556 TALKS ON " AT THE FEET OF THE MASTER "
vast tracts of Asia, Europe aiğd Africa. This super-
stition has been a very terrible thing. There is no
religion except the Buddhist which h^s never perse-
cuted. That is a very fine recoFd. Of Buddhism
alone that is true. It has never persecuted any other
religion ; it could not, because of its inherent princi-
ples. It is bound to toleration by the very words of
its Founder, because the question is, who is a
Buddhist ? A Buddhist is a man who follows the
teaching of the Lord Buddha, not a man who believes
this or that, but a man who lives as the Lord Buddha
said he ought to. You might be a Hindu and a
Christian, or anything else you liked, because the
only test of a Buddhist is the life the man leads.
That question arises continually in the East. You
ask a missionary what will become of the really good
Buddhist, and he will answer :t£ Well, if he does not
believe in Christ, there is no hope for him 9' ; or, at
the best, they leave him to the uncovenanted mercies
of God, if he is a very good man. If you ask a
Buddhist the same question about a very good Christ-
ian, he will say: ct He is quite a Buddhist. He calls
himself a Christian; but as he is following the
teachings of the Lord Buddha he is quite all right."
That is the only religion which has not persecuted.
The superstition is not only bad for the person
himself, but it always leads to interference with other
people. Where there has been a prominent supersti-
tion it has led to an attempt to coerce other people.