this site is a buddhist education and information network
when i came to know about atheism i heard somewhere that sometimes buddhist were called atheist because, buddhism doesn't following the route what other religion does!
on that site i found a bit interesting thing,
according to them...........

Do Buddhist believe in god?

No, we do not. There are several reasons for this. The Buddha, like modern sociologists and psychologists, believed that religious ideas and especially the god idea have their origin in fear. The Buddha says:
"Gripped by fear men go to the sacred mountains,
sacred groves, sacred trees and shrines".

Dp 188

Primitive man found himself in a dangerous and hostile world, the fear of wild animals, of not being able to find enough food, of injury or disease, and of natural phenomena like thunder, lightning and volcanoes was constantly with him. Finding no security, he created the idea of gods in order to give him comfort in good times, courage in times of danger and consolation when things went wrong. To this day, you will notice that people become more religious at times of crises, you will hear them say that the belief in a god or gods gives them the strength they need to deal with life. You will hear them explain that they believe in a particular god because they prayed in time of need and their prayer was answered. All this seems to support the Buddha’s teaching that the god-idea is a response to fear and frustration. The Buddha taught us to try to understand our fears, to lessen our desires and to calmly and courageously accept the things we cannot change. He replaced fear, not with irrational belief but with rational understanding.

The second reason the Buddha did not believe in a god is because there does not seem to be any evidence to support this idea. There are numerous religions, all claiming that they alone have god’s words preserved in their holy book, that they alone understand god’s nature, that their god exists and that the gods of other religions do not. Some claim that god is masculine, some that she is feminine and others that it is neuter. They are all satisfied that there is ample evidence to prove the existence of their god but they laugh in disbelief at the evidence other religions use to prove the existence of another god. It is not surprising that with so many different religions spending so many centuries trying to prove the existence of their gods that still no real, concrete, substantial or irrefutable evidence has been found. Buddhists suspend judgement until such evidence is forthcoming.

The third reason the Buddha did not believe in a god is that the belief is not necessary. Some claim that the belief in a god is necessary in order to explain the origin on the universe. But this is not so. Science has very convincingly explained how the universe came into being without having to introduce the god-idea. Some claim that belief in god is necessary to have a happy, meaningful life. Again we can see that this is not so. There are millions of atheists and free-thinkers, not to mention many Buddhists, who live useful, happy and meaningful lives without belief in a god. Some claim that belief in god’s power is necessary because humans, being weak, do not have the strength to help themselves. Once again, the evidence indicates the opposite. One often hears of people who have overcome great disabilities and handicaps, enormous odds and difficulties, through their own inner resources, through their own efforts and without belief in a god. Some claim that god is necessary in order to give man salvation. But this argument only holds good if you accept the theological concept of salvation and Buddhists do not accept such a concept. Based on his own experience, the Buddha saw that each human being had the capacity to purify the mind, develop infinite love and compassion and perfect understanding. He shifted attention from the heavens to the heart and encouraged us to find solutions to our problems through self-understanding.

so what u say?

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Comment by Scott M on November 11, 2009 at 3:04pm
I say that buddhism doesn't require a belief in a god and yes there is certainly a case to be made for the Buddhas-as-an-atheist. However this does not mean that "buddhism is atheistic" because we can clearly point out examples of buddhist sects that do worship actual divine beings. As for what the Buddha would say on this, I would expect he'd tell you to stop obsessing over it and get to work on your own enlightenment.
Comment by Tony Russo on November 11, 2009 at 12:59pm
As Ted said, Buddhism is as fractured as Christianity. Also, like Christianity, it concerns itself with performing well on one level of being to reach a different level (even if for some Buddhists that level is non-being).
I think, and this goes to John's comments as well, the fact that there's an endgame is what defines religion - If you do X, then Y will happen. John's librarian friend could not seriously claim that the endgame of atheism is there is no endgame.
Atheism is the endorsement that this realm of existence is real AND the only one. Nothing metaphysical (I refuse to accept that conscience is a metaphysical concept) fits into our statements about behavior.
Comment by Ted Nunn on November 11, 2009 at 8:31am
I studied Buddhism for awhile and attended a couple of different sanghas in my travels. The last Buddhist retreat I attended was my last. There was a lot of what I perceived as praying to different deities - "Tara" is the one I remember most. Lots of chanting and worship. When I asked the leader about this, he explained that Buddhism was adapted as it moved from culture to culture to fit in with the prevailing form of worship as a way of making Buddhism more acceptable to the locals. They could get the teaching of the Buddha and not have to give up their deities!

Buddhism is like most other religions in that there are multiple sects with different practices. However, IMHO, a sect that worships and prays to deities for intervention in humanly affairs in not Buddhism.



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