Is Buddha A Vishnu Avatar?
There is a lot of debate and controversy over who was Vishnu’s 9th avatar. Some oppose the idea that it was Buddha, as he himself had stated he was not god or an incarnation of god.
Also some scholars say that as he effectively started his own religious movement, whether or not deliberately, he went against dharma and the vedas and could not be an avatar of Vishnu.
It has been a heated topic for generations, and there is no definitive answer. However, Buddha being Vishnu’s ninth avatar remains the most popular and commonly accepted belief.
The Life Story Of Buddha
Gautama Buddha is thought to have lived some time between 450 BCE and 400 BCE, somewhere in North East India or present day Nepal. He is believed to have been born in Lumbini, in present day Nepal.
Gautama Buddha’s Childhood
He was born as Prince Siddhartha, to King Suddhodana, of a small prosperous kingdom called Kapilavastu. Gautama was the family name, which is why in future he would come to be known as Gautama Buddha.
Shortly after he was born, the great sage of the time, Sage Asita, came to see the king and queen and welcome the new baby. He prophesised that the child would be a great saint, rather than a king. This trouble Suddhodana a lot.
As Siddhartha was growing up, he would prefer the company of animals and nature to his friends. He found his friends cruel and unkind, especially to animals.
One well known example was when he found a dove that had been shot by an arrow, in the palace grounds. He removed the arrow and tended to the bird. A short while later, his cousin Devadatta appeared and claimed the bird as his own, as he had shot it.
The prince said that as he had removed the arrow and saved the bird’s life, he had in effect given it life and the bird should belong to him.