An Exposition of the Buddhist Philosophy of Protecting Life and Animal Protection

  • Chao-hwei Shih
Part of the Chinese Literature and Culture in the World book series (CLCW)


Responding to the anthropocentrism of Western bioethics, the Taiwanese Buddhist scholar-activist Chao-hwei Shih argues for the equality of life—a form of equality that applies to all sentient beings. Instead of relying on Buddhist scriptural authority, Chao-hwei adopts a style of discourse modeled on Western philosophy in order to develop a Buddhist bioethics based on key Buddhist principles: dependent arising, protecting life, and the Middle Way. She compares Buddhist ethics with contemporary standards of bioethics that are generally applied only to humans. For Chao-hwei, nonhuman animals are not part of the environment because they are co-equal with humans. In this form of Buddhist environing, Chao-hwei redraws the boundaries of huanjing (the environment) to surround all sentient beings.


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chao-hwei Shih
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Religion and CultureHsuan Chuang UniversityHsinchu CityTaiwan

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