Short Notes on Buddhism


  • Gautama Buddha is also known with his names like Siddhartha, Sakyamuni, and Tathagata.
  • He was born in the year 563 BC (widely accepted).
  • He was born on the Vaisakha Purnima day at Lumbini, near Kapilvastu, the capital of the Sakya republic.
  • He left home at the age of 29 which is called Mahabhinishkaramn.
  • He attained Nirvana at the age of 35 on the bank of Niranjana River at Bodh Gaya, India. This is called Sambodhi.
  • His first sermon was delivered at Sarnath.
  • His first teacher was Alar Kalam Sankhya.
  • His Fist female pupil was Gautami Prajapati.
  • Gautam Buddha attained Mahaparinirvana at Kusinara in 483 BC.

Read Also: Jainism History Notes

Doctrine of Buddha

Four Noble Truth

  • Dukkha- Life is full of Sorrow
  • Dukkha Samudaya- Causes of Sorrow
  • Dukkha Nirodh- It can be stopped.
  • Dukkha Nirodh Gamini Pratipoda- Following Eight folded Path.

Eight Folded Path

  1. Right Understanding
  2. Right Speech
  3. Right Livelihood
  4. Right Mindfulness
  5. Right Thoughts
  6. Right Action
  7. Right Efforts
  8. Right Concentration

After the death of Gautam Buddha, a meeting was called by Ajatshatru called Council (Sangiti) for compiling the sayings and teachings of Gautama Buddha.

Buddhist Councils (Sangiti)

First- (483 BC)AjatshatruRajgirMahakasayapa2 Books
  1. Vinayapitak
  2. Suttapitak
Second- 383 BCKalashokaVaishaliSabakamiBuddhism divided into 2 parts.
  1.  Sthevirvedic
  2. Mahasanghika
Third- 250 BCAshokaPatliputraMogalipottasOne Book called


Fourth- 100 ADKanishkaKashmirPresident- Vasumitra

V. President- Ashwa Ghosh

Again divided
  1. Hinayana
  2. Mahayana
Fifth- 7 ADHarshvardhanKannauj

or Thaneshwar

Heun TsangVijayan


  • Vinay means discipline.
  • Pitak means basket.
  • Sutta means Knowledge.
  • Ashoka gave three gems (Ratnas)
    • Buddha
    • Dhamma
    • Sangha
  • Abhiddhamapitak is a philosophy book to make Buddhism more understanding.
  • Hinayana believed that Buddha was a normal man, not to be considered as god. (Laughing Buddha)
  • The concept of the temple was brought by Mahayana, and considered Buddha as a god, so he started constructing temples.


  • Its followers believed in the original teachings of Buddha.
  • They did not believe in idol worship.
  • Hinayana believed in Karma, taking the place of God.
  • They sought individual salvation through self-discipline and meditation.


  • They sought salvation through the grace and help of Buddha and Bodhisattvas.
  • The followers believed in idol-worships.
  • Mahayana had two chief philosophical schools: the Madhyamika and the Yogacharya

5 great events of Gautama Buddha’s Life and their Symbols-

  1. Birth: Lotus and Bull
  2. Great Renunciation: Horse
  3. Nirvana: Bodhi Tree
  4. First Sermon: Dharamachakra or Wheel
  5. Parinirana or Death: Stupa

Read More: Branches of Science

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