Originally posted by kevcvs57
Given the inter faith violence between Muslims and Buddhist's that has been taking place in Burma:-
Is there anything incongruous about a claim of following the tenets of Buddhism and commtting acts of violence, both in a defensive, and as seems to be the case highlighted in the link below, an aggressive sense?
To answer the op simply, I would say "yes".
There is No real Buddhist who is a "True "Buddhist" anyway.
There have been several people claiming the title "Buddha" but I suspect that was only for descriptive purposes for the masses, to tell others that they have claimed to have the reached the same consiousness as the original Buddha - the only one who is really the "Buddha" .
Buddhism was started by Buddha's followers who faithfully recorded the sermons and teachings of the original Buddha.
At it's core is the unveiling of a complete system of psychology which is at it's best and most incisive when explaining "truths" in terms of stories about the life of the original Buddha, and the stories about the lives other "Buddha's" and Bhodisattvas. It is always been most noteworthy that every "True Buddhist" or Bhodisattva has always gone against the grain of conventional society of their time, never adhering strictly to written doctrine but always relying on their own authority in ALL matters, often having to adapt their peaceful, yet life promoting stance [on the universe] to the politics of their day.
Some of the strongest Buddhist stories I have encountered were from Christians or atheists who served in war and personally witnessed monks, who knew they and their monastary would be taken by armed forces and they would likely be tortured and killed, who sat in lotus position and lit themselves on fire just in time to "escape" the invading forces.
I have heard at least 5 or 6 ex-soldiers say that their witnessing these "ritual suicides" have been the most moving and life changing events in their lives, often changing their complete world view irreversibly.
And we are reminded, as we reflect on Buddha as he was approached from behind by the most notorious murderer of his time, who wore a chain around his neck of one of all his victims fingers, that as he approached he thought what an easy kill this would be. When he reached the Buddha the Buddha turned with absolutely no fear and looked the killer in the eyes, which were said to be "full of compassion for all life",especially this fully sentient human that was before him.
It is said that at this moment the murderer dropped his knife and fell to his knees and implored Buddha to take him on as a disciple on the spot.
He is also noted to have been one of Buddha's best disciples for the rest of his life.
I haven't read the link yet, I'll get back to this soon.