An image of the Buddha is carved into a banyan tree at Wat Mahathat in Thailand. (photo: McKay Savage/Flickr, cc by 2.0)
The name Buddha means “awakened one.” This is the story of how a young man became the Buddha. As with all ancient tales, we can’t know what is to be taken literally and what is to be taken metaphorically. It doesn’t matter to me. I’m inspired by his story either way.
A monk celebrates Vesak Day, the Buddha’s birthday, at the Borobudur Temple in Indonesia. (photo: Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images)
Today is the birthday of the Buddha, born as Prince Siddhārtha Gautama in Lumbini, 150 miles from Kathmandu, Nepal. Devotees celebrate three stages of his life on this day: his birth, enlightenment after meditating under the Bodhi tree, and his passing.
Unable to speak, Roger Ebert's new life hints at spiritual transformation, and the bearing of a "poet's heart."
Mishra continues his critique of the ideologies of progress and globalization, refreamed for the current global economic situation.