22+ Differences Between Buddhism And Christianity

Religions can be pretty confusing to understand, especially for those with a non-religious background. Buddhism and Christianity are two widely practiced religions that may sound like synonyms but are not.

The major difference between Buddhism and Christianity is that the former worship Buddha whereas the latter worships Jesus Christ.

Both religions are similar yet different in their teachings and culture. Let us dig deeper into Buddhism and Christianity and understand the differences. 

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Key Differences –

Buddhism –

  1. The life and teachings of Buddha are a base for Buddhism. 
  2. Buddhism comes in the category of Dharmic Religions. 
  3. People who follow Buddhism are known as Buddhists. 
  4. Around three hundred to four hundred million people worldwide follow Buddhism. 
  5. Buddhists do not believe that there is one God; instead, they work on achieving salvation through Nirvana. 

Christianity –

  1. The life and teachings of Jesus Christ are a base for Christianity. 
  2. Christianity comes in the category of Abrahamic Religions.
  3. People who follow Christianity are known as Christians. 
  4. More than two billion people worldwide follow Christianity. 
  5. Christians believe in God above all. They believe it’s God who created the world and humankind, and every creature present on this planet is responsible to him.

Comparison Between Buddhism And Christianity

ParameterBuddhismChristianity
MeaningA Religion that revolves around the life and teachings of Lord Buddha.A Religion that revolves around the life and teaching of Lord Christ. 
FounderIt is believed that Lord Siddhartha Buddha is the founder of Buddhism. It is believed that Lord Jesus Christ is the founder of Christianity. 
Place of OriginBuddhism has its roots in the Indian Subcontinent. Christianity has its roots in Judea, and Rome. 
CategoryBuddhism comes into the category of Dharmic Religions. Christianity comes into the category of Abrahamic Religions. 
Holy BookThe holy book of Buddhists is Tripitaka. The holy book of Christians is Bible. 
PurposeThe aim of Buddhism is to let its followers end their cycle of Rebirth by achieving Nirvana. The aim of Christianity is to let its followers serve, love, obey, and follow Jesus Christ. 
FollowersBuddhism following people are known as Buddhists. Christianity following people are known as Christians. 
PopulationGlobally, there are around two hundred to four hundred million people who follow Buddhism. Globally, there are around one to two billion people who follow Christianity. 
BranchesTheravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana are the three branches of Buddhism. Catholicism, Orthodox Christianity, and Protestantism are the three branches of Christianity. 
Places of WorshipBuddhists worship in Temples, Shrines, and Buddhism Monasteries. Christians worship in Churches, Chapels, Cathedrals, and Basilicas. 
GodBuddhism does not believe in the concept of God. It neither portrays its founder as God. Christians highly believe in God. They believe he is above all and everything. They also believe it is only him that can save one from evil eyes. 
LanguagesPali and Sanskrit are the official languages of Buddhism. Aramaic, Greek, and Latin are the official languages of Christianity. 
Vegetarian DietBuddhists only thrive on a vegetarian diet.There are no restrictions on food in Christianity. 
End of RebirthsBuddhists believe by achieving Nirvana, one can stop the continuous cycle of Rebirths. Christians believe it is Reincarnation, Hell or Heaven after death. 
CountriesCountries where Buddhists are in majority are Thailand, and Cambodia, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, China, Vietnam, Myanmar, Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Mongolia, etc. Countries where Christians are in majority are the United States of America, Europe, United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand.

Major Differences Between Buddhism And Christianity

What exactly is Buddhism?

Buddhism is a Dharmic Religion that originated in the Indian Subcontinent. Prince Siddhartha Buddha is known as the founder of Buddhism.

Buddhism revolves around the life and teachings of Lord Buddha. Buddhists do not have they believe in the concept of God. Buddhism is a rather way of living life that focuses on achieving Enlightenment through Nirvana. 

