Can a lifelong Buddhist be a Catholic?

I was born a Protestant, converted with my family at age 14 to Catholicism, drifted away from the Church and, around 21, discovered Buddhism, which I have practiced in different traditions until the present. In the past couple of years I have developed a serious interest in God and the Catholic Church and have recently attended Mass. I have not spoken with a priest yet, but I wonder if the belief in God could be compatible with Buddhist meditation.

Perhaps you have misstated your question, but it does not appear to me that you have been a “lifelong” Buddhist. It appears that you took up Buddhism after becoming an adult. In any case, yes, a Buddhist can become a Catholic. Or, in your case, a Catholic can return to the Church from Buddhism. All that may be necessary for you is to go to confession.

But you need to be aware that Catholicism and Buddhism are not compatible and that you must be willing to renounce Buddhism and the practice of it to be reconciled to the Church.

Recommended reading:

How compatible is Buddhism with Christianity?
Are Buddhism’s four noble truths Catholic?
Are Jesus and Buddha Brothers? by Carl E. Olson and Anthony E. Clark (sidebar)

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