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International Conference :

Buddhism and Philosophy


» Conference room 1 «
: His Majesty the King’s 80th Birthday Hall,
2nd Floor

Commentator :
1. Phramaha Somboon Phanna
: Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University
2. Asst. Prof. Dr. Somwang Kaewsufong
: Chiang Mai University
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 19

Development and Decline of Buddhism in South India

Prof.Dr. R.Gopalakrishnan,
Formerly Professor and Head,
Department Of Philosophy,
University Of Madras, Chennai—600 005
India
+91 98411 71138
Email: gopalki_rls @yahoo.com

Abstract
In this paper an attempt has been made to describe the entry, growth and
disappearance of the globally reputed Buddhist faith and practice in the Southern
part of India especially in the Tamil land. Grandeur of Buddhism lies not only in the
scriptural texts, teachings and practices, etc. but in the organisational techniques
like the Sangam paved the way for the spread of Buddhism in all parts of the world
through royal patronage, scholarly interpretations, and collective modes of
propagation and institutionalized methods of worship in the monasteries. The
methodology resorted to here are both historical and descriptive, but highly
informative and explanatory.
The entry of Buddhism was traced from the historical records especially of
the travellers, and the notes of eminent emissaries, literary sources, excavations,
inscriptions, art and architecture, viharas etc. The development of this faith has been
studied from the grand epics like Manimekalai, Virasoliam, Kundalakesi etc. The
Tamil emperors, even though followed different native religions, they did not hate
the promotion of Buddhist practices both individually and collectively. They
constructed monasteries and donated lands and revenues to sustain them. The
Bodhisattvas too contributed their might in maintaining the prestige of Buddhism
through their commitment and praxis.
Besides the historical back ground, this study accounts for the existence of
Buddhist centres in different parts of Tamil country as well as the origin of new cult
known as the avalokitesvara. Also more information are obtained from the
inscriptions, sculptures, art and architecture regarding the prevalence of Buddhism in
the Southernmost part of India. It is to be proudly noted that this faith did not
flourish without philosophical themes and doctrinal expositions.
The final section deals with the reasons for the decline and disappearance
of Buddhism from this land and concludes with a few suggestions to revive this holy
faith in this soil.

Keywords: Dhamma, Sangha, Bodhisattva, Brahmi scripts, viharas, arahats, akaram,


paramitas, mantras, inscriptions and rock-cut carvings.
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Introduction
Buddhism, a living faith of the world, founded by a prince turned
enlightened sage of the aristocratic Sakya clan, has made significant contribution to
the realm of religious pursuits as well as intellectual interrogations, cultural heritage,
social stability, moral enhancement, artistic development and literary zeal. Though it
declares life being filled with sorrows, it is not subscribing to pessimism; it
apparently inculcates the profoundest egoism, yet it is extolled for its loftiest moral
denominations; it denies the metaphysical self, but it insists total responsibility for
our actions through rebirth; it denies the existence of a supreme God, still it
guarantees perfect liberation from the turmoil of worldly existence.
Buddhism received royal patronage for its exalted and sublime ideals
along with scholarly support for its continued existence so that millions of followers
embraced this simple religion with high thinking. Above all, this religion advocates
deeply humanism in all spheres and promoted equality at all levels of human
existence. As a well organised religion, Buddhism promulgates universal truths in a
four-fold manner, the theory of dependent origination as an offshoot of the second
noble truth, the famous eight practical pathways to perfection as well as the tri-ratna
(three jewels viz. the Buddha, the Dhamma and the Sangha). These unique and
meritorious doctrines having universal appeal and the magnificent personality of its
founder made this religion more popular since they amalgamated both theory and
practice.

Entry of Buddhism to South India:


Emperor Asoka stimulated strenuous efforts to make Buddhism flourish
through missionary zeal and socio-political service. According to the Ceylon
chronicle Mahavamsa, after the successful completion of the third Buddhist council
held at Pataliputra under the patronage of Asoka and under the presence of Tissa
Moggaliputta of Ceylon during the 3rd century B.C., the emperor sent many monks
along with his son Mahendra to Ceylon to preach the gospel of Buddhism there. It is
highly probable that they must have visited Tamil country on their route to Ceylon.
Again, the origin of Buddhism can be traced to Asoka’s Dharma Vijaya and the rock
edicts II and XIII give a fairly good account of his territory in the 3rd century B.C.
along with the sending of his missionaries to Tamil Nadu and Ceylon. Rock edict II
mentions the names of the dynasties that were prevalent then in the Tamil country
and Ceylon viz. Chola, Pandiya, Satyaputra, Keralaputra and Tamraparni. The last
name in this list is identified as Ceylon while the name Satyapura refers to
Athiyaman and Keralaputra refers to Cheraman.
Even though Buddhism has been out of focus in the Tamil land, it is an
undeniable fact that in the antique past it was one of the centrifugal life forces of
Tamil culture. This faith gave an impetus and invigoratively nurtured the Tamil
language, literature and grammar which can be evidenced from the availability of
several art works and sculptural artefacts that bear the testimony of indelible
Buddhist imprint. In his travel report the Chinese monk Yuan Chwang, who visited
the Dravida (Tamil) country in 637 A.D., mentions about the existence of a large
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monastery (samgharama) near Kanchipuram which served as the rendezvous for the
most eminent scholars and Acarya Dharmapala stayed there and wrote several
commentaries on Pali texts. He also states about the stupa about 100 feet high, built
by emperor Asoka to commemorate the victory of the Buddha over Tirthikas in
religious debate and admitted several people in to his fold. Kanchipuram was a well-
known centre of Buddhism during the regime of the Pallava dynasty in teaching and
cultural activities associated with Buddhism. In the Talaing chronicles, the source
book of Burmese Buddhism the names of ancient Pali rulers like Asokavarman and
Buddhavarman finds a place who visited this centre. Buddhist scholars like Dignaga
and Dharmapala went to North India from Kanchipuram and Bodhidharma went to
China and founded the Zen school of Buddhism (ch’an) based on Mahayana
Buddhism. According to Yuan Chwang, there existed more than 100 monasteries
with about 10,000 monks all belonging to the Sthavira school.
The Chinese visitor refers to the prevalence of a few monasteries in
Malakuta in the Pandiya country accommodating very few monks. He also mentions
about the Avalokitesvara cult in the potaloka mountains. Akitta Jataka refers to
Kavarippumpattinam, a capital and port city of the imperial Chola dynasty, in the
kingdom of Tamila. It also refers to the visit of great monks of Therevada, such as
Buddhadatta, Buddhaghosa and Dharmapala who engaged in religious activities in
Ceylon and the Tamil land. Abhidhammavatara depicts this city as a wealthy and
luxurious one. Both Silappathikaram and Manimekalai, the two grand epics of Tamil
language, refer to Indira vihara, built by Mahendra, son of Asoka, who visited this
town when he proceeded to Ceylon as a Buddhist missionary.“ The spread of
Buddhism in Tamil Nadu is known from the epi-graphical evidences found in its
ancient caves and stone beds. Brahmi scripts in a number of caves have been found in
Tamil Nadu mainly in the Madurai, Tirunelveli and Chengalpattu districts. It is clear
from history that Brahmi script was popularised by Emperor Asoka through his
Dharma vijaya; such scripts are found in almost all places in India. The name Dravidi
or Damidi (Tamili) is given to the South Indian Brahmi scripts.”1. (Murthy, R.S.,
p.XIII). The above name is noticed in a few Jaina works and Lalitavistara, an early
Mahayana Buddhist work.

Development of Buddhism in Tamil country:


We come across a happy blending of all the healthy and wealthy elements
of various sects of Buddhism in the cultural heritage of the Tamils which is vouchsafe
for religious tolerance and harmony in Tamil Buddhism. The evolution of Tamil
Buddhism can be gleaned from the Tamil epic Manimekalai which incorporates the
gamut of the philosophical truths of all the schools of Buddhism including the
mantrayana and tantric trends. We can also notice the indigenization of alien
concepts of Buddhism which promulgates universalism and humanism as the chief
characteristics. As has been advocated by the Buddha, the followers taught his
teachings in the native language so that the laity can easily comprehend all the
complicated doctrines and such a phenomenon took place in the Tamil epic from the
linguistic, literary and cultural perspectives. A large number of philosophical terms
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of Sanskrit has been converted to Tamil in the Buddhist literatures. Though


Manimekalai is a complete Buddhist epic depicting the doctrinal expositions as well
as religious pursuits of this faith, this universal religion has influenced to a great
extent the Thirukkural, Silappathikaram, Veerasoliyam, Kundalakesi, etc. the famous
Tamil literary works. Sathanar, the author of Manimekalai, portrays the Jaina monks
as merciless ones who seldom work for human welfare. On the contrary, he praises a
Buddhist monk, Cankataruman (Sanghadharma) as a benevolent one, committed to
selfless service to humanity.2 (V,II.45-70) He also insists that people must acquire
adequate knowledge of other religions in order to understand Buddhism in a better
manner. ”When we read Manimekalai, we come across the following features which
are largely characteristic of Buddhist literature. The first feature is the frequent
occurrence of events pertaining to the previous births of the main characters. The
second one is the abundant use of supernatural events. We come across these two
aspects in Cilappatikaram too. But Cattanar uses these techniques more profusely
and in a more complex way than Ilanko. These aspects can be seen embodied in a
large measure in other Buddhist works written in other languages. This leads us to
assume that Cattanar might have had some Buddhist works as his model.” 2
(Hikosaka Shu, p.55)
The Manimekalai uses the expression, Taanam taankic cheelam thalaininru
which means ‘upholding charity and prominence in keeping the precepts’ which are
similar to the paramitas of Bodhisattva of Mahayana tradition. Though the author
portrays the heroine, Manimekalai as a Bodhisattva, he composes this text for the
common man to comprehend the basic doctrines of Buddhism from Tamil
perspective and cultural heritage i.e. his audience are not the bhikku and bikkuni, but
mainly the upasaka and upasika. Saathanar translates the ratna-traya viz. the
Buddha, the dharma and the sangha as mummani—the three gems—which are
common to both the monks and nuns of Buddhism and the lay people as well.
“Aravana Atikal (a Bodhisattva par excellence) tells Manimekalai that good men
would eschew the ten kinds of evil deeds and follow the silas and take upon
themselves the doing of dana. Consequently, they will be born in one among the
three classes of beings – the devas, human beings and Brahmas. They will live a life
of bliss and ecstasy as a result of their good deeds (nalvinai). This clearly shows that
the instruction given here is for the Buddhist lay people. When preaching the bhikkus
and bhikkunis, there will be normally no mention about taking birth in Heaven. As
such, it is clear that the order dana, sila and taking birth in Heaven. But sila and dana
can be included into Rokusuinen, i.e. the Buddha, dharma, samgha, sila, dana and its
result viz. taking birth in heaven.Therefore, with regard to Buddhist doctrines
expounded in Manimekalai, it is necessary to know that these doctrines are meant for
the Buddhist lay people and not for bhikkus or bhikkunis,” 3 (Hikosaka Shu, p.98)
In the thirtieth canto of Manimekalai, Dvadasanga-pratitya sautpata or the
twelve linked chain of the theory of dependent origination is expounded which are
explained through Aravana Adikal one after another in excellent classical Tamil
terms with simple and easy illustrations. Virasoliyam, a Tamil grammatical work by
Puttamittirar, is a contrastive-transfer grammar for Tamil with Sanskrit, to teach
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Tamil to Buddhists who came from Sanskrit background. The polemics of Nilakesi, a
Jaina work and the Sivagnana Siddhiyar, a Saiva philosophical treatise develop
arguments against the Buddhist concept of ‘no soul’ (anatma) theory in a manifold
dimension. While criticising Buddhism from the Saiva religious point of view, St.
Thirugnana Sambandhar, an infant saint, points out the salient points of Buddhism.
Scholars have found out there are several similarities between Thirukkural, a moral
compendium in Tamil and the Dhammapada, a Buddhist work, not only in
conceptual framework but in the illustrations too.

The Cult of Bodhsattvas as Envisaged in Tamil Literature:


There are three modes of moral and spiritual life in Buddhism:
1. Sravakayana or Arhatyana and
2. Pratyeka-Buddha-yana (these two are collectively called Dvi-yana
and belong to Hinayana)
3. Bodhisattvayana or Eka-yana belonging to Mahayana
In the Manimekalai, the ideal of arhat has been noticed. The father of
Kovalan who is the father of Manimekalai resolved to become an arhat to observe the
dhamma possessed by kindness (anbukol arathirku arukanen). They preferred
secluded life to attain salvation rather than showing altruistic concern. Those who
resort to the pratyeka (private or solitary) Buddha develop supreme knowledge and
self- enlightenment without the guidance of a master nor do they intend to become a
guide to others. The merit of a Bodhisattva is greater than that of an arhat or a
pratyeka. Universal salvation is the prerogative principle of Bodhisattvayana. In the
Nilakesi, a Jaina polemic Tamil epic, for the first time the word Bodhisattva explicitly
finds a place. (Pothicattuvar puttar enappatu neethiyar periyaar—the Bodhisattvas
and the Buddhas are great for their ethical excellence).
“In Kundalakesi ‘Vada Carukkam’ of the same text, the ideal of
Bodhisattva has been picturesquely portrayed. Herein, it is stated that until he
reached Nirvana, he envisaged what was pleasant to others and preached the dharma
to all beings. He never aspired any benefit for himself. He suffered for the welfare of
others. He protected those who took refuge unto him. He was the Lord known as
Potiyan, (i.e.Bodhisattva). In this context it is to be remembered that the hymnologists
of the Saiva devotional literature (Tirumurai) have also used the word Potiyar to
mean the Bodhisattvas and the followers of Buddhism.”4 (Kandhsamy, S.N. pp. 268-
269) Viasoliyam, the Tamil grammatical work, Avalokitesvara has been glorified as a
Bodhisattva. He is regarded to be the preceptor of Saint Agathiyar who learnt Tamil
from him and disseminated the language in the world. The concept of Bodhisattva is
in total agreement with the major details furnished in the Pali and Sanskrit texts
especially in the cultivation of paramitas and constant practice of dhutangas.
(Nilakesi)
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Buddhist Centres in Tamil land:


The contact of Buddhist monks in Tamil land was due to the commercial
interaction of traders with Tamil merchants from the Mauryan country, besides the
deputation of missionaries by Emperor Asoka to spread Buddhism. From the
excavations carried out in different parts of this land so many material evidences are
found like polished ware shreds, punch-marked coins, panel of the Buddha, viharas,
copper image of the Buddha, Buddha Pada made of Palnad stone. There were four
important Buddhist centres prominently bear the testimony of the prevalence of
Buddhist worship and cultural activities.

1. Kanchipuram: Before 7th century A.D. nearly 10000 monks inhabited


and practised Buddhism in more than 100 monasteries, as envisaged by Yuan
Chwang. According to Manimekalai, a Caitya was located here. In
Tharumadhavanam a Chola king by name, Ilankilli built a Buddha Pidakai. At
Kanchi, Aravana Adikal, Manimekalai, Dharmapala, Anurudhar (the author of
Abhidhammathasangaha) and other prominent monks lived and practised
Buddhism. Mahendravarman, a Pallava king wrote Mattavilasa Prahasanam, a farce
literature, mentions a vihara known as Raja Vihara. A grey ware fragment bearing
Brahmi letters “Putalatisa” a name of a Buddhist monk and a small circular structure
connected with the votive sthupa and a few remnants of Buddhist sthupas have been
unearthed in the archaeological excavasions.
2. Kaverippumpattinam: Buddhdatta and Buddhaghosa lived here in a
famous monastery and the latter wrote Abhidammathabaram. From Melaiyur a
bronze image of Maitreya was discovered. Both Silappathikaram and Manimekalai,
two Tamil grand epic literatures glorify Indhira vihar supposed to be built by
Indhira, a celestial deity of Hinduism and some scholars are of the opinion that this
vihar was built by Mahendhira, the son of King Asoka.The monastery where
Bhuddhabatta lived in kaverippumpattinam was built by Kanakadasa, a donor of a
slab of the Amaravathi sthupa. Manimekalai speaks about Cakkaravalam,
Kuccarakkutikai, marble mandapas and Uvavanam.
3. Nagappattinam: It was a port city and a prominent centre of
Buddhism during the Chola dynasty. History reveals that Narasimhavarman, a
pallava king built a Buddhist temple here known as China Pagoda, at the behest of a
China king to enable the Chinese merchants to worship Lord Buddha. Vajrabodhi,
the eminent Buddhist Acharya (661-730 A.D.) went to China and preached Vajrayana
there and presented the famous work Maha Prajna Paramita to the Chinese king. The
Chola kings Rajaraja and Rajendhira patronised Buddhism by all means. From a
concealed chamber five images of Buddha were discovered here.
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4. Madurai: Maduraikkanchi describes that womenfolk accompanied


by their husbands and children visiting a Buddhist vihara with flowers and incense
to adore the Buddha. According to the Pulankurichchi inscription, a palli (settlement)
existed for the dwelling of the followers of Buddhism. At Putamankalam a Buddhist
centre also existed as envisaged in the Vinayavinichchaya of Buddhadatta.
Besides these four major centres, there were other centres prevailed to
promote Buddhism in Tamil land. A number of artefacts were found at Karur with
Buddhist origin. A golden ring bearing the figure of Mithuna couple may have been
influenced by Amaravati art. At Vanchi, the erstwhile capital of Karur, there was a
beautiful caitya worshipped by the devotees of Buddha. The recent discoveries of
Buddhist remains in places like Madras, Kadahathur, Polumampatti, Rameswaram
etc, show that the Kings and chieftains welcomed the worship of the Buddha cult.
The Avalokitesvara Cult: Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva occurs in the
Mahyana texts and it has been viewed and explained from Tamil perspective. “ The
main tenet of this cult is to generate in one’s own self the thought of enlightenment
and to fulfil the vow of becoming the Buddha, forgoing entrance into Nirvana in
order to remain in this world as long as there are creatures to be saved from
suffering” 5(Hikosaka,Shu, p.177). A mountain in the Southern part of Tamilnadu
known as Potiyil is said to be a sacred place for the Hindus and equally for the
Buddhists. Yuan Chwang holds that the Buddhist devotees worshipped
Avalokitesvara at the foot of this mountain and this Lord yields to their rquest and
appears in the form of a Pasupata Tirtika or mahesvara, a manifestation of Lord Siva,
the supreme God of Saivism.
“Manimekalai informs that near the water-fall in the Potiyil mountain a
Vedic ascetic Virucchikan was doing penance. It also informs us that Buddhists from
Vitiyatara loka like Kancanan also visited the peak of the potiyil mountain
(Manimekalai XX.II.22) According to Taranata at the time of Dignaga,Santivarman
visited this mountain and in the period of king Siladitya, Candragomin climbed it
and made a puja for Dhanyakataka tower. He constructed one hundred small
temples of Avalokitesvara and died there. He also states that in the region of
Dharmapala, there were two monks, Suddhaguhya and Buddhasanti, who climbed
the Potalaka mountain. They prayed to the stone statue of Avalokitesvara there, and
both of them obtained mystic power.”6 (Hhikosaka,Shu, p.131) The ascetics of the
Vedic era as well as the Hindu devotees in general engaged in the performance of
religious rites at the foothill of this mountain. The Buddhist monks and the lay
devotees adored Avalokitesvara at a higher place of this mountain as evidenced from
the above citation.
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The latter part of the name Isvara in Avalokitesvara refers to Siva-


Mahesvara, which clearly indicates some relationship between the Buddhist cult of
Avalokitesvara and the Hindu cult of Isvara. “Moreover, Yuan Chwang associates
Avalokitesvara of Potaloka with Pasupata Tirthika or Mahesvara. Avalokitesvara is
also portrayed as sitting with his consort Tara, which reminds on of Siva and Uma.
The Buddhist text called Taracukkam refers to Avalokitar as Potalagiri Nivasini.
According to this work, Avalokitesvara bodhisattva is seated in this mountain with
his consort Tara. (Pl. Nos.2,3) The worship of Tara was popular in Tamil Nadu which
is obvious from the prefix Tara in many place names in Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari
districts such as Taraputur and Taravilai. It may be argued that the present temple at
Taracuram in Tanjore was originally a temple dedicated to Tara. A rock near Potiyil
hill is named Taravattam parai after the deity. Thus Tara is referred to as Cintadevi in
Manimekalai. Avalokita is portrayed in some instances as androgynous like Siva in
the form of Arthanarisvara. This type of association seems to be very popular in
South India. A bronze statue of Avalokitesvara found at Nagappattinam of Tamil
Nadu bears ample testimony to this.7 (Ibid. pp.132-133). Hence we can safely
maintain that there existed a synthesis of Avalokitesvara and Mahesvara in the
Potiyil Mountain which was in sacred esteem both by the Hindus and the Buddhists.

The Decline of Buddhism in Tamil Nadu:


In the long run Buddhism lost admiration among the people in the Indian
sub-continent in general and the Southern peninsula in particular since it could not
gain the royal patronage continuously. The rulers retrieved the past glory of
Hinduism and the common man embraced that faith vigorously. The kings and
chieftains not only promoted Hindu faith in letter and spirit but also did severe
damages to the existing monumental devices of Buddhism so that the once famous
religion had become a glory of the past.
Since Buddhism did not advocate a Supreme, Powerful, Benevolent and
Merciful God, people who could not satisfy their devotional instinct developed
contemptuous and disdainful outlook. Again the anatmavada or the no-soul theory
also played a havoc in the withering away of Buddhism, since men of little
intelligence could not understand the significance of re-birth and karma theory in the
absence of an abiding spiritual substance. Since Hinduism promulgated these verities
and substantiated appropriately the notions of bondage and liberation, people were
attracted towards that religious philosophy.
Several scholars made logical refutations to all the philosophical doctrines
of Buddhist schools of thought and had shown that the arguments of Buddhism are
unviable to have a strong foothold in India, and hence the edifice of that faith with
ideologies was dwindled.
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“The decline of Buddhism seems to have begun from the period of


Cattanar, the author of the great epic Manimekalai. Manimekalai gives a glowing
account of Buddhism in Tamil Nadu. The epic provided the public with a new
awareness of the Buddhist religion. The internal causes for the decline of Buddhism
may be mentioned as follows:
“The development of the devotional movement of the Saiva and Vaishnava
saints and mystics was a fain force in destroying the foundation of Buddhism in
Tamil Nadu. The emotional Bhakti movement became dominant and it was a blow to
the rational and philosophically inclined religion of Buddhism. From the 6th century
A.D. up to the 12th century, Buddhism had to struggle for its existence. The activities
of Manikkavacakar and Nana Campantar (Thirugnana Sambandhar) were
responsible for the suppression of Buddhism and Jainism. Thirumankai Alvar looted
Buddhist viharas and carried away things. The Advaita philosophy of Sankara which
attracted vast populations and the establishment of the Hindu monasteries
contributed much to the quick decline of Buddhism in Tamil Nadu.
“The political and cultural factors also contributed to the decline of
Buddhism. The emergence of the imperial Colas with their allegiance to Caivism was
one of the main factors for the decline of Buddhism in Tamil land. Besides, the
emergence of the agrarian class, supporting the Saiva faith, was against Buddhism
which was previously maintained by the merchants and traders. As the conditions
were unfavourable, Buddhist monks left Tamil Nadu and took shelter in the
neighbouring countries. They were given a cordial reception in Ceylon and East
Asian countries, where the genius of the Tamil Buddhists developed to the highest
level enriching the art, culture and architecture of the Asian countries…..”8 (Murthy,
R.S. pp. XIV-XV)
Thus we can notice Buddhism being remained orphaned in all the realms
without sufficient patronage and efficient encouragement. The monks who
repatriated to the neighbouring countries found them as the most propitious soil and
started a new epoch forgetting their homeland.

