Life of Shakyamuni Buddha with pictures


Bodhisattva Prabhapala is invited by the Devas in the Tushita Heaven to come down on earth to save all beings 


Queen Mahamaya had a dream of a six-tusked white elephant coming to her and she was then pregnant. 

The Buddha was born at Lumbini Garden. 


Prince Siddhartha was tenderly pampered. 


Prince Siddhartha attends the Ploughing Festival with his father, King Suddhodana. 


In his younger ages,
Prince Siddhartha soon shows his compassion.  One day, his cousin Devadata hit a wild goose with his arrow.  Prince Siddharha takes the arrow out of the goose and prevents Devadata from further killing the goose. 


In his outings through the four gates of the city, prince Siddhartha realizes the true circle of life: birth, old age, illness and death. 


Prince Siddhartha looks at his wife and son before leaving the palace.


At dawn, Prince Siddhartha and the charioteer ride the horse Kanthaka, leave the city of Kapilvastu, cross the Anoma river and start a homeless life. 


Cutting off his hair, shaving off his beard, the Prince instructs Dunpa to return to the palace with his garments, ornaments and precious sword.


Prince Siddhartha dwells in the snow-capped mountain caves to engage in spiritual practice. 


Prince Siddhartha in his six years of continuous practicing all forms of severe austerity. 


Deciding to follow the Middle Path, the Prince abandones ascetic life and accepts a bowl of milk-rice offered by Gamo and Gatopma. 


Temptation from the demons of defilement, attachment, jealousy and doubt. 


Mara, the evil forces, such as: arrogance, hatred, etc., fail to disturb the Prince. 


Prince Siddhartha meditates under the Bodhi tree by the Neranjara River. 


Prince Siddahartha attains Enlightenment on the eighth of December under the Bodhi tree after defeating Mara. 


Turning the Dharma Wheel the first time at the Deer Park, the Buddha expounds the Four Noble Truths to convert the first five ascetic friends. 


In the Bamboo (Venuvana) at Rajagriha, the Buddha gave a sermon to 1250 disciples 

The Buddha exhorts the Dharma to Sariputta, Moggalana, and other chief disciples. 


The Buddha expounds the Dharma to Queen Maha-Yana. 


The Buddha returns to Kapilavathu to visit King Suddhodana and to preach Dharma to his royal relatives. 


The Buddha converts Patacara, an unfortunate woman, to become a Bhiksuni in the Sangha. 

The Buddha advises Singala about the meaning of worshiping six directions: East, West, South, North, Above and Below.


The Buddha converts a heretic, Angulimala, who murdered others for their fingers. 

A mother agonized over the sudden death of her only son, came to Buddha, asking him to help her saving her son.  The Buddha delivered a sermon on impermanence. She was then Enlightened leading a life of happiness and serenity. 


With his great compassion, the Buddha brings to submission the ferociously drunken
elephants released by King Ajatasatti. 


The Buddha attains Parinibbana in the Sala Grove, between the twin Sala trees, in the vicinity of Kusinagara. 

Life of Shakyamuni Buddha with pictures  version two 


The Devās request the Bodhisattva in Tusita Heaven to descend and become a Buddha. 


Queen Mahāmāyā dreams a white elephant enters her side during the conception. 


King Suddhodana and the Brahmin soothsayers examines the newborn Bodhisattva. 


The Seer Kāladevala also called Asita explains that the Bodhisattva will become Buddha. 


The Bodhisattva meditates during his father's plowing festival. 

The Bodhisattva uses his arching skills to win his future wife Yasodharā Rāhulamātā. 



The Bodhisattva sees the 4 signs: An old, sick & dead man and a calm wandering recluse. 

The Bodhisattva observes his dancing girls & realizes the vanity and depravity of luxury. 


He decides to leave his wife and newborn son Rāhula and become a wandering recluse. 


He leaves his palace at night on his horse Kanthaka followed by his driver Channa. 


He crosses the river Anomā, cuts his topknot, throws it up, where Sakka catches it.  


Gotama then strives and starves himself for six years without result. The five other recluses leave him. 


The maiden Sujātā offers the last milk-rice meal on the morning of his Enlightenment. 


The Buddha throws the plate into the river Nerañjarā, where Nāga Mahākāla hears it. 


Gaining the six higher powers he sees the rebirth of beings and recalls all his prior lives. 


He is indifferent to the temptations of Māra's three daughters: Rāga, Tanhā and Aratī. 


Under the Ajapala-nigrodha banyan tree Buddha spent a week cross-legged in Jhāna . 


The Mahābrahmā Sahampati requests the Buddha to open the doors to Deathlessness... 


