One of the biggest differences between western and eastern religious thinking is about time.
Is it linear or circular?
Do Hindus and Buddhists believe in or worship the God of the Bible?
What are the pillars of Hindu beliefs?
Brahman – Supreme essence of all reality
Atman – The person/self
Karma – A moral law of cause and effect where choices made garner a cosmic response in this life and/or the next. All choices based on our personal desires are subject to consequences.
Samsara – The constant cycle of rebirth for Atman whose Karma has not been balanced. The goal is to escape this cycle by disconnecting from ourselves and becoming one with Brahman, through whatever path leads to the end of bad Karma or all Karma.
Moksha – True enlightenment and oneness with Brahman and the end to Samsara and all suffering.
What are the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism?
Dukkha – Suffering. Literally every aspect of life, including our misperception that we are who we think we are. The suffering is prolonged through the rebirth cycle, Samsara (different from how it’s viewed in Hindu teachings because “you” don’t exist).
Tanha – Thirst/Desire/Craving. Any desire, good or bad, leads to Dukkha/Suffering. Any action of the will is Karma and Buddhists seek to create no Karma at all to escape Samsara.
Nirvana – The extinction of thirst. It is not a place you go to nor the end of your existence, because you don’t exist to begin with, and you’ll only achieve Nirvana by letting go of that illusion. It’s embracing the ultimate reality of interconnectedness and absence of distinctions.
The (Eightfold) Path – The way to Nirvana
1. Right view 2. Right Intention 3. Right Speech 4. Right Action 5. Right Livelihood 6. Right Effort 7. Right Mindfulness 8. Right Concentration
Do you see effects from this thinking in our culture?
How does the Bible differ?
There is one, true God who is personal and created everything in the beginning.
We live and die once on earth and then live in eternity as ourselves.
Our actions are the problem because we have sinned against God and deserve his wrath.
The solution is to repent from our sins and trust in the substitutionary atoning work of Jesus on the cross.
The end goal is living eternally with God on the New Earth following his renewal of all things.
Chad Moore | Minister to Students and Family Ministries Ph: 239.689.2551 MSMstudents.net
McGregor Baptist Church 3750 Colonial Blvd.| Fort Myers, FL 33966 www.mcgregor.net
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McGregor Baptist Church 3750 Colonial Blvd. Fort Myers, FL 33966