• As a Buddhist friend explained it to me, you can believe in God...or not. Buddhism is more a philosophy of life than a "religion". Not that Buddhists do not believe in a "higher power",...they may or may not personify it as other faiths/religions do. Difficult to explain. Most Buddhists do, however. There are different sects and philosophies in Buddhism. Most of the Buddhist traditions in Southeast Asia kept their local deities. Many adopted some of the Hindu deities. But the "classic", or Mahayana Buddhists have kept the original preachings of Govinda, the chief disciple of Siddhartha. There are no "devils or deamons" or gods of rivers or mountains..or gods of birth and death. It is the form of Buddhism that the Dahli Llama, the true spiritual leader (and king) of Tibet, practices. The Chinese will not release their hold on Tibet. They consider it vital to their "national security". Its high mountains look down on the plain of Turkhistan and surrounding provinces. They took it by invasion in 1953. No-one could...or would stop them. The US was still involved in Korea. Protests were made to the U.N.,...useless, of course. Tits on a boar hog are pretty useless. Anyway, the Dahli Llama is in India, but his people have never forgotten him. The Chinese rule in Tibet, but they rule by force only. It bothers them greatly that the true leader still lives...and is still adored by the Tibetans. Mao is dead, Chouen Lai is dead. The "gang of four" are all dead....But the Dahli Llama lives.
  • Erm I'm a Buddhist and Taoist. But I don't know how to answer your question =x All i know is we pray to deities. Like Guan Yin etc.
  • The original "Buddha" dude was actually Indian, even tho Buddhism is Chinese. Anyways, they believe in the whole 'look on the bright side of life' philosophy and all that. They don't have a god or anything... Buddha was just their dude to look up to!
  • Buddhism is a family of beliefs and practices, considered by many to be a religion. A Buddhist is one who takes refuge in The Three Jewels: the Buddha (the Awakened One), the Dharma (the Teaching of the Buddha) and the Sangha (the Community of Buddhists). Various sources put the number of Buddhists in the world between 230 million to 500 million. Most Buddhists live in Asia, but adherents are found worldwide. Buddhism is based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as "the Buddha", who lived in the northeastern region of the Indian subcontinent. He probably died around 400 BCE. Buddhists recognize him as an awakened teacher who shared his insights to help sentient beings end their suffering by understanding the true nature of phenomena, thereby escaping the cycle of suffering and rebirth (saṃsāra). Among the methods various schools of Buddhism apply towards this goal are: ethical conduct and altruistic behaviour, devotional practices, ritual and the invocation of holy beings that help them achieve Nirvana, renunciation of worldly matters, meditation, study and the cultivation of wisdom. For more information, see:
  • Like all major religions, Buddhism contains an explanation of the origin of existence, a morality, and a specific set of rituals and behaviors. ... Buddhism presents a transformational goal, a desire to improve one's situation, and a distinct moral code. However, some definitions of "religion" require a belief in the existence of one or more deities. That would disqualify most branches of Buddhism from being considered as religious groups. Atheism is not a complete religion in the sense that Christianity, Islam, and, Judaism are. Atheism is not generally perceived as offering a complete guideline for living as do most religions. However, Atheists frequently derive their own ethics and philosophy of life and worldview using their Atheism as a starting point. They are generally derived from secular considerations, and not from any "revealed" religious text. Many Atheists now celebrate the Winter Solstice. Some Atheists, when asked what their religion is, will answer, simply, "Atheist." Others will say that they "have no religion, they are an Atheist." Buddhism, like most of the great religions of the world, is divided into a number of different traditions. However, most traditions share a common set of fundamental beliefs. One fundamental belief of Buddhism is often referred to as reincarnation -- the concept that people are reborn after dying. In fact, most individuals go through many cycles of birth, living, death and rebirth. A practicing Buddhist differentiates between the concepts of rebirth and reincarnation. In reincarnation, the individual may recur repeatedly. In rebirth, a person does not necessarily return to Earth as the same entity ever again. He compares it to a leaf growing on a tree. When the withering leaf falls off, a new leaf will eventually replace it. It is similar to the old leaf, but it is not identical to the original leaf. After many such cycles, if a person releases their attachment to desire and the self, they can attain Nirvana. This is a state of liberation and freedom from suffering.
