If and when one wants to convert to Buddhism, there are some simple steps to take. One of the most crucial steps would be understanding Buddhism as a religion, a philosophy, and a lifestyle. As a religion, Buddhism is what one would call a “nontheistic” religion. This differs from religions such as Judaism, Islam, Protestantism, Catholicism, and other monotheistic religions in which one deity is worshiped. Buddhism differs from religions such as Shinto, Hinduism, and other polytheistic religions in which multiple deities are worshiped. There is no deity in Buddhism. The Buddha itself is looked upon as a teacher and not a deity for worship. Also, Buddha simply means “enlightened one.”
An article on Wiki How has a good idea on the steps to follow in regards to being a Buddhist. An article on the website for the Buddhist Faith Fellowship of Connecticut adds that there is the “Affirmation and Ordination Ceremony” or “Kikyoshiki” for converting to Buddhism if you are converting into the Shin-sect of Buddhism. There are various sects of Buddhism. Other than the formal ceremony for Shin Buddhism, there are no formal ceremonies needed when wanting to become part of the Buddhist faith.
The first step one must take is to further research Buddhism. One might want to convert into Buddhism after observing a few gatherings. Buddhists are generally encouraged to become vegetarians. As a philosophy and lifestyle, it fits with those that have a vegetarian or vegan diet. One should research Prince Siddharta Gautama, who is the first Buddha.
The teachings of Buddha
Next, one has to learn about the teachings of Buddha. The two most important teachings would be the “Eightfold Path” and the “Four Noble Truths.”
Then, you need to research the different paths/forms of Buddhism. After that, decide what path you want to follow. Keep in mind that South Korea, China, Japan, India, Sri Lanka, and other predominantly Buddhist countries have their own different paths.
Also, explore the different Buddhist communities out there. They usually gather at a temple or some community center. Whenever there is a service, you should attend them. This is important when converting to Buddhism. However, you do not necessarily have to attend all services.
The most important thing is to practice the teachings of Buddha in everyday life. However, you need to practice them in moderation. This is a religious faith that centers on moderation. Also, think of this as more of a philosophy than a religion. Mainly, just follow Buddha’s teachings in moderation. You do not necessarily have to attend services.