Within the Pali canon the Buddha often vigorously debates with Brahmin priests. However in the Buddha's time there were a lot of other spiritual traditions too. Did the Buddha have more cordial relationships with teachers of other faiths too? Are there examples of him working together with spiritual teachers of other traditions? I'm specifically asking about his teaching after he became enlightened. I know he studied with several teachers before that point.

  • If by working, you mean pointing out where they are wrong, he certainly did that with the Jains and Brahmins. He also helped a Brahmin understand his teachings by explaining it in Brahminical terms. However, he doesn't seem to have thought other philosophers of the time had the right idea of reality, so it is unlikely he had common ground. accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.101.than.html
    – Buddho
    Jul 16, 2015 at 20:25
  • Actually Lord Buddha was never a proactive debater. Lord Buddha only did so when someone came to him and started debating. And Lord Buddha preached only to debate on the Four Noble Truths. Because debate on something else is a waste of time. In Kalama Sutta and in some other Sutras Lord Buddha emphasized questioning and common sense etc. But debating and questioning are two different phenomena.
    – seeker
    Jul 17, 2015 at 11:35

2 Answers 2


Jatila brothers who had thousand disciples had some relationship with Lord Buddha. But they had evil intentions inside. But Lord Buddha knew their evil intentions. But they soon realized Lord Buddha was superior. Jatila brothers along with their thousand disciples became arhats after listening to Aditta Pariyaya Sutta. You can read the story here. I am unable to recall some other instances where other teachers had good relationships with Lord Buddha, but there must have been.


maybe someone can help me find the reference faster. I remember one sutta, Buddha told someone that a religious leader died and born in deva realm and then further explained that, one with different faith could possibly be born in heavenly realm after death as long as that faith didn't promote; harming/killing other beings, stealing, sexual misconduct, or lying/deceiving others. ( for some reason, he didn't include consuming intoxicants in this sutta).

  • Actually if I am not mistaken, five precepts are precepts, the complete akusal or unwholesome acts include a list of ten. Use of intoxicants and suicide are not included in the list. But if someone's last thought before death is an unwholesome act done by the mind, unless he had made any other very powerful karma like getting jnana, he will get the rebirth in one of the four hells. But unwholesome acts by mind are not covered by the five precepts. And only lying is covered speech wise. I am sure one should avoid all ten unwholesome acts, if such is Janaka karma, then rebirth is in a hell.
    – seeker
    Jul 17, 2015 at 15:56

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