1. Born In Royalty
Gautama Buddha is known to live a very modest and simple life yet many people do not know that he was born as a prince of the Shakya Clan in Nepal. King Suddhodhana was the chief of the Shakya Clan in India while his mother Queen Maha Maya was known to be the princess of Koli. He was born in Lubini in a garden under the sal tree. Inspite of royalty, he still chose the spiritual path and became Buddha. He was later married to Yasodhara and had a son named Rahula. Even the birth of his son could not give him happiness. He then realized that worldly pleasure and material luxury were not the keys to happiness but only the way of enlightenment was.
2. Destined Before Birth
Before the birth of Gautama Buddha , an astrologer predicted that Shuddhodhana’s son will either be a great and known holy man or he will become a great king. After this prediction, his father wanted him to stay away from the religious teachings in fear of him becoming a holy man. He built three palaces for him with all the luxuries of life so that he does not have any desire to see the outside world. He was not allowed to step outside the palace and thus, he had a lavish life in his early years.
3. Hesitation In Teaching
The one who taught the whole world about Buddhism, was himself hesitant to teach at the first place. He deeply felt that the things he knows and the knowledge he has is very difficult for the commoners to understand and also very hard for him to put into words. He believed that if one is not disciplined it is not possible to attain the reality. Later, he was convinced that he could teach the people the way of enlightenment and thus, moved his way forward. Lord Buddha gave his first preaching in Sarnath in Uttar Pradesh.
4. Buddha's teachings
Buddha’s teachings were spread by nonviolent methods such as word of mouth or written on stone buildings. He taught the 3 major tenants to his followers which said not to be ignorant, not to hate others and not to get angry. One day while taking a ride through the countryside, he saw an aged man, then a sick man and later acorpse and a wandering ascetic. There he realized what the reality was. He was moved by the truth of life and thus continued in his way of teaching.
5. Truth About The Physical Appearance
Buddha was not as chubby as he was shown in various depictions. He was portrayed as a chubby character because it was a symbol of happiness in the east. He practiced moderation in all things and fasted regularly. He spent most of his time spreading knowledge about holiness and preached people the way of enlightenment. In fact, he walked hundreds of miles to preach goodness to everyone.
Buddha returned to the Palace but he was not able enjoy the pleasure of the palace. He simply wandered around in the Palace alone in the night. He understood the fact that beautiful things will eventually come to an end. The news of the birth of his son couldn’t give him happiness,it became that hard for him to find joy. So he decided and gave up all the royalty he was born with and changed into the clothes of a beggar. He left the palace and went out into the world to find joy for himself.
7. Buddha's Search For Answers
After leaving the palace, it was very difficult for Gautama Buddha to find a teacher for himself. He wanted a guru who could teach him about the truth of the world and about different religions. He wandered in robes and tried to learn from the wisest teachers. He wanted to learn about the sufferings but none of the teachers could tell him how to end the sufferings.Therefore, he finally decided to go in search of the answer all by himself.This is how Buddha started his quest for answers.
8. United Again
King Suddhodana was Buddha's father. After leaving the palace and leading a simple life eventually,Buddha reconciled with his father. His wife was Yashodhara who became a nun and disciple. She was devoted to Buddha that she followed his teachings and became his disciple. Buddha had a son named Rahula who became the youngest monk at the age of 7 and started living with his father. This is an interesting fact that even his son followed his foot steps and became a monk.
9. Depiction Of Buddha As A Deity
Buddha was a person who based his teaching on the oneness of mankind and the equality among people. This ultimately made him to be portrayed as God. Many circles of Hinduism, still consider the Buddha to be a deity. He is considered as one of the multiple manifestations of the god Vishnu. He was considered as a deity because of ever-growing goodness and humility for the people. However, in a religion like Hinduism , where there are thousands of Gods, Buddha too was considered as one and placed amongst those.
10. The remains of Buddha
Anancient Buddhist text called as The Mahaparinirvana Sutra, describes how his followers cremated the Buddha after he passed away. This happened when Buddha was living the last days of his life. The remains were divided into eight portions and each of these portions were sent to eight different states visited by the Buddha during his lifetime. In each state in a stupa was built in order to house the remains. During the third century BC, Ashoka ordered these eight stupas to be opened,and the cremated remains of the Buddha were redistributed into a higher number of portions.