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The Buddha and Revolutions

The old social order of ancient India was complicated and disorder includes the way of life and social system. Buddha was a strategist who envisioned the new social order to replace the old social order of ancient India. He came to revolve them in the age of over 30 year with the great triumphing.  He deliberated and emancipated the mind of people from beliefs, traditions, and four castes of social order. The new social order that given by the Buddha was the new hope, new life, new light, new way and new order.


The social structure in India was built in a rigid philosophical system. Their views of the nature of the order was everything has to follow and correspond to its own nature that it belonged to. The concept of social order was based on a strong caste system. The social order that was divided through family and birth. People had to follow and accept the family line and had no choice or freedom. The four caste order were: 1) Brahmanic class which regarded as the highest class that born from the mouth of Brahman. They enjoyed their privileges as the teachers and the purified. 2) Ksatriya class which were born to rule and lead the state, 3) Vaishyas belonged to the family line of businessman or merchant, and Shudras which had no social privilege and regarded as the bottom of social group. The god created them to do the different tasks.  They could not change. Therefore, the division was very strong.

Buddha realized that this kind of social order were led to discrimination and suffer. It was hard to find peace, happiness and social progresses in such social system. It was a totally wrong to uphold such social system and the ideas that the purification and value of the people were determined by birth. He revolved against the system and concepts in Kutadanta Sutta of Digha Nikāya:

“Not by birth is one an outcaste, not by birth is one a Brahman.

By deeds is one an outcaste, by deeds is one a Brahman”

People are not purified by birth or caste. People are not dignified or vulgar by birth and caste. The dignity, purification and value of the people are measured by action. The property and family line are just the temporary conditions of the people. The value, dignity or vulgar of the people are depend on what words they speak, the actions they do and the thought they hold. He went on to reject the caste system that using the biological conditions such as hair, color and body.  Brahmin regarded themselves as the top and purified. The Brahmin alone could get the liberation or find eternal liberation (Moska). Buddha responded by allowing all kind of classes to become the monk.  In the community of monk, everyone had to respect the elder or the virtuous one regardless what family line he belonged to or one belonged to.

The new social order and philosophical concepts of life brought the great change. It was new understanding that gave the opportunity to everyone to find their freedom and privileges in leading their lives. All the people had to work to get their positions and values.  Self-image had no longer depend on the caste but on what they did and contributed to serving others and society. It was a great courage to enhance social harmony, social progresses and social order.