they snuck into Sydney Harbour, sank a few ships and bombarded the suburbs. Naturally we killed them, but then because they were brave military Buddhists, we buried them with full military honours.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    He [Victor] is referring to the Sri Lankan Civil War which has precious little to do with buddhism and a lot more with the aftershock of colonialism and how countries consisting of different ethnic groups organized themselves after independence.

    A classic post-colonial scenario.
    The Indian Sub-Continent was violently rent in two by one thing and one thing only : religion.

    And being part of the Indian Sub-Continent Sri Lanka followed suit.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott N Denver View Post
    I remember learning in my world history class, before I "became buddhist", that Buddhism was like the most peaceful major religion in existence.
    As I write, the peace loving Buddhists of Myanmar (formerly Burma) are killing, torturing, burning and driving out of their homes, the muslims of Myanmar.

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