Similarities & Differences Between Hinduism & Buddhism
Hinduism and Buddhism have their similarities and differences. These similarities and differences are in all aspects of these religions. These aspects are their way of life, their origin, practicing their religion, and the main principles of the religions.
The origins of these two religions tie in closely. Both many Hindus and Buddhists say that Buddhism was an offshoot of Hinduism. The founder of Buddhism was Siddhertha Gautama .It was founded in 525 BC in India after Gautama was born in 563BC. Siddhertha had plenty of things, but happened to see a lot of suffering during his four trips to the city. Gautama took these trips at the age of 29. He went on a pilgrimage following 4 years of traveling, meditation, and spiritual searching, for 49 days he reached his goal. Siddhertha found the “true nature”. Gautama became known as Buddha, the awakened one.
Hinduism does not have one specific founder. There were many people and things that led to the religion. It began about 1800-1000BC in India.
Both Hinduism and Buddhism have principles and rules to follow. Hindus believe that there is a single, permanent spirit. This spirit is called Brahama. It’s believed that every soul of every animal is a part of this spirit. Other gods and goddesses are all varied forces of Brahama. They believe all life is sacred. Cows are especially sacred. They are thought of as a type of god. There are public facilities especially made for cows. Another important principle of Hinduism is reincarnation. Rebirth is the basic cycle of birth, life, and then death. A person’s soul can only be released from reincarnation when they have become united with Brahama. Another principle is Karma. Karma is the law that holds all people responsible for their actions in their past lives. The reward for a good life is reincarnation into a better life. Karma is what makes higher societies and lower societies. From this all people are born with a sacred duty. This is the principle that people can not be changed socially by becoming educated or wealthy. Moksha is the final stage in the search toward “salvation”. It is the final level where the path of right thinking, right action, or religious devotion is met.
Hindus have a guide to the classes of society called the Caste System. The top of the guide begins with the Brahmahs. These are priests and teachers. They are thought of as earthly gods. Second, there are the Kshatriyas, which are warriors and political leaders. Then the Vaisyas, the farmers and merchants. Followed by the Sudras, the laborers and servants. Lastly there are the Harijans, which are the “untouchables”, street people (beggars).
The Buddhist religion on the other hand, rejects many gods and the Caste system. They believe the priests have too many privileges. The final goals are similar on the other hand, they are a similar perfect state of understanding and breaking off the chain of reincarnation. The Buddhist religion is not considered forms of religious rituals, it’s considered a way of life. Buddha spent his life teaching people. He taught that people suffer because they are overly attached to their material possessions. He taught people that they must live by certain rules to escape from material objects and desire. If they did not, they would be stuck in a never-ending cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. The eventual goal is to reach the state of Nirvana, the ultimate state of insight, calmness, and happiness. For this to happen believers must follow 4 Truths. These 4 truths are:
1. Everything in life is suffering and sorrow.
2. Cause of suffering is people’s selfish desire for temporary pleasure.
3. Way to end all suffering is to end all desire.
4. To overcome desires and attain enlightenment must follow an eight-fold path called the Middle Way between desires and self-denial.
The eight-fold path includes the right views, resolve, speech, conduct, livelihood, effect, mindfulness, and concentration. Most followers of Buddha were poor and turned to these beliefs to turn them from a material life.
Both Buddhism and Hinduism are very similar to each other. They are almost the same religion other than a few differences in belief and practice. They are both incredible religions that truly look at the better things in