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Buddhism and Political Theory

Matthew J. Moore


This book provides a comprehensive survey and analysis of Buddhist political theory from the time of the Buddha to the present. Western scholars have long but mistakenly believed that Buddhism was antipolitical, but a careful examination of the primary texts reveals a rich and valuable political theory, based on three premises: that human beings are not selves, that politics is necessary but not very important, and that ethics is advice for living wisely but not a system of universal, obligatory rules. Buddhism and Political Theory provides careful readings of all the relevant primary texts an ... More

Keywords: Buddhism, political theory, ethical irrealism, ethical antirealism, Friedrich Nietzsche, William Connolly, no-self, anattā doctrine, immanence, limited citizenship

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780190465513
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2016 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190465513.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Matthew J. Moore, author
Associate Professor of Political Science, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo