No matter where you go in the world there will be some kind of belief system or religion. Some belief systems are very popular and complex while others are not as popular and very simple. They are all different but they are all the same in the sense that they have the same things. They all include their god, or deity, followers, a holy book, laws, and basic beliefs. Two of these belief systems are known as Buddhism and one of the more commonly known belief systems, Christianity.
Buddhism is among the top 10 most popular belief systems in the world, and it is the 4th largest religion in the world. It is commonly practiced almost everywhere in the world, as there are about 1.2 to 1.6 billion people world wide who practice Buddhism, but you will find the largest concentration of Buddhism in south-eastern Asia. There is no god in Buddhism; they follow the teachings of a man named Siddhartha Gautama, who was the founder of Buddhism. They have no real beliefs, like they do in Christianity or Judaism; instead they follow the Eightfold Path, which in turn, leads them to the Four Noble Truths. What is the Eightfold Path and how does it lead to the Four Noble Truths? What are the Four Noble Truths?
The Four Noble Truths contain the four truths in the world, these four "noble" truths are what make the world the way it is today. According to the Four Noble Truths, life means suffering, the origin of suffering is attachment, the cessation of suffering is attainable, and the path to cessation of suffering. What does all this mean?
According to the first of the truths, "Life means suffering". Basically it is talking about how human nature and the world we live in is not perfect. No matter how long we live, we have to go through some kind of suffering, sometimes on a day to day basis. There are generally two different kinds of suffering, physical suffering and psychological suffering. Physical suffering is when we suffer from sickness, injury, pain, and eventually death, while psychological suffering has to do with our feelings, like sadness, fear, and depression.
The second of the four truths states that “the origin of suffering is attachment”. In other words, we suffer because we are attached to transient things like money, TV, and books. The origin of suffering also comes from our ignorance of our attachments. Ignorance is commonly defined as the lack of understanding how our mind is attached to impermanent things.
Nirodha is how the cessation of suffering can be attained, or so says the third noble truth. Nirodha means the unmaking of sensual craving and conceptual attachment. By saying that cessation of suffering can be attained by the "unmaking of sensual craving and conceptual attachment", you are really saying that in order to end the idea of suffering you need to attain dispassion.
The fourth and final of the noble truths talks about the "path to the cessation of suffering". The path, in fact, is another of the key beliefs in Buddhism; the eightfold path. The eightfold path is nothing more than a gradual path of self-improvement. It leads to the end of the cycle of rebirth and is the middle way between hedonism and asceticism, which are the two extremes of self-indulgence and self-mortification.
The eightfold path is a gradual path of eight steps to attain the four noble truths. The eightfold path's steps can be broken up into steps into wisdom, ethical conduct, and mental development. In wisdom, you have the right view and the right intention. In ethical conduct you have the right speech, the right action, and the right livelihood. In the mental development you have the right effort, the right mindfulness, and the right concentration. By following the four noble truths and the eightfold path you should eventually reach Nirvana.
Out of all the belief systems in the world, Christianity is the largest belief system in the world with over 2.1 billion members all over the planet. There is no easy way to tell about where Christianity is practiced because it is practiced every where in the world. Christians believe in many things, like the 10 commandments, one god, and the afterlife. One very unique belief in Christianity is that of the devil, or Satan.
There are two main aspects to the term "after life". In Christianity belief, when you die, you will either go to heaven, to live with all mighty God, or go to hell where you would be tortured for eternity by the devil. How is one deemed worthy enough to get into heaven? How is one deemed unworthy of heaven and sent to hell? According to the bible in one of the most well known verses, John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life." Basically, if you believe in the lord and follow his rules, you will get into heaven. If you don't follow the rules, you will go to hell.
The belief of one god, or monotheism, is the main aspect of worship in Christianity. Their one God is also known as the messiah and the Great Spirit. According to the bible he performed a miracle and spoke out of a fire. He wrote the rules we know as the "10 Commandments" on two tablets of stones. The 10 commandments basically tell you to 1) believe in one god 2) only pray to god 3) do not use the lord's name in vain, 4) celebrate the lord on Sunday, which is a day of rest 5) honor thy parents 6) love life and living things 7) protect your family 8) do not steal 9) do not lie and 10) do not get jealous.
With the belief of Satan, or the devil, you get into a very unique issue. According to the bible, when the world was created there was one angel, Lucifer, who was known as the most beautiful angel in heaven. Lucifer was sent to hell for God believed he was too beautiful and had many faults to his person. When Lucifer fell to earth he became the only adversary to god ever to exist.
There are many beliefs in the world, Christianity and Buddhism are among the most common and most popular.