The Goals of Hinduism and Buddhism

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2. Hinduism and Buddhism are traditions that originated from the Vedic sacrifice practice, and they share a common foundation in their view of existence. What are the similarities, and very importantly, the differences in their respective focuses and goals? Also included in this topic: For a time, Buddhism became a dominant tradition in much of India, but then Hinduism rose to become the dominant tradition. There are relatively few Buddhists in India today, especially in comparison to the number of Hindus. Why did Buddhism "lose favor", and Hinduism become dominant? Discuss this historically (what happened and when did it happen) and analytically (why did most Indian people find Hinudism more attractive).

The world has many different religions. Out of these, Buddhism and Hinduism are the most popular beliefs in the general population. Hinduism is the oldest known religion and is very rich with literally hundreds of gods, symbolistic rituals and beliefs. It is believed to have been established around 1500 B.C. but one person never founded Hinduism, as it evolved over a long period of time. Buddhism on the other hand has a definite founder, Siddhartha Gautama who is otherwise known as the Buddha or Enlightened One who lived from 565 to 483 B.C. Both these religions originated in India. Siddhartha Gautama was a Hindu who found Hindu theology lacking and after years of searching for truth created a religion now known as Buddhism. Because of these basic similarities, the two religions have much in common, but in the same light they differ immensely. Both Hinduism and Buddhism are more philosophical than religious. Both describe an all-encompassing philosophy and define existence itself. For instance, the essential Hindu concept defining the individual and his responsibilities is dharma. A convoluted term, dharma is a sense of obligation. One must fulfill his roles in society and the world. Such responsibilities include reproduction and caste duties, but extend into...
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