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Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Discussion of other spiritual or religious traditions with Zen in mind.

Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Sadaparibhuta on Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:32 am

I've been practicing Buddhism for over two years. I am thirty-one years old, and was raised in a Christian background. I've been interested in eastern religions, particularly Daoism, Hinduism, and Buddhism since high school.

I've noticed that, in Nepal, there are temples where both Hinduism and Buddhism is practiced in the same temple. In Thailand, there's popular devotion to the four-faced Brahma. In Japan, Hindu gods are worshiped or petitioned as Shinto Kami.

Would anyone like to discuss the positive things there are in Buddhism in relation to Hinduism, things that are missing in Hinduism that the Buddha discovered or taught? I appreciate your help. :Namaste:

I have so much love for the Buddha and for Avalokitesvara that I don't think I could ever be Hindu. While the Bhagavad Gita is well-known as a devotional book, I think it's rivaled by the Lotus Sutra in its beauty, in how the sutra shows the Buddha's love for the world.

According to the Jataka tales, Sariputra was Krishna in a past life:

At the end of this Ghata-Jataka discourse, the Buddhist text declares that Sariputta, one of the revered disciples of the Buddha in the Buddhist tradition, was incarnated as Krishna in his previous life to learn lessons on grief from the Buddha in his prior rebirth:

Then he [Master] declared the Truths, and identified the Birth: 'At that time, Ananda was Rohineyya, Sariputta was Vasudeva [Krishna], the followers of the Buddha were the other persons, and I myself was Ghatapandita."

— Jataka Tale No. 454, Translator: W. H. D. Rouse[200]

While the Buddhist Jataka texts co-opt Krishna-Vasudeva and make him a student of the Buddha in his previous life,[200] the Hindu texts co-opt the Buddha and make him an avatar of Vishnu.[201][202] The 'divine boy' Krishna as an embodiment of wisdom and endearing prankster forms a part of the pantheon of gods in Japanese Buddhism.[203]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krishna
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Kim on Fri Jun 30, 2017 10:46 am

Howdy.

I suppose the differences or similarities of different religions or schools within the same religion can be viewed from different points of view. What matters the most to me is how the various methods help people to diminish or extinquish dukkha, their existential confusion caused by the sense of self.

Also within hinduism there are schools and lineages that teach nonduality which I think is the essence of buddhism too. However, if we look at buddhism in general it is clear that at least in theory it puts a lot emphasis on insight into the self-empty nature of mind which in turn is caused by various methods of vipashyana meditation as an antidote to self-delusion. While in hinduism there is advaita school (and possible others that I'm unaware of) that also emphasises this point, they are marginal within the whole of the religion, while in buddhism it's mainstream, at least in theory.

And yet, in both religions people get awakened and mature in that insight to varying degrees. There are also living buddhas in both religions. Some buddhists insist on the point that one can become a buddha only through emptiness philosophy and not through any other systems whatever they may be. I don't think it's that black and white.
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Sadaparibhuta on Fri Jun 30, 2017 12:23 pm

The main reason why I could never be Hindu is I can't believe that an all-loving, all-powerful creator God would allow for so much suffering and evil in the world. Buddhas and bodhisattvas are human beings who attained a high spiritual status, not gods.
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Kim on Fri Jun 30, 2017 1:11 pm

Sadaparibhuta wrote:The main reason why I could never be Hindu is I can't believe that an all-loving, all-powerful creator God would allow for so much suffering and evil in the world. Buddhas and bodhisattvas are human beings who attained a high spiritual status, not gods.


Not all hindus believe in a creator God.

Buddhas and bodhisattvas can be in human body but also in non-human, non-physical form.
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby jundo on Fri Jun 30, 2017 2:07 pm

If there is a Shiva or Vishnu ... chop wood and carry water, sit Zazen and live gently.

And if there is no Shiva or Vishnu ... chop wood and carry water, sit Zazen and live gently.

Shiva and Vishnu or no Shiva nor Vishnu ... a moment of Shikantaza is the Realization and Wholeness of All.

It gives Shiva the shivers, makes Vishnu turn Jewish, and causes Jesus to pray to the Devil for a little help.

Gassho, J
Founder Treeleaf Zendo, Japan. Member SZBA. Treeleaf is an online Sangha for those unable to commute to a Sangha, w/ netcast Zazen, interaction with other practitioners and teachers & all activities of a Soto Sangha, fully online without charge (http://www.treeleaf.org) Nishijima/Niwa
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby bokki on Fri Jun 30, 2017 2:21 pm

It gives Shiva the shivers, makes Vishnu turn Jewish, and causes Jesus to pray to the Devil for a little help.

LOL Reverend LOL lol LOL LOL..!!!! u just threw me into another fit of laughter!!!
LOL, THANX much appreciated! cant stop again!!!

ok
ok

uh,LOL!
...
hi Sadaparibhuta(btw does the nondisparaging bodhissatva have a nickname, since im old cant c well and cant spell? thnx) and Kim. u 2 have made my day, and now J Roshi 2, but wont harp on it, but since u did may i offer some stupid opinions, inmho.
imo, lotus sutra is called the king bcs it expounds the teaching of one vehicle, contrary 2 lesser or biger one. in it bodhissatvas r called children playing in a burning house. lotus is not about bodhissatvas, but about the 1 vehicle. i think some call it ekayana, but idk. further if u dont believe in lets say hindu gods, u surely know that the whole universe is the one buddhas field, and yet there is suffering and pain. its a wonder who this buddha is.
i dont offer advice or try 2 influence any1, and seldom ask d next, but do u practice with a zen teacher? it may help u 2 overcome some basic obstacles if u have any. u seem quite suited 4 soto shikantaza, but if a big will 4 awakening and impatience, maybe rinzai, or chan masters who teach both. im sry 4 this, since im in no possition to advise.all imo only
but thank you both very much

And Jundo Roshi what a brilliant zen joke!!thnx
b :heya:
ps and plz dont be bothered by my stupid remarcs in the lotus thread,sry. :heya:
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Caodemarte on Fri Jun 30, 2017 3:51 pm

In general, the conventional basic distinction is that Buddhism does not accept (or reject) an eternal substance. Non-duality in Hinduism usually means "All is one." In Buddhism it means "Not two."
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Kim on Fri Jun 30, 2017 4:55 pm

Caodemarte wrote:In general, the conventional basic distinction is that Buddhism does not accept (or reject) an eternal substance. Non-duality in Hinduism usually means "All is one." In Buddhism it means "Not two."


