Jump to content
Join the Unexplained Mysteries community today! It's free and setting up an account only takes a moment.
- Sign In or Create Account -

What comparisons can be made between Christianity and Buddhism did one influence the other?


Manwon Lender
 Share

Recommended Posts

The Buddha was born approximately 500 years before the birth of Jesus Christ so there is no way they could have ever met. However, by the time Jesus came of age and started the Christian religion, Buddhas teaching had reached across the Middle East and into most of Asia. Buddhism is one of the oldest spiritual philosophies or religions still being practiced today as a main stream form of spirituality. The most obvious difference between, Buddhism and Christianity is that Buddhism is a nontheistic religion or philosophy, that does not believe in a supreme creator being or a God. Christianity is a monotheistic religion and believes that Christ Is the Son Of The Father Who is God. 

Could Buddhism have influenced others religious practices?

What are the major similarities and differences between Buddhism Christianity?

Edited by Manwon Lender
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Manwon Lender said:

The Buddha was born approximately 500 years before the birth of Jesus Christ so there is no way they could have ever met. However, by the time Jesus came of age and started the Christian religion, Buddhas teaching had reached across the Middle East and into most of Asia. Buddhism is one of the oldest spiritual philosophies or religions still being practiced today as a main stream form of spirituality. The most obvious difference between, Buddhism and Christianity is that Buddhism is a nontheistic religion or philosophy, that does not believe in a supreme creator being or a God. Christianity is a monotheistic religion and believes that Christ Is the Son Of The Father Who is God. 

Could Buddhism have influenced others religious practices?

What are the major similarities and differences between Buddhism Christianity?

As with any religions there are many possibilities.

Two are 

Human psychological needs are common to all humans. Thus we construct  religions to meet those needs meaning that  all religions have some similarities The more two groups have similar needs the closer their religions will be  ie urban groups will have a different religion to hunter gatherers 

Second; perhaps  many religions stem from  one source ie a human's contact with the cosmic consciousness or "god" 

while it is commonly believed that Buddhism is nontheistic that isn't strictly/completely  true 

quote

Buddhism is commonly distinguished on doctrinal grounds from monotheistic and polytheistic religions by the fact that it refutes the existence of a divine Creator, and indeed there is ample textual evidence in early Buddhist, Mahayana, and Vajrayana treatises to support this claim.' However, a careful analysis of Vajrayana Buddhist cosmogony, specifically as presented in the Atiyoga tradition of Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, which presents itself as the culmination of all Buddhist teachings, reveals a theory of a transcendent ground of being and a process of creation that bear remarkable similarities with views presented in Vedanta and Neoplatonic Western Christian theories of creation. In the following paper I shall present this Vajrayana Buddhist theory in terms of its images of space and light in the creation of the universe, and I shall conclude with a reappraisal of the non-theistic status of Buddhism as a whole.

.................................................

Conclusion

While Buddhism is deemed nontheistic, the Vedas are regarded as polytheistic, and the Bible is monotheistic, we have seen that the cosmogonies of VajrayÛna Buddhism, VedÛnta, and Neoplatonie Christianity have so much in common that they could almost be regarded as varying interpretations of a single theory. Moreover, the commonality does not end there, for in the Near East, the writings of Plotinus (205-270) also influenced Islamic and Jewish theories of creation. This apparent unity could be attributed to mere coincidence, or to the historical propagation of a single, speculative, metaphysical theory throughout south Asia and the Near East. For example, the Upanisads may well have influenced the writings of early MahÛyÛna thinkers in India and they could also have made their way to the Near East, where they might have inspired the writings of Plotinus. On the other hand, Plotinus declared that his theories were based on his own experiential insights, and similar claims have been made by many Buddhist and Vedantin contemplatives. If these cosmogonies are indeed based upon valid introspective knowledge, then there may some plausibility to the claims of many contemplatives throughout the world that introspective inquiry can lead to knowledge, not only of the ultimate ground of being, but of the fundamental laws of nature as well.17

https://www.shambhala.com/snowlion_articles/is-buddhism-really-nontheistic/

Personally Ive never seen fundamental differences between  the two  or had any difficulty reconciling a life built on both

IMO the y are two  different revelations of the same  truth eg

 

quote

  The world that we as human beings experience, however, is not the only world, for there are other worlds in addition to our own2; but all worlds are said to be unreal and insubstantial like a bubble and a mirage.3 As for the origination of the six modes of consciousness by which human beings experience our world, the Buddha likened such origination to the production of fire by rubbing a fire-stick. As Peter Harvey points out, this Buddhist theory, like that of the Upanishads, takes for granted the existence of a latent fire element that is present in fuel, which becomes manifest when the fuel is set aflame.4 This would imply that specific forms of consciousness likewise emerge from a latent mode of consciousness when the appropriate conditions are met, and that underlying consciousness is denoted in Pali with the term bhavanga, which can be translated as the ground of becoming.5

 Thus, since the manifold worlds experienced by sentient beings are asserted in Buddhism to be produced by the karma of sentient beings, it follows that the bhavanga must be the ground from which arise all karma, all the worlds formed by karma, and all states of consciousness by which these worlds are known. Moreover, the nature of this ground of becoming is said to be loving kindness, and it is the source of sentient beings' incentive to meditatively develop their minds in the pursuit of nirvana When final liberation is achieved, one comes to experientially realize the nature of the bhavanga, which then retains its integrity and is no longer prone to obscuration by defilements.8

 

While the most common metaphor for the bhavanga and the tathÛgatagarbha is that of radiant light, The Vajra Heart Tantra adds to this the central metaphor of space. According to this cosmogony, the essential nature of the whole of samsÛra and nirvÛna is the absolute space of the tathÛgatagarbha, but this space is not to be confused with a mere absence of matter. Rather, this absolute space (dhatu) is imbued with all the infinite knowledge, compassion, and power, and enlightened activities of the Buddha. Moreover, this luminous space is that which causes the phenomenal world to appear, and it is none other than the nature of one's own mind, which by nature is clear light (p. 133). Samantabhadra distinguishes five types of primordial wisdom implicit within the natural buddha of awareness (p. 120):

sound familiar?

