domingo, 24 de maio de 2009


Buddhist Conversion

As the legend goes, one day after the war was over, Ashoka ventured out to roam the city and all he could see were burnt houses and scattered corpses. This sight made him sick and he cried the famous monologue, "What have I done? Is this a victory, what's a defeat then! This is a victory or a defeat! This is justice or injustice! It's gallantry or a rout? Is it a valor to kill innocent children and women? I do it for enwide the empire or for prosperity or to destroy the other's kingdom or splendor? Someone has lost her husband, someone father, someone child, someone an unborn infant... what's this debris of the corpses? Are these marks of victory or defeat? Are these vultures, crows, eagles the messengers of death or evil? What have I done! What have I done" The brutality of the conquest led him to adopt Buddhism and he used his position to propagate the relatively new religion to new heights, as far as ancient Rome and Egypt. He made Vibhajyavada Buddhism his state religion around 260 BC. He propagated the Vibhajyavada school of Buddhism and preached it within his domain and worldwide from about 250 BC. Emperor Ashoka undoubtedly has to be credited with the first serious attempt to develop a Buddhist polity.

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