Indo-Buddhist political culture - Political science

Indo-Buddhist political culture

For a long time, the Indo-Buddhist political culture attracted political scientists of other countries and peoples solely with its exquisite exotic exoticism. But in recent years, no less interest of researchers is the unexpected success of India in the development of high technology: the emergence of the Indian "Silicon Valley", the rapid growth of the economy. According to the forecasts of international experts, by 2050, India will become the world leader in terms of population, and by absolute size of GDP it will exceed the United States by one and a half times.

What are the factors that generate the successful development of Indo-Buddhist civilization today? What is the secret of the success of the Indo-Buddhist political culture in the present century, since not so long ago India was one of the poorest countries in the modern world? It is not easy to answer these questions: the Indo-Buddhist civilization strikes researchers with its multifaceted, spiritual richness of culture. The famous Indian writer M. Menoy believes that the Indo-Buddhist civilization was formed by two streams that met one another. One is sensual, the other is mental, one is the flow of form, the other is the flow of thought.

They came together and parted and again converged. One was Dravidian, and the other was Aryan. One reached its apogee in the form of the dancing god Nataraja, a symbol of the cosmic dance of a dynamic universe. The other rose to the abstract concept of monism in Advaita Shankara. One created music and dance, painting and sculpture, in short

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Sri, sounds, types and smells of civilization. The other created the world of the intellect - Indian philosophy, thinking. "

The sphere of modern political culture in India has many facets, it is extraordinarily deep, because it is closely connected with the most diverse levels of the colorful, often contradictory cultural and religious world of the country. It is the religion in this civilization that, from time immemorial, was intended to strengthen and illuminate political activity. A politician in India has never achieved success unless he has relied on a national religious and cultural tradition. The activities of every major religious preacher certainly received a strong political resonance. The political culture of the Indo-Buddhist civilization with good reason can be called sacred.

The world view of the Indians is unusual, even mysterious, since in this culture the habitual for Europeans trait between life and death is shifted. Partially the mystical orientation of Hindu consciousness can be explained by religion, in part - the natural landscape and history. By the will of destinies the geographical position of India was extremely favorable: generous gifts of nature provided the necessary conditions for the spiritual development of people. The ocean and the Himalayas protected from foreign invasions. Nature in abundance provided food, and man was spared from hard work and struggle for existence. When there is no need to give much effort to maintain physical existence, a person begins to think of more exalted matters. Perhaps the relaxing climate has led the Indians to peace and solitude.

The main religion of India - Hinduism - its roots go back to a very deep antiquity. The first sacred books of India are collections of hymns (vedas), which are more than three thousand years old. The most ancient is the Rigveda, or the "Veda of the hymns". These hymns were sung during sacrifices in order to propitiate the gods and nature.

The great Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore in the foreword to the publication of selected Indian sacred texts wrote: "Perhaps the strongest impression, embracing the reader of the hymns collected here, is that they are quite

Do not like the commandments ... Rather, it is a poetic testimony of the collective response of the people to the miracle and awe of being. A people with a strong and unrefined imagination was awakened at the very dawn of civilization with a sense of inexhaustible mystery embedded in life. It was a simple faith attributing divinity to every power of nature, but at the same time a courageous and joyful faith in which the fear of the gods was balanced by trust in them, in which the sense of mystery only added to the charms of life, not pressing it down with its weight.

Modern Indian scholars emphasize that Hinduism is not a single religion, especially if one approaches it with traditional Western criteria. The Indian concept of the divine does not go back to the image of a powerful heavenly Creator who dominates the world, but rather an idea of ​​the principle dominating from within. Most modern Indian scientists, speaking of the secrets of the universe, the origin and the vast hidden powers of the Cosmos , try to avoid using the word God. Nevertheless, they recognize the idea of ​​transcendental will, the world of reason, the idea of ​​evolution.

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Approximately this was the idea of ​​God from Albert Einstein. He wrote: "My religion consists of a modest admiration for the boundless superior spirit, manifesting itself in the smallest details that we are able to perceive with our weak minds. That deep emotional conviction in the presence of an ever greater logical force manifesting itself in the inexplicable universe is my idea of ​​God. "

But if Indian thought emerges from form into formlessness in its logical movement, then in the real world it triumphs and flourishes in abundance of forms. Anthropomorphism is natural for poets and even more natural for ordinary Hindus. They want to please their God, to worship him, not thinking about his character. To the Puranic Hinduism, which allows idolatry, today belongs most of the Hindus. Modern political scientists note with surprise that even

programmers from Bangalore, the Indian "Silicon Valley", in computer companies traditionally worship objects of their activity - computer terminals that are decorated with garlands of flowers and incense incense burners. Managers of Indian companies encourage anthropomorphism in staff behavior, as this makes people happy.

