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How are we supposed to respond to forced conversion, is the choice completely personal or did Buddha ever talk about this i.e. conversion or death?

If someone chooses death over conversion to other religion, would that be the same as killing oneself or not maintaining loving kindness toward oneself and others?

  • Conversion to Buddhism or to a different religion? – Heisenberg Feb 18 '16 at 12:29
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    Buddhism states a self-responsible path ("You can do whatever you want, but if you want to reach nibbana you should try it this way") – OidaOudenEidos Feb 18 '16 at 12:50
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Yes a Buddhist will not give up on faith even in the face of death. How do i know? Well it happened in my country (Sri Lanka).

When the English invaded and captured my country they forced christianity. Not at just gunpoint they were much artistic.

They took the Babies from their mothers and ordered my people to be converted but they did not. So then they impaled Babies and move on to children & then to men and later women. Whole villages were slaughtered this way by the so called "Religion of love & peace". Some people by the way accepted Christianity and received government jobs and other favors as presents. They & their children are to this day Christian.


No, It does not generate bad karma to accept death instead of conversion, actually every Buddhist should look forward to that. Our "Martyrs" do not take live they just lay their innocent lives with Mettha (Kindness) towards the killers themselves.

If you are wondering why it does not become a bad Karma. Because it does not include Hate. We die with kindness towards these foolish ones who force faith on to others.

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    i am very sorry this happened in your country and i am inspired by the example your people laid forth. to die with a mind of kindness, no matter what or how gruesome the outer circumstance, is in accord with Lord Buddha's teaching. Namaste. _/_ – sova Feb 20 '16 at 10:22
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How are we supposed to respond to forced conversion, is the choice completely personal or did Buddha ever talk about this i.e. conversion or death?

I Buddhism there is not conversion. Yet the Buddhist pratice has convertion from bondage to liberation and misery to happiness as it aims at eradicating the metal conditions which create unsatisfactoriness. This is akin to visiting a psychologist to free yourself from agony.

If someone chooses death over conversion to other religion, would that be the same as killing oneself or not maintaining loving kindness toward oneself and others?

No. If someone is trying to kill you for not converting though death is inevitable there is no self hate.

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    Hi Suminda, after reading Theravada's answer, has your perspective been changed at all? – William Feb 23 '16 at 13:20

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