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Some 2,500 years ago, Siddhartha Gautama, a prince of the royal Shakya Clan of Nepal, meditated under the bodhi tree (a type of fig tree) in the Indian town of Bodh Gaya (in eastern India) and attained enlightenment. Gautama Buddha is often called the Shakyamuni Buddha because of his lineage. Heart Sutra is a popular Mahayana Sutra known for its brevity and depth of meaning.
The Buddha's hands are in Varada Mudra. This mudra denotes the act of charity and benevolence, with the associated emotions of sincerity and compassion.