Gautama Buddha was born in Nepal. His family name is Siddhārtha. Gautama was the person who began the religion of Buddhism. He lived from about 563 BC to about 483 BC. He is also called Sakyamuni or Tathāgat.
His early years[change | change source]
Siddhārtha Gautama (Sidaaha) was born in the kingdom of Kapilvastu in Nepal. At present this birth place of Buddha is called Lumbini, in Nepal. At that time, a clan called the Shakya's ruled Kapilvastu. His father was a king named Suddodana Tharu, and his mother was Maya Devi. Siddhārtha lived in luxury; his father kept trouble and hard work far from him. A seer predicted that if Siddhārth stayed inside his palace his whole life, then he would become a great king. However, if he left the palace, then he would become a great religious leader. The king did not want his son to become a religious leader. He kept Siddhartha in the palace for his whole childhood.
When he was older, his father found a woman for Siddhārtha to marry at the age of 16. He married the woman named Yashodhara, and they had a son, Rahul. Although Gautama had everything he could want, he still was not happy. He wanted to learn the meaning of his existence.
It is said that he got out of the castle against his father's orders. He saw the "Four Passing Sights": an old crippled man, a sick man, a dead man, and a holy man with no home. But in real he became member of shakya sangh in age of 20. After eight years Shakya and Koli dispute happened. Which was about the use of water of river Rohini. Some people of both the sides got injured. After it in a meeting of shakya sangh they decided to fight a war against Kolis to teach them lesson. Siddhartha opposed the proposal and said, "war is not a solution of any problem, We can form a council of some people of both sides and that council can solve the issues." Almost all the members rejected his opinion. Next day head of the sangh said, " we are going to recruit new soldiers for the war and it is essential for a man who is above 20 and below 50 years." Again Siddhartha opposed the proposal. Head of the sangh made him recall his oth but Siddharth said, "he will not fight." Sangh asked him to choose (1) fight for the sangh against kolis (2) death sentence or he will leave the country (3) Social boycott of his family. Siddhartha said "I am ready for death." Head of the sangh said, "this step can be harmful because Kosala king will not allow it." If it is your problem then I may become a monk and then I can leave this country, Kosala king cant do anything in it, said Siddhartha. Head of the sangh thought it was a good idea. After you leave we will start a war so that king will not be able to findout any relation between you and war, head of the sangh said. Next day Siddhartha left his family, his land and everything. It was 29th year of his birth. 
Seeking answers[change | change source]
At that time, holy men were usually ascetics. They hurt their bodies in order to help their spiritual beings. They do not do things they like so they can defeat their desires. The most ascetic kinds of holy men were called Jains. They practiced self-denial and made themselves suffer very much. They believed this would free the ātman (soul) from pain and sadness. Siddhārth did these things well. Eventually he was better than his teachers. He still found no answer, and he left his teachers, some friends and he went even farther. He ate only six grains of rice a day. He tried holding his breath. He became just skin and bones, and he nearly died. Still, he had no answer.
Siddhārth started to think again about this path. He thought there might be a better way than hurting himself. He found a fig tree (now called the Bodhi tree) and started to meditate. He told himself that he would not get up until he had found enlightenment. He meditated under the tree for 49 days. His mind is said to have become pure, and then, six years after he began his path, he said he found Enlightenment, and became the Buddha.
The life as a Buddha[change | change source]
When the Buddha became enlightened, he knew the answer to suffering, and he knew how to defeat suffering. This answer was called the Four Noble Truths. He was not sure if he should teach his new ideas or not. He asked himself if the world was ready for such a deep teaching. But in the end, he decided to travel to a town called Sarnath to teach the people his new way. He taught about the Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eightfold Path. The people listened to him.
When he taught, he did not pretend to be a god. He said he was just a man who had found the meaning of life (enlightenment), and that any person can also find the meaning of life. For the rest of his life, he walked all over Southern Nepal and parts of India to teach people what he believed. He started a Sangha, which is a group of Buddhist monks and nuns. Many people became enlightened because of him. At the age of 80, Gautama Buddha died.
The life teachings[change | change source]
The teachings of the Buddha are known as Buddhism. Buddhism is mostly about ending the feeling of pain that all people feel inside. Gautama Buddha taught that pain is a part of all life. He taught that pain is because of desire. And he showed that there is a way to end desire and end pain by doing good things, not doing bad things, and training one's mind. This is done to end pain and gain enlightenment.
Buddhism teaches non-harm and balance – not going too far one way or the other. The Buddha taught people to meditate, or think deeply, while sitting in the lotus position. Some Buddhists chant and meditate while walking. Buddhists sometimes do these things to understand the human heart and mind. Sometimes they do these things to understand the way the world works. Sometimes they do these things to find peace.
