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Faith and Doctrine
A couple of times recently, in regard to (a) Islam, and (b) Christianity, I've passed comment on the distance between the doctrines of religions, and the understandings of ordinary believers.
"During six years of working in Thai villages and living within the Thai community in Bangkok, I met no lay person who knew more than the Buddhist equivalent of Sunday-school stories about the teachings of his religion. The Buddhist texts are indeed as harrowingly complex as Mr. Barnes says, and the practice of Buddhist meditation can be a profound intellectual and spiritual experience, but reading the texts and meditating are optional. Being a Buddhist in good standing is easy."