Buddhism vs Christianity

Topics: Buddhism, Jesus, Mary Pages: 3 (893 words) Published: January 6, 2013
Since the arrival of Christian missionaries in the East in the 13th century, followed by the arrival of Buddhism in Western Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries, similarities were perceived between the practices of Buddhism and Christianity.[1][2] During the 20th century the differences between these two belief systems were also highlighted.[3] Despite surface level non-scholarly analogies, Buddhism and Christianity have inherent and fundamental differences at the deepest levels, beginning with monotheism's place at the core of Christianity and Buddhism's orientation towards non-theism and its rejection of the notion of a creator deity which runs counter to teachings about God in Christianity; and extending to the importance of Grace in Christianity against the rejection of interference with Karma in Theravada Buddhism, etc.[4][5][6] The central iconic imagery of the two traditions underscore the difference in their belief structure, when the peaceful death of Gautama Buddha at an old age is contrasted with the harsh image of the crucifixion of Jesus as a willing sacrifice for the atonement for the sins of humanity.[3] Buddhists scholars such as Masao Abe see the centrality of crucifixion in Christianity as an irreconcilable gap between the two belief systems.[7][8] Most modern scholarship has roundly rejected any historical basis for the travels of Jesus to India or Tibet or influences between the teachings of Christianity and Buddhism, and has seen the attempts at parallel symbolism as cases of parallelomania which exaggerate the importance of trifling resemblances.[9][10][11][12] Reports of Buddhist practices stared to arrive in Western Europe by the 13th century, and were followed by trips by Christian missionaries such as John of Montecorvino and reports began to arrive in the 16th century as missionaries such as St. Francis Xavier arrived in the East.[1] In the 19th century, some authors began to perceive similarities between Buddhist and Christian...
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