25 thoughts on “Int 2 ‘Life of the Buddha’ questions

  1. Chapter 3 Question 1

    He sees everything in a different light and doesn’t make as much of them as he knows everybody is going to die!!

  2. 4.1. What happens to Siddhartha’s mind as he sits beneath the Bodhi tree?

    One day, seated beneath the Bodhi tree (the tree of awakening) Siddhartha became deeply absorbed in meditation, his mind became relaxed, calm, settled and purified. He reflected on his experience of life, determined to penetrate its truth. Here he achieved his enlightenment.

  3. What do you understand by the phrase ‘middle way’?

    The middle way is what Siddhartha, the Buddha, believes is the equal amount of everything. Not too little and not too much. Siddhartha gave up his fast because he realised he was going to die trying to achieve enlightenment, and if he did kill himself he would have achieved nothing. After he realised this he went traveling to a near village and saw a man tuning his Sitar. He saw that if it is too loose it wont play, and if it is too tight it will snap. In the middle laid a tuneful harmony. This applies to everything in life and is what the middle way is. An equal balance of everything.

  4. How does his father ‘prepare’ the outside world for Siddhartha’s first trip outside?

    Siddhartha’s father prepares the outside by banishing all old, sick and ugly people, anything that made the world look frightening. This was to protect Siddhartha from discovering the reality of suffering.

  5. What do you understand by the phrase ‘middle way’?

    By the phase the middle way, I understand that it is neither of too extremes. For example, the sitar that the Buddha saw in the story. When the strings were to slack, it didn’t play, but when they were too tight, it snapped. It is an equal balance of the two, so it applies to everything, it is better to an equal amount of two things, rather than too much of one.

  6. The environment that Siddharha’s father, the king, made for him inside the palace was said to be a perfect and seductive environment. He got him female servants to dance for him and feed him.

  7. 3. The women rot and fall into the Earth, and then it is silent. Siddhartha has now reached enlightenment.

  8. CHAPTER 1-
    6.What was Siddhartha like growing up?
    The Buddha lived in 4th or 5th (no one can be certain) century B.C. in India. When growing up, he lived in a palace walls away from the sufferings of life; sickness, age and death. Siddhartha (Buddha) was given the best of the best by his father who wanted him to only be exposed to the luxuries of life. He enjoyed archery and wrestling. After he married and had a child, Siddhartha ventured out of the palace, only to discover sickness, age and death.

  9. CHAPTER 2-
    5. What does each of the signs make him realise?
    Each of the sings makes him realise that there is a cruel picture created of the world, where suffering is a big aspect of life.
    It also makes him realise that eventually everyone gets sick and dies.

  10. When Siddhartha left the palace he was shocked to see that the life that his father had prepared for him in the palace was different to what was actually happening in real life. He saw an old man on the street for the first time and learned that everyone ages and becomes old and is something that you cannot escape from, after that he saw a man with a horrible disease feeling very ill and poorly, Siddhartha then learned that everyone/anyone can become sick and saw a corpse lying motionless on the ground learning another very important thing about life which is that everyone is going to dye at some point.

  11. Chapter 4 – Q9. Why might someone become a monk or a nun?

    In Buddhism, someone might become a monk or nun simply to meditate and live a peaceful life or because they wish to find enlightenment. People driven to a quiet life of contemplation, a need to do “good” in the world, or who feel they have received a “higher calling” from their god or philosophical beliefs would see the job as just right for them.

  12. Is the story of the four signs symbolic? Does it matter?

    Yes as each journey he made is an aspect of his life which was hidden from him when he was living in luxury.

  13. Good, it’s also quite hard to believe that Siddhartha could have grown up in a busy palace having absolutely no idea about these things. Possible but unlikely. That’s why a lot of people say it it a story conveying ‘existential realities’ (things we all have to face up to at some point).

  14. Spot on. Next time try and write your answer in a way that’ll make it really useful for revising – even if you don’t have the questions at home.

  15. Queen Maya had the strangest dream Four angels carried her high into white mountain peaks and clothed her in flowers. A magnificent white bull elephant bearing a white lotus in its trunk approached Maya and walked around her three times. Then the elephant struck her on the right side with its trunk and vanished into her.9 months later the Queen went into labour, she was out in the palace gardens and she reached up to touch the blossoms, her son was born.It was send to be a painless birth and then the Queen and her son were showered with perfumed blossoms, and two streams of sparkling water poured from the sky to bathe them. And the infant stood, and took seven steps, and proclaimed “I alone am the World-Honored One!”

  16. Mara refers to obstacles or obstruction against reaching Nirvana. There are 4 central categories:
    1. Death. Death obstructs a persons ability to achieve enlightenment as they can not practice if they are dead.
    2. Defilements. They run riot in your mind causing you to have bad thoughts and actions.
    3. Five Aggregates. All other thoughts or actions not following the 4 noble truths.
    4. Mara of heaven. Also known as the demon king. He is the king of the highest level of the heaven of desire. He enjoys controlling humans therefore tries to obstruct humans practicing to achieve Nirvana.

  17. When an enlightened person dies, they break free of the constant, unending cycle of of death, rebirth and perpetual suffering, and reach Nirvana. It is perhaps innacurate to speak of Nirvana as a place people go to, (like heaven) as Nirvana is a band from the 80s

  18. Chapter 4 – Question 4

    The final realisation that is understood as the Buddha’s enlightenment is that the only way to end all suffering is to remove all greed and hatred in the mind. You have to overcome all the selfishness, you have to destroy the causes of unhappiness completely. Because the hate has now been removed from the heart, you can have pure love in your hearts which will lead to pure happiness and peace unlike anything you’ve felt before.

  19. CHAPTER 1 QUESTION 4

    Q How and what did the Holy man predict as Siddharta’s future?
    A Prince Siddharta was born with tattoos and markings all over his body. The Holy man predicted that when he grew up he would either be a rich and famous political figure or an important spiritual man.

  20. Chapter 3 Question 2
    He turned his back on the meditation he learned in the woods because he still had doubts and unanswered questions.

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