The Nāga King Mucalinda protects the fasting Buddha in the third week after enlightenment. 


Descending in Sankassa after having spoken the Abhidhamma to the assembled Devās.  


The Buddha explains the true Dhamma to the many beings for their long-term welfare. 


The Buddha compassionately attends to the sick and dying to guide them through it. 


The Buddha visits his home and his former wife Yasodharā in the city of Kapilavatthu.


He meets his father the Sākyan King Suddhodana. 


There he brings his son Rāhula to the Sangha, who ordains him. Rāhula later awakens. 


He shows his half brother Nanda the beauty of the divine nymphs & ordains him as monk. 


The Buddha dispels the manifold doubts of many of the elder Brahmin chiefs. 


The Buddha explains Breathing Meditation Ānāpāna-sati on the full-moon of November. 


He realizes that his long prepared mission has finally been completed and renounces life. 

He deliberately accepts some accidentally poisoned food from Cunda and gets very sick. 


Soon after the Lord Buddha dies and attains Parinibbāna in the small town of Kusinārā. 

Life of Shakyamuni Buddha with pictures version three   


Sumedha, the wise man inherited a vast fortune from his parents who left them upon their deaths. Realizing the unsatisfactoriness he gave away his fortune and became an ascetic in the forest. He soon gained mastery in meditation and was well known for his supernormal powers. 

When ascetic Sumedha knew of the coming of Dipankara Buddha to the city of Rammavati, he took part in preparing the road for the Buddha. He was still repairing it when the Buddha arrived but he was determined to complete it by prostrating himself into the muddy hollow, in fulfillment of his vow to become a Buddha. Beside him was a young lady named Sumitta bearing eight stalks of lotus flowers. She gave the Ascetic five stalks and kept for herself three stalks for her own aspiration. When the Buddha Dipankara saw this, He omnisciently declared the Ascetic Sumedha a future Buddha, while He stated that the aspiring young lady Sumitta would be his constant companion and helpmate. 

The Devas (Gods) imploring the Bodhisatta Santussita Deva (whose real name was Setaketu) in Tusita heaven to be reborn on earth to become a Buddha. He accepted their request after viewing the Five Great Considerations (Panca Maha Vilokana); which are appropriate time, Island-continent, country, clan and life-span of mother.

At Lumbini Park in Nepal, on Vesakha Full Moon Day, the newly born Prince walked seven steps on the lotus flowers and pointing to the North said, “AGGOHAM ASMI LOKASSA” meaning “Chief Am I in this world”. The birth of this baby Prince brought great joy to his royal parents, King Suddhodana and Queen Maha Maya as well as all beings! 

The marriage of Prince Siddhattha and Princess Yasodhara (whose real name was BaddaCancana ) took place at the Golden Palace which was presented by his father, King Suddhodana. It was a luxurious palace full of comforts of life . The celebration lasted many days. 

During his visit to the Royal park, Prince Siddhattha saw the Four Great Signs, namely — an old man, a sick man, a corpse and a serene mendicant. These made the Prince to realize the unsatisfactoriness of life and urged him to ponder deeply about renunciation. 

Mara (the Evil One), with his host tried without success to prevent Prince Siddhattha from his Great Renunciation at midnight . Prince Siddhattha was riding on Kanthaka his fovourite stallion and followed by Channa his loyal charioteer. Mara said that if the prince did not proceed on his renunciation, he would become a Universal Monarch on the seventh day. 

        Prince Siddhattha cut off his hair to renounce the worldly life at the bank of the Anoma River. Ghatikara Maha Brahma presented the Monk’s Eight Requisites to Ascetic Siddhattha, who commanded his charioteer Channa to take his royal chattels back to the palace. 
        His hair was received by Sakka, King of Gods and enshirned in CULAMANI CETI (pagoda) in his celestial abode in TAVATIMSA. Similarly, Ghatikara Maha Brahma bore his princely clothes to his higher celestial abode, Akanittha and enshrined them in the pagoda known as DUSSA CETI.

The ascetic Bodhisatta spent six years practising austerity and meditation with steadfastness as well as earnestness, prior to his attainment. Even though he was reduced to a mere skeleton, he did not give up practising.

The Bodhisatta was sitting on a Golden Throne under a Bodhi tree and being challenged by Mara (the Evil One) riding on the ferocious elephant Girimekhala. Mara with host tried to capture the Golden Throne just before the Bodhisatta’s Enlightenment. 