It is actually my own experience with the cosmic consciousness,   and it is very similar to the creation story of the bible, and the nature of god (light, love, knowledge, wisdom, power, compassion etc. )

 

Parallels with Polytheistic and Monotheistic Cosmogonies

While the nontheism of Buddhism is often set in stark contrast to the polytheism of the Vedas, the tradition of Vedanta, meaning the culmination of the Vedas, presents a cosmogony strikingly similar to the preceding Atiyoga account. According to Vedanta theory, the universe is created through a series of illusory manifestations of Brahman, who alone is ultimately real and is identical with the real nature (atman) of every sentient being.12 The nature of Brahman is pure consciousness, beyond all conceptual distinctions such as subject and object, and its differentiation into individual animate and inanimate beings is only by way of appearances. Drawing on an analogy that is shared with the Atiyoga tradition illustrating the relation between the dharmakaya and the minds of individuals sentient beings, the Vedantin philosopher Sarikara likens Brahman to space, which is single and continuous, while each individual (jiva) is likened to the space confined inside a pot. In this metaphor, the space of Brahman can be apparently enclosed within the pot of each individual without affecting the transcendent unity of Brahman. But such differentiation, he adds, is merely the result of our failure to discriminate the Ûtman from its adjuncts such as the body, senses, and so on. Each individual is a mere appearance or reflection of the transcendent Self, or atman, like the reflection of the sun in rippling water. Although the unity of Brahman and the atman has never been different from the universe, defects are perceived in the phenomenal world due to defilements in the minds of individuals. Thus, in order to see reality as it is, the mind, with all its afflictions, conceptual constructs, and tendencies of reification, must be transcended.

The second half of this was revealed to me, by enlightenment from  the cosmic consciousness, when i was about 13,  so that it was quite, clear, simple and obvious to me.

To put it in the simplest terms  

I am the universe and the universe is me.

Nothing is real ie fear anger hate love etc are not real, as independent entities , yet   all are real  as constructs of our mind  Thus we can choose to accept or reject ANY construct,  because every one of them comes from  within us, and is only existing because we constructed and maintained it  

Ultimately, detachment is learning to let go of the constructs which are negative and harmful, and to build only those which empower and strengthen us,  making us wiser, more perceptive,  and more complete. 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Mr Walker
  • Confused 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

21 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

As with any religions there are many possibilities.

Two are 

Human psychological needs are common to all humans. Thus we construct  religions to meet those needs meaning that  all religions have some similarities The more two groups have similar needs the closer their religions will be  ie urban groups will have a different religion to hunter gatherers 

Second; perhaps  many religions stem from  one source ie a human's contact with the cosmic consciousness or "god" 

while it is commonly believed that Buddhism is nontheistic that isn't strictly/completely  true 

quote

Buddhism is commonly distinguished on doctrinal grounds from monotheistic and polytheistic religions by the fact that it refutes the existence of a divine Creator, and indeed there is ample textual evidence in early Buddhist, Mahayana, and Vajrayana treatises to support this claim.' However, a careful analysis of Vajrayana Buddhist cosmogony, specifically as presented in the Atiyoga tradition of Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, which presents itself as the culmination of all Buddhist teachings, reveals a theory of a transcendent ground of being and a process of creation that bear remarkable similarities with views presented in Vedanta and Neoplatonic Western Christian theories of creation. In the following paper I shall present this Vajrayana Buddhist theory in terms of its images of space and light in the creation of the universe, and I shall conclude with a reappraisal of the non-theistic status of Buddhism as a whole.

.................................................

Conclusion

While Buddhism is deemed nontheistic, the Vedas are regarded as polytheistic, and the Bible is monotheistic, we have seen that the cosmogonies of VajrayÛna Buddhism, VedÛnta, and Neoplatonie Christianity have so much in common that they could almost be regarded as varying interpretations of a single theory. Moreover, the commonality does not end there, for in the Near East, the writings of Plotinus (205-270) also influenced Islamic and Jewish theories of creation. This apparent unity could be attributed to mere coincidence, or to the historical propagation of a single, speculative, metaphysical theory throughout south Asia and the Near East. For example, the Upanisads may well have influenced the writings of early MahÛyÛna thinkers in India and they could also have made their way to the Near East, where they might have inspired the writings of Plotinus. On the other hand, Plotinus declared that his theories were based on his own experiential insights, and similar claims have been made by many Buddhist and Vedantin contemplatives. If these cosmogonies are indeed based upon valid introspective knowledge, then there may some plausibility to the claims of many contemplatives throughout the world that introspective inquiry can lead to knowledge, not only of the ultimate ground of being, but of the fundamental laws of nature as well.17

https://www.shambhala.com/snowlion_articles/is-buddhism-really-nontheistic/

Personally Ive never seen fundamental differences between  the two  or had any difficulty reconciling a life built on both