  • I am speaking for myself here, not Buddhists in general (I think you'll get different answers from different people, and generalities are misleading here). - Buddhism neither denies nor affirms the existence of God. The Buddha was silent on the issue, basically. More to the point, a key thrust of Buddhism is that the individual is responsible for investigating their own experience and learning primarily from that, rather than trusting in belief systems and ancient writings. So it would be a contradiction for Buddhism to have an "official belief" about God and teach that to people. - Buddhism is anti-belief. More precisely, Buddhism considers all beliefs to be deserving of challenge. A human is generally better off with "I don't know" than blind belief: the former allows one to be aware and inquire, the latter tends to generate complacent ignorance. - Buddhism stresses awareness practice and personal authenticity, rather than adherence to systems of ideas. If one is able to free oneself from ideas and conditioned thinking, it becomes possible to see oneself and life in a new mode: freshly, free from dogma, open, and integrated. That ability to see and respond to life appropriately and authentically is the main point of Buddhism... merely accumulating ideas and beliefs is the booby prize.
  • well it is a paradox to be a religion and atheist for me it is a philosophy therefore can be considered atheist .
  • Buddhism is not a belief system. It is about knowing, not believing and belief in a supreme being especially is seen as a form of delusion. As Ven Walpola Rahula puts it in "What the Buddha Taught": "For self-protection man has created God, on whom he depends for his own protection, safety and security, just as a child depends on its parent. For self-preservation man has conceived the idea of an immortal Soul or Ä€tman, which will live eternally. In his ignorance, weakness, fear, and desire, man needs these two things to console himself. Hence he clings to them deeply and fanatically. The Buddha’s teaching does not support this ignorance, weakness, fear, and desire, but aims at making man enlightened by removing and destroying them, striking at their very root. According to Buddhism, our ideas of God and Soul are false and empty. Though highly developed as theories, they are all the same extremely subtle mental projections, garbed in an intricate metaphysical and philosophical phraseology. These ideas are so deep-rooted in man, and so near and dear to him, that he does not wish to hear, nor does he want to understand, any teaching against them. The Buddha knew this quite well. In fact, he said that his teaching was ‘against the current’ (patisotagāmi), against man’s selfish desire. Just four weeks after his Enlightenment, seated under a banyan tree, he thought to himself; ‘I have realized this Truth which is deep, difficult to understand… comprehensible only by the wise… Men who are overpowered by passions and surrounded by a mass of darkness cannot see this Truth, which is against the current, which is lofty, deep, subtle and hard to comprehend.’"
  • The one thing which really changes the way people should look at Buddhism is to always remember the Buddha was only a man, he never claimed to be more. Therefore he is giving his interpretation on things in his life, it is up to us in the end to interpret our own. But the foundation beliefs are based on the four noble truths, i think. Regardless it is a passive religion, it doesn't threaten you with eternal damnation or bribe you with heaven. It is simplistically based upon logic. With an exception of the reincarnation business which is a big part of Buddhism. But despite that it is nothing short of an amazing history of one mans unique philosophy.
  • I don't really see it as a religion but as a philosophy pr way of life. . It doesn't teach you what to believe. It gives a way of learning for yourself. . +5
  • Some of the answers here are interesting. I have practised a Buddhist way of life for the last 10+ years, and have learnt so much from my mentors. But the main thing that sticks out is that it is a way of life, not a religion. It depends I suppose asto what you class as a religion, but as somebody pointed out, Buddha was just a man and did not proffess to be anything else.
  • What is atheism and what is religion?
  • I see it as a philosophy and way of life, seeking to remove delusion and conditioning from our decisions and behaviour. It is he opposite of god based cults where some external force is supposed to tell you how to behave and then punish or reward you accordingly. In Buddhism you take responsibility yourself for your behaviour and its consequences.
  • Buddhists do not define God the way other religions do, but they definitely believe in a higher power.
  • Buddhism is more of a philosophy than a religion in its pure form. It has become blended with folk religions in some areas.The Eightfold path is largely a set of ethical instructions. Life is pain and recurs in cycles. Correct following of the Path will eventually allow you to break the cycle and escape into oblivion. A very appealing notion to some. +2
  • The Buddha himself was an agnostic. He said it's a waste of time to speculate about gods when there are more important things to do in life.

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