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The Hero's Journey: Buddha
Transcript of The Hero's Journey: Buddha
The Hero's Journey: Buddha
When Siddhartha leaves the palace and encounters the aged man, the sick man, and the corpse. He becomes unhappy when he finds about sufferance.
Call to Adventure
Refusal of the Call
At first Siddhartha gets scared and goes back to the palace to meditate about these issues, hoping to get his mind off them.
Answering the Call
He stops feeling pleasure and happiness at the palace, so decides to leave and seek freedom of suffering.
He saw a passing monk and was inspired by him, also he had 6 main disciples that he eventually left. However, he had hundreds of followers who accompanied him throughout his journeys.
Crossing the Threshold
Siddhartha leaves the familiar world when he abandons the palace and begins the life of a homeless monk.
Summary of Buddha's story
It begins with Queen Maya dreaming that an elephant enters her womb, and the next morning she awakes pregnant. With the great news the King asks his advisers the future for his child and they tell him his son is going to grow as a happy prince, but if he leaves the palace he would become a monk. In order to prevent that, the King created a paradise for Siddhartha (his original name) inside the palace and never allowed him to go out. However, after begging, Siddhartha took a trip to town were he encountered an aged man, a sick man, and a corpse. This three sights provoked the desire in him to find freedom from fear of sufferance and death, and eventually led him into leaving the palace and becoming a monk. After trying many techniques, learning the teachings, and meditating, Siddhartha reached enlightenment becoming the Buddha. Buddha focused his life in traveling and teaching others the principles of the Dharma. He devoted his life to helping others reach enlightenment, and finally at the age of 80 he laid down to meditate and died; entering Nirvana.
Road of Trials
1. Asceticism: he was starving himself in order to achieve enlightenment. (it didn't work)
2. Exploring himself: he realized the only way he could succeed was to find the answer in himself and meditate.
3. Mara: He was the god of human passions. He tried tempting Buddha with his daughter but he failed.
Meeting with the Goddess
Mara's most beautiful daughter tried seducing Buddha so he wouldn't reach enlightenment.
Atonement with the Father
When the King learned that his son was Buddha he sent for him to come to the palace. The Buddha went with his disciples and taught the Dharma to his father, wife, and now seven year old son.
Buddha is worshipped by his disciples and hundreds of followers. He was viewed as an example and the ultimate goal.
After learning the teachings and meditating, he reaches enlightenment; which is what he was looking for all along.
The Magic Flight
Towards the end, Buddhas cousin Devadatta becomes jealous of him, and chases him trying to kill him. He attempted 2 times, the first one throwing a rock at him, and the second one with a wild elephant. He failed both.
Rescue from Without
Buddha becomes very ill in one of his journeys, he believes his time is coming to an end; so he meditates and finds out hes dying in 3 months.
Crossing the Return Threshold
He arrives to the forest where his journey began & lays down to meditate. He taught his last sermon there, and at the end he closed his eyes and entered Nirvana.
Master of Two Worlds?
Yes, he conquers both the spiritual world by achieving Nirvana, and in the physical world he is able to spread the teachings & help others.
Freedom to Live?
Yes, Buddha's goal was to find freedom of fear towards sufferment and death & he accomplishes it.
Hero Related to its Culture
The Indian culture is one of the oldest cultures and civilizations in the whole world. It is known for its very firm values, and love and respect feelings towards nature. Indian culture also includes the caste sytem, which is strictly enforced even today. At the top of the caste system go the Brahman, which are priests and scholars. This is very important because Buddha starts as a simple monk but then escalates and becomes a Brahman, and that makes him extremely important and powerful because people dont normally change social positions. However, in Indian culture people try to be as kind as possible. They almost never refuse a request, but instead do all they can to help their neighbors and friends, and this is a very strong concept in the story of Buddha. Buddha dedicates his life to help others reach freedom of sufferment, he also respects nature and doesnt harm it, which is why most Indians are vegetarian. The life of Buddha is an example for how Indian people try to live their life, simple, with a purpose, and not just for yourself. Because if you do good things in earth for those that surround you and you do not harm anyone or anything, not only will you get satisfaction but when you die youll achieve Nirvana.
Photocopy of book excerpt.