Life of Shakyamuni Buddha
Rev. Alan Sakamoto
Orange County Buddhist Church

I. Introduction

  1. Real historical person.
  2. Lived 560 — 480 BCE or 460 — 380 BCE
  3. Accounts of his life and teachings were compiled after his death with an emphasis placed on his philosophy and teaching.

II. Early Life — Siddhartha Gautama

  1. Born to the leader of the Shakya clan.
  2. Current day Nepal.
  3. Father = Suddhodana.
  4. Mother = Maya
  5. Born in Lumbini Garden.
  6. Mother passed away soon after giving birth.
  7. Wise men forecast that he would be either a great king or a famous religious leader.
  8. Little mentioned of his childhood.
  9. Skilled in martial arts and letters. This would be natural since he was being groomed to be the next king.
  10. Married Yasodhara.
  11. Son = Rahula (obstacle).
  12. Story of the Four Gates

Ill. Renunciation left the Royal world.

  1. Alara Kalama
  2. Uddaka Ramaputta
  3. Went out on his own
    1. Sat under the Bodhi tree.
    2. Fought with Mara.

IV. Enlightenment

  1. Hesitated to share his knowledge with the rest of the world.
  2. Dharma is not easy to understand.
    1. Contrary to the flow of this world.

V. Teaching

  1. Deer Park
    1. Four Noble Truths
    2. Eightfold Path
  2. Great Physician
    1. Taught based on the needs of the people
      1. Angulimala – limitation of language
      2. 5 Ascetics – non spoken language
      3. Cuapanthaka – difficulty in remembering
      4. Kisagotami – mustard seed

VI. Death

  1. 80 years old
  2. Between a pair of sala trees where he lie down on his right side, feet atop another, head pointing north, face looking west – Nirvana Pose.
  3. Last words of the Buddha