Buddhism is based upon the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, an Indian prince born in approximately 563 BC. Siddhartha began his spiritual quest at the age of 29 which lead 6 years later to his enlightenment under the Bodhi tree (‘tree of wisdom’) at Bodh Gaya in Northern Indian. He became known as the Buddha (the enlightened one). He lived to the age of about 80 and when he died he had a following of approximately 500 disciples. Buddhism grew dramatically during the reign of Emperor Ashoka (268-239BCE.) He converted to Buddhism. As his Empire covered much of India, Buddhism spread throughout it. He also sent missionaries off to other lands. It is said that his children introduced Buddhism to Sri Lanka.
|1.The teaching of Buddha (Dharma)|
|2.An explanation on that teaching (Adhidharma). Most of these are called Sutras|
|3.A rule book for monks and nuns (the Vinaya) There are 227 rules for monks,and more for nuns! The rules can be relaxed. Shoes were not one of the items a monk was originally allowed to have, but they are worn. It also sets out instructions on ceremonies |
|1. I take refuge in the Buddha |
|2. I take refuge in the Dharma (teachings of Buddha)|
|3. I take refuge in the Sangha ( the community of the Buddha).|
|Dukkha ||-unsatisfactoriness. The imperfection of life. It is one of the three signs of being, the others being: Anicca -impermanence|
Anatta -no permanent self
|Samudaya ||– origin of unsatisfactoriness, Dukkha is seen as originating in tanha, a craving that can not be satisfied and therefore results in rebirth.|
|Niirodha||– The cessation of Dukkha, the overcoming of tanha|
|Marga ||– The Way. This is often known as the Middle Way of Life, the fourth noble truth is the way to overcome dukkha by following the Noble Eightfold Path.|
|Right Understanding||Right Intention|
|Right Speech||Right Action|
|Right Livelihood||Right effort|
|Right Mindfulness||Right Concentration|
1. Right understanding- This means a proper
understanding of Buddha's teachings and of the world
2. Right intention- This means thinking kind or wise thoughts and doing so consciously free from fantasy
3. Right speech- This means not telling lies or speaking angrily but speaking honestly and compassionately and well of others
4. Right action- This means behaving peacefully and honestly
5. Right livelihood- This means not harming any other living creature. Buddhists believe it is vital to look after the earth's resources and to stop the pollution and destruction of the environment.
6. Right effort- This means using discipline and control to overcome difficulties. To think before acting
7. Right mindfulness- This means paying full attention to what is going on.
8. Right concentration/ meditation- This means to be able to be at peace in any situation through an ability to focus deeply on it.
|Harming living beings||Taking what is not given|
|Sexual misconduct||Harmful speech|
|Drink or drugs|
|Giving||Keeping the moral precepts|
|Patience||Strength to preserve|
As with other areas of Buddhist art these have meaning as well as beauty. Colour is used to represent Buddha's different virtues. Red is his compassion, blue the truth of his teaching and white his purity. The shape also has meaning. The circle symbolises the Buddhist universe. There are 4 openings from the circle. These are the entrances to the virtue shown in the centre.
There is no God in Buddhism rather by breaking the cycle of rebirth and achieving enlightenment Buddhists believe that they will reach the state of Nirvana, it is not a place like the concept of Heaven but rather a state of eternal being. It is the end of suffering, a state where there are no desires and the individual consciousness has come to an end. The Buddha never gave an exact definition of Nirvana but he did say the following:
nor water, neither air nor light, neither limitless space,
nor limitless time, neither any kind of being, neither
this world nor that world. There is neither arising nor
passing-away, nor dying, neither cause nor effect,
neither change nor standstill.’
In Tibet there are also gods. Manjushri is seen as a representation of the Bodhisattva's. Along with another figure, called Avalokiteshvra, he represents the spirit and strength (or wisdom and compassion) of Buddha. Other figures can represent the same thing, for example the goddess Tara, who is worshipped for her compassion, is said to represent Buddha's own compassion.
|1. Lumbini, where Buddha was born|
|2. Bodhgayar, where he gained enlightenment|
|3. Sarnath where he preached his first |
sermon and set in motion the wheel of law.
|4. Kushinagara, where he died and was |
cremated. There are other sites such as
Dharasala ,the home of the Dalai Lama.
small vehicle) Buddhists form the earliest school. It has one hundred million or so followers. They are mainly found in Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Burma and Sri Lanka as well as parts of Vietnam.
It regards the path to Nirvana as an individual pursuit and places reliance on individual wisdom.
It focuses on the historical Buddha and the idea that the individual has
achieved release from rebirth. It is based on the Pali canon of scriptures.
Mahayana – The Great Vehicle
END=NAM MO SHAKYAMUNI BUDDHA.( 3 TIMES ).