Buddhist Views of Social Concerns in the United States
In the teachings of Buddhism, all beings are equal and each life is noble and deserving of respect. In the United States, much if not all the social problems stem from prevailing attitudes that justify inequality and deny the dignity of each human being. Religious communities can play a significant part in pointing out discriminatory views and behavior—bringing conscience to those in power, and standing up for those who are treated unjustly. There is only so much each of us as individuals can do. But as Buddhists, we cannot turn a blind eye to the forces in our communities that make a few people wealthier and make increasing numbers of people less able to pay for basic needs. We find that these unfortunate persons in our community are less and less able to participate in cultural and religious activities.