posted on Jan, 3 2004 @ 04:21 AM
Who is Buddha?
Originally posted by Jo
Does this mean that Buddha is a black man too?
Buddha can refer to the historical Buddha Shakyamuni or to anyone who has attained full enlightenment.
The Buddha who is the founder of the Buddhist religion is called Buddha Shakyamuni (or Siddhartha see below
). "Shakya" is the name of the
royal family into which he was born, and "Muni" means "Able One." Buddha Skakyamuni was born as a royal prince in 624 BC in a place called
Lumbini, which was originally in northern India but is now part of Nepal.
When the king saw the child he felt as if all his wishes had been fulfilled and he named the young prince "Siddhartha."
A short version of Siddhartha (The Historical First Buddha)
As the young prince grew up he mastered all the traditional arts and sciences without needing any instruction. He knew sixty-four different languages,
each with their own alphabet, and he was also very skilled at mathematics. He once told his father that he could count all the atoms in the world in
the time it takes to draw a single breath.
Sometimes Prince Siddhartha would go into the capital city of his father's kingdom to see how the people lived. During these visits he came into
contact with many old people and sick people. These encounters left a deep impression on his mind and led him to realize that all living beings
without exception have to experience the sufferings of birth, sickness, ageing and death.
Seeing how all living beings are trapped in this vicious circle of suffering he felt deep compassion for them, and he developed a sincere wish to free
all of them from their suffering. Realizing that only a fully enlightened Buddha has the wisdom and the power to help all living beings in this way,
he resolved to leave the palace and retire to the solitude of the forest where he would engage in profound meditation until he attained
Siddhartha then made his way to a place near Bodh Gaya in India, where he found a suitable site for meditation. After training in meditation for six
years he realized that he was very close to attaining full enlightenment, and so he walked to Bodh Gaya where, on the full moon day of the fourth
month of the lunar calendar, he seated himself beneath the Bodhi Tree in the meditation posture and vowed not to rise from meditation until he had
attained perfect enlightenment.