Author Topic: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.  (Read 1399 times)

Offline mrbambocha

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1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« on: September 02, 2012, 08:27:33 am »
Hi!
I wonder if someone could explain the 1st and 2nd noble thruths a bit more in depth.
Im just gonna say how my natural thought process goes like and I would love to hear your corrections.


1. All things are suffering. (all things cause suffering)
Isnt suffering a natural part of life? Isnt suffering good as a driving force to improve? If we never would suffer we wouldn't know how pleasure feelt.  Isnt the suffering what motivates us to progress and improve at work, with family and on your inner path (so we get more pleasure)? How can all things be suffering? Arent these stuff pure pleasure: sex, eating, sleeping, winning on lottery, getting a massage, spending time with friends and family, walking in the nature?

2. Desire is the cause of suffering.
If there is no desire there is no feelings and if there are no feelings there is no driving force to achieve something. Its the desire to succeed at work, with family and on your inner path that drives you to put in time and effort to progress in life. If there where no reward for the effort no one would do anything, right? So isnt desire a natural thing aswell to make progress in life?

Ive heard that the two driving forces in life is either to get something pleasurable or to avoid pain. How would life be without them?

Offline J. McKenna

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2012, 08:46:51 am »
try life without them      let us know how it went please
 
 
experience is a long standing teacher
...i found there was no "i" anywhere.....

Offline former monk john

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2012, 09:24:27 am »
i think your noble truths are a mistranslation, i was always taught;

1 Suffering exists
2 Suffering has causes
3 By eliminating the causes of suffering
4 Suffering ceases to be

obviously desire is one of many causes of suffering, illness is not usually caused by desire, for instance

also the 4 noble truths are sort of a scientific formula, you can replace the word suffering with many other negative things, for instance

1 Hunger exists
2 Hunger has causes
3 By eliminating the causes of hunger
4 Hunger ceases to be

1 Injustice exists
2 Injustice has causes
3 By eliminating the causes of injustice
4 Injustice ceases to be

1 War exists
2 War has causes
3 By eliminating the causes of war
4 War ceases to be

etc etc
« Last Edit: September 02, 2012, 09:29:34 am by former monk john »
to me, the signs of a successful practice are happiness and a cessation of suffering, buddhism often gives me this; not all the answers.

Offline sdjeff1

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2012, 11:51:49 am »
I've been studying the 4NTs and N8FP in as much detail as I can and so far this is what I think. We're fairly close on some things, but I do differ on some points. DISCLAIMER: just an enthusiastic beginner here.

First of all, for semantics, what's the difference between suffering and pain? Pain is unavoidable. Suffering isn't. Suffering is how one relates to pain. Pain such as bodily pain or mental pain or pain due to defilements of the mind, thus the need to cultivate compassion, contentment, wisdom, equanimity, etc.

I would further posit that suffering is actually closer to the word "dissatisfaction" rather than true suffering. One can experience state of severe suffering or "dissatisfaction". Whichever way one prefers to word it. I put the word dissatisfaction in quotes because the word (dukkha) doesn't have a literal translation, just a close one. It .can also mean stress.

Desire is a double edged sword and pleasure is not a end to a means. Desire to cultivate compassion, wisdom, equanimity, contentment, enlightenment, etc. is considered a good thing according to Buddhas teaching.

It depend on what you mean by getting something pleasurable. Also, One cannot altogether avoid pain. Even when the Buddha was told of the news of his former kingdom being destroyed by another marauding kind he recieved the news in silence. It is said that on that day he suffered. Also, he was known to experience anger. I read a Sutta (tried to find  it again but couldn't) once where he called a Bhikkhu a "worthless man" and railed against him for not correcting his views. That Bhikkhu was disrobed. So you see, not even The Buddha was 100% free of "dissatisfaction",  "suffering", or "stress".

 Could go into much greater detail on my opinions but this would be a way longer winded post. Keep in mind these are just my views.


It's easier to push the cart rather than thinking of pushing the cart.
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To be normal is the ideal aim of the unsuccessful.
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Offline mrbambocha

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2012, 08:10:20 pm »
Quote
try life without them
Id love to! Thats why i ask these questions because it doesnt make sense for me. I dont know how to look at it properly.

