Buddhism Paper

Topics: Buddhism, Gautama Buddha, Mahayana Pages: 5 (727 words) Published: June 28, 2015


Buddhism Paper
Collin Todd
REL/133
June 15, 2015
Calvin Habig
Buddhism Paper
In this weeks paper I will be talking about Buddhism and its basic teachings. I will go over how Buddhism started and the life of Buddha. I will also be discussing the basic teachings of Buddhism. Lastly I will discuss Mahayana, a school of Buddhism and why it is unique. History of Buddhism

In the 6th century, Buddha Shakyamuni founded Buddhism. He was born a royal prince in a city called Lumbini, which is now northern India. His parents originally gave him the name Siddhartha. People always predicated wonderful things would come from him in the future. In his early years he lived as a prince in his royal palace but when he was 29 years old he retired to the forest where he followed a spiritual life of meditation ("About Buddhism", 2007). After six years of mediation he attained enlightenment under the Bodhi Tree. After his enlightenment he was asked to teach the introduction to Buddhism. As a result of this request, Buddha rose from meditation and taught the first Wheel of Dharma ("About Buddhism", 2007). These teachings included the Sutra of the Four Noble Truths, which is the primary source of Hinayana Buddhism. In the Hinayana teachings, the Buddha explained how to attain liberation for one self, and in the Mahayana teachings he explained how to attain enlightenment for the sake of others. In all Buddha Shakyamuni gave eighty-four thousand teachings ("About Buddhism", 2007). Basic Teachings of Buddhism

One day, the Buddha sat under a shade tree and realized how beautiful the countryside was. But among all of this beauty he realized how much unhappiness was still in the world. He asked himself many questions but could never find the answers. But during his enlightenment he did find the answers. He discovered the three great truths. These three truths are, nothing is lost in the universe, everything changes, and the law of cause and effect. In the first great truth Buddha states that nothing is lost in the universe. He believed that a dead leaf sprouts and becomes a new plant. He believed we were the same as everything. The second great truth is everything changes. He believed that everything is always changing. According to "Following The Buddha's Footsteps" (N.D.), “Life is like a river flowing on and on, ever-changing. Sometimes it flows slowly and sometimes swiftly. It is smooth and gentle in some places, but later on snags and rocks crop up out of nowhere.” The third great truth is the law of cause and effect, which is also known as karma. The Buddha believed that nothing ever happens to us unless we deserve it to happen. The Buddha taught that we are the way we are because of our past life. Mahayana Buddhism

Mahayana Buddhism emerged in the first century CE, as the first accessible interpretation of Buddhism. It is the primary form of Buddhism in China, Japan, Tibet and Mongolia. Theravada and Mahayana have very many similarities but also have many differences. They both accept the Pali Canon as their sacred sculpture. But unlike Theravada Buddhism, Mahayana Buddhist hope to become bodhisattvas. Bodhisattvas are saints who have become enlightened, but delay nirvana so they may help others attain it. Mahayana Buddhist teach that enlightenment can be attained in a lifetime by anyone who puts his or her mind to it. Mahayana Buddhism tends to also be more religious than any of the Buddhism schools. Conclusion

In conclusion, the Buddha gave up his lie to make the world a better place. He devoted everything to make sure it happened and so that he also could pass along his teachings. Before I started this class I knew very little about Buddhism and always thought it was a very strange religion. But being a non-religious person and finding out that Buddhism is actually not a religion, I see myself ask the same questions the Buddha always asked himself. But now getting a better understanding of the art, I find myself very fond...

References: About Buddhism. (2007). Retrieved from http://www.aboutbuddhism.org/history-of-
buddhism.htm/
Following the Buddha 's Footsteps. (N.D.). Retrieved from
http://online.sfsu.edu/rone/Buddhism/footsteps.htm
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