Advertisement
Tuesday, Nov 30, 2021
Outlook.com
Essay

The Warlike Bodhisattvas

Indian religions were all practically ambivalent vis-a-vis violence. Persecution existed, but widely spread state patronage kept bloodshed to a minimum.

The Warlike Bodhisattvas
Illustration by R. Prasad
The Warlike Bodhisattvas
outlookindia.com
2017-12-26T15:04:48+05:30

A strong tradition of non-violence is one of the most striking features of ancient Indian religious history. Jainism and Buddhism, both of which were non-god-oriented and emphasised renunciation as the path to liberation, stress the importance of ahimsa. Non-violence also appears in the Brahmanical tradition, in association with the idea of the sannyasi and as one of the elements of samanya-dharma or sadharana-dharma, the dharma that applies to all, regardless of social class or gender. Within Hinduism, non-violence also came to be associated with Vaishnavism.

To what extent did religions centred on non-violence rem­ain true to their original principles in the long run? Are followers of ahimsa-oriented religions more non-violent or compassionate than others? To what extent did the ethics of non-violence have an impact in the political sphere, especially in the attitudes towards war?

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Meet Parag Agrawal: The New Indian Origin CEO Of Twitter

Meet Parag Agrawal: The New Indian Origin CEO Of Twitter

The incoming CEO is an IIT Bombay graduate who joined Twitter a decade back after having worked at Microsoft, Yahoo and AT&T in research positions.

Omicron: WHO Warns World Should Be Wide Awake

Omicron: WHO Warns World Should Be Wide Awake

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the emergence of the highly mutated omicron variant underlines just how perilous and precarious our situation is.

Omicron Scare Looms Over IND Tour Of SA, BCCI Awaits Govt Nod

Omicron Scare Looms Over IND Tour Of SA, BCCI Awaits Govt Nod

Several sporting events have been cancelled due to the new variant of the coronavirus, Omicron. India are scheduled to tour South Africa for a full series.

How New Covid-19 Variant Is Impacting Travel Across States In India

How New Covid-19 Variant Is Impacting Travel Across States In India

India has issued fresh travel restrictions for international travellers coming from 'at risk' nations in the wake of the Omicron outbreak across several countries in the world.

Advertisement