Buddha’s approach to the problem of life is in the Four Noble Truths was essentially that of a physician. He began by examining carefully the symptoms that provoke concern.
This formula makes it plain enough that the Four Noble Truths all revolve around a common subject, namely, the problem of suffering. They view this subject from four different angles: the problem itself, its cause, its resolution and the means of resolution.
The first noble truth is that life is dukkha, usually translated ‘suffering’. Dukkha, names the pain that to some degree colors all finite existence. Having an analytical mind, Buddha was not content to leave this First Truth in this generalized form. He begins with four moments when life’s dislocation becomes glaringly apparent. Rich, poor, average or gifted, this is the human condition.All humans experience:The trauma of birthOld AgeSicknessThe phobia of deathThere is no doubt that the last three are suffering, for when we are all fond of youth, health and life and feel miserable when these change into old age, sickness and imminent death. Birth is suffering simply because it is the passageway to all other types of suffering.
For life’s suffering to be healed, we need to know the cause, and the Second Noble Truth identifies it. The second noble truth is the truth of the origin or cause of suffering. The cause of life’s dislocation is tanha. To say as close to the original Pali word, Tanha is usually translated as ‘desire or craving’ Tanha is a specific kind of desire, the desire for private fulfillment. This craving can be understood as the cause of suffering at two different levels, one psychological, the other’ existential’.First, at the psychological level, we clearly see that craving lies at the bottom of all our sorrow, fear, worry, grief and the persons and things we love, when our hopes are disappointed, when our desires are not fulfilled. And as long as the flame of desire still burns, the stream of consciousness, the current of experience, does not come to an utter end at death. Rather, what happens is that craving drives the stream of consciousness forward towards a new body, a new psychophysical organism, one which accords with karma accumulated by the deceased person during his or her lifetime. In this way craving generates rebirth, and once rebirth takes place the whole process begins afresh: more growth, more agan, more sickness, another death; in short, a new cycle of suffering. (Bhikku Bodhi writes this eloquently in his book ‘The Buddha and His Dhamma)
The Third Noble Truth, the cessation of suffering, follows quite logically from the second truth. For if craving is the cause of suffering, then its cure lies in the overcoming of such craving. The cessation of suffering is Nibbana, the highest happiness and peace. This attainment can be understood at two levels, corresponding to the two levels at which craving is the cause of suffering.First the Psychological level: When craving is eliminated, all the mental unhappiness cause by craving is also removed. The mind is released from the fever of the passions and attains dispassion. Freed from all sorrow, it becomes sorrowless, freed from all bonds, it enjoys supreme peace and security. This is the inward state a person who has attained Nibbana in this very life. Freed from ignorance and craving, a person can never again be touched by fear, anxiety , disappointment and worry.Second, the existential or biological level: With the breakup of body at death, the life process of person at last comes to end. After flowing on through an endless cycle, the round of rebirths is broken. There remains only a deathless element, which the Buddha calls the Unborn, Unmade, Unbecome, Unconditioned.
The Fourth Noble truth teaches how to reach Nirvana, how to attain the end of suffering, how to realize the Deathless. This is the Buddha’s course of treatment for the disease of suffering.The way is the Noble Eightfold Path made up of eight factors: Right view, Right Intention, Right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness and rignt concentration.A discussion of the Noble Eightfold Path brings us to the second major aspect of the Buddha’s teaching, the Path of Practice.