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Features and Facts about Buddhism –

  1. Prince Siddhartha Buddha is known as the founder of Buddhism. Though it should be noted that he never called himself God, instead people formed Buddhism after Buddha achieved Nirvana or Enlightenment. 
  2. The Indian Subcontinent is the place of origin of Buddhism. 
  3. The Buddhists worship in temples, shrines, and monasteries. 
  4. Buddhists believe in Rebirth. They believe the cycle of birth is continuous and the only way to end this cycle is through Nirvana. 
  5. The purpose of Buddhism is to help its followers to achieve Nirvana and end the cycle of Rebirths. 
  6. There are estimated to be at least 300 – 400 million Buddhists worldwide. 
  7. Tripitaka is the Holy Scripture of Buddhism. 
  8. Mahayana, Theravada, and Vajrayana are the three main branches of Buddhism, with Mahayana and Theravada being the most followed branches of Buddhism. 
  9. Buddhism does not see any problem if someone wants to follow any other religion along with Buddhism. 
  10. Some of the countries which have a major number of Buddhists are Thailand, Cambodia, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, China, Vietnam, Myanmar, Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Mongolia, etc. 

What exactly is Christianity?

Christianity is an Abrahamic Religion and the largest religion in the world, with followers of around Two to three billion people worldwide.

Jesus Christ is considered the founder of Christianity. It revolves around the life and teachings of Lord Jesus Christ. Christians believe in God and consider him above all and everything. They also believe in Good deeds and Sinful actions. 

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Features and Facts about Christianity –

  1. The Lord Jesus Christ is known as the founder of Christianity. 
  2. Judea, a Roman Province, is known as the place of origin of Christianity. 
  3. Christians worship in churches, basilica, chapels, and cathedrals. 
  4. Christians do not believe in the concept of Rebirths. Instead, they believe in Heaven and Hell. 
  5. The purpose of Christianity is to make the followers connect with Lord and love and obey him. It also tells its followers to spread Jesus’s life and teachings to others so that they can be saved too. 
  6. There are estimated one to two billion followers of Christianity worldwide. 
  7. Bible is the holy scripture of Christianity. 
  8. Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox are the three main branches of Christianity, with Catholicism and Protestantism being the most followed branches. 
  9. Christianity does not believe in following more than one religion. It believes no other religion takes a person to God. 
  10. Some of the countries which have a major number of Christian followers are the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. 

Contrast Between Buddhism And Christianity

Origin Of The Word

  • Buddhism – The word Buddha originated from the Sanskrit word “Budh,” which means “to awaken, to know, to become aware.”
  • Christianity – The word Christian originated from the Latin word “Christianus,” which means “a follower of Christ.” 

Meaning

  • Buddhism – Buddhism refers to a Dharmic Religion that revolves around the life and teachings of Lord Buddha. 
  • Christianity – Christianity refers to an Abrahamic Religion that revolves around the life and teachings of Lord Jesus Christ. 

Place Of Origin

  • Buddhism – Buddhism is believed to be originated in the Indian Subcontinent. 
  • Christianity – Christianity is believed to be originated in Judea, Rome. 

Founder

  • Buddhism – The Lord Buddha or Prince Siddhartha Buddha is known as the founder of Buddhism. 
  • Christianity – The Lord Jesus Christ is known as the founder of Christianity. 

Category

  • Buddhism – Buddhism comes into the category of Dharmic Religions. 
  • Christianity – Christianity comes into the category of Abrahamic Religions.

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Difference between Dharmic and Abrahamic Religions –

Dharmic Religions –

  1. Dharmic Religions are those religions that have originated from the Indian Subcontinent. 
  2. Dharmic Religions operate on the belief of Pluralism. 
  3. There is no Circumcision ceremony in Dharmic Religions. 
  4. Followers of Dharmic Religions were cremated when they died. 
  5. Examples include Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism. 

Abrahamic Religions –

  1. Abrahamic Religions are those religions that have their original roots in Abraham. 
  2. Abrahamic Religions operate on the belief of Exclusivists. 
  3. There is a Circumcision ceremony in Abrahamic Religions. 
  4. Followers of Abrahamic Religions are buried when died. 
  5. Examples include Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. 

Followers

  • Buddhism – The followers of the Buddhism religion are known as Buddhists. 
  • Christianity – The followers of the Christianity religion are known as Christians. 

The Population Of Followers

  • Buddhism – There are estimated to be 200 to 400 million Buddhists all over the world.
  • Christianity – There are estimated to be 1 to 2 billion Christians all over the world. 

Place Of Worship

  • Buddhism – Shrines, Temples, and Buddhists Monasteries are the places of Worship in Buddhism. 
  • Christianity – Churches, Chapels, Basilica, and Cathedrals are the places of Worship in Christianity. 

