Christianity has rituals that say "NOW I am a Christian", but Buddhism does not. But always it is skillful. As a religion, Buddhism takes discipline and dedication, many of the doctrines are very difficult to wrap your head around, and its vast body of teachings can be intimidating. Is it one thing or many? The difference is that meditation is the very essence of Buddhism, not just the practice of a rarified elite of mystics. Buddhism doesn’t say other religions are wrong or anyone’s going to hell and doesn’t advocate judging others “nonbelievers” from afar, let alone sending them to some sort of eternal damnation. Maybe God is a metaphor for Nirvana. There's a story told in Buddhist lore about a follower of another religion who went to the Buddha to try to convert him. With all its ups and downs, this world of ours works. How Buddhism Benefits Mental Health. In Judaic/Christian teaching, the God of Exodus refused to be limited by a name or represented by a graven image. So that’s the bad news — we have to do it alone. Buddhism is a not a religion. Change comes slowly for most of us. But it’s really important not to burden ourselves with unrealistic expectations. In Buddhism believing comes last. Like other religions, Buddhism is practiced at different levels of subtlety, and sometimes it can be just as theistic as any other religion. You just have to understand what they are true of. For a great many people, there's an assumption that proper practice of ritual and behavior is what constitutes proper religion. Learn Religions uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Buddhism definitely asserts there is a reality that is not material. In conversations about religion, there is often discussion about converting from one religion to another. Also, much of what I’m saying about Buddhism also applies to the contemplative traditions of other religions. Topic: One million to convert to Buddhism : Hammer: posted October 23, 2001 01:14 AM One day, Low Cast Hindu Tamils will get frustrated with LTTE for using their kids to fight a war that they will never see a benefit and convert themselves to Buddhism or Christianity. Buddhism is unique among the world’s major world religions. Because who doesn’t know the value of being present and aware? Here are ten reasons why: Different schools of Buddhism have different views about who the Buddha was. 1.84; The University of Northampton; Michael Daniels. But it is easy to misinterpret this advice. People who are eager to convert others to their religion usually believe their religion is the "right" one—the One True Religion. There’s no Buddhist pope. According to a Pew Research Report, 20 percent of Americans — one-fifth of the adult population — describe themselves as religiously unaffiliated. There are fine books, excellent teachers (many of them now American), practice centers, communities, and indeed, magazines. It is not inside of us, it is not outside of us, it is beyond the reach of conventional mind. The other false assumption is that thinking the correct thoughts and believing the correct beliefs are what define religion. Alphabetical Order. What we find is that Buddhism works. But the rest — some thirty million Americans — maintain some type of spiritual belief and practice, even though they no longer feel at home in a church, synagogue, or mosque. In general, Buddhism is kind of a middle ground. Rigidly fixed beliefs seal us off from objective reality and from other people who don't share our beliefs. The Buddha called the truth of suffering “noble,” because recognizing our suffering is the starting place and inspiration of the spiritual path. We [...], © 2020 Lion's Roar | Email: [email protected] | Tel: 902.422.8404 | Published by Lion's Roar Foundation, Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window). Sign up for Lion’s Roar free email newsletters. It isn’t our aim to convert people or get them to join. 1. Doctrines can be like a flickering candle that keeps you from walking in total darkness. Westerners converting to Buddhism: An exploratory grounded theory investigation . For some people, Buddhism may offer an option if you are not finding yourself a good fit for the religion you currently practice. We are free to take what we wish. It is neither for us nor against us. "We are not considered Hindus and we Most of the doctrines of most of the world's religions reflect some small part of a great and absolute truth—a truth that perhaps should be considered symbolic rather than literal. The founder of Buddhism was Buddha Shakyamuni who lived and taught in India some two and a half thousand years ago. Hammer. It may be hard for humans to accept, but there are places our almighty imaginations and intellects simply cannot go. And while modern science can prove or disprove old beliefs about astronomy or human physiology, it cannot measure or test the nonmaterial. Other religions say that too; the