What makes Hinduism different from Buddhism?
Although many would say that Buddhism and Hinduism are similar, several yet significant differences have been noticed in their doctrines, beliefs and religious practices. There is one big difference that separated the two religions; a prophet or person did not find Hinduism, instead it is believed to be that Hinduism began when Aryans added the gods of the IndusValley people to their own after which other people began to bring in other gods, beliefs, and practices as well.
The core belief of Hinduism is that the entire universe is part of the unchanging, all-powerful spiritual force called Brahman. Unlike Hinduism where they believe in gods and the almighty goddesses, Siddhartha Gautama, who is now also known as Buddha, founded Buddhism.
Unlike Hinduism that believes in the supremacy and efficacy of the Vedas (the most sacred scriptures), Buddhists do not hold any believe on Vedas or any other scripture of the Hindu. Additionally, Buddhists believe that anyone can gain entry into Nirvana, regardless of his/her status, but Hinduism makes it clear that only Brahmins (priests) could enter Nirvana and achieve moksha. Buddhists rejected the caste system where priests (Brahmins) would dominate the lowly worshippers and instead they focused on individuals.
Did geography and culture play a role in the spread of Buddhism?
So how exactly did so many people follow Buddhism and Buddha himself? Many people believe that Buddhism became popular in India, because it freed people from the oppression and spiritual baggage to which Hinduism associated with. Furthermore, Buddha’s teachings were more intuitive and gave the Indian people hope and aspiration which Hinduism did not offer. Finally, Buddhism spread within India and beyond because it gained political favor from the Indian rulers and civilians over Buddhism.