Path to Nirvana?

The teachings of the Buddha are covered in the articles on Buddhism and Buddhist philosophy. While there is disagreement amongst various Buddhist sects over more esoteric aspects of Buddha’s teachings and over disciplinary rules for monks, there is generally agreement over these points:

The Four Noble Truths: that suffering is an inherent part of existence; that the origin of suffering is ignorance and the main symptoms of that ignorance are attachment and craving; that attachment and craving can be ceased; and that following the Noble Eightfold Path will lead to the cessation of attachment and craving and therefore suffering.

The Noble Eightfold Path: right understanding, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.

The concept of dependent origination: that any phenomenon ‘exists’ only because of the ‘existence’ of other phenomena in a complex web of cause and effect covering time past, present and future. Because all things are thus conditioned and transient (anicca), they have no real independent identity (anatta).

Rejection of the infallibility of accepted scripture: Teachings should not be accepted unless they are borne out by our experience and are praised by the wise.

Anicca (Sanskrit: anitya): That all things are impermanent.

Anatta (Sanskrit: anātman): That the perception of a constant “self” is an illusion.

Dukkha (Sanskrit: duḥkha): That all beings suffer from all situations due to unclear mind.


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