A Concept of Dhamma in DR. B. R. Ambedkar’s Viewpoint with Special Reference to Buddhist Scriptures

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Phramaha Pornchai Sirivaro Rungnibha Liang

Abstract

While trying to differentiate the meaning between Religion and Dhamma, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar claimed that the Buddha made use of Dhamma because it contains social meaning, whereas Religion did not have it. In this matter, Dhamma is opposite to whatever quality Religion has. Therefore, Dhamma comes to gain the essential quality for every society while Religion has no room for any society. By virtue of the mentioned claim, in this article, an attempt was purposely made to argue that to some extent Dhamma may be suitable for every society in applying for living life but etymologically Dhamma in question also contains many meanings. If so, then, such a concept of Dhamma fails to be fit in the application. In order to support of this argument, two evidences are shown as follows: 1) traditionally the word Dhamma may refer to: religion, law/usage/ practice, nature/essential quality or characteristic property, right, justice, morality, etc., 2) although there were times the Buddha made use of Dhamma for the meaning of good action, yet, there also were times the Buddha means defilements in the form of Dhamma.

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บทความวิชาการ