Does a religion require a belief in a supreme being? Is Buddhism, or Scientology a reDoes a religion require a belief in a supreme being? Is Buddhism, or Scientology a religion? The web site Dictionary.com defines Buddhism as a religion and Scientology as a non-denominational movement. Why aren't they calling Scientology a religion too? The definition of religion on dictionary.com seems vague. It appears that they don't know how to define religion, but know one when they see it which is why Buddhism counts as a religion but Scientology doesn't. Maybe it has to do with how long it's been around. The idea of Buddhism being an atheist religion seems like B/S to me.

Tags: Atheism, Phylosophy, Religion, Spirituality, Words

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There are different sects of Buddhism just like any other religion. Theravada Buddhism does not recognize a supreme being but others such as Mahayana recognize the Buddha himself as a deity. 

Also, I would say that any belief system that deals with the question of life after death constitutes religion. In Buddhism, you have reincarnation. In Scientology, people are immortal beings. 

Scientology is really bad Sci-fi passing itself off as a belief system, but then again, aren't they all?

I prefer to expand on a definition of the late American author, H.L. Mencken.

Religion is the haunting fear that somewhere, someone might be happy.

That's funny and true at least for for the Islamic religions. 

Whoops, I meant to write Abrahamic religions rather than Islamic religions.

Here is H.L. Mencken again.

We must respect the other fellow's religion, but only in the sense and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children smart.

It isn't coincidence that that banner went up in 1963. School prayer was banned by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1963.

The U. S. Supreme Court issued two bans on prayer in public schools. The first ban came in 1962 and the second was issued in 1963. The bans were the result of a court case sponsored in part by Madalyn Murray O'Hair. She was but one of the litigants in the lawsuit, but her name became synonymous with the case and the promotion of atheism. The ban not only outlawed prayer in public schools but it also banned Bible reading in public schools. 

The problem happens when he enters his wife in a beauty contest then becomes outraged that I didn't vote for her.

It's simple.  Religion is the infection, and jesus is the cure.  They're on "opposite spectrums"!

But really, even the wiki entry on religion doesn't help.

It's definitions like these that cause religious people to consider Atheism a religion.  

Atheism isn't a religion, but maybe there is one about adherence to logic and the scientific method or even some system of morality also based on those that most atheists follow.  But since we don't know the definition of religion, then again maybe there isn't.

In a nutshell, a religion is a philosophycal belief system.

If you are looking for a good definition of religion, then I recommend Dan Dennets "Breaking The Spell".In it he has just a few simple clearly defined criteria that seemed to me anyway of doing an excellent job of clarifyinge precisely what was and wasn't a religion.

How long they had been around and how many practitioners there were might have minor criteria. But the main one, as I recall, was a belief in the supernatural.

Belief that Elvis is still alive did not quite make it, as it did not make one of the more minor criteria. But mostly belief in supernatural qualified something as a religion, and it was not a religion w/o this.

So like Jason Fleming explained, some forms of Bhudism are a religion, and those that deal only w training ones mind towards certain goals thru meditation are not.

One of the primary aspects of Scientology is training ones mind to become "clear". And , I think, they employ some type of brain scan to help w this. Possibly Scientology was not considered a religion as only these traits were considered. More likely tho, it did not make the cut simply because whoever made t decision not to include it simply did not afford it t respect he gave other religions for no reason more valid than that it has not been around as long as most religions.

Also while Scientology is filled totally w beliefs utterly ridiculous, I don't know that too many of them qualify as outright supernatural. This tho is probably due mostly to my ignorance regarding scientology beliefs. I know they believe certain alien races came to Earth long ago and that the conflict these aliens were having has affected mankinds destiny somehow,along w something about a huge volcanic eruption.

I don't know of any evidence to support any of these beliefs. But I don't know either that any of their beliefs are beyond natural possibilities.

But again, I know only just so much about Scientology. I think Dan Dennett classified it as a religion. And, I think, he would know more than me on the matter.

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