Re: Why are you a Buddhist?
I am not necassarily a buddhist, but I recently spent a great deal of time travelling in Thailand and Cambodia whose populations are almost 100% buddhist. This was the first time I have ever been inspired to convert to a religion simply by observing its followers. The unelievable contentment and humbleness of these poeple moved and inspired me. While there, I studied buddhism, relentlessly interviewed people, and spent a great deal of time in monasteries, temples and holy sites. The focus of buddhism is on the here-and-now. On being satisfied with your present and the belief that life is painful, but accepting that fact is the first step to overcoming that pain. I was truly inspired by the smiles on the faces of people who literally have nothing, and struggle sometimes just to get decent food or a roof over their head. Compare this to the Western Christian outlook and the boughts of depression triggered by trivial matters. I am still studying buddhism, but I must admit, it is a truly complicated a mystical belief system.