Buddhist socialism is a political ideology which advocates socialism based on the principles of Buddhism. Both Buddhism and socialism seek to provide an end to suffering by analyzing its conditions and removing its main causes through praxis. Both also seek to provide a transformation of personal consciousness (respectively, spiritual and political) to bring an end to human alienation and selfishness. People who have been described as Buddhist socialists include Buddhadasa Bhikkhu, B. R. Ambedkar S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike, Han Yong-un, Seno’o Girō, U Nu, Uchiyama Gudō, and Norodom Sihanouk.
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Look at the birds: we will see that they eat only as much food as their stomachs can hold. They cannot take more than that; they don’t have granaries. Look down at the ants and insects: that is all they can do. Look at the trees: trees imbibe only as much nourishment and water as the trunk can hold, and cannot take in any more than that. Therefore a system in which people cannot encroach on each other’s rights or plunder their possessions is in accordance with nature and occurs naturally, and that is how it has become a society continued to be one, until trees became abundant, animals became abundant, and eventually human beings became abundant in the world. The freedom to hoard was tightly controlled by nature in the form of natural socialism.
I am recently planning to write about Buddhist socialism. Just like there is Christian socialism as a system of ideas in Christianity, there must be also Buddhist socialism in Buddhism.
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- What is Dhammic Socialism?
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