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Origin of Buddhism

By | November 2012
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Buddhism first originated in Northern India with Siddharta Gautama, who also came to be known as the first Buddha around sixth century B.C. Siddharta Gautama, also a prince of the Guatmama Clan, was a wealthy man who hadn’t seen any form of human suffering during the beginning of his life. It wasn’t until he was twenty-nine years of age that he realized what he’d been so oblivious of for so long. From there, he renounced his family and material possessions to seek the truth and solution to human suffering.

In order to achieve this, Gautama first tried meditation, which he learned from two teachers of his. Since meditation could not be extended forever, however, he returned to the life of unsolved human suffering. Since his goal could not be reached solely through meditation, he joined a group of Brahmanism followers, with whom he practiced breath control and fasted for nearly six years, only eating a few grains of rice each day in order to keep himself alive. While this technique produced a series of physical discomforts, similar to those living in poverty and that of the suffering, he rejected this path in the end, as well.

Still, determined to reach the state of Nirvana - something also known as the state of liberation and freedom from suffering - the future Buddha decided to follow a “Middle Way” through moderation and meditation, which defined this particular path that he had chosen.

Through this, eventually, he had achieved his goal to attain enlightenment. In around 535 BC, Gautama seated himself underneath a large Bodhi tree and began to have spiritual experiences. He had developed the ability to recall the events of his previous reincarnations, to tell how good and bad deeds that the living performed led to the nature of their reincarnation of the next life - also known as Karma - and had learned that he had progressed beyond his spiritual defilements and had reached Nirvana. Spiritual defilements, in this case, mean that he...

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