Buddhism and Non-Violence in the Contemporary World
Jay Garfield

June 15, 2023, 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Philosophy and Gender Studies, University of Tasmania

Physics Room 218, Sandy Bay Campus

This event is available both online and in-person


  • The EthicsLAB University of Tasmania

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When we use the word nonviolence in English, we are usually taking ourselves to translate the Sanskrit ahiṃsā.  That term is more precisely translated as non-harm, or non-injury.   Violence in English connotes violation, which in turn connotes a kind of deviation from the normal, from the expected, or the required. Hiṃsā, deriving from a root that means to strikes, simply connotes injury to oneself or to another. The point is important because much of what constitutes hiṃsā, or harm, is often normal, expected, or even legally and socially required despite its morally problematic status. The Engaged Buddhist movement directs our attention to the normalization of harm, or what we have come to call violence, in everyday life, and the need for radical change if we are to lead—individually or collectively—lives of ahiṃsā or nonviolence. I present a Buddhist analysis of nonviolence in a way relevant to our contemporary life. To do so, I first explain how violence manifests in the contemporary world.  Second, I develop a Buddhist analysis of that violence and its causes. Third, I ask how a Buddhist ethical framework determines our responsibilities as agents in the context of that violence and a path to its eradication. 

Please note you can physically attend (video-link) or remotely join us through the Zoom link below.

Time:                  June 15, 2023, 02:00-4.00PM Hobart

Venue:                Physics rooms 218 in Hobart and room 001, Building A at Newnham

Online/Zoom: https://utas.zoom.us/s/85331820730

Meeting ID: 853 3182 0730  

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