Welcome to Buddhism.Works!
There’s no single source of truth
When changing something as dramatic as one's worldview, one will...Read More
Buddhism in the News – 21 October 2022
News and articles from the world of Buddhism. Please comment...Read More
Over 507 Million People Worldwide are Buddhists*
Buddhism is the 4th-largest religion** in the world.
Considered by many to be more of a philosophy than a religion, Buddhism has no creator-god and its founder claimed neither to be a deity nor a prophet.
Instead, it began as the product of the rational analysis of the human condition - combined with a great deal of meditative effort - on the part of a man known to history as Gautama Buddha, Siddhārtha Gautama, Shakyamuni Buddha, or simply the Buddha.
** The term “religion” is used because that’s how it is commonly seen.
It is said that Siddhārtha realized that one needed neither extreme (hedonism or asceticism) but would fair better on "the middle path" of a balanced life.
Born a prince, it is said that his birth was accompanied by a prophecy that he was destined either to become a great king or a great spiritual leader. Desiring the former, it is said that his father strove to keep young Siddhārtha from the harsher realities of the world. Nevertheless, the young man soon came to see the suffering of the people who’d been born in less fortunate environments, and he sought out on a spiritual quest to find answers to the questions that arose within him.
Legend has it that after six years of asceticism, Siddhārtha was in a near-death state. He had grown frustrated that traditional spiritual methods of his time had failed to give him the answers he sought, and he sat down at the base of a tree, had a meal, and abandoned the path of extreme self-denial upon which he’d trod. It was there, in that state, that the answers finally came.
Over the centuries, the original message of Buddhism has picked up a lot of baggage.
The purpose of this site is to share, in plain and human terms, the value of the historical Buddha’s realization and message.