3 easy steps show how to become a Buddhist
A Buddhist is an individual who believes in Buddhism philosophies and applies the Buddhism doctrines into daily life. In order to become a Buddhist, it is necessary to know about the core belief of Buddhism and apply them to everyday activities. Hereby, A Buddhist shows you the detail guidance on how to become a Buddhist.
3 Easy Steps Show How To Become A Buddhist
There are 3 basic requirements to become a Buddhist.
- Understanding about The Core Buddhist Philosophy: The Nobel Eightfold Path, the Four Noble Truths, Karma & Reincarnation, and Nirvana
- Joining the Shanga or Buddhist community
- Applying the Buddhism philosophies to daily life
Let’s get started to discover Buddhism life.
Understanding about The Core Buddhist Philosophy
Reading the story about the Buddha life
First of all, it is vital to know the story of the Buddha Siddhartha Gautama. You can find it easily by searching the keyword “Buddha story”, “Buddha history”, “GautamaBuddhahistory”. The Buddha life is a very practical example of the Buddhist philosophy.
Understanding the Four Noble Truths
After taking the first step to the Buddha world, you should learn about the Four Noble Truth or The Path of Truth. By this pathway, the Buddha had discovered the timeless philosophies of life. This consist of the truth of suffering, the truth of the root of all suffering in this life, the truth of the end of suffering, and the truth of the best way to get escape from all suffering in this life.
Studying about The Noble Eightfold Path
Then, it is vital to learn about the Noble Eightfold Path. Generally, the Noble Eightfold Path is called the door to the Enlightenment. This is really the Dharma door that the Buddha had opened and experienced. According to the Noble Eightfold Path, each and every Buddhist must practice the correct view, correct thought, correct speech, correct actions, correct means of conducting, correct effort and correct mindfulness.
Being Aware of Karma
Next, each Buddhism learner should be aware of Karma. Karma is an extremely important term in Buddhism doctrines. In a simple manner, Karma means volitional action and it is closely related to the reincarnation and the Nirvana. By being aware of Karma, each Buddhist can learn to maintain the positive attitude in life and plant the seeds of good Karma as well as prevent the bad seeds of Karma.
Understanding about The Nivarna
After enlightenment, the Buddha attain the Nirvana. Literally, Nirvana is the highest state of freedom from all suffering that Buddhists wish to achieve. And the Buddha was the first one who had experienced this great state.
Getting Used to Some Popular Buddhism Terms
Besides acknowledging these basic and core Buddhism philosophies, it is very useful for those who look to further information about the Buddhism world to understand the meaning of the most popular terms in Buddhism.
- Samsara: The cycle of rebirth or the endless reincarnation of sentient beings. This term often occurs in the subject of Karma, reincarnation, and suffering.
- Nirvana: The extinguishing of the fires that causes rebirths and associated suffering. This is the definitely free state from all pains and suffering. Nirvana is a spiritual bliss and also the ultimate purpose of Buddhism.
- Arhat: An individual who attains a state of Nivarna but still not becomes the Buddha.
- Buddha nature: The seed of enlightenment is available to all human beings.
- Bodhisattva: A Buddhist who is on the way to enlightenment.
- Dharma: The teachings of the Buddha. It is a very subtle and complex term. And in a simple manner, it can be understood as the right things. For examples, “Living the Dharma life” is to live the right and meaningful life.
- Sutras: A sacred Buddhist text or the records of the oral teaching of the Buddha.
- Sangha: The Buddhist community.
- Mantra: The method of protecting mind for the Buddhists. The verbal mantra is the most popular type of mantra that is used in the Buddhist community.
Having The Basic Knowledge of Various Buddhist Sect
Buddhism came from India, however, it has divided into various sects while being spread to other countries over the time. They are Zen Buddhism, Esoteric Buddhism, Tibet Buddhism, etc. And each sect had the long history, thus, the beginners to Buddhism just need to have enough overview knowledge about this subject.
Joining The Sangha or Buddhist Community
Step by step, let you start to join in the Shanga. The easiest way to begin is to find the nearby temples or pagodas. Hereby some suggestions for you to experience the strong connection with the Buddhists community.
- Visiting the various temple, pagodas and considering which places that makes you feel most comfortable and closed.
- Talking with the Buddhism monks or other Buddhists.
- Attending some specific classes in the temples or pagodas.
- Making friends with other Buddhists.
- Asking the Buddhism Monk about the Buddhism doctrines and Buddhist life.
Besides that, in order to become an official Buddhist, it requires to take refuge in the Triple Gem (the Buddha, the Dharma, Sangha). You will be asked to undergo a ceremony whereby you vow to follow the Five Precepts absolutely. These Five Precepts are no killing others sentient beings, no stealing, no committing sexual misconduct, no telling lie, and no consuming intoxicants.
To some extents, taking refuge to Triple Gem officially is a formal way to show that you are really a Buddist in the Buddhist community. However, it does not mean you are not a Buddhist if you do not take part in this ceremony. In fact, the prerequisite thing of the Buddhist life is to live the Dharma life. As long as you maintain upholding the Five Precepts, you are really a Buddhist.
In the opposite point of view, if you do not have chances to come to the local nearby temples or pagodas, it will not mean you are not a Buddhist. According to the Buddha, Buddha nature is inside your nature. If you really look forward to becoming a Buddhist and practicing the Buddhism philosophies every day, from inside your mind to your daily activities, it will be the meaningful way to show that you are a Buddhist.
Applying The Buddhism Philosophies to Daily Life and Becoming a Buddhist
Finally, a Buddhist must follow the rules of the Buddhism. Each Buddhist does not violate the Five Precepts and make effort to maintain a Dharma life. For examples:
- Studying Buddhism regularly and inspiring others to learn Buddhism.
- Taking part in the Buddhist community’ activities like going sightseeing the temples, pagodas, or doing volunteer for the temples, pagodas.
- Practicing the Noble Eightfold Path.
- Planting good seeds of Karma by helping others.
- Attending the short–term meditation courses, cultivating classes of the Buddhist community.
- Maintaining a loving kindness for people and life.
- Assisting to build the temples or pagodas or helping the Buddhism monks in daily lives.
In conclusion, Buddhism is a great religion that inspires the humanity to live positively. Therefore, it is not difficult for those who hope to become a Buddhist. Obviously, all of us have Buddha nature and the only thing that we should do is to awake, nourish, and develop our Buddha nature. This is really the meaning of becoming a Buddhist in real life.