Conclusion:
“A comparative study of the development of Buddhism in Tamil Natu and
the neighbouring countries clearly shows the fact that when Buddhism was in decline
in Tamil Natu, it witnessed tremendous growth in the neighbouring countries. The
monks of Tamil natu, who had left from their native land, have contributed a great
deal for the growth of Buddhism abroad. In this sense we may say that the Tamil
Buddhist genius was not destroyed but sublimated in another direction where it has
grown with fresh vigour and vivacity. We may cite a host of Buddhist monks such as
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Bodhidharma and others who moved from South India and developed Buddhism in
other countries.
“Nevertheless, the impact of Buddhism can be seen in all aspects of Tamil
Culture. It has expressed itself in exquisite forms and given an enduring colour and
richness to Tamil culture as a whole. It has exerted a profound influence on the
existing religious and social institutions, language and literature as well as on art and
architecture. One can recall the attempts made by the Tamil and Malayalam poets of
the twentieth century to revive Buddhist tales and message in their themes of
humanitarianist orientations. It should indeed be a purposive and fruitful study to
examine the impact of Buddhism after its decline, on different facets of Tamil artistic
expression and experience during the various phases of the development of Tamil
culture.”9 (Hikosaka Shu, p.202)
The genuine and right thinking and ambitious aspirations of a Buddhist
Scholar from abroad is getting fulfilled in a slow and steady phase. The disgruntled
scholars on Hindu faith especially in the promotion of social inequality and caste
menace not only embraced Buddhism but also giving new orientation to invite
followers to this very ancient faith. Contemporary scholars with historical knowledge
and literary genius also do their might in providing a new impetus for the revival of
Buddhism and restoring the abandoned and dilapidated monuments and relics with
pristine purity and magnificent glory. Let us hope for the day when a large number
of followers of Buddhism dominate in the historically, culturally and socially well
repudiated and recognised Tamil Country.

References:
Samuel, John, General Editor, Buddhism in Tamil Nadu, Collected Papers (Institute
of Asian Studies, Madras, 1998)
Buddhism in Tamil Nadu—A New Perspective (Institute of Asian Studies, Madras,
1989)
Ibid.
Tamilum Tattuvamaum (Manivasagar Patippakam, Madras, 1976)
Buddhism in Tamil Nadu A New Perspective
Buddhism in Tamil Nadu Collected Papers
Buddhism in Tamil Nadu A New Perspective
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Zeal for Sustainable Social Development: Exploring Buddhist


Ideas and Traditions

Dr. Anand Singh


Dean, School of Buddhist Studies
& Civilization
Gautam Buddha University, India-
201310
Email:
anandsinghbuddha@gmail.com

Abstract
While many of the world religions extended their help to adopt
sustainable development and to reduce anthropogenic activities. Buddhism is not
lagging behind with its energetic engagement and high socio-ethical spectrum. Here
Buddhism is not a religion of introspective withdrawal but to rejuvenate the world by
providing alternative mean to social development. It is both in east and west is
willing to learn the root cause of ongoing social crisis and conflict. Buddhism is
instrumental in commendable efforts to make awareness and provide solutions. The
neo liberal capitalism and multi-national corporations encourage maximization of
profit at the expense of human values and environmental sustainability. The
multinational corporations or ‘Transnational Tyrannies’ have monopolized two third
of world trade and became protector of universe by possessing special rights and
privileges. Their capitalist zeal treats environment as a sub-system of capitalism. so it
is to be exploited in order to lubricate the wheels of the capitalist machine with an
insatiable desire for profit perpetuating to greed, hatred, moral turpitude and
negligence towards environment (Sivaraksha, Economic Aspects of Social and
Environmental Violence from a Buddhist Perspective’, pp.47-48, 2012). The
globalization of economy has also led to social and cultural crisis, poverty and
powerlessness in some pocket of the world. It has eroded the traditional community
structure and accelerated the depletion of natural resources (Janeb, 1998). The third
world economies have virtually succumbed to intensive consumerism mainly those
produced by the transnational corporations.

Keywords: Social Development, Exploring Buddhist, Zeal for Sustainable

Introduction
The people have been induced to abandon their traditional way of life and
culture evolved over thousands of years and most suitable to their local conditions
and environment. The labourers are compelled to sacrifice their services at low wages
in the name of industrialization. The peasantry has been displaced for the sake of
large infrastructure projects. The people are taught to compete and indulge in
excessive consumerism which encourages greed, violence and delusion in the society.
It is the globalization of tanhā or craving. It may be craving for the gratification of
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passions or of eternity or for the success. The vast chunk of the population who are
lured by the consumer oriented mercantilism will never have the means to acquire
the commodities portrayed to them. So they consider themselves inferior, alienated
and culturally backward. The globalization brings about certain groups of people
who are not currently capable of coping with the increased competitive pressure to
compete with the rest of the world. With economic hegemony the dominant nations
control the political institutions and economy of the dependent nations who need
their financial and economic support. Such bondage leads to enormous debts and
erosion of traditional institution for the underdeveloped nations.
At such circumstances new secular institutions preloaded with new social
and cultural values have been emerged. Due to presence of industrialized market
economy, traditional social and economic structure based on agrarian economy has
been jeopardised. Buddhist world view has tried to transform itself by
accommodating modern socio-economic values. It paves the way to prepare ground
for not to succumb to wrath of modernization and westernization (Swearer, 1991).
The principle of interdependence may be a positive step aimed at curbing this deep
rooted problem. It encourages the principle of equality and justice together with rule
of law for all the nations. The paticca samuppada explains that ‘every existing thing is
both conditional and that nothing can exist independently. Everything depends in
some way or the other conditionally on one-another (S.C. Chatterji, 1984). It
recognizes the existing reality of a thing, a person or a nation. It always tends to make
a greatly united world in which all the people regardless of nation, religion, culture
etc. can co-exist and live independently and harmoniously. In the context of
globalization the interdependence also means that whatever principles, policies and
actions taken should have positive impact. The Buddhist teaching of non-
discrimination and equality are related to this understanding. It recognizes the
complexity of causation that produces conflicts and suffering and clarifies the issues
that leads to reconciliation and solution to the problems (Bloom, 2012). The mindset
of the Buddha was to establish equalitarian ethos which could cut across the
tribalism and the distinction of race or religion He asserts that lineage does not enter
into man’s being either good or bad, nor do good look or wealth (Majjhima Nikāya,
II). It provides a new way of thinking for current situation and act as potential and
competent force for the process of globalization to cope with international
competitiveness and challenges to meet global demand as well as develop co-
operative working environment. Sulak Sivaraksa coined “small ‘b’ Buddhism”
signifying Buddhist doctrine with transformative relevance and pragmatic
methodology to engage with contemporary problems and their solutions. He argues
suffering as incorrigible human tendencies about consumerism, materialism and
unwarranted possessions which are threatening the world. He visualises that short
term political and economic gain are creating chaos and suffering which can only be
stopped with mindfulness and rational thinking. For it he uses ‘b’ in place of ‘B’ for
Buddhism to emphasize changed vision of Buddhism to counter self-conceited ideas
engulfing the world (Donald).
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The economy oriented by consumerism always encourages new desires


and demands among people. It is like the hungry ghost with huge appetite but sultry
neck to take and digest huge quantity of food. All such demands accentuates to
suffering by causing frustration as their desire for lasting and wholly satisfying
fulfilments are constantly disturbed by changing and ever producing world, and the
human mindset always wants things to be other than they currently have. They also
embolden to act upon the various acts whose results lead to further disturbing
situations and sufferings (Harvey, 2013). Buddhist ideals constantly put forth the
society are reasoning, moderation, and harmony, a constant awareness of the
primacy of Buddhist teaching, charity as a way of life, compassion and wisdom.
Buddhist virtues can encourage the making of cooperative societies with need based,
sustainable economies rather than greed oriented profit market economies
(Stephanie, Dharma Rain: Source of Buddhist Environmentalism). The society is
conceived as universal as distinguished from discriminating society. It is a
community of righteousness anywhere and everywhere uncensored by the rules of
regional or national affiliation. It can be developed on vissāsa (mutual trust and co-
operation in place of conflict and acquisitiveness), ahasa (non-violence), samata
(equality of all human beings) etc. In the era of globalization people are becoming
more aware about the rights and privileges. Because of mutual hostilities and
competition there is a growing sense of deprivation, intolerance, aggression, revenge
etc. Buddhism can play an optimistic role in keeping the direction of the globalization
in such a way that helps to maintain and protect the cultural identity of a nation, at
the same time revolutionizing the system in terms of human development. The
society is preoccupied with the things that leads to strife, exploitation and imbalance
(Majjhima Nikāya, II). It tries to enhance appreciation of life and overall
improvement. The Buddha says that who does not wish for his own prosperity by
unfair means is wise, virtuous and religious. The ideal society envisaged by the
Buddha foresees that the state has responsibility to wipe out discrimination and
ensure the full employment for all sections of society. It repudiates vision of future
based on the notion of progress as an unlimited growth leading eventually to
destructive consumerism and strives for a just world order which will end hegemony
and all other forms of hostilities. The person who carries out his purpose by violence
is not a right person. Those who know the advantage and disadvantage of their
doings are wise. The role of dhamma is to act as custodian of moral and cultural
values and to be all pervasive force. The growing economic interdependence,
increased cultural reciprocation, rapid advancement in information technology and
geo-political challenges are binding people and bio-sphere more tightly in a single
global system. This process also sprouts differences everywhere fuelled by regional,
ethnic diversity and disparities. The ideological and religious conflict is taking heavy
toll on human lives. The dhamma preaches that greediness is the worst of disease and
the contentment is the greatest wealth and trust is best of relationship. It gives the
notion of desirability of evolving a culture prelude to modern social, economic and
administrative institutions and formulates the most consistent theory of human
suffering known to mankind. It ridicules an unbridled materialism and mundane
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passions. In the age of globalization, development will have to be defined in cultural


and ethical terms and not merely in terms of material wealth.

Conclusion:
The people’s participation will require decentralization of power,
distributive justice, egalitarian ethos and material security. The underdevelopment
within a nation is characterized not only by the production of pseudo values and non
values but also by mal-distribution of genuine credentials. The over-consumption by
the privileged classes goes hand in hand with under consumption by the masses
(Sachs, 1979). The materialism is engulfing each and every society of the world and
is eroding their vibrant cultural values. In globalized world, to gain wealth, power
and to fulfil the insatiable sensual pleasure through undesirable means are becoming
the most domineering values. The people are obsessed with packaged food and
standardized products sponsored by transnational organizations; especially the
younger generation of is more addicted to western variety of foods in place of
traditional healthy and hygienic food products. The food items are now not preferred
by their intrinsic value of nutrition but on basis of their multinational logo and
advertisements. The sustainable and traditional patterns are fast changing. In the east
the traditional joint family structure is on the verge of collapse and the nuclear family
structure is becoming the norm of the society. The monoculture of globalization has
been promoting a system totally at odd with the existing values of the traditional
societies. It encourages to negative direction of kamma leading to unemployment,
disintegration of traditional family and community structure and imbalance in
ecosphere. When the society is facing such kind of difficulties motivated by
unwholesome and evil roots, it will lose the healthy structure and will not be able to
survive. Buddhism states such implications. The approval or disapproval of policies
is to articulate the voice of the people. Any economic development scheme cannot be
planned without paying due attention to this factors. A nation has to make a serious
effort to carve out both an alternative vision of the modern society and an indigenous
path leading to it. The much of traditional knowledge and expertise have been lost in
the name of modernity and science, depriving common people everywhere of help in
the time of need.

References:

Bloom, A. (2012). Globalization and Buddhism. Retrieved 3 26, 2014, from


http://www.shindhar manet.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/pdf/Bloom-
Globalization.pdf.: http://www.shindharmanet.com/wp-content/ uploads/
2012/pdf/Bloom-Globalization.pdf.
Donald, K. (n.d.). Swearer op. cit.
Harvey, P. (2013). Buddhist Reflections on “Consumer” and “Consumerism”. Retrieved 3
25, 2014, from Journal Of Buddhist Ethics: http://blogs:dickinson.edu/
buddhistethics
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 33

Janeb, H. P. (1998). Globalization from Buddhist Perspective. Kandy: Bodhi Leaves No.
146, Kandy: Buddhist Publication Society.
(n.d.). Majjhima Nikāya, II.
(n.d.). Majjhima Nikāya, II.
S.C. Chatterji, &. D. (1984). An Introduction to Indian Philosophy. Calcutta: Calcutta
University Press.
Sachs, I. (1979). Development, Maldevelopment and Industrialization of Third World
Countries. Development and Change, X(4).
Sivaraksha, S. (2012, 4 23). Retrieved from Economic Aspects of Social and
Environmental Violence from a Buddhist Perspective: http://www.jstor.
org/stable/1390560
Sivaraksha, S. (2012, 3 23). Economic Aspects of Social and Environmental Violence from a
Buddhist Perspective’, pp.47-48. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/s
table/1390560,: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1390560,
Sivaraksha, S. (n.d.). Economic Aspects of Social and Environmental Violence from a
Buddhist Perspective. Retrieved 4 23, 2012, from http://www.jstor.org/
stable/1390560
Stephanie, K. a. ( Dharma Rain: Source of Buddhist Environmentalism). Introduction,
p.xvii.
Swearer, D. K. (1991). ‘Sulak Sivaraksa’s Buddhist Vision for Renewing Society’, p.18,
Crossroads: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, Vol.6, No. 2,
1991. Pp.17-57. Retrieved 3 28, 2012, from http://www.jstor.org/stable
/40860347: http://www.jstor.org/stable/ 40860347
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Continental Philosophy and Buddhist Texts

Dr. Jeff Wilson

Abstract
Some of the concepts contained in the Sanskrit and Pali Buddhist texts do
not have clear equivalents in the English language. Behind each language lies a great
background of cultural symbolism and linguistic usage. Terms such as ‘insight’,
‘consciousness’ and even ‘spirituality’ are understood in the West according to a
cultural heritage that has its roots firmly embedded in Judeo-Christian narratives and
cosmologies.
However, ‘continental philosophy’, with its notions of the ‘deconstruction’
of culturally constructed ideas and the transcendence of the symbolic self, are related
directly to Buddhist epistemology. The Pali term anatta or ‘non-self’ resonates
strongly with the postmodern issue of the symbolic self, an illusory sense of self that
emerges from a radically objective interpretation of the world. Both Buddhism and
continental philosophy share the idea that all perspectives are conditioned
viewpoints. The Pali term saṅkhārā expresses this notion of conditioning and the five
aggregates of existence (pañcupādānakkhandā) demonstrate the way this conditioning
takes place by means of the human tendency to cling to sensory objects and to
identify with personal feelings and thoughts.
Many Buddhist texts employ narrative strategies such as metaphor,
analogy and semiotic flow to express contemplative experiences and levels of
consciousness that cannot be adequately described in the third-person oriented,
propositional language of Western academia. Academic terminology is dominated by
a thirst for objective facts because its roots still lie in a Cartesian logico-empiricism. It
is therefore necessary to consider the great distance between the linguistic and
narrative foundations of Buddhism and present-day Western culture: it becomes
necessary to find an appropriate terminology or ‘language’ to fruitfully interpret the
wisdom of these ancient documents. This paper will argue that the form of
expression employed by continental philosophers such as Nietzsche, Heidegger,
Foucault and Derrida is just such a language.

