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Ultimate Reality and Spiritual Truths within Buddhism and Judaism

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Introduction

World Religions Ultimate Reality and Spiritual Truths within Buddhism and Judaism An integral part of all world religions is that of an ultimate reality and spiritual truths. Each world religion has its own set of spiritual truths and a belief in an ultimate reality which denotes the underlying cause of all existence and is a ground of being for each follower of the religion. All world religions also have a set of beliefs, or spiritual truths, which encompass the integral teachings of the religion. When comparing each religion's claims about ultimate reality and spiritual truths, similarities and differences arise that question the credibility of these claims. Only under closer examination can the individual understand the validity of these claims when comparing them. All world religions acknowledge an ultimate reality that is unyielding and unchanging. These ultimate realities generally take one of three forms. The first form is that of a personal being, like a loving god, who is a focal point of the religion's belief. The second form is that of an impersonal being as the target of all personal beings and the origin of all personal beings. ...read more.

Middle

Dukkha marks anything that is not satisfactory in each individual's life, whether it is physical suffering, mental suffering or change in life which causes good things to become impermanent. The Four Noble Truths: - All forms of life, particularly human life, are marked by dukkha. - Dukkha and rebirth are caused by desire for the things of this world and for the survival of the self. - Escape from dukkha - nirvana - is only possible if human desire can be eliminated. - Release from desire and from dukkha comes by following the Noble Eightfold Path. (See Understanding Faith, 2010) These noble truths and the belief in nirvana are what Buddhists turn to for spiritual guidance. Ultimate reality in Buddhism differs greatly from that in many other world religions. Like in Hinduism, Buddhists believe in reincarnation but this belief differs to Hindu's where they try to keep good karma in this life to better their position in the next. In Buddhism, the state of nirvana is reached when there is no more reincarnation for the self. Only by eliminating desire, giving up attachment to this world, rejecting the very belief that one's self is to be saved, can a person find release from the circle of reincarnation (see Understanding Faith, 2010). ...read more.

Conclusion

When looking at it in a philosophical mind-frame, the three forms of ultimate reality can be considered to just be different manifestations of the same reality. Each religion's ultimate reality can be seen as a different interpretation of the same reality and therefore neither is wrong and neither cancels out the validity of the other's claim. To understand the veracity of each claim, the individual does not need to believe in the spiritual truths and ultimate reality of every world religion, but instead simply needs to appreciate the fact that all ultimate reality beliefs and spiritual truths could stem from the same ultimate reality. All world religions carry unique beliefs in an ultimate reality. A Buddhist's ultimate reality is that of nirvana - an impersonal being, whereas the Jewish ultimate reality is that of a personal being - God. These claims on ultimate reality and spiritual truths are distinct, yet can be traced back to the same roots and treated as manifestations of the same ultimate reality. When comparing world religions, one can understand the validity or veracity of each religion's claims about ultimate reality and spiritual beliefs by looking at the bigger picture of ultimate reality. ...read more.

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