I’m VERY interested in becoming a Buddhist.
I just left the Catholic faith because i got tired of all the prejudices and violent history behind that religion.

So I’m just wondering what can i do to become a Buddhist?
what can and can’t I do in Buddhism?
which version of Buddhism is right for me?
i know there are different types of Buddhism, so I’m just curious which one fits me best, but I’m really edging towards Zen Buddhism due to its emphasis on meditation.
sorry for all the questions!!!
Sage: i discarded all that, near the end of my association of the Catholic/Christian faith i was actually ashamed to say i belong to that religion…

i still believe in God though, its nice to know that what cant be explained by science can also be explained by the supernatural….

4 Comments

  • 1. Technically speaking, to take refuge in the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the Sangha constitutes being a Buddhist. This can be done either by making a conscious, non-ceremonial commitment to the Triple Gem, or by going through a ceremony officiated by a Buddhist monk. In any case, the most important factor is a willingness to practice according to the Buddha’s teachings and to lead the life of a Buddhist.

    2. Lay buddhist observe the five precepts. It is an ideals to strive for. They are not absolute. Just as a happy marriage or a good job is an ideal to strive for though we know that we may never achieve the ideal, similarly the five precepts serve as a guideline to good conduct which Buddhists are encouraged to strive for.
    Buddhism teachs suffering and the end of suffering. It is up to us to realize the end of suffering. There are no divine being who will punish you or give a credit for your merit. It’s the law of cause and effect that prevails for every thought, speech and action of yours. In the practice of Buddhism, we fight greed, aversion and delusion with Dhamma, using patient endurance. This is called fighting inwardly. Buddhism teaches a method of how to control, how to overcome these evil tendencies lying latent in us. To exercise this control we need three training towards development – Sila, Samadhi, and Panna (Morality, Concentration, Insight.)
    some advice for lay buddhist can be read in:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Householder_%28Buddhism%29

    3. All buddhist schools has a unifying factor of the Buddha’s basic teaching such as : Four noble truth, 3 Marks of Existences, Dependent of Origination, Law of Cause and Effect, Rebirth, Eight Noble Path etc;
    that the purpose of life is to develop compassion for all living beings without discrimination and to work for their good, happiness and peace; and to develop wisdom leading to the realization of Ultimate Truth.
    First learn to understand the basic teachings of buddhism from many sources, like:
    http://www.dharmaweb.org/index.php/Category:Articles
    http://www.buddhanet.net/ebooks.htm
    Differences lies in the emphazising on some teaching and the method of practice. You might want to choose which one of the buddhist schools that suitable for your practices in due course.

    4. You also might want to visit buddhist centres in your local area, where you can meet with right community who would offer you a valuable assistance and direction for your practices, like meditation, because being a Buddhist is not only a matter of accepting a belief system or memorizing doctrines, but to practice Buddhism.
    The world buddhist centre can be find in :
    http://www.dharmaweb.org/index.php/Category:World_Buddhist_Directory

  • BUDDHISM — Religious teaching from Buddha and his followers that by destroying greed, hatred and delusion (the cause of all suffering) man can attain perfect enlightenment!!

    Therefore as an ex christian you will need to discard the intolerance, egotism, hatred, bigotry and love of persecuting!

    As for what is right for you then as an ex christian you now have an open mind and should be capable of questioning, learning assessing and finding that out for yourself!!

    And please do not be afraid to realize that without a god that buddhism is an atheist religion – that is why it is so nice!!

    Good luck!!

  • maybe buy a copy of Huston Smith’s, Buddhism.
    and i’m suggestion it without having actually read it but i’ve read his books on world religions and he explains things really well. (or maybe just go to the library and check out one of his world religions books?)
    go to a site like Amazon and look at the reviews and you can also look at the table of contents(i did and it looked like a great overview of the different types of Buddhism and Buddhist meditation)

    EDIT-i just deleted most of my answer because i just got a book,started reading it today!, on Zen meditation that also incorporates some therapy to speed up the awakening process.. the book is called Big Heart,Big Mind and it also includes a CD with a guided Zen meditation. you definitely should check into this if you think you are interested in Zen. in fact , i also, watched a Big Heart youtube video by Zen Master Merzel. in the world of Buddhist awakening this might be revolutionary stuff.
    i practice Mahasati meditation and i can and will incorporate this into my practice.

Leave a Comment