20110326 four noble truths
Buddhist Association of Canada<br />Cham Shan Temple<br />加拿大佛教會 湛山精舍 禪修學佛入門 <br />Introduction to <br />Buddhism and Meditation<br />2011/03/26<br />
Buddhist Association of Canada<br />Cham Shan Temple<br />ná mó fó tuó<br />南 無 佛 陀<br />Namo Buddha<br />ná mó dá mó <br />南 無 達 摩<br />Namo Dharma<br />ná mó sēng qié<br />南 無 僧 伽 <br />Namo Sangha<br />
Buddhist Practice and Cultivation in Four Lines<br />1 Take refuge in the Three Treasures of the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.<br />2 Earnestly cultivate the Three Perfections of Morality, Calmness, and Wisdom. <br />3 Shed the Three Poisons of Greed, Anger and Delusion.<br />4 Purify the Three Karmas of Action, Speech and Thought.<br />
Basic Terms<br />5 aggregates (skandhas)<br />4 elements<br />6 sense organs, 6 sense objects, 6 sense consciousness<br />12 links of causation (nidāna)<br />4 noble truths and 8 fold path<br />6 paramitas <br />4 persuasions<br />3 / 5 vehicles<br />10 realms<br />
Walking Meditation<br />Being mindful on Steps, Breathing, Counting or Smiling.<br />Choosing an object of attention<br />Using a phrase or mantra as an object of attantion e.g. “NamoAmituofo ”<br />Walking to feel appreciation<br />Walking to find peace<br />Walking to experience miracle<br />Walking to see Four Noble Truths<br />Walking to understand suffering<br />Walking to cultivate compassion<br />Walking to exercise compassion like an enlightened one<br />
Sitting Meditation<br />Regulating Body, Breathing and Mind<br />Counting breaths<br />Following breaths<br />Focusing on one point <br />Sustained attention on the present moment – Don’t let your mind fall into the future (expectations) or the past (experiences).<br />Silent awareness of the present moment – Stop inner commentaries, judgements. <br />Letting go of diversity, desires, experiences, commentaries by focusing on breathing.<br />Count your breaths from 1-10, 10 times.<br />
Death</li></li></ul><li>II. The Noble Truth of the Origin of Suffering<br />The second noble truth is the truth of the origin or cause of suffering, and here the Buddha states that craving is the origin of suffering. <br /> This craving can be understood as the cause of suffering at two different levels, one psychological, the other ‘existential’.<br />
III. The Noble Truth of the Cessation of Suffering<br /> If craving is the cause of suffering, then the way to eliminate suffering is to eliminate craving.<br /> The cessation of suffering is ‘Nirvana’<br /> Two levels: Psychological & Existential<br />
IV. The Noble Truth of the Way to the Cessation of Suffering<br /> Prescribes how the cure can be accomplished.<br /> The overcoming of tanha (craving & attachment) , <br />the way out of our captivity is <br /> through the Noble Eightfold Path.<br />The Noble Eightfold Path: <br />Right view, Right Intention, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, <br />Right Effort, Right Mindfulness and Right Concentration<br />
The Noble Eightfold Path<br />Wisdom: Right View and Right Intention are the wisdom path. Right View is not about believing in doctrine, but in perceiving the true nature of ourselves and the world around us. Right Intention refers to the energy and commitment one needs to be fully engaged in Buddhist practice.<br />Ethical Conduct: Right Speech, Right Action and Right Livelihood are the ethical conduct path. This calls us to take care in our speech, our actions, and our daily lives to do no harm to others and to cultivate wholesomeness in ourselves. This part of the path ties into the Precepts.<br />Mental Discipline: Through Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Concentration we develop the mental discipline to cut through delusion. Many schools of Buddhism encourage seekers to meditate to achieve clarity and focus of mind.<br />
Chapters Nine and TenFour Great Mountains in China<br />Match the followings in pairs:<br />Wu Tai ShanKshitagarbha<br />JiuHua Shan Avalokitesvara<br />PuTuo ShanSamantabhadra<br />Emei Shan Manjusri<br />What are these Bodhisattvas representing in Buddhism?<br />Which mountain is the most popular wayplace for Chinese and Tebetan Buddhists practicing together?<br />Where is Buddha’s Sarira kept in Wu Tai Shan?<br />Which mountain is famous in having corporeal bodies of monks and nuns?<br />Why did a Japanese monk build a temple at Putuo Shan?<br />What are the key senic sites at Emei Shan?<br />
Chan Master Wu Xia 無暇禪師<br />The Corporeal Body Hall houses the skeleton of Monk Wu Xia has been well preserved for more than 350 years. Wu Xia once wrote sutras with a mixture of gold powder and his own blood in a cave of Mt. Jiuhua during Ming Dynasty. After hard practice of sutras for a hundred year in Mt. Jiuhua, Wu Xia passed away at the age of 126. His body was found in the cave three years after his death. Monks on the mountain believed Wu Xia was the reincarnation of Bodhisattva. From then on, Buddhist believers have been keen to visit the mountain to pay homage to the monk.<br />