Buddha (563?- 483?BC), Indian philosopher and the founder of Buddhism, born in Kapilavastu, India, just inside present-day Nepal. His name Gautama Buddha is a combination of the family name Gautama and the appellation Buddha, meaning “Enlightened One.” One day in 533, according to tradition, he encountered an aged man, a sick man, and a corpse, and he suddenly realized that suffering is the common lot of humankind. He then came upon a mendicant monk, calm and serene, whereupon he determined to adopt his way of life and forsake family, wealth, and power in the quest for truth. Accompanied by disciples, Buddha traveled through the valley of the Ganges River, teaching his doctrines, gathering followers, and establishing monastic communities that admitted anyone regardless of caste. Buddha’s teachings have influenced the lives of millions of people for nearly 2500 years.