Re: more about my experiences at Pune
thank you. Neither was the Buddha a republican. ;-)
Actually, I am fairly interested in the kind of topics you discussed, not what I would hear in general public talks. Which is why I am interested in private research and study.
The unique points as I understand are:
1. the Sangha is (or is supposed to be) a democratic-style assembly.
2. there are political entities during Buddha's times which were republics, but built upon a deeply-rooted caste system, i.e. having a ruling caste.
--- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, ashinpan wrote:
So throughout my lecture, I argued that the Buddha was not a democrat as popularly conceived.
- Dear Yong Peng
> The unique points as I understand are:As for (1), I think Sangha cannot be called a democratic institution. Because:
> 1. the Sangha is (or is supposed to be) a democratic-style assembly.
> 2. there are political entities during Buddha's times which were republics, but built upon a deeply-rooted caste system, i.e. having a ruling caste.
1. At Sangha functions (so-called sanghakammas), the objection of a single monk can overrule the majority vote. (In other words, each monk carries a veto.) So any given function can succeed only if each and everyone present in the assembly gives their agreement.
2. On the other hand, as long as one thinks he is right, he needn't follow the majority; a dhammavaadii (who upholds the dhamma) is a dhammavaadii, whether he is in the minority or in the majority.
3. If a group of monks cannot reach agreement over a controversy, they must live separately.
Of course such regulations cannot be adopted in a lay society.
- Bhante and Gunnar,
thank you for your sharing. Yes, it requires the understanding of the Vinaya rules relating to monks' assembly to determine if the Sangha is democratic to today's standards. Vinaya is an area I am not familiar with.