Holy Book

  • Buddhism – Tripitaka is the holy book of Buddhists. 
  • Christianity – Bible is the holy book of Christians. 

Rebirth

  • Buddhism – Buddhists believe that the cycle of Rebirth is continuous and never stops. After death, birth begins again, and this cycle never stops. Buddhists believe that the only way to stop the continuous cycle of Rebirth is by attaining Nirvana or Enlightenment. 
  • Christianity – Christians believe that a dead person serves in heaven or hell or comes back through Reincarnation. 

Holy Trinity

  • Buddhism – Buddhists do not believe in the concept of the Holy Trinity. 
  • Christianity – Christians have their utter belief in the concept of the Holy Trinity. 

Purpose

  • Buddhism – The sole purpose of Buddhism is to attain Nirvana or Enlightenment. Buddhism does not believe in God, nor does it want its followers to worship him. Buddhism’s only purpose is to help its followers achieve Nirvana and end their continuous cycle of Rebirth. 
  • Christianity – The sole purpose of Christianity is to serve God. Christians believe it’s God who created the world and life and every living creature is responsible to him. Thus, all the creatures should devote themselves to him, love him, and obey his commands. 

Branches

  • Buddhism – There are three branches of Buddhism: Mahayana, Theravada, and Vajrayana. These branches of Buddhism are known as “Vehicles” because they are seen as a way of taking people from suffering to Nirvana. 
  • Christianity – There are three branches of Christianity: Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox. 

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Branches of Buddhism and Christianity –

Buddhism –

  1. Theravada – It is the oldest branch of Buddhism, which claims to have the original teachings of the Lord Buddha. This branch and its teachings are written in the Pali language during the time 35 – 32 B.C.
  2. Mahayana – This branch of Buddhism is known as the “Great Vehicle.” It came into light during the 100 – 500 A.D., and all of its scriptures are written in the Sanskrit language. 
  3. Vajrayana – This branch of Buddhism is known as the “Diamond Vehicle,” which came into light during the 300 – 700 A.D. It is also known as Buddhism’s magic and mystery school. 

Christianity –

  1. Catholic – It is the first and the oldest form of Christianity, which was formed immediately after the death of Jesus Christ. The catholic church is situated in the Vatican and is more than two thousand years old. 
  2. Orthodox – Orthodox Christianity originated from Catholic Christianity; thus, both have many similarities. Orthodox Christianity was created because some people just did not accept things that the Roman Catholic Church imposed. 
  3. Protestantism – This is one of the most influential branches of Christianity, which was formed by Martin Luther in the 1500s. There was not any head of the Protestants Churches because they considered only God as their head. 

Following More Than One Religion

  • Buddhism – Buddhism does not see any problem in following more than one religion. 
  • Christianity – Christianity believes that all the other religions are false and do not take humans closer to God. Christians consider their religion above all and do not accept following more than one religion. 

Marriage

  • Buddhism – Buddhists, Monks, and Nuns normally do not get married. Instead, they take a celibacy vow. 
  • Christianity – Unlike Buddhism, Christians believe in marriage. It is, in fact, their holy sacrament known as Matrimony. This sacrament asks all Christians to marry and devote themselves to their partners in sickness and health. It sees marriage as the purest form of human love. 

Holy Salvation

  • Buddhism – Buddhism, and Buddhists believe that the only way to be free from evil eyes is through the means of Nirvana or Enlightenment. 
  • Christianity – Christianity or Christians believe that the only way to be free from evil eyes is through Jesus’s passion, death, and Resurrection. 

God

  • Buddhism – Buddhism does not believe in the concept of God. Buddhists do not consider God to be above all. Even though they worship Buddha, they don’t consider him as God. Buddhism can go on even without Lord Buddha. 
  • Christianity – Christianity believes that God is above all and everything. They worship, love, obey, and serve him by all means. 

Spiritual Beings

  • Buddhism – Buddhas, Devas, Gods, Goddesses, and Bodhisattvas are the spiritual beings which that Buddhism and Buddhists believe in. 
  • Christianity – Angels, Spirits, and Demons are the spiritual beings that Christianity and Christians believe in. 

