The Popularity Of Buddhism As A World Religion

908 Words Oct 6th, 2015 4 Pages
The popularity of Buddhism as a world religion is typically defined by following the tenets of Buddhism through The Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eightfold Path. These tenets define the ability of a sentient being to attain enlightenment as human being, but also in the animal world. Buddhism holds a deep respect for the intelligence of animals, which define them as sentient beings capable of enlightenment. This type of enlightenment takes place over many lifetimes through the concept of reincarnation. Buddhism acknowledges the immortality of the soul in being able to leave the body after death, and to then travel into the body of another life form. This is one way to understand the different life forms that Buddha (aka. Bodhisattva) had taken over many lifespans, which often involve taking the form of an animal. This is one reason why the Bodhisattva acknowledges the sentient presence of animals as being equal to the lives of human beings in the karmic tradition. Therefore, the Buddha defines animals as a intelligent beings with a soul, which makes them ”sentient beings” capable of enlightenment over the course of many lives. The mindfulness of animals as sentient beings is found directly in the writings about the life of the Bodhisattva. In Buddhist texts, the famous Jataka Tales of the Bodhisattva defines the premise of karma as a form of reincarnation in the Buddhist tradition. The Bodhisattva was said to have been a lion in a previous life, which states the…
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