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Dnahn’s Book Review: The Noble Eightfold Course by Bhikkhu Bodhi

When I was a teenager, I was heavily involved in a regional Zen Buddhist group, which made a dramatic influence on the remainder of my life approximately the present. My research study into conspiracies and Sumerian folklore took me off the course somewhat, but Buddhism always held a valued place in my heart, even as I dealt with the implications of my research.

Recently, I restored my commitment to escaping samsara after checking out The Noble Eightfold Path: Method to the End of Suffering by Bhikkhu Bodhi, a Pali Buddhist scholar. This fantastic, concise book outlines the steps of the Noble Eightfold Course, the Buddha’s mentor for how to end suffering.

The Noble Eightfold Path begins with Right View, which is basically the Four Noble Truths

. Suffering is caused generally by desire (what we want), hostility (what we don’t want), and lack of knowledge( not understanding that yearning triggers suffering). The Escape of suffering is the Noble Eightfold Path. Right View is including the 4 Noble Truths into our lives.

The next part of the Eightfold Path is Right Objective. Right Intention is making a company decision to escape samsara, the cycle of suffering. It is likewise cultivating caring compassion towards other beings, understanding that they too wish to be without suffering. There is a terrific meditation that cultivates loving generosity towards other beings which you can find by click on this link. I smile so much whenever I practice this meditation!

Right Speech is next. Not lying should be obvious, however it’s likewise advised to avoid slander, extreme speech, insults, and idle chatter. Speech needs to be exact, caring, and useful. Right Action is primarily concentrated on the Five Precepts, which I took in my early 20s. Teachers of Buddhism can take additional precepts which restrict, among other things, consuming meat and ending up being a politician. (It needs to be apparent why political leaders trigger suffering!) Next is Right Livelihood, which indicates that we make our wealth lawfully, honestly, and quietly.

The next three actions of the Path– Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Concentration– are focused on numerous types of meditation. Bodhi states, nevertheless, that just following the breath can be a path to enlightenment from the very beginning, all the method to the end. Contrary to other teachers, Bodhi does not advocate establishing a certain rhythm or counting while breathing. Rather, he advises breathing naturally and focusing on the feelings of the breathing– the sensation of the breath going through the mouth or nostrils, the noise of the breath, the fluctuating of the body, and so on. I have actually found this to be extremely handy.

The only drawback of the book is that Bodhi can be a bit verbose. You need an excellent vocabulary to completely understand what he’s saying. Nevertheless, it’s generally pretty clear what point he’s attempting to make. If you require one book to fully explain the Noble Eightfold Course in as exact a way as possible, this book is it.

This is a”cheat sheet”I place on my refrigerator.The Eightfold Course is not necessarily incompatible with other faiths and belief systems. You can, for example, be a Gnostic Christian, as I am, and still believe in the Eightfold Path as an end to the cycle of life, death, and rebirth. There is some evidence that Jesus studied Buddhism during his “missing years” and integrated Buddhist teachings into his sermons. In this sense, Buddhism and original Christianity (not Catholicism or Protestantism) are totally suitable.

The Eightfold Path doesn’t require a leap of faith to follow. The Buddha has actually been referred to as a physician, and the Eightfold Path as a prescription to end suffering. All that is required is that you try it on your own, and see if it works for you. I only are sorry for that I didn’t research the Eightfold Path in more detail earlier in my study of Buddhism. But perhaps the time in between was needed to provide me some perspective.

Caring kindness to all of you! May you be healthy, pleased, and free of suffering! Like


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