After a stupendous struggle of six strenuous years, in his 35th
year the ascetic Gautama, unaided and unguided by any supernatural
agency, and solely relying on his own efforts and wisdom eradicated all
defilements, ended the process of grasping and , realising things as
they truly are by his won intuitive knowledge, became a Buddha - an
Enlightened or awakened one. He was not a Buddha, but become a Buddha by
his own efforts.
took Gautama four weeks of meditation to
obtain enlightenment. He reached final enlightenment in four stages.
the first stage he called forth reason and investigation. His seclusion
helped him to attain it easily.
In the second stage he added concentration.
In the third stage he brought to his aid
equanimity and mindfulness.
In the fourth and final stage he added purity to equanimity and
equanimity to mindfulness.
Thus with mind concentrated, purified, spotless, with defilement gone,
supple, dexterous, firm, impassionate, not forgetting what he is after,
Gautama concentrated himself on the
problem of finding an answer to the question which had troubled him. On
the night of the last day of the fourth week light dawned upon him.
Gautama realised that there were two problems. The first problem was
that there was suffering in the world and the second problem was how to
remove this suffering and make mankind happy. So in the end, after
meditation for four weeks darkness was dispelled, light arose, ignorance
was dispelled and knowledge arose. He saw a new way.