On Vesakha Full Moon day, Bodhisatta Siddhattha seated under a Bodhi tree at Gaya, attained Supreme Enlightenment. On the first watch of the night he gained knowledge by which He remembered past lives. On the second watch of the night he was able to see into the future including the birth and death of other beings. On the third watch of the night, He destroyed all defilements and became a Fully Enlightened One (Samma-Sambuddha). 

It was in the final week (7th week) after his Enlightenment, when the two merchant brothers Tapussa and Bhallika from Ukkalapa passed by the spot and saw the Buddha. They offered the Buddha their own provision;  then the Buddha gave eight strands of hairs from His head for them to worship as sacred objects of veneration.  The hair relics are now enshrined in the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, Myanmar.

        At the Deer Park at Varanasi, the Buddha met the five ascetics, Kondanna, Vappa, Bhaddiya, Mahanama and Assaji all of whom He had known before .He delivered His first sermon to them. It is called the Dhammacakkapavattana Sutta which sets the wheel of the Dhamma in motion. The ascetic Kondanna who was at His childhood Name-giving Ceremony became the first to see light in the Dhamma and attained Sotapanna, the first stage of Sainthood. 
        Later, all attained Arahantship after hearing the Anatalakkhana Sutta (the Discourse which deals with No-Self) 

The Buddha exhorted His first sixty Arahant disciples to go forth in different directions to preach the Doctrine, using these famous words: – “Go ye, 0 bhikkhus and wander forth for the gain of many, for the welfare of the many, in compassion for the world, for the good, for the gain, for the welfare of the Devas (Gods) and men . Proclaim ye, 0 Bhikkhus! The Doctrine that is glorious and preach ye a life of holiness, perfect and pure!” 

When the Bodhisatta visited Rajagaha, the capital of Magadha, King Bimbisara offered his Kingdom to the Bodhisatta. But He did not accept it because of the worldly pleasures. After listening to the preaching of Buddha, the King attained the first stage of Sainthood (Sotapanna). He then dedicated his Royal park known as Veluvana (Bamboo Grove) to the Buddha and His disciples. 

The Buddha performed the Twin Miracles of emitting fire and water simultaneously from His body, to subdue the pride of his older relatives who had erroneously thought that the Buddha being the younger would have to show respects to them. 

        On the seventh day after his arrival in Kapilavatthu, Princess Yasodhara dressed up Prince Rahula and pointing to the Buddha said, “Behold, son, the great Ascetic of majestic appearance is your father. Go up to him and ask for your inheritance!”
        As advised by his mother, young Rahula came to His presence and asked for his inheritance. Instead, the Buddha told Venerable Sariputta to ordain Prince Rahula , giving him a spiritual inheritance better than the one he asked for.

During a subsequent visit to Rajagaha City, the Buddha went for alms-round in the company of His Chief Disciples and other monks. Along the way King Bimbisara and his royal family paid respects to the Buddha and His disciples.

The Buddha delivering a sermon of peace to two powerful warning armies of Kapilavatthu and Koliya at the opposite banks of the Rohini river before the two countries started fighting for the water supply of the river, for pastoral use. 

        The Order of Nuns (Bhikkhuni Sasana) was founded in the fifth year of the Buddha’s Enlightenment. After the death of King Suddhodana, Maha Pajapati Gotami , who was His former foster mother desirous of joining the Order ,approached the Buddha who was then, residing at Kapilavathu and begged permission for women to be admitted into the Order. After hearing and turning down their pleas, Buddha returned to Vesali for the Rains Retreat . Undaunted by the rebuff, Maha Pajapati Gotami cut off her hair and wearing yellow garments went on foot to Vesali, accompanied by many other Sakyan ladies. They stood outside the porch of the Pinnacled Great Hall in Mahayana where the Buddha was residing. Interceded by Venerable Ananda , the Buddha finally consented to establish the Bhikkhuni Sasana when Maha Pajapati Gotami and other Sakyan ladies agreed to observe the Eight Disciplinary Rules for nuns. Henceforth Maha Pajapati Gotami and other Sakyan ladies were admitted into the Order.
        Later, the Nuns Khema and Uppalavanna were appointed the two Chief female Disciples; as were Sariputta and Moggalana the two Chief Male Disciples.

After losing in lively debate, the haughty hermit Saccaka refused to answer accordingly when the Buddha asked a question. Only when he was threatened to be beaten up by a celestial demon for arrogance, only then did he finally realize his own folly and listened to the Buddha’s preaching meekly. This wholesome action of his would augur well for his future. 

On the seventh year after His Enlightenment, the Buddha preached the Abhidhamma (higher Doctrine) in Tavatimsa Heaven. As a fulfillment of gratitude to his former mother, now a Santussita Deva, the Buddha then delivered a sermon on the Higher Doctrine to thousands of Devas (Gods) and Brahmas (higher celestial beings) who attained the various stages of Noble Sainthood. 

