Religion of Buddhism and Government
Religion of Buddhism and Government

Religion of Buddhism and Government

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  • Pages: 3 (1173 words)
  • Published: September 30, 2021
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Harvey (25) describes Buddhism as a religious teaching, although most Buddhists do not recognize it as a religion but as a philosophy, propagated and disseminated by Buddha and his followers which states that the causes of suffering in life are desire, hatred and delusion and by destroying them one can attain a state of enlightenment. The history of the religion has several stories, but the most narrated is the story of Prince Siddhartha Gautama. According to (Harvey, 58), the prince is said to have deduced that suffering in human life is as result of desire and if one can curb their desires they would attain the state of perfect enlightenment or as the Buddhists say, Nirvana. Buddhism is a religion that incorporates discipline and persistence in one’s daily activities.

The story of the beginning of the Buddhism religion is from 2500 years ago which means it is an ancient religion (Epstein, 63). Buddhism is mostly associated with monks and temples over the ages. The religion does have an expectation of continuous meditation through which one will achieve the state of no desire. The religion is mostly practiced in Asian countries. Over the centuries, the religion has been used to incorporated several policies into governments of many nations of the Asian continent specifically in Japan, Thailand, China just to name a few ((Epstein, 84). The paper is going to discuss why Buddhism religion should not play any role in developing government policy toward genetic engineering of food as the faith.

According to (Pascalev, 584), genetic engineering is the artificial

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manipulation of the genetic composition of a plant, an animal or any other living organism, by the introduction of foreign genes into the DNA of the subject organism to create a transgenic organism. The products of these alterations contain genes that consequently do not exist in nature or do not develop naturally (Pascalev, 587).

In the recent years of the practice of genetic engineering has raised an argument on whether the process is philosophically ethical and how safe the practice is in the long run (Reiss et al., 709). The science of genetic engineering was discovered in 1900 when but took almost half a century for people to understand it (Swaminathan, 79). Different societies of the world have they own differences of opinion on the subject. Religions have had front row seats in describing genetic engineering of organisms as against God’s will, unnatural and unethical (Reis et al., 708). According to Reiss et al. (708), the theological view is that man is trying to exploit the creation order to (or “intending to”) meet their ends.

Gamble et al. (1) in her book explains that the public view on the subject of genetic engineering was how safe would the products of the process be and long term and short term health risks. The public was also concerned oh how the production of genetically engineered food would affect the market for organic products (Gamble et al., 2). A large number of the members of the public usually know little or nothing at all about genetic engineering. Their only concern being the availability of safe food to eat.

The reason

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for genetically engineering plants and animals is for the purpose of increase yield (Swaminathan, 57). As the global population grows, the yield of agricultural products also has to increase at the same rate to avoid a global starvation catastrophe. The Buddhism religion encourages living as naturally as possible (Epstein, 72), so the idea of manipulating the genetics of organisms to produce more food to feed a growing population will be turned down by the religion due to its unnatural way of production.

In Pascalev’s journal (596), the rate of rural-urban migration keeps increasing over the years, and this phenomenon has resulted in reduced agricultural production rates. The reason because most agricultural products come from the rural areas and with most migrating to urban settings where there is little or no agricultural activities, the food production is small. Thus many governments have resulted in the genetic engineering of food to be able to feed its citizens.

Increased damaged to ecological foundations is another factor that reduces the agricultural yield and encourages genetic engineering (Swaminathan, 58). Buddhism teaches healing, not only of the mind and body of an individual but also of the environment (Harvey, 49). Although this whole idea is a good notion, it may take a long time to reconstruct the damage done to the land in agricultural areas. Thus a growing population cannot wait for land to heal so that they can be able to eat. The governments will have to go on with the genetic engineering of food to feed their nations.

Products of genetic engineering are globally feared to have possible and potential health hazards. Buddhism states that a healthy body encourages a healthy mind (Harvey, 42). The fear of food having potential health risks is a discouragement to any Buddhist to support the policy of genetic engineering. Thus they will set their minds in denying the production of this kind of food. Though there is a global debate on whether the information available on the potential health risks of genetic engineering is sufficient, most countries go on with the process due to their large populations. Thus the whole process according to Buddhists will be an experiment, on a national scale, on how long one can live on genetically engineered food before one starts to suffer health wise.

The benefits of genetic engineering of food surpass the problems that skeptics may think the whole idea causes. The food problem may be solved once and for all if the idea goes to a global scale. As the study goes on, the possible health risks of genetic engineering products are noted. In Buddhism, one takes time before they can meditate for long hours and attain the state of perfect peace (Harvey, 68). There are Buddhists who are known to take years before they can master meditation. The same virtue of patience Buddhists practice in their religion should be practiced as the study of genetically engineered food goes on. The world is on the verge of a global crisis due to the high rate of population growth. Nations must be able to feed their citizens in this age.
The Buddhism religion is grounded in

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