Difference Between Jainism amd Buddhism- Similarities, Jainism Vs Buddhism

By K Balaji|Updated : November 3rd, 2022

The primary difference between Jainism and Buddhism is that Buddhism is founded by Gautam Buddha while the founder of Jainism is believed to be Rishabhanatha. In Jainism, there are 24 Tirthankaras. The Jains majorly follow the five principles of Ahimsa, Satya, Asetya, Aparigraha, and Bhattacharya. Chandragupta Maurya is accredited for the spread of Jainism. The teachings of Buddhism were enshrined and conserved by establishing numerous Buddhist councils. The major points highlighting the difference between Jainism and Buddhism have been highlighted here to ascertain the candidates with complete knowledge of the topic.

Jainism and Buddhism both vehemently opposed the caste system. The major teachings of Buddhism include the three universal truths, four noble truths, and eightfold paths. Along with the major difference between Jainism and Buddhism, they also share a high degree of similarity. Along with the differences the similarities between both religions have also been shared here. This is an essential topic for the UPSC exam. The aspirants preparing for the exam must be wholly cognizant of the pertinents of this topic in order to attain good marks in the exam.

Table of Content

Difference Between Jainism And Buddhism

Buddhism and Jainism strongly believes in Karma and forces. Even with so many similarities, there are many key points underlining the difference between Buddhism and Jainism.

Difference Between Jainism And Buddhism UPSC

Walk through the table that has been structured below to get complete details. A striking difference between Jainism and Buddhism is that while Jainism views other dharmas as comrades, Buddhism disapproves of other dharmas.

Difference Between Buddhism And Jainsim




Belief of God

Buddhists reject the concept of an all-knowing, all-powerful, all-present creator. Theistic arguments that the universe came into existence by a God were denied by the Buddha himself.

Jainism rejects the belief in a Creator God too.

Life after death

One of Buddhism's major concepts is rebirth. It is believed that we are trapped in a never-ending cycle of birth, death, and rebirth that can only be ended by achieving nirvana. The only way to be free of agony for good is to reach nirvana.

Due to Karma, the loop of rebirths and deaths continues until emancipation is attained through reincarnation in any life form on Earth, as well as heavenly and infernal life forms.

Founded by

The Buddha

The Jains maintain that their religion is timeless, and believe Rishabhanatha to be the founder

Places of worship

Monasteries, temples, shrines.


Original Language(s)

Pali and Sanskrit

Ancient literature was written in a variety of languages, the most common of which was Magadhi, the language spoken at the time of Mahavir and Buddha.

View of other religions

Other Dharmas are rejected because the name Dharma denotes doctrine, law, path, instruction, or discipline.

Other Dharmic religions are seen as comrades.


This life is filled with pain, and the only way to find relief is to realize the Four Noble Truths and follow the Eightfold Path to dispel one's wants and ignorance.

All living creatures should be respected. Attain liberation by avoiding and eliminating negative karma, which is the source of all reincarnations and sorrows. Three jewels and five vows.

Concept of Deity

There are beings in the heavenly realms, according to certain views, but they are also bound by "samsara." They may suffer less, but they have not yet found salvation

Tirthankaras are a group of deities. However, Jains do not worship them in the traditional sense of idol worship to obtain benefits. These Tirthankars, on the other hand, are revered as ideal men and instructors whose teachings should be followed.


The concept of sin is not elaborated in Buddhism

The concept of sin is illustrated in Jainism and is defined to hurt other living beings.


Tripitaka [three sections are the Disciple, the Discourse and the Commentaries]



Mahayana and Theravada

Svetambara and Digambara

Similarities Between Buddhism And Jainism

There are many similarities between Buddhism and Jainism. Not only did the forefathers of these two philosophies have very similar careers, but they were also contemporaneous and originated mostly around Northern India. There are some obvious similarities in their philosophical teachings.

  • Both deny the Vedas' and Vedic priests' authority.
  • They deny the effectiveness of rituals and ceremonies
  • They strongly criticize sacrifice, and both dismiss God. Man is his architect, according to Jainism, hence there is no Supreme deity or creator.
  • They are both against the caste system and animal exploitation.
  • Both of them are concerned with the concept of 'karma' and its consequences.

What Is Buddhism?

Buddhism is in accordance with the preachings and teachings of Gautam Buddha. The teachings of Buddhism were spread, enshrined, and established by the Buddhist councils. The followers of Buddhism believe in Panchsheel, which reiterates not committing adultery, and not lying. The teachings of Buddha lead to the three universal truths of life and four noble truths. The integral part of the preaching of Buddha is following the eightfold path.

What is Jainism?

Jainism emerged in post-Vedic era, it opposes the caste system. Mostly two Jain councils are held to date. There are in total two major sects of Jainism, that are Digambara and Svetambara. The literature pertaining to Jainism has been segregated into two types that are Agam literature and Non-Agam literature. The people who follow Jainism incorporate these principles in their lives that are Ahimsa, Satya, Asetya, Aparigraha, and Bhattacharya. The preachings of Jainism has been spread in Pali and Prakriti language.

Important Notes for UPSC
Powers and Functions of High CourtHistorical Background of Indian Constitution
Industrial Dispute Act 1947Prehistoric Rock Paintings
Hindustan Socialist Republican AssociationVice President of India
Buddhist CouncilIndian National Army
Composition of AtmosphereLargest Solar Power Plant in India


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FAQs on Difference Between Jainism And Buddhism

  • The key difference between Jainism and Buddhism is that Buddhism has been founded by Gautam Buddha whereas Jainism is established by Rishabhanatha. Buddhism follows the monasteries, temples and, shrines as their places of worship, and followers of Jainism visit temples. Buddhism disapproves of other religions, while Jainism views other Dharmas as comrades.

  • Being a practical philosophy, Buddhism is neutral against other religions. Meanwhile, Jainism believes in pluralism and respects other religious viewpoints, and tries to accommodate them.

  • Animals are given equal rights as humans in Buddhism but monks aren't restricted from eating meat when offered. Whereas eating meat was strictly forbidden in Jainism.

  • In many ways, Buddhism and Jainism are alike because they both emerged in the same part of India. The only thing they have in common is that they both deny the existence of God.

  • Buddhism has been founded by Gautam Buddha and the teachings have been enshrined by the establishment of Buddhist councils. Mahayana and Theravada are main two sects of Buddhism. Other dharmas are disapproved by Buddhism as they determine the principles, deity, instructions etc. They consider all living beings to be equal and aspire to equality.

  • Rishabhanatha is considered to be the founder of Jainism. The places of worship pertaining to Jainism include temples. They view other religions as their comrades. There are in total 24 Tirthankaras in Jainism. The literature has been penned down in Magadhi.

  • Yes, atheists can take part in both Buddhism and Jainism. Buddhism and Jainism share many differences and similarities. Both religions oppose the caste system that prevails in society.

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