THE NOBLE EIGHTFOLD PATH
1. THE RIGHT VIEW Is to Understand
1. UNSATISFACTORINNESS = DUKKA
2. HOW IT ARISES
3. 0IT’S CESSATION [Disappearance]
4. THE WAY to the cessation.
These elements are very essential factors in Buddha’s teaching because without the Path without the Path full deliverance from SUFFERING would become a mere DREAM. The Path is what makes Damma available to us as a living experience.
The Right View
In order to see the way to travel along the Path we need the VISION and UNDERSTANDING.
PRACTICE and good CONDUCT is a must in order to bring us to our destination.
It is our guide to show us where we are STARTING from; and where we are HEADING and what are the Successive stages to be passed through in PRACTICE.
All the essential teaching of Buddha is confined in these; Four Noble Truths.
The Eight Fold Path consists of three groups.
1. Right View
2. Right Intention
B. MORAL DISCIPLINE
1. Right Speech
2. Right Action
3. Right Livelihood
1. Right Effort
2. Right Mindfulness
3. Right Concentration
The Right View is defined as the understanding of the Four Noble Truths.
2. Its Origin
3. Its cessation and the
4. WAY to its cessation
The Right View is to understand the correct perspective on the human condition. One has to see that life is not fully SATISFACTORY, that Life is IMPERMANENT and that it is subject to CONSTANT CHANG.
This is something one has to penetrate by means of KNOWLEDGE, something one has to CONQUER, and NOT something he would ESCAPE from by pain removers, entertainment, distraction or forgetfulness.
The CAUSE of Dukka - unhappiness lies in one’s mind. Nobody is imposing it on us. We cannot put the blame outside ourselves.
It’s through our own CRAVING and CLINGING that we produce SUFFERING and PAIN for ourselves.
Hence the KEY is the liberation. It too lies in our own MIND. The key is the overcoming of IGNORANCE and CRAVING by means of WISDOM.
To enter the Path we need the Confidence that by following the Noble Eightfold Path we can reach the goal – the CESSATION of SUFFERING.
The Buddha defines Right View as the understanding of the Four Noble Truths for a very important Reason. He does not want his Disciples to PRACTICE his TEACHING merely out of Devotion or Feelings. But to follow the Path on the basis of their UNDERSTANDING and own INSIGHT into the NATURE of human life.
As the MIND develops in the course of PRACTICE; the UNDERSTANDING will gradually deepen, expand and gradually widen, and as it does, we come back again and again to RIGHT View.
RIGHT INTENTION – Samma Sankappa
Through RIGHT VIEW we gain an understanding of the real nature of EXISTENCE and this understanding changes our Motivation, our Purposes in life, our Intention and Inclinations resulting Right Intention as opened to Wrong Intentions.
There are three kind of Right Intentions:
1. The intention of Renunciation
2. The intention of non - aversion or LOVING KINDNESS of non- lingury or COMPASSION.
These are opposed to the three Wrong Intentions:
1. The Intention of SENSULITY
2. The Intention of AVERSION
3. The Intention of HARMFULNESS or CRUELTY.
The Right INTANTION follows naturally from Right View. Whenever we gain RIGHT VIEW, INSIGHT into the fact of DUKKA [the suffering], then we become motivated to RENOUNCE our. ATTACHMENTS, our CLINGING to Pleasure Wealth, Power and Fame. We do not have to SUPPRESS.
These three are opposed to the;
1. Intention of Sensuality.
2. Intention of Aversion.
3. Intention of Harmfulness or Cruelty.
Whenever we gain RIGHT VIEW, Insight into the fact of Dukka, then we become motivated to renounce our Attachments, our Clinging to pleasure, wealth, power and fame. We need not suppress our Desire for them. The desire falls off NATURALLY by itself.
When we look at other Beings through the lens of FOUR NOBLE TRUTHS, we see that others are also caught up in the NET of SUFFERING.
This PERCEPTION brings about a deep identification with others, a feeling of ONENESS with them which leads to LOVING KINDNESS and COMPASSION as these attitudes arise, they motivate us to renounce aversion and hatred and all VIOLENCE and CRUALTY.
RIGHT SPEECH - Samma Vacha
Consists of Four aspects;
1. Abstinence from Falls Speech – [not lying] instead making an EFFORT to speak truthfully.
2. Abstinence from Slanderous Speech, statements unintended to divide or create enmity between people.
Instead, the Follower of the Path should always speak words which promote Friendship and Harmony between people.
3. Abstinence from Harsh speech, from speech with a ANGRY and BITTER, which cuts into the hearts of others.
Instead one’s speech should always be Soft, Gentle, and Affectionate.
4. Abstinence from Chatter, from Gossip. Instead one should speak words which are Meaningful, Significant and Purposeful.
By now it may be possible to know the tremendous power locked up in the faculty of speech.
This little organ can do immense Good or immense HARM depending on how it is USED.
What we really have to master is not the tongue but the Mind which makes use of the Tongue.
RIGHT ACTION - Samma Kammantha
Has three aspects;
1. Abstinence from destructions of life. Do not kill, abstain from hunting, fishing and such other.
2. Abstinence from taking what in not given. From Stealing, Cheating, Exploring others. Gaining wealth by dishonest and illegal ways.
3. Abstinence from Sexual misconduct [ Adultery, Seduction Rape]
Though Right Speech and Right Action are worded negatively it has a positive psychologial effect such as:
1. Abstinence from taking of life implies a commitment to Compassion, respecting the life of other beings.
2. Abstinence from Stealing a commitment to Honesty: respect for others rights of ownership.
3. Abstinence from false Speech a commitment to Truth.
RIGHT LIVELYHOOD – Samma Ajiva
To avoid any Occupation or Job that causes harm and suffering to others or any kind of work that leads to one’s own Inner Deterioration. Instead he should earn a living in an honest, harmless and peaceful way.
There are five occupations one should avoid:
1. Dealing in flesh (Butcher)
2. Dealing in poison.
3. Dealing in Weapons and Arms.
4. Dealing in Slave Trade and Prostitution.
5. Dealing in Intoxicants or Liquors or Drugs.
The Three Factors discussed above – RIGHT Speech, RIGHT Action and RIGHT Livelihood. Deal with the outer conduct of life.
RIGHT EFFORT – Samma Vayama
The practice of the Eight Fold Path requires high degree of Work, Energy and Exertion.
The Enlightened ones point out the PATH. One MUST make the EFFORT.
These Goals is for the ENERGETIC person, not for the LAZY one.
The Buddha says through RIGHT EFFORT one can transform the whole structure of life.