The chief aim of the Buddhism is the dissolution of all the causes of the human suffering. There is a large number of Buddhist spread all over the world. Buddhism has spread throughout the Central Asia, Sri Lanka, Tibet
, Southeast Asia, as well as the East Asian countries of China, Mongolia, Korea, Japan and Vietnam. Buddhism is ranked as the 4th largest religion in the world, after Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism. The fundamental principle of Buddhism is to follow the middle path. Buddhism teaches its followers to perform good and wholesome actions and to purify and train the mind. These practices are aimed at ending the suffering of cyclic existence.
Four Noble Truths of Buddhism are -
- Life is suffering;
- Suffering is due to attachment;
- Attachment can be overcome
- There is a path for accomplishing this
So as to remove the causes the Buddha prescribed an Eight-fold Path:
Right speech, Right action, Right livelihood, Right effort, Right mindfulness, Right concentration, Right attitude and Right view), elaborated below:-
- Right view is the true understanding of the four noble truths.
- Right aspiration is the true desire to free oneself from attachment, ignorance, and hatefulness.
- Right speech involves abstaining from lying, gossiping, or hurtful talk.
- Right action involves abstaining from hurtful behaviors, such as killing, stealing, and careless sex.
- Right livelihood means making your living in such a way as to avoid dishonesty and hurting others, including animals.
- Right effort is a matter of exerting oneself in regards to the content of one's mind: Bad qualities should be abandoned and prevented from arising again; Good qualities should be enacted and nurtured.
- Right mindfulness is the focusing of one's attention on one's body, feelings, thoughts, and consciousness in such a way as to overcome craving, hatred, and ignorance.
- Right concentration is meditating in such a way as to progressively realize a true understanding of imperfection, impermanence, and non-separateness.
Like other religions, Buddhist goes on pilgrimages to visit their holy places. Among the various Buddhist pilgrimage sites the most important are those, which are attached to Buddha in some or the other way. According to Buddha, one can have the religious feelings & atonement by visiting below mentioned places:-
One of the major Buddhist pilgrimage site located in Nepal. It is around 122kms from the city of Gorakhpur in India. Lumbini, the birth place of the Lord Buddha has vast importance to the Buddhist. The site is famous for its serenity and the profound natural beauty. The places of attractions are famous Maya Devi Temple, The Ashokan pillar, the Buddhist monastery etc. To get the peace of mind and soul, each and every year a large number of people travel to this place.
Bodhgaya another famous site provides people adequate knowledge of Buddhism. Lord Buddha travelled a lot in search of enlightenment but his search finally ended in Bodh Gaya. Bodhgaya is 7 miles from Gaya and is situated near the river Phalgu. Bodhgaya is fully covered by forests and agricultural lands and is seems as if it is out of this world. The Mahabodhi temple and the Mahabodhi tree are the major attractions of Bodhgaya.
Sarnath is 10kms from Varanasi. It is very peaceful. Buddha delivered his first sermon in Sarnath . This very reason makes it largely visited by Buddhist people. Some of the chief attractions of the place are the Dhameka stupa
, Asokan pillar
Kushinagar is around 53kms west of Gorakhpur. It is the holy place ofMaha-Parinirvana.
Apart from the above sites there are various other important Buddhist pilgrimage sites located all over the world.