The Buddha would not say if gods exist or not. He taught that people should not look to gods to save them or bring them enlightenment. The gods may have power over world events and they might help people, or they might not. But Buddha believed that it is up to each person to become enlightened.
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Fleeing the murderous Pol Pot regime, Cambodian refugees arrive in America as at once the victims and the heroes of America's misadventures in Southeast Asia; and their encounters with American citizenship are contradictory as well. Service providers, bureaucrats, and employers exhort them to be self-reliant, individualistic, and free, even as the system and the culture constrain them within terms of ethnicity, race, and class. Buddha Is Hiding tells the story of Cambodian Americans experiencing American citizenship from the bottom-up. Based on extensive fieldwork in Oakland and San Francisco, the study puts a human face on how American institutions—of health, welfare, law, police, church, and industry—affect minority citizens as they negotiate American culture and re-interpret the American dream.
In her earlier book, Flexible Citizenship, anthropologist Aihwa Ong wrote of elite Asians shuttling across the Pacific. This parallel study tells the very different story of "the other Asians" whose route takes them from refugee camps to California's inner-city and high-tech enclaves. In Buddha Is Hiding we see these refugees becoming new citizen-subjects through a dual process of being-made and self-making, balancing religious salvation and entrepreneurial values as they endure and undermine, absorb and deflect conflicting lessons about welfare, work, medicine, gender, parenting, and mass culture. Trying to hold on to the values of family and home culture, Cambodian Americans nonetheless often feel that "Buddha is hiding." Tracing the entangled paths of poor and rich Asians in the American nation, Ong raises new questions about the form and meaning of citizenship in an era of globalization.
List of Illustrations
Introduction: Government and Citizenship
PART I. IN POL POT TIME
1. Land of No More Hope
2. A Hilton in the Border Zone
PART II. GOVERNING THROUGH FREEDOM
3. The Refugee as an Ethical Figure
4. Refugee Medicine: Attracting and Deflecting the Gaze
5. Keeping the House from Burning Down
6. Refugee Love as Feminist Compassion
7. Rescuing the Children
PART III. CHURCH AND MARKETPLACE
8. The Ambivalence of Salvation
9. Guns, Gangs, and Doughnut Kings
PART IV. RECONFIGURATIONS OF CITIZENSHIP
10. Asian Immigrants as the New Westerners?
Afterword: Assemblages of Human Needs
Aihwa Ong is Professor of Anthropology and of South and Southeast Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. She is the author of Flexible Citizenship: The Cultural Logics of Transnationalism (1999) and Spirits of Resistance and Capitalist Discipline: Factory Women in Malaysia (1987), and the editor of Ungrounded Empires: The Cultural Politics of Modern Chinese Transnationalism (1997) and Bewitching Women, Pious Men: Gender and Labor Politics in Southeast Asia (California, 1995).
“A challenging and creative book that contributes significantly to our broader understaning of immigration, refugees, welfare and race in a globalized context. Original and stimulating.”—Steven J. Gold Ethnic And Racial Studies
“A penetrating, forthright and insightful account of what Cambodians . . . coped with . . . in Southeast Asia and later in the United States.”—Don Watanabe Pacific Reader"In this tour-de-force ethnography, acclaimed anthropologist Aihwa Ong trains her awesome ethnographic and theoretic talents on the brutal forces reconfiguring citizenship in a globalized world of war refugees, economic immigrants, and technicians of the modern soul. A work of breathtaking brilliance, beauty, perception and compassion that should bestir Buddha and the rest of us to action."—Judith Stacey, author of Brave New Families
"In this impressive and substantial work, Ong brings together rich ethnographies of Southeast Asia immigrants with a conceptually deft and poignant analysis of the human technologies of citizen-making. At stake is no less than a radical rethinking of the conditions of life, the meaning of the human, and a conception of power beyond the confines of traditional sovereignty."—Judith Butler, author of The Psychic Life of Power: Theories of Subjection
"Ong's vivid ethnography, filtered through her astute theoretical gaze, transforms and enlarges our understandings of immigration and citizenship in an increasingly multicultural nation. Ong closely follows the everyday lives of Cambodian refugees in California, as they struggle to make sense of, selectively embrace, and talk back to American demands for personal autonomy, narcissism, greed, and materialism, which fly in the face of Cambodian values of compassion, community, and reciprocity. Like her subjects' lives, this book is a marvelous and remarkable achievement."—Nancy Scheper-Hughes, author of Death without Weeping
Leeds Prize Honor Book in Urban Anthropology, Society for Urban, National, and Transnational/Global Anthropology