The non Buddhist sectarians grudgingly wanted to ruin the Buddha’s reputation. They told Cinca Manvika , a beautiful girl to falsely accuse the Buddha for her shamed, pregnancy in a big and august assembly. King of Devas (Gods) dispatched some Deities disguised as mice to gnaw through the strings holding a block of wood under her garment. Her plot was exposed when the wood fell on her feet. When the people saw that, they threw stones and chased her away. As she was walking away, the earth splits open and a flame sprang up to envelop and drag her down to Avici (deepest and worst) Hell. 

On the sixteenth year of His Enlightenment, the Buddha tamed the carnivorous Demon King , Alavaka who feasted on human flesh, to give up his habit on devouring at least one human being everyday. After hearing the Buddha’s Teaching, he henceforth gave up his habit, thus sparing the small child offered to him as food on that day. 

There was a young harmless student at Takkasila University called Ahimsa. His jealous fellow students poisoned the mind of their teacher against him. As a result the teacher asked Ahimsa for a garland of one thousand right index fingers as tuition fee. Eager to discharge his obligation, he went into the Jalini forest in Kosala and started to waylay the passing travellers to collect an index finger from the right hand of each victim. The garland was almost completed except for one more single finger. Ahimsa decided to kill even his own mother for the sake of completing the one thousandth finger in the garland. However, Ahimsa was intercepted by the Compassionate Buddha who came to his aid. After listening to His preaching and being convinced, Ahimsa now known as Angulimala (garland of fingers ) joined the Sangha and became a Bhikkhu (monk) . The Angulimala Sutta, a discourse ascribed to this Thera (elder/monk) and connected to this event, is well-known in Buddhist countries and often used by pregnant ladies in travail for easy and safe delivery. 

Once the Buddha and His Disciples went to Lake Anotatta passing by the mansion of Nandopananda the dragon king who was enjoying himself with his retinue. Angry at the apparent trespassing, Nandopananda coiled itself seven times round Mount Meru, covered the summit with its hood and spewing hot poisonous smoke to prevent the Buddha and his disciples from reaching lake Anotatta. Thereupon Maha Moggalana, (the second Chief Disciple) at once transformed himself into a dragon and likewise coiled round the mountain, crushing Nandopananda. Watched by the Buddha and His disciples, Maha Moggalana too began spewing hot poisonous smoke which greatly distressed Nandopananda who soon lost the challenge and upon realization of his folly, sought refuge in the Triple Gem of Buddhism. 

The Buddha taking care of a sick monk, named Tissa who had been neglected by his unthoughtful fellow monks. By so doing, the Buddha wanted to foster mutual care and welfare amongst the Bhikkhus as well as others. 

Baka Brahma, who was bitten by the snake of tenacious heresay (in believing that the Brahma Loka is the best and everlasting world in existence), was duly defeated by the Buddha in a mutual contest to show power.  On hearing the Buddha’s profound expounding of the Dhamma (Buddhist Doctrine), he became enlightened along with many other Brahmas (higher celestial beings). 

When the Buddha was on his way to the city of Rajagaha, Devadatta ordered the release of the fierce elephant, Nalagiri, to harm Him. As the elephant charged towards the Buddha, everyone ran away leaving a mother and her baby on the ground. The Buddha radiated His infinite Compassion to calm and subdued the elephant before it could trample the helpless baby. 

        1. The Buddha at Kusinara laid himself between two Sal trees with his head to the North, determined not to rise again. He then delivered his last admonition, “Behold, 0 Disciples! I exhort you ! Subject to change are all component things! Strive on with Diligence !” before He entered Maha parinibbana (attainment of Final Emancipation). 
        2. Dona , the Brahman divided the Buddha’s relics into eight equal portions and distributed each of them to the Rulers of the eight countries. Then Dona decided that the golden container be kept for himself as an object of respectful veneration. 

Life of Shakyamuni Buddha with pictures version 4, this version has no descriptions, I post descriptions at the end of the pictures 








Life of Buddha    

Divine Conception 
Queen Maya was the wife of Suddhodana, virtuous ruler of the minor kingdom of Kapilivastu in what is now northern Bengal. One night she had a strange dream: a Bodhisattva descended from heaven, riding on a white
elephant, the symbol of divine kingship. The white elephant touched Maya's side with his trunk, and she became pregnant with the spirit of the Buddha. 

