The BuddhaThis documentary for PBS by award-winning filmmaker David Grubin and narrated by Richard Gere, tells the story of the Buddha’s life, a journey especially relevant to our own bewildering times of violent change and spiritual confusion.

It features the work of some of the world’s greatest artists and sculptors, who across two millennia, have depicted the Buddha’s life in art rich in beauty and complexity.

Hear insights into the ancient narrative by contemporary Buddhists, including Pulitzer Prize winning poet W.S. Merwin and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

Join the conversation and learn more about meditation, the history of Buddhism, and how to incorporate the Buddha’s teachings on compassion and mindfulness into daily life.

Two-thousand-five-hundred years ago in northern India, Prince Siddhartha left his palace where he had spent twenty-nine years indulging in pleasures.

He was determined to comprehend the nature of human suffering. After a grueling spiritual quest that lasted six years, he at last attained enlightenment meditating under a fig tree.

He became the Buddha, the “awakened one,” and devoted the rest of his life to teaching the way to enlightenment that he himself had found, giving birth to one of the world’s great religions.

Watch the full documentary now (playlist)