Buddhism is a family of beliefs and practices variously described as religious, spiritual and philosophical. These are all based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha (Pali/Sanskrit for "The Awakened One"). The term 'Buddhism' is used to describe the entirety of various traditions that have developed based on these teachings. Early sources indicate that the Buddha himself referred to his teaching as the Dhamma and Discipline proclaimed by the Tathagata. Born in what is today Nepal, the Buddha lived and taught in the north-eastern region of the Indian subcontinent and most likely died around 400 BC in what is now modern India. Adherents recognize the Buddha as an awakened teacher who shared his insights to help sentient beings escape the cycle of suffering and rebirth. The Buddha's teachings provide instructions on how to understand the true nature of phenomena, end suffering, and achieve nirvana.
Buddhist meditation in Buddha Painting encompasses a variety of meditation techniques that develop mindfulness, concentration, tranquility and insight. Core meditation techniques are preserved in ancient Buddhist texts and have proliferated and diversified through the millennia of teacher-student transmissions. Non-Buddhists use these techniques for the pursuit of physical and mental health as well as for non-Buddhist spiritual aims. Buddhist meditation techniques are increasingly being employed by psychologists and psychiatrists to help alleviate a variety of health conditions such as anxiety and depression. As such, mindfulness and other Buddhist meditation techniques are being advocated in the West by innovative psychologists and Buddhist meditation expert teachers such as Jon Kabat-Zinn, Jack Kornfield, Joseph Goldstein, Tara Brach, Alan Clements, and Sharon Salzberg, who have been widely attributed with playing a significant role in integrating the healing aspects of Buddhist meditation practices with the concept of psychological awareness and healing.
Om Mani Padme Hum is the most important mantra in Buddhism. It is the six syllable mantra of the Bodhisattva of compassion Avalokiteshvara. Om Mani Padme Hum in Tibetan script. Om Mani Padme Hum inscribed on a stone. The Dalai Lama is said to be an incarnation of Avalokiteshvara, so the mantra is especially revered by his devotees. The basic English translation of Om mani padme hum is "Om Jewel in the Lotus Hum" or "Praise to the Jewel in the Lotus." However, the meaning and significance of the six Tibetan syllables have been interpreted in a variety of ways. One common interpretation is that each syllable corresponds to one of the six realms of existence and purifies the vice associated with that realm:
Om purifies bliss and pride (realm of the gods)
Ma purifies jealousy and need for entertainment (realm of the jealous gods)
Ni purifies passion and desire (human realm)
Pad purifies ignorance and prejudice (animal realm)
Me purifies poverty and possessiveness (realm of the hungry ghosts)
Hum purifies aggression and hatred (hell realm)
Among the earliest and most common symbols of Buddhism are the stupa, Dharma wheel, and the lotus flower. The dharma wheel, traditionally represented with eight spokes, can have a variety of meanings. It initially only meant royalty (concept of the "Monarch of the Wheel, or Chakravatin), but started to be used in a Buddhist context on the Pillars of Ashoka during the 3rd century BCE. The Dharma wheel is generally seen as referring to the historical process of teaching the buddhadharma; the eight spokes refer to the Noble Eightfold Path. The lotus, as well, can have several meanings, often referring to the inherently pure potential of the mind.
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