IMO the y are two  different revelations of the same  truth eg

 

quote

  The world that we as human beings experience, however, is not the only world, for there are other worlds in addition to our own2; but all worlds are said to be unreal and insubstantial like a bubble and a mirage.3 As for the origination of the six modes of consciousness by which human beings experience our world, the Buddha likened such origination to the production of fire by rubbing a fire-stick. As Peter Harvey points out, this Buddhist theory, like that of the Upanishads, takes for granted the existence of a latent fire element that is present in fuel, which becomes manifest when the fuel is set aflame.4 This would imply that specific forms of consciousness likewise emerge from a latent mode of consciousness when the appropriate conditions are met, and that underlying consciousness is denoted in Pali with the term bhavanga, which can be translated as the ground of becoming.5

 Thus, since the manifold worlds experienced by sentient beings are asserted in Buddhism to be produced by the karma of sentient beings, it follows that the bhavanga must be the ground from which arise all karma, all the worlds formed by karma, and all states of consciousness by which these worlds are known. Moreover, the nature of this ground of becoming is said to be loving kindness, and it is the source of sentient beings' incentive to meditatively develop their minds in the pursuit of nirvana When final liberation is achieved, one comes to experientially realize the nature of the bhavanga, which then retains its integrity and is no longer prone to obscuration by defilements.8

 

While the most common metaphor for the bhavanga and the tathÛgatagarbha is that of radiant light, The Vajra Heart Tantra adds to this the central metaphor of space. According to this cosmogony, the essential nature of the whole of samsÛra and nirvÛna is the absolute space of the tathÛgatagarbha, but this space is not to be confused with a mere absence of matter. Rather, this absolute space (dhatu) is imbued with all the infinite knowledge, compassion, and power, and enlightened activities of the Buddha. Moreover, this luminous space is that which causes the phenomenal world to appear, and it is none other than the nature of one's own mind, which by nature is clear light (p. 133). Samantabhadra distinguishes five types of primordial wisdom implicit within the natural buddha of awareness (p. 120):

sound familiar?

It is actually my own experience with the cosmic consciousness,   and it is very similar to the creation story of the bible, and the nature of god (light, love, knowledge, wisdom, power, compassion etc. )

 

 

 

 

There was no need to cut and paste so much information that one Buddhist Sect overlaps another, it only serves to confuse those who have little understanding of the subject. This tells me your knowledge is limited to Wikileaks because that is where this information comes from. To be honest I was hoping for some historical evidence and your post answers none of the questions clearly. 

For instance since Buddhism is approximately 500 years older than Christianity is it possible that when Christianity began that there were already those practicing Buddhism in Judaea. In addition early Depictions of Jesus have a very similar look to depictions of Buddha that were produced before the birth of Christ. 
 

 

793F2587-DB3B-432B-9D00-3E5ED7DA470C.jpeg

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

35 minutes ago, Manwon Lender said:

There was no need to cut and paste so much information that one Buddhist Sect overlaps another, it only serves to confuse those who have little understanding of the subject. This tells me your knowledge is limited to Wikileaks because that is where this information comes from. To be honest I was hoping for some historical evidence and your post answers none of the questions clearly. 

For instance since Buddhism is approximately 500 years older than Christianity is it possible that when Christianity began that there were already those practicing Buddhism in Judaea. In addition early Depictions of Jesus have a very similar look to depictions of Buddha that were produced before the birth of Christ. 
 

 

793F2587-DB3B-432B-9D00-3E5ED7DA470C.jpeg

lol That was for you, to answer your question specifically ie that Buddhism is actually quite similar to other faiths/ beliefs and  does include the existence of a god albeit a god of a different  form/nature to the Christian one 

I guessed you would be familiar enough to understand the contents  

To me its not a lot of quoted material.

i read the entire article in a minute or two, then selected parts that made my point 

  If you  read the whole source that is fine, but few people do 

The amount I quoted was probably the minimum I could quote to make my points. 

It always amuses me when people complain about too much information. IMO there can be no such thing. 

Ps I am very familiar with the many forms of Buddhism, as I am with the many forms of Christianity,  Islam and many other faiths. I taught these to students for many years.   In part I live by and practice the tenets of Buddhism, as i do those of Judaism, Christianity  Jainism  and other beliefs 

However i thought this was an interesting article which went directly to your OP  

Did you check the source? No it is not wiki.  (Of any kind)  its from  Shambhala publications 

a little background on the author 

 

Alan discontinued his university studies in ecology and philosophy in 1971 and moved to Dharamsala, India to study Tibetan Buddhism, medicine, and language. He was ordained by H.H. the Dalai Lama two years later, and over the course of fourteen years as a monk, he studied with and translated for many of the generation’s greatest lamas, including the Dalai Lama. In 1984, he resumed his Western education at Amherst College, where he studied physics and the philosophy of science. He then applied that background to his PhD research at Stanford on the interface between Buddhism and Western science and philosophy, with a focus on the contemplative cultivation of attention, mindfulness, and introspection.

https://www.alanwallace.org/

ps I am a believer in the theory of multiple independent   discoveries in science and religion rather than a linear progression of discoveries which are all linked  

Ie while there are evolutions of technologies and beliefs, identical discoveries arose independently across the globe (see my comment on why this is so in my first post  Human physical and psychological needs are always similar, and thus we find similar solutions, like fire,  stone tools,  and faiths    The halo, sun/moon, inner light expressed as a disc around the head (where our identity resides ) is quite common. 

