Does it really matter whether Buddhism is a religion or not? Whatever you might think, the discussion, sometimes heated, sometimes sedate, isn’t going to disappear any time soon. Today Barbara O’Brien over at about.com weighs in, while at the Vancouver Sun Douglas Todd takes on the arguably related discussion about the religion/spirituality split (you know, “I’m not religious, I’m spiritual”). Tricycle has addressed our queasiness about the word “religion” pretty fully, once in an article by Robert Bellah (referenced in Todd’s article) and again in a column by Huston Smith. But back to my original question: Does it matter whether we call Buddhism a religion? Well, as Barbara O’Brien points out, we’ve got to call it something. But whatever we decide to call it, I don’t expect it to change my practice much.

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