Question: Who was Gautama Buddha, or Sakya-Muni?

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The founder of Buddhism about the 5th century B.C., born a Hindu, of an intensely contemplative nature, the son of a king, who did everything in his power to tempt him from a religious life, from which, however, in his contemplation of the vanity of existence, nothing could detain him; retired into solitude at the age of 30, as Sakyamuni, i. e. solitary of the Sakyas, his tribe; consulted religious books, could get no good out of them, until, by-and-by, he abstracted himself more and more from everything external, when at the end of ten years, as he sat brooding under the Bo-tree alone with the universe, soul with soul, the light of truth rose full-orbed upon him, and he called himself henceforth and gave himself out as Buddha, i. e. the Enlightened; now he said to himself, "I know it all," as Mahomet in his way did after him, and became a preacher to others of what had proved salvation to himself, which he continued to do for 40 years, leaving behind him disciples, who went forth without sword, like Christ's, to preach what they, like Christ's, believed was a gospel to every creature.
by BetterThanKen
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