Keywords: Continental ,Philosophy, Buddhist Texts

Introduction
Continental philosophy can be said to have its origins in the writings of
Nietzsche, to progress through the phenomenology of Husserl and Heidegger and to
reach its fruition in the French postmodernism of Foucault, Derrida and Kristeva. Its
heavy emphasis on the importance of the study of language makes possible the
science of ‘semiotics’. Semiotics, or semiology, is the study of language as signifying
process. It is a process in which the written or spoken word, as well as the visual
image, is said to invoke certain associated concepts in the mind of the beholder or
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listener. Few words and images however can be said to be associated with just one
clearly defined concept. Rather the reverse is true: each signifier tends to produce a
constellation of signifieds, a complex array of meanings and values. This leads many
researchers in the fields of language studies, philosophy and the human sciences to
question the ability of language to faithfully represent that which is ‘in the world’.
(Francisco J Varela,1991 : 15)
To adopt this questioning attitude to language, it is argued here, resonates
strongly with that of the early Buddhists, who considered the apparent substantiality
of the objective world as the result of a human desire for certainty and solidity.
Clinging to the objects of desire, according to this view, restricts the freedom of a
person to adapt to momentary changes of circumstance, creating the illusion of a
static world and a static personality which is imprisoned within its intransigent
boundaries. One system taught by the Buddha to describe the process by which this
imprisonment occurred was known as the khandhas (Skt: skandhas) or ‘aggregates’,
the ‘five constituent elements of being’. (Monier Monier-Williams, 2002 : 1256) In a
general sense, the term khandha refers to the notion of an aggregation of separate
elements. In an applied sense it relates to the aggregation of the elements that
constitute a personality, an ego. The five khandhas - material form (rūpa), feeling
(vedanā), perception (saññā), karmic (or ‘conditioned’) influences (sankhāra), and
consciousness (viññāna) - together constitute the ‘sensorial aggregates which
condition the appearance of life in any form’. (Rhys Davids and William Stede, 1994 :
233)
Everything that is available to sense perception is thus compounded or
conditioned. What appear to be straightforward substantial objects are aggregations
of various sensory processes. One such process (rūpa) identifies the form of an object
while another (vedanā) evaluates the object emotively. The aggregate of sankhāra (the
karmic dispositions or karmic formations) could be expressed in Western terms as the
influence of a person’s previous experience or history of structural coupling with the
world, his or her history of interactions with an environment. By recognising the
khandha nature of perception, practitioners come to realize - in contemplative
experience - the epistemological notions of impermanence (anicca), discontent (dukkha)
and no-self (anatta). That is, he or she experiences the impermanent nature of
phenomena through a direct recognition of the processes that compound the various
perceptual elements into an appearance of substantiality. The ego comes to be seen,
from the perspective of insight, as “simply five ‘heaps’ (khandhā) of psycho-physical
phenomena”. (Sangharakshita, 1993 : 199) This paper suggests that the doctrine of the
five aggregates resonates in such ways with certain theories of signifying process that
are employed in continental philosophy.
The aggregates construct the familiar phenomenal world we know by
joining together our impressions, habitually-acquired meanings, values, and our
personal feelings; that is, our feelings of desire or aversion for the object. In a similar
fashion, through the signifiers and invoked concepts of the occidental signifying
process, the phenomena of the world come to acquire definite meanings and values.
Through recursive interactions with phenomena in particular cultural contexts we
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come to regard these meanings and values as fixed and immutable. We learn to read
the world as if it were a text. The meanings that we read into the world affect our
perceptions of the world. Continental philosophy, in a similar way to Buddhist
epistemology, views ordinary perception as compounded and constructed. Like
Cervantes’ character, Don Quixote, (Miguel de Cervantes, 1987 : 104) whose
perception of the world is dominated by the romantic novels he has read, we learn
who we are and what is expected of us by constantly referring back to stories told to
us in childhood and we demonstrate our knowledge of this text by acting out the
heroic adventures of the characters portrayed. Like the Buddhists of the Perfection of
Wisdom sutras, whose aim was to transcend the mundane world of
conceptualizations, the challenge of the continental philosophers is to escape from the
text, to avoid the constructed meanings and values that distort understanding, and to
disrupt and deconstruct the processes implicated in these distortions.
Semiotics, as the French theorist Roland Barthes has pointed out,
recognizes three terms as constituting the signifying process; the ‘signifier’ (the word
or image presented), the signified (the concept ‘seen’ by the mind) and the sign (the
larger, metaphorical meaning). This third term, the ‘sign’, is the ‘associative total of
the first two terms’ (Roland Barthes, 1993 : 97) and adds a whole new dimension of
significance to the original concept. Barthes gives the example of a bunch of roses that
a man gives to his wife: in this context, the roses signify ‘passion’. They have taken on
a metaphorical or symbolic meaning as they appeared in this particular context. The
word ‘rose’ is spoken and the image of a red flower appears in the mind’s eye of the
listener. But here, the emotions and personal history of the man and wife are engaged
in the signifying process evoking an entire flood of significations, narratives and
mythologies. It is only when the three elements of the signifying process arise in
relationship that we receive the whole message in the form of ‘passionified’ roses.
(Ibid, p.98.) These roses, delivered in a romantic context, become weighted with fresh
value; something is created which was not there before. They are weighted with
passion and the participants’ history and mythical associations are brought into play.
It can be said then, that when the object and its concept appear in a
particular context they are swamped by a deluge of secondary significations: surplus
semantic value is added according to the recursive usage of the sign, its genealogy
and mythology, in the history of the culture, and the individual, to which it belongs.
The basic sensory value of the first two terms becomes a mere primary material from
which the third term - the sign - draws its greater meaning. The simple sensory image
provided by phenomenal experience and the concept to which it is arbitrarily yet
uncomplicatedly related, contribute to the creation of a new metaphysical reality
which is at the same time something more and something less than the original
perception.
The khandas work in a similar way. They constitute a similar analysis of the
signifying process. When they arise together in various combinations they form
particular perceptions, meanings and cognitive events. They are the five constituents
of being but they are also known as the five aggregates of clinging
(pañcupādānakkhandā) because they are the attributes of a person’s personality that the
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person is attached to. The individual identifies with his or her own personal
thoughts, feelings and perceptions and this leads to an overindulgence in a
narcissistic sense of selfhood. Just as continental philosophy views the self as a social
construction created from a mythical use of language, the Buddhism of the
prajñāpāramita texts sees it, and reality itself, as a ‘linguistic construction’ that is
mistaken for a ‘self-existing’ entity. It arises from the khandas and refers to ‘personal
awareness’ rather than to reality. (Lex Hixon, 1993 : 120)
Every thought, like every perception of self, is a creation of the five
aggregates and cannot reveal the independent existence of external objects. Each
perception is to be treated as an interaction between knower and known. In the
aṣṭasāhasrikāprajñāpāramitasutta (Perfection of Wisdom Sutra), Subhuti, a disciple,
asks the Buddha what in fact is to be understood by the expression ‘the world’. The
Buddha answers that the world is to be understood in terms of the khandhas
(aggregates), which are ‘empty of own being’. (Edward Conze, [trans] 1973 : 173) In
other words, not only must human perception of an objective world be mistrusted on
the grounds of the arbitrary nature of the senses, feelings and habitual mentation but
the aggregates themselves must be considered as having no true existence. The
‘marks’ of rational thought are mere appearances, signifiers pointing to insubstantial
referents; they are metaphorical recreations which are only ‘directed [onto] external
objects’. (Ibid, p.174.)
The human need to create meaning and order out of the overwhelming
diversity of phenomenal experience produces the metaphorical nature of the sign
which constructs itself through a process of resemblances rather than identities, as
Michel Foucault demonstrates in Les Mots et les Choses. (Michel Foucault, 1966 : 32-59)
The term ‘sign’ comes from the verb ‘to signify’ and produces both linguistic
concepts and visual images in its attempts to communicate. Since the renaissance of
classical Greek thought, the West has employed a form of language that minimizes
the visual. Foucault suggests that knowledge was characterized by resemblance until
the end of the sixteenth century when Cartesianism reduced the function of the sign
to that of creating clear and distinct identities. The third-person, objective perspective
that produces the propositional language of present-day scientific thought follows
Descartes in its attempt to reduce the metaphysical aspects of the signifying process.
Yet the sign continues to seize upon certain aspects which ‘this’ and ‘that’ have in
common, creating in the process a third ‘thing’ which presents itself as both ‘this’ and
‘that’ in combination. If all the details could be seen, together with the associative
total of the constitutive elements of the sign, a clear and inclusive view of the object
might emerge that was free from habitualised metaphorical projections. Because the
object shares similarities with others of its kind, it is dominated by, and embedded
within, universalizations.
A similar process is recognized in Buddhism. When bare consciousness of
the object or sensual image that is immediately available to perception encounters the
emotional, volitional and precognitive dispositions of the perceiver, a more specific
cognition is produced, a cognition that is conditioned by the previous mental habits
of the person (sankhāra). Buddhist contemplative practices are concerned with
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disrupting these previous habitual processes in order to see the object more clearly
and in a more transparent fashion. (Jeff Wilson, 2017) This can be rendered by
Jacques Derrida’s notion of a ‘primitive meaning, the original, and always sensory
and material, figure’, which, while not ‘exactly a metaphor’ is a ‘kind of transparent
figure’ that is as close as it is possible to get to ‘a literal meaning’ or ‘sens propre’.
(Jacques Derrida, 1982 : 207-271. p.211) Meditation, at its most basic level, strips the
object of the narratives that conditioning has attached to it and frees consciousness
from its habitual associations.
In Buddhist practice, the main object under deconstruction is the self.
‘Cetovimutti’, the freeing of the mind, is achieved through what Japanese Zen
patriarch Dogen referred to as a shedding off of the ‘accumulation of habits’ which
constitute what we think of as the ‘self’. (Dogen, 1986 : 29) Delusion is created as we
experience the world with the ‘burden of the self’, which is just a ‘bundle of mental
habits’ and ‘ingrained views’. (Ibid, p.30) To perceive objects or cognitive events as
unconditioned phenomena it is necessary to transcend these ingrained views through
meditation. From the perspective of continental philosophy it is to deconstruct the
specific interpretations and meanings which can themselves be seen to have been
created by the conventional usage of the sign in its own cultural history. Dogen’s
insight, that the self is a burden, artificially constructed from mental habits, shows
that meditation is concerned with appreciating the pure phenomenon of this
‘passionfied’ rose by separating out its second-order, metaphorical meaning. That is,
such contemplative practice aims to reinstate the sensory, transparent and ‘literal’
meaning of the phenomenal experience itself. It is, again from the perspective of
continental philosophy, to transcend the subject/ object dichotomy by ‘bracketing out’
(Roger Brooke, 2000 : 14) the over-conceptualized explanations imposed by the
conditioned mind. To describe phenomena in terms of this conceptualized and
mythologically-determined language results in a distancing of the person from the
experience. Such a deluded and conditioned reading of the world is the result of
unexamined views: it is what Buddhist contemplative practices attempt to transcend,
and that postmodernism seeks to deconstruct.
To state that our representations of the phenomenal world are based on
metaphor is, of course, to suggest that the world we profess to know is not really an
objectively knowable world at all. As Heidegger pointed out, Kant’s influential
‘proof’ of the possibility for empirical knowledge of the world depended on his
assumption that the contents of his own consciousness correlated precisely with the
Being ‘of objects in the space outside of me’. (Kant’s ‘Critique of Pure Reason’, quoted
in Martin Heidegger, 1962 : 247) For the first-century Mahāyāna Buddhists, this kind
of proof of an external world amounted to nothing more than ‘linguistic convention’;
to an exercise in ‘seizing on a material object’ which in truth was simply the product
of a ‘verbal expression without factual content’. (The Diamond Sutra’, in [trans]
Edward Conze, 1973 : 138)
The five terms which constitute the khandhas - forms, feelings, perceptions,
reactions and bare awareness - provide an apparently definite shape and character to
the domain of our experience. Objects are conditioned, for instance, by our feelings
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toward them and by our intentionality (or volition) in regard to them. The value we
perceive to be inherent in them, the meanings we read from their surfaces, as well as
the attachment we form for them; are all products of a personal and cultural
investment. That is, we judge each object to be good or bad from the vantage point of
culturally-created individualism, dependency and egocentricity. The object is thus
metaphorised in the same way as the ‘passionified’ rose: its sign is the product of a
complicity between the form we perceive through bare awareness - the sensory,
material and transparent impression - and the feelings of desire or aversion we feel
toward it.
We become incapable of standing outside of language: we are trapped
within a textually-created, symbolic world of our own making, trapped by desire and
by a world metaphorically constructed by our desire. A desire to escape from the
painful and unsatisfactory aspects of human life, together with a fear of uncertainty,
leads us to invest meaning in things and to become attached to them. The apparent
solidity and permanence of our possessions provides the comforting delusion of a
static and predictable world filled with eternal and unchangeable significance. For
this reason, a major aim of contemplative practice has been to invoke an attitude of
equanimity; to stand between the extremes of desire and aversion. Such an attitude,
rather than forcing humans into subjection to the all-powerful object of their own
invention, creates a space in which to be self-reliant, self-fulfilled and unconditioned.
This paper began by separating the signifying process into the signifier (the
word or external image), the signified (the invoked concept or internal image) and
the sign (the associative total of the first two terms). This western analysis of the way
language works was compared to the Buddha’s teachings by relating it to a signifying
process consisting of the five aggregates. In Mindfulness meditation, it is through
momentary, mindful awareness that the effects of the aggregates are recognized and
their power diminished. These five aggregates are traditionally credited, above all,
with the constitution of the subject-ego. The signifying process, in both Western and
Buddhist systems, is intimately involved with the construction of self. Only through
constant self-recollection does the individual produce meaning and value and only
through constantly consulting one’s own desire does one construct the objects of
desire; the mental contents.
When this habitual and unwholesome self-referentiality comes into contact
with bare, mindful attention, and with the Buddhist epistemological trinity of
impermanence, no-self and discontent, it loses its centrifugal omnipotence. When the
associated narratives and mythologies of the ‘passionified’ rose are stripped away so
that the form, texture and smell of the rose itself can be immediately perceived,
universalisations give way to a mutiplicity of particularities and a conditioned
‘reading’ of the object dissipates, leaving a space for the emergence of insight.
However, while the philosophical deconstruction is theoretical, its
Buddhist counterpart is practical. After being instructed in the adoption of a suitable
posture and the appropriate method of observing respiration, the student of
Mindfulness is introduced to this central doctrine of the aggregates. All other aspects
of Buddhist contemplation revolve around an understanding of these khandhas:
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impermanence, the hindrances, the sense spheres and the accomplishment of


enlightenment. In the Mahāsatipaṭṭhāna Sutta, the discourse on mindfulness, the
student finds the methodology for ‘observing mental contents’. (Vipassana Research
Institute, 1996 : 35) Clinging to the mental contents is considered a fundamental
hindrance to enlightenment. As thoughts, feelings and sensations enter the personal
domain of consciousness they are taken note of in the following manner: ‘such is
matter, such is the arising of matter, such is the passing away of matter’. This
formula is repeated for each of the aggregates: feeling, perception, reaction and
naked impression. Returning always to the observation of respiration, the
practitioner notes the arising of each thought, impression and sensation and observes
its passing away. In this way the impermanence and contingency of each perception
is gradually understood. The symbolic stases - or eternal and unchangeable mental
contents - gradually lose their potency due to a refusal to hold onto them. It becomes
apparent that their status as stases is ultimately due to this process of clinging to
recursive phenomena as objective realities.
Despite its theoretical approach, I suggest that continental philosophy
seeks to subvert the static tendencies of language in a similar way to that of Buddhist
epistemology. When the centrifugal force of the transcendental signifier is lessened
through a deconstruction of the ‘reading’ that supports it, a body of experience is
liberated. While Mindfulness techniques effect this liberation from conditioned
perception through meditational practice, postmodern techniques engage with the
cultural, religious, philosophical and literary sources of the dominant readings of the
world that contribute to the construction of deluded subjectivity. Figures emerge
within the literature of a culture which embody these dominant readings, and which
can be said to personify certain cognitive patterns, just as Cervantes suggests with
the figure of Don Quixote.
‘le asaltó un pensamiento terrible ... y fue que le vino a la
memoria que no era armado caballero’ (he was struck by a terrible
thought ... it came to him that he was not, [after all], a knight at arms).
(Miguel de Cervantes, 1987 : 104)
Don Quixote, like Neo, the hero of the Matrix movie, inhabits two parallel
worlds: the dominant dimension of his conditioning and a dimension that he only
occasionally remembers. Michel Foucault suggests that he is duty bound to
constantly consult his internalized book of chivalric law in order ‘to know what to do
and what to say’ and to discover ‘what signs he should give to himself and to others’.
(Michel Foucault, 1966 : 60) Having appropriated the romances, the world he inhabits
becomes a text, and he lives out the text by assigning its characters to the actual
people he meets. He lives entirely in the symbolic and sees others only as signifiers,
as he ‘reads the world in order to demonstrate that he is of the same nature as the
texts from which he is descended’. The flimsiest resemblances between inn and castle,
between innkeeper and baron are exploited to force the world to conform to this
internal preconfiguration. Content and secure within his symbolic world, he refuses
to look beneath the signifying surface and the people he encounters serve a purely
signifying role.
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Don Quixote, as the centre of his own drama, is a self at the centre of its
solar system of objects. A social ego is produced through the placing of desire’s
attention. Whenever an object is seized upon by desire, a mirror is created which
reflects an aspect of the self. The object, which had hitherto orbited the cognitive
domain (which has the ego as its solar centre), has become the focus of desire and
begins to exert an ‘exorbitant’ pressure on the attention. (Julia Kristeva, 1982 : 14) The
pressure from the world-as-sign is so great that the body, as the site of immediate
experience is thrown off and becomes abject. All that which is not preconfigured in
this conditioned conceptualization of a world, and which has not been appointed a
definite sign, is excluded from this symbolic order. Emotion, jouissance, spirituality
and experiential knowledge are all abandoned in the quest for rational clarity.

Abandoning the Subject: the Concept of Anatta


Both Foucault and Julia Kristeva have questioned the status of the subject
and suggested that, rather than being in control of its predicate, subjectivity is
subjected to the object, to the conventional knowledge of its social genealogy and to its
own desire for the object. To retain and identify with a strong sense of self is thus
recognized in contemporary semiotics, as it is in Buddhist contemplative practices, as
condemning perception to a preconfigured view of the world. Foucault’s philosophy
in The Order of Things and The Archaeology of Knowledge, is primarily concerned with
these preconfigured viewpoints, their origins, and the freedom from conditioning
which can result from a constant vigilance against their re-occurence.
Like Buddhism, continental philosophy sees a direct correlation between
the world read as text and the self as egocentric perspective. The conditioned
worldview is constructed by inscribing significances and values onto the surfaces of
the world in a way that they might better satisfy the needs of the self. This
perspective is not the product of a dispassionate view of the world, or of interactions
with phenomena as they reveal themselves to a viewpoint oriented in equanimity. It
wishes to see its objects as they relate to its own desire. The meaning and value that it
inscribes on its objects, and the way it orders its interactions with the phenomena of
the world are created by the feelings, sensations and mental habits which have
created the self as subject in the first place. Many western neuroscientists now believe
that the neurological functions necessary to human life have no central processing
unit in the brain and nervous system. Foucault breaks down the domination of this
fictional ego “at the centre of thought in order to clear a space for radically ‘other’
ways of thinking and being”. (Lois McNay, 1994 : 4) This resonates strongly with the
sense of vimutti that emerges from the emptiness of anatta.
However, the Pali concepts of self (atta) and no-self (anatta) are far from
simple. What exactly is the ‘self’ that should be abandoned? A similar confusion
surrounds the use of the psychoanalytic term ‘ego’. Freud introduced the term to
distinguish the organisational faculties of the psyche; to stand for ‘reason and
circumspection’ in contradistinction to the ‘Id’ which stood for ‘the untamed
passions’. (Sigmund Freud, quoted in: James Austin, 1998 : 35) Later, ‘ego’ came to
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signify ‘selfishness’, at least in terms of popular consciousness or folk psychology; but


the result is that the two meanings have coalesced to a large extent.
To apply this to Buddhism, it is necessary to restore and separate these two
senses of ‘ego’; as discerning intelligence applied to ordering and self-discipline, and
to self-serving passion which resonates more closely with the Freudian ‘Id’.
Meditation practice ‘strengthens the ego in its original Freudian sense’, while
simultaneously working to diminish self in the latter sense of a ‘selfish pejorative
self’. Although ego in the former sense is maintained in order that the person might
continue to deal with life in a ‘mature, realistic, matter-of-fact way’, the aim of
meditation is to transcend the ego’s limitations in order to rediscover an original
‘natural open domain’ which stretches around and interpenetrates the body and its
senses. It is a perspective that has no mundane function: it obeys ‘no laws of logic
except its own’ and is characterised by ‘suchness or thusness’.
This is the perspective often referred to in religious studies as the product
of ‘alternate’ or ‘mystical’ states. (See for example, William James, 1982 : 380-382 )
which seem oriented, albeit temporarily, in a modality that does not constantly refer
back to a symbolic self or limited ego in order to inscribe meaning and value onto
phenomena. It is frequently characterised by the absence of the usual ‘sense of
exerting active “self control” over events’ as well as by changes to the ‘self/other
boundary which separates our inner self from the outside world’. Practitioners thus
learn to assert control and also to relinquish control: they learn to direct intentionality
toward self-discipline as well as beyond discipline. Will, as Nietzsche knew, is not
wishing or wanting but a dynamic commitment, a commitment that can be focused in
any direction because, fundamentally, it is a ‘submission of ourselves to our own
command’. (Martin Heidegger, 1991 : 40)
The goal of Buddhist contemplative practice, then, is not to destroy or
dismantle self due to a view of the ego’s subjectivity as essentially selfish, dishonest
or sinful, but to discover means of passing beyond the perceived need to constantly
refer back to a super-ego or hierarchical genealogy of predetermined needs and
values in order to inscribe the world with meaning. Looked at in this way, the
illusory substantiality of the symbolic self can be considered, from the perspectives of
both Buddhism and continental philosophy, as a mere sequential chaining-together
of cognitive experiences, together with the labelling of the package as ‘me and mine’.

Beyond the World as Text


Nevertheless, among the ‘three baskets’ (pitaka) into which the teachings of
Theravada Buddhism are deployed, ie, the ‘sutta pitaka’ (the main discourses of
Buddha), the ‘abhidharma pitaka’ (intricate analyses of the suttas), and the ‘vinaya
pitaka’ (mainly concerned with monastic discipline); the ‘vinaya’ represents the
existence of an analytic domain within Buddhism. As the ethical code of
monasticism, it holds the semiotic flow in check and moulds the primary material of
perception into codes, signs and symbols. The Mahayana considered this a
fossilization of ‘vinaya’ symbolism just as Kristeva saw that the forces of stasis are
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 43

under constant attack by the drives, which, in their motility, refuse to be held down
by that which attempts to codify and control them. (Julia Kristeva, 1986 : 94)
The Mahayanists, while holding to the importance of equanimity as the
middle path between extremes of behaviour, mitigated what they saw as an inherent
tendency in Buddhism for extreme detachment, with an emphasis on compassion.
The codified moralism and strict precepts of early Buddhism were deconstructed by
scholars such as Nāgārjuna, and the authors of the Perfection-of-Wisdom sūtras. For
them, ethics were henceforth guided by a direct, moment-by-moment appreciation of
the emotional state of others, a sensibility to the suffering of others and a fluid and
energetic exchange of feeling.

Strive at first to meditate


Upon the sameness of yourself and others.
In joy and sorrow all are equal.
Thus be guardian of all, as of yourself. (Shantideva, 1997 : 124)
Thus, the tendency toward a static and overly analytic attitude to the
world was balanced by the adoption of a more empathic orientation. The
Mahayanists, although continuing to direct their will and intentionality toward self-
discipline, directed it further, beyond the symbolic order and beyond the confines of
doctrine.
Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha.
(Gone, gone, gone beyond, gone altogether
beyond,O what an awakening, all hail!) (Edward
Conze, 1973 : 141)

This statement, probably one of the most sublime of all mystical


statements, refers to a meditational experience beyond the boundaries of language
and of subjectivity. Its insight goes far beyond the habitualised reactions, doctrines
and ideologies that confound subjectivity; transcending both analytic and non-
analytic modalities, by means of a synthesis between structure and play. All that
which was hitherto symbolically confined has been loosened and now flows freely:
only momentary mindfulness can trace the limitless fluidity of thought and
perception which clings to nothing, that finds nothing substantial to which it can
attach itself. An important aspect of this transcendence is a refusal to read the world
as a text, and instead, to open the parameters that confine subjectivity allowing the
free flow of insight and intuition. The terms ‘intuition’ and ‘insight’ sometimes
intersect: Clair Petitmengin-Peugeot’s definition of ‘intuition’ bears resemblances to
the ‘heart sūtra’ passage quoted above:
intuition does correspond to an experience, that is, a
set of interior gestures which involve the entire being
...
[P]reparation [for intuitive cognition] does not
consist in learning, in progressively accumulating
knowledge. It consists in emptying out, in giving up
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our habits of representation, of categorization, and of


abstraction. (Clair Petitmengin-Peugeot, 1999 : 76-77)

A preparatory process precedes the emergence of intuition or insight and


yet it is not an accumulation of empirical or third-person knowledge. It is an
‘emptying out’ of assumptions, and a ‘giving up’ of structural and sequential
reasoning in order to clear a space for intuitive epistemological experience. Structure
merges with play when this non-analytic ‘emptying out’ of habitualised
representations meets and interacts with the analytic discipline required to achieve
bare attention. In this way, the non-analytic cognitive modality contributes to the
setting up of the conditions for the emergence of insight. Kristeva posits two
separate, albeit interactive and interdependent domains within the signifying
process; the symbolic and the semiotic. The latter is characterised by ‘discrete
quantities of energy’ - like music rather than prose - which flow through the body of
the subject who is ‘not yet constituted as such’. (Julia Kristeva, 1986 : 94)
The motility or natural flow of this ‘pre-verbal semiotic space’, (Ibid, p.94.)
is reduced and re-configured into a rigid and fossilised continuity of stases. What had
hitherto appeared as recursive phenomena within a fluid continuum of impulses,
perceptual impressions and sensations, are solidified as continually recurring
phenomena are taken for concrete objective realities. The organisation of social
conduct with its genealogy of morals, which reaches back to origins beyond memory
or imagination, informs and governs this process of solidifying, reinforcing and
amplifying the illusion of a ‘real world’ that constitutes the predicate of an objective,
third-person viewpoint.

Conclusion
Contemplative practitioners, like poets and painters, have as a primary
motivation the re-institution of this pre-symbolic semiotic space. The rigid
constitution of the symbolic is under constant attack during the production of art as it
is during the production of the contemplative states of tranquility, equanimity and
compassion. While in the former, it is the passion of the artist which attacks the
stases, in the latter it is the one-pointedness of attention and (psychic) energy directed
by a will-power turned back against itself. Will, in its conventional sense, as
Nietzsche reminded us, is primarily a will-to-power directed out onto the world and
the other. In contemplative practice, will is brought to bear on the true adversary;
one’s own restlessness and striving for control over external circumstances.
The dissolution of the power of the dominating symbolic domain is closely
connected to the diminishing of the power of the subject-ego. Anatta is central to the
Buddhist enterprise as freedom from the dominance of the symbolic is central to
continental philosophy but both systems share similar concerns. Yet while
investigations into the mechanics of the sign involve lengthy deconstructions and
analyses of origins and genealogies, mindfulness meditation brings an immediate
recognition of the signifying process as it happens. At any moment the mindful
practitioner can see how the phenomena of the present are conditioned, governed
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 45

and determined by the feelings, mental dispositions and habits. When the rose can no
longer be seen, because it has been obscured by habitual representations that have
reduced it to a metaphorical token for something else, an immediate perceptual
experience of the unadulterated flower itself can be restored by practicing the art of
mindfulness and by observing the simultaneous arising of the initial word or image,
its habitually-invoked concepts and its ‘second order’, metaphorical meanings.
Our symbols and over-conceptualised values have taken on a substantiality
that the Perfection-of-Wisdom texts warned against in their doctrine of emptiness.
Continental philosophy is able to mitigate to a certain extent this over-emphasis on
the symbolic through a rediscovery of the pre-verbal semiotic space in which a
release of emotion and intuition can facilitate insight and compassion for others.
However, occidental societies, alarmed by Freud’s discovery that reason has not
succeeded in repressing the untamed passions, tend to devalue the language of first-
person experience in favour of a more propositional vocabulary that can impose
order on the undifferentiated. This produces a textuality in which the third-person,
objective view dominates the first-person, experiential perspective. The Buddhist
texts reveal a balance between the objective and experiential (ajjhattabahidā) and the
realization that another level of knowledge lies beyond that of the intellectual level.
Knowledge obtained through meditation (bhāvanāmayāpaññā) is of more value than
knowledge that is handed down by tradition or arrived at by intellectual means
alone. Perhaps this is because meditation employs the analytic mode of cognition, in,
for example, its observation of body and mind and uses a more poetic, metaphorical
language to describe contemplative forms that involve visualization and the
immediate perception of phenomena.

