Christianity and Buddhism
Christianity originated during the 1st-century in Israel, starting with the birth of Jesus Christ, while Buddhism originated in the 6th-century India from the birth and life of Siddhartha, Buddha. While Buddhism and Christianity began with a single founder who sacrificed their lives for the suffering of humans, they did not share the same views on God. Christians put their faith in God while Buddhists ignored the widespread religious belief in a controlling higher power other religions adapted to.
Built on philosophies and the teachings of Buddha, Buddhists rely on one’s own desire and efforts to reach enlightenment. For Christians, they believe in a personal relationship with God. Born to a royal family approximately 2,500 years ago, Siddhartha Gautama grew up without knowing the harsh realities of the outside world his parents tried to shield him from (Usbourne). Confronted with experiencing the impermanence and suffering his people were exposed to at age 29, Siddhartha, a prince of the Sakyas, journeyed on his path of enlightenment and transformed into the Buddha, creator of Buddhism (Ravi). From this experience, it allowed him to share his own teachings towards his followers in the practice of Buddhism. However, the start of Christianity developed from the birth, life, death, and rebirth of Jesus Christ.
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Virgin Mary birthed Jesus into an environment where he did not experience such luxuries as Siddhartha had. Virgin Mary’s man in her life, Joseph, worked as a carpenter–nothing nearing the status of a great King. While Budha lived a part of his life in luxury to later find peace, Jesus Christ lived a lower-class life while still salvaging man-kind from its sinful lives. Both men sacrificed something of themselves in the pursuit of happiness for others, yet they lived their initial lives differently. In Buddha’s travels, he had no time to ponder the thought of something supernatural of higher power. The idea of God entertained other religions as a guide to explain some phenomenons, but Buddha’s purpose was to end suffering. Meanwhile, Christians strongly believed in a higher power, which they defined as God. As a monotheistic religion, God was the father, the son, and the holy spirit for them; they believed in no other spiritual beings but God. But with Buddhism, philosophies created reasonings to unknown ideas about the world. These fundamental ideas Buddhists follow the Four Noble Truths in pursuit of nirvana.
The Four Noble Truths begins with the belief of suffering being present. Buddhism was based on teachings and philosophies. It wasn’t until some time passed until Buddha’s teachings were written down. This was due to them teaching orally as texts were not big in Buddhism. The Tipitaka, also known as Pali Canon, consisted of Buddha’s saying, comments, and rules for monks while the Bible sets a _____ for what Christians believe in, teach, and confess. For Buddhists, their scriptures seem demanding, yet the wisdom embedded within their scriptures seek to be brought into light by interpretation. Like Buddha, Jesus did not write his own teachings down, and they would not be written down until many years after his death (Biography). Because of the inconsistency and gap of time, errors of those teachings from both religions potentially could have been misinterpreted.
Buddhists emphasize self-preservation, and that one must work for his own enlightenment. Buddhists follow their own path in order to reach nirvana through karma and enlightenment. Buddhists see their lives as suffering and it is their purpose in life to rid themselves of this unfortunate (REL). Meanwhile, Christians follow the words of the Bible and God’s ____ in order to reach either Heaven or the less desirable destination, Hell. The way a Christian lives their life determines the arrival at such places. God’s graces and reason help in the decision of the correct placement for Christians. Conclusion Buddhists live virtuous lives in spite of the nature of Samsara Identify the information you get and write what you’ve taken from that. Analyze- be more specific. Don’t be generic with your sentences.
- BBC. “The Four Noble Truths”. BBC. November 17, 2009. Accessed January 12th, 2019. http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/buddhism/beliefs/fournobletruths_1.shtml
- Meredith, Susana. The Usbourne Book of World Religions: Buddhism. (pdf). Accessed January 12th, 2019.externalfile:drive-5f25a651c497946c4480d5c202539493d91e614b /root/Judaism%20 (Usbourne)%20pp18-23.pdf
- Ravi, Anita. The Origin of World Religions. Big History Project. Accessed January 10th, 2019. externalfile:drive-5f25a651c497946c4480d5c202539493d91e614b/root/World%20religio ns%20origins%20(Big%20History).pdf
- Saint Mary’s Press. World Religions: A Voyage of Discovery. Comparing and Contrasting Buddhism with Christianity. Saint Mary’s Press 2015. https://www.smp.org/dynamicmedia/files/0 01804b64e6fa1 0761c88482ae 5a 4a1b/TX003835-1-comparison_article-chapter_04.pdf