Buddhism and Hinduismadmin / January 29, 2019
Both Hinduism and Buddhism religions share their origin from the Indian subcontinent. They are known to share long but rather strange and uneasy relationship in many ways. The Buddha was born in a Hindu family and many believe it gained huge number of followers since it released people from the oppression of Hindu caste system.
The religion brought on board salvation hope as well as freedom of preference in the society. Hinduism may not be entirely regarded as a religion but a collection of sectarian and religious associations united by some fundamentally comparable beliefs, origin, and custom of their descendants (Jayaram 1).
The Different Ways the Hindus and Buddhis Meditate
Meditation involves developing a faith in something else other than oneself. This means being able to give applause for little things and above all express gratitude for having been born as a human. Both religions meditate differently.
According to the Hinduism teachings, each and every living being is filled with an everlasting soul. They hold the belief that Brahma (the creator spirit) is intertwined with an individual’s soul.
Thus it is each individuals role to return the soul but this is not possible because of the sins and impurities one becomes exposed to once living in this world and since the process of becoming pure again is very difficult no one can accomplish the fete in one lifetime thus the soul is forced to live after life till the purity can be achieved and then the soul returns to the maker. Thus, one has to go through rebirths until fully cleansed.
Hinduism is a religion made of numerous gods and the followers are at liberty to choose among the many. In order to become a Hindu there are things you must believe in and promise to live by among them includes believing in karma and reincarnation.
The Hindu society is divided into castes and the different castes do not mingle. The divisions are largely exhibited by the belief in Karma and Dharma that expresses the idea that if someone is born into a specific caste they must stay there until death (White 1).
Meditation among the Hindus commonly known as the Yoga in Hindu is the path of salvation. Hindu meditation is a state of relaxed contemplation of the present moment it is the freedom from all thought. It is classified according to its focus.
Among the types of Hindu meditation are Vedanta and Raja Yoga. To cover one of the types, Verdanta means culmination of the knowledge and deals with reality nature while raja yoga is concerned with primarily cultivating the mind through meditation
This is a version of Hinduism and based on the four noble truths which make the foundation of the Buddhism as a religion. In order to escape reincarnation Buddhists believe it can be done by passing through the eight fold which says to practice moderation by having the right mind set, not lying nor insulting if these are practiced among others then one can reach the Brahma in one lifetime (White 1).
One is not a Buddhist until he has taken refuge in the triple gem. The triple gem in which one takes refuge in consists of getting refuge to the Buddha, refuge to Dharma, and refuge to Sangha. This is repeated twice or more. The going to take refuge in the triple Gems entails pure surrender of oneself, acceptance of discipleship among others.
Though surrender is delusional it is the hardest sacrifice which until made, enlightenment remains a dream (Yorke 8).
Then once a day a few minutes should be devoted to the compassionate meditation. This entails developing in the heart the feelings of love and kindness to oneself. This helps in keeping the follower within the religion framework. Before coming into meditation one has to clear the air by saying what it is not.
According to Buddhists the only person you surrender to is your meditation master. There are no prayers to God or anything you are your own except from the help of your teachers and fellow disciples. As research shows mindfulness is in the core of Buddhist meditation and it entails clear and single minded awareness of what happens to us.
Similarities in both Religions
The two traces their roots on the Indian soil. Furthermore, Buddhism was initiated by a Hindu and as a result they share origin. The two religions share karma. This is the belief in law of consequences. It simply states your actions revolve around you either as blessings of good deeds or curses of evil deeds.
They could take several lifetimes to be enacted depending on your actions while in this world. The revolution or the rebirth is either to reward or punish a person for his actions while he was in this world (Woinarowicz 1).
The two religions believe in the existence of several hells and heavens or higher and lower worlds (Anon 1). They hold the belief that one deeds determines how one will reincarnate after death
The two religions also believe in the existence of gods or deities. What really differ are the powers they place to these gods.
Both believe in certain spiritual practices like meditation concentration which helps them to try and discover their own selves and how they relate to their gods and themselves. In order to join the next world a believer in either of the two religions has to detach and forget everything about the worldly life in order to enter the spiritual life.
Contrasting the Two
Unlike Buddhism whose founder was a telepathist, Hinduism initiator was never a prophet. Hinduism believes in the worth and preeminence of the VEDAS (scripture) whereas the Buddhist does not believe in any religious scripture. In addition they (Buddhism) do not accept as true the idea of soul existence.
Hinduism recognizes that Buddha reincarnated from one of the religion’s gods (MAHAVISHNU) whereas Buddhists do not buy the idea that there could be a superior god fro their known (Buddha). Buddhists hold the view that the earth is a place of distress and believes that man is in the world with the sole aim of fighting the unhappiness whereas Hindus posit that there are four main objectives that man fights to accomplish in this world.
In Hinduism the four phases of life must be followed to the latter whereas there is no set condition in Buddhism. Buddhists stay in groups. Hinduism is basically a religion of individualism
Hinduism believes in Mayaism while Buddhists do not deny or support Mayaism which states that anything seen in this world is illusion. This dissimilar perception could mean no objective reality but subjective that is found in the perceiver mind but because everyone views the object differently then it qualifies not to be an illusion.
They argue if it was an illusion then the perception could be similar. The Maya nature is a practice in Hinduism but Buddhists do not hold any belief on the same. Dharma another aspect of Hinduism which is translated as obligation is another concept not shared by the two religions. Hindus must live by their castes while in Buddhism one can belong to any group just because you were born in an upper caste it does not mean you cannot intermingle with the people of the lower caste
The two religions are almost similar but there are differences in the attempt to make the world a better place; the Buddhists have beliefs going beyond and even contradicting those of the Hindus. Buddhism advocates equal love the populace and upholds the caste system, a thing that Hindus never practice.
Acceptance of god is another factor that differentiates the two religions. The Hindus have many gods including Brahman the super creator but Buddhists refute their existence. Not that Buddhists preach that there is no god rather they refute the need to search for one. They say one should concentrate in what you can know rather not on what you cannot know.
We can conclude that religion plays a vital role on how we behave and relate to one another. Thus we should always take the best in our religion and compromise what might not be ethical to others in order to avoid conflicts that may arise due to religion affiliation.
Anon. Buddhism and Hinduism. 2007.
Jayaram V. Hinduism and Buddhism. 2010.
White, Sharon. Hinduism. 2006.
Woinarowicz. Jessica. The use of Hinduism and Buddhism. 2007
York. G. J. Buddhist meditation. 1968.