difference is that in Buddhism this spiritual reality is not God. It’s the way we’ve related to religion for thousands of years. So, I AM exploring the Tao and Buddhism. The good news is, we can do it. The ultimate goal remember is to end suffering and to aid in the journey for fellow man kind. Additionally, there are subtleties of practice and dozens of different schools of thought that can be bewildering until you find the niche that's right for you. If people are not ready for the final truth, but a partial truth will help, that’s no … You’ll also see that when you meet a Buddhist meditator, even one who’s been at it for a long time. It is also quite clear that a religion that's good for one person can be all wrong for someone else. You don't have the utter lack of aggressive ability Jains have, but you also don't have to deal with castes like Hindus or struggle without heir designation. Buddhism offers a wealth of skillful means for different people’s needs. We might do well to follow the advice of Aldous Huxley in The Perennial Philosophy, who argued persuasively that all religions are really just dialects of the same spiritual language—and equally truthful and equally flawed as tools for communication. We have to face reality squarely, and we have to do it alone. They can be like markers on a path, showing you a way others have walked before. The problem is that things that feel helpful — like going along with our usual tricks — can sometimes make things worse. Even when Buddhists take refuge in the Buddha, what they’re really taking refuge in is the truth that there’s no refuge. By Luna Greenstein “Oṃ śhānti śhānti śhānti.” This mantra—meant to bring inner peace to those who chant it—is an example of the many connections between Buddhist teachings and mental health. By converting millions of these Mahars to Buddhism, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar returned them to the religion of their ancestors. This might be from one to another denomination within the same religion, for example, from Baptist to Catholic Christianity or … The first assumption is that an omnipotent and omnipresent entity such as God—or Brahma, or the Tao, or the Trikaya—can be completely understood by human intellect and that it can be expressed in doctrine form and transmitted to others with unfailing accuracy. Barbara O'Brien is a Zen Buddhist practitioner who studied at Zen Mountain Monastery. But while no one can do that for us, help and guidance is available. You cannot "convert" to Buddhism. His second noble truth was the cause of suffering. January 2008; Authors: Alasdair Gordon-Finlayson. You can read a book, attend classes, or hear a lecture by a Buddhist teacher. It’s fair to say that Buddhism is the most contemplative of the world’s major religions, which is a reflection of its basic nontheism. Buddhism has its positive and negative factors. Buddhism is about realization and experience, not institutions or divine authority. Finally, we experience ourselves and our world for what they have been since beginningless time, are right now, and always will be — nothing but enlightenment itself, great perfection in every way. Furthermore the whole basis of "conversion" is deciding to belief the teachings. All you can do is look directly, relax, and let go. COVID-19 has brought tremendous suffering, uncertainty, fear, and strain to the world. It may be infinitely vast and profoundly deep, it may be mysterious beyond concept, it may be far different than we think it is, but whatever reality is, this is it. Religious conversion is the adoption of a set of beliefs identified with one particular religious denomination to the exclusion of others. Even the truest doctrines are just pointers, shadows on a wall, fingers pointing to the moon. Get even more Buddhist wisdom delivered straight to your inbox! We’re working with patterns of ignorance, greed, and anger that have developed over a lifetime — if not much longer. Beings are infinite. Maybe Nirvana is a metaphor for God. We rely significantly on advertising and newsstand sales to support our work — both of which have dropped precipitously this year. While retaining our self-respect and judgment, we must be willing to accept the guidance, even leadership, of those who are further along the path. Does my mind change constantly or is it continuous? But they’re trying. Here is a list though there are genuine exceptions in both lists. In this context, skillfulness means any practices that reduce suffering in a meaningful, genuine way. About a third of the religiously unaffiliated describe themselves as atheists. Buddhism is not a one-path-fits-all religion. If you really have interest in Buddhism, I would suggest you to read and find out more about Buddhism, may be to attend the Buddhism class for beginner, try out you self whether this path is suitable for you or not.

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