Buddha Codes in
Ecclesiastes and Proverbs


In our continuing research on Buddha in the Bible Codes, we were prompted by Buddha's proverbs, which remind us of Solomon's writings, to look for Buddha in Ecclesiastes 1-7, 11, and Proverbs 1-29.

We examined the five shortest skips of two spellings of Buddha in each book. In addition, since there were four extended ELSs out of the five shortest findings for the first spelling found in Ecclesiastes, we looked at the next five as well. This resulted in a remarkable 70% success rate in finding extended ELSs among the shortest skips (see Buddha E1). In total, 56% of all the shortest skips resulted in extended ELSs.

Nathan Jacobi, Ph.D., parsed and translated the findings.

Buddha Codes in Ecclesiastes

E.1a. The U.N. is Buddha's target.

The U.N. would be a natural target for Buddha, as the following quote from Buddhanet.net implies.
    Like Christianity and Islam, Buddhism is a missionary religion in that it has always believed that the truth it teaches should be made known to as many people as possible. After the Buddha made and trained his first disciples he gave them this commission: "Go ye forth for the good of the many, for the welfare of the many, out of compassion for the world. . . ."

This code is in Ecclesiastes 3:19-20.

E.1b. Why do Buddha and suffering exist? Let me bear them.

Suffering is a major topic in Buddhism. In fact, one of the primary teachings of Buddhism is the Four Noble Truths, which are: (1) Life as we know it ultimately is or leads to suffering/uneasiness in one way or another. (2) Suffering is caused by craving or attachments to worldly pleasures of all kinds. This is often expressed as a deluded clinging to a certain sense of existence, to selfhood, or to the things or phenomena that we consider the cause of happiness or unhappiness. (3) Suffering ends when craving ends, when one is freed from desire. This is achieved by eliminating all delusion, thereby reaching a liberated state of Enlightenment; (4) Reaching this liberated state is achieved by following the path laid out by the Buddha. (Wikipedia.org)

Much of Solomon's writing in Ecclesiastes is devoted to suffering. After bemoaning the meaninglessness of life, Solomon writes about the pain and grief (i.e., suffering):
    What does a man get for all the toil and anxious striving with which he labors under the sun? All his days his work is pain and grief; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is meaningless. —Ecclesiastes 2:22-23 (NIV)

Solomon reigned from 971-931 B.C., and Buddha lived from 563 to 483 B.C.. Since Solomon lived approximately 400 years before Buddha, the possibility of Solomon's teachings reaching Buddha in India are not without possibility.

This code is in Ecclesiastes 1:16-18.

E.1d. Indeed the Buddha is godless.

Buddha never claimed to be god, or to believe in god. For more information, see The Buddha on God, by Jayaram V., on HinduWebsite.com

This code is in Ecclesiastes 6:3-7:7.

E.1e. They will strike Buddha, my treasure.

This code sounds like an attack on Buddha. Buddha's teachings abhor violence, but at times wars have been waged by Buddhist countries. For more information, see Buddhism and Violence, by Bernard Faure, Professor of Religious Studies at Stanford University, on Sangam.org.

This code is in Ecclesiastes 1:9-2:1.

The next two codes both contain the word oblivion:

E.1f. Buddha has fought the grace of oblivion
which will be vindicated.

E.1h. Buddha became obsolete, as if lost—
I accompanied his oblivion.

Oblivion is the state of being forgotten; the state of being unaware or unconscious of something.1 These two codes appear to be from opposite points of view. Buddha has fought the grace of oblivion which will be vindicated seems to be saying that Buddha fights against oblivion with right mindfulness, but Buddha became obsolete, as if lost—I accompanied his oblivion seems to be saying the opposite. That Buddha is lost and obsolete and following him would lead a person into oblivion, or a different interpretation could be that it is a statement by one of Buddha's disciples who was with him when he died. It could be an assertion by this disciple that he too would reach oblivion or nirvana.

E.1f is in Ecclesiastes 5:10-7:14.

E.1h is in Ecclesiastes 2:1-3:19.

E1.j. Where in me is there an honest opening
that Buddha confirmed with me?

Honest opening could be referring to one of Buddha's followers being receptive to one of Buddha's harder teachings.

This code is in Ecclesiastes 2:7-5:11.

E.2b. I have a hundred (and) horror of complexity,
Buddha is made up and finished.

A horror of complexity might imply a horror of extremes. One teaching of Buddhism is The Middle Way: "the practice of non-extremism: a path of moderation away from the extremes of self-indulgence and self-mortification." Middle Way, Wikipedia.org. Either extreme is to be avoided. Solomon expressed this in Ecclesiastes 7:16:
    Do not be overrighteous, neither be overwise—why destroy yourself? (NIV)

This code is in Ecclesiastes 5:3-14.

E.2c. What is Buddha's pomegranate? The Lord.