 The Greek halos means "ring of light around the sun or moon."

 

 

Edited by Mr Walker
  • Like 1
  • Confused 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 The Tao Teh Ching was written 600 B.C. The things Jesus said in the Gospel are not quite original, but the mindset of the prophets in B.C. time. Almost all the prophets in Israel who preceded Jesus were hated and hunted by the kings or the people. Jesus recompiled their new motto and told it again. Things like, "Turn the other cheek instead of taking an eye for eye," were not original to Jesus, but were already being taught to Israel by the prophets well before his time. 

Elijah is born at 900 B.C. The Major Prophets (Isaiah, Ezekiel and Jeremiah) and the Minor Prophets ranged in dates from about 800 B.C. to 400 B.C.

Edited by The_Phantom_Stranger
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

lol That was for you, to answer your question specifically ie that Buddhism is actually quite similar to other faiths/ beliefs and  does include the existence of a god albeit a god of a different  form/nature to the Christian one 

I guessed you would be familiar enough to understand the contents  

To me its not a lot of quoted material.

i read the entire article in a minute or two, then selected parts that made my point 

  If you  read the whole source that is fine, but few people do 

The amount I quoted was probably the minimum I could quote to make my points. 

It always amuses me when people complain about too much information. IMO there can be no such thing. 

Ps I am very familiar with the many forms of Buddhism, as I am with the many forms of Christianity,  Islam and many other faiths. I taught these to students for many years.   In part I live by and practice the tenets of Buddhism, as i do those of Judaism, Christianity  Jainism  and other beliefs 

However i thought this was an interesting article which went directly to your OP  

Did you check the source? No it is not wiki.  (Of any kind)  its from  Shambhala publications 

a little background on the author 

 

Alan discontinued his university studies in ecology and philosophy in 1971 and moved to Dharamsala, India to study Tibetan Buddhism, medicine, and language. He was ordained by H.H. the Dalai Lama two years later, and over the course of fourteen years as a monk, he studied with and translated for many of the generation’s greatest lamas, including the Dalai Lama. In 1984, he resumed his Western education at Amherst College, where he studied physics and the philosophy of science. He then applied that background to his PhD research at Stanford on the interface between Buddhism and Western science and philosophy, with a focus on the contemplative cultivation of attention, mindfulness, and introspection.

https://www.alanwallace.org/

ps I am a believer in the theory of multiple independent   discoveries in science and religion rather than a linear progression of discoveries which are all linked  

Ie while there are evolutions of technologies and beliefs, identical discoveries arose independently across the globe (see my comment on why this is so in my first post  Human physical and psychological needs are always similar, and thus we find similar solutions, like fire,  stone tools,  and faiths    The halo, sun/moon, inner light expressed as a disc around the head (where our identity resides ) is quite common. 

 The Greek halos means "ring of light around the sun or moon."

 

 

It’s sad that you find my response amusing because it’s not amusing at all. It’s does prove one thing though that your knowledge of Buddhism is confined to what you are able to cut and past. Now your knowledge of Christianity I am unable to comment on, because my knowledge is limited concerning Christian Biblical Teachings. 

More cut and paste no original thought nothing generated by that personal process you could offer if you had a working knowledge of Buddhist Scripture. Please stick to the OP and thread title thank you.:yes:
 

 

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

38 minutes ago, The_Phantom_Stranger said:

 The Tao Teh Ching was written 600 B.C. The things Jesus said in the Gospel are not quite original, but the mindset of the prophets in B.C. time. Almost all the prophets in Israel who preceded Jesus were hated and hunted by the kings or the people. Jesus recompiled their new motto and told it again. Things like, "Turn the other cheek instead of taking an eye for eye," were not original to Jesus, but were already being taught to Israel by the prophets well before his time. 

Elijah is born at 900 B.C. The Major Prophets (Isaiah, Ezekiel and Jeremiah) and the Minor Prophets ranged in dates from about 800 B.C. to 400 B.C.

What does this have to do with the topic of thread?

I noticed you mentioned the Tao Teh Ching, let me be clear Taoism and Buddhism came from two different masters, there is no known influence between them to my knowledge. 

Please stuck to the threads title and the OP, this thread is a comparison between Buddhist and Christian practices.

Thanks

Edited by Manwon Lender
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Manwon Lender said:

What does this have to do with the topic of thread?

I noticed you mentioned the Tao Teh Ching, let me be clear Taoism and Buddhism came from two different masters, there is no known influence between them to my knowledge. 

Please stuck to the threads title and the OP, this thread is a comparison between Buddhist and Christian practices.

Thanks

The point I'm trying to make is that Christianity predates Buddhism because the older prophets who influenced Christ were before 500 B.C by 300 years. There appears to be a massive spiritual awakening at this time in more than one place around the world. The Greeks were also having it with Plato, Socrates and Aristotle. The Greeks were trading with the far East at this time and also Israel. Elijah himself was most likely Greek. The early Gospel was written in Greek. It might be the father of all these religions by the God Dionysus. Krishna predates Buddha and would have been some distinction of Christ who he would have known about. If the translations of the Bhagavad-gita are accurate and unbiased, then the similarities to it and the New Testament cannot be denied.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@Manwon Lender

That's a deep question, and not anything I've studied much. But maybe here's a lead you can think about.