Quote
3 By eliminating the causes of suffering
4 Suffering ceases to be

That goes together with desire and attachment I guess. Thanks for the clarification of the word suffering, but I still dont understand how one could do something without desire or the fear of suffering. It doesn't exist in my mind for the moment. I cant see how that could be done, but Id love to! Ive always thought that one needs desire and suffering to do/accomplish anything, and that suffering is unavoidable. Ive read about the three charachteristics but I cant grasp it (thought I would do another thread about that after I get this clear).



Offline former monk john

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2012, 08:48:30 pm »
im pretty sure ive read monks saying there are good forms of desire, like desire to help people, desire to practice compassion etc, to me eliminating suffering has less to do with eliminating desire, than it has to do with accepting things the way they are and not trying to constantly change everything(which does involve some reduction of desire), fighting the idea that one more possession or thing will somehow bring you happiness, but thats just me personally, not necessarily supported by buddhist doctrine
to me, the signs of a successful practice are happiness and a cessation of suffering, buddhism often gives me this; not all the answers.

Offline Optimus Prime

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2012, 10:14:39 pm »
Noble Truth 1 is NOT all things are suffering - this is wrong and is quite a common misconception, but it's pretty widespread.  These are Noble Truths - not absolute truths where the Buddha declared from up high that all things are suffering - this is incorrect.  A Noble Truth is a relative truth whereby when you reflect on them and use them, you see through the suffering.

So Noble Truth 1 has 3 aspects:
I.  There is suffering
II.  It should be understood
III.  It has been understood
In other words, you reflect on the suffering and understand it - once you understand it, then you can overcome it.

Noble Truth 2 is:
I.  There is the origin of suffering which is attachment to desire - a craving or a thirst
II.  The craving, thirst, attachment should be let go of
III.  It has been let go of
So you let go of the attachment to desire and you realize what it feels like once you've let it go.

Each Noble Truth has 3 aspects x 4 Noble Truths making it a total of 12 to reflect on.

For more detail and elaboration, click here for the Pali translation of the Sutta of the 4 Noble Truths:
http://www.amaravati.org/documents/4noble2/data/04first.html
« Last Edit: September 02, 2012, 11:53:19 pm by Optimus Prime »

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2012, 02:47:12 am »
1. All things are suffering. (all things cause suffering)


It's worth looking more closely at what dukkha is, because it isn't easily translated.
Have a look here:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn45/sn45.165.wlsh.html

Offline dhammaseeker51

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2012, 03:34:03 am »
im pretty sure ive read monks saying there are good forms of desire, like desire to help people, desire to practice compassion etc, to me eliminating suffering has less to do with eliminating desire, than it has to do with accepting things the way they are and not trying to constantly change everything(which does involve some reduction of desire), fighting the idea that one more possession or thing will somehow bring you happiness, but thats just me personally, not necessarily supported by buddhist doctrine

I'm fighting desire at the moment! The desire to trade in my motorbike for a new one. I know it will last about 2 months before I give in to it, and that giving in to this desire will lead to some serious fun, not suffering (well dissatisfaction will eventually creep in in after about 2 years!).
Being a Buddhist will help me cope with the eventual dissatisfaction which I understand will be dukkha... It's a chance I'm willing to take  :teehee:

with Metta
 

Offline Lobster

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2012, 04:40:47 am »
Quote
1. All things are suffering. (all things cause suffering)
Isnt suffering a natural part of life? Isnt suffering good as a driving force to improve? If we never would suffer we wouldn't know how pleasure feelt.

The plan is to move towards more suffering, to heighten our capacity for bliss?
Bring out the boiling water. Lobsters and masochists first . . .  :teehee:

The word dukha as explained, has connatations of incompletness, unsatisfying. Imprefect.
This is very different from theists who proclaim a loving Cod (or other sky fish) who is doing that pain and evil thing for some greater porpoise.

We live by a carrot and stick mentality avoiding the stick and trying to stick to the carrot. So our existence as an ass, is led by the need to munch on the carrot and move away from unpleasant situations or experiences . . .

The Buddha proposed that we need not be attached to the carrot or fearful of the sticking points in our life. We sit on the ass and observe the movement . . .

