In the 6th century B.C, a Sakya prince from Kapilavastu, renounced all worldly attachments, shattered all barricades of desire, and dedicated his entire life in search for an answer to the grotesque realities of pain, suffering and sorrow haunting mankind since time immemorial. He walked through dense jungles, barren lands, poor villages, practised austerities and mortifications and finally set on meditation for attaining Enlightenment by the banks of the Falgu river near the city of Gaya, in Bihar. Beneath a Peepul tree here, this man attained the supreme and perfect insight and gave the world a new way of life, a new vision- his own Dhamma. The prince was called Siddhartha Gautama, who later became the Buddha.
The Mahabodhi Temple at Bodh Gaya is one of the most important Buddhist temples in the world as it marks the place where the Buddha attained his Enlightenment beneath a Peepul tree. Hundreds of monks from different parts of the world reside in the monasteries in the small town of Bodh Gaya. Defined by their austerities, driven by their desire to attain Nirvana, Buddhist monks at Bodh Gaya lead a life that is spiritual, simple and pure. Clad in red or yellow robes, they prostrate, read scriptures, and meditate, and seek the supreme insight.