"All is one". That exactly is what some buddhist philosophical materialists critizise.

I'd say that in buddhism it's not two but not one either. Which is what advaita teaches too...
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Caodemarte on Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:10 pm

As far as I know; advaita is usually defined as a Vedantic doctrine that identifies the individual self (atman) with the ground of reality (brahman); Shankara ( c 788–820) being perhaps the most famous exponent. Brahman, at least, is fundamentally real. "All is one" is an acceptable, if coarse, summary. In various forms advaita is widely accepted in most forms of Hinduism. This is considered a fundamental philosophical difference of Hinduism with Buddhism, which is not a Vedantic school. Buddhism is not advaita from the get go. Mahayana Buddhism (from the Madhyamika on for sure) especially could be called advaya or advaya-viida, negation of both views or extremes of the real, but not advaita (see the old classic THE CENTRAL PHILOSOPHY OF BUDDHISM by T.R.V. Murthi for a long discussion of this in terms of the Madhyamakima for why this is an important distinction). So "all is one" or "nothing exists" could not really be accepted in Mahayana Buddhism if we are using more precise language. Please note that I am not arguing for anything here and not defining what is "real advaita." Just noting how the terms are usually used and what is usually considered to be one of the main differentiations of Hinduism and Buddhism.

As an aside, remember the old koan "The ten-thousand dharmas return to the one—to where does the one return?" (not that I am suggesting we start looking for philosophical lessons there)?
Last edited by Caodemarte on Sat Jul 01, 2017 2:08 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Kim on Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:41 pm

Caodemarte wrote:As far as I know; advaita is usually defined as a Vedantic doctrine that identifies the individual self (atman) with the ground of reality (brahman); Shankara ( c 788–820) being perhaps the most famous exponent. Brahman, at least, is fundamentally real. "All is one" is an acceptable, if coarse, summary. In various forams, advaita is widely accepted in most forms of Hinduism. This is considered a fundamental philosophical difference of Hinduism with Buddhism, which is not a Vedantic school. Buddhism is not advaita from the get go. Mahayana Buddhism (from the Madhyamika on for sure) especially could be called advaya or advaya-viida, negation of both views or extremes of the real, but not advaita (see the old classic THE CENTRAL PHILOSOPHY OF BUDDHISM by T.R.V. Murthi for a long discussion of this in terms of the Madhyamakima for why this is an important distinction). So "all is one" or "nothing exists" could not really be accepted in Mahayana Buddhism if we are using more precise language. Please note that I am not arguing for anything here and not defining what is "real advaita." Just noting how the terms are usually used and what is usually considered to be one of the main differentiations of Hinduism and Buddhism.

As an aside, remember the old koan "The ten-thousand dharmas return to the one—to where does the one return?" (not that I am suggesting we start looking for philosophical lessons here)?


I am fluent in doctrinal or historical details but I once came across some pointing out instructions from Nisargadatta that could have gone as buddhism. I didn't mean to say that these two schools are the same.
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Caodemarte on Sun Jul 02, 2017 1:41 pm

Kim wrote: I am fluent in doctrinal or historical details but I once came across some pointing out instructions from Nisargadatta that could have gone as buddhism. I didn't mean to say that these two schools are the same.


It is a fine line to walk. One can't say that they are the same. However, at the end the differences may be more a matter of emphasis than anything else.
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Re: Buddhism in Relation to Hinduism

Postby Kim on Sun Jul 02, 2017 3:24 pm

Kim wrote:
Caodemarte wrote:As far as I know; advaita is usually defined as a Vedantic doctrine that identifies the individual self (atman) with the ground of reality (brahman); Shankara ( c 788–820) being perhaps the most famous exponent. Brahman, at least, is fundamentally real. "All is one" is an acceptable, if coarse, summary. In various forams, advaita is widely accepted in most forms of Hinduism. This is considered a fundamental philosophical difference of Hinduism with Buddhism, which is not a Vedantic school. Buddhism is not advaita from the get go. Mahayana Buddhism (from the Madhyamika on for sure) especially could be called advaya or advaya-viida, negation of both views or extremes of the real, but not advaita (see the old classic THE CENTRAL PHILOSOPHY OF BUDDHISM by T.R.V. Murthi for a long discussion of this in terms of the Madhyamakima for why this is an important distinction). So "all is one" or "nothing exists" could not really be accepted in Mahayana Buddhism if we are using more precise language. Please note that I am not arguing for anything here and not defining what is "real advaita." Just noting how the terms are usually used and what is usually considered to be one of the main differentiations of Hinduism and Buddhism.

As an aside, remember the old koan "The ten-thousand dharmas return to the one—to where does the one return?" (not that I am suggesting we start looking for philosophical lessons here)?


I am NOT fluent in doctrinal or historical details but I once came across some pointing out instructions from Nisargadatta that could have gone as buddhism. I didn't mean to say that these two schools are the same.


Oh, a bad typo. I meant I am NOT fluent in doctrinal and historical details :)
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