Gospel Jesus's main influence is far and away the Jewish scriptures. Gospel Jesus is the only one we know anything about, so whether any of this is truly historical, who knows? Anyway, Gospel Jesus (and I'll just write "Jesus" for the rest of the post) is an itinerant rabbi, so of course he quotes, paraphrases and interprets Jewish scripture.

Stay with me for a bit. Those Jewish scriptures show a lot of influence from Greek culture, hence "Hellenized Judaism." In Jesus's own time, the occupiers of Judea were imperial Roman (and the local rulers of neighboring Jewish areas were Roman clients). Imperial Roman culture was heavily Greek-influenced.

One of the roots of Greek philosophy is Heraclitus (~ 500 BCE ... just about the time estimated for Gautama). His parents were nobles, possibly (Persian client) royalty, but Heraclitus retired from public life to pursue philosophy (much like the origin story of Gautama). He wrote one book, which survives only in quotations from it by later philophers, especially Greeks, including Plato, student of Socrates and teacher of Aristotle.

Among Heraclitus's teachings is insistence on the impermanence of all things (the familiar saying about being unable to step into the same river twice is his). There are also sayings of his that seem to have moved from him through Jewish prophets onto the lips of Jesus (e.g., a version of "hearing, they do not understand").

While nobody could rule out some direct Buddhist missionary contact (the Silk Road was in operation in Imperial times), there does seem to have been a sharing or simultaneous invention of ideas back in Buddhist origin times throughout different parts of the Indo-European world. Heraclitus's portion of those ideas made their way into Greek philosophy, and then from Aristotle to Alexander, and through Alexander's conquests into a wide terriitory, all the way back to India again.

It's a half-baked idea, I acknowledge, but the ingredients seem savory. Not all of Heraclitus's ideas are "Buddhist," but see if any of them ring a bell for you:

https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/heraclitus/

Good thread topic, BTW.

 

  • Like 5
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Manwon Lender said:

The Buddha was born approximately 500 years before the birth of Jesus Christ so there is no way they could have ever met. However, by the time Jesus came of age and started the Christian religion, Buddhas teaching had reached across the Middle East and into most of Asia. Buddhism is one of the oldest spiritual philosophies or religions still being practiced today as a main stream form of spirituality. The most obvious difference between, Buddhism and Christianity is that Buddhism is a nontheistic religion or philosophy, that does not believe in a supreme creator being or a God. Christianity is a monotheistic religion and believes that Christ Is the Son Of The Father Who is God. 

Could Buddhism have influenced others religious practices?

What are the major similarities and differences between Buddhism Christianity?

Buddha-nature.

Christ consciousness.

There is no difference.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, Crazy Horse said:

Buddha-nature.

Christ consciousness.

There is no difference.

Thanks that’s very helpful.:unsure:

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, eight bits said:

@Manwon Lender

That's a deep question, and not anything I've studied much. But maybe here's a lead you can think about.

Gospel Jesus's main influence is far and away the Jewish scriptures. Gospel Jesus is the only one we know anything about, so whether any of this is truly historical, who knows? Anyway, Gospel Jesus (and I'll just write "Jesus" for the rest of the post) is an itinerant rabbi, so of course he quotes, paraphrases and interprets Jewish scripture.

Stay with me for a bit. Those Jewish scriptures show a lot of influence from Greek culture, hence "Hellenized Judaism." In Jesus's own time, the occupiers of Judea were imperial Roman (and the local rulers of neighboring Jewish areas were Roman clients). Imperial Roman culture was heavily Greek-influenced.

One of the roots of Greek philosophy is Heraclitus (~ 500 BCE ... just about the time estimated for Gautama). His parents were nobles, possibly (Persian client) royalty, but Heraclitus retired from public life to pursue philosophy (much like the origin story of Gautama). He wrote one book, which survives only in quotations from it by later philophers, especially Greeks, including Plato, student of Socrates and teacher of Aristotle.

Among Heraclitus's teachings is insistence on the impermanence of all things (the familiar saying about being unable to step into the same river twice is his). There are also sayings of his that seem to have moved from him through Jewish prophets onto the lips of Jesus (e.g., a version of "hearing, they do not understand").

While nobody could rule out some direct Buddhist missionary contact (the Silk Road was in operation in Imperial times), there does seem to have been a sharing or simultaneous invention of ideas back in Buddhist origin times throughout different parts of the Indo-European world. Heraclitus's portion of those ideas made their way into Greek philosophy, and then from Aristotle to Alexander, and through Alexander's conquests into a wide terriitory, all the way back to India again.

It's a half-baked idea, I acknowledge, but the ingredients seem savory. Not all of Heraclitus's ideas are "Buddhist," but see if any of them ring a bell for you:

https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/heraclitus/

Good thread topic, BTW.

 

Thanks my friend for taking the time to write this, this is in-line with what I was trying to get at. There are multiple unproven and in some cases unbelievable accounts of where Jesus went during the so called lost years, I am trying to stay away from that. But there is one thing for certain at the time the biblical Jesus was in Judea Buddhism had already spread through the region in fact Buddhist Graves have been found in both Alexandria and Egypt dating to the time of Jesus life. So I have wondered if Buddhism had any influence upon early Christianity.
I realized this would be a difficult discussion because I don’t believe their are many who have enough knowledge about the subject and so far the replies have proven this to be accurate. Unfortunately I also do not have the necessary knowledge either to guide this discussion in the direction I intended. 

