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1 A presentation by: Mr. Tsolomitis

2 What is Buddhism/ the Buddha?

3 Simply put Buddhism is a religion of ancient India, created by Siddhartha Gautama The Buddha is the title given to Siddhartha Gautama and it means Awakened One.

4

5 Prince Siddhartha s Birth Around 563 B.C.E. in northern India, near the Himalaya Mountains, to King Suddhodana and Queen Maya. According to legend, before Siddhartha was born, his mother had a strange dream. When she asked the Brahmins to explain the dream, they interpreted it as showing a split path He could be a great king and rule the universe OR, if he left royal life and saw the suffering of the world, he would become the Buddha.

6 Wild, fantastical tales about when he was born, like After his birth, a soft, warm rain of heavenly flowers fell on the baby and his mother The infant prince already looked a few years old, could walk and speak. Apparently his first words were, I am the leader of the world and the guide to the world.

7 What do you think his parents did? Turn to your neighbors and quietly discuss.

8 The Prince s Royal Life His father, the King, wanted his son to be a great and powerful ruler. In order to keep his son from seeing the world s suffering, he raised Siddhartha in a world of perfect health and beauty. Always felt curious about the outside world, but was content with his easy life for quite a while. When he was 16, he married a beautiful noblewoman and they lived happily well, not ever after. 12 years in perfect peace When Siddhartha turned 29, they had a son.

9 The Prince Discovers Something After Siddhartha became a father, the King gave him more freedom and so Siddhartha began traveling outside the palace walls. It was at this time that Siddhartha discovered three forms of suffering and it deeply troubled him.

10 What suffering do you think Siddhartha witnessed?

11 The First Type of The prince and his driver saw a thin man who walked with the aid of a stick. Siddhartha, never having seen the effects of aging, asked why the man looked so terrible. His driver replied that everyone s body weakens as it ages. Suffering

12 The Second Type of Suffering On the second trip, the prince and his driver saw a man crying out in pain. The driver informed Siddhartha about pain and sickness. REAL pain, not like this. Not a cry for attention. ACTUAL PHYSICAL PAIN.

13 The Third Type of On the third trip, they saw a group of people walking down the road, carrying a body wrapped in white cloth. The driver informed Siddhartha that, Death came for that man. One day it will come for you, too. Suffering

14 The Prince Meets an Ascetic Unable to sit in his palace with the thoughts of aging, sickness and death, Siddhartha went out a fourth time. This time, however, he met a man who glowed with inner peace and calm. The man was an ascetic. An ascetic is a person who gives up worldly possessions and pleasures like fine clothes, money, and even shelter. Siddhartha asked him how he could be at peace while surrounded by so much suffering. The ascetic replied, To be free of suffering, one must give up the desires, pleasures and comforts of the world. I find peace by helping others find peace.

15 The Prince Becomes an Ascetic Royal life seemed empty now and he wanted to find the happiness and peace the ascetic had found. Decided to give up his old life and find enlightenment (finding deep truth and being free of suffering). One night, he fled the palace with his faithful driver. He removed his fancy clothes and cut his hair off. He kept only a simple robe and a small bowl for alms (goods given to the poor).

16 (continued) Met many other ascetics who wanted to understand the nature of the world. Frequent meditation was said to be the path towards enlightenment. Another path was through selfdenial and denying their body many of its basic needs, like food, sleep, shelter. Siddhartha continued until he was dangerously thin and was unhappy with these practices.

17 The Prince Becomes the Buddha Siddhartha learned that giving up bodily pleasures did not bring enlightenment, but neither would self-indulgence. Instead, he sought a middle way as the path to enlightenment. On his 35 th birthday, Siddhartha bathed and rested by a river. When he awoke, he had a strong feeling that he was close to enlightenment. He met a grass cutter who gave him eight handfuls of soft grass to use as a pad to sit upon. Walked until he reached a tree that would be known later as the Bodhi Tree (Tree of Enlightenment). He sat on those handfuls of grass and began meditating and vowed he would not stop until he reached enlightenment.

18 While meditating A wicked deity, Mara, tried to frighten him, but Siddhartha was not swayed. Mara then tried to tempt Siddhartha with his three daughters; Discontent, Delight and Desire. Again, Siddhartha resisted. Trying to reach nirvana, an ideal state of happiness and peace. Saw his past lives and the great cycle of rebirth, as well as the importance of karma. Eventually he saw how to gain freedom from the endless cycle and so end all suffering. By morning, he had become the Buddha and set out to spread the word on the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path.

19 The Buddha s Teachings Behind the Four Noble Truths is the idea that everything changes: even when one finds pleasure, it does not last forever, and one suffers when it is lost. To end suffering, people should follow the Buddha s Middle Way, also known as the Eightfold Path. The Buddha spent the rest his life teaching others about the path he had found. In time, his followers would spread his teachings throughout India, China, and other parts of Asia. They would even eventually reach Japan!

20 The Four Noble Truths Suffering is present in all things, and nothing lasts forever. Suffering is caused by cravings (our desires and wants, but not our needs). The way to end suffering is to give up all cravings. The way to give up all cravings is to live life according to the Eightfold Path.

21 Right The Eightfold Path Understanding Purpose Speech Action Way to earn a living Effort Mindfulness Concentration

22 Right Understanding Develop a deep understanding of the Four Noble Truths.

23 Right Purpose Live a life of selflessness, love and nonviolence

24 Right Speech Be careful and truthful in what you say. Do not lie or gossip.

25 Right Action Do not kill, steal or lie.

26 Right way to earn a living Do not work at a job that causes harm to people or living creatures.

27 Right Effort Promote good actions and prevent evil actions.

28 Right Mindfulness Be aware of, but not attached to, your emotions, thoughts and feelings.

29 Right concentration Focus your mind with practices such as meditation.

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