Modern research confirms the high degree of "sociocultural identification" of Indians with their traditional culture, the desire to follow it even among representatives of the business elite and the intelligentsia. So, specializing in software production, Indian businessmen emphasize that they want to remain culturally Indian, which does not prevent them from achieving economic success in the global market. It is known that the export of Indian software grows by an average of 50% per year and now provides more than 3 million jobs in the country, which indicates a successful combination of traditional and high-tech in this civilization.

Political scientists today talk about the high appeal of the Indo-Buddhist political culture in the eyes of representatives of other civilizations. Analyzing the neo-rhetorical boom in the West, experts point out that Europeans, who are addicted to Hinduism, explain this by a number of arguments, such as intra-religious pluralism, cosmism, ethicositrism, high assessment of the individual's capabilities, intellectualism, empiricality, instrumentality, coincidence in spirit with a number of discoveries of modern science.

But not only pluralism is a significant argument of the Indo-Buddhist civilization. It is widely known that from India today more and more models of culture are spreading, which are supported by the peoples of other civilizations. In the West, yoga exercises, meditation, tantrism are very popular. Such life teachers, or gurus like Deepak Chopra, Sathya Sai Baba, have a mass of followers in New York and Munich, London and Paris; their number today is about 70 million worldwide. In Kassel (Germany) it is possible to pass an eight-day improving course of ayurveda, before

offering food on special recipes, herbal teas, massage, individual treatment with immersion in hot springs.

For a deeper penetration into the essence of the ethos of the Indo-Buddhist political culture, it is important to emphasize that in the center of the Hindu worldview is the problem of duty - dharma (from Danish Sanskrit , support). This is an ethical concept, including a code of morality, righteousness, the whole range of duties and responsibilities of a person. For the Indian political culture, the concept of duty (dharma) has the same significance as the rights of the individual for Western culture. And since the supreme goal of life is to merge with the One, moral perfection is necessary, for which it is necessary to fulfill one's duty, for duty is a means for achieving the highest perfection. By virtue of this , Indians attach primary importance to the duties of a person, not to his rights.

Indian political culture from the very beginning evolved as "ethocentric, collectivist." The moral law here has an absolute, cosmic status. The concept of karma (retribution) implies that there is a natural moral causation in the world: what you sow in the life of the earth, then reap in the life of the future. And since in accordance with karma retribution overtakes the criminal inevitably, politicians and statesmen here very rarely become tyrants: the fear of the inevitability of punishment was acting.

By the law of karma, the socio-political structure of India is also based - the division into castes. Unsatisfactory performance of the duty of his caste leads to a birth in a lower caste, and even in the form of an animal, often unclean, and on the contrary, rigorous service to duty leads to a future birth in a higher caste. In the view of the Indians, socio-political inequality is a consequence of the moral inequality of people.

But the main features of the Indian national character and political temperament are related to the concept of reincarnation (reincarnation). Mahatma Gandhi in a letter to L.N. Tolstoy asked his permission to exclude places with criticism of reincarnation from the article of the latter about India: "The belief in the reincarnation or the transmigration of souls

is very dear to millions of people in India, as well as in China. We can say that for many people this is already a matter of personal experience, and not just theoretical admissibility. It serves as a consolation ... The belief in reincarnation predetermined the non-individualistic of Indians, surprising for the European consciousness. They are not inclined to attach the fundamental importance of one's self as such, since it is nothing more than a change of clothing of the eternal "I" - the human soul, which after the death of the mortal body is able to move into another body. That is why Indians are so tolerant of other people, their opinions, beliefs, political views; preach the ethics of nonviolence, concern for nature and the world around us (after all, after the death of the body, the human soul can enter only into other people, but also into animals).

