Jainism: The Buddhist And Jain Expression Of Ahimsa
and followed in each religion.
Ahimsa is the Sanskrit term for avoidance of violence (hinsa). This belief holds all life as
equal and intends on preserving all life forms via mankind. Buddhism as well as Jainism, follow
non-violent principles in their quest for liberation from the cycle of rebirth. However, it is the
latter one that takes the principle of no-harm to extremes. To live a life according to the
teachings of Ahimsa, humans need not to see any type of division when it comes to creation of
life, and must seek knowledge from their respective religions to combat it.
Buddhism was created by Siddharta Gautama, a member of the warrior caste (kshatriya),
who founded …show more content…
A decisive point in
the spread of Buddhism beyond the Indian territory occurred when King Ashoka rejected
violence and adopted Buddha’s teachings. As a result, ahimsa became the means for preventing
deadly battles and averting any kind of evildoing.
Jainism, as mentioned above, takes the notion of ahimsa to the extreme. Jainism was
founded by Nataputta Vardhamana, better known as Mahavira, who as Gautama pertained to the
warrior caste (kshatriyas). The principle of ahimsa (non-injury), the first of the “Five Great
Vows” Jain monks and nuns must commit themselves to, constitutes the hallmark of Jainism.
Both religions evidently agree on avoiding any sort of violence and leading followers to shun
hostility. However, in Jainism monastics are required to take drastic measures to avoid taking
life, consciously or unconsciously (Young, 102).
The belief of ahimsa is thought to be the greatest attribute that both religions share.
Buddhism as well as Jainism recognize in their respective doctrines the negative karmic effects
that adopting violence and hostility has to society. The principle of ahimsa leads to love