11 Answers

  1. Buddhism is a nontheistic religious teaching. Buddhism conventionally unites many schools that differ greatly in their opinions on matters of faith and the structure of the world. The doctrine has existed for about 2500 years and during this time has been developed and commented on by many people.

    In Buddhism, there is no belief in a creator God, God as an unchanging, permanent person. Buddhism absorbed various ideas from other religions: Jainism, Vaishnavism, Brahmanism, Lamaism, bon, which was reflected in the different practices and traditions of different schools. Therefore, we cannot say that Buddhism is a single religion or a single philosophy. This concept is a generalization of completely different religions and philosophical traditions. Common to all schools of thought are the three foundations: the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha. A Buddha is not a deity, but a respected person who has unlocked the potential of freedom of mind. The Buddha shared with others a way to liberate the mind, which became the basis of the teaching: dharma. For a long time, the dharma was passed down from teacher to student through oral narration, but there were no texts until later the Pali canon was compiled — the written basis of teaching recognized by most schools. The Buddha gathered a community of human disciples, the sangha. The Buddha has repeatedly pointed out the importance of the sangha for proper practice.

    There is a belief in Buddhism. Faith in a free mind. In some (but not all)cases This is the belief in the infinity of the mind and its reincarnation in various forms. In Buddhism, there is a teaching called dharma. In Buddhism, there is a community-the sangha. Therefore, Buddhism can be considered a religion. Buddhist teaching has many ideas about the structure of reality, so it can be considered a philosophy. But the main thing in Buddhism is the ability to use these teachings to get rid of your problems.

  2. Buddhism is very different! Madhyamika is a very complex philosophy, and being born in the Pure Lands of Amitabha Buddha after death is a true Mahayana faith

  3. Philosophy and religion are repetitions of each other. Buddhism regulates the world and man's place in it. Atheism, deism, and theism are equally valid. The world cannot be predictable.

  4. And not religion or philosophy, but psychological practice, i.e. ordinary psychology.

    Yoga is also a psychological practice, but no one calls yoga a religion.

  5. First of all, what do you mean by religion ? institute of society: in both closed and open forms, or faith in the One, knowledge of the ways to reach the root of existence. Self-knowledge (knowledge of one's original nature) is faith or religion that's how your question sounds to me.Religion includes both a philosophical system and a community group, faith can be individual (spontaneous insight), but it can also turn into a search for like-minded people…

  6. To begin with, I will quote an excerpt from Yuval Harari's book ” Sapiens. A Brief History of Humanity” to understand what religion is:

    Religion is a system of human norms and values based on the belief in a higher, superhuman order.Let us emphasize two essential points.

    1. Religion presupposes a superhuman order that is not established by whim or even universal consent. Football is not a religion. Although it has rules, rituals, funny superstitions, but everyone knows that people invented football themselves, and FIFA can at any time decide to expand the goal or change the offside rules.

    2. On the basis of this higher, superhuman order, religion establishes unconditional values and norms. In the West, to this day, many people believe in ghosts, fairies, and reincarnation, but these superstitions do not follow any rules of morality and behavior, which means that they do not add up to a religion.

    In fact, not all religions realize their potential and strengthen the legitimacy of social and political structures. In order to unite large territories with a heterogeneous population under its auspices, a religion must meet two more criteria. First, it must offer a “universal” superhuman order that is true for all and always. Second, it should strive to communicate its truths to everyone. In other words, the unifying religion should be universal and missionary.

    The world's most famous religions — such as Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism-combine the attributes of universality and missionary work. As a result, people tend to think that these are all religions, but in fact most ancient beliefs were exclusive and local. People worshipped local gods and did not set themselves the goal of converting the entire human race. As far as we know, universal missionary religions only began to appear around the turn of our era. The emergence of universal religions is one of the biggest revolutions and a key factor — along with money and empires-in uniting humanity.

    So. Religion should have a set of rules based on the belief in superhuman strength. What does Buddhism have in common with this?

    (I will write in a simplified way)

    The four noble truths (Life is suffering, the Cause of suffering is aspiration, Suffering can be stopped, the Eightfold Path is the way to get rid of suffering), the Three qualities of life (everything in life is impermanent, so there is nothing integral, and this causes suffering, and the lack of constancy and integrity leads to the absence of entities that can be considered unique and permanent, such as the soul in Christianity) and Samsara – the cycle of rebirth based on the inability to get rid of suffering. This is a superhuman order.

    The Eightfold Path I have already mentioned is also a set of rules that must be followed to achieve nibbana (nirvana).

    Therefore, Buddhism has the necessary characteristics of a religion-the presence of superhuman strength that determines behavior, and the rules based on it (for personal gain – in this case, to get rid of suffering).

    And this is not counting the fact that Buddhist scriptures also mention gods, spirits, and so on as elements of reality.

    Based on all of the above, we can conclude that Buddhism is a religion.