You can still have intense experiences in Buddhism but the purpose is not to be overwhelmed, not to be dependent but to develop an increasing degree of independence.

Is every moment of your existence perfect, complete, always improving and evolving into greater happiness?
No?  :smack:
Bummer!
Dukkha.

Fortunately there is a cause of this Dukkha and a means to overcome much of the ups and downs of samsaric or normal existence.  :pray:

Does this help in some small way?  :dharma:

Offline mrbambocha

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #10 on: September 03, 2012, 09:48:35 pm »
Thanks alot for your responses and sorry for being a bit slow :D  This is so new to me so its really hard to grasp it after all these years of influence from the western society.

So your saying that there is suffering, not that "Im suffering"?
So the problem is that Im identifing myself with my feelings?
That Im clinging/attaching myself to thing and expecting thing?

And the solution is to be content with whatever happens?
I dont understand how that is possible or if id want that.
How can you live a life without feeling and emotions?
Isnt that to being apathetic?

I couldnt imagine a life without pleasure and feeling, but I guess its because  I dont know whats beyond that.

Offline Lobster

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #11 on: September 03, 2012, 10:14:41 pm »
Quote
I couldnt imagine a life without pleasure and feeling

 :)

Me neither . . . oh wait . . .
We have a technical term for this . . .
We call it death.  :teehee:

Imagine a life instead that is based on increasing ones capacity to enjoy
with a fuller and more intense capacity the beneficial effects of a life
based on the good. (that is kinda of the point of Buddhism)  :dharma:
A life devoted towards increasing the well being of oneself and others.
 
If there is only joy and pleasure in your life, you have no need to understand or accept the first noble truth.
You must be the first person ever who will avoid some form of death or other difficulties.  :namaste:

You can not avoid getting older.
Are you happy that you or others have suffering? Me neither. That kinda sucks . . .
This is dukkha.
You can not avoid the cessation of pleaure or of life - that is dukkha.
You can not avoid meeting a cyber-lobster and wondering why it is a little disquieting . . . Maybe I am part of dukkha . . .  :gawrsh:

So displeasure is a consequence of pleasure.
 . . . perhaps it is self evident or obvious . . .  :smack:

Offline sdjeff1

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2012, 01:04:01 am »
Thanks alot for your responses and sorry for being a bit slow :D  This is so new to me so its really hard to grasp it after all these years of influence from the western society.

So your saying that there is suffering, not that "Im suffering"?
So the problem is that Im identifing myself with my feelings?
That Im clinging/attaching myself to thing and expecting thing?

And the solution is to be content with whatever happens?
I dont understand how that is possible or if id want that.
How can you live a life without feeling and emotions?
Isnt that to being apathetic?

I couldnt imagine a life without pleasure and feeling, but I guess its because  I dont know whats beyond that.
1.There is suffering, you will suffer too. It's a fact. But, the more you work on yourself the less it will affect you.
2. For me, that would require a complicated answer.

fourth and fifth questions (I think) have a lot to do with the idea of self/no self. That's a a hard one get. I don't totally get it. a lot of people don't. It's a life long quest for many. It's the quest that's the fun part.

It may seem that some Buddhists are emotionless externally but the idea is to try and avoid extremes. Walkin equanimityas much as you can but still have fun. If you do go on Youtube for example, you'll probably end up running into some very animated well respected teachers. Ajhan Brahm comes to mind.

But try not discouraged and fall into nihilism and turn into a robot. bad juju.  :smack:

As far as your first three, I'm sure someone can tackle that better than I can at 1 AM.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2012, 01:28:15 am by sdjeff1 »
It's easier to push the cart rather than thinking of pushing the cart.
-anonymous monk

To be normal is the ideal aim of the unsuccessful.
-CG Jung

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2012, 02:23:55 am »
And the solution is to be content with whatever happens?

Imagine how nice that would be!  Not continually wanting and not wanting, not continually a victim of desire.

Offline Karma Dondrup Tashi

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Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2012, 12:41:45 pm »
For some of us the more emptiness we eat the more bliss is in the belly.

 :brick:
[size=90]what I want is a view. Hannibal Lecter[/size]

 


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