Reference
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de Cervantes, Miguel. 1987, ‘Don Quixote de la Mancha’, Ediciones Cátedra, Madrid.
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Seasons Foundation/ Book People, Berkeley.
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Archéologie des Sciences Humaines, Éditions Gallimard, Paris.
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Robinson, Blackwell, Oxford.
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The Eternal Recurrence of the Same, [trans] David Farrell Krell,
HarperCollins, New York.
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[eds], The View From Within: First-Person Approaches to the Study of
Consciousness, Imprint Academic, Thorverton.
Rhys Davids and William Stede, 1994, Pali-English Dictionary, Munshiram
Manoharlal, New Delhi.
Sangharakshita, 1993, [7th ed] A Survey of Buddhism, Windhorse, Glasgow.
Shantideva, 1997, Bodhicaryavatara (The Way of the Bodhisattva), [trans] Padmakara
Translation Group, Shambala Publications, Boston
Varela, Francisco J. with Evan Thompson and Eleanor Rosch, 1991, The Embodied
Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience, MIT Press, Cambridge.
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 47

Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan: Translation and Analytical Study

Ven. Budi Utomo Ph.D. (Bhikkhu)


Lecture and Principal of Smaratungga Buddhist
College, Indonesia. Finishing Ph.D. of Buddhist
Studies, Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya
University.

Abstract
This dissertation has three objectives, namely: 1. to examine the origin and
historical development of The Sanghyang Kamahayanikan; 2. to study the main
concept of The Sanghyang Kamahayanikan; 3. to analyze and criticize the versions of
the Sanghyang Kamahayanikan. This Dissertation is a documentary research. The
data and observations, limited to the text of Sanghyang Kamahayanikan, translation,
interpretation and explanation. Sanghyang Kamahayanikan is esoteric Buddhist text.
Venerable Mpu Shri Sambhara Surya Warama it about 929-947 C from East Java, the
successor of Mataram Kingdom, which was shifted to there. The oldest literature was
found at Lombok Island in 1900 CE. Professor Yunboll discussed it on 1908 and was
translated into Dutch language by J. deKatt in 1910. Later Professor Wuff inspected it.
The text is restricted for the teachings in the Mahayana school, with focus
on the tantric path of the Yogacara School using Mantranaya or the Mantra method.
The text has been divided into two parts, each of which can be read independently.
The first section, entitled Sang Hyang Kamahayanan Mantranaya, consists of 42 Sanskrit
verses, each with a related commentary in elaborate old Javanese and regrouped
under 11 subtopics and a conclusion. The second section consists of instructions in 86
verses, written mainly in old Javanese, with a few middle level Sanskrit references.
Both texts belong to the same school and are connected. The text is in a question and
answer form.
The Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan consists of two parts, each of which
forms a separate track. The first part consists of a connected series of Sanskrit
strophes with a more or less elaborate Old-Javanese commentary attached; at the end,
the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya is given as the title. It bears the same
meaning as what is called in the verses mantracaryānaya and generally known as the
Mantrayāna. The second part is a doctrine written in Old-Javanese, punctuated with
a few Sanskrit quotations of less high form, belongs the same school as the first part,
as per the examination of the content. The practical teachings in the Sang Hyang
Kamahāyānikan are set out in four steps. The first, Mahāmārga (the great path); second,
Paramabodhimārga or Paramamārga (the supreme path) has already been dealt in the
Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya and at the first beginning of Sang Hyang
Kamahāyānan Advaya Sadhana. Third, Mahāguhya (the great secret) and fourth,
Paramaguhya (the supreme secret) is the subject of this part of the text. The above
practices are entry levels meditation into tantric practices. Sanghyang Kamahayanikan
teaches how one can attain Buddhahood, i.e. a student must first practice Pāramitā,
then described Paramaguhya and Mahaguhya. As an addition, it also explained the
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philosophy of Adwaya that overcoming the dualism "existence" and "non-existence".


In the book, there is a very detailed description of how a tantric yogi prepares himself
for the spiritual path, from the start until the implementation of multilevel worships.
It is said that the Vajrayana doctrines are meditation towards Five Tathagata. By
worshipping them, a yogi can attain the purity of mind.
The research was closed with relationship existing between the Sang Hyang
Kamahāyānan Mantranaya and a variety of prototypical Esoteric Buddhist Sanskrit
texts, it has been suggested that verses of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya
reflect some kind of Tantric initiation ritual, such like as Jāpa Sutra, Mahavairocana
Sutra, Ardhyaprajnaparamitasutra, Kriyasamgraha, etc.

Keywords: Mahayana, Mantracaryanaya, perfection, meditation

Introduction
Esoteric Buddhism or tantric was developed between 1st -10th Century in
Java, during which period, saw the writing down of Buddhist texts. There has been
exploration of some Buddhist data from Sumatra, however briefly, the transmission
of esoteric Buddhist teachings to the archipelago, and to Java in particular. The
evidence gathered thus far allows us to surmise that early hidden teachings, e.g.
Those that were related to the Guhyasamāja tradition, were already redacted and
thriving in India in 5th to 6th century at the latest. From there, those hidden teachings
spread to regions outside. The two Chinese dhāraṇīs associated with the group of six
dated to the 6th century corroborate development in outlying regions. The Talang Tuo
inscription dated to 684 AD, may provide additional clues on such development.
Chinese records on Fa-xian and Guṇavarman suggest that Buddhism in Java began in
5th century at the latest (Eliot, 1921).
Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan is the title of this old Javanese Buddhist
scripture, which is in three versions, and which were simply named as A, B, C by
Kats, the Dutch translator and critique. He also clarified that the SHK consists of two
sections: the first section known as Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya, meaning
‘The Mantra System of Mahāyāna’ (Kats, Sanghyang Kamahāyānikan (Oud Javaansche
tekst met Inleiding, 1910), while the second section as attested in version B, is called
Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Advayasādhana, ‘The Mahāyāna Method for Attaining Non-
Duality’ (Kats, Sanghyang Kamahāyānikan (Oud Javaansche tekst met Inleiding,
1910). Version A consists of 65 palm leaves as compared to the less complete Version
B which has only 27 palm leaves. Because versions A and B are composed of
Buddhist teachings, they have been called the Bauddha version, while C is called the
Śaiva version, due its teachings, which are mostly of Śaiva origin.
The old-Javanese manuscript written on palm leaves, now known as Codex
Orientalis 5023 of the Legatum Warnerianum, Leyden University Library, was
discovered on the 18th of November 1894 by Dr JÑ Brandes in the palace-compound
of the Balinese King of Cakranĕgara, on the island of Lombok, one of the Lesser
Sunda Islands to the east of Bali. By order of the Governor-General of the
Netherlands East Indies, Dr Brandes, then Government linguist, was attached to the
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staff of the military forces engaged in the Lombok war, with a view to preserve from
destruction all objects of cultural interest to be found, especially manuscripts. It was
probably written between 929-947 AD by Mpu Shri Sambhara Surya Warama
from East Java, the successor of Mataram Kingdom which was shifted to East Java.
The name can be found in the introduction to the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan which
is in only one manuscript of Sang Hyang Tantra Bajradhātu Subhūti, the colophon of
the ‘C’ version of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan records.
The old literary language of Java is commonly known as Basa Kawi or Kavi,
that is the language of poetry. However simply the predecessor of modern Javanese
and many authorities prefer to describe the language of the island as Old Javanese
before the Madjapahit period, Middle-Javanese during that period and New Javanese
after the fall of Madjapahit. The greater part of this literature consists of free versions
of Sanskrit works or of a substratum in Sanskrit accompanied by a Javanese
explanation. Only a few Javanese works are original, which is to say not obviously
inspired by an Indian prototype, but on the other hand nearly all of them handle their
materials with freedom and adapt rather than translate what they borrow (Kats,
Sanghyang Kamahāyānikan (Oud Javaansche tekst met Inleiding, 1910).
All this literature is based upon classical Sanskrit models and its not
distinctly Buddhist although the prose version of the Mahabharata states that it was
written for Brahmans, Sivaites and Buddhists. The Sutasoma, Vighnotsava,
Kunjarakarna, Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan, and Buddhapamutus are purely Buddhist
works and the Tjantakaparva, Arjunavijaya, Nagarakretagama, Wariga and Bubukshah
show striking traces of Buddhism. Some of these works are in accessible, but two of
them deserve examination, the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan (edit with transl. and
noted by J.Kat, 1910) and the story of Kunjarakarna. The first is tentatively assigned to
the Madjapahit epoch or earlier, the second with the same caution to the eleventh
century.

Origin and Reveal History


The Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan was probably written between 929-947
AD by Mpu Shri Sambhara Surya Warama from East Java, the successor of Mataram
Kingdom which was shifted to East Java. In the introduction to the Sang Hyang
Kamahāyānikan to be found in only one manuscript of Sang Hyang Tantra Bajradhātu
Subhūti(Being a Śaiva review derived from the Buddha version, version C must have
necessarily been written after the latter, which must have been compiled in an earlier period1;
furthermore, its Sanskrit verses must have existed before the Old Javanese commentaries were
written1. Roelof Goris suggested on philological grounds that the oldest Old Javanese
commentary is that of version A, which possibly was already in existence in the Śailendra
period: It is therefore not impossible that the older parts already existed during the Śailendra
period [ca. 750–850 ad] as a commentary to a Sanskrit work, and that our A version with its
younger parts might be dated before the time of Siṇḍok, whilst the C version, being a revision,
might be considered Eastern Javanese and recorded during or after the time of Siṇḍok) (Goris,
1926), the colophon of the ‘C’ version of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan records the
following:
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Hail to the Buddha!


(Namo Buddhāya. Nihan Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan, pamәkas saṅ siddhagati
hyaṅ sarbvasiddhi, sira Śrī Sambhara Sūryyāvaraṇa, sira Śrī aryya guru pāda ri vañjaṅ ya ta
keṅәtaknanta dentāji denta, kita jinaputra, makādi savaṅśanira saṅ kumalilir iṅ sima va.jaṅ
guruyaga Śrī Īśāṇa Bhadrottuṅga[l]deva mpu Siṇḍok, mvaṅ saṅ makabvatan Sang Hyang
tantra bajradhātu Subhūti, ya ta kumavaśākna Sang Hyang samayopadeśa mahāyāna
paramārahasya, vәkas iṅ varah saṅ guru sira, apan sira peh niṅ haji, tantra tarkka vyākaraṇa,
sāri Sang Hyang aveśa sira, pāvak niṅ paramārttika, pramāṇa sira, ya ta mataṅnyan hayva
tan prayatna sira jinaputra tumәmva Sang Hyang pustaka kamahāyanan sākṣāt
hinanugrahan de bhaṭāra samyaksambuddhāya kita yan maṅkan) (Chandra, 1997)
This is the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan, the instruction of he who had
accomplished siddhis, Hyaṅ Sarbvasiddhi (all siddhis); he was Śrī Sambhara
Sūryāvaraṇa. He was the noble guru in Vañjaṅ. You have to keep in mind that your
duty is [to study] the scriptures; you, Son of the Victor (jinaputra), are of the same
lineage (vaṁśa) as him, who inherited the freehold [of] Vañjaṅ, which was an offering
to this master (guruyāga) by [King] Śrī Īśāṇa Bhadrottuṅga[l] deva Mpu Siṇḍok, who had
perfected the Sang Hyang Tantra Bajradhātu Subhūti, who had mastered instructions
in the esoteric teachings of Mahāyāna, the supreme secret, the culmination of the
teachings of the Guru, for it is the essence of the teachings of Tantra, logic, and
grammar. It is the quintessence of the holy possession (aveśa < Skt āveśa), and
embodiment of the ultimate reality. It is right knowledge. That is the reason why the
Jinaputra should be zealous when embracing the Sang Hyang Pustaka Kamahāyānan; if
[you do] so, clearly you will be blessed by Bhaṭāra Samyaksambuddhāya (=
Samyaksambuddha?) himself( (edition)
This work is connected with the Javanese King namely Mpu Sindok, (
Concerning the name of Mpu Sindok in the SHK , the name ‘Īsana Bajrotunggaldewa’ in the
LOr 14749, 14806, 15003 is different from that of LOr 5129: ‘Īśāna Bajrotunggadewa’. The
present writer tried to amend ‘Bajrotunggaldewa’ into ‘Bajrotunggadewa’ can be considered
as the vajra name for king SIndok. In esoteric buddhism. A disciple receives the name ‘vajra’
when he is consecrated. The term “vajra”, ‘bajra’ in Old Javanese, is added to his own name.
‘Īśāna Bajrotunggadewa’ or for short ‘Īśānabajra’ is supposed to be the vajra name of King
Sindok.) one of the best-known monarchs, known also as Sri Icana, his Abhiseka-name,
and who must have ruled at least from 929 to 947. This seems to suggest that the
period of Javanese Tantrism can be brought up to the beginning of the tenth century
(Gorris, 1926). It is substantiated by evidence from Further India, where there is
written on an inscription on the occasion of the foundation of sanctuaries in 908 and
911, that two pilgrimages to Java, Yavadvipapura, were undertaken to learn the
siddhiyatra, the art of magic (Huber, 1911). It is evident that the practice of magic was
already flourishing in Java in those days, and although it was not directly related to
Buddhism, as the sancturaries were Sivaitic, it could still be inferred that it was also
found in Buddhism. Sindok lived at the court of the last king who appears to have
ruled over both East and Middle Java, (Not without importance to the subject we
have under examination, is the fact that this monarch writes Bahubajra among his
titles). meaning that with him started the period of glory of East Java, while that of
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Middle-Java was coming to an end. The interesting point is how far can the name of
Sindok and Tantrism in the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan be connected to Middle-Java
too.
The historical dating of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan version C can be
dated as having been written latest in the first half of the 10th century is mentioned in
the colophon. However, studies are still being carried out to determine the actual
date of version C, as well as of the two other versions, which are believed to be dating
from before the first half of the 10th century to the 15th century (Wulff, 1935) There are
two valid points to be clarified: (Jong, 1974) the date of the original composition of
the Sanskrit verses and the date of their arrival in Java. However, his dating of the
Old Javanese text is that it is not be older than the 10th century, from his conclusion on
the general history of the Adhyardhaśatikāprajñāpāramitāsūtra because its verses had
already been found in the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya. (Jong D. , 1974) It is
clear that there are still dating issues regarding the three versions of the Sang Hyang
Kamahāyānikan. Following the publication of the text by Kats, many investigations
regarding the contents of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan have been carried out, with a
main focus on the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya and attempts to make the
readings more accessible, and identification of the Sanskrit sources.
Since the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan is related to Java, it is important to
understand the development of Buddhism in this island, although Sumatra appeared
to be a great centre of Buddhism. Chinese records on Faxian and Guṇavarman
suggest that Buddhism in Java began in the 5th century at the latest (Kandahjaya,
2004).
It is known that as early as the 5th to 6th century, hidden teachings, such as
those of the Guhyasamāja tradition, had already been written and were flourishing in
India and were spread to outlying regions. Evidence of which can be seen in the two
Chinese dhāraṇīs associated with the Group of Six dated to the 6th century. The
Talang Tuo inscription dated to 684 could provide more evidence of such a
development. Guṇavarman sailed by ship to Java at the beginning of the 5th century
and is connected to the eleven gold plates engraved with the Pratītyasamutpādasūtra,
Vibhaṅga, and Upadeśa texts. These gold plates support Yijing’s report, who in the 7th
century, mentioned a Buddhist centre called Kaliṅga (Heling 訶陵
), in Java.1
According to Yijing, Huining 會寧 , a monk, native of Chengdu in Sichuan, lived for
three years in Kaliṅga in Java, after his arrival in 665. He lived there with a famous
monk, Jñānabhadra, who may be the monk of the same name mentioned in the
Chinese canon,as the translator of the Mahāparinirvāṇasūtra.

1
See Lahiri 1986: 36–38. The Balinese Aṣṭa-mahā-bhaya-kliṅ contains the
toponym Kliṅ (Kəliṅ), which has been identified as Java by Goudriaan and Hooykaas (1970:
311). It has been debated whether the name Heling 訶陵
refers to Kaliṅga, also the location of
this toponym. Damais (1964), van der Meulen (1977), and lately Mahdi (2008) are among
those who have contributed to the discussions. While the discussions on Heling may have
pointed to a number of geographical locations, including Kaliṅga in India and the Malay
Peninsula, the Chinese accounts from the Tang dynasty record descriptions of Heling
unmistakably referring to Java (Groeneveldt 1960: 12–15).
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Translation of the Text


The oldest literature was found on Lombok Island in 1900 AD. Professor
Yunboll discussed it on 1908 and was translated into Dutch language by J. deKatt in
1910' later it was inspected by Professor Wuff. This literature was translated
into Indonesia language by I Gusti Bagus Sugriwa. Last translation process is done by
"Translation Team of Buddhist Scriptures Ditura Buddha, Indonesian Ministry of
Religious Affairs. Dharmakirty Sumonggokarso translate and interpreting it in
Modern Javanese Language. Last interpretation done by Sumatijñana in 2000, in
Indonesian Language.
This is the first official attempt at translating the whole of the Buddhist
version of SHKM and SKAS into English. As far as the author has observed, there
has only been partial translations, or private translations, which have not been
published. Such a translation requires a working knowledge of kawi, old Javanese,
Sanskrit and a profound understanding of Buddhism, especially esoteric Buddhism.
Hudaya and Lokesh have to be honored for their pioneering work as Indonesians on
their analysis of this important historical manuscript, which belongs to the world.
Hudaya, in his analysis, has focused more on relating the scripture to the architecture
of Borobudur. Lokesh on the other hand, has done an analysis of version C of the
SHK, which is the Hindu version. There are Japanese versions of the SHK. This is
therefore the first extensive translation in English, done from a totally Buddhist
scriptural point of view.

The Structure of The Text


The main objective of the text is to show how to proceed with the ritual to
attain enlightenment. After reading this text, the students would understand how to
prepare them for the ritual, know whom this ritual could be taught to, the
precautionary measures, and can follow the step-by-step instructions of mantras and
yoga’s to be practiced to become enlightened.
The text is restricted to teachings of the Mahayana school, with focus on the
tantric path of the Yogacara School using Mantranaya or the Mantra method. It has
been divided into two parts, each of which can be read independently. The first part,
entitled Sań Hyań Kamahāyānan Mantranaya, consists of 42 Sanskrit strophes, each
with a related commentary in elaborate old Javanese and regrouped under 11
subtopics and a conclusion. The second section consists of instructions in 86 strophes,
written mainly in old Javanese, with a few middle level Sanskrit references. Both
texts belong to the same school and are connected. The text is in a question and
answer form.

Main Concepts of Sań Hyań Kamahāyanikan


The general concept of Sań Hyań Kamahāyānikan, which is the teaching of
Buddha, includes the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantrayana and Sang Hyang
Kamahāyānan Adwaya-Sādhana as the path to be followed in order to become like a
Buddha. Sań Hyań Kamahāyanan Mantranaya or Great Path of Mahāyana according to
the Mantracarya method. It is said that through the knowledge of this "vajra", this
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highest mantra-rule, that all Buddhas of the past or future attain omniscience, and
that Buddha Sakyamuni, the present Buddha, could drive Mara the Evil one to flight
by the power of this mantra. Therefore, the disciple should also strive to gain
omniscience; follow this path, then he will also belong to the Tathagatas, the self-
created (svayambhu). There are four main concepts of Sań Hyań Kamahāyanan
Mantranaya in this accompanying Theoretical text to the Sadhana or spiritual practice
book. The Sacred Utterance, The Buddha’s have Three Periods, Symbolizing the
Buddha, and Seeds of Enlightenment.
Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Adwaya-Sādhana is the path to be followed in
order to become like a Buddha. It consists of four steps: the Mahā-mārga (the great
path); secondly the Parama-bodhi-mārga or Parama-mārga (the supreme path);
thirdly, the Mahāguhya (the great secret); and fourthly, the Paramaguhya (the supreme
secret). The Paramabodhimārga or the Parama-mārga teaches how the cultivation of all
Buddha’s conducts (buddhacārya) and wisdom leads to the achievement of the ten
perfections (daśapāramitā). The tantric practitioner is now equipped to proceed onto
the third step, which is the Mahāguhya and includes the practice of yoga, bhāvanā, and
Caturāryyasatya or the Four Noble Truths. The Paramaguhya is the tantric rite to attain
non-duality (advaya); and the knowledge of non-duality (advayajñana), which is based
on a sound, breath and visualization method.

Analysis of The Sań Hyań Kamahāyānikan


The Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan also includes concepts from texts in line
with Dignāga’s teachings, such as the Yogāvatāra and the Bhāvanākrama. These
corroborations support the assertion made by the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan itself
that the teachings were received from Ḍaṅ Ācāryya Śrī Dignāgapāda, who lived in
India around 480–540. This fact leads to a possible dating of the earliest parts of the
Sanskrit verses of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan, which could have therefore been
compiled after Dignāgapāda, that is, after 540 AD. The text is restricted to teachings of
the Mahayana school, with focus on the tantric path of the Yogacara School using
Mantranaya or the Mantra method. Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan is a transcription
from oral teaching somewhere on anciently in the ninth century, whom then written
by disciple hears him so that in a particular part there is an expression of petition
teachings and there whose teachings explain it.
It consists of two parts that each form a separate tract; the first is consists of
a connected series of Sanskrit strophes with a more or less elaborate old-Javanese
commentary attached; at the end the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya is given as
the title. By this is evidently meant what is called in the verses mantracaryanaya, and
generally known as the Mantrayana. The second part, a real catechism in Old-
Javanese with a few quotations from the Sanskrit of a much less pure sort, belongs as
the contents prove, to the same school as the first part. It presents us with a set of
comprehensive practical teachings that goes through four steps. They are: one, Mahā-
mārga (the great path); two, Parama-bodhi-mārga or Parama-mārga (the supreme path);
three, Mahāguhya (the great secret); and four, Paramaguhya (the supreme secret). The
first step, the Mahā-mārga, is described in the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan
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Mantranaya. The remaining three steps are explained in the Sang Hyang
Kamahāyānan Advaya Sadhana. When we examine the paths explained in the Sang
Hyang Kamahāyānan Advaya Sadhana, many unusual concepts or terms that
immediately attract our attention, such as yoga and bhāvanā, and the daśapāramitā (ten
perfections).