  7. It depends on what you mean when you say that word.

    1. There is a method, the teaching of Gotama, in general, it is about complex work on yourself: thought, goals, behavior. These are fairly proven working methods. �What is called the “eight-lane road”: совершенствование
      improving attitudes, motivation, language, actions, lifestyle, effort, attention, and самооб self-control. In this direction, no “ism” is impossible, since the teaching presupposes its own actions and its own attitude to life. The teaching does not require “joining a religion” or “renouncing your religion.” It offers help in your quest for awareness, truth, and liberation from the bad. And a particular teacher or center, like a music school, may require certain conditions to be met (well, don't drink vodka in piano class)�

    2. There is Buddhism as a tradition that has developed on a historical basis, not a religion, but a movement, people who identify themselves as followers of the Buddha, seriously developing their teachings and methods strictly within the framework of a given discourse. It was they who for the most part developed “philosophy” and all the known formal trends. We do not know how much this corresponds to the vision of the Buddha himself, but there are also faithful students of Marx or Freud who develop strictly within the framework of their given language, “Marxists” and “Freudists”. On the other hand, “dharma” is exactly “physics”, not “Einsteinism”. Dharma and Buddhism are disparate concepts. The Buddha taught dharma, not Buddhism. Buddhism is a social phenomenon, a group of individuals. But it is not for us to judge people, it is their choice, and, in any case, their choice is a blessing for us, at least they were the ones who preserved and collected all the Buddhist literature for the first 400 or even more years. Reinterpreted, searched for explanations, searched for retellings, translated, commented. This is a huge amount of work. And to meet such a real Buddhist among the “Buddhists” is a great luck and rarity.

    3. There is also a religion: “anthropological Buddhism”: neo-Buddhism, or folk Buddhism, as it is called-paintings, statues, temples, incense, prayers, karmic rituals, paraphernalia, hierarchies embedded in the state + all the familiar popular images of mass culture, sweet Bertolucci with cream. Usually this phenomenon is called Buddhism, films are made about it and books are written about it, and these are official religions in some countries and on the Internet. But it certainly has nothing to do with Gotama, his teaching, his character, his desire. I can't even begin to guess Gotama's reaction, if he were here, to this phenomenon, to which his name is attached :). In fact, it is a mixture of Brahmanism, Hinduism in the most primitive, childish sense, Greek philosophical stoicism and eroticism, political influences and royalist ideology, primitive Eastern mysticism and post-Christian missionary work. This is just a compote of stereotypes designed to justify suffering and injustice, opium for society, romantic charm and affection, and not the teachings of the Buddhas. Yes, this is what is commonly called Buddhism, but it is not a philosophy, of course, and certainly not a practical psychology of mindfulness and liberation.

    4. After all, there is a real, unidentifiable Buddhist culture where you will not find pictures of the Buddha, lotuses, the words “nirvana-enlightenment-karma-meditation”, but you will find a deep reflection of the meaning or values of the dharma. Without even thinking about Buddhism. Post-impressionist works, phenomenology, cognitive studies, meaningful poetry – dharma is everywhere, everything has been imbued with it for the last 200-300 years, or even a couple of thousand years.

    5. There is a natural desire of the mind to be clear, to be better, to be free, to be at peace with itself. Dharma is in every breath, in every step, in every encounter with reality. And everyone, even the most confused person, feels at least sometimes this present. When suddenly an invisible weight is lifted, when the eye is cleared.

  8. Buddhism is both a religion and a philosophy. As it was wisely said, both are correct. And we argue all the time whether Buddhism is a religion or a philosophy.

  9. Buddhism is not homogeneous.
    There is Buddhism as a religion (and there are about a billion Buddhist believers on our planet), but there is also Buddhism as a philosophy.
    And, what is characteristic, they do not contradict each other, as a poet the same person can be both a believing Buddhist and a Buddhist-philosopher. Or maybe not.
    In nature, there are citizens who, being Buddhist philosophers, are not Buddhist believers.

  10. Buddhism is dedicated to the study of the workings of consciousness.

    this is more of a philosophy than a religion, as they do not 'believe', but practice exercises for consciousness.



  11. The answer to this question depends only on how to define the concepts of “religion “and” philosophy ” – and, by and large, will not give you any information about Buddhism itself. But in any case-no matter what understanding of “religion” or” philosophy ” may be guided – it is worth understanding that their opposition does not always make sense: with some definitions, it turns out that Buddhism is both a philosophy and a religion, and in some cases neither.

    This idea may seem strange, but there are no “correct” definitions of words (any dictionary will only show how this word was used most often in the past, and not how this word should be used). Most concepts do not have a well-defined scope, and the boundaries between them are not strict and clear. Actually, the example of Buddhism clearly shows this: for some people it is more like a religion, for some it is a “life philosophy”, for some people it is neither, and for some people it is both a religion, a philosophy, and a way of life.

Leave a Reply