Thanks again for your help and trying to add something useful to the discussion I will check out the link you provided as I have time.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, The_Phantom_Stranger said:

The point I'm trying to make is that Christianity predates Buddhism because the older prophets who influenced Christ were before 500 B.C by 300 years. There appears to be a massive spiritual awakening at this time in more than one place around the world. The Greeks were also having it with Plato, Socrates and Aristotle. The Greeks were trading with the far East at this time and also Israel. Elijah himself was most likely Greek. The early Gospel was written in Greek. It might be the father of all these religions by the God Dionysus. Krishna predates Buddha and would have been some distinction of Christ who he would have known about. If the translations of the Bhagavad-gita are accurate and unbiased, then the similarities to it and the New Testament cannot be denied.

True Christianity started with Jesus Christ, so Christianity does not predate Buddhism. However the true Abrahamic religions, that the Jewish religion came from did start in the same time frame that Buddhism started. 
 

Thanks for your post 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Manwon Lender said:

It’s sad that you find my response amusing because it’s not amusing at all. It’s does prove one thing though that your knowledge of Buddhism is confined to what you are able to cut and past. Now your knowledge of Christianity I am unable to comment on, because my knowledge is limited concerning Christian Biblical Teachings. 

More cut and paste no original thought nothing generated by that personal process you could offer if you had a working knowledge of Buddhist Scripture. Please stick to the OP and thread title thank you.:yes:
 

 

I did.

I used a source to illustrate the two points I was making 

It explains my own peroanl pov 

I suspect you don't like the conclusions drawn.

ie 

Basically there is little difference (and much similarity)  between  Buddhism and Christianity, and one can combine both faiths into a lived path.

Imo both (and many other religions)   come from  human interactions with the cosmic consciousness, whether you call that ;god, the great spirit,  brahma, or one of the 3 Buddhist deities. 

Second, that religions often appear similar, not because  the y copied from  each other, but because the y evolved indendently to meet common human psychological needs, and thus have common architecture and beliefs  

I actually gave some considerable personal detail as to why I understand religions (  including Buddhism and Christianity ) as I do

Don't mistake a difference in perspective /understanding, for ignorance. 

It is more than possible that I have deeper /wider, theoretical understanding of Buddhism, its history, evolution, and variants, than you do, although you may well have a deeper spiritual attachment to it.  I had to know all that thoroughly to be able to teach it accurately,  but I had also studied it  in depth in my early twenties as i explored all the world's major faiths, seeking out the nature of the entity I was connected to. 

I live basically  by the noble 8 fold path and  the four Noble truths. These are not just theological beliefs but lived principles of truth eg I identified the presence  nature and causes of human suffering as a child. It took a few more years to eliminate suffering  Thus  I achieved the outcome of ending suffering (for me ) while still alive (indeed by my mid twenties) and basically reached a state of nirvana which ( in my experience) is not one fixed state, but a continuum.  

Live by them, and you get the outcomes described. (The same is true for living  most religious principles)  

I never formally adopted Buddhism, because there  were  no Buddhist communities or places of worship within hundreds of miles of where I lived, and at the time I valued the community/fellowship  of worship.

Ps I probably came to  the noble truths by the 8 fold path, although as a child i didn't realise what that was.

My understandings came from hours ( daily contemplation  for 10 years,  from  30 minutes to a couple of hours) of regular thought, introspection, application of logic, and learning to understand  and control my mind,  from early childhood.  ie I applied the three themes without conscious realisation that this is what I was doing. 

I was simply trying (from about the age of 3)  to make myself into a person who did no harm by thought or deed, to myself or to others, and who could fulfil their full potential as a human being, in order to help others, and to make the world a better place 

( I probably got this  from  my parents' humanist principles,  and my belief that thought created actions and consequences, and so, controlling and shaping thought was one's first  responsibility as a human being  )  

Control your mind, use your will, and you shape your actions. 

Edited by Mr Walker
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Crazy Horse said:

Buddha-nature.

Christ consciousness.

There is no difference.

lol (In   a good way) I just  wrote  hundreds of words trying to explain this truth.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

I did.

I used a source to illustrate the two points I was making 

It explains my own peroanl pov 

I suspect you don't like the conclusions drawn.

ie 

Basically there is little difference (and much similarity)  between  Buddhism and Christianity, and one can combine both faiths into a lived path.

Imo both (and many other religions)   come from  human interactions with the cosmic consciousness, whether you call that ;god, the great spirit,  brahma, or one of the 3 Buddhist deities. 

Second, that religions often appear similar, not because  the y copied from  each other, but because the y evolved indendently to meet common human psychological needs, and thus have common architecture and beliefs  

I actually gave some considerable personal detail as to why I understand religions (  including Buddhism and Christianity ) as I do

Don't mistake a difference in perspective /understanding, for ignorance. 

It is more than possible that I have deeper /wider, theoretical understanding of Buddhism, its history, evolution, and variants, than you do, although you may well have a deeper spiritual attachment to it.  I had to know all that thoroughly to be able to teach it accurately,  but I had also studied it  in depth in my early twenties as i explored all the world's major faiths, seeking out the nature of the entity I was connected to. 

I live basically  by the noble 8 fold path and  the four Noble truths. These are not just theological beliefs but lived principles of truth eg I identified the presence  nature and causes of human suffering as a child. It took a few more years to eliminate suffering  Thus  I achieved the outcome of ending suffering (for me ) while still alive (indeed by my mid twenties) and basically reached a state of nirvana which ( in my experience) is not one fixed state, but a continuum.  

Live by them, and you get the outcomes described. (The same is true for living  most religious principles)  

I never formally adopted Buddhism, because there  were  no Buddhist communities or places of worship within hundreds of miles of where I lived, and at the time I valued the community/fellowship  of worship.

