Gautama Buddha was born in 563BC in the Lumbini forests in Nepalese Terai. He was the founder of 'Buddhism'. Buddha's childhood name was Siddhartha and he was a child with a contemplative bent of mind. At the age of 29, Siddhartha left his home and all the royal comforts behind in search of peace and truth.
Siddhartha got enlightenment when he was sitting in meditation under a pipal tree in Gaya. Siddhartha now got transformed into 'Buddha' or 'enlightened' and the pipal tree under which he got enlightenment became Bodhi tree or Bodhi Vriksha.
Buddha delivered his first sermon in Sarnath (near Varanasi). Buddha taught that the root cause of mankind's suffering was desire. People could get rid of the torment of desires by following the Eightfold path: right belief, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right memory and right meditation.
Buddha attained Nirvana in Kushinagar (UP) in 483 B.C. After his death, his teachings spread through Asia. Today, the religion numbers 500 million followers, many others in the East and West practice Buddhist teachings to achieve self-awareness.