Brief History Of Buddhism

Origins Of The World's Fourth Largest Religion

Brief History of Buddhism

Shakyamuni Buddha

Image courtesy of Osel Shen Phen Ling

Siddhartha Gautama Born Into Royal Family

The brief history of Buddhism dates back to the year 580 BC, which began with the birth of Siddhartha Gautama. He was born in Lumbini, Nepal into a royal family. Due to a prediction, his father protected him from all the evil and suffering of the world. He led a very sheltered life until one day he managed to escape the royal compound for just a few hours.

Witnesses Sufferings Of Life And Leaves Home

There of course he witnessed the sufferings of life: birth, aging, sickness and death and decided to leave his family and home to find out the reasons for all of this. He was 29 years of age.

After Six Years Of Practice Becomes Enlightened

For six years Siddhartha led the life of an ascetic, living a life of self-denial, discipline and meditation. One day he realized that this was not the way. He took some slightly better food then sat down to meditate determined not to get up again until he had all the answers. All night he sat in meditation and battled with the demons of his mind and at dawn he transcended his mind and became enlightened.

He became the Buddha. This happened in BodhGaya, India.

Traveled And Taught For More Than 40 Years

He traveled and taught what he had learned for the next 40 or so years. His teachings spread far and wide as people could see that he knew what he was talking about.

Over the centuries Buddhism spread to many countries in Asia and is now blossoming in the west. At each new place, Buddhism is mixed with some of the culture, symbols and practices of the local religions of that country but the essence and basic beliefs of Buddhism remain the same.

Buddhism is now a major religion, the fourth largest in the world.

Buddhism In Japan

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