Buddhism And Socrates Similarities

1390 Words 6 Pages
Most people agree our culture has been shaped by philosophy in one form or another throughout history, however, may people tend to reflect on specific philosophers. Eastern culture tends to reflect on eastern philosophy, dating back to Confucius and the Buddha, and western culture with western philosophy, dating back to Aristotle, Socrates, and Plato. Is there a reason for this? Is it fair to say that our different cultures have more or less accepted the philosophical principles of our own native philosophers? With education, almost everyone has heard of or been taught historic philosophies of the eastern and western cultures, and can apply it to their lives willingly, but I believe there are a few more differences between the two that instigates …show more content…
A society that is unethical is going to collapse sooner than an ethical one. Buddha and Socrates understood the gravity of ethics in our daily lives, which is why they had complementary ideas about ethics. Many people focus on the spiritual ethics in Buddhism, but the similarities between Socrates and Buddha actually come from economical ethics. These pertain to the wealth of an individual, as well as the wealth of a community and government. Buddha's teachings included advice on how to use their wealth. This is found in the “Right livelihood” of the Noble Eightfold Path, and generally refers to making one's living without murder, stealing or deceitfulness. Early Buddhist writings show success in a job can be aided by one's spiritual and moral qualities, and depending on how ethically the person uses their acquitted wealth will either continue, or karma will affect the outcome of their success. aided by one's spiritual and moral qualities. The Buddha placed much emphasis on the virtue of giving and sharing, as well as, donating and charity are essential in Buddhist economic ethics. Even the poor are encouraged to share, because this gives them wealth spiritually. If beings knew, as I know, the results of giving & sharing, they would not eat without having given, nor would the stain of selfishness overcome their minds. Even if it were their last bite, their last mouthful, they would not eat without having shared, …show more content…
Confucius taught on an ideal ruler for the process of government. This ruler would be superior in their integrity and morality, and would be an example to others, in order to cultivate their own morality. A good ruler would seek to correct his subjects with love and concern rather than punishment and coercion. Furthermore, he explained that traditions were more important in molding the ideals of the people, rather than laws. He even put forth, “If the people be led by laws, and uniformity among them be sought by punishments, they will try to escape punishment and have no sense of shame. If they are led by virtue, and uniformity sought among them through the practice of ritual propriety, they will possess a sense of shame and come to you of their own accord.” Good rulers would surround themselves with moral men who would give good advice, and the government would need to be sensitive financially, and weary of taxation on the people. Aristotle focused on Democracy, with heavy emphasis on rulers who were indignant, rather than men of property. In addition, the political community in this democracy would need a middle class that is on control, and one that outnumbers the other classes. These two different opinions on how a government should run can be seen today in eastern and western governments as well. Western governments focus more on democratic societies with a high number of middle class citizens,

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