What is the relationship between your religious roots and your current Buddhist practice?
About a year ago, in his piece "Christian Buddhism?" on Buddhist Geeks, Dennis Hunter suggested that we Buddhists ought to more seriously consider the influence of Christianity when we speak of Buddhism in the West.
If the Dharma always melds with elements of the dominant spiritual practices of a new culture, maybe we’re barking up the wrong tree by focusing so much on the intersection of Buddhism and science. Perhaps the spotlight really belongs on the intersection of Buddhism and Christianity, and people like Stuart Lord are the forerunners of an emergent tradition blending Eastern and Western spiritual influences into something whose shape we don’t yet know how to anticipate.
Judging by the number of comments that mention Christianity in an ongoing Tricycle Community discussion, "What led you to Buddhism?," this is an interesting and important topic for Western Buddhists—especially convert Buddhists.
Discussion topic: If you come from a Jewish or Christian background (family, community, or country) and later either converted to or became influenced by Buddhism, what is the relationship between your religious roots and your current Buddhist practice? Does Judaism or Christianity inform your Buddhism? Do Judeo-Christian symbols continue to resonate with you? Or have you rejected all aspects of the Christian tradition? Is it even possible to make Christianity and Buddhism compatible? What, if anything, do you lose when you conflate them? Has your practice of Buddhism changed your relationships with Christian friends and family?