Social Studies for 8th EGB
Teacher: Mauricio Torres
We have already learned that Siddharta
Gautama, was a young man who sought
out for answers as to why people suffer. He
embarked on a journey of self discovery
and after meditation and fasting, he finally
arrived to some conclusions.
His ideas, are the basis for one of the
world’s most followed “religions”.
As he traveled, Buddha gained many
followers, mostly among middle class
Indians. The were the first believers in
Buddhism, a religion based on the
teachings of Buddha.
“Let man overcome anger by love”
The Buddha had been raised Hindu, and most of his teachings are
based on Hinduism. He believed people should act morally and treat
At the heart of Buddha’s teachings were four guiding principles:
The Four Noble
1. Suffering and unhappiness are a part of human
life, no one can escape sorrow.
The Four Noble Truths
Suffering is inevitable, so its worthless to worry about our mishappenings
2. Suffering comes from our desires for pleasure
and material goods.
People cause their own misery because they want things they cannot
3. People can overcome desire and ignorance.
By doing this, they reach nirvana (a state of perfect peace), freeing
the soul from suffering and from need of further reincarnation.
4. People can overcome ignorance and desire by
following an Eightfold Path.
This path will lead to wisdom, enlightenment and salvation.
Eightfold Path (page 139)
The Buddha believed that this path was a middle way between
human desires and denying oneself any pleasures. He believed
people should overcome their desire for material goods. They should
however be reasonable and not starve their bodies or cause any
Eightfold Path (page 139)
Believe in the nature of existence as suffering and the Four
Incline towards good and kindness
Avoid lies and gossip
Don’t steal or harm others
Reject work that hurts others
Prevent evil and do good
Control your feelings and thoughts
Practice proper meditation
Did Buddha’s teachings
ideas or did they support them?
It did both!
Hindu ideas challenged by Buddhism
Buddha’s teaching challenged traditional
Hindu teachings, because he rejected
many ideas in the Vedas such as animal
sacrifice. He told his followers they should
not follow these texts!
He believed Brahmins or their rituals were
necessary for their enlightenment, but
rather each individual’s own
He taught that people who failed to reach
nirvana were the ones who’d fail to
reincarnate, and would do so until they
The Buddha was opposed to the caste
system. He believed no one should be
confined to a certain place or role in
society, and rather those who followed the
Eightfold path properly would reach
Support from the Masses
• His opposition to the caste system won him a
vast support from the masses.
• Many sudras and untouchables liked hearing
that their low social rank would not be a
barrier to enlightenment.
– Unlike Hinduism, Buddhism made them feel that
they had the power to change their lives!
• Who was Siddharta Gautama?
• Many of the Buddha’s teachings
reflect the ideas of which other world
• What did Siddharta endure before
• What are the Four Noble truths?
• What advantage do you think the
Buddha saw in following the “middle
• How do you think people reacted to
the Buddha’s telling them they did not
have to accept the Brahmin’s
“Holding on to anger
is like drinking poison
and expecting the
other person to die”.
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