Some scholars believe that the pomegranate, not the apple, was the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. If this were true, this code would make great sense, since Buddha treated The Lord as a forbidden topic in his teachings. This code may tie in with Buddha E.1d (see above).

This code is in Ecclesiastes 7:3-8:17.

E.2e. Reduce your impurity, indeed provide the Buddha
with the vine of our lad, the nutrition of the exalted.

Additional translations of the phrase with the vine of our lad:
with the vine of our youth
with the vine we have shaken.

Reduce your impurity is definitely a Buddhist sentiment. Here is one example of a Buddhist point of view on reducing impurity:
    One by one, little by little, moment by moment, a wise man should remove his own impurities, as a smith removes his dross from silver. (The Dammapada, 18:239)

The nutrition of the exalted may be referring the rules about food for Buddhist monks, which are very strict:
    A monk is allowed to collect, receive and consume food between dawn and midday (taken to be 12 noon). He is not allowed to consume food outside of this time and he is not allowed to store food overnight. Plain water can be taken at any time without having to be offered. Although a monk lives on whatever is offered, vegetarianism is encouraged. BuddhaNet.net

The vine may be a symbol of the vegetarianism that Buddhism espouses.

This code is in Ecclesiastes 4:3-7:10.

Buddha Codes in Proverbs

P.1a. The monuments of Buddha are
your light of labor of a moving gift.

The monuments of Buddha are . . . a moving gift could refer to the little Buddha statues that are so common and that can so easily be moved, or it could refer to the largest collection of Buddha carvings, which are found at the Thousand Buddha Mountain.

This code is in Proverbs 21:21-28.

P.1c. The Lord hurried, already laying
the foundation for wine or for Buddha.

This code could mean, earlier in human history, the Lord laid a foundation of ethics in Judaism that served as a foundation for Christianity and for Buddhism. The ethics proclaimed by Moses (1450 BC) and Solomon (950 BC) are very similar, in most respects, to the ethics taught by Buddha (500 BC) and by Christ (30 AD). So the Lord hurried could refer to the very ancient revelations of God to the Jews of rules of human conduct. That wine could be a symbol for Christianity is supported by Jesus' usage of wine in Matthew 9:14-17.
    Then John's disciples came and asked him, "How is it that we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?"

    Jesus answered, "How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them? The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; then they will fast."

    "No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse. Neither do men pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved." (NIV)

This code is in Proverbs 8:24-9:8.

P.2c. He graced the brother and the Buddha
in them as from my light.

As well as Lord and Savior, Jesus is a brother to all who are believers.
    Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers. —Hebrews 2:11 (NIV)

Depending on who he is, this code could have a variety of meanings.

This code is in Proverbs 16:28-17:28.

P.2d. How is the honest Buddha moving?

Honesty is a basic tenet of Buddhism. It is part of the third step of the Eightfold Noble Path. Right Speech includes abstention "from false speech, especially not to tell deliberate lies and not to speak deceitfully." It is not considered a commandment, but a moral code of conduct that is willingly undertaken. It is also expressed in the fourth of the Five Precepts: "I observe the precept of abstaining from falsehood." (BuddhaNet.net) The precepts are all stated in the same pattern: I observe the precept of abstaining from . . .

This code is in the form of a question. From a Buddhist point of view, answers to that question could be: mindfully, meditatively, without harm to others, and toward enlightenment.

This code is in Proverbs 7:15-8:25.

Concluding Remarks

As we noted above, Solomon reigned from 971-931 B.C., and Buddha lived from 563 to 483 B.C.. Since Solomon lived approximately 400 years before Buddha, the possibility of Solomon's teachings reaching Buddha in India are not without possibility. Our initial thought to search for Buddha in Solomon's writings in Ecclesiastes 1-7, 11; Proverbs 1-29, proved to be very fruitful.

This group of codes resulted in a remarkable 70% success rate in finding extended ELSs among the shortest skips for Buddha E1, and in total, 56% of all the shortest skips resulted in extended ELSs. As noted in our Introduction to this article, 25% is a conservative estimate of the discovery rate for codes in non-encoded texts. Given that conservative rate, this group of findings is more than twice that rate. In addition, the content of the codes is relevant to the subject, which in such a notable group of findings cannot be considered random.

This article is one of a group of articles on Buddha and Buddhism codes. To read more, visit our Buddha Codes links page.


1Definition of oblivion:
  • Dictionary.com

  • Ehrlich, Eugene, Stuart Berg Flexner, Gorton Carruth, and Joyce M. Hawkins, eds. 1980. Oxford American Dictionary: Heald Colleges Edition. New York: Avon Books.

2Other links to information on Mindfulness:

3Symbolism of the pomegranate in Judaism:

Scripture References

Scripture quotations marked "NIV" are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

Commentaries and Background Information

For more information on Ecclesiastes and Proverbs, visit BlueLetterBible.org and go to the book and verse you are interested in and click on "L" to read commentaries on the passage. Additional information can be found on:

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