Why Westerners Are Turning to Eastern Religious Traditions

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By blaine
Words 849
Pages 4
Why Westerners are turning to Eastern religious traditions Even though Christianity is still the most largely practiced religion, many Westerners are unhappy with its traditional beliefs, and are instead turning to Eastern religious views such as Hinduism and Buddhism. This is because people are interested in the spiritual practices of Eastern religions, such as yoga and meditation. Also, Westerners are threatened by the belief that their actions in this world will decide whether they spend eternity in heaven or in hell. Finally, Westerners are tired of a theistic God and all the questions that this idea of a God causes. Therefore, Westerners are turning toward Eastern religions because of its spiritual habits, its moral reasons for good behaviour, and its rejection of traditional monotheism. Followers of Western religions are raised to believe that their actions in life will affect where they spend eternity, so they behave morally to avoid damnation in hell. They align themselves with the idea of a Supreme Being responsible for all of creation and the destiny of humans’ lives on earth (Velasquez 4.5). This Supreme Being is said to be omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, and all-good. Westerners focus less on spiritual components, instead behaving to please their God through prayer and attending mass (Velasquez 4.5). The beliefs of Eastern religions, however, are completely different. Easterners live a life of discipline and moderation to ground themselves and be humble, rather than to find eternal happiness (Velasquez 4.5). Because Eastern religions believe in reincarnation, or samsara (Velasquez 4.5), they do not focus on an end product, but instead believe that their next life will be better if they behave well. This is influenced by karma, which is the notion of “sowing and reaping” (Velasquez 4.5). Also, Eastern religions reject the above…...

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