The founder of Buddhism in this world was Buddha Shakyamuni who lived and gave teachings in Nepal and India some two and a half thousand years ago. Since then millions of people around the world have followed the spiritual path he revealed.
The Buddhist way of life of peace, loving-kindness and wisdom can be just as relevant today as it was in ancient Nepal.
Buddha taught methods for gradually overcoming our negative minds such as anger, jealousy and ignorance, and developing our positive minds such as love, compassion, and wisdom. Through this, we can come to experience lasting peace and happiness.
These methods can work for anyone, in any country, in any age. Once we have gained experience of them for ourselves we can pass them on to others so they too can enjoy the same benefits.
Meditation is at the heart of the Buddhist way of life. It is essentially a method for understanding and working in our own mind. We first learn to identify our different negative mental states known as ‘delusions’, and learn how to develop peaceful and positive mental states or ‘virtuous minds’.
Then in meditation, we overcome our delusions by becoming familiar with virtuous minds. Out of meditation, we try to maintain the virtuous minds we have developed and use our wisdom to solve the problems of daily life.
As our mind becomes more positive our actions become more constructive, and our experience of life becomes more satisfying and beneficial to others.
Anyone can learn basic meditation techniques and experience great benefits, but to progress beyond basic meditation requires faith in the Three Jewels – Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha. Usually, people find this develops naturally as they experience the benefits of their meditation practice.