Before Buddha had started teaching, many people were ignorant of their feelings and could not understand a lot of their senses. Before Buddha, people suffered without understanding why. Buddha taught people how to release themselves from this daily suffering. They learned that the pathway to self-righteousness was bordered with the release from suffering.
Buddha's way of life has benefited the whole world because now people can choose to understand why we are suffering, and how we can be released from it. In the depths of India in C. 563 b. c.
, a child was born. His parents named him Siddartha Guat ama, and it was prophesied that he would one day become a universal emperor or teacher. Siddartha's father was wealthy ruler of an important tribe called 'shaky a'; 1 Young Siddartha spent his early life enclosed within the walls of the palace, where he was sheltered from anything but luxury, and serenity. He was not satisfied with only material possessions. Siddarthafelt like he needed something else in his life. So he pleaded to his father that he could become a follower of the polytheistic religion that was at that time the only religion in India.
When his father refused, Siddartha stood in one place for days on end, until his father agreed. So Siddartha left his enclosed palace and set out on his own. Not long after he started his venture out of his home, Siddartha ran across four things he had never seen before. These four things were to be called the four signs. The four signs were; old age, sickness, death, and true serenity.
These four men were really gods put there so Siddartha could learn what else lies beyond the pure luxury that he knows so well. Siddartha soon realized that the first three men stood for the presence of suffering, and the fourth man stood for the release of suffering. From that point on, Siddartha knew that his mission would be to solve the riddle of suffering and figure out a way to overcome it. He found a Bo tree nearby and swore he would sit beneath the tree and contemplate the reasoning behind suffering until he could solve the riddle.
There hes at until after 49 days, when he rose and found the holy men whom he had made friends with, he gave his first sermon, and soon he had a whole group of followers. By reciting his first sermon, Siddartha was " setting in motion the wheel of the law'; 2 It was apparent that Siddartha had taken a major step toward enlightenment. His many trusted followers had noticed this and they gave him the name 'Buddha'; . Buddha is a western Indian Sanskrit name. 'Budh'; meaning 'to wake up, or to know'; .
Buddha's goal was to escape the cycle of rebirth, and to be released from suffering. Some of Buddha's more famous teachings were the art of self realization. Self realization is finding inner sanction within oneself. Buddha believed that material possessions were not important in following the long road to self realization. Buddha also taught the path to self righteousness which was called the eightfold path. The eightfold path was based on Right Knowledge, or knowledge of what life is about.
This path would teach discipline to oneself through usage of clarity, and speaking kindly, as well as a clear devotion to being on the way to enlightenment. One must always reflect on their behavior and the reasons for it as well. No lying, cheating, stealing, killing, drinking, and sexual offenses would be tolerated. Buddha would reiterate that all life is suffering, pain, and misery. He would also teach that suffering has a cause, and can be overcome through the destroying of selfish craving.
People who chose to be Buddhist Monks (men and women) were run every day by meditation, prayer, and sacred rituals. These customs were believed to keep them on the eightfold path. Serious Buddhist monks disregard any difference between humans and animals, and they believe equal compassion should be given to all. Buddhist philosophy is subtle, yet complex; their beliefs grow from traditions not yet recognized by our westernized ideas and customs. Buddhist monks dedicate themselves to Buddhism, and are willing to do anything to find inner peace. Buddhism was a major role in a monk's life.
'It was a reaction against war in itself, but it was also a movement against the ritual sacrificing used in Hinduism'; 3. Poverty, celibacy, and non-violence were the 3 essential parts in the life of monk. They believed in no form of private property, except ones own cloak. Monks also believed that the only way food can be obtained is by begging for it.
They needed to gather 'alms'; 4 each day so they could eat. The Buddhist Monk rejected things that might be very tempting to a regular person. They believed that they could only grow spiritually stronger by refusing such things. Buddha was a very wise man, and he knew that there must be a way to overcome selfishness, and to destroy pain and suffering. He also knew that to do such things, we must give up the things we enjoy doing. All life has a purpose, and in order to live life to the fullest, we must overcome craving, and start feeling compassion for one and all beings of the universe.
If the whole world was run like the Buddha taught, there would be no wars. Everyone would live equally, and we would all share the meaning of absolute peacefulness.