How Do I Become A Buddhist?

Lay Buddhist Certification

There are a lot of people wondering "How do I Become a Buddhist?" there are a variety of articles that address this point though there isn’t yet a certification course for lay Buddhists, that you can take, complete and then know that "Yes, now I know that I am a Buddhist".

"Lord, to what extent is one a lay follower?"

"Jivaka, when one has gone to the Buddha for refuge, has gone to the Dhamma for refuge, and has gone to the Sangha for refuge, then to that extent is one a lay follower."

from Jivaka Sutta

The simple answer to the question of "How do I become a lay follower?" that the Buddha gave is that you must take refuge in the three jewels (The Buddha, The Dharma, and The Sangha), the more complex answer is that you need to understand what those are and what it means to take refuge in them, and then apply what you learn, to truly become a devout lay Buddhist, instead of just a nominal one (someone that says they are a Buddhist without really knowing what that entails).

"And to what extent, lord, is one a virtuous lay follower?"

"Jivaka, when one abstains from taking life, from stealing, from sexual misconduct, from lying, and from fermented & distilled drinks that lead to heedlessness, then to that extent is one a virtuous lay follower."
from Jivaka Sutta

There are many degrees to which one can be a Buddhist, this Lay Buddhism course will cover how to become a Virtuous Lay follower of Buddhism, including some of the history of Buddhism, an overview of the schools of Buddhisms, the three Jewels, the Noble Truths, and we will also review the Eightfold and Twelvefold Paths of Buddhism.

In addition to learning these relatively easy to learn facts, you will also be applying the virtues and meditations in your life and logging your results. Each month you log your meditations and virtuous activites you will be able to receive feedback to help you on your path to becoming a lay Buddhist.

At the end of the course you will have:

After completing the course you will receive a non-forge-able printable certificate that you can use to access more advanced courses and opportunities offered by the Green school of Buddhism.

Lay Buddhist Certification
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