Some common features of Islam and Buddhism

Religions often carry the essence of humanity’s quest for understanding the profound aspects of existence, morality, and the universe. Both Islam and Buddhism, though rooted in distinct cultural and historical contexts, share several foundational principles that drive their followers towards ethical living, spiritual growth, and societal harmony. By exploring the parallels and contrasts between these two philosophies, one can appreciate the diverse ways through which human beings seek truth and meaning.

This document delves into the common features of Islam and Buddhism, comparing their basic principles, ethical disciplines, and approaches to faith and community life, revealing underlying similarities and unique distinctions. Additionally, it includes information on Islamic Prayer Times in Cairo and other regions to provide practical insights into the daily religious practices of Muslims in a specific cultural context.

Basic Principles in Islam

The essence of Islam centers on an innate human drive to follow God, similar to an infant’s instinct to connect with its mother. While humans possess free will and intellect, they can choose to obey God or succumb to negative emotions. Disobedience leads to metaphorical “black stains” on the heart, veiling it from God’s truth. The soul must use its free will to cleanse these stains, a process described as “jihad,” meaning an internal struggle to overcome negative influences and lead an ethical life. To delve deeper into Islamic culture, visit and find answers.

The three dimensions of Islam are submission, faith, and excellence

Submission involves recognizing God and Muhammad as His messengers and adhering to practices like praying, fasting, and charitable acts. Faith is about accepting the truths of Islam and the Koran, while excellence, often translated as love, involves good character and service to God and others. The text highlights God’s role as a fair judge who rewards obedience and forgives sincere repentance. Shariah law emphasizes both justice and forgiveness, allowing for punishment, compensation, or pardon. The text also notes Islam’s appeal in regions like Africa for its sense of equality and brotherhood.

Basic Principles in Buddhism

buddha statue
Buddha statue

In Buddhism, all beings possess a pure, beginningless Buddha nature that allows them to become Buddhas. In Islam, a pure innate nature created by God enables people to become close to God and, in some Sufi traditions, to merge with God, but not to become God. Both philosophies describe a similar phenomenon of an intrinsic pure nature, though Buddhism does not include a creator God. Both Buddhism and Islam, along with science, acknowledge innate qualities like compassion and the ability to discern helpfulness from harmful actions.

Ethical discipline, faith, and community

In Buddhism, ethical behavior is based on understanding cause and effect, while Islam emphasizes obedience to God’s laws. Faith in Buddhism involves logical analysis of Buddha’s teachings, whereas Islam requires total submission to God. Buddhist Dharma focuses on preventing suffering through self-awareness and analysis, in contrast to the law-based ethics of Islam. Both religions value community support—Buddhism through the Sangha and Islam through the brotherhood of Muslims. Both also address overcoming ignorance to reveal one’s innate purity, though through different teachings and methods.


In examining the fundamental tenets of Islam and Buddhism, it becomes evident that despite their differing origins and theological frameworks, both religions offer profound insights into human nature, ethics, and the pursuit of a meaningful life. Each encourages moral conduct, spiritual development, and the nurturing of a compassionate community.

Islam’s emphasis on submission and adherence to divine commandments significantly contrasts with Buddhism’s focus on internal enlightenment and self-awareness, yet both paths highlight a transformative journey towards a higher ethical and spiritual state. By appreciating these differences and similarities, one can gain a deeper learning of the diverse ways in which humanity seeks to navigate the complexities of existence and ultimately find peace, purpose, and connection.