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The Story

of Buddha

Young Siddhartha Gautama lived a life of luxury in his


fathers palace. His father forbade him to ever leave in
case he became a Holy Man as prophesied at his birth.
Siddhartha lived happily and married a beautiful
princess for his wife.

When he was 29, Siddhartha left the palace


secretly as he was curious about the outside
world. He saw an old man, a sick man and a
funeral procession. He was very upset and
began to question the meaning of life.

He also met a Holy Man, who appeared to be content.


He asked him how to find the meaning of life and is
told that if he gives up all earthly pleasures and
comforts the answer will come to him.

Siddhartha returned to the


palace, shaved his head, put on
simple robes and said goodbye to
his family. He spent 6 years
travelling with the Holy monks
around Northern India, starving
himself and seeking the answers
to his questions,
What is the purpose of my life?
Why do we suffer?
What is death?
How can I really be happy?
He found that the Holy
Mans advice did not work
for him, so he left the
monks and travelled on his
own.

He came to a holy fig tree and rested in its shade.


For 46 days he stayed there thinking deeply and
paying no attention to what was going on around
him.

At last he realised the answer to his questions was


with him all along. He accepted the gift of food and
drink and began to teach what he had learnt during
his long meditation.

He travelled back to the Holy men and spoke to


them in the Deer Park of his enlightenment. They
named him The Buddha which means
The Enlightened One

The Buddha is not a god, he was a human being just


like us. Buddhists believe he is special because he
taught us how to reach Nirvana and gain peace
within ourselves.

At the heart of
the Buddha's
teaching lie The
Four Noble
Truths and The
Eightfold Path
which lead the
Buddhist
towards the
path of
Enlightenment.

The Noble Eight Fold Path


The Noble Eight-fold Path
focuses the mind on being
fully aware of our
thoughts and actions, and
developing wisdom by
understanding the Four
Noble Truths.
It is the way Buddhists
should live their lives. The
Buddha said that people
should avoid extremes.
They should not have or
do too much, but neither
should they have or do too
little.
The 'Middle Way' is the
best.

Nirvana
The path to
Enlightenment
is through the
practice and
development
of wisdom,
morality and
meditation.

Make your own Dharma chakra


You will need a circle of thin
card or thick paper and some
scissors.
Fold your circle four times, each
time in half. (4 Noble Truths)
Cut out a triangle shape from the
centre of the folded edge.
Snip off the point from the tip of
your folded triangle.
Unfold your Dharma chakra.
Write each of the Eightfold Path
rights on the eight spokes.

This represents the Wheel of Life

Eightfold Path
Right View (understanding)
Right Thought
Right Speech
Right Action
Right Livelihood
Right Effort
Right Mindfulness
Right Contemplation (concentration)