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21:38 _ 21-09-2018

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The Four Noble Truths

I. Origin and definition:

The Buddha Dharma is not based on the fear of the unknown, but on the base on of facts which can be tested and verified by experience. Buddhism is rational and intensely practical. Buddha, after attained enlightenment, He went to Loc Gia park (dear-park) at Isipatana (Chư Thiên đọa) to convert the Kondanna's brothers, His five former companions. At first, they did not listen to Him; but His appearance was spiritual beauty, His teaching was sweet and convincing, they soon turned and gave Him their closet attention and then became His disciples which earned them the Arahats state. His first lecture to them was called The Four Noble Truths. These four truths represent the philosophy and the ethics of Buddhism. They are the foundations of Buddhism.

II. The Forms of Four Noble Truths:

1. True of Suffering: The misery of evolutionary existence results in births and deaths, one life after another. There are eight different forms of suffering:

a. Suffering from Birth: The suffering that one faces following births.

b. Suffering of old age: The physical and mental suffering one faces when getting old.

c. Suffering of Illness: Suffering that one gets ill or disease.

d. Suffering of Death: Suffering that one gets when approaching death.

e. Suffering from the Separation of objects one love: The suffering that one gets from the separation.

f. Suffering from the Association with those who are repugnant: Suffering that one gets around unpleasant people.

g. Suffering from Craving for what cannot be attained: The suffering that one gets when not receiving what one craves.

h. Suffering from Five aggregates of attachment: each person suffer differently depending upon his personality, society and relations to nature.

2. The cause of suffering: This truth is the cause of suffering which has been obtained in the past life of the being. This cause based on the followings:

a. Sensuality, bodily passions (Kama): Craving for sensual pleasures.

b. Hatred, ill-feeling: Anger, hot temper

c. Ignorance (Avijjã): Lack of knowledge, unawareness.

d. Pride (Mãna): Overhigh opinions of oneself, undervalue the opinion of others.

e. Doubt (Vicikicchã): Waver in opinion, feel distrust, be inclined to disbelief.

f. Delusion of self (Sakkãya-ditthi): Belief in the personal is truth and forever.

g. Love of life on earth (Ruparaga): Try to make the one's life last forever.

h. Desire for life in heaven (Aruparaga): Desire for the purity world.

i. Self-righteousness (Uddhacca): Never listen to the right opinion.

j. Dependence on superstitious rites (silabbata-parãmãsa): Believes and practices the wrong precepts.

3. The Noble Truth of Annihilation of Suffering: It is to destroy completely the craving, ignorance, sorrow. It is the Nirvana.

A. Nirvana: is formed of Nir and Vana. Nir is a negative particle and Vana means lusting or craving. Nirvana is a departure from the craving, and is the final beatitude that transcends suffering, karma and samara. Nirvana has three characters:

1) Unborn: Not to be born because the life has been eliminated.

2) Purity and calm.

3) Enlightenment: Destroying the fetters, get out of ignorance, ending the suffering.

B. Stages of advancement:

1) Tu-ñà-Hoàn (Sotãpatti) (Stream - Winner) - the beginning or entering into the tream of sainthood which occurs after one's clear perception of the "Four Nobles Truths". He had destroyed three fetters (self-illusion, doubts and wrongful rites). As he has not eradicated all fetters, he is reborn seven times at the most.

2) Tu-ñà-Hàm (Sakardãgãmi) (Once returnee) - the path of one who has restricted of two or more fetters (Sense-desire and ill-will) that he needs only return once to this material world.

3) A-Na-Hàm (Anãgami) (Never returnee) - the path of those who have so far conquered self that they need not return to this world. But he is reborn in the "Pure Abodes", a congenial Brahma world until he attains Arahatship.

4) A-La-Hán (Arahat) - the path of the holy and worthy Arahat, who is not only free from the cyle of life and death, but has capacitated himself to enjoy the perfect wisdom, boundless compassion for the ignorant and misery, and measureless love for all being.

4. The Path leading to the Annihilation: The Noble Truth of the Path leading to the Annihilation of Suffering is the Middle Way (The Eightfold Paths).

a. Right view

b. Right thought

c. Right speech

d. Right action

e. Right means of livelihood

f. Right effort

g. Right mindfulness: Right remembrance and self-discipline

h. Right meditation.

In brief, the Middle Way is the path leading to Nirvana. It helps us to get out of the ignorance, and attain the enlightenment.

III. buddhist with the four Noble Truths:

Whether the Buddhas arise or not, these four Truths exist in the universe. The Buddhas only reveal these Truths that lay hiÇen in the dark of time. According to the Buddha, the happinesses that the man enjoys in the sensual pleasures are the momentary happinesses, illusive and temporary; only nonattachment is a greater happiness. Buddhism sees suffering as natural condition and seeks the cause to eradicate it. Suffering exists as long as there is craving. It can only be annihilated by practicing the Eight-Fold Noble Path and attaining the supreme bliss of Nirvana. As a Buddhist, we need to follow His teaching.

Chánh Thiện

1.     Ngài Ma Ha Ca Diếp - Ma-Ha Ca-Diep

2.     Ngài A Nan Ðà - A Nan Da

3.     Ngài Nguyên Thiều - NguyenThieu

4.     Ngài Liễu Quán - LieuQuan

5.     Bốn Sự Thật Cao Thượng(Tứ Diệu Ðế) - The Four Noble Truths

6.     Mười Hai Nhân Duyên (Thập nhị nhân duyên) - The Principle of The Dependent Origination (Paticca samuppada)

7.     Tám Chánh Ðạo - The Eight-Fold Noble Path

8.     Kinh Mười Ðiều Thiện - The Sutra of The Ten good deeds

9.     Thiện Ác Nghiệp Báo  - Karma

10.  Sáu Ðộ - The Six Perfections

11.  Phép Quán Tưởng và Niệm Phật - The Methods of Meditating on Buddha

12.  Bát Quan Trai - The Eight Retreat Precepts

13.  Phật Giáo Việt Nam Từ Ðời Trần đến Cận Ðại - Buddhism in Vietnam from The Tran Dynasty to Present

14.  Tình Thần Không Chấp Thủ, Tinh Thần Tùy Duyên Bất Biến

15.  Phật Giáo Là Triết Học Hay là Một Tôn Giáo?

16.  Quan Ðiểm Của Phật Giáo Về Con Người - Vấn Ðề Tâm Vật Trong Ðạo Phật -  Buddhist viewpoint On Human Beings. About Spirit and Matter In The Buddhism 

17. Quan Ðiểm Của Phật Giáo Về Vũ Trụ - Vấn Ðề Nguyên Nhân Ðầu Tiên - Buddhism's Viewpoint ON The Universe The First Cause