Gautama Buddha has represented, to me, perfection of intention and purity of communication. I take inspiration from his life story and his teachings, which seem simple yet extremely profound. I respect his teachings for questioning set ways of thinking. I found immediate connect with him in his teachings involving non-violence and deep introspection. I feel his teachings and thought process are so clear that it is available and accessible outside the translations and interpretations – all of who I respect for having tried to sincerely carry his message. I connect with him as he went beyond the definitions and labels prevalent in his times. I connect with simple things that he chose – Pali to communicate his teachings, staying away from tradition and distancing himself from being cast as God – as natural to my way of thinking. I connect with him for being accessible to people from all race and creed. I appreciate his reach among people who have never been Buddhists in their life. I feel his personal power, his teachings of introspection and peace, cut across differences among people and bring them to him. I find similarity between his teachings and Patanjali’s and can easily connect his teachings to my daily life and apply them naturally. I feel deep respect for his being and deep gratitude for having taught what he did – as I feel I would have struggled at my life’s crossroads a lot more if such a person’s teachings did not exist.