Practices

  • Buddhism – The main practices of Buddhism include Meditation, Right Concentration, Right Mindfulness, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Speech, Right Effort, Right Aspiration, Right View, and Eightfold Path. 
  • Christianity – The main practices of Christianity include Sacraments, Prayers & Worshipping in Church, Communion, Reading Bible, and Charity. 

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Religious Practices of Buddhism and Christianity –

Buddhism –

  • Meditation
  • The Eightfold Path
  • Right Concentration
  • Right Mindfulness
  • Right Action
  • Right Aspiration
  • Right Speech
  • Right Livelihood
  • Right Effort
  • Right View

Christianity –

  • Praying 
  • Worshipping in Churches
  • Sacraments
  • Communion
  • Reading Bible
  • Charity

Languages

  • Buddhism – Pali, and Sanskrit are considered the official languages of Buddhism and Buddhists. 
  • Christianity – Latin, Greek, and Aramaic are considered the official languages of Christianity and Christians. 

Vegetarian Diet

  • Buddhism – Buddhists stay only on a vegetarian diet. They never consume Non – A vegetarian diet. 
  • Christianity – Christians eat both vegetarian and non – vegetarian diets. There is not any restriction on it. 

Sinful Actions

  • Buddhism – Just like God, Buddhism and Buddhists do not believe in the concept of Sinful Actions. 
  • Christianity – According to Christianity, all the sins conducted by people can be forgiven. In Christianity, normally, people go to priests to confess their sins and seek forgiveness. 

Life After Death

  • Buddhism – Buddhists believe after death, a person has to go through a continuous cycle of Rebirths. 
  • Christianity – Christians believe after death, a person lives in heaven or hell or takes birth again. 

Nirvana

  • Buddhism – Buddhists highly believe in the concept of Nirvana. 
  • Christianity – Christians do not believe in the concept of Nirvana. 

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What is Nirvana?

Nirvana is a state of mind that is at peace and happiness after giving up all the personal desires one had. According to Buddhism, the state of Nirvana can be attained by constant meditation. That is one of the reasons meditation is a major practice of Buddhism. 

“I call it Nirvana, the complete destruction of the old age and dying” – Siddhartha Buddha.

Countries

  • Buddhism – Some of the countries with a major number of Buddhists are Thailand, Cambodia, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, China, Vietnam, Myanmar, Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Mongolia, etc. 
  • Christianity – Countries with a major number of Christians are Europe, the United States of America, Australia, and New Zealand. 

Conclusion

Christianity and Buddhism are two widely practiced religions worldwide. Both religions have a varied number of differences between them. Buddhism revolves around the peace and calmness of the human mind. On the other hand, Christianity revolves around God.

The major difference between Buddhism and Christianity is that the former focuses on the life and the teachings of Lord Siddhartha Buddha, whereas the latter focuses on the life and teachings of Lord Jesus Christ. 


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. What is the purpose of Buddhism?

Buddhism believes that it is Nirvana or Enlightenment that stops the continuous cycle of Rebirths.

Buddhism’s sole purpose is to help its followers gain Nirvana and end their suffering & continuous cycle of Rebirths. 

Q2. What is Holy Trinity?

Holy Trinity is a Christian concept that the Christian God exists in three divine persons, i.e., God, the father; God, the son; God, the holy spirit sharing one homoousion.

It believes that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit all three reside in Jesus. 

Q3. What are Dharmic and Abrahamic Religions?

Religions having roots of their origin in the Indian Subcontinent are known as Dharmic Religions. Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, and Sikhism are Dharmic Religions. 

Q4. What are the major differences between Buddhism and Christianity?

The major differences between Buddhism and Christianity are –

1. Buddhism was founded by Lord Siddhartha Buddha and had its roots in the Indian Subcontinent. On the other hand, Christianity was founded by Lord Jesus Christ and has its roots in Judea, Rome. 
2. Buddhism revolves around the life and teachings of Lord Siddhartha Buddha, whereas Christianity revolves around the life and techniques of Lord Jesus Christ. 
3. Buddhism is a Dharmic Religion, while Christianity is an Abrahamic Religion. 
4. Buddhism does not believe in the concept of God, whereas Christianity believes God is above all and everything. 
5. Buddhism’s purpose is to help its followers break the cycle of Rebirths by attaining Nirvana or Enlightenment, whereas Christianity’s purpose is to serve, love, and obey God. 


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