Critical Thinking Assignment
Part I: What is Buddhism?
According to the reading and additional research “Buddhism” was founded by a royal prince Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha) “Awakened” or “Enlightened One” in 624 century before the birth of Christ in what is now part of Nepal. Some would say that Buddhism is better understood as an ethic and philosophy rather than a religion and follows concepts from meditation to The Four Nobel Truths and The Eightfold Noble Path. In all his eighty-four thousand teachings, Buddha Shakyamuni’s objective was to lead people to permanent freedom from suffering. He understood that temporary liberation from misery and hardship was not enough, he wanted to ...view middle of the document...
This is one of the reasons man is imprisoned in the cycle of reincarnation. The purpose is to “eliminate suffering by eliminating desire or craving that which is temporary.” (Weider & Gutierrez, 60) This can be accomplished by following The Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path, which lead to a state of total peace and nirvana. The Buddhist people believe we suffer because we strive to hold on to things we cannot change which will not give us lasting happiness in the end.
4. The Question of Morality: Morality is a center piece that is directly woven into the Buddhist teachings. In the book The Eightfold Nobel Path, The Way to the End of Suffering by Bhikkhu Bodhi it states that “The way to liberate oneself from suffering is by eliminating all desire.” These teachings connect to morality through the concepts of the right intentions, right effort, right speech, right action, and right livelihood. (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/bodhi/waytoend.html)
5. The Question of Destiny: The Buddhist People did not believe that their destiny was controlled by the Creator God but instead affirmed in a life force or energy power. Their own spiritual path, action and decisions they make for themselves will determine what kind of karma they will have. When human life goes through the cycle of reincarnation, it is karma that determines who we become when we are reborn.
Part II: Compare and Contrast of Buddhism with a Biblical Christian Worldview.
1. The Question of Origin: The Christian worldview differs significantly from the Buddhist worldview of origin. The Christian religion believes that everything in the world that is present was created in six days by God. This is directly supported in the Bible where it states “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). On the other hand, the Buddhist believe the world and life contained in it have no beginning or end. They do not believe in God or a supernatural power.
2. The Question of Identity: Christians trust that God created man, “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:27 NIV) Whereas Buddhism stresses the causal relationship underlying the universe which represents natural order and source of enlightenment.
3. The Question of Meaning/Purpose: The most important Christians...