The Text of Sań Hyań Kamahāyānikan in other Text


The text of Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan as a commentary and teaching of the
Dang Hyang Acariya Dignaga of Yogacara. It is a one of esoteric Buddhist Literature
that represents both the open teachings of exoteric Buddhism and the secret
teachings of the Buddha that are only available to those who have received
proper initiation from a true Vajra Master. The relationship existing between the Sang
Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya and a variety of prototypical Esoteric Buddhist
Sanskrit texts, it has been suggested that verses of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan
Mantranaya reflect some kind of Tantric initiation ritual. The identification of the
majority of the verses of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya makes it
possible to give some indications on these two points. In order to do so it is necessary
to consider briefly the date and the history of the two tantric texts to which most of
the verses of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya have been traced back.
Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Mantranaya originated from the MVA and the
APP, and continued to maintain that the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Advaya Sadhana
reflects both the Caryātantras and Yogatantras, with the Sarvatathāgatatattva-saṅgraha
being the primary source, but unfortunately did not elaborate on how the unique
daśapāramitā and the catur- or the pañcadevī of the Sang Hyang Kamahāyānan Advaya
Sadhana came to exist. Comparative content analysis reveals that, in addition to the
Sanskrit sources that have already been identified in previous studies, a number of
newly identified texts are related to the SHK, namely: Śrīguhyasamājamaṇḍalavidhi,
Śrīguhyasamāja-maṇḍalopāyikāviṁśatividhi, Ratnameghasūtra, Gurupañcaśikhā,
Guhyendutilaka, Yogāvatāra, Yogāvatāropadeśa, Yogabhāvanāmārga, Bhāvanākrama, and
Piṇḍīkrama. In contrast to earlier identifications, these new sources are significant
insofar that they allow us to elucidate many peculiarities of the SHK, as well as other
epigraphic and archaeological documents from both Java and Sumatra.

Conclusion
Sang Hyang Kamahāyānikan is a Buddhist scripture in Sanskrit and
commentary in old Javanese language. It is a treatise (or perhaps extracts from
treatises) on Mahayanism as understood in Java and presumably on the normal form
of Mahayanism. It is a literature in prose of the Javanese People in early periods. It was
written by Mpu Shri Sambharasuya Warana from East Java, the successor of Sri Ishana
(Mpu Sindok) during the reign of Mataram kingdom which had shifted to East Java.
The oldest literature was found on Lombok Island in 1900 AD. Professor Yunboll
commented on it in 1908 and it was translated into Dutch Language by J. De Katt in
1940', and later reviewed by Professor Wuff.
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The scripture consists of two parts with each forming a separate tract; the
first one consists of a series of connected Sanskrit strophes with a more or less
elaborate old-Javanese commentary attached at the end, which the Sań Hyań
Kamahāyānan Mantranaya is given as the title. The verses mantracaryanaya is evidently
and generally known as mantrayana. The second part, a real catechism in old-Javanese
with a few quotations in Sanskrit of a much less higher form, belongs as the contents
prove, to the same school as the first part. It is professes to teach the Mahayana and
Mantrayana, which is apparently a misspelling for Mantrayana. The emphasis laid on
Bajra (that is Vajra or Dorje), Ghanta, Mudra, Mandala, mystic syllables (mantra), and
Devis marks it as an offshoot of Tantric. On the other hand it is curious that it uses the
form Nibbana not Nirvana. Its object is to teach a neophyte, who has to receive
initiation, how to become a Buddha. In the second part the pupil is addressed as
Jinaputra, that is son of the Buddha or one of the households of faith. He is to be
moderate but not ascetic in food and clothing: he is not to cleave to the Puranas and
Tantras but to practice the Paramitas. These are defined first as six and then four
others are added. Under Prajñaparamita is given a obscure account of the doctrine of
Sunyata. Then follows the exposition of Paramaguhya (the highest secret) and
Mahaguhya (the great secret). Later is defined as being Yoga, Bhavanas, the Four Noble
Truths (Aryasatya) and the Ten Perfections (Paramita).

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The Monk’s Duty in Khmer Society : The Living, Role and Participation

Ven. Socheat Cheam*


Ven. Ratanak Keo**
Director of Organization of Buddhism
Social Development, Cambodia*
Ph.D. candidate of the Department of Philosophy,
Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University, Khon Kaen Campus.**

Abstract
Buddhism is very important and valuable religion for Cambodian people
since Cambodia has received and practiced it. Cambodian started to believe and
follow the teachings of Buddha by seeing the great benefit of practicing Buddhism.
Many people became Buddhist, monk and novice. They try to practice and spread
Buddhism throughout the country, especially the monks (Walpola Rahula, 2005-6)
who are the most important one in upholding and promoting Buddhism. They play
very role in adopting and propagating Buddhism due to they are closed to the
Buddha’s teachings. They can learn and practice Buddhism easier than lay people
therefore Buddhism has rooted in the heart of Cambodian people and it continues to
flourish in Cambodia from time to time.
In all periods of history Khmer monks not only play the important role for
Buddhism but also for Khmer culture and tradition as well as the social life of people.
The Khmer monks have many kinds of role and duty such as they have to take care
and develop temple which is the shrine place for venerating (ārama), they have to
learn and practice the teachings of Buddha (dharma-Vinaya), moreover they have to
take care of Khmer and Buddhist tradition and they have to provide the good
education to the people most importantly they act as the moral teacher and
demonstrate the heavenly and happy ways to people. This text is the study about
Khmer monk and it has three main points for discussing and noting. First one it
shows about monk’s life, secondly the monk’s role and thirdly the duty in helping to
solve the political crisis in the country. This text will focus on study and discuss of
Khmer monk in present situation. It will reflect on living, the role and joining of the
monks in Khmer society.

Keyword: The Monk’s duty, Living, Role and Participation

Introduction
Cambodia is a one of the Theravada Buddhist countries in Southeast Asia.
This country is full of surprised and interesting thing. It is a place that Buddhism has
been well observed in ages. King Ashoka sent missionaries (Sarakham, 2006-180) to
the land of Suwannaphumi, which has sometimes been identified as the mainland
Southeast Asian region of Mon (now a state in Myanmar, the state of Mon) and Khmer
(now Cambodia) people.
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Theravada Buddhism has existed in Cambodia since at least the 5th


century. It has been the Cambodian state religion since the 13th century (excepting
the Khmer Rouge period), and is currently estimated to be the faith of 95% of the
population. The cornerstones of Buddhism in Cambodia are the Buddhist monks
(bhikkhu) and the temple (wat). Traditionally, each village has a spiritual center-a wat-
where from five to more than sixty monks and novices reside. The number of monks
varies according to the size and need of the local people. Buddhist monks in Khmer
traditionally were called upon to perform a number of functions in Khmer life from
past up to now. They participate in all formal village festivals, ceremonies, marriages,
and funerals as well as politics. The monks are often healers and, in traditional
Khmer culture, they are the practitioners whose role is closest to that of modern
psychiatrists for the individual and psychosocial trauma in the Cambodian Context
(Understanding the Mental impact in Cambodia, 2007-15). The monks traditionally
occupied a unique position in the transmission of Khmer culture and values.
Otherwise, Khmer monks provided a living model of the most meritorious behavior a
Buddhists could follow. They also provided the laity with many opportunities for
gaining merit. For centuries monks were the only literate people residing in rural
communities; they acted as teachers to temple servants, to novices, and to newly
ordained monks. Until the 1970s, most literate Cambodian males gained literacy
solely through the instruction of the Sangha.
In the recent years most Khmer monks have joint the politics for calling for
justice, peace and happiness of people, for example in past election past year Khmer
monks are allowed to join the election and more ever they joint the protest against
injustice and corruption by calling for freedom and justice in Khmer society. Khmer
monks not only lead the religious activities such as ceremonies but also play
important role to demonstrate the happy way to people and bring harmony and
peace for society as well as the country therefore monk have major functions for
Cambodian life.

The life of monk in Cambodia


Cambodia is good place for becoming the Buddhist monk (Buddhist monk
refers Bhikkhu in Pāli), is a fully ordained), and many lay people join monkhood by
their tradition and belief and support their relatives to become a novice or monk in
countryside, cities and towns throughout the country. After they become monk, they
are known as bonze sand all Cambodian men over the age of 20 serve sometimes as
the bonze. This is seen as a rite of passage into adulthood in Cambodia.In Cambodia
becoming a Buddhist monks means to joining a Buddhist community—the Sangha.
The purpose of the Sangha is to study and practice the Buddha’s teachings (The four
Noble Truth), and whenever possible, to share them with others. Traditionally in
Cambodia, one stays in the monkhood for one, two years or for a whole life in
pagoda after becoming ordained according with their decision. However, as monastic
communities are still in development in many parts of the world, this is not always
possible. In some cases, one can also reside within temple under the guidance and
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protection of the chief of temple. One can become a monk for one, two, three or seven
days when their own relatives die.
Monks share their resources, their habits, their practice and their
personalities in monastic life. Living in a temple one can face many difficulties,
particularly in order to protect their ordination, the code of conduct (Vinaya) for
monastic life that is very explicit in how they live in the temple. Buddhist monks
have to live in the temple (wats), which contain residences and a hall for eating house
and for classes. They live a regulated lifestyle in the temple: there are no fewer than
227 rules to observe, eating after midday, sleeping on a too-comfortable bed,
participating in entertainments such as dancing are all forbidden. They are also not
supposed to participate in politics, though this has changed over time; since the 1980s
some Buddhist monks in Cambodia have taken active role in politics.
Khmer monks follow Theravada Buddhist tradition. They respect the rule
(Vinaya), as laid down by the Buddha, in its many practical rules define the status of a
monk as a mendicant and gives a monk a source of contemplation on what things are
really necessary. They need to go for alms that Khmer Buddhists offer such as the
four requisites (Catupacaya in Pali), food, clothing, shelter and medicines. These are
what lay people can offer for them as a practical way of expressing generosity
(Monychenda, 1995-110), making merits and appreciation of their faith in the
Buddhism. The monks depend on lay people. They know the practicing Buddhist
studies for Sangha as an act of faith and respect to the Sangha. They respond by
sharing merit, spreading good will and the teachings of the Buddha to all those who
wish to hear, irrespective of personal feelings. Monks perform ceremonies at
occasions such as births, deaths and weddings, and more broadly they play a role in
ministering to the people’s social and emotional needs, just like in other religions. In
the mornings, monks leave the pagoda and walk the streets for alms-giving. The lay
people wait for the monks for offering them gifts of food, and the monks give them a
blessing and merit in return.

The Role of Khmer Monk


From past to present time, the monk still have played important role in
Khmer society. The monks have many roles in Buddhism and Khmer society. The
monk is the public individual and cornerstone for people. They have to act for
general. After being the monk or novice, they are different from normal people. They
have to stay in Buddhist community. The monks have to take care the temple by
constructing of the buildings, cleaning and protecting of all things belong to Sangha
in the temple, for example when the buildings are old or broken, they have to mend
or rebuild them again. They can tell lay people to support in developing of twemple.
The monk has the duty to protect and develop in order to make the wats to be
pleasant temple (ārama).
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The duty of the Khmer monks they have to take care of Khmer tradition and
Buddhist tradition. As we know in Khmer rouge regime (Hung, 1997-70), the Khmer
tradition and Buddhism were destroyed but after this regime they are reborn and
developed again by Khmer monks. Until present day although some tradition are
starting to lose due to the globalization modern but the monks have the duty to give
the good advice and sermon leading to take care the Khmer tradition. For instant in
recent year some young girls start to wear the mini short skirt in public but when
they go to temple or meet the monks they always change the dress and wear the
dress of Khmer tradition, especially in all kinds of traditional ceremonies such as
making celebration in the local place.
The Khmer monks are pattern of good conduct and morality for Khmer
people. All people always respect and support to monks all the time therefore monks
have to practice Dhamma-Vinaya strictly since the first day of ordination as monks
and novice by putting their effort in study dharma and practice. If they are old they
will study and practice about Vipassanadhura(Vipassana means insight into the true
nature of reality. vipassana meditation uses mindfulness to eliminate pain, attain happiness
and see life clearly or insight meditation) but if they are young they will practice
ganthadhura, studying the Dhamma-vinaya as we know there are two Dhuras, two kinds
of study in Buddhism.
In all temples they have schedule to practice depending on the rule of
temple or the rule of Shangha. Some temples have Pali scholar or Dharma school.
This way is to force the monks and novice to study the teachings of Buddha and
practice for own happiness and supporting the people. Temple is considered as
center of people from various sides in the villages as well as Khmer society. Monks
act as the teacher of morality. In the ways of Khmer and their standard of living they
have to practice the conduct of Buddhism such as five precepts. In the name of
Buddhists at least they have to hold Sila or five precepts. Some people are very busy
and some are difficulty in earning to live, so they don’t have the time to find to
understand the Buddhism enough. Monks have to give them good advice, the
sermon and the teachings of dharma in temple or schools. For instant Khmer monks
go to teach dharma in public school on Buddhist holyday and give the sermon in all
kinds of activities. When they people have celebrated ceremony. They always invite
the monk to give sermon, therefore the monk can give the good advice and the lay
people can got the good advices.
The last of Khmer monk’s roles is to assist the mind of people and develop
the harmony. The monks who help people by giving of good advice (Dhamma) when
the people have problems, they always start with their thinking sometimes with
unreason that make them doubtful, worried and suffered. When they meet the
problems like this they go to temple and enter to the Upothotha hall (in Khmer
Upothothahall called Viheara) to pray for solving of the problems. Some people ask the
monks the way out of the problems so the monk always helps to change their
disorderly thinking in mind by explaining the cause and reason according to Buddha
teaching and their experiences after that they will be better. On the other hand, in the
daily living some people usually make argument to each other like some people have
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the different idea, opinion and side that there are some argument exist. Although
there are problems but when they go to the tempe and listen to the monks, they will
give up the difference thought and make the harmony. For instant in this recent year
the political situation in Cambodia make them different side, different party, different
idea by their supporting own groups or party. They often say that “we are belonging
to this party…that party”, so sometimes it is cause to make argument to each other.
But when they have listened to the monks they start to give up those things and think
about harmony of nation, tradition and happy living, therefore when they go to the
temple they will become relative and friend in the one nation with the birth and
death.
There are many various kinds of the role and duty of Khmer monks such as
the monks have to take care of temple and make it as ārama, the monks take care of
tradition and Buddhism, the monks provide the good education by acting as the
moral teacher and demonstrate the heavenly and happy ways to people, the monks
practice dhamma-vinaya and take care of mind and develop the harmony of people.

The life with daily activity of monks


There are many Buddhist activities and tradition activities (Saengsai, 2009-
7) including the daily activity. In the whole year, there are many activities take place
in this temple such as Khmer New Year (Bunchulchhnamthmey), Magha Puja, Visakha
Puja, Asalaha Puja, Buddhist lent (culvansa), Kathen and some special ceremonies like
Money flower ceremony (Bunpka). So the temple gets many activities for the monks
and novice.
The daily activities for Khmer monks in each pagoda are particular and
regular. From the morning until night there are several activities. In a day from the
early morning to the time of sleeping, there is a morning chanting (4:30 am to 5:30
am) leading by chief of temple (Monychenda, Buddhism and Khmer developing,
1996- 146) and then around 6:00 am all monks and novices have the breakfast, the
Khmer porridge (generally Khmer monk always take the porridge for breakfast) that is
prepared by novice or temple boys and then they go to learn Pali or Vinaya. After
studying they will go for alms at about 9:30 am, it usually take an hour for going for
alms at the villages. After that about 10: 00 am they return to the temple and then
they have the lunch together at Sala Hall at 11:00 am.
In all temple most of monks and novices are Buddhist students so they
have to go to school, from morning to mid-day and after lunch will go again.
Normally at 5:00 pm most of monks and novices come from the school so the bell is
rung at 5:30 pm for preparing to join the evening chanting. The evening chanting is
started at 6:00 pm. and finished at 7:00 pm. the monks and novices chant at the
Uposatha hall altogether. The schedule can be set differently by the chief of monks in
the temple.
After end of the evening chanting, they return to their own hut (Kutis) and
then they relax and study. Some monks study until 10:30 pm and some study until
12:00 pm and at last they get sleep until midnight. For the special day, like the
Buddhist holy day and the day off, some activities are changed and the monks and
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novices can join many activities in Buddhist holy day, after returning from going
alms, but mostly they don’t go for alms on Buddhist holy day and all the monks and
novices go to Sala Hall for joining the lunch.

The duty of Khmer monks in helping to solve political crisis in the country
Khmer monks are the pattern of Khmer life, while most Khmer follow
Theravada Buddhism, and the religion has been a source of guidance and national
identity, political engagement has taken on different forms throughout the country’s
troubled history. Almost of Khmer people respect and trust in the monks. They
consider the monks as the persons who can give merits, good advice and lead them
to happiness in this life and next life. They believe that the monks who are intelligent,
brave and wise at all due to monks follow the teachings of Buddha. When the monks
tell, teach and lead them. They always follow their advices therefore the monks are
believable and reliable for them.
In Khmer the monks are the important refuge of mental thinking by
leading to calm and happiness of mind. The monks are the leader of doing goodness
and teaching the wrong and right ways to people. Sometimes the monks lead to find
the justice for people in the villages or community when they get the injustice. For
example recently the monks lead and join to help the people who suffer from
injustice of private company and powerful people such as Venerable Loun Sovath, he
always calls for Cambodian human rights (Monychenda, Buddhism and Khmer
developing, 1996-145) and justice of land disputes. He play role as human defenders
who appealed to international community to pay more attention to local people’s
fight for rights and freedom. They also urged their countrymen to keep fighting
against repressive government.
The monks live with happiness, pain and suffering of the people. They
think when people are happy they will be happy but when people are in pain,
difficulty and suffer they will be too. They said that “we’ve been eating our people’s
food, and now our people, our nation, is experiencing injustice, so we can stand and
help them,” and they also join the protest such as sitting on a couch inside a pagoda
near the Council of Ministers in Phnom Penh. Looking at the joining to uphold the
rights of Khmer monks, they join to choose the leader in the recent election. The law
and rule of Khmer monks show that sometimes the monks have the right to vote but
sometimes they are prohibited to vote like in five years later, The Great Supreme
Patriarch Tep Vong barred monks from voting, only to overturn the ban ahead of the
2008 election. In the meantime, however, monks were prohibited from joining
protests via a prakas signed by Non Nget and the Minister of Cults and Religions in
June 2007. Coming up 2013 all monks are allowed to have the right to join the
election. Supreme Patriarch Tep Vong, head of the country's largest Buddhist sect,
retracted his order last year. When asked why, he said, "it is important for
democracy" for monks to vote and he allowed Cambodian Buddhist clergy to join the
voting. Monks were constitutionally allowed to vote, but many who tried were
blocked by local officials or threatened with expulsion from their pagodas. In the
Cambodia context that is related to the monk leader in finding the peace, It was
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around this time that one of Cambodia’s most famous proponents of “engaged
Buddhism,” Maha Ghosananda, who died in 2007, began to lead annual peace
marches across the country. In the biography, Ghosananda walked against war,
landmines and other scourges. He was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for his
work. But historians say that the UN-backed elections in 1993, when monks were
granted the vote for the first time, created a new sort of politicization. Like many
noble ideas outlined in the UN blueprint for Cambodia, suffrage for monks didn’t
work out as planned, and the problem flared up every five years when national
elections rolled around. Around the political situation, the monk have join to perform
their role in choosing the leader (Monychenda, Preahbat dhammik, 1995-43) that why
make them supported and held the different parties. In the note, the top monk, the
monk officers and powerful monks support the government and normal monks and
Buddhist student monks support the opposition party, therefore they always have
the different ideas. Meanwhile other groups of monks from two groups do not
support both sides but try to help all kinds of people. So in the present time the
Khmer monks not only play the important role for Buddhism but also perform the
role in political situation and crisis in the country.

Conclusion
The main points of study on the Khmer monk are to focus on the living, the
role of Khmer monk and the duty in helping to solve political crisis in the country in
present situation. It reflects clearly about their living, the role and participating in the
Khmer society. For the life of monk in Cambodia, they have to live in the temple.
Sometimes they can face many difficulties. They depend on four requisites, food,
clothing, shelter and medicines that Khmer Buddhists (Phangcham, 1990-649) offer
and they respond by sharing merit, spreading good will for them in the return.
Khmer monk has to take care the temple by constructing and building, cleaning and
protecting. They take care of the value (Monychenda, Buddhism and Khmer
developing, 1996-151) of Buddhist tradition and Khmer culture, tradition. The Khmer
monks are pattern of good conduct and morality for Khmer people. They have to
practice Dammar-Vinaya strictly. Khmer monks act as the teacher of morality
(Ven.Dr.Phangcham, 1990-64-65) and develop the harmony by giving good advice,
the sermon and the teachings of Dharma to lay people.
For the activity, traditionally Khmer monks always perform Buddhist New
Year, Magha Puja, Visakha Puja, Asalaha Puja, Buddhist lent, Kathen and Money flower
ceremony. In daily activities they practice the duty particularly and regularly by
joining the morning chanting, evening chanting, cleaning the ground of temple and
going for alms.
In the present political situation, some Khmer monks have joint politics for
calling for justice, peace and happiness of people and joint the protest against
injustice and corruption by calling for freedom and justice for Khmer society. The
monks are believable and reliable, they are important refuge of mental thinking
leading to calm and happiness. They are the leader of doing goodness and teaching
the wrong and right ways to people. They are not only leader of the religious
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activities but also play important role to demonstrate the happy way, harmony and
peace in the country. The monks also join to hold the rights to choose the leader in
the election, although sometimes the law and rule has prohibited to vote. The monks
support and hold the different parties. Some monks support the government and
some monks support the opposition party, meanwhile other monks are the middle
way but try to help both sides in order to make the country calm and peace like the
democratic countries.
Thus Khmer monks perform many of functions in Khmer society such as
they are often healers, the practitioners and modern psychiatrists. They take care and
transmit of Khmer culture and values. Otherwise, they provided a living model of the
most meritorious behavior and many opportunities for gaining merit to people and
they help to solve the political situation and crisis in the country, therefore the Khmer
monks have many kinds of role and duty in leading, teaching and demonstrate the
heavenly and happy ways to people.

