Buddhism and Christianity have some slight similarities, but are vastly different in respect to the spiritual perspective and approach to healing. Buddhism does not necessarily encompass a spiritual perspective and is based on The Four Noble Truths set forth by founder, Siddhartha Gautama. Gautama achieved self-salvation through meditation and had an epiphany about how to be free of suffering. In doing so, he became the “Enlightened One” and was hence known as the Buddha. The truths revolve around suffering and are: the truth of suffering, the truth of the cause of suffering, the truth of the end of suffering, and the truth of the path that leads to the end of suffering. The Buddha's Four Noble Truths can be said to be a type of formula for healing. In these truths is the recognition of the cause of ...view middle of the document...
In both religions, the healing of the body is not just physical, but also spiritual. Both religions believe in physical healing by way of a spiritual connection, however, in Buddhism the body acts with the mind and in Christianity, the body acts with God. Buddhism is a seemingly individual religion that focuses on the person, their mind and their actions, with their health care approach mirroring this. “Buddhism asserts that for lasting healing to occur, it is necessary to heal not only the current disease with medicines and other forms of treatment, but also the cause of the disease, which originates from the mind.” (Hawter, 1995) They focus large amounts of attention on gaining inner clarity and finding peace to end their suffering. “From the Buddhist perspective, the mind is the creator of sickness and health. In fact, the mind is believed to be the creator of all of our problems. That is, the cause of disease is internal, not external.” (Hawter, 1995) In contrast, Christianity is a group and/or family oriented religion. In sickness, Christians can call on others to pray for and with them, and seek God’s wisdom and strength to help them in their time of need. The Bible states: “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:15 And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up.” (James 5: 14-15) Both religions will seek out health care when needed, however the Buddhist’s seem to rely more on natural and alternative medicine such as massage, acupuncture and herbs as opposed to the ‘western medicine’ that Christians utilize.
Hawter, Pende. (1995). Healing: A Tibetan Buddhist Perspective. Retrieved on May 30, 2012 from: http://www.buddhanet.net/tib_heal.htm
The Holy Bible. King James Version. Retrieved on May 30, 2012 from: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=james%205&version=KJV