Compare And Contrast Eastern And Western Religions

1557 Words 6 Pages
Eastern and western religions are very different in terms of their belief systems and character. Hinduism and Taoism are the religions I looked at among the eastern religions while Islam and Christianity are among the western religions I looked at. Western and Eastern religions have similarities within their regions but differ when the regions become divided into east and west. They have different beliefs in terms of religious nature, views of God and main concerns. The religious natures between the western and eastern states are quite different in many regards. The eastern religions, Hinduism and Taoism, can be categorized as pluralistic. Hinduism concerns itself around that many paths can lead to the same summit. This means that each person …show more content…
“Islam teaches that ‘there is no God but God’ and that ‘Muhammad is God’s prophet’ (Van Voorst 297).” The Quar’an is the guide of Islam and their authority for a religious life. Smith states absolutism with, “Everything in Islam centers on its religious ultimate, God (Smith 236).” This is the only way and the only truth. Eastern and western religions also differ in the views of God. Hinduism is a polytheistic religion. Polytheism means the belief in many Gods. Hinduism can see God as one or many. Smith goes on to say, “The Hindus have represented God in innumerable forms (Smith 36).” They worship many different Gods such as Indra, the God of the Sky or Brahman, who is the ultimate God.
Taoists on the other-hand are pantheism. Pantheism is the belief that God and the universe are equivalent. The Tao Te Ching can be divided into five main parts. The Tao, Yin Yang, Wu Wei, The Sage and Te. The Tao according to Smith has three meanings, the way of ultimate reality, the way of the universe and the way of human life (Smith 198-99). The Taoists believe that the Tao is the universe therefore and the universe is the equivalence of god and that people are the equal parts of this
…show more content…
Smith describes with the phrase, “ The object of Taoism is to align one’s daily life to the Tao, to ride its boundless tide and delight in its flow (Smith 207).” To do this Taoists are to live a virtually perfect life according to the Tao Te Ching. Their goal is to become one with the cosmos and to do this they are to live by the Tao and once this is accomplished they will learn what their role is and will become one with the Tao/cosmos. The Tao is considered an eternal supreme being. They do not a creator, a beginning or end, or afterlife. Reincarnation is their eternal soul they strive for. It focuses on the life and death, which happens at the same time. Their eternal life is reincarnation to

Related Documents