Buddhism, on the other hand, developed its equally complex belief and ritual system much later than Hinduism under its founder, Shattered Augusta (565-483 SC), who is otherwise known as the Buddha or Enlightened One. Both these religions originated in India. Shattered Augusta was a Hindu who found elements of the Hindu theology lacking and after years of searching for truth created the religion now known as Buddhism. Because of these basic similarities, the two religions have much in common, but in the same light they differ immensely.
As a result of their shared irritate, Hinduism and Buddhism both have numerous gods, temples and instructions for their faithful to follow certain paths in order to ultimately achieve Nirvana (the place where all the enlightened beings reside). However, according to Buddhist religious text, “He (Buddha) set himself forty-eight vows to fulfill, which, he proclaimed, would allow him to reach Nirvana. ” (Incarnate 98, “Imitable,”) Buddhism is a personal religion.
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Buddhists follow the instruction of one man who made strict rules and rituals for himself so that he may reach Nirvana. Because Buddhism is such a personal Journey, the importance of the concept of a god or group of gods in Buddhism is downplayed to such a degree that, in the eyes of some, it is not even a religion. Hindus, on the other hand, have hundreds of gods governing every different aspect of Hindu life. The three main gods in the Hindu Tritium are Vishnu, who is the Sustainer; Brahmas, who is the Creator; and Shiva, called the Destroyer.
While the Tritium are the most important gods in Hinduism, daily life for Hindus is greatly impacted by a great variety of rituals pertaining to lesser known gods, For example, any of these Hindu gods are associated with animals; therefore, Hindus feel that being a vegetarian, and protecting the sanctity of life in the creatures which surround them, is vital to their Journey to Nirvana. As a means of illustration, cows are considered sacred in Hinduism and are worshipped as the divine mother, making the eating beef taboo.
Hindu scriptures advocate the pursuit of many goals in one’s life including righteous living, wealth, prosperity, love and happiness. The ultimate goal is to achieve Nirvana. Following these steps and pleasing all these gods ensures ones ticket to achieving Nirvana. Buddhism, however, more closely emphasizes personal meditation and prayer over a pantheon of gods, public rituals and religious taboos. In Buddhism, one must understand the four noble truths; the truth of suffering, the truth of the origin of suffering, the truth of cessation, and the truth of the path.
These all follow the Eightfold path, a very austere way of life in which one must live in order to reach Nirvana. One can see then that while the goal of both religions is primarily the same, they go about achieving them in different ways. Both osseous but a Buddhist woman has more freedom than a Hindu woman possesses. The following Buddhist text written by the Dalai Lama (Ocean of Wisdom, p. 25) illustrate the fact that every sentient being in Buddhism is considered to be equal to each other and all have a chance to reach enlightenment. “All sentient beings are our fathers and mothers. ” ” Even someone who looks like a ruffian or a robber is still someone who has on his mind. ” “All mothers, all sentient beings. “) Buddhist females still face an uphill climb in their quest to achieve Nirvana due to traditional restudies toward women in society at large, but their equality within the religion itself is unquestioned. As a contrast, in Hinduism the place of women is an inferior one, which stems from the traditional, cultural, and social values regarding the roles of Asian women.
Although females can accumulate good karma, they have a harder time achieving enlightenment due to their social standing and their commitment to their family value. In Hinduism, the role of women is downgraded and no act is to be done according to her will. Hinduism insists that a woman must always defer to her Cubans; must always be cheerful and clever in the household business; must keep the furniture well cleaned; and, must be less concerned with her own Journey to Nirvana in order to always have a free hand to assist her husband and children in their lives.
She has to be cheerful and cannot get angry with the husband for doing anything. The woman must have only one husband, even if he dies before her. If a woman commits adultery, she must be burned to death and all property a couple may acquire belongs to the male. Therefore, though both these religions have extractions to women’s freedoms, a Buddhist female can do things more freely than a Hindu woman, who is very strictly repressed by ritual and tradition. Both religions believe that during life nonviolence is essential to reaching Nirvana.
Buddhists preach compassion, charity and nonviolence and while Hindus profess pacifism and aims, which is the avoidance of harm to people and animals, they still believe war is Justifiable in certain cases. They see it as their duty to fight in a Just war. Harming others is wrong but if the war will cause undo suffering to others, then violent acts re Justifiable. “There is no greater good for a warrior than to fight in a righteous war. ” (Baghdad-Gait, Gait, 2:31) Many Buddhist beliefs and goals are similar if not the same as Hindu beliefs and goals.
The concept in life that you should not act violently towards others is common to both religions, although they have some slight differences. The concept of suffering and reincarnation is common in both religions. In Buddhism there is the concept of two extremes, one devoted to pleasure and lust and one devoted to mortification. Both are considered profitless and therefore one would take the middle path, which leads to insight. This means that people should not seek Nirvana too hard but should not seek it too little either.
Hindus believe that life has no ultimate significance and is but a small part in a vast unending, and essentially meaningless cycle of life and death, and that everything has a soul or atman. Hindus believe in reincarnation and the transmigration of the soul and the concept of successive rebirths until one dwells in Brahmas forever after the quest for the realization of truth. “The cycle of rebirths, samara, is the very condition of all life. No existence escapes it, unless it gets to nirvana. ” dean-Claude Carrier, The Power of Buddhism, p. 89) This will eventually lead one to true happiness or salvation. Suffering (because of reincarnation) which is also taught in Buddhism. Hinduism and Buddhism have different speeds of expansion. Hinduism had no real expansion over the years and basically remained stable where it originated despite the influence of Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam. Hindus appreciated and were attracted by the stress on intricate worship, which in turn turned others away from Hinduism. Buddhist expansion on the other hand was massive, making a significant foothold in India.
Hundreds of monasteries sprang up and from these centers, and the message of the Buddha was spread throughout Asia. “Buddhism spread rapidly throughout the lands of its birth. ” (Groggier 98, “Buddhism”) Augusta was a great campaign manager for his beliefs as he avoided the elaborate ideals of the Pinheads. Because of the personal nature of the Buddhist religious Journey, and its lack of emphasis on ritual and public religious activity, any Hindus were converted easily. The acceptance of Buddhism by the great Sin emperor Shih Humanoid of China in 3 B.
C. Greatly promoted growth and spread Buddhism into Ceylon and parts of Southeast Asia, also making headway in Burma, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. By the sixth century, it spread to Nepal, Tibet, Mongolia, China, Korea and Japan. Buddhism one could say “sprouted” out of Hinduism. Hinduism remained the same for a long time, and maintained its influence and control in India, where it was created, until modern times; the influence of Buddhism, however, grew rapidly throughout a great many places in the world.