Is Buddhism a Religion or a Philosophy?
This all depends on to whom one is talking. It’s actually neither. One could say that Buddhism is a series of steps to realising extremely subtle awareness – pure reality. This is Dzgochen/Mahamudra, and the same as Advaita* in the Vedic tradition.
The trouble lies within the series of steps – the path – which is our confusion. As we gain incomplete information and knowledge which is partial, we may find that we act in strange ways. One of the ways in which this reveals itself in thinking that the knowledge we have acquired is more important than the person standing in front of us. This is when we get stuck in a religious or philosophical attitude, and lack wisdom.
Extremely subtle awareness – pure reality – is loving compassion with wisdom.
There are no disagreements here; ‘isness’ just ‘is’.
On the path of our confusion – the series of steps – there are all sorts of exotic names.
Within ‘isness’, there are no names.
Chemistry is chain reactions of matter.
Mind is chain reactions of ideas.
Wisdom is cutting through chain reactions.
* “Vedantic doctrine that identifies the individual self (atman) with the ground of reality (brahman). Traditionally Buddhism does not recognise an atman or brahman.” But reason says, this is meaning of the two truths – non-duality. The same as God and God-consciousness. Disagreement is only at the stage of the series of steps. 🙂