Buddhism

Classified as one of the largest religions in the world, Buddhism is heavily concentrated in the Indian subcontinent. Buddhism is seen as a religion that leads more to spiritualism rather than religious teachings. Founded by Buddha, one must achieve their own spiritual awakening, or nirvana, through meditation and ethical living. Most Buddhists spend a large portion of their time in self-reflection or meditation as a way to liberate themselves from perceptions of inadequacy. One must reflect on the actual consciousness of being in order to liberate them into nirvana.

Through human desires, Buddhists believe that suffering is an imperative part of life’s existence. Due to the temporary time spent in human life, suffering is inevitable whether from the beginning or to the end of one’s life. Buddhists have developed a way to end that suffering by following the teaching of the Four Noble Truths. The four dukkho, or sufferings, undertaken in one’s life consist of suffering from the beginning or understanding that suffering exists, craving to be or not to be part of the intimate world, removing all suffering from one’s life and finally the actual cessation of the suffering from one’s life. Many things can cause suffering in one’s life from physical and mental, people and situation or the feeling of inadequacy.

Buddhists also follow an eightfold path of wisdom (views, intention, knowledge and liberation), ethical conduct (speech, action and livelihood) and concentration (effort, mindfulness and concentration). All of these paths can be achieved together or individually depending on the individual. Buddhists are deemed to be peaceful while trying to maintain all ethical conduct in order to achieve their spiritual nirvana. Being in the right mind and choosing the right actions and conducts allow for a better moral upbringing in order to not bring corruption or harm to themselves or to others. For many, this is seen more so as a philosophy of spirituality than of a religion as the teachings are specific to goodwill over teachings from a deity.

Followers of Buddha ask their bodhisattvas or highly awakened beings for protection and blessings as a sign of reverence and respect over that of worship. Buddhists do not worship any deities nor Buddha, but rather pray and worship for their own inner peace. Sects of Buddhism exist throughout Southeastern Asia, but one thing remains in stone for all followers of Buddhist teachings: one needs to spend their time working on spiritual nirvana as a way to remain whole.

 

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