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66 (Volunteer Spirit with Sustainable Social Development)

Socially Engaged Buddhism ASEAN’s Invaluable


Legacy to the World Civilization

Dr. Rana Purushottam Kumar Singh


Assistant Professor of Pali,
Nava Nalanda Mahavihara,
(Deemed University)
Government of India, Ministry of Culture,
Nalanda – 803111 (INDIA)
E-mail: rana_purushottam@yahoo.com
Mob:-+ 91-8877328782

Abstract
During the course of his first sermon delivered at Sarnath following his
enlightenment, which was subsequently referred to by the Pāli scriptures and
canonical texts as Dhammacakkapavattana, the Buddha categorically assigned the
monks the great task of moving in the society and reaching out to people for their
well-being. In his own life-time and after his Mahaparinibbāna, this humongous task
was realised with a measure of perfection and poise by the Theras and Mahatheras.
The saddhamma, as it was usually called in its systematised form and essence, was
spread in the Indian Society first, and then in different parts of the world known to
the followers of the Buddha. The quintessence of it is defined by Buddhism as a firm
opposition to, and resistance against all wrong perceptions, malpractices and
retrograde views. Thus, it can be stated without an iota of doubt that Buddhism has
been socially engaged in its nature ever since its birth.
Keywords: Socially Engaged Buddhism , ASEAN’s Invaluable ,Legacy to the World
Civilization

Introduction
Its new face emerged before the world when Vietnam was torn by war
with the United State of America. The war left the economy of Vietnam in shambles
and threw the country into the trap of indigence and destruction to a reasonable
extent. It was in those moments of deep crisis that the new form of Buddhism arose in
Vietnam and mesmerised the world, setting the unique example of a spiritual system
that was veritably capable of donning a protector’s role to save the society.
The concept has been acclaimed and appreciated worldwide, and has
motivated a number of countries and their people to put it in practice. Throughout
Europe and America, this form of Buddhism has been adopted on a massive scale for
its sheer ability to do away with the faulty social, national and international structure;
and reconstruct the new world order as non-violent, non-exploitative and non-
suffering by nature. This can thus be regarded as the ASEAN region’s priceless
legacy to the world with immense potentials to liberate West Asia, Arabs and Africa
from the clutches of violence and starvation.
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Now the question arises as to what were the concepts and scriptural
elements that motivated Thich Nhat Hanh to coin this term, and launch a widespread
initiative to connect the esoteric practices of Buddhism with society and social well-
being. In one of his interviews, he stated, “When bombs begin to fall on people, you
cannot stay in the meditation hall all of the time, Meditation is about the awareness of
what is going on not only in your body and in your feelings, but all around you.” He
further added, “When I was a novice in Vietnam, we young monks witnessed the
suffering caused by the war. So we were very eager to practise Buddhism in such a
way that we could bring it into society.” 1 Thus, the great concept emerged and
became a part of the welfare practices. These welfare practices can be regarded as a
broad-based effort to actualise the traditional Buddhist ideals of wisdom and
compassion in the contemporary world.
It is crucial now to trace the elements of social concern in Buddhist
Philosophy. First of these elements is rooted in the Middle Path of the Buddha, which
teaches that both extreme asceticism and extreme sensual indulgence are to
beavoided. It has categorically emphasized that even the lives and practices of monks
should not be too ascetic while the lives of Buddhist lay followers should not be too
pleasure loving. It is in avoiding these two extremes that the quintessence of the
Buddhist Middle Path can be realised and internalised. There is no gainsaying that
the ‘extent’ of the Middle Path is vast, wide and very flexible.2
The second element of Buddhist Philosophy that is worth mentioning is
Paṭiccasamuppāda (Dependent origination). It suggests that individual betterment
and perfection on the one hand and social good on the other are fundamentally inter-
related and interdependent. Finally, the Buddhist standpoint ascertains that a
minimal amount of responsibility for individual betterment and perfection is
required of all individuals, while maintaining an appropriate degree of social
responsibility.3
Buddhist Monastic Communities have had a long tradition of developing
symbiotic and reciprocal relationship with the laity. As per the traditional practice,
monks and nuns have to shoulder the responsibility of teaching the ‘Middle Path’.
They have gained respect and patronage by their own exemplary moral conduct. Lay
persons have responded by providing food clothing and shelter for the monastic
community and by regarding the ascetic life as a paradigm of the ethical religious
Path.4
Thus, it can be stated that being socially engaged is not new to Buddhism.
What is new is the way Buddhist leaders are engaging each other and are being
engaged. According to some Buddhist scholars, Buddhism, viewed historically, may
first have begun as an escape from the world but subsequently, it turned into a re-
visioning and re-engagement in the world when one experiences it with fresh eyes.5
Since the emergence of the new form of Buddhism in 1963, some striking
features have become evident in its fabric, paradigms and overall dynamics. Now,
the term engaged Buddhism suggests a bigger and far more broad-based social
movement. Drawing on the traditional ethical and social teachings of Buddhism,
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engaged Buddhism now intends to apply them to social life as well as to social issues,
thereby engaging them for social good.6
The vision to Philosophize Buddhism underwent change to some extent in
the 20th Century. What is uniquely novel in case of the socially concerned lot of
contemporary Buddhists is their keenness to ‘adopt many new methods and styles’
indicating that their vision is more international in scope; and that they are more
educated in their training, more democratic and gender inclusive in their
organizations, more aware of ecological destructions, more innovative institutionally
and technologically; and more concerned than ever to move society towards non-
violence, justice, truthfulness and peace.7
Attributed to Thich Nhat Hanh during the 1980s and 1990s, several other
personages have also been associated with this movement. The most internationally
visible leaders of this movement are the Dalia Lama, Eheng Yen, Sulak Sivaraksha, T.
Ariyaratne, Joann Macy, Kenneth Craft, Rev. Nānissara etc.8
All agree that for Buddhism to act as an effective instrument for systemic
institutional change, traditional Buddhists’ emphasis on individual, moral and
spiritual transformation must be adjusted to address the structure of oppression,
exploitation and environmental degradation more forcefully; while preserving the
unique Buddhist emphasis on the practice of mindful awareness and a lifestyle of
simplicity. Though these new Buddhist activities represent a radical departure from
some earlier forms of Buddhist practices, their ‘meaning’ cannot be understood just in
contrast with the latter. Nevertheless, it has been historically that the new forms of
socially engaged Buddhism could not have arisen in traditional cultures unless those
cultures were intrinsically oriented towards adopting positive and productive
changes. Thus, there is a broad agreement among the scholars regarding the
assumption that Buddhism could change because of changes in cultural contexts
where it is adopted.9
Buddhism and social activism can contribute to each other. This is a timely
and potentially faithful field of enquiry. While the main emphasis of the Buddhist
teaching is on inner development, that is no reason for Buddhists to dissociate
themselves from the society in which they live. We are all dependent on, and so
responsible to one another. The fundamental aim of Buddhist practices is to avoid
harming others and if possible, to help them; and this cannot be fully achieved
simply by thinking about it. The phenomenon of social activism is an attempt by like-
minded people to alleviate social problems through drawing attention to them; and
trying to change the attitudes of those in a position to affect them.11 further, as H.H.
Dalai Lama says, we sometimes need isolation initially, while pursuing our own
inner development. However, after you have some confidence and intrinsic strength,
you must remain with, contact and serve society in any field such as health,
education, politics and so on. There are people who call themselves religious minded,
trying to show this by dressing in peculiar manner, maintaining a peculiar way of
life, and isolating themselves from the rest of the society. This is wrong. A scripture
of mind purification says, “Transform your inner viewpoint, but leave your external
appearance as it is.” This is important because the very purpose of practising the
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great vehicle is service of others and this fairly explains why you should not isolate
yourself from society. In order to serve and help, you must remain in the society.12
A basic tenet of this teaching is that Buddhism is essentially active. In this
assessment, Buddhism teaches people to renounce the world, but this does not mean
physically separating oneself from worldly activities. Instead, it implies cultivating
an attitude of cognitive detachment , while still working for others. This is the proper
attitude of Bodhisattava who is able to work within the world for the benefit of
others, without getting dragged down by its negative elements.
In this way, the Buddhists have scope for social engagement. The trend for
this was set by Thich Nhat Hanh. This is the voice of all intellectuals of the world. As
we are aware now, science and technology have seen an unprecedented advancement
over the years, but a sharp degradation in moral and ethical values has also come
about simultaneously. From West Asia to Africa and Pakistan, human life has lost its
value. Buddhist Philosophy has the capacity to transform the theoretical tenets into
reality. Now-a-days, in terms of the spiritual temperature of this era, the result would
be the sheer inability to achieve intangible satisfaction, due to which we are
compelled to accept tangible dissatisfaction. This is because the tastes and values that
characterize our material advancement have been conditioned by nineteenth Century
naturalism and rationalism or by materialism.
Further projections of Socially Engaged Buddhism as the gift of ASEAN
more than half of the world is suffering from different kind of violence, occasionally
sponsored by government or created by terrorist outfits. Is this an un-ending process?
Or can it be controlled by spread of right view or right education? The whole world is
suffering or about to suffer because of wrong perceptions. We have wrong
perceptions of identity, religion and service to the world and God. The Western
sciences which are the product of industrial revolution and are empirical in nature
have created a lot of problem in the world. The Western consumerist theories have
proved to be perilous for the human civilization. Their tools of advancement have
dominated the eastern anthropocentric, ethical and contentment based theorization
and tools of development.
But what about the techniques to make the society non-violent, ethical and
based on human values? The character-building mechanisms are getting weaker
every day. On the other hand, technologies that promote violence are getting more
advanced while humanistic engineering is insufficient for filling in the void.
Now, as the Western methods of development have shown their negative
impact on the society and on various countries, it is the turn of the East to take a bold
global initiative. It will be giant step forward, if the Asian model of development
based on Buddhist Scriptures is adopted and the world gets the opportunity to
closely experience the impact of the Buddhist way of life. ASEAN should propagate
the social concerns of Buddhism. We should appeal to all citizens of the world to
remove the sense of violence from our lives first. Of course, this is not an easy task to
accomplish. It has never been easy because we live in an atmosphere that is charged
with different forms of violence serving as means of recreation and entertainment for
a lot many people. Our popular films show violence which they import from
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Hollywood, the source of violent techniques. We can propagate the recreation


through peace stories and success stories. In this regard, the organisation like ASEAN
should give massage to the world for ending hate crimes against people of colour.
Ethnic and religious violence erupt almost every day in the Middle East, England,
Afghanistan, Africa etc where some people see the emotion of ‘anger’ as righteous
and justified. Asia should propagate that violence which arises from anger, hatred
and fear is unacceptable for civilized people. When we lead a non-violent life all the
time, it will give relaxation to the world around us. Violence is not only physical, but
psychological and verbal as well. It exists in our mind; and can appear wherever and
whenever our own egos lead us to believe that we and our destinies are separate
from others. In other words, violence first begins in the mind when we think
dualistically and when we forget that everyone on earth simply wants the same two
things that we want: happiness and freedom from suffering.

Conclusion
There is a very old Buddhist idea that deals with the four right procedures.
According to it, the first right procedure is to prevent evil or violence from starting.
The second right procedure is to remove any evil or violence as soon as it starts. The
third right procedure is to encourage the acts of peace and non-violence. The fourth
right procedure is to nurture the growth and continuance of actions that lead to good
will and recognition that all our lives are inter-related. We must understand that all
these have extremely significant implications for our society.

Refference
Chapple, Cristopher Key, Nonviolence to Animals, Earth and self in Asian
Traditions, Delhi, srisatguru publication, 1993, p-21,28
Donald K. Swearer, “Buddhism and Ecology: changes and promise”, Earth
(Washington) vol-10, p-22
Herbert Guenther, Reflections on vision and World engagement: ANB publishers,
New Delhi, 1996, P-1
Interview by John Malkin.
John Carman and Mark Juergensmeyer, A Bibliographic guide to the comparative
study of Ethics, Cambridge, Cambridge University, Press, 1991 P-72
Ken Jones, The social face off Buddhism: An Approach to Political and Social
Activism, London, wisdom publication 1989, p-9
Peter Harvey; An Introduction to Buddhist Ethics, Cambridge, Cambridge
University, Press, 2000, P-112
PuriBhanti: Enggaged Buddhism
Russel F. Sizenmore and Donald k (eds), Ethics wealth and salvation: A study of
Buddhist Social Ethics, Columbia; University of South Carolina, Press, 1990
p-30
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Study of Developing the Society through Meditation

Mr. Srihan Kanishka Ariyasinghe


(MA-Colombo ,Bsc-Kelaniya)
Visiting Lecturer in Faculty of Management at University of Sri Jayawardenapura ,
Sri Lanka and Research Fellow in Human Resource Department at University of
Colombo in Sri Lanka.

Abstract

Current world is suffering in many type of issues in different extends. But


there is one common reason for all issues, which s lack of spiritual development of
the society. Therefore people don’t satisfied with their needs and always follow the
desires and making their decisions in unconscious way. This study is about
utilization of meditation as a tool for the world without concerning any other
religious aspects. Buddhist meditation is the best approach for that and here we have
to understand studying and practicing Buddhist philosophy is more important
because it reality and the way of understanding the truth of the nature through
meditation than concerning as a religion. Nowadays many Christians, Muslims also
bend to practice meditation and many celebrities and personalities as well as
international world class organization practice mindfulness meditation for their
wellbeing. Therefore this study talks about how we can utilize meditation as a tool
for minimizing the social issues.
Key Words: Meditation, Social Development, Buddhist Philosophy

Introduction

First it is important to observe the current serious problems in the world


.As stated by, the World Economic Forum's Global Shapers Survey 2017, these are the
World's 10 Most Serious Problems, According to Millennials. This was given to more
than 31,000 18-to-35-year-olds across 186 countries.1. Climate change / destruction of
nature (48.8%) 2. Large scale conflict / wars (38.9%) 3. Inequality (income,
discrimination) (30.8%) 4. Poverty (29.2%) 5. Religious conflicts (23.9%) 6.
Government accountability and transparency / corruption (22.7%) 7. Food and water
security (18.2%) 8. Lack of education (15.9%) 9. Safety / security / wellbeing (14.1%)10.
Lack of economic opportunity and employment (12.1%) Ref: By Abby Jackson , Business
Insider
Then let’s move to reasons for happening above issues .
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1.Lobha:‘greed’, is one of the 3 unwholesome roots (mūla) and a synonym

of rāga and tanhā.

2. Dosa: 'hatred’, anger, is one of the 3 unwholesome, roots (mūla).

3. Moha: 'delusion’, is one of the 3 unwholesome roots (mūla). The best

known synonym is avijjā. Further it is called as missing mindfulness.

- Ref: AnattalakkhanaSutta, Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta


From Nyantiloka, Manual of Buddhist Terms

Now here elaborates about Meditation, mindfulness and Buddhist theories

a.)Meditation:
Meditation is a means of transforming the mind.
Buddhist meditation practices are techniques that encourage and develop
concentration, clarity, emotional positivity, and a calm seeing of the true nature of
things. It can involve a lot of techniques or practices to reach this heightened level of
consciousness — including compassion, love, patience, and of course, mindfulness.
Further, it defines it is all about letting go. You cultivate the power of
surrender. This gives your body deep rest. When you give your body the rest that it
needs, it knows how to heal itself. This happens when you're accessing a state of
consciousness that is different from waking, sleeping, or dreaming.
b.)Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one's attention to
experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the
practice of meditation and other training. The term "mindfulness" is a translation of
the Pali term sati, which is a significant element of Buddhist traditions.

Ref :https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness
C.) 3 Buddhist Theories:
1.)The Threefold Training :
(Seela –Samadhi- Pragna)
(Conduct – concentration – Wisdom)
2.) Nobel Eightfold Path:
1. Right view - Samma Drusthi
2. Right resolve- Samma Sankappa
3. Right speech –Samma Waacha
4. Right action—Samma Kammantha
5. Right livelihood-Samma Aajeewa
6. Right effort –Samma Wayama
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7. Right mindfulness-Samma Sathi


8. Right Concentration-Samma Samahi

Buddhism = Sati & Sampajañña (clear knowing)


Ref: Mahāsatipaṭṭhāna Sutta: The Great Discourse on the Establishing of
Awareness
Buddhist text
iii)Relationship with meditation and mindfulness
Mindfulness is a "directed-focus" style of meditation, in which you're
focusing on or counting our breath, doing a walking meditation or a guided
visualization, or focusing on a flame. Any time you have a focal point, or we are
directing our mind in a particular direction, this is mindfulness. The art of bringing
our awareness into the present moment.
Neuroscience has recently investigated some of the more tangible results of
meditation in the brain, and has revealed that even for chunks of time as small as 5-10
minutes, it can change your brain in positive ways.
During meditation, your frontal lobe—the part of your brain responsible
for reasoning, planning, emotions, and conscious thought—calms down and goes
quiet. Your parietal lobe and your thalamus, each of which help you process and
organize information about the environment around you, slow down and stop giving
you as much sensory input. These effects are acute in that they only last as long as
your meditation session does.
However, studies have shown that even when brain activity goes back to
normal after a meditation session, those who practice regularly may have improved
memory and brain plasticity, or the ability to absorb and retain new information.
For these reasons and others, meditation can also result in discernibly
lower stress hormone levels in those who practice regularly even for short periods of
time.
In brief, meditation is a physical and mental practice that can change the
way your brain processes information and the way your sympathetic nervous system
responds to stimuli, decreasing your measurable stress levels and generally leading
to better long-term health, wellness, and happiness.
Being mindful is simply stopping to ask questions like: "Why am I doing
this?", "Does this make me happy?", "Could I be doing this a better, healthier way?",
"Does this feel good, physically and emotionally?"

Mindfulness easily leads into developing a meditation practice.


C.)How meditation helps to develop the society:
One human being Society
i.) Missing Mindfulness Social issues
ii) Meditation Develop the Mindfulness of human being
iii) Meditation Minimize the social issues
Meditation has an ability to respond proactively and implement change in
oneself and the society. Then Person and society are can be empowered through
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meditation .An empowered mind always success to develop Good habits. In overall
people understand the one’s responsibility as follow.
Physical well-being
Social responsibility
Economic responsibility
Mental well-being
He who has understanding and great wisdom does not think of harming
himself or another, nor of harming both alike. He rather thinks of his own welfare, of
that of others, of that of both, and of the welfare of the whole world. In that way one
shows understanding and great wisdom."
Ref: Anguttara Nikaya (Gradual Sayings) Fours, No. 186
"By protecting oneself (e.g., morally), one protects others; by protecting
others, one protects oneself."
—Ref: Samyutta Nikaya (Kindred Sayings) 47; Satipatthana Samy., No.
19
As we have noted, the significance of social action as mindfulness training
is, of course, incidental to that profound compassionate impulse which more — or
less — leads us to seek the relief of the suffering of others. Our motives may be
mixed, but to the extent that they are truly selfless they do manifest our potential for
Awakening and our relatedness to all beings.
Through our practice, both in the world and in withdrawn meditation, the
delusion of a struggling self becomes more and more transparent, and the conflicting
opposites of good and bad, pain and pleasure, wealth and poverty, oppression and
freedom are seen and understood in a Wisdom at once serene and vigilant. This
Wisdom partakes of the sensitivity of the heart as well as the clarity of thought.
In this Wisdom, in the words of R.H. Blyth, things are beautiful — but not
desirable; ugly — but not repulsive; false — but not rejected. What is inevitable, like
death, is accepted without rage; what may not be, like war, is the subject of action
skillful and the more effective because, again, it is not powered and blinded by rage
and hate. We may recognize an oppressor and resolutely act to remove the
oppression, but we do not hate him. Absence of hatred, disgust, intolerance or
righteous indignation within us is itself a part of our growth towards
enlightenment (bodhi).
Such freedom from negative emotions should not be mistaken for
indifference, passivity, compromise, loving our enemy instead of hating him, or any
other of these relativities. This Wisdom transcends the Relativities which toss us this
way and that. Instead, there is an awareness, alert and dispassionate, of an infinitely
complex reality, but always an awareness free of despair, of self-absorbing
aggression, or of blind dogma, an awareness free to act or not to act. Buddhists have
their preferences, and in the face of such social cataclysms as genocide and nuclear
war, they are strong preferences, but they are not repelled into quietism by them.
What has been said above has to be cultivated to perfection by one following the
Bodhisattva ideal. We are inspired by it, but very few of us can claim to live it. Yet we
shall never attain the ideal by turning our backs upon the world and denying the
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compassionate Buddha nature in us that reaches out to suffering humanity, however


stained by self-love those feelings may be. Only through slowly "Wearing out the
shoe of samsara" in whatever way is appropriate to us can we hope to achieve this
ideal, and not through some process of incubation.
This Great Wisdom (prajna) is come through from meditated mind and it
exposes the delusion, the folly, sometimes heroic, sometimes base, of human struggle
in the face of many kinds of suffering. This sense of folly fuses with the sense of
shared humanity in the form of compassion (karuna). Compassion is the everyday
face of Wisdom.
In individual spiritual practice though, some will incline to a Way of
Compassion and others to a Way of Wisdom, but finally the two faculties need to be
balanced, each complementing and ripening the other.
He who clings to the Void And neglects Compassion Does not reach the highest
stage. But he who practices only Compassion. Does not gain release from the toils of
existence.
Ref: https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/jones/wheel285.html-Saraha,
1954
To summarize: Buddhist or non-Buddhist, it is our common humanity, our
"Buddha nature," that moves us to compassion and to action for the relief of
suffering. These stirrings arise from our underlying relatedness to all living things,
from being brothers and sisters one to another. Buddhist spiritual practice, whether
at work or in the meditation room, ripens alike the transcendental qualities of
Compassion and Wisdom.
Social action starkly confronts the actor with the sufferings of others and
also confronts him with his own strong feelings which commonly arise from such
experience, whether they be feelings of pity, guilt, angry partisanship or whatever.
Social action is thus a powerful potential practice for the follower of the Way, a
"skillful means" particularly relevant to modern society.Finally, it is only some kind
of social action that can be an effective and relevant response to the weight
of social karma which oppresses humanity and which we all share.
“Meditation brings wisdom; lack of meditation leaves ignorance. Know well what
leads you
Forward and what holds you back, and choose the path that leads to wisdom.” -
Buddha
Ref : http://www.keepinspiring.me/buddha-quotes/#ixzz56zSuMVId

Let’s see the the leaders who are practicing meditation for their mental as well as
physical wellbeing.
Here are 9 executives in the world who practice meditation
1.Marc Benioff – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
2. Arianna Huffington – President and Editor-in-Chief, the Huffington Post
Media Group
3. Bill George – Senior Fellow, Harvard Business School
4. Padmasree Warrior – CTO and Strategy Officer, Cisco system
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5. Rick Goings – Chairman and CEO, Tupperware Brands


Corporation
6. Larry Brilliant – President, Skoll Global Threats Fund
7. Ray Dalio – Chairman and Chief Investment Officer, Bridgewater
Associates
8. Nouriel Roubini – Professor of Economics and International Business,
Leonard N. Stern School of Business, New York University
9. Rupert Murdoch – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Fox
Entertainment Group, US
Further here are the World classes some organizations which practice
meditation
1. Google
2.Face Book
3. The Chicago Fire Department (CFD)
4. Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Conclusion:
Destruction of nature, Large scale conflict / wars, Inequality (income,
discrimination) ,Poverty Religious conflicts, Government accountability and
transparency / corruption ,Food and water security, Lack of education ,Safety /
security / wellbeing ,Lack of economic opportunity and employment are main issues
in the world that people are suffering according to the reports and those issues are
basically raised from keeping unconscious and greed mind set up in the society
.Society can be but up through develop our self each other. The best self-development
or self-empowered tool is the meditation. Meditation which tool has no religion it is
owned to all humans in the world for developing a better society.

