5 Celebrity Buddhists
Buddhism has a powerful following in today’s modern age of about 488–535 million people. And it is not surprising to find many celebrity Buddhists and leaders, embracing this tradition.
The fundamentals of Buddhists traditions comprise of the Three Jewels.
The Buddha, which means the awakened one
The Dharma, which means the teachings
The Sangha, which means the community
Another element to Buddhism encompasses the Ten Meritorious Deeds. This includes following certain ethical principles:
The study of scriptures and sacred practices
The ability to nurture higher wisdom and discernment
Regular meditation practice and the development of mindfulness
The act of charity giving, which is used to reduce greediness
Relinquishing the conventional way of living and learning how to be more frugal
Some of Hollywood’s biggest Buddhists Celebs
Kate Hudson was raised with Buddhist influences from an early age as her mother, Goldie Hawn, had taken a serious interest in the religion after beginning with mindful-living and meditation in the 70s. Coming from a Jewish background, Hudson still associates herself with Judaism, in principle however is a Buddhist in practice.
“Mum is a Buddhist. She has taught me to look at life as lessons to be learned: we all experience love and disappointment, laughter and pain. Her philosophy has stopped me from becoming cynical, which squashes the good things. If you focus on positivity and honesty, you’ll be happy.”
Orlando Bloom is a practicing Buddhist who became a full member of Soka Gakkai International in 2004.
“The philosophy that I’ve embraced isn’t about sitting under a tree and studying my navel, it’s about studying what is going on in my daily life and using that as fuel to go and live a bigger life. When your girlfriend dumps you, when the bill comes through the door, and your mom calls you and tells you she can’t handle the stuff in her life—that’s hell, but that’s just one world. If you are aware of what is going on, then you can grow and use that hunger, that fear.”
Tina Turner was a born and raised Baptist, however in 1971 her and her husband Ike, were introduced to Buddhism by a friend and from then Turner has referred to herself as a Buddhist.
“Meditation and praying change your spirit into something positive. If it is already positive, it makes it better.”
Richard Gere is probably one of Hollywood’s most dedicated Buddhists. Being raised Methodist, his interest and involvement in Buddhism only began in his 20s.
Within five or six years of his studies he travelled to Nepal where he was introduced to many Tibetan monks and lamas, he then also met the 14th Dalai Lama in India. He is now a practicing Tibetan Buddhist of the Gelugpa school of Tibetan Buddhism.
Sharon Stone converted to Buddhism after Richard Gere introduced her to the Dalai Lama. She is now a Tibetan Buddhist, however still believes in God and is in her own right, religious.
Buddhism has five principle rules that one must follow in order to lead a happy life. These ideologies encourage reaching a pure meditative state and leading a worry-free lifestyle.
To refrain from taking life and non-violence towards sentient life forms
To refrain from taking that which is not given and not committing theft
To refrain from sensual and sexual misconduct
To refrain from lying, speaking truth always is of utmost importance
To refrain from intoxicants which lead to loss of mindfulness, specifically, drugs and alcohol
The Dalai Lama states,
“From one viewpoint, Buddhism is a religion, from another viewpoint Buddhism is a science of mind and not a religion.
Buddhism can be a bridge between these two sides. Therefore, with this conviction I try to have closer ties with scientists, mainly in the fields of cosmology, psychology, neurobiology and physics.
In these fields there are insights to share, and to a certain extent we can work together.”