Comparison of Two Religions
January 30, 2014
Hinduism and Buddhism
Hinduism can be traced back to about 1500 BCE. The word Hindu is a geographical marker derived from the Sanskrit word for river, sindhu, where the Indus River acquired its name. There is no founder for Hinduism unlike Buddhism; it has no time or space of origin. However it was influenced by other cultures in which one of them is the oldest indigenous influence with symbols and deities to the Indus valley. This society is one of the oldest civilizations that date back to the third millennium B.C. This date places the religion a thousand years before the inscription of the Old Testament. There is a ...view middle of the document...
Just like the Buddha, some men renounced to their wealth to follow him. Anybody was welcome regardless of any status. Once welcome they had to follow strict rules like: not killing someone, not drinking alcohol, no sexual relations, no stealing and they could not say they had supernatural powers. Buddhism spread to northern and central India during its first century of existence.
Pilgrimage is a practice in Hinduism, where one goes to a holy place or sacred rivers as an opportunity for personal purification and spiritual elevation. Most of these holy places are located in different spots like mountains, where great natural beauty can be seen. One of these pilgrimage sites is Amarnath Cave located in the Himalayas of Kashmir with an altitude of 11,090 feet high.
Puja is a religious practice by Hinduism where Hindus preform a ritual in the morning after taking a bath but before eating or drinking. In this ritual Hindus can use anything that is considered divine where food or flowers can be offered or just simply lighting a candle. The item that is being used embodies the divine energy of the god and provides connection with them. This ritual can be performed individually or in groups, accompanied by prayers or observed in silence.
Festivals in Hinduism are combinations of religious ceremonies, prayers, eating, drinking or worship. One of these festivals is the Diwali; it takes place in October or November, where all classes of society participate. Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and good fortune is worship by honoring her with ceremonial lights. They commemorate the victory of Krishna over Narakasura who is the demon of hell with fireworks.
Buddhism also practices pilgrimage. One famous pilgrimage takes place in Japan on the islands of Shikoku. It is called the eighty-eight temples. It takes about a year to complete the full pilgrimage by those who need deep personal and spiritual need. Another popular pilgrimage in Japan is the thirty-three temples of Kannon, where families visit one of these temples on a weekend for several years collecting hand-drawn seals from each temple they visit.
Buddhism practices meditation. This is practiced in silence while keeping the body still and controlling one’s breathing. Meditation is also combined with recitation of chants. During the process, one’s hands can be positioned in various seals. Most of the time mediation is performed while sitting on the...