Refference
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mindfulness-missing
http://www.visuddhimagga.info/English_4Day_program_guide.html
https://puredhamma.net/key-dhamma-concepts-that-have-been-hidden/sorting-out-
some-key-pali-terms-tanha-lobha-dosa-moha-etc/lobhadosa-moha-versus-
raga-patigha-avijja/
https://www.mindful.org/what-is-mindfulness/
http://www.buddhismdictionary.org/MOHA
https://www.scribd.com/document/173089409/Purabhedasutta
https://www.scribd.com/document/54610052/AnattalakkhanaSutta
https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-27292/whats-the-difference-between-
mindfulness-meditation.html
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https://www.doyouyoga.com/whats-the-difference-between-mindfulness-and-
meditation-25553/
Ref : http://www.keepinspiring.me/buddha-quotes/#ixzz56zSuMVId
Ref: https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/jones/wheel285.html
Ref: Samyutta Nikaya (Kindred Sayings) 47; Satipatthana Samy., No. 19
Ref:Anguttara Nikaya (Gradual Sayings) Fours, No. 186
Ref: Mahāsatipaṭṭhāna Sutta: The Great Discourse on the Establishing of
Awareness
Buddhist text
Ref :https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness

Ref: AnattalakkhanaSutta, Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta


From Nyantiloka, Manual of Buddhist Terms

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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 79

Buddhist Positive Parenting in Cambodia

Mr. Chamrouen Koy


Technical Advisor with Organization for
Buddhist Social Development (BSD), Cambodia
Mr. Euren En
Program Manager with Organization for Buddhist Social Development
(BSD), Cambodia

Abstact
Cambodian Buddhist have been applied the concept of parenting for their
children based on the Buddha doctrine such "Bramha Viheara="dwelling place
of brahmas" and five precepts "Panca Sila" and almost value Buddha teaching was
applied and be fundamental for Cambodian culture in past time, today and future.
While Cambodia and Buddhism have destroyed by Cambodian civil war over 25
years(1969-1993) with tragedy and left behind the single mothers, marginalize
children, people with disabilities, lost their basic rights become emotion depression
also decreased the code of ethic(morality) and broke the policy and law(miss
conduct). However, as the developing country, there are many women and children
need the social services for emotional treatment to be healthy in living and adoption
with their current situation with welfare both emotional and physical is a part of
social component.
To respond to this problem, This strategy focus on parenting skill without
violent consistency to Buddha teaching on parenting with good manner with
physical speech and mind peacefulness, Buddha explain that “Nothing happiness,
without Peacefulness”. For family happiness in family, community, society, Buddha
touch the way how to for lay Buddhist and apply the "Bramha Viheara Dhamma",
kindness and living with morality for quality live, how mange the resources in the
family for happiness. He teaches parent to parenting and non-violence and how to
overcome the issue for becoming education system and prohibit only their physical
and speech and thinking, feeling which the cause of leading the action. The
consistency of positive parenting skill or morality of Buddhism side and side in our
country nowadays is the important core component for teaching children to become a
good next generation with healthy, strong mindfulness and good morality, good
characteristic in living with present and future happiness.

Keywords: Buddhist Positive, Parenting

Introduction
Cambodian Buddhist have been applied the concept of parenting through
Buddhist principle with their children since acknowledgement and accepted the
Buddhism in this gold land "Sovanak Pumi". It have been known as whole country
for log time in the past and today who be parenting based on the Buddha doctrine
such "Bramha Viheara="dwelling place of brahmas" five precepts "Bagn Cha Silar"
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and almost value Buddha teaching was applied and be fundamental for Cambodian
culture in past time, today and future. While the both development of Kingdom and
Buddhism have destroyed by Cambodian civil war over 25 years(1969-1993) with
tragedy and left behind the single mothers, marginalize children, people with
disabilities, lost their basic rights become emotion depression also decreased the code
of ethic(morality) and broke the policy and law(miss conduct).
After the 23 October 1993 of Paris Peace Agreement the facing issues,
Cambodian government have been capture to set-up the national strategic plan toke
into action and promoted active engagement from citizen to overcome. However, as
the developing country, there are much of women and children need the social
services for emotional treatment to be healthy in living and adoption with their
current situation with welfare both emotional and physical is a part of social
component. Resulting the survey in 2013 by ministry of women affair and UNICEF
show that more than 50% of children experiences with psychological abuse, 25%
children got physical abuse, and 5% of children have experience at least one time on
sexual abuse, about 60% of children got abuse do not less than a kind of the child
abuse form, it can be psychological or sexual abuse percentage of abuse stills high
level and fond that the person who closer with children as parent or care giver is the
abuser/offender especially in their family (Affair, 8 Sep 2017).
To respond to this problem, ministry of Women Affairs and related
ministries in partnership with international Organization, national NGOs started to
take action for created the mechanism, strategy, procedure, and currently have
endorsement the positive strategy for 2017 to 2021. This strategy focus on parenting
skill without violent consistency to Buddha teaching on parenting with good manner
with physical speech and mind peacefulness, Buddha explain that “Nothing
happiness, without Peacefulness” For family happiness in family, community,
society, Buddha touch the way how to for lay Buddhist and apply the "Bramha
Viheara Dhamma", kindness and living with morality for quality live, how mange the
resources in the family for happiness (Khmer-Bali, B.E 2536/C.E 1969.). The Buddha
teach parent to parenting and non-violence and how to overcome the issue. Law and
strategy on positive parenting is becoming to education system and prohibit only
their physical and speech but Buddhism can support and touch more about how to
control the mind, thinking, feeling which the cause of leading the action. The
consistency of positive parenting skill or morality of Buddhism side and side in our
country nowadays is the important core component for teaching children to become a
good next generation with healthy, strong mindfulness and good morality, good
characteristic in living with present and future happiness.

Meaning and Terminology


Buddhist
Buddhist is the teaching of Buddha, the trust touch by the Buddha,
Buddha's doctrine or guidance to humanity of natural reality of lives. A mention
"Buddhism" refer to Theravada Buddhism which have been practicing/following in
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 81

Asia country including Cambodia, Thailand, Loas, Purmar, Srilanka and a part of
other country in the world such Europe zone, America, Australia.
What is Buddhism make a different?
Buddhism is the scientism, full spectrum democratic, the religion of
freedom and peace leading in the world.
Buddhism is humanisms who teach the human being to be ethical or
morality, charity, loving kindness (Peaceful, equity, solidarity, knowledge, which is
the best way to inspire the human happiness).
Buddhism is the independency, ownership and self-esteem (Attahi Attano
Neato= Beside you are the refugee yourself, No anyone) and freedom of believe for
everyone.
Positive Parenting
Positive parenting is the parent approach without any form of violence
inclusion of neglect instead of setting-up the log-term goal, limitation, understanding
the thinking and feel also problem solving.
Cambodia
A nation in South East Asia, the Kingdom of Cambodia, is the democratic
rely on constitution with over 15 million of population official recognize Buddhism
as national religion represented 96% is Buddhist. A famous and empire king in
Ankor regime of The King Chayvaraman VII (Today Ankor Wat is the world
heritage).
Application with positive parenting:
On third century of Buddhist era (234 years after Buddha pass away),
Cambodia have greeting and acknowledged the Buddha teaching as whole country
officially, who Ven. Sonathera and Utaretera(Indina Buddhist monks) was the
ambassador to spread out and expand the Buddha's voice of wisdom to all humanity
in South East Asia(Sovan Pumi) under highly supported by the King Ahsoka
(Ancient Indian King who honor Buddhism) hold in Patali Putra capital city, Indian.
Buddha teaching have integrated mainstream deeply and as core component
for Khmer traditional for parenting, family taking care, social development which
appearance the principle of Bramha Vieara: goodwill(Meta) un-limitation love with
children, Compassion (Karuna) feel pity when children confront the suffering,
Empathetic joy (Mudita) Empathy with children every time ,Equanimity (Upekkha)
strengthening, supporting children and guiding children on the right way (Ven. Ku
Sopheap, BE. 2550).
A modern today 21st century, a science/technology society, Cambodian
family are being perform those teaching in daily life either integrated and
fundamental perspective for creating low, policy and procedures especially the
positive parenting strategy and toolkit 2017-2021 which contain the 4 component:
1)log-term goal, 2)warmth & limitation, 3) Understanding thinking and feeling and 4)
problem solving.
In second volume of Mankolar Suta, the Buddha have toll that after
understood of wife pregnancy, the both have set-out the future expectation of their
children. They expectations that their children to be well-known, high qualification,
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keep virtue and high quality living standard, value and respective other, high
position, a manger, leader, business person so on. As referee, when the King
Sototana (Ancent Indian King, the Buddha's father ) got inform that his wife was
pregnancy he expected that his son will be the emperor king for leading the whole
Indian states. To accomplish the goal he has dedication and set the approach with
relevant to control and supports his son accordingly. For in stand, immediately after
the Rahula was born (Sutotta's son), Sutotta(Buddha's name when layman) expected
that his son will be a deliverance from all suffering so after awaken, the Buddha
allowed the Venerable Sariputra ordain Rahula to become the monk and perform the
teaching of Buddha, he have deliverance suffering as Buddha's expectation.
This is the log-tern goal setting in Buddhist concept.
Since set-out the family plan and willing with number of children should
be have, pregnancy, sickness of pregnancy estimated 9 months and 10 day, the
mother carefully concern for the baby inside, so she must to care for eating, sleeping,
standing and sitting that hurting the baby unless she needed, desire something or in
case of the live dedication. Delivery the birth is most the difficulty and dangerous for
every mother unless natural delivery and medical delivery, or mean that exchange
the live between mother and early baby, can be dead anyone or sometime the both or
fortunately survive the both. In that case the Buddha globally announce that she have
done the most difficult and dangerous who rarely anyone el done in this would
(Tukkara Karika). Even though confronting with seriously dangerous, she have given
a birth successfully however she seem to be empty power for movement just heard
the baby voice make her a powerful and strong look like the magic power
installment. For these all dedication Buddha call "Karuna Bramha Viheara" empathy
from the parent also call warmth and limitation in the parenting strategy. These
activities of parenting call keeping warmth and limitation.
At the time of childhood for the children, parent have empathy with
children every time to concentrated and determine the children's needed such as
cloths, food, accommodation, medical care treatment without hesitation if any serious
situation or in case of selling everything because of their children. To easy
understanding children growth and development both physical and emotional,
Buddhism have classified the age of humanity into three ranking 1) The first of age 0
year to 45 years old (Childhood) 2) Middle of age 46 years to 65 years old
(Adulthood) 3) Final age 66-75 years old(Older). This traditional view and current
concept on Child Development is the same page on the way to find out their mind,
thinking, emotional and complied professional standard of parenting "Children See,
Children Do!"
Cambodian traditional view a child look like the white pager who fostering
accepted and follow what they seen from adult and other children even good or bad
action. So good partner of parent, car giver and adult very curial and sensitively for
promoting the positive parenting "Children Seen, Children do". The parent always
thoughtfulness, support and educate the children on right way to be kind, generosity,
honest... For ensuring loving children on the right way and achieving the log-term
goal, the Buddha taught the lay Buddhist how to education with morality, coaching,
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 83

mentoring with equality, equity and fairly with their development, must not be
judgment based on " Four Akkati Dhamma" or "Four root cause of fail judgment"
because of love, hat, fear, and ignorance. The Buddha teach the parent to keep
peaceful of acts, speech and mind mean that if children misconduct must be consider
and find out the root cause and discuss with them face to face, speak with them
honor, sweetly, meaningful, and compassion with children. They must avoided
beating, hitting, shoving, and holding a child around, burning, drowning or
suffocating a child, blame, punishment. If children facing the issues parent should be
talk with them appropriate manner, make the safety, friendly, positively for problem
solving with calm and explain the reasonable adoption to natural living in this world
with "Loka-Dhamma= Affairs or phenomena of the world ". The standard list gives
eight: wealth, loss of wealth, status, loss of status, praise, criticism, pleasure, and
pain. Adoption, resilience with above Loka-Dhamma enable them to meet the
happiness, deliverance the suffering straight to point of set goal successfully. Living
with issues and overcome through Loka-Dhamma mean to accept the reality of
impermanence: sometime meet happiness and suffering, sometime met with love,
losing the property and resources, sometime famous, respected, praise, everything
will be change as the natural law. Risk assumption and resilience is the best way for
humanity. The mention the way of parenting with focusing on the problem solving
which have been stated on the positive parenting strategy with Khmer slogan on
parenting "Parenting to live not just for growth". Measuring the family
harmonization with equity, equality and gender based referent to Singkealaka Sutta,
the Buddha have tough the dividing role and responsible for family member
individually/personally inclusion parent and children is the core part of it. These
mention call focus on the problem solving in the strategy (Cambodia_SSC, 2015).
More importantly of physical, the parent should be demonstrate on mind
development on their compassion for children to
1) 1)Prevent the children from evil/bad deed: guide the children to
aware of impact of evils avoiding
2) lying, cheating, drug using, alcohol drinking, gambling, gangster,
cruel, and violation
3) Persuade the children to do good: make children closely in family,
generosity, honestly, social contribution and keep code of conduct
4) Make a chance for children for enrolling the school to learn the art for
earning money, or suitable of today labor market and encourage
them to learn the Buddhism on how to live calm, happiness for today
and future 4) Give them a married to a suitable wife to align with
tradition and married law in respect country
5) 5)At a proper time they would hand over to them their inheritance
for make them possible job or business to earn the money for family
economic.
On that way, children are the duty to parent and family in positive ways as
following:
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1) Being supported, I shall support them,


2) I should do their duty,
3) I shall keep the family lineage,
4) I shall act in such a way as to be worthy of my inheritance,
5) furthermore, I shall offer alms in honor of my departed relative.
As mentioned, the parent is a dedicator for whole live to parenting the
children in many part of need on physical, mind to support children on emotional,
understanding thinking and keep children warm calm and happiness. Based on the
description, in Monkula Sutta, the Buddha claim that parent are "Bramha" mean
make calm place and happiness of living for children, "Bobateva" mean the first
person of carefully taking care for children, "Bobachariya" the first teacher of teaching
everything for children.

Buddhist Peace Concept and Positive Parenting Principle


To reach out the goal of positive parenting, the implementation approach
based on the five principle as following:
The first principle of strategy) Parent without violation: deny all forms of
violent against children inclusion of physical, emotional, sexual, and neglect. Non-
violence is the core principle of Buddhism have known globally among humanity,
Albert Einstein on Modern explorer today(YouTube) and the former Secretary
General of United Nation in headquarter publicly recognize the Buddhism is the
leading peace in the world for today and tomorrow with humanity "Visaka Puchea"
is reality of peace for the world. The eighty hundred and four thousand of the
Buddha teaching in Tripitaka (a collection of scriptures, originally
recorded from traditions in the 1st century b.c.) is the core principle for humanity
harmonization "Nati Santi Baram Sokam" Non any happiness than peace at all.
Buddha teach the lay Buddhist to understanding the root cause of violence and must
prevented and managed the "Tosa" anger to children with beating, hitting, shoving,
and holding a child around, burning, drowning or suffocating a child, blame,
punishment, "Lopa" Desire non-limitation or highest expectation on children with
consider for thinking, emotional, careless with children capability, possibility only
focus their ambition on highest result to attain qualification, employment, "Moha"
unseasonal for manner or finding the reality root cause of issue then violated on their
children (Positive parenting training handout of ICS_SP , 2017).
The Buddha have globally reject all form of violence on human being
including children, wife, husband, relatives instead, he recommended to be good
deed "Kaya Socharita" to take care children with feeding, affording earning money
for family, good word "Vachira Socharita" to sweety, friendly, open mind with
children, good thought "Mano Sochirita" empathy, warmed, kind for children.
1) Additionally he teach us to educated the children keeping humanity
morality
or five precept: 1)To refrain from killing living creatures, hurting the physical,
damage to other human or animal but to offering them the pleasure"Meta" loving
kindness and wish them happiness security and safety every time"Sape Satta Avera
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 85

Hotu" as well as comparing your feeling first of doing something whether suitable
done or not "Attanam Ubamam Kattva=Be reflected your self-first of doing". More
importantly in daily living must perform the related law on civil code, criminal code,
child protection policy, law on prevention violence against women and victim.
2) To refrain from taken what not given: prevention children all illegal
acts of
non-given anything unless a little, a few or many/ much instead of explanation
offering "Tean" charity, kind, contribution, donation with all people also obey the law
of anti-corruption law, bribery law and finance policy in place.
3) To refrain from wrong misconduct in sexual pleasures: learn to keep
in mind
to virtue the people fairly with goodwill, sympathy, sympathetic, equanimity or
regarding as mother, daughter, cousin... Within the country must respect to the law
on prevention human trafficking, and child protection policy as well.
4) To refrain from false speech: be honor and keep reality of speech,
and fair to
5) all wellbeing's also must perform the related article of cheat on civil
code and criminal code.
6) To refrain from distilled and fermented intoxicants which are the
occasion for
carelessness: currently drug and alcohol have serous damage the human virtue not
just physical, emotional and speech. It the root cause to make human to act
inappropriate manner to lose of wealthy, property, making ague and violation,
impact the health to shorter to died, carelessness of confidentiality of personality,
unable to control the thinking and emotion. As detail previously, these teaching of
Buddha are value of positive parent to make more complementary to reach the gaol
of positive parenting strategy in Cambodia.
The second principle of strategy stated that): Focusing on problem solving
mean to listen the children talk respectively for finding the best way of solution
comply with peace, positive with volunteer agree from the children. Buddhism is the
resolution based through finding the cause and impact in all stages of solution
process, he teach parent, care giver to consider first before decision to ensuring the
fairly: "Ye Tama Heto Pava Ye Sam Hetong Tattakato" Whatever Dhamma talk,
Buddha talking with cause and impact. To become smart and expertize in problem
solving, the Buddha showing to apply the eight of wisdom(Saborisa Dhamma) for
positive way with children:
1) Understanding root cause and impact "Dhamagnuta=Clear with
nature of problem": parent should be a skill full of good listener, discuss with the
compassion, confidentiality to ensuring the feeling comfortable or easy to talk to
identify what is reality of the cause and avoiding the pressure and balm that hurting
the feeling. It important step to know the cause and step to set the agree plan to
overcome.
2) Understanding the benefit for children(Athagnuta) should analysis
what haveto be done or not, what will be impact positive and negative avoided make
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children feel fear, sad, sorrow shy but keep them feeling of someone are standing to
help with hope, confident and motivation.
3) Knowing yourself "Attaguta" to reflection yourself on knowledge,
skill,willingness, confident regarding to positive parenting. Also concentrate on
thinking and develop the way to manage the reactive of feeling on the children and
further focus the value reflection to preventing the put the pressure on their
perspective and value.
4) Understanding limitation or scope of expectation "Mattagnuta"
controlling and identified the needed of type of food, cloth, resources, expenditure for
running the family operation and run business for harmonization, growth, happiness
and sustainable for family. To understanding the basic right of children rely on
UNCRC and child development, must ratified what the task should hand over for
implementing which do not affect to their development, growth, schooling and
damage the health in form high risky work of child labor.
5) Understanding the suitable circumstance "Kalagnuta" finding the
suitable to make a discussion such not be blame among of their friend inside, and
other related person that shape them the reputation, discrimination from anybody
should find the security place for talking with warmth, confident, keep all
information secret in order inspiring their potential to adoption, resilience and
responding peacefully.
6) Understanding the characteristic and attitude of all family
membership "Barisagnuta" capability to capture the nature of thinking, emotion, need
and desire to set the plan to respond and explain them learn to live together of
diversity in happiness, non-discrimination, and gender equity.
7) Understanding the characteristic and attitude of individually
"Bokalagnuta"identified the personality and privacy on the thinking, feeling, needed,
willingness, cloth, food, free time activities, life goal, career goal making easy for
parent them accordingly.
The principle 3 of strategy) respective and value in equity or equal
treatment for all human with non-discrimination and judgment of race, religion,
nation and whatever and principle 4) Focus on the child growth and development
are included into "Saborisa Dhamma" as well. The principle 5 of strategy) Based on
the UNCRC (United Nation Convention on the Rights of the Child) which Cambodia
have ratified on 15 October 1992. The Buddhist parenting rely on the reality of nature
for existent "Dhamma" Buddha not encourage him but to follow the trust that he
found of the nature of globally. Buddha toll that "Yo Dhamma Basati, So mam
Basati=who see my teaching-see me" mean follow the principle that he tough.
The Buddhist parenting principle as following areas:
1) Understanding the code of parenting "Vinaiy Bagnat&Buddha
Nughati" meanfollow the "Four Akkati Dhamma" guide them on the right way
without pre-judgment, understanding the role and responsible among family and
five precept or 5 morality for humanity.
2) Skill and professionalism in parenting: parent must understanding
the "Four Bramha
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The Fifth National and the Third International Conferences 2018 87

Vihear", the 7 art or skillful of parenting "7 Saborisa Dhamma" and the four keys to
success parenting "Ithi Pata Dhamma".
3) Understanding the natural of live concentration on cause and impact
to make the adoption, resilience and deliverance from suffering "Appi Dhamma"
inclusion of the eight of challenges in every life and how to overcome "Eight Loka
Dhamm", the reality of every live must be confront and how to living with "8
Appinaha Bachavekana" and key message for reminding the every human every day
"Satti Pathana".

Conclusion
Buddhist parenting base on the natural of live or teaching of the Buddha
whom Cambodian Buddhist are being perform is the peacefully of thinking, acts,
speech. These are core fundamental complementary to the Positive Strategic Plan
2017-2021 under coordination of Ministry of Women Affairs of Cambodia,
successfully implemented to promote the non-violence parenting for children also
preventable of unneeded of separation children from the family and capability to
develop children with equality and equity.
The core principle of Buddhism is too consistency with positive parenting
strategy of Ministry of Women Affairs, implementing body and relevant ministry
with the strong commitment take into reality action for 2017-2021 and extension. As
the same page of understanding and approach in parenting, is the key measuring
indicator of behavore change and add value the existing good concept and
experiences for all parent, car giver, duty bearer, right holder also social environment
with safety sustainable adding value for child growth and development across
Cambodia to be healthy, value, and good productive as the treasure of the Kingdom.

Reference

Phnom Penh(2017 Positive parenting training handout of ICS_SP . Phnom


Penh(2017).: Cambodia .
Cambodia_SSC, S. S. (2015). Positive parenting training handout . Phnom Penh:
Cambodia_SSC Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Khmer-Bali, B. K. (B.E 2536/C.E 1969.). Monkula Sutta Tipani" Buddhist transcript .
Mahāthera, A. B. (1997). Concise Pali-English Dictionary. Reprint: Delh: First Edition:
Colombo.
Ven. Ku Sopheap, C. m. (BE. 2550). Way of life in Khmer . Phnom Penh: written by
Khmer public on BE. 2550.
Wehmeier, S. O. (2001). Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary. New York: Oxford
University Press.
Affair, M. o. (8 Sep 2017). Positive parenting strategy 2017-2021 . Phnom Penh: by
Ministry of Women Affairs, Cambodia, .
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Interdependent Origination of Volunteerism and Sustainable


Social Development

Tulku Tashi Topgyal


Shechen Orgyen Chodzong Bhutan
Email: ttopgyal8855@gmail.com
Abstract
The purpose of this paper is to explain the linkage of concepts
interdependent origination with Sustainable Social Development. The exposure to
this paper is intended to show how the application of Buddhism in everyday life.
Content analysis is used in this article. In conclusion, if anyone says that the word
‘independent’ exists, then we have to be aware that it exists in relation to the word
‘dependent’.

