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Gautama Bhuddha

  • Date Submitted: 05/26/2014 02:34 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 42.7 
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Sidhartha Gautama (also known as the Buddha “the awakened one”) was the leader and founder of a sect of wanderer ascetics (Sramanas), one of many sects which existed at that time all over India. This sect came to be known as Sangha, to distinguish it from other similar communities. The teachings of Siddhartha Gautama are considered the core of Buddhism: After his death, the community he founded slowly evolved into a religious-like movement which was finally established as a state religion in India by the time of Emperor Ashoka, during the 3rd century BCE.

Siddhartha is a Sanskrit personal name which means "He Who Achieves His Goal". The name is best known in English as the title of the novel by Hermann Hesse, in which the main character (who actually is not the Buddha) is named Siddhartha. The Sanskrit family name Gautama means "descendants of Gotama". Gotama is the name of several figures in ancient India, including a poet of the Rig Veda and also Aksapada Gautama (or Gotama), a famous Indian logician. Pali literature normally refers to Siddhartha Gautama as Gotama Buddha.

Traditionally, the meaning of the term Buddha is understood as a person who has awakened from the deep sleep of ignorance. In Indian tradition, the expression was already used before, during, and after the life of Siddhartha by many religious communities, but it became most strongly linked to the Buddhist tradition.

Historical Context

At the time when Siddhartha Gautama lived, Northern India was composed of numerous and small independent states competing for resources. This was a time when the traditional religious order in India was being challenged by a number of new philosophical and religious schools that were not in line with the orthodox Indian religious views. The Vedic philosophy, theology and metaphysics, along with its ever growing complexity of rituals and sacrificial fees, was being questioned. Materialistic schools were running wild in India, undermining the reputation...

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