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BUDDHISM

Desmond Boyle
Jeffrey Chin
FOUNDER
 Siddhartha Gautama (Gautama Buddha) was the founder of Buddhism
and was born in present day Nepal. Siddhartha was born in a royal
Hindu family and would have had several roles as a Prince in his
community. He eventually moved to India to have a more meaningful
role in people’s personal lives.
HISTORICAL CONTEXT OF FOUNDING
 After forty-nine days of meditation Gautama Buddha was awakened,
otherwise known as reaching enlightenment. After reaching
enlightenment, under a Bodhi tree in Bodh Gaya India, he promised to
spread the knowledge he just learned about how to end suffering.
SYMBOLS
 The eight-spoked wheel symbolizes the Buddha’s turning of the Wheel
of Truth or Law. There are eight spokes to reference the Noble Eightfold
Path of Buddhism, which is the path Buddhists believe can end suffering
in their lives. This path involves becoming more wise, righteous, and
thoughtful in life.
SYMBOLS
 The Bodhi Tree symbolizes the reaching of enlightenment, because
under this tree Siddhartha Gautama reached enlightenment for the first
time. Reaching enlightenment is one of the greatest single achievements
a Buddhist can reach.
SYMBOLS
 The throne refers to Siddhartha Gautama’s royal ancestry. The throne
also presents the idea that enlightenment is the pinnacle of the spirtual
world. The lion is a symbol for power, integrity, and strength in the
Buddhism religion.
DEITY'S NAME
 Buddhists, for the most part, argue strongly against the principle of an
all powerful deity. Siddhartha Gautama was the founder of Buddhism
and is considered the leader of the Buddhists, but he was never
considered to be omnipotent.
LOCATION OF ORIGIN
 Buddhism was founded in the subcontinent of India. The specific region
of the first teachings of Buddhism was in a village in Northern India
called Sarnath.
MAJOR LOCATIONS TODAY
 Buddhism is popular in several nations all throughout southern Asia.
Buddhism is most commonly practiced in India, Sri Lanka, Taiwan,
Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, North and South Korea, China, and
Japan.
NUMBER OF FOLLOWERS
 There are around 376,000,000 Buddhist followers world-wide today.
This is the most amount of followers Buddhism has ever had.
WHY RELIGION SPREAD
 The religion started in India after Siddhartha Gautama reached
enlightenment, but quickly was replaced in India by Hinduism. Gautama
never stopped preaching the principles and many helped spread
Buddhism. Chinese citizens who had endured a very strict and militant
central government identified with the Buddhist message of self reliance
and no central power.
HOLY BOOK/IMPORTANT TEXTS
 Buddhists simply did not write down their sacred principles like many
other religions. Buddhists were taught the Noble Eightfold Path and the
Noble Four Truths which were used to help reach enlightenment and
end suffering.
PLACE OF WORSHIP
 Buddhists worship and meditate in a temple known as a Vihara. A
Vihara is a huge square temple with roofs that slope down and outward
from the building.
ROLES OF MEN AND WOMEN
 Buddhists did not discuss gender equality very much but based off of
their other principles women were probably not treated poorly. The only
way to reach Nirvana, which was the main goal of all Buddhists, was to
be righteous in your actions, so there was no room to abuse women.
HOLY SITES
 Lumbini
 Where Siddhartha (Gautama Buddha) was born
 Located in present-day Nepal
 Bodhgaya
 Where the Buddha achieved enlightenment
 Located in present-day Bihar, India
 Sarnath
 Where the Buddha met his five disciples and delivered his first sermon
 Located in present-day Uttar Pradesh, India
 Kushinagar
 Where the Buddha died after 45 years of travels and sermons
 Located in present-day Uttar Pradesh, India
HOLY SITES
The Buddhist New Year
HOLIDAYS
 The Buddhist New Year
 Celebrated at different times of year based on
country’s calendar or if country is primarily
Theravadin or Mahayan
 Vesak
 Celebrates the birth, enlightenment , and death
of the Buddha
 Celebrated in May (or in June on leap years)
 Magha Puja Day
 Celebrates a day of the Buddha’s teachings when
1,250 of his disciples gathered to pay respect to him
 Uposatha
 Celebrated on days with new moons, full moons, and quarter moons
 Celebrated only by Theravadin Buddhists
HOLIDAYS
 Abhidhamma Day
 Celebrates the day when the Buddha went to
Heaven to teach his mother, Abhidhamma
 Loy Krathong
 Celebrated in Thailand when rivers and canals
are full of water
 People place flowers, candles, and incense in
the water to expel misfortune
 The Ploughing Festival
 Celebrates the Buddha’s first moment of enlightenment
 Aslha Puja Day
 Celebrated on the eighth month of the lunar calendar
 Celebrates the first day of the Buddha’s teaching
Avalokitesvara
HOLIDAYS
 The Festival of the Tooth
 Celebrates the Buddha’s sacred tooth,
which is held in a casket in a temple in
Sri Lanka
 Ulambana
 Celebrates ancestors and the dead
 Avalokitesvara’s Birthday
 Celebrates Avalokitesvara’s birth, who was a symbol of compassion
 Bodhi Day
 Celebrates the enlightenment of Siddhartha Gautama
MAJOR BELIEFS: CREATION STORY
 Major beliefs are influenced by Hinduism
 Eternal life cycle of reincarnation
 However, beginning of life does not concern the Buddha
 The Buddha says that the matter does not affect the “fundamentals of religion”
 “There still remains birth, old age, death, sorrow, lamentation, misery, grief, and
despair.”

Malunkyaputta The Buddha


MAJOR BELIEFS: END TIMES STORY
 Death leads to rebirth into a new life
 All events in life is a consequence of actions
done in the past life (Karma)
 Cycle of Rebirth is escaped only by
achieving Nirvana
 Nirvana: unborn, unoriginated, uncreated,
unformed – achieved by ultimate purity of
life
Siddha-Shila – where liberated souls reside
(Hinduism, representative of Buddhist Nirvana)
MAJOR BELIEFS: COMMANDS &
LAWS
 The Four Noble Truths
 All life is marked by suffering
 Suffering is caused by desire
and attachment
 Suffering can be stopped
 The way to end suffering is to
follow the Noble Eightfold Path
MAJOR BELIEFS: COMMANDS &
LAWS
 The Noble Eightfold Path
 Right knowledge
 Right intention
 Right speech
 Right action
 Right livelihood
 Right effort
 Right mindfulness
 Right concentration
MAJOR BELIEFS: PURPOSE OF LIFE

 To End Suffering
 Follow the Noble Eightfold Path
 This Path leads to better Karma
and a life purity
 A pure and enlightened soul can
ultimately achieve Nirvana
INFLUENCE ON ART AND
ARCHITECTURE
 Buddhists had many symbols to represent their different beliefs. These
symbols inspired a great deal of religious art that is still cherished to this
day. The slanted roofs of the Viharas would become a common fixture
in Asian building design.