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Voice of Intellectual Man- An International Journal
Year : 2019, Volume : 9, Issue : 2
First page : ( 23) Last page : ( 40)
Print ISSN : 2231-6914. Online ISSN : 2319-4308.
Article DOI : 10.5958/2319-4308.2019.00016.1

Egalitarian & Humanitarian is Social Ideal: Anthropological Dimension of Buddhism

Hong Huynh Thi Kim1, Kurane Anjali2

1Ph. D. Student, Department of Anthropology, Savitribai Phule Pune Universtity, Pune-411007

2Professor, Department of Anthropology, Savitribai Phule Pune Universtity, Pune-411007

Online published on 15 January, 2020.


Buddhism and Anthropology share an interesting similarity, both focuses on human being. While Anthropology focuses on human behaviour and human psychology Buddhism has both the inner and outer welfare of human being as its main focus. Although in Buddhism human being is the main focus, it has not only the human being, but also all beings including birds, beasts, reptiles and all types of living beings and their welfare as its focus. However, there is no doubt that among all beings, particularly human beings receive a specific attention in Buddhism. The teachings of Buddha and Buddhism are not only philosophy but also teachings in human psychology which has relevance in social and individual life even today.

The theoretical and practical dimensions of Buddhism are related to many areas of human existence. Buddhism is not a religion in its narrow sense of involving only rites and rituals. Buddhism is a complete way of life covering all stages of human life including both men and women, from their early childhood to the advanced stage of life. It has a comprehensive social philosophy encompassing economic and political aspects. The present article focuses on the social life and social ideals professed in Buddhism, specifically a) the teachings of the Buddha that contribute to words a desirable social order, b) the ideals professed by Buddha in terms of equality among human beings in social and political aspects of society and c) egalitarian ideas and practices.

At the end, it needs to be highlighted that the egalitarian social ideals were thought of by Buddha almost 2600 years ago. The ideals were professed against the then existing social and political life. The teachings thus shed light on and help to understand the society, social order and social life at the time of Buddha. The analysis of primary data and results show that people do know the teachings think that they are of relevance even today.



Buddhism, Humanitarian, Social Ideal, Egalitarian.


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