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Posted on June 14th, 2012, by

Buddhism arose from Hinduism, which is considered to be a religious tradition, and occurred over five thousand years ago.

This paper introduces the information on similarities between Hinduism and Buddhism. It presents the major similarities between these two religions, such as Karma, Dharma, and Yoga.

The main similarities between Hinduism and Buddhism include the following:

Karma is one of the central concepts in philosophy and Indian religions, such as Buddhism and Hinduism, and is considered to be a universal cycle of cause and effect according to which the righteous or sinful human actions determine his/her fate. Thus, karma is the basis of a causal series, also known as samsara. Simply formulated, it states that all actions have consequences which will affect the doer of the action at some future time (Reichenbach 399).

In addition, karma means act or deed. In a broader sense, it embodies universal principles of cause and effect, activity and its consequences, action and reaction that are ubiquitous in our life. Karma cannot be considered to be fate because people act in accordance with free will and thus build their own destiny. Karma is a collection of all our actions and their consequences both in these and in previous incarnations, which determine our future.

The law of karma has a spiritual origin. A lot of Hindus see God’s direct intervention in the karmic processes, whereas others examine the natural laws of actions and their consequences as a sufficient explanation of the effects of karma. Karma cannot be described as retribution or punishment. It is the consequences of the individual’s natural acts.

Buddhists see karma as intentional action, but not every action. In Buddhist terminology, karma never means its consequences; its consequences are well-known as the fruit or result. The intention may be relatively good or bad, as well as the desire may be good or bad. So that karma can be relatively good or bad. Good karma produces good results, and bad karma produces bad results.

Dharma is an Indian philosophical or religious term that means Natural Law and is used to denote a moral duty. In a more general sense, it is the path to piety.

Dharma plays a primary role in Indian religions, such as Buddhism and Hinduism, which profess and practice its principles. In the teachings of these religions, dharma serves as a proper understanding of nature, or God as its original source. According to these religious traditions, people, who live in harmony with the principles of dharma, quickly reach moksha or nirvana.

In the Mahabharata, Krishna considers dharma to be the natural order of things both in the material world and in the spiritual one.

Dharma is considered to be one of the central and at the same time one of the most complex categories of Buddhist thought. Buddhists see dharma as a universal law of objective reality developed by the Buddha.

The last main similarity between Hinduism and Buddhism is yoga. Yoga is the concept in Indian culture. Broadly speaking, yoga means the totality of various spiritual, mental and physical practices developed in different directions of Hinduism and Buddhism, and designed to control the mental and physiological functions of the person’s organism in order to achieve a lofty spiritual and mental state.

In conclusion, it is possible to say that the major similarities between these two religions were discussed and explored in a proper way. Despite the obvious differences between Hinduism and Buddhism, it can be said that these two religions have much in common.

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