Many people believed in reincarnation but those
pepole were getting tired of it. So a young Indian prince named Siddhartha Gautama
Buddha had an idea. He thought that you could get off the wheel of reincarnation if you were good and pure enough. He refused
to be a prince anymore, and tried to spend his life being good and pure so he could get off the wheel. Gautama Buddha had
many followers during his lifetime, and after he died he had even more.
In the 300’s
BC, one of the great Mauryan kings, Asoka, became a Buddhist, which helped Buddhism to succeed.
At first, most Buddhists were in India. But soon Buddhism spread to China
and other parts of East Asia. By the 600’s AD most of the Buddhists in India had gone back
to being Hindus again. They still remembered Buddha, but as one of many Hindu gods. In China, on the other hand, Buddhism
got stronger and stronger. Soon most of the Buddhists were in China and not India.