Unlike many religions, Buddhism has no single central text that is universally referred to by all traditions.
Some Buddhist monks in Japan used to practice self-mummification by adhering to a special diet, then sealing themselves alive into burial chambers.
Many people think that Buddha is a person, but that’s a misinterpretation. Anyone can be a Buddha as it’s just a name for someone who has reached Nirvana, the state of Enlightenment.
The three major branches of Buddhism are Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana.
Buddhist Monks, Vietnam
It’s written in the Pali Vinaya-Pitaka that hair should be shaved when it reaches the length of two finger-widths or every two months as it’s a symbolic gesture that shows that the monk is ready to commit and leave the past behind – it’s also a way of discouraging vanity.
Buddhism teaches that life is full of suffering and that suffering is inevitable. However, it’s said that by following the noble eightfold path it will minimize the suffering until you reach Nirvana.
The wheel of Dhamma represents the noble eightfold path which consists of the following elements: ‘Right View’, ‘Right Thinking’, ‘Right Speech’, ‘Right Action’, ‘Right Livelihood’, ‘Right Diligence’, ‘Right Mindfulness’ and ‘Right Concentration’.
Each individual is responsible for keeping good karma and working their way to attain Enlightenment.
Buddha in Nanzoin Temple in Fukuoka.
Meditation is a big part of the teaching and it is practised several times daily.
Buddhists believe in Karma – it’s the belief that every act has a consequence later on in life. It’s not certain when, but every genuinely good intention will get good karma and every evil act will get bad karma. It’s the force that drives the cycle of suffering and rebirth for each being.
Do you know any fun, interesting or strange facts about Buddhism that we’ve not mentioned? Share them here in the comments section below!