It is generally accepted that Buddha was born in the sixth century BCE and lived for some eight years, but there is lots of controversy about the exact year of his death and birth. Some led to the conclusion that the most probable year of his birth is 563 BCE and that he passed away in 483. Recent scholar suggest that he survived between 480-400BCE. Below you can find history and life of Gautam Buddha.
Gautam Buddha Childhood
Suddhodana was the father of Gautam BUddha and his mother was Mahamaya. Shuddhodana was the ruler of Kapilvastu, situated at the foots of Himalaya, and it was the Capital of the Shakya people. Because he was born among the Shkya people, Gautam became known in the Mahayana tradition as Shakyamuni. Shakya was at that time a prosperous state under the larger kingdom of Kosala, ruled by King Prasenjit. The small state was ruled by the council of householders, one of whom was the father of Gautam Buddha.
The sage Asita had the vision of the birth of this glorious child and he came to the king palace. He expressed his desire to the king to see the royal boy, and the king took the sage to the chamber where baby was kept. Taking the baby in her arms, Queen Mahamaya tried to make the baby bow his head in reverence to the feet of Asita. But Asita himself reverently bowed at the feet of the child. The king and the queen were amazed but also dismayed to see the unusual behavior of the Asita and they asked about the future of the child.
The Sage Asita told that he didn’t see any impending danger to the prince, rather he was disappointed that he himself would not live long enough to hear the teachings of this glorious baby, who was to become an enlightened One and who would impart the teachings that lead to the termination of the cycle of birth & death.
King Shuddhodana then asked the Asit to fore-tell the future of the Prince. All except one offered two versions of the future: if the prince were to lead householder’s life, he would be universal monarch; but if he were to renounce the household life he would become fully enlightened.
Thus his name signifies one who will have the objective of his life accomplished or fulfilled. His family name being Gautam, he came to be known as Siddharth Gautam.
Gautam Buddha Marriage
The moment child siddhartha grown up , The King consulted with his counselors who advised the king to get the youthful prince married at once. This, they suggested would tie him to the pleasure of youthful life and prevent him from renouncing his home. Siddharth was exceptionally handsome youth, and it was not easy to find a suitable match for him. But the king emissaries succeeded to find an exquisitely beautiful and exceptionally noble princess name Yashodhara also called Gopa.
Buddha Attaining Enlightenment & Nirvana
Freed from disturbances, Siddhartha became absorbed in deep meditation. The Buddha later described in his dialogues how one gradually ascends in meditation from the first to the fourth state of awareness, in which the mind becomes placid, pure and concentrated. Then one begins to gain higher knowledges, as he points out-
“When the mind is concentrated, pure, cleansed, free from blemishes, purged of defilement, supple, plaint, steady and unperturbed, then one turn and directs his mind towards knowledge & insight”
At this point it is possible to see that one’s consciousness is different from the body, as the Buddha explains-
One knows thus: “This is my corporeal body, and this my consciousness, which is enveloped and bound by the body. just as, if a man were to pull out of the reed from the sheath of the munja grass, he would know, “This is the reed and this is the sheath” The read is one thing and the sheath is another”
The teachings of Gautam Buddha – “This Dhamma won by me is deep, difficult to see and comprehend, tranquil, excellent, beyond reason, subtle and comprehensible, only by the wise. But this is a world delighting and rejoicing in sensual pleasure. For people of such nature, this would be difficult to see..If I were to teach Dhamma and others were not to understand me, my efforts would result only in my wearings and fatigue…For people immersed in the darkness of ignorance, attachment and hatred, this Dhamma is subtle, profound and hard to comprehend, It would be like going against the current ”
Opened are the doors to Deathlessness,
Those who have ears to hear may hear with faith,
Foreseeing trouble, O Brahma, I didn’t speak
The refined, sublime, Dhamma among human being
When the Buddha described himself as a Jina, Upaka was puzzled and said, “May it be so friend.” Shaking his head, he took a bypath and departed, in sheer disbelief.
Some people even those of spiritual leaning, don not tale interest in spiritual teacher, even though they may see the purity and sublimity of the teacher and are convinced that his teachings are beyond reproach. They simply remain indifferent.
One Should not think that Buddha has no Guru. Buddha himself made mention of his two Gurus by Name. In the celebrated text the Lotus Sutra the Buddha states that he had previously been trained by many teachers.
First Disciple of Gautam Buddha
It is then recounted that the Buddha arrived at the Deer park of Rishipatana in Varanasi, where his five former disciples saw him coming and conferred among themselves:
“This recluse Gautam is coming. He took a life of ease and comfort, and deviated from the starving. He has reverted to a life of abundance. He should not be greeted. Nor should we get up receive him, not should we receive his bowl and robe.”
The Buddha revealed that he had become fully enlightened and that he would be please to share his attainments. Although they felt respectful towards the Buddha, they were hesitant to accept his as teacher, asking him how, by leading a life of relative comfort and wavering from his penances and fasts, he could attain the enlightenment that he has failed to reach even after massive austerities.
The Buddha explained that he had not wavered and he had not taken to comfort or luxury. In fact, he had found the right path, striven very hard and had succeeded in attaining the goal. He finally said:
“Did I speak to you, recluses, like this before?”
“No, revered sir,” they answered.
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