Teachings of Jesus and Buddha Compared.
Buddhism and Christianity would appear to have little in common. One is non-theistic for instance, the other, monotheistic. Although it is not correct to speak of Buddhism as an "atheistic" religion, it is a religion whose chief focus is on man rather than on any god. The Buddhist Annual of Ceylon defines Buddhism as "that religion which without starting with a God leads man to a stage where God's help is not necessary." Buddha himself, coming out of a background of polytheistic Hinduism, seems to have treated even Brahma, one of the highest of the gods, with disdain. Buddha did not deny the existence of gods, but he considered them only as the higher grade of living beings, also to be taught by him. Jesus, came out of a monotheistic culture, and continued to teach that there is only one God. .
Another difference is what happens after death. The entity which survives death is known as 'The Soul' by Christians and as 'The Very Subtle Mind' by Buddhists. The terms 'Soul' and 'Mind' are not equivalent. The soul does not exist preceding this life; the mind has had countless previous lives. The soul has a one-shot chance of salvation. It is judged at end of this life and either goes to heaven or hell, if the mind does not achieve enlightenment in this life, it will have further rebirths. The soul comes into the world contaminated with sin, which it has inherited from Adam following the fall from grace. Without the intervention of salvation it is surely destined for hell. The mind comes into the world bearing positive and negative imprints from its previous existences.
Many sayings of Jesus and the Buddha have much in common. The following are some examples: Jesus: "Do to others as you would have them do to you." Luke 6:31 Buddha: "Consider others as yourself." Dhammapada 10:1 Jesus: "If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also." Luke 6:29 Buddha: "If anyone should give you a blow with his hand, with a stick, or with a knife, you should abandon any desires and utter no evil words.