Miraculous Birth 
The Buddha's birth was similarly miraculous. On the eighth day of the fourth lunar month, Queen Maya was walking in the Lumbini Garden in Suddhodana's palace grounds, south of the Himalayas. As she stood under
a sala (ashoka) tree and raised her right arm to pick a blossom, the infant Buddha sprang from her side without causing his mother pain or bloodshed.  He immediately took seven steps towards the north, and announced in a loud voice that this was his final incarnation.

The Young Prince 
The young prince Gautama Siddhartha was born into the ancient Sakya clan, whose symbol was the lion; hence he is often known as "Sakyamuni" (the Sage of the Sakya), or as "Sakyasimha" (the Lion of the Sakya). His father
belonged to the warrior caste. Soon after the young prince's birth, a wise sage named Asita predicted that the child would grow up to be a holy man, rather than following his father as ruler. Suddhodana tried to prevent this
from happening by making sure that the prince lived a sequestered life of ease and luxury in the royal palace, ignorant of the world outside.  When he was sixteen, he was given the beautiful princess Yasodhara as his
wife, and they had a son, named Rahula. 

The Four Encounters 
In the spring of his twenty-ninth year, Prince Gautama Siddhartha grew troubled in spirit, and decided to leave the sheltered palace enclosure to view the flowers in bloom; instead, he came face to face with the world's pain and misery. Departing through the eastern gate on the first day, Sakyamuni was troubled by the sight of an old, decrepit man. On the second day, passing out through the southern gate, he came upon a man suffering from a debilitating illness. On the third day, leaving by the western gate, he beheld a corpse surrounded by weeping mourners. Finally, travelling towards the north on the fourth day, he met a mendicant monk, and resolved to follow
this holy man's example. 

The Great Renunciation and Departure from his Father's Palace
Now fully aware of the sorrow that pervaded the world outside the sheltered life of the palace, Sakyamuni resolved to abandon his opulent life as a prince, vowing instead to seek through fasting and meditation a way to relieve the sufferings of humankind. Fearing that his father would try to prevent his departure, he decided to leave secretly at night. The king's guards fell into a deep sleep, and four nature spirits (yakshas) lifted the Prince's horse Kanthaka into the air, so that his hooves would make no noise on the cobblestoned pavement.

Sakyamuni's Descent from the Mountain 
As an ascetic in the Himalayan Mountains, the former prince lived an austere life of self-denial -- fasting, subjecting his body to strict discipline, meditating in the lotus position in all weather. Yet after six years, enlightenment still eluded him. He came down from the mountains, bathed, and sat beneath a pipal tree at Gaya, vowing not to move from that spot until he attained full enlightenment. 

The Assault of Mara's Host 
As Sakyamuni meditated beneath the tree, a light began to shine from his forehead over all the earth. Mara, the Evil One, shuddered: he knew that his power to mislead humankind was threatened. Deciding to confront his opponent directly, Mara sent a host of demons to destroy him. Some, Mara's daughters, appeared as beautiful women, bent on distracting or seducing Sakyamuni. Others assumed the forms of fierce animals. But their roars, threats and temptations failed to move the meditating Sakyamuni, and their weapons melted away into lotus blossoms.

Siddhartha becomes the Enlightened One 
Finally, at age 35, on the night of a full moon, Sakyamuni attained enlightenment.  (From this time forward, the pipal tree under which he sat would be known as the Bodhi tree, or tree of enlightenment.) As he was alone with no one to witness this momentous event, he called the Earth itself to be his witness by touching the ground with his right hand in a gesture known as the Bhumisparsa mudra.

The Buddha's First Sermon 
The Enlightened One gave his first public sermon in the Deer Park at Sarnath, near Benares, setting in motion the wheel of the dharma (or spiritual law) as he expounded the doctrine of the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path. This first sermon is represented by the dharmachakra mudra, a two-handed gesture symbolizing the setting in motion of a wheel. This mudra is also used to show the Buddha in his role as a teacher. 

Death of the Buddha 
At the age of 80, after 45 years of teaching, the Buddha entered into a deep trance and died peacefully in the Sala Grove in Kushinagara. This event, often called the (Maha)parinirvana, is depicted with the Buddha reclining gently on his right side, often surrounded by sorrowing attendants and disciples. Sometimes his body appears already shrouded with muslin, as his follower Ananda prepares for his master's funeral. 

The Buddha's coffin proved impervious to ordinary fire, but a divine flame came from within; it burned for seven days and reduced Buddha's earthly remains to ashes. These remains, or sharira, were divided into into eight parts, and sent throughout the world. The recipients reverently enshrined these holy relics in special mounded shrines called stupas, where they became the subject of worshipful reverence, often serving as the focal points of Buddhist monasteries.