Giraudon/Art Resource, NY

An 18th-century Tibetan painting illustrates the birth of Siddhartha, who would become the Buddha. Buddhist legend recounts how the newborn took seven steps (as shown here), corresponding to the seven stages, or heavens, he would pass through to reach Nirvana. The infant is said to have declared: “I rank as the first in the world. I am the highest in the world. This is my last birth. There is now no other existence for me.”