Ps I probably came to  the noble truths by the 8 fold path, although as a child i didn't realise what that was.

My understandings came from hours ( daily contemplation  for 10 years,  from  30 minutes to a couple of hours) of regular thought, introspection, application of logic, and learning to understand  and control my mind,  from early childhood.  ie I applied the three themes without conscious realisation that this is what I was doing. 

I was simply trying (from about the age of 3)  to make myself into a person who did no harm by thought or deed, to myself or to others, and who could fulfil their full potential as a human being, in order to help others, and to make the world a better place 

( I probably got this  from  my parents' humanist principles,  and my belief that thought created actions and consequences, and so, controlling and shaping thought was one's first  responsibility as a human being  )  

Control your mind, use your will, and you shape your actions. 

Mr Walker I just don’t know what to say,  it’s difficult to gage the things you say. Because you portray yourself as some enlightened being with vast knowledge, but once examined with smallest bit of scrutiny your true nature becomes clear. 
 

Thanks for what your spreading I sure the flowers appreciate it. :)

  • Thanks 2
  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

46 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

lol (In   a good way) I just  wrote  hundreds of words trying to explain this truth.

Mr. Walker I would like you help on a topic I have been studying as part of my Buddhist Practices, could you please explain the meaning of the Hastikaksỵasūtra  it’s been giving me some trouble and I don’t have time to go to temple!

Thanks

  • Haha 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, The_Phantom_Stranger said:

The point I'm trying to make is that Christianity predates Buddhism because the older prophets who influenced Christ were before 500 B.C by 300 years. There appears to be a massive spiritual awakening at this time in more than one place around the world. The Greeks were also having it with Plato, Socrates and Aristotle. The Greeks were trading with the far East at this time and also Israel. Elijah himself was most likely Greek. The early Gospel was written in Greek. It might be the father of all these religions by the God Dionysus. Krishna predates Buddha and would have been some distinction of Christ who he would have known about. If the translations of the Bhagavad-gita are accurate and unbiased, then the similarities to it and the New Testament cannot be denied.

Do you know who Vishnu was?

Do you understand the concept of Bhagavad-gita?

Edited by Manwon Lender
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, eight bits said:

@Manwon Lender

That's a deep question, and not anything I've studied much. But maybe here's a lead you can think about.

Gospel Jesus's main influence is far and away the Jewish scriptures. Gospel Jesus is the only one we know anything about, so whether any of this is truly historical, who knows? Anyway, Gospel Jesus (and I'll just write "Jesus" for the rest of the post) is an itinerant rabbi, so of course he quotes, paraphrases and interprets Jewish scripture.

Stay with me for a bit. Those Jewish scriptures show a lot of influence from Greek culture, hence "Hellenized Judaism." In Jesus's own time, the occupiers of Judea were imperial Roman (and the local rulers of neighboring Jewish areas were Roman clients). Imperial Roman culture was heavily Greek-influenced.

One of the roots of Greek philosophy is Heraclitus (~ 500 BCE ... just about the time estimated for Gautama). His parents were nobles, possibly (Persian client) royalty, but Heraclitus retired from public life to pursue philosophy (much like the origin story of Gautama). He wrote one book, which survives only in quotations from it by later philophers, especially Greeks, including Plato, student of Socrates and teacher of Aristotle.

Among Heraclitus's teachings is insistence on the impermanence of all things (the familiar saying about being unable to step into the same river twice is his). There are also sayings of his that seem to have moved from him through Jewish prophets onto the lips of Jesus (e.g., a version of "hearing, they do not understand").

While nobody could rule out some direct Buddhist missionary contact (the Silk Road was in operation in Imperial times), there does seem to have been a sharing or simultaneous invention of ideas back in Buddhist origin times throughout different parts of the Indo-European world. Heraclitus's portion of those ideas made their way into Greek philosophy, and then from Aristotle to Alexander, and through Alexander's conquests into a wide terriitory, all the way back to India again.

It's a half-baked idea, I acknowledge, but the ingredients seem savory. Not all of Heraclitus's ideas are "Buddhist," but see if any of them ring a bell for you:

https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/heraclitus/

Good thread topic, BTW.

 

Good points The simultaneous invention of both ideas and artefacts or processes is quite common and recognised  as a part of historical evolution 

Of course the spread and osmosis of those things is perhaps more common   once people can travel widely 

Needs (both physical and psychological or philosophical, cause people  to respond in similar ways, all over the world 

  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Manwon Lender said:

Mr Walker I just don’t know what to say,  it’s difficult to gage the things you say. Because you portray yourself as some enlightened being with vast knowledge, but once examined with smallest bit of scrutiny your true nature becomes clear. 
   flowers appreciate it. :)

I dont expect you to believe it , and certainly it is a personal perspective.

But my reputation in my community  supports it 

The more interesting perspective, for me, is (given it is true) why you feel the need to reject it.

  Do you believe that while Buddhism presents an ideal, that ideal lis unattainable by an ordinary human being?

If so, then what is the point of the ideal (except to work towards it, and continually improve yourself)

 I don't take  credit for who I am. My parents, family, teachers, community  and relatives all played a part in forming me, as a child Then I took responsibility for shaping myself as an adult  However its the childhood experiences and learnings which are critical

Vast knowledge? subjective.

