For many reasons, I don't write as much about Buddhism as I do other major world faiths, partly because demographically Buddhism ranks in size behind Christianity, Islam and Hinduism and is not as deeply woven into the American religious fabric and my own personal experience as Judaism.
But I thought this weekend I'd give you some links to information about this fascinating religion, which some of its adherents think is not a religion at all but a way of life. They shy away from calling it a religion because it does not postulate the existence of a god.
Over at Beliefnet.com, blogger Reed Hall, who teaches world religions, writes "Religion 101." He'll often take two, three or five posts to give readers basic information about a religion.
It's relatively brief and clearly written, so I'm going to link you to his four posts about Buddhism.
In No. 1, he offers some basic demographic material.
In No. 2, he notes that Buddhism, like all other major religions, is not monolithic, having various divisions and even differences in beliefs.
In No. 3, he digs a bit deeper and mentions the three major branches of Buddhism, focusing on one of them.
And in No. 4, he offers information about the other two branches of Buddhism.
Some observers have called Buddhism one of the fastest-growing religions (sic?) in America and have called Los Angeles a Buddhist city.
So learn a bit about Buddhism this weekend if you don't know much. You may well discover that some of your neighbors are adherents.
* * *P.S.: KEYSTONE, Colo. -- I'm here in Colorado for a few days preparing for this seminar on forgiveness that I'll co-teach at Kirkridge Retreat Center in Pennsylvania, so while I'm gone you won't find a second blog item here. I hope you'll join me at Kirkridge the weekend of April 26-28.