Zen Buddhism

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Date Submitted: 09/09/2016 05:22 PM

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Zen Buddhism

“Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything - anger, anxiety, or possessions - we cannot be free.” (Thích Nhất Hạnh, The Heart of the Buddha's Teaching: Transforming Suffering into Peace, Joy, and Liberation) What is Buddhism? What is Zen? What do Buddhism and Zen have in common? When I think of Buddhism I picture a bald man in an orange robe. This bald man lives on a mountain and lives a life of peace. This bald man cut all ties with the outside world and all materialistic things. Why does this bald man choose to live this way? What is this bald man looking for or hoping to gain?

Buddhism originated in Northern century around 5th century B.E.C. The origin of Buddhism is traced back to Siddhartha Gautama (or Gotama), who is known as Buddha. Buddha is described as or known as the, "Awakened" or "Enlightened One". This means someone who has awakened from a life of ignorance and finally see’s the world as it really is. Siddhartha grew up watching people suffer and decided to leave his home. Buddha was on a spiritual journey to find good and find a cure for suffering. This is how Buddha became a spiritual teacher and learned the journey of meditation. Meditation allowed him to let go of attachments. His ultimate goal was to reach the state of Nirvana. In Buddhism there are four Nobles truths, suffering, cause of suffering, cessation of suffering, and way of cessation of suffering. Buddhism does not believe in teaching the belief in God, but the existence of deities, and this will aid in elevating the Buddha in a divine being. Buddhist believe in Karma or in other words, your actions in your current life will affect your reincarnation.

Over the course of 2500 years Buddhism has experienced some changes. There are currently 3 branches of Buddhism. They are; The Theravada (Doctrine of the Elders), the Mahayana (Great Vehicle), and the Vajrayana (Diamond Vehicle). Within...