I have a lot of knowldge, and a lot of experience, but I am 70 years old, and have extended and challenged myself all m life with an occupation  which gave me months every year to try  to do and to learn many different things including many skills in operating a small farm  It would be  surprising/disappointing if i did not have a lot of knowledge and varied experiences. 

Even so it would take many life times to be all that i could be  Eg I only speak one language, and I can't play a single musical instrument 

Like all of us, I am a work in progress, and will die incomplete  (but without a single regret) .  

  • Haha 2
  • Confused 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Manwon Lender said:

Mr. Walker I would like you help on a topic I have been studying as part of my Buddhist Practices, could you please explain the meaning of the Hastikaksỵasūtra  it’s been giving me some trouble and I don’t have time to go to temple!

Thanks

:) 

 

Sutras are  Buddhist canon

I am not  particularly familiar with the one you mention. 

I do know that it is one of the Mahayanan  sutras, and is known as  "The sutra on the elephant's armpit"

It was written in Sanskrit and there are Tibetan and Chinese translations.

It is one of the older, once well known, but now less common sutras

I could google it to get more detail , but you could do the same. 

What problem are you having with it ?  Is it the concept that  states of existence have no origin, and that the truth is revealed through cognitive receptivity to it, rather than through material /learned ,knowledge ?  Or is it the deeper question of how to attain the unattainable ? :)  

I have some sympathy for that precept, but don't accept it entirely.  Some truths are revealed, but  some are learned through experience.  Thats probably a consequence of my western upbringing and the traces of western materialism.  if you are western raised this might also cause you some problems.

It requires an "eastern, spiritually orientated",  mind to simply accept and understand  This is learned and acculturalised   from birth for those born into the faith.

As a believer in vegetarianism,  I know this is one of the sutras which promotes vegetarianism 

  I've already explained that, for me, a faith is about a way of living and is personal/ individual, not canonical.

  l don't really believe in any religious doctrines from/via, faith/ indoctrination,  but  choose those which will produce a positive constructive outcome, wherever they come from.  

Edited by Mr Walker
  • Confused 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Mr Walker said:

:) 

 

Sutras are  Buddhist canon

I am not  particularly familiar with the one you mention. 

I do know that it is one of the Mahayanan  sutras, and is known as  "The sutra on the elephant's armpit"

It was written in Sanskrit and there are Tibetan and Chinese translations.

It is one of the older, once well known, but now less common sutras

I could google it to get more detail , but you could do the same. 

What problem are you having with it ?  Is it the concept that  states of existence have no origin, and that the truth is revealed through cognitive receptivity to it, rather than through material /learned ,knowledge ?  Or is it the deeper question of how to attain the unattainable ? :)  

I have some sympathy for that precept, but don't accept it entirely.  Some truths are revealed, but  some are learned through experience.  Thats probably a consequence of my western upbringing and the traces of western materialism.  if you are western raised this might also cause you some problems.

It requires an "eastern, spiritually orientated",  mind to simply accept and understand  This is learned and acculturalised   from birth for those born into the faith.

As a believer in vegetarianism,  I know this is one of the sutras which promotes vegetarianism 

  I've already explained that, for me, a faith is about a way of living and is personal/ individual, not canonical.

  l don't really believe in any religious doctrines from/via, faith/ indoctrination,  but  choose those which will produce a positive constructive outcome, wherever they come from.  

In a previous post you said “ It is more than possible that I have deeper /wider, theoretical understanding of Buddhism, its history, evolution, and variants, than you do. “ If the bolded section of your comments were true you would be very familiar with the Hastikaksỵasūtra. It’s part of the foundation of all sutra’s and it’s very important to anyone studying the early Buddhist Scriptures. To be honest I am not having any problem with what you cut and pasted because that’s the only thing you added so far. 

Now what I find amusing is the fact that you mention the Hastikaksỵasūtra and yet have no knowledge of its intent and meaning. So basically Mr. Walker stop trying to pretend your something your not, and go fertilize a garden with the load your trying to push here. Sir, I have given you a chance to prove your knowledge and you failed, so I will no longer answer any of you posts.

Oh and by the way Mr. Walker you have not contributed anything based upon the Title of this Thread or the OP, just wanted to point that out to you!:)

Thanks

Edited by Manwon Lender
  • Like 3
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

52 minutes ago, Wistman said:

I see the emphasis on universal compassion to be the driving link between Buddhism and Jesus's message. 

Hello Wistman thanks for your participation. I agree that is certainly a driving force for Buddhism and Christianity in general and thanks for adding that. Do you think there was any overlap between Buddhism and the early stages of Christianity. For instance it’s known that Buddhism already existed in the area of the Middle East were Jesus was born, there are graves and other relics attributed to the area.

@Sherapy, @jmccr8 @eight bits Here is an interesting theory that was put forward on The Zen Site, Was Jesus a Buddhist? http://www.thezensite.com/non_Zen/Was_Jesus_Buddhist.html

Now I don’t really know what to make of this, if any of you have time take a look at the above link and give me your thoughts. Thanks in advance.

So do you have any thoughts on any possible effects Buddhism may have had on Early Christianity?

Thanks for joining in I appreciate it!:tu:

Edited by Manwon Lender
  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mentioned this before and here it is... 

Quote
24 Jan 2017  Before I met Christianity, my only spiritual ancestor was the Buddha. But when I met beautiful men and women who are Christians, I came to know ...
 
 
 
 
23 Jun 2010  I think Christians are searching more for a way of experiencing and understanding God in a unitive way, or what I say in the book is a “non-...

~

 

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.