Ashoka the Great was an emperor in what is now India. His empire also stretched from what is now present day Afghanistan to Bangladesh. A devoted Buddhist, he is credited to being one of the major players in helping the religion spread across Asia.
(Not So) Fun Fact: When Korea Banned Buddhism
For most of its last remaining years of independence, Korea was ruled as the Joseon Kingdom. Confucianism was strictly the state religion with Buddhism being mostly outlawed.
Fun Fact: Buddha’s First Words
According to Buddhist tradition, his first words were, “On Heaven and Earth, I alone am honored.”
Fun Fact: Religion and Kublai Khan
Kublai Khan was the first Chinese Emperor of the Yuan dynasty. During his reign, religions from the west like Christianity and especially Islam had grown popular in parts of China. While many of his counterparts out west converted to Islam, Kublai Khan embraced Tibetan Buddhism.
Fun Fact: Where Buddhism Started
While Hinduism is the main religion in India, the country is also where Buddhism started. Buddha is believed to have taught his faith in what is now the eastern parts of India.