Hinduism and Particular
Buddhism formulates itself
as Buddha Dharma, "the way or Dharma of enlightenment."
Starting as a monastic reform movement within the field of Hindu
teachings, Buddhism gradually developed a separate existence of its
own apart from the common stream of Sanatana Dharma, though it never
entirely gave up its roots.
Indian Buddhism and its
direct offshoots, like Tibetan Buddhism, contain much of the greater
Hindu tradition or Sanatana Dharma with the use of Sanskrit mantras,
Yoga techniques, Vedic fire rituals, Ayurvedic medicine and Vedic
astrology, and a common iconography and temple worship with the
Hindus. Buddhist traditions of more distant lands, like China and
Japan, maintain many of these same practices but adapted over time
to their own cultures.
Buddhism and Hinduism have
much in common and their differences are often merely semantic or
variant lines of approach. In fact there are greater differences
among teachings in each tradition than between the two, as both
traditions contain considerable diversity.
While Hindus and Buddhists
may disagree as to the nature of enlightenment or liberation, not
only with each other but among themselves, all their various
branches accept spiritual realization through meditation as the goal