The other major challenge to orthodox Vedism was founded by the son of a chief of a region called the Shakyas. This region lay among the foothills of the Himalayas in the farthest northern regions of the plains of India in Nepal.
Peace lives the heart and soul of every human being, with mindfulness being the key to opening its door. The Jade Buddha shows you your reflection and reminds you that peace is within you, not around you.
There was a small country in what is now southern Nepal that was ruled by a clan called the Shakyas. The head of this clan, and the king of this country, was named Shuddodana Gautama, and his wife was the beautiful Mahamaya. Mahamaya was expecting her first born. She had had a strange dream in which a baby elephant had blessed her with his trunk, which was understood to be a very auspicious sign to say the least.
Lord Buddha, the Sakyan Prince, the real refuge of all men, devas and brahmas, had fulfilled the ten perfections (Parami) since the life of Sumedha. Four Asankhyeyyas and one hundred-thousand world-cycles ago, the future Buddha named Sumedha was the only son of a rich man at Amaravati, the Royal City. He came of rich parental lineage, both of whom were pure in morality and race.
I was the first reader of the Life of the Buddha written by Mrs. Radhika Abeysekera. She presents the Dhamma to children in a very attractive way. On the day I was in Winnipeg, I understood the value of her voluntary gift of Dhamma (Dhammadana) to the children.
This uplifting poem has always been one for our favourites, so it's lovely to see this new and well-bound edition. Though written more than a hundred years ago, it still retains the power to move us in a way that no prose rendering of the life of the Buddha can. Its vivid, jewelled language makes us see the eagle wheeling in the sky, the snake beneath the rock,the moonlight shining on the floor while all in the palace sleep. The spreading branches of the Tree of Wisdom...And we cannot but admire the courage, determination and self-sacrifice of the Indian price who, out of compassion, left his palace to find a remedy for the sufferings of the world.
I extend my greetings to participants of the 11th Anniversary Celebrations and International Buddhist Conference on the United Nations Day of Vesak 2014, being hosted by the National Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (NVBS).
The Seeker's Glossary of Buddhism
By Sutra Translation Committee of USA/Canada
This is a revised and expanded edition of The Seeker's Glossary of Buddhism. The text is a compendium of excerpts and quotations from some 350 works by monks, nuns, professors, scholars and other laypersons from nine different countries, in their own words or in translation. The editors have merely organized the material, adding a few connecting thoughts of their own for ease in reading.
Gautama the Buddha was born in northern India about 2,500 years ago. The exact place of his birth is understood to be the Lumbini Garden, which nowadays lies just inside the border of the little Himalayan kingdom of Nepal.