Keyword: Interdependent Origination, Sustainable Development, Social


Development

Introduction
The Tibetan word tendrel means interconnection, interrelation,
interdependence or interdependent factors. Everything, all our experiences, are
tendrel, which means that an event that exists because of relationship between
interrelated factors. To understand what tendrel or dependent arising is, let’s take an
example. All electronics and mechanical things are dependent on us humans.
Let’s explain this, to build an automobile we need automotive engineers.
Therefore, even Mercedes-AMG A 45 or Volkswagen 2017 CC is dependent on a
human for it to be called an automobile. Additionally, automotive engineers will be
useless if the raw materials to build the car are not available. So it is important to
have materials like rubbers, metals and paints in addition to an intelligent and
talented automotive engineer to build the car. It does not end there, for the car to be
fully functional it would need fuel and a driver. If either of these is absent, then
Mercedes-AMG A 45 or Volkswagen 2017 CC will cease to exist.
All elements are necessary for the car to be perceived drivable, and they are
necessary not in succession but simultaneously. The car is an event whose existence
depends on the interaction of those elements; that is tendrel.
There is interdependence of all things and a mutual interaction between
causes and effects. This existence of anything ‘now’ or an event results from earlier
factors which are probably its original cause. Nothing can exist on its own or
independently. Human beings do not exist in isolation but they exist in relation to
society and nature and vice versa. Without society and nature, human beings would
not have survived. Therefore, it is up to human beings to create a habitable society.
Habitable society can be achieved when there is a Sustainable Social
Development happening in the communities. It is crucial to clearly understand the
interconnected relationship.
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Social Development
As defined by UN, Social Development is about improving the well-being
of every individual in society so they can reach their full potential. It can be achieved
only when each and every citizen on this planet is happy and self-sufficient (The
World Bank, 2017). It is not only about the happiness and self-sufficiency of the
present generation but also for all the future generations. It is about using the limited
natural resources unselfishly.
Additionally, providing mutual aid and self-help, service delivery and
other forms of assistance for economic and social development. Therefore, social
development means developing people. It requires removal of obstacles that refrain
citizens from achieving their dreams and aspirations with confidence and dignity. It
is about refusing to accept that who live in poverty will always be poor.
Let’s look at another example. As stated earlier every event is
interdependent, for a country to be labeled as ‘poor country’ or ‘rich country’ they are
dependent on one another. If there is no poor then who do we refer to as rich,
similarly if there is no rich then what do we refer to as poor. All these phenomena
such as rich and poor are dependent on one another. Although, there are times when
some rich people or country might feel that they do not need to depend on the poor
or are independent of the poor. But they should realize that they are indirectly
dependent on the poor. They have been identified as rich because of the existence of
poor.

Sustainable Development
The UN has recently adopted 2030 agenda for Sustainable development
which is based on a commitment to “leave no-one behind”. Furthermore, World Bank
also emphasized that Social Development should focus on the need to “put people
first” in development processes (Economic and Social Inclusion Corporation, 2009;
Programme, 2015). It is also about helping people so that they can move forward on
their path to self-sufficiency. Sustainable social development promotes social
inclusion of the poor and vulnerable by empowering people.
Therefore, volunteerism is one significant way to help societies in need in
terms of poverty reduction, sustainable development and social integration
particularly overcoming social exclusion and discrimination. According to “State of
the World’s volunteerism report 2015” defines volunteerism as “activities undertaken
of free will, for the general public good and where monetary reward is not the
principal motivating factor” (Programme, 2015). Additionally, in Buddhist context
volunteerism, the act of giving, sharing and generosity are results of the positive
feeling in the mind to help people or do a good thing. This positive feeling in the
mind comes into existence because of the Buddhist core values such as compassion to
achieve well-being through wisdom.
Sustainable Social Development is a development event that is dependent
on several dimensions such as Equity, Diversity, Interconnected/Social cohesions,
Quality of life, Democracy and Governance, and Maturity. If any of these dimensions
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disappear or are not fulfilled, then it will not be qualified as sustainable social
development.
From the above definitions of volunteerism, it can be observed that
volunteerism and sustainable social development are interdependent (Programme,
2015). If sustainable social development is seen as independently existing event, then
volunteerism would have never originated. Contrarily, volunteerism would not have
come into existence in the absence of sustainable social development. All these
phenomena arise dependent upon a number of causal factors.

Interdependent Origination (Pratityasamutpada)


Similarly, the past, present and future moments are dependent on each
other like the conditions of the present existence are the results of the past, existence
of future depends on the present actions and the past gives rise to present and the
future (Rinpoche, 1997). These past, present and future moments cannot exist
independently of one another. In the Dependent Origination Sutra Buddha states:
If there is this, that ensues;
Because this came into being, that came into being.
It is thus: Due to ignorance volition arises…
In other words, in order for a particular event or experience to take place,
there must be a cause, and the cause itself must be existent. That cause will also be an
effect of a preceding cause, because if it is not itself a product, then it will lack the
potential or capacity to produce any results (The Dalai Lama, 2014).
All Buddhist studies mention the twelve links of dependent origination.
Interdependent origination (pratityasamutpada) is the law of causality, which the
Buddha discovered at his awakening. Additionally, it has been told that all samsaric
phenomena result from a multiplicity of interactions which belong to these twelve
links of dependent origination. Twelve links that make up dependent origination are
as follows (Rigpa Shedra, 2017):
1. Ignorance / Avijja (Avidya). Fundamental ignorance of the truths and
the delusion of mistakenly perceiving the skandhas as a self.
2. Mental formations / Sankhara (Samskara). As long as there is
ignorance there is the formation of karma: positive, negative and neutral. This
forms the rebirths in the various realms
3. Consciousness / Vinnana (Vijnana). Formations cause the
consciousness of the next existence. The consciousness which propels one
towards the next existence is called the impelling consciousness. And the
consciousness that is led to that particular state, once the conditions have come
together, is known as the consciousness of the impelled result. These two aspects
of consciousness are counted as a single link since together they establish the link
between two lives.
4. Name and form / Nama-Rupa the five skandhas. By the power of
consciousness one is linked to a womb, and there the body develops: the form
and the four ‘name’ skandhas of sensation, perception, formation and
consciousness.
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5. Source of perception (six senses media) / Six Ayatanas


(Shadayatana). The six inner ayatanas of the sense faculties then arise.
6. Contact Phassa / (Sparsha). The coming together of objects, sense
faculty and consciousness is contact.
7. Feeling (sensation) / Vedana. From contact arises sensation:
pleasurable, painful and neutral.
8. Craving Tanha / (Trishna). There then develops a desire not to be
separated from pleasurable sensations and to be free from painful sensations.
9. Grasping / Upadana. As craving increases, it develops into grasping,
i.e. actively striving never to be separated from what is pleasurable and to avoid
what is painful.
10.Existence (becoming) / Bhava (Bjava). Through this grasping one
acts with body, speech and mind, and creates the karma that determines one’s next
existence.
11.Birth / Jati Through the power of this becoming, one is reborn in a
particular birthplace whenever the necessary conditions are assembled.
12.Aging and death / Jara-marana (Jaramaranam). Following rebirth
there is a continual process of aging as the aggregates change and develop; and
eventually there is death when the aggregates finally cease.
These twelve links of interdependent origination give rise to each other
mutually and they co-exist. The very reason that “aging and death” is read together,
it’s because one is not sure whether the death or aging will come first. For example,
deaths even happen to babies who are just born. One does not have to grow old for
death to occur. There is not a single existing phenomenon that exists independently.
According to this law, nothing has independent, permanent, or absolute
existence. Everything is part of a limitless web of interconnections and undergoes a
continual process of transformation. Transcending both existence and nonexistence, it
is self-liberated into emptiness, the vast openness of space beyond conceptual
thought.

Conclusion
Therefore, from this point of view, volunteerism spirit for sustainable social
development is also a samsaric phenomenon and it has resulted from the interactions
of the twelve links of dependent origination as stated above. In conclusion, if anyone
says that the word ‘independent’ exists, then we have to be aware that it exists in
relation to the word ‘dependent’. What we are doing here is penetrating into the truth
of the Law of Dependent Origination, and freeing our minds from it. For a practicing
Buddhist the final spiritual objective is nirvana, the state of the mind that has been
cleansed of all its distressed and deluded states (The Dalai Lama, 2014).
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References
Economic and Social Inclusion Corporation. (2009). What is social development? -
Economic and Social Inclusion Corporation. Retrieved February 28, 2018,
from http://www2.gnb.ca/content/gnb/en/departments/esic/overview/
content/what_is_ social_development.html
Programme, U. N. D. (2015). State of the World’s Volunteerism Report Transforming
Governance. Retrieved from https://www.unv.org/sites/default/files/2015
State of the World%27s Volunteerism Report - Transforming
Governance.pdf
Rigpa Shedra. (2017). Twelve Links of Dependent Origination - Rigpa Wiki. Retrieved
February 28, 2018, from http://www.rigpawiki.org/ index.php?title=
Twelve_Links_of_Dependent_Origination
Rinpoche, K. (1997). The Middle Way of the Buddha. MassachusettS: Wisdom
Publications. Retrieved from http://www.buddhamind. info/leftside/arty/
his-life/middle.htm
The Dalai Lama. (2014). The Dalai Lama on Dependent Origination. Retrieved
February 28, 2018, from http://www.wisdompubs.org/blog/201410/dalai-
lama-dependent-origination
The World Bank. (2017). Social Development Overview. Retrieved February 28, 2018,
from http://www.worldbank.org/en/topic/socialdevelopment/overview
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The Use of Sublime States of Mind Teaching


in Organizational Development

Dr. Panisata Tarkam


Leader of German, Spanish, English, European Union, and Australian-continent
translators for law
Swat HataPakdee
Lecturer of Public Administration, Mcu khonkaen Campus
Thanyarat Phuchungchai
Lecturer, Faculty of Nursing Chaiyaphum Rajabhat University

Abstract
This study aims for understanding human working system and its key
elements and development of organization to reach effectiveness. Organization
development is human life development, focusing on body and mind, and all senses.
As we practice mindfulness, the mind will learn to let go of troubles and sufferings.
At the same time, not practicing mindfulness leads to ego and sufferings.
Working in an organization means to spending time and energy with the
others, therefore, it's important to apply morality of the sublime states of mind and
development of mind to the certain way that suits every nation and religion. This
leads to success and happiness in organization, according to the quality of
development and people of the organization and nation.

Keywords: sublime states of mind, organizational development

Introduction
According to Buddhism, living life in the proper way need a practice called
'virtue'. That means, as long as our lives are not completed and still have
incompletion and sufferings, we must keep going and learning. These days,
education focuses on academic teaching, which includes the highly qualified ones
and also the opposite. If we adapt Buddhism teaching into education, to develop
people' minds, organizational development will become qualified in terms of people'
mind quality that will be a great example to the community to follow.
Nowadays, people' lives is shifting rapidly. Material has become the
important thing, leading them to want to have more and want to be more. This is the
imbalance in living life according to Buddhism teaching, which believes in
abundance and sustainability. Once people can't control neither the need to have
materials nor their emotions, as the result of lack of practicing mindfulness, there will
be sufferings and pressure. People will express emotions over reasons. However, if
people practice their minds and learn to accept and let go of needs, organization will
be filled with quality people and quality work.
Regarding these key points and the above situation, we think that quality
organizational development is the one that include suitable Buddhism teaching 'Four
Sublime States of Mind', as they are the heart of working together in an organization.
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People who apply this aspect to their lives will achieve any kind of achievement they
want effectively, and also with attention to details, kindness, and good quality of
mind. Organization itself will become effective and successful.

Knowing Human Nature to Support Development of Organization's Potential of


Personnel
Working in an organization is a big part of life. We need to learn and
understand the key elements of the organization, as well as of life. Human life living
consists of body and mind. Body works as a connection from the heart to the outside
world through parts like eyes, ears, nose and tongue, that assist acknowledgement.
For the mind, body is also the important tool to express to the world.
Generally, body and mind work together naturally and we cannot miss
either of them. Body works as mentioned above, therefore body itself is not enough
for the complete sensing. Human is completed once there is mind, which is a kind of
dharma to sense itself and other things in the world, to know what we are thinking.
The mind is the key element of life, not the brain, but behind the brain function, as
well as behind the body sensing function (consisting of eyes, ears, and so on). Body
and brain are substantial that exist. In Buddhism teaching, body itself cannot sense,
without the mind. Passed-away bodies have these 5 senses, but without the mind, the
brain cannot work, as there is no mind to control the substantial. (See detail, Phra
Mahbunchit Sudprong(Bunchit Yanasawaro 1993 : P.T.9),
Body connects eyes, ears, nose, tongue and body itself to assist sensing of
human's acknowledgement, as is also an important tool to express actions to the
outer world. Human is completed once they have mind as explained above.
Therefore, human life has to have both body and mind to communicate with the
outside.
Body's movements, as we call actions, are the movements to interact with
the outer world, using the body senses to express. Behind the scene, there is the
system of mind that works with actions. All actions are from intention as well as
motivation that indicate intention, which can be both good and bad intention. For
example, love, anger, curiosity, enhance, respect, envy, to name a few, as well as
happiness or sadness. These indicate and motivate motions, for instance, we want to
pursue happiness or avoid suffering, so we commit the exact actions. Thus, all
communication and action are not from nowhere, but from the factors of motivation
as the background, which is the process of mind. (See detail, Phra Phrom
Kunakorn(P. O. Payutto),
If human has been trained with mindfulness regularly, they would be
mindful enough to understand and deal with the outer factors from the body sensing
parts like eyes, ears, nose, and tongue. To know and understand is not to have ego of
knowing, but to let go and not holding on to emotions that show up, which can lead
to endless problem (suffering). (See details, Phra Mahbunchit Sudprong(Bunchit
Yanasawaro P.T.9),
The most important key elements of human are body and mind. Body
connects eyes, ears, nose, tongue and body itself to assist sensing of human's
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acknowledgement, as is also an important tool to express actions to the outer world.


Human is completed once they have mind. The mind can acknowledge itself and
others. Therefore, human life has to have both body and mind to communicate with
the outside. To develop human to be effective, according to Buddhism teaching, is to
improve both body and mind all together. As the body is healthy, mind must also be
trained with dharma as practiced in the Buddhist Scriptures to be able to exercise the
mind, to know the emotions, to be a happy person in living life, and to be the
valuable person for the organization and the society.

Factors and Elements in the Organization


Organization management is human management. To let the personnel in
the organization know the way of organizational management is to ensure the
standard and unity. This will lead to achievement and quality of personnel' lives and
happiness within the organization. There are factors and elements of management
within the organization that would affect the work. We need to balance those factors
and elements to create the ideal working environment for effectiveness and
fulfillment, as analyzed and explained as followed:
1. Good working environment
Working environment is one of the factors that affects happiness in the
work place, as it affects the working behavior, for instance, cleanliness, tidiness,
safety, hygiene, sufficient light and equipment that is convenient to use, working
hours per day that is suitable and flexible, as well as the environment of tranquility
and rest, exercising facilities, or cozy atmosphere that will help workers to reach their
fullest potential and fulfillment in their work life.
2. Good leader
Being a leader is an important characteristic of manager. It consists of
knowledge and skill of managing people, as well as being a great role model for them
to follow in order to achieve the goal. It is an important aspect that affects worker’s
happiness at work place, as leader is the one who has the main role to lead and
indicate the way of the organization. Without a good leader, it is very difficult to
achieve goals of the organization.
3. Suitable work features
Work feature is the design of work that focuses on work features of the
workers which will lead to motivation and result. It is another factor that is related
directly to work features. This affects workers satisfaction of their work and is
important to work fulfillment. When workers can learn and do various kinds of work
(not always the same), have freedom and opportunity to express their thoughts, can
control their own work process, know the process and the result, and get feedback
from leader and coworkers, they will feel like a part of the achievement. Moreover,
they will be ready to work their best for the tasks, because they can see how
important their work is, to the success of the organization.
4. Good relationship among personnel in the organization
Good relationship among personnel in the organization is the bonding
between workers who communicate and work with each other, interacting to achieve
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the same target by positive communication through conversation, body language,


facial expression, and mind that aim for good relationship, love, harmony,
generosity. When people in the organization have good quality of life, it affects the
good foundation of the organization. Workers work with love, harmony, team
working for development of the organization to become stable, effective and
successful.
5. Suitable Compensation
Compensation is what the organization pays to their workers in the form of
payment and other benefits to show appreciation of workers' dedication at work,
responsibility, motivation. Therefore, workers will feel appreciated and work
effectively to their full potential.
6. Knowledge improvement
Studying and gaining knowledge at all time, from various knowledge
sources lead to being professional and growth in career. If workers take their effort to
keep on learning and improving their knowledge and skill, organization will be
benefit with qualified personnel.
Learning endlessly also leads to positive attitude towards life and society.
It helps to balance life and working in an organization to be more flexible and not
with too much pressure. When workers are healthy both physically and mentally,
they can perform well at work and create good relationship, which is the key part of
peace at work. Good relationship between personnel creates good working
atmosphere. Thus, when workers think about their workplace, they feel good and
look forward to show up and cooperate with the team they can trust to talk to, and
with the leader who is understanding. This gives the feeling like they are working
and bonding with their own family members.

Adapting 'Sublime States of Mind' Teaching in Organizational Management


Organization is a work place. There are many people from different places
involved. The difference, of their education, state of mind, and life experience, might
create troubles in the organization. To solve this, we should apply the sublime state
of mind teaching into the working environment. The reason is because this teaching
is suitable with all nations and religions. It brings peace to the world. Imagine that
someone is happy to assist to ensure that our work is done as its best; no one would
turn down this help. If we all have goodwill towards each other, the world would be
a more peaceful place, regardless of nations and religions. Therefore, if we learn to
help people in need, they would accept the help, as well as, if we assist the
organization to keep it stable and successful. This is how people should treat each
other.
For the sublime states of mind (Phrom Wihan), 'Phrom' means sublime,
great, and heavenly. 'Wihan' means actions. Together 'Phrom Wihan' means doing
good to other people, or practicing goodwill towards others, for instance (Phra
Sophon Maha Thera (Maha Srisayador 2555 : 7)
1. Mercy is the state to have towards our friends. It means the true
goodwill, as we have for our beloved friends. Therefore, merciful people are friendly
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to all, without anger, or rival. Another meaning of mercy is the state of doing good to
each other without looking to get something in return, whether the people they're
doing good for will know it or not.
2. Kindness and pity are the wish that people in suffering will recover from
that suffer, without any other means. This is very straightforward
3. Sympathetic joy is the joy of seeing others' happiness and success. Some
people feel jealous of other people. Jealousy is when people don't want to see other
people being happy, successful, and pretty, having good education, position in their
career, or reputation. Sympathetic joy is the opposite of this. It is to feel happy for the
others for all the reasons above. Sympathetic joy is the dharma of having good and
pure mind.
4. Detachment is the acknowledgement of matters with the centered mind,
without emotions like love or hate.
The sublime states of mind teaches us to practice and control our mind in
these days society with love and goodwill to all, help people and other creatures in
need, to recover from sufferings. It also teaches us to be happy with others' happiness
and to detach.
When organization applies the teaching to manage within the organization,
troubles will be lessened, happiness will be increased. Happiness acts like water that
nourish people' behavior to become more positive and improve working atmosphere.

Conclusion
The main task of organizing the organization is organizing human life
(personnel) who spend time together. Bonding the good relationship between each
part so that they can work together as a team will lead the organization to its target.
Personnel are like the cogs that drive the organization. There are 2 key parts of the
organization which are personnel and work. To organize the personnel to be
effective and efficient is very important because it would lead to good work.
Personnel will help to reach the goal and education organization is extremely
important as the base of the nations' achievement.
Living human life consists of mind and body. Body connects eyes, ears,
nose, tongue and body itself to assist sensing of human's acknowledgement, as is also
an important tool to express actions to the outer world. Human is completed once
they have mind. Mind is a kind of dharma state that can sense the outer and itself.
Human need only body and mind to communicate with the outside world. It's
human nature that we sense image, taste, scent, noise and thoughts to the sensing
organs. If human's mind is continuously trained, they will have consciousness and
intelligence to know these senses, not for their ego, but to let go of any emotions
created by senses that would lead to endless sufferings.
Sublime states of mind teaching is suitable with all nations and religions. It
brings peace to the world. In the organization, the teaching will teach people to do
and wish well to other people, to feel and help people in need, to be happy with
others' happiness and to be detached and centered. Organizational personnel with
the sublime states of mind are completed and work with happiness, the work place
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will become a happy place and that brings motivation and effective work
atmosphere. The organization will be ready for the change to the better and stable
growth. Once the educational organization is ready, that means the nations'
personnel organization will also be with quality.

References
Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya.Thai Buddhist scriptures Mahachulalong
kornrajavidyalayaUniversity.
Bangkok: Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya Press, 2539.
Mahamakut Buddhist College.The English version of the Royal College of
Corrections, 91 volumes.
Bangkok: Mahamakut Buddhist College, 2525. Phra Phrom Kunakorn(P.
O. Payutto), Happiness is Here, Where do You Look For? Bangkok : Off-
Set Creation Ltd., Page 260-264.
Phra Mahbunchit Sudprong(Bunchit Yanasawaro P.T.9), “Study and Analysis of
Qualities of the Saints in Theravada Buddhism”, Thesis Master of Arts,
(Comparative Religion Graduate Studies, Mahidol University, 1993), Page
43. 47
Phra Sophon Maha Thera (Maha Srisayador), Sublime States of Mind, 1st
Edition, (Bangkok: Prayoon Sarnn Thai Printing Co., Ltd., 2555), page 7.
Phra Sophon Maha Thera (Maha Srisayador), Sublime States of Mind, 1st Edition,
(Bangkok: Prayoon Sarnn Thai Printing Co., Ltd., 2555), page 7.
See detail, Phra Mahbunchit Sudprong(Bunchit Yanasawaro P.T.9), “Study and
Analysis of Qualities of the Saints in Theravada Buddhism”, Thesis Master
of Arts, (Comparative Religion Graduate Studies, Mahidol University,
1993), Page 43. 47
See detail, Phra Phrom Kunakorn(P. O. Payutto), Happiness is Here, Where do You
Look For? (Bangkok : Off-Set Creation Ltd., Page 260-264.
See details, Phra Mahbunchit Sudprong(Bunchit Yanasawaro P.T.9), “Study and
Analysis of Qualities of the Saints in Theravada Buddhism”, Thesis Master
of Arts, (Comparative Religion Graduate Studies, Mahidol University,
1993), Page 43. 47