Are these corruptions of the Buddha's teachings? Relevance. Buddhism is unique amongst the religions of the world because it does not have any place for God in its soteriology. Many people, not familiar with Buddhist thought, assume that the label of “religion” means Buddhists must believe in some type of God. Following this belief, practitioners of Mahayana simultaneously worship Buddha and maintain a non-theistic worldview. This religion is based on … I was raised a fundamentalist Pentecostal and then became Catholic in college. Is buddhism theistic or nontheistic? While Buddhism is a tradition focused on spiritual liberation, it is not a theistic religion. There is no personal god or monotheistic creator God in Buddhism, as there is in Christianity, Judaism or Islam. In the Zen monastery where I first learned about Buddhism, the monks liked to point to the Buddha representation on the altar and say, "That's you up there. But Buddhism is non-theistic. Taoism is a belief that the Tao is a metaphysical law of nature, and if you open your mind to the idea that god doesn't have to be a personified entity, you could call the Tao god I suppose. Buddhism is commonly distinguished on doctrinal grounds from monotheistic and polytheistic religions by the fact that it refutes the existence of a divine Creator, and indeed there is ample textual evidence in early Buddhist, Mahayana, and Vajrayana treatises to support this claim.' Some branches allow for elements of theism (belief in deities) but this is often considered to be optional. Tibetan Buddhism also has … But Buddhism goes beyond most of these other religions in that it is positively anti-theistic because the very notion of God conflicts with some principles which are … Webster's New World Dictionary (Third College Edition): defines religion as: "any specific system of belief and worship, often involving a code of ethics and a philosophy." But in Buddhism, merely believing in doctrines is beside the point. Neither concept is right or wrong. Serving is leadership. If atheism is the absence of belief in a God or gods, then many Buddhists are, indeed, atheists. A similar form of functional … Buddhism is essentially non-theistic. The Buddha taught that believing in gods was not useful for those seeking to realize enlightenment. It entirely depends upon your understanding of a theistic religion and how you would describe an act of worship. However, it is a way of life. These are non-theistic religions. In Buddhism, we’re taught to bow with mutual respect, and self-respect. Yet, throughout Asia, it is common to find people praying to the Buddha or to the many clearly mythical figures that populate Buddhist iconography. He acclaimed the supremacy of the … You aren’t any better than me except to the extent that you serve me and others better than I do. She is the author of "Rethinking Religion" and has covered religion for The Guardian, Tricycle.org, and other outlets. Beliefs of any kind play a different role in Buddhism than in many other religions. For these folks, Buddhism can be seen as supplementing and enriching their own theistic faith and practice. Whether or not it can be termed a religion is debatable—the etymology of the word ‘religion’ refers to God. Buddhism is a non-theistic religion and way of life; it has a different view on what is ultimate reality. In other words, God is unnecessary in Buddhism, as this is a practical religion and philosophy that emphasizes practical results over faith in beliefs or deities. Mar 2013 522 _ Sep 29, 2015 #2 Depends on who's practicing. That's an argument that many of us atheistic Buddhists can appreciate. Some Buddhists are theists and others are atheists. Certainly,  Buddhism in practice has many of the same "literal versus allegorical" issues one finds in other religions. 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