By Michael Jerryson, Mark Juergensmeyer
"A interesting paintings. . . " --Buddhadharma
"Anyone with idealized notions of Buddhism as a faith totally devoted to peace and non-violence will reap the benefits of this effective assortment. Outlining how a number Buddhists have participated in warfare and justified this obvious violation in their moral ideas, those essays shed new mild on sacred violence, just-war discourse, non secular nationalism, and spiritual institutions' collaboration with the country. it is a wealthy and well timed book." ---Christopher Ives, writer of Imperial-Way Zen
"This booklet is vital examining for Buddhist students with any uniqueness, if merely to foster new attention of the systemics of Buddhist politics and new textual readings, ancient framings, and theoretical frames. This quantity presents clean views that make it a real contribution to the examine of Buddhist violence and to Buddhist stories inside international traits of non secular violence. " --Journal of world Buddhism
Though ordinarily considered as a relaxed faith, Buddhism has a depressing facet. On a number of events over the last fifteen centuries, Buddhist leaders have sanctioned violence, or even warfare. The 8 essays during this ebook concentrate on numerous Buddhist traditions, from antiquity to the current, and exhibit that Buddhist corporations have used non secular photos and rhetoric to aid army conquest all through background.
Buddhist infantrymen in 6th century China got the illustrious prestige of Bodhisattva after killing their adversaries. In 17th century Tibet, the 5th Dalai Lama counseled a Mongol ruler's killing of his opponents. And in modern day Thailand, Buddhist infantrymen perform their tasks undercover, as totally ordained priests armed with weapons.
Buddhist conflict demonstrates that the discourse on faith and violence, frequently utilized to Judaism, Islam, and Christianity, can now not exclude Buddhist traditions. The booklet examines Buddhist army motion in Tibet, China, Korea, Japan, Mongolia, Sri Lanka, and Thailand, and exhibits that even the main not going and allegedly pacifist spiritual traditions are at risk of the violent trends of guy.
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Additional resources for Buddhist Warfare
One such case was that of an ofﬁcer from the Leang dynasty, who was descended from a long lineage of civil servants. 51 Although in China they never became noted (as they did in Japan), essential historical facts, the seditions, insurrections, or uprisings directed, fomented, or inspired by the Buddhists were never lacking throughout history. As was also the case in Japan, these periods seem to coincide with the breakdown of a centralized government. Whether or not religion has been incorporated within a societal feudal system, whenever the centralized power relaxes its control the same actions occur.
I cannot keep from discussing Korea more in depth; there is such an abundance of material. On many occasions Korean kings enlisted in their own armies to ﬁght against foreign invaders; the Korean peninsula was always seriously vulnerable. Monks were enlisted in the thousands. In the twelfth century they were recruited against the Jurchens; in the fourteenth, against the Mongols; in the sixteenth, against the Japanese from Hideyoshi; in the seventeenth, against the Manchu people. 93 In Japan, we can say that Buddhist military groups truly became an institution.
When the Jurchens showed up in front of the Tai prefecture at the foot of the Wutai shan mountain range, he protected it himself, since the prefect had defected. He was overwhelmed by the vast numbers arrayed against him. Consequently, the monasteries were consumed by ﬂames. The Jurchen general had Tchen-pao brought back to him alive. So taken aback was the general by Tchen-pao’s superb moral makeup, he was unable to decide to have him executed. He attempted to get around it, but in vain: “In my law,” the monk told him, “it is a sin not to keep your word.