Essay about Buddhism

6638 Words 27 Pages

In a world filled with technology and industry, it can become increasingly difficult to take a step back and view the world in its natural state. In essence, we are humans trying to figure out how we fit into a world seemingly contradictory to the path of humanity. We look to nature for answers. We look to each other, as well as to one another’s accomplishments for these same answers. In the end, our entire species comes to the same conclusion. In order to fully understand our world, we must first seek inner-peace and come to understand how we can relate to one another on a spiritual level. We must strive for this alternative consciousness if we, as a race are to escape our culture’s self-imposed shackles.
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"Devotion to the pleasures of sense, a low practice of villagers, a practice unworthy, unprofitable, the way of the world [on one hand]; and [on the other] devotion to self- mortification, which is painful, unworthy and unprofitable. By avoiding these two extremes the Buddha has gained knowledge of that middle path which giveth vision, which giveth knowledge, which causeth calm, special knowledge, enlightenment, Nirvana."

Siddhartha Gautama was born in 566 B.C. His father was the ruler over a district near the Himalayas which is today the country of Nepal. He sheltered his son from the outside world and confined him to the palace where his luxurious upbringing was one of pleasure and wealth. Great lengths were gone to see that nothing 'unpleasant' tainted his pretty world. In part, this was due to the lavish lifestyle his family was accustomed to; but his father had some alterior motives in mind during all these pleasantries.

When Siddartha was born his father brought in fortune tellers to discern his future. They agreed he wasn't an ordinary child, but their predictions were ambiguous. It was said that if he succeeded his father he would conquer the world and unify India, if he forsook the world he would become a 'world redeemer'. His father made every effort to keep his son on course. Before Siddartha was to leave the palace, scouts were sent out ahead of him to clear the roads of the sick,

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