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Tiger Woods: I was raised a Buddhist

Tiger Woods Public Apology - Photo: TigerWoods.com

In the theatre of American public apologies (19/2), it’s common for celebrities to invoke their faith. Disgraced golf superstar Tiger Woods did it Friday, in fact, with a twist. He cited the role of Buddhism in his life – and will look to it to help him recover from serial infidelity.

“I have a lot of work to do, and I intend to dedicate myself to doing it. Part of following this path for me is Buddhism, which my mother taught me at a young age. People probably don’t realize it, but I was raised a Buddhist, and I actively practiced my faith from childhood until I drifted away from it in recent years,” Woods said during Friday’s televised apology, his first public appearance in nearly three months.”

“Buddhism teaches that a craving for things outside ourselves causes an unhappy and pointless search for security. It teaches me to stop following every impulse and to learn restraint. Obviously, I lost track of what I was taught.”

It was Woods’ most direct reference to his beliefs yet.

In a few previous interviews, Woods said he had practised mediation and had attended temple with his mother. He has credited her, and her Thai Buddhism, with giving him the focus needed on the golf course and throughout his life.

His latest comments reflected the Buddhist teachings about desire, craving and attachment – and balance.