No man has had a greater influence on the spiritual development of his people than Siddartha Gautama. Born in India in the sixth century BC into a nation hungry for spiritual experience, he developed a religious and moral teaching that, to this day, brings comfort and peace to all who practice it.
Having immersed himself in the asceticism and self-deprivation prevalent among religious teachers, he saw that spiritual emancipation could be achieved only through the mind. His eightfold path for right living is a means to liberation from suffering and forms the basis of Buddhist humanism.
This comprehensive biography examines the social, religious and political conditions that gave rise to Buddhism as we now know it. It explores the spiritual traditions from which the Buddha broke away and places his teachings and influence in a throughly researched historical context.