In East Asian Buddhism the Buddha of the Lotus Sutra is regarded as the eternal Buddha. It is a popular notion, which may have contributed to the tathagatagarbha doctrine, although the notion of an eternal Buddha is not explicitly stated in the Lotus Sutra.
Gautama Buddha was an ascetic and spiritual teacher of South Asia who lived during the latter half of the first millennium BCE. He was the founder of Buddhism and is revered by Buddhists as an Enlightened being whose teachings sought a path to freedom from ignorance, craving, rebirth and suffering.
Born in Lumbini in the Newar clan of the Shakya, he spent the majority of his adult life in modern day Nepal and India, .