Birth of Buddhism (Great Events from History: The Ancient World, Prehistory-476)
Article abstract: The teachings of Siddhārtha Gautama, known as the Buddha, gave rise to one of the world’s major religions.
Summary of Event
Buddhism is one of the world’s major religions. The teachings known as the Four Noble Truths are generally recognized as the core of Buddhism. The first truth is that life is suffering. Suffering continues through an endless chain of rebirths. The second truth is that suffering is caused by desire. The third is that desire can be ended, and the fourth is that right living according to Buddhist precepts (known as the Eightfold Path) is the way to end desire. With the ceasing of desire, beings enter nirvana, a state of release from existence. The striving toward nirvana also involves dedication to the Three Jewels. The first jewel is Buddha himself. The second is the dharma, or “universal law,” the truth taught by Buddha. The Sangha, or community of monks, is the third.
The founder of Buddhism, Siddhārtha Gautama, also known as Gautama Śākyamuni, was born in the kingdom of the Śākyas in northeastern India. The most commonly accepted dates for his life are c. 566 to c. 486 b.c.e. During this period, India was in a state of rapid political, social, and economic change. By about 600 b.c.e., a number of republics and kingdoms had arisen in northern India, and settled towns became a prominent part of life. Trade with western Asia and other parts of the world...
(The entire section is 1528 words.)
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