• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Teachings Now the Buddha wanted to tell other people how to become wise, good and do service for others. He advised his followers to follow the Middle Way, avoiding the two extremes of self-indulgence and self-torture. H

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Early Life Buddha was born Siddhartha Gautama on the foothills of Lumbini, in what is now Nepal, in about 563 BCE. His father, King Shuddhodana was the ruler of the Shakya clan and his mother was Queen Mayadevi. The legends surrounding Buddha suggest that both his conception and birth were miraculous. His mother, Queen Mayadevi, conceived him when she dreamt that a white elephant entered her womb. She gave birth to him in a standing position while holding onto a tree in a garden. The child emerged from Mayadevi's right side, fully formed. He then proceeded to take seven steps and proclaimed, "I am the foremost of all. This is my last birth. I will cross the ocean of existence." 1 Queen Mayadevi died seven days after the birth and Siddhartha was raised by his aunt Mahaprajapati, the King's second wife. It was predicted at his birth that Siddhartha would become either a world ruler or a world teacher. Siddhartha's father felt very strongly about him taking over as ruler. He therefore gave Siddhartha everything he wanted and every luxury he could have. Siddhartha was kept inside and was not permitted to see the elderly, the sickly, the dead, or anyone who had dedicated themselves to spiritual practices. ...read more.

Middle

Now, in spite of this desertion, Siddhartha was unwavering in his decision about reaching enlightenment. So determined was he that he sat under at tree for seven weeks until he was able to reach divine reality and knowledge. As he sat in a meditative state, the demon Mara tried to cast him away with his temptations; however they were futile and seemed to reflect of Siddhartha, since he had such a strong concentration and determination to fulfill his aim. Mara even tried to deny him the right to be enlightened, but yet again, Siddhartha called upon the Earth goddess as witness, and eventually, upon realization that Siddhartha would not be beaten, Mara backed down. Then the real enlightenment took place, in the form of the four watches. The first watch began with Siddhartha recalling past lives with unbelievable detail and understanding. The second watch took place with Siddhartha watching people and animals passing into and out of existence, and crucially at this point realizing constant change. The third watch was the realization that all suffering is caused by a constant continual cycle of craving, and he realized the way to overcome suffering. Finally, he was enlightened, showered with supreme knowledge and understanding. ...read more.

Conclusion

During the next century his teaching spread throughout most of Asia. Today there are well over 500 million Buddhists living in countries such as India, Nepal, Thailand, Japan etc. There are many Buddhist centers in England, Europe and the U.S.A. Buddhists believe that everyone can achieve enlightenment. They hope to do so. Some say that we all have the 'Buddha nature' within ourselves. Siddhartha is called the Buddha because he was the first to be enlightened in this way. Buddhists respect the Buddha in many different ways. They respect him as a great and famous teacher, helping others to understand the truth and meaning of life, and to help them gain enlightenment as he achieved. 1 Dr. Radha Banerjee, Birth of Buddha and its Vedic Parallel (http://www.ibiblio.org/radha/p_a058.htm) 2 Dr. C. George Boeree, The Life of Siddhartha Gautama (http://www.ship.edu/~cgboeree/siddhartha.html) 3 Rupert Gethin. The Foundations of Buddhism. Oxford University Press, 1998 4 Denise Cush: Buddhism London, Hodder and Stoughton 1995 5 Rupert Gethin. The Foundations of Buddhism. Oxford University Press, 1998. 6 Narada Thera, Buddhism in a Nutshell (http://www.buddhanet.net/nutshell05.htm) 7 Bhikkhu Bodhi ,The Noble Eightfold Path (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/bps/misc/waytoend.html) 8Buddha Dharma Education, Buddhist Studies: Life of the Buddha (http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/buddhism/lifebuddha) 9 Buddha Dharma Education, Buddhist Studies: Life of the Buddha (http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/buddhism/lifebuddha) 10 Buddha Dharma Education, Buddhist Studies: Life of the Buddha (http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/buddhism/lifebuddha) 11 Dr. C. George Boeree, The Life of Siddhartha Gautama (http://www.ship.edu/~cgboeree/siddhartha.html) ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Buddhism section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Buddhism essays

  1. In what ways and to what extent did the European Enlightenment challenge established sources ...

    "For the first time man could dare know about the social arrangements under which he lived, rather than have them presented to him through the obscuring haze of a religious ideology. By knowing about these social arrangements their operation would become clear, and thus open to change."

  2. The Life and Teachings of Siddhartha ...

    He saw an old man, a sick man, a corpse and a Hindu holy man, or a 'Sadhu'. After seeing the first three of these, Siddhartha knew that he had to grow old and die. He no longer wanted a life of luxury but wanted to be ordinary.

  1. Modernity and Enlightenment

    Frenchmen felt enslaved by their current authorities and tried to overthrow them through the improvement of literacy, anonymous tracts and social exploration.

  2. Ultimate Reality and Spiritual Truths within Buddhism and Judaism

    Buddhist ultimate reality is nirvana. Judaism is the oldest monotheistic religion in the world. It shares many of its spiritual truths and claims of ultimate reality with Christianity and some with Islam. Stemming from the same roots as Christianity and Islam, Judaism's claims about ultimate reality and spiritual truths centre on its main belief in one God and God's special covenant with His people.

  1. Emergence Of The Buddha

    (Buddhism Denise Cush) The Indian caste system began to develop and the civilisations were placed into the category that they belonged too. "Each mans duty was to follow the profession suitable for his social class." (Buddhism Dominique Side) Even today the values of the caste system are held strongly, it

  2. Today is a result of yesterday, tomorrow is a result of today.(TM) To what ...

    The early scriptures of Buddhism (The Pali Canon) are clear in seeing human life as starting with conception: 'when there is the union of the mother and father, and it is the mother's season, and the being to be reborn is present, through the union of these three things the conception of an embryo in a womb takes place'.

  1. Compare the Buddhist understandings of life after death with on other view

    be seen to parallel that of the idea amongst some Christians that there are different levels of Heaven and Hell. However the idea of rebirth is obviously not present in this Christian view of the afterlife and the souls are still human souls in some form, not for example an animal or demi-god.

  2. Why Buddhism, Why Now? AND WHY IN AMERICA

    However, a few general observations can be made. The Biblical religions do uphold the ideals of love, compassion, and divine mercy balanced by a call for justice and righteousness. The Biblical religions have a system of morals and ethics which have formed the basis of law and culture in the Western world.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work