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Religion and Spirituality, Science and Philosophy Use this forum to discuss what you believe in. This is a place where everyone may share their views freely.

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Question Conversion to Buddhism - October 25th 2013, 07:11 AM

Hello there!
Alot, especially recently, I have been thinking of converting to Buddhism, and I am about 90% of the way there. I have done all sorts of research about it, so I know what it means to be buddhist. However, I have no idea what my parents are going to think about it. I live with my dad and step-mother and both of them are Christians that are intolerant of people of other religion. So, being at the moment secretly buddhist, how can I tell it to my parents? Thank you very much for your help!
Oliver


   
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Re: Conversion to Buddhism - October 25th 2013, 07:49 PM

Why do you want to convert? And why do you feel the need to tell your parents? What form of Buddhism are you thinking of? Have you ever considered being a Christian and adopting Buddhist philosophy? It's very similar.


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Re: Conversion to Buddhism - October 25th 2013, 09:10 PM

I want to convert because I have strong feelings against Christianity. It has had a bad history of corruption and I see it as quite sexist (there are more reasons that I won't say). Buddhism is the next best thing for me because a lot of the family on my mother's side (she lives in USA) are Buddhist and that way I won't be alone. I also find Buddhism to be a very nice religion with a lot of the same ethics as me. The reason I want to tell my parents (my dad and step-mother) is so that I will be able to go to places like the local Buddhist temple without fear of them finding out.


   
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Re: Conversion to Buddhism - October 26th 2013, 03:44 AM

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Originally Posted by Olivér CW View Post
I want to convert because I have strong feelings against Christianity. It has had a bad history of corruption and I see it as quite sexist (there are more reasons that I won't say).
This is a problem I see with a lot of people. They classify Christians as anyone who says, "Oh, yeah, I'm a Christian." If I say, "Hey, I'm a Christian." Then go and kill 500 people, I'm pretty sure you'd be wondering if I was really a Christian.

Popular Christianity has a bad reputation. It's not Christianity as a whole. Genuine Christians, according to the bible, are supposed to be peaceful, loving, selfless, etc. If people don't represent those attitudes, they're probably not a Christian, at least the way the bible describes it.

I think moral objections to the way a particular group of people behave is a invalid reason to leave a religion. Christianities philosophy is identical to Buddhism. The issue is the people. You could be one of the rare people who actually practice what they preach. I think the main difference between Christianity and Buddhism is the deity of Christ. If you don't believe in the deity and resurrection of Christ, then, sure, I'd consider reconverting. However, it seems it's moral issues that you have.

Part of a pious life is not judging others. When you say, "Christianity has a bad history." What about your history? What can be fixed with your history? What can you do to improve? Instead of judging a religion, look within yourself and ask what you can do. Buddhism and Christianity talk about this. Christ talks about moving the stone from your eye before looking at the pebbles in others.

You say they are sexist, well, where are you sexist in your own life? And, again, this depends on which Christians you are talking to. Perhaps it's just the ones you know. Christianity has had a great movement away from sexism and Christianity. Maybe look into a more Methodist or Wesleyan route. Try more liberal churches. Hell, there's even Buddhist Christians. You don't need to reconvert is all I'm saying.

If it's moral objections, I'd reconsider your stance before going to your parents.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olivér CW View Post
Buddhism is the next best thing for me because a lot of the family on my mother's side (she lives in USA) are Buddhist and that way I won't be alone. I also find Buddhism to be a very nice religion with a lot of the same ethics as me.
Coming from a Christian family, I could see how ethics would be aligned. I think you're looking to globally at professing Christians, and Christians who actually practice what they preach. Look up Shane Claiborne. Look up a guy named Aaron Weiss. Try Francis Chan. All I'm saying is maybe you're looking in the wrong places.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Olivér CW View Post
The reason I want to tell my parents (my dad and step-mother) is so that I will be able to go to places like the local Buddhist temple without fear of them finding out.
The best way, I think, to tell them is to be honest. Sit them down and have a discussion. But be prepared to have defenses. Don't raise your voice and remain calm. Being irritated, or argumentative is just a sign of insecurity and your parents will doubt your decision.

All in all, it sounds like your parents won't support your decision regardless, so I doubt they'd approve of going to a temple. But maybe someone else can be more of a help than myself.

And I'm going to tell you this, in case you don't know me. I'm a weak-atheist. I'm not some Christian trying to herd a lost sheep.


"For small creatures such as we the vastness is bearable only through love."
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