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Comments #9461875:

Warrior Monks 29 2, 5:12pm

@RainbowGummis First off, this is japanese buddhism, which is very much its own animal in terms of philosophy. Second, "innocent" is the key word here. The Sohei typically viewed their actions in the context of protecting the innocent. Of course, like the Templars (which had broadly similar ideals), they ended up playing power politics with all the other warlords and factions, and some interpreted it as "protect the innocent from themselves" by acting as quasi-feudal lords. Others ended up leading peasant revolts (some of which came VERY close to toppling samurai rule) or joining themselves to one clan or another.

Another thing to keep in mind is that a great number of Sohei during their "golden age" (between the Genpei War and the end of the Sengoku Jidai) were originally samurai who'd joined up either due to being disillusioned by the politics of the day (which could be summed up with the words "cut-throat" and maybe "machiavellian") or after being forced from their original positions. Both groups were frequently still inclined to think in martial terms.

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