Asoka realized that the goal of all religions was to help man develop self-control and regulate passions: anger, violence, greed, and lust.  All religions had laid down rules what Asoka called the “essential doctrine of sects (religions).” Morality was that glue; these rules stopped man from running amuck, these rules held man and the society together. Moral values varied from religion to religion. Over time, these rules were lost in the maize of metaphysics, rigid doctrines and rituals. As an example, take Christianity; it’s moral rules are simple: Love thy neighbor; don’t commit adultery, don’t kill, don’t steal, don’t covet. But a complex body of controversial doctrines, rituals and metaphysics grew up around those simple rules and divided the people.  Why? When Asoka reflected, he realized that this process occurred because human beings seek power; however, power cannot be built around moral rules since they are non-controversial; but dogma and rituals create controversies and generate heat (and wars); they are good for grabbing power. But dogmas and rituals also take people away from basic moral rules. Asoka wanted people to go back to basics. And he found those basics in the religion of Buddhism.