But then, most things Christians didn't understand were blamed on Satan... They still are where I live. Lol. Most of the Mexican Americans here are Americanized Catholics who are well adjusted to the lifestyle of self loathing and insecurity driven one-upmanship that is the hallmark of that faith as I am familiar with it. Far removed are they from boisterous, frank, kind-hearted alcoholics who come from south of the border, who tend to take mass as a kind of ritualistic pilate exercise and organized religion with block of salt large enough to sustain a horse. Off topic, but there is a tendency here to side strongly with the Catholic Church over the priest sex abuse issue that is so intense that it's more than a bit... horrifying.
I'm sorry to butt-in here, but … my God!
I have never read a more succinct description of Mexican Catholic culture in my life! Either that, or it's just gratifying to see someone else articulate my observations gleaned from growing up in Mexican American culture. I don't think I'd ever seen anyone else articulate it so well, so much so that I guess I had thought I was the only one who noticed this stuff. This isn't the sort of stuff people talk about openly in the culture, at least not in my experience.
About the similarities between Buddhism and Christianity…. I've read that Nichiren Buddhism in particular resembles Christianity, all the way down to the persecution of the founder, Nichiren. A while ago I read an account of Nichiren being dragged through the street as bystanders spat on him, and it felt like I was back in Catholic grade school. The first time I entered a Nichiren temple -- I almost knelt before I sat down. And sitting there with Juzu beads in my hands as I recited the Juryo and Hoben chapters, I had a flashback to reciting the rosary as a child (I've read the rosary beads are based on mala/Juzu beads).
About the child abuse in the Catholic Church, I remember reading about a decade ago that it is likely that it was/is just as bad in Latin America as it is here, but that due to the fact that the continent of South America is something like 80% Catholic, it's nearly impossible to speak out. No one would believe you if you said a priest abused you, and accusing a priest of such a thing would render one a complete social outcast. That happened in the US for a while; I've heard stories of children being slapped by their parents for saying such "awful" things about priests…. And I've also heard the abuse was an open secret in the US to decades….
(I describe my upbringing in Mexican American culture in the fourth post down on this page of another thread: viewtopic.php?f=59&t=17045&start=100