Points to Ponder- Just musing on ...
How does the present day humans become religious.
By birth, the child gets used to the surrounding background of their parents in the society. This mainly involves the life style of the immediate family of the child as the child is used to absorb many qualities during this stage of the life just by seeing and hearing things around him or her. Whatever the religious beliefs the parents have, the child automatically embraces and become a believer of the same religion.
If parents don't get involved actively in religious matters, then the chances are that the child also will not have much involvement or belief in the religious matters.
Mostly the adult continues with the religious beliefs he or she natured during the childhood progressing into the adulthood as well. Some get actively involved in the religious matters while others might loosely bond to the religion. Chances are that most of the people will have the religious beliefs that were formed during the childhood through out the life he will spend in this world.
Why do people believe in a religion
It could be mostly due to the unsecureness of the life one has to face. A person seeks guidance from a religion so that the inner self could be comforted with the believes that are in a religion during the stressful times of the life. Sometimes the problems one faces in the life do not have simple solutions however one tries to solve. The society or the environment doesn't help to overcome many problems one may have. So the person involuntarily seeks the assistance of a powerful person mentally to get assistance for the woes the person undergoes. It could be identified as a human nature to seek the protection from another as conditioned by the infant stages. Normally during infantcy it is the parents who make the infant feel secure by giving all protection needed, that is food, shelter, knowledge, well being on health and love to say the minimum of it.
Even with a person with a successful run in the life without much difficulties and leading a comfortable life with the loved ones may highly get involved in religions. It could be that he sees others suffer around him and he being exceptional to the rule, might think that the power in his belief is protecting him and mentally adoring the power for looking after him.
Another condition may be that a person might need the inner comfort and the assurance that in future, he might get the assistance, health and strength from the power so that one could lead a happy life the way he expects.
Loosely said, the above may be the likely pattern for a person to pursue a religious belief in life.
The seekers of the truth in life
How many of us will expound on the religious beliefs seriously for the sake of understanding the meaning of the life? It might be very seldom, if not at all as it appears today. How many religions will give the freedom for a believer to use his free will to question the points one cannot agree on. Majority of religions will not entertain this idea at all. In the inner self, one may feel that he needs to find more about himself but how to find more about himself will be a challenge even today. A person might not think to question the beliefs he has on religious matters since it erodes the very essential " unquestionable belief" factor which is expected from an ardent believer.
Buddhists of the present day
Even many traditional Buddhists have undergone the condition of being Buddhists just by inheritance. Having such a profound path as expounded by the Buddha, very seldom will they seriously look into the teachings deeply. It is no wonder anyhow. The present day is not a conductive place for anything as serious as that to get developed unhindered. The Buddha has on many occasions stressed the point that it is very seldom that for a person even to think on matters related to annihilation on Dukka or the suffering as most will aim all the energy for the seeking of the worldly pleasure only.
The Buddha has said that anyone with the will to follow the path as explained by him can also attend to the same blissful status that the Buddha himself has attended. So this is the task a Buddhist must undertake during this lifetime itself. A very few Buddhists only will come to this ideology of the Buddha. The main reason is that a majority of present day Buddhists do not know correctly what the main points the Buddha has stressed on. The rituals of Buddhist culture has overshadowed the Buddhist teachings so even for a person who has an interest to learn the teachings fail to get hold of the sublime teachings of the Buddha at the present day.
What do many religions have in common
Have you ever wondered on the untold truth that every religion tells to it's believers? Just give a heeding to this point carefully. How many of religions will state that the life one leads in this world is the perfect or the blissful life? May be none. Most religions will invite one to the blissful status after this life. The message in the finer prints is that the life one leads in this world is not as pleasent as one might think as it is and a hope is given for a blissful life for the ardent believer after this life. Without stating that there is suffering in this human life, which is a fact itself, one is offered relief only after the end of ones lifetime in most cases.
The difference of Buddhism with other religions
It all starts here in this very life. The Buddha understood the imperfectness the humans has to undergo in this life and shown the way out of suffering to be attained in this very life itself.
We will try to see how the Gauthama Buddha helped the mankind with his vision to lead a blissful life as a human during one's own life time. In the succeeding postings an effort will be taken to present the Buddha's teachings in a simple way that even a non Buddhist may be able to understand.
History of Buddhism
The Gautama Buddha
Buddha India pilgrimage
Points to ponder