Contrasts between Christianity and Buddhism conclusion
How does Buddhism compare to Christianity and the gospel of Jesus Christ? How does the Buddhist concept of gods compare to the God of the Bible? Should people use images (idolatry) in worship? What about Buddhist doctrine regarding reincarnation, karma, and nirvana? How does the teaching of Buddha about suffering compare to Christian doctrine? Should a Christian accept or oppose Buddhism?
Our purpose is to examine the doctrines of Buddhism and compare them to the Bible.
The History of Buddhism
Buddhism is an offspring of Hinduism, similar to Hinduism in many ways. It began in India in about the 6th century B.C., and from there it spread throughout Asia. Today it is found mainly in Japan, China, and the Far East. Relatively few people in India itself are Buddhists today.
The system was begun by Gautama Buddha (the title "Buddha" means "one who is enlightened"). He was born about 563 B.C., and raised in a very wealthy family where he was protected from problems and suffering. Later he was exposed to suffering and became concerned with the cause of it. At age 29 he left his wife and son to seek a solution.
He tried and rejected both Hinduism and extreme self-deprival (asceticism). After 6 years of seeking, he arrived at the system that became Buddhism. Eventually he spent his life as a wandering religious teacher.
Major divisions of Buddhism
Buddhists have tried to adapt their religion to the views of people converted from other religions. The result was that people could believe almost anything and be Buddhist. The differences within Buddhism can be likened, not to the differences between Catholics and Protestants, but to those between Christians, Jews, and Muslims. [WR 169]
We will examine two major branches of Buddhism:
* Theravada is the older, conservative wing that follows the original teachings of Gautama. These Buddhists are found mainly in Southern Asia - Thailand, Burma, etc.
* Mahayana is the newer, liberal wing of Buddhism. Those of this view refer to conservatives as the "little vehicle" and themselves as the "great vehicle" because they believe their views are more practical for most people. They are found mainly in central and northern Asia - Japan, China, Korea, etc.
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Memories of perfect harmony — Free Malaysia Today
We respected one another's values and beliefs, so much so that I filled my chest with teachings of Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Atheism and so on, in addition to the compulsory Islamic classes for all Muslim girls.