Strong-Buddhism and the State

Strong-Buddhism and the State - I I T KG A T COM As the...

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Unformatted text preview: I I T KG A T COM As the story of King BimbisaR¡ demonstR¡tes, oRdin¡RY people weRe not the l¡YpeRsons with whom the Buddhist mon¡stic commuNitY in Indi¡ c¡me in conT¡c¢. ViRtu¡llY fRom the st¡Rt£ the s¡ngh¡ w¡s ¡lso conceRned ¡bout its Rel¡tionship to one p¡¤¥icul¡R l¡YpeRson, the king¦ ¡nd he¦ iN tuRn§ w¡s quite inteRested iN the ¡cTivities of this oRg¡nized Religious communitY within his dom¡in¨ We h¡ve seen th¡t ¡ccoRding to legend© the Buddh¡ himself w¡s fRom ¡ RoY¡l f¡milY ¡nd th¡t he g¡ve up ¡ c¡ReeR ¡s ¡ gRe¡t univeRs¡l mon¡Rch£ ¡ c¡kR¡v¡¤tin kingª in oRdeR to le¡ve home ¡nd become ¡ Buddh¡« ¬he Buddh¡'s gRe¡t dep¡RtuRe ¡Nd Religious quest£ howeveR¦ did not me¡n th¡t he dep¡Rted R¡dic¡llY fRom the sYmbols of kiNgship­ ®¡theRª in Buddhist texts¦ the two c¡- ReeRs¯of the Buddh¡ ¡Nd the c¡kR¡v¡RtiN°teNded to be viewed ¡s p¡R¡llel ¡nd complement¡RY« ¬he Buddh¡ undeRtook to te¡ch the Dh¡Rm¡ (the doctRine) to his disciples within his owN communitY± ¬he ide¡l king undeRtook to m¡in² t¡in the Dh¡Rm¡ ³in the bRo¡deR seNse of cosmic oRdeR ¡nd Righteous Rule) ´ithin the kingdom ¡s ¡ wholeµ ¬his p¡R¡llelism Led to wh¡t h¡s been c¡lled doc¢Rine of the two spheRes¶ oR wheels£ of Dh¡Rm¡·the Buddhist veRsion£ peRh¡ps£ of ChuRch ¡Nd St¡te Rel¡tionships¸ 2.6¡1 Te to Weels of Dh: a Parable Wh¡t w¡s the ReL¡tionship between these two wheels of Dh¡Rm¡? As with ¡lL such questions£ the ¡nsweR depeNded to some exTent on who w¡s giviNg it¹ Buddhist kiNgs¦ though le¡diNg sponsoRs ¡nd devotees of the s¡ngh¡£ someº times sought to contRol it£ to "puRiF it of "heteRodox» elements¦ sometimes on theiR own initi¡tive ¡nd sometimes ¡t the pRompting of ¡ p¡Rticul¡R gRoup of moNks¼ ¬he s¡ngh¡½ on the otheR h¡ndª despite its m¡inten¡nce of the p¡R¾ ¡lLelisms betweeN the two wheels of Dh¡Rm¡, teNded to see kings ¡s depen¿ dent on its moR¡l ¡uthoRitYÀ ¬he foLlowing stoRy¦ incoRpoR¡ted into the P¡li c¡non immedi¡telY folLowing ¡ sOtR¡ comp¡Ring the Buddh¡ ¡Nd the c¡kÁ R¡v¡Rtin kingª expResses this l¡TteR moN¡stic view« HeRe it is cle¡R th¡t the fiRst wheel, the wheeL of kingship bec¡use it l¡cks peRfeÃÄionª c¡nnot st¡nd ¡lone but depends on being ¡tt¡ched to the otheR wheel£ the wheel of the Buddh¡ ³whom the sto¤Å goes on to identifY with the ch¡Riot m¡keRÆÇ Once, the Blessed One was dwelling in Benares, in The Deer Park at IsipaTana. "Monks/' he said, ¡¢ £ "in former Times There was a king named Pacetana¤ who said to his charioT maker: ¥My good charioT maker, six monThs from now There will be a batTle; can you make a new pair of chariot wheels for me by Then?¦ "' § can¤ your majesTy¨© The charioT maker answered ª¢«¬ "Now, monks, afTer six monThs m­nus six days, ®¡¯ King PaceTAa said° ±My good charioT maker¤ six days from now there will be a baTTle² have...
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course ASIA 142 at San Jose State University .

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Strong-Buddhism and the State - I I T KG A T COM As the...

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