What was the Purpose of Ashoka’s Dhamma?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

The Purpose of Ashoka’s dhamma was to facilitate the innumerable religions and cultures of the Mauryan empire to live in sync with each other. Ashoka’s policy for the Mauryan kingdom was essentially a set of edicts or commandments known as Dhamma, which is the Prakrit form of the Sanskrit term Dharma.

Purpose of Ashoka’s Dhamma

Dhamma was Ashoka’s attempt to establish a set of rules and laws for the Mauryan empire so that the various cultures and religions could coexist in peace and harmony. Because of his public welfare policies, Ashoka is regarded as one of the greatest kings in Indian history.

In order to achieve harmony, Ashoka pleaded for tolerance of various religious sects. Dhamma’s policy also emphasized non-violence, which was to be practiced by foregoing war and conquests, as well as by refraining from killing animals. However, Ashoka realized that a little show of political power could be required to keep the primitive forest-dwelling tribes in check.

Furthermore, he etched his concepts of dhamma on the pillars and rocks and practiced the philosophy of Ahimsa religiously to set an example. His dhamma emphasized tolerance and acceptance and the idea of showing consideration towards workers and slaves. Lastly, his doctrine of the dhamma is often referred to as ethical order or moral law.

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