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The Sermon at Benares Summary Analysis and Explanation By Buddha
About the Poet Buddha
|Born||8 April 563 BC, Lumbini, Nepal|
|Full Name||Siddhartha Gautama|
The Sermon at Benares Summary of the Lesson
Gautam Buddha was born in 563 BC in a royal family. He died in 483 B.C. He was known as Prince Siddhartha Gautam. At the age of twelve, he was sent away for schooling. He studied all the sacred Hindu scriptures. At the age of sixteen, he married a princess, had a son and lived for ten years as befitted royalty.
At the age of twenty-five years, he came across a sick man, an aged man, a funeral procession and finally a monk begging for alms. These sights moved him so much that he decided to leave his family.
He at once became a beggar and went out into the world to seek enlightenment concerning the sorrows he had witnessed. He wandered for seven years in search of wisdom and truth. Finally, he sat down under a peepal tree where he vowed to stay until enlightenment came.
Enlightened after seven days, he renamed the tree as the ‘Bodhi Tree’. ‘Bodhi Tree’ means the tree of wisdom. He became known as the Buddha which means ‘enlightenment’ or ‘the awakened’. He began to teach and to share his new understanding. He gave his first sermon at Benares.
His first sermon at Benares reflects his wisdom about one inscrutable kind of suffering i.e. Death. Here Buddha tells about the universality of death which is inevitable and can not be escaped.
Once the only son of Kisa Gotami died, she wanted him to be alive. On someone’s advice she approached Buddha with a request to give her a medicine so that her only son could be alive again. After a deep thought, the Buddha asked her to bring a handful of mustard seeds.
But it must be from that house where no one had died. Kisa Gotami went from door to door to get the mustard-seeds. She found mustard-seeds in every home but she could not find a house where nobody had died. Now she realised that death was common to all.
The Buddha said in his sermon that our life is brief. It is mixed with pain. After birth, one has to die. Death spares none. We should not grieve as grieving cannot bring peace to the mind. It rather brings pain to the body. Those who want peace should not lament or complain. Those who have overcome all sorrows will become free from sorrow and are blessed. They will be in peace.