However, there is a profound contradiction between the breadth and diversity of the spiritual outlook, the amazing tolerance in questions of understanding and interpretation of higher symbols and discouraging dogmatism in matters of pragmatic organization of socio-political life. The basic ideas of the Hindu tradition are fixed by political conservatism : the world has developed once and for all and exists in the eternal cycle of forms. Good and evil, wars, inequality, oppression - all this is natural, and therefore it is necessary to fulfill the prescribed from the century. If you stink - kill, if the elephant driver - if their staff. It is natural and sacred; the faithfulness of caste morality should support society in equilibrium.

Much more politically flexible is the morality of Buddhism , which appeared in India much later than Hinduism, in the IV-V centuries. BC. e. The researchers note that both these religions are very close to each other. Buddhist and Hindu morals are related in much the same way as the New and Old Testament in Christianity. It is known that in India Buddhism twice became something of a state religion: under Ashok the Great in the 3rd c. BC. and under the kings of the Kushan dynasty in the I-II centuries. BC. However, the old Hindu tradition, renewed under the influence of Buddhism, gradually changed its form and managed to regain lost ground. Buddhism in many ways softens the extreme manifestations of estate conservatism, characteristic of Hinduism, referring to each person, bypassing castes,

Estate, tribes: "The law is the same for all. The law takes care of both the lower, and the middle, and the higher ... No one can oppose the law & quot ;. However, in general, modern political ethics still did not overcome a completely class-based, caste character.

For example, in the Buddhist Ceylon (Sri Lanka), the caste system still exists today, albeit in a somewhat relaxed form. In India there are 70 million untouchables who are forbidden to use common wells, walk on the right side of the street, visit temples. Theoretically, these bans in modern India are abolished, the untouchables are reserved seats in parliament, higher education institutions, they have equal political rights with other citizens of the country. However, everything remains the same in rural areas. Attempts to take advantage of their legal rights cause pogroms, sometimes with human casualties. In cities, such pogroms are rare. But, European journalists noted, when the leader of the untouchables, the lawyer Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar (now deceased), was in charge of the court, the employees who took the case from him later bathed, and clients - thieves and prostitutes - were cast away from their defender, so "not lose caste ".

As the sociological studies of recent years show, even among highly educated urban youth, the majority of respondents agreed to allow their parents to choose their spouse from their caste for them. However, young people immediately confessed their sympathies to a colleague of work and attempts to explain it to their parents. Intra-custody marriages in cities are increasingly replaced by inter-caste and interreligious, although the tradition to follow throughout their caste still dominates.

The most important principle of Indian civilization is this: the path to a perfect political structure does not lead to the improvement of external forms of life, but through the improvement of the person himself, his moral and cultural world. This humane , nonviolent way of perfecting the human soul requires patience and perseverance, wisdom and consistency. The high moral principles of the ethics of non-violence, moral activity, unity of politics and morality, the unity of scientific and political truth, civil disobedience have become an important contribution of the Indo-Buddhist civilization to the treasury of world culture.

It is interesting that the heroes of modern India, including the Indian management guru Narayan Murthy, the head of Infosys, the leader of Indian industry, consider following the canons of Indian culture as the basis for successful activity in all spheres of public life. Paternalism, collectivism, high standards of honest conduct, a personal example of the relentless moral concern of managers about the well-being of their subordinates who feel themselves to be one family is the reason for the rapid success of modern Indian companies. Narayan Murthy and other successful Indian businessmen do not want to leave the country. According to opinion polls, the majority of successful young entrepreneurs in modern India feel pride in belonging to the Indian nation and strive to contribute to the development of the national economy.

If twenty years ago for Indian youth was characterized by the desire to try to leave for study in the West in order to get a good education and make a career, today young Indians prefer to stay in India. And this is no surprise, because it is in India today you can get a wonderful education and a career: it's no secret that Indian programmers are considered the best in the world. The Indian middle class is growing rapidly, the standard of living in cities is rising, and even now the Indian province is still poor and poorly educated, thanks to the successes of the advanced branches of the economy, it has prospects, and this is the main thing.

The political culture of modern India is contradictory, even split, but it contains the most important - humane universal civilizational alternative. M.Menon wrote this very figuratively:

We [the Hindus] are like pilgrims walking in a long march. Some go ahead. In their hands they carry torches. They are closer to Bliss. Others were behind us. They are almost in darkness. They are still aroused by the tickling of feelings.

And this will continue for centuries. We have a great goal - the progressive deification of man. Those who are behind will seek to please their feelings, and those who have come forward will increase their knowledge. Two Flows

Our civilization, like the Ganges and Yamuna, together continue to irrigate our land. "

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