Sunday, September 5, 2010

why Buddhists should be communists

From the Maitreyavyākaraṇa (The Prophecy of Maitreya): a result of Maitreya's teachings, they will lead a holy life. No longer will they regard anything as their own, they will have no possession, no gold or silver, no home, no relatives!
See also: Buddhist wisdom


  1. That's a very good point, but I don't see a lot of communists wandering around with begging bowls.

  2. There's no need for begging bowls in a society that isn't divided between princes and paupers.

  3. The thing that you keep missing when you talk about "communist" or "capitalist" or "Buddhist" is that what makes a society one way or another is how its citizens act. You can have a communist society run by stingy people, and everyone will be miserable except the ones who control the allocation of resources. Think: Soviet Russia. You can have a capitalist society where people have what they need. Think: modern-day Netherlands.

    What's different? It's the actions of the people. That's all. What matters is what people think and do, not what the law says. You can change all the laws you want, but if you don't get the people to change, it won't make any difference.

  4. I have made that argument about whether the Civil War was necessary. But slavery might've continued twenty or thirty years without the war.

    The Tea Party members are, on average, richer than other Americans.

    As for the Maitreya prophecy, how do you get people to choose the right thing? Smokers weren't the majority, yet it took no-smoking laws to make change possible. Good laws make good examples of what we can be.

    Heck, if you want to stick with the choice argument, people choose whether or not to obey laws.

    So how can you say the Maitreya won't inspire people by advocating good laws?

  5. I doubt that slavery would have continued on that long- it was uneconomical in a modern economy. Note that the entire Confederacy had just over a quarter of the GDP of the state of New York.

  6. Joel, it could've gone either way. The rulers of the South were invested in slavery, not just monetarily, but philosophically, even religiously. McPherson makes a good argument for slavery continuing in Battle-cry of Freedom.

    I think Brazil kept slavery until 1890. The CSA might've kept it until the early 20th century.