Elacqua, Joseph, et. al. "Buddhism Overview." Faithology.com. Faithology, 11 March 2013. Web. 19 June 2013.
Elacqua, J., et. al. (2013, Mar 11). Buddhism Overview. Faithology.
Elacqua, Joseph, et. al. "Buddhism Overview" Faithology, LLC. Last modified March 11, 2013.
Faithology, LLC, 2012. (Accessed Jun 19, 2013).. Buddhism Overview.
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- Last Updated: March 11, 2013
- Originally Published: June 22, 2012
Buddhism was founded in northeastern India during the 5th or 4th century BCE by a man named Siddhartha Gautamanirvana, Gautama became known as the Buddha. The goal of the Buddhist religion is to eliminate suffering by achieving the same enlightenment as Gautama. Although Buddhism is no longer commonly practiced on the Indian subcontinent, about 370 million people throughout the world practice some form of Buddhism today.(c. 6th- c. 4th cen. BCE). After attaining
- : Though they follow various paths, Buddhist sects have the same aim—to attain nirvāṇa.
The Three Jewels: Buddhists revere and uphold the Three Jewels of Buddhism:
- The Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama
- The Dharma
- Doctrine: The doctrines held by Hindus include:
- Avoiding attachment: Buddhists generally believe in avoiding attachment to all things. Attachment is often broadly defined as anything that causes an urge to “have” or “control” something else, including love. The monastic life is viewed as the main way to live freely from these attachments.
- Buddhism, which has been practiced for approximately 2,500 years, originated with the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama (c. 6th-4th cen. BCE). Gautama taught that life is suffering and that the goal of humanity is to terminate suffering through the attainment of nirvana.
- From the 5th through the 1st centuries BCE, a series of four Buddhist councils were held to standardize Buddhist doctrines, monastic regulations, and texts.
- By the 1st century CE, the Mahayana movement gained prominence in India. It is around this time that Buddhist missionaries spread the Buddhist doctrine into East and Southeast Asia, where it survives today.
- Around the 5th century CE, the Vajrayana movement began in India. It survives today in separate sects located in Japan, Tibet, and Nepal.
- During the 12th century, the invasion of India by Turkish Muslims almost completely eliminated the practice of all types of Buddhism in India.
- Since the 1890s, several attempts have been made to revive Buddhism in India, but it still remains a minority religion.
- Today, Buddhism is the fourth largest religion in the world, practiced by over 370 million adherents worldwide.
The Four Noble Truths and The Noble Eightfold Path
Buddhist doctrine can be traced to Siddhartha Gautama and his central teaching of the Four Noble Truths. According to this teaching:
- Human life in itself is suffering.
- This suffering is caused by desires or cravings.
- There is a method to stop desire, and thus stop suffering.
- The method to stop desire is the Noble Eightfold Path.
Theencompasses eight different actions that allow Buddhists to curb their desires and thus to end suffering:
- Right view – Believing in the Buddha, his teachings, and the Buddhist community.
- Right intention – Practicing Buddhism with selfless motivations.
- Right speech – Speaking positively and truthfully.
- Right action – Refraining from murder, theft, and violence.
- Right effort – Striving vigilantly to attain nirvāṇa with a positive attitude.
- Right livelihood – Refraining from taking jobs that cause violence to other creatures.
- Right concentration – Refraining from dwelling on the past and anticipating the future.
- Right mindfulness – Keeping alert for things that negatively or positively affect the body or mind.