The Eightfold Path was conceived by the Buddha as a way to end the unlimited cycle of renewal, and
bring an end to our suffering. The Eightfold Course, and The Four Noble Realities are the
foundation of Buddhism. Buddha taught his followers that by following the steps set forth in The Eightfold Course anyone could reach the state of Nirvana, and bring an end to suffering. (DUKKHA)
Buddha’s Eightfold Course is signified by the eight spoke Dharma Wheel. Each mentioned the Dharma Wheel represents one of the Eightfold Courses. Each path is symbolically connected like spokes on a wheel, and operate in combination with each other to bring us to a state of enlightenment.
The Eightfold Path is likewise called the Middle Course. Buddha learned from his own experience on his course to enlightenment, and tried to communicate to his followers that we should look for balance in between decadent atmosphere, and self-mortification.
The 2 extremes of a life of rich abundance, and an ascetic lifestyle where one quits whatever, letting go of all belongings, and taking in very little food, or water are not the proper courses to Nirvana.
The Eightfold Courses as taught by the Buddha are:
- Right Comprehending
- Right Thought
- Right Action
- Right Speech
- Right Livelihood
- Right Effort
- Right Mindfulness
- Right Concentration
Siddhartha pictured both The 4 Noble Facts, and The Eightfold Course while looking for knowledge below a Bodhi tree.
What does Right refer to?
Buddha taught his fans, Right is that which is honorable, real, and ethically appropriate.
The Eightfold Paths are divided into three noticeably different classifications. Those classifications are as follows …
- Wisdom– Prajna (Sanskrit)
- Morals– Sila (Sanskrit)
- Self-discipline Through Meditation– Samadhi (Sanskrit)
The first of these categories is Wisdom. The paths of Right Comprehending, and Right Intention both fall under the Knowledge category.
The second category is Morals. The paths of Right Speech, Right Action, and Right Income are all part of the category of Morals.
The third and final category of the Eightfold Courses is Self-control Through Meditation. The paths of Right Mindfulness, Right Effort, and Right Concentration all fall under this last category.
Buddha’s Eightfold Course’s were not implied to be followed in any order, however need to all be practiced at the exact same time in unison with each other.
The course of Right Understanding:(Samma Ditthi) This difficult step upon the path of Right Comprehending, also called Right View, brings us to the conclusion that we must observe our surroundings, and accept circumstances and events around us for what they really are, and not for what our company believe they must be.
Right Comprehending includes Karma, and reincarnation. It includes accepting that there are Karmic consequences for all of our thoughts and deeds both good, and bad. This Karmic debt needs to be represented, and it will impact our future in our current lifetime, and in our next lifetime through reincarnation also.
Right Comprehending will cause beneficial renewals for our next life time, ultimately leading us to the end of reincarnation and suffering, as we Embrace Nirvana.
The path of Right Thought: (Samma Sankappa)
Our ideas and beliefs guide our future. What we focus on, and think about many creates our truth. Our actions develop our future through karma.
Our ideas must originate from a pure and loving state of mind, and need to be positive and uplifting in nature. Favorable ideas will direct us to a more satisfying and compassionate life. While negative thoughts, and accessory will just bring us suffering.
Our thoughts about others need to be positive also. No one is perfect, however there is something favorable to focus on about almost everybody. For those you experience who are genuinely vicious, and have no empathy for others, do not waste your unfavorable ideas on them. The very best decision you can make is to neglect them, and let them go from your thoughts.
The course of Right Thought is also called Right Intent.
Buddha taught that Right Intention can be broken down into three parts.
- The Intention of harmlessness. Do no damage to others.
- The Intention of Good Will. Your ideas and actions should be positive.
- The Intent of Renunciation. The act of letting go of attachments.
The course of Right Action: (Samma Kammanta)
Right Action describes performing our day-to-day jobs in a manner which is practical to others. Our intents as well as our actions matter. We must have good intents behind our actions, and never utilize deceit, or control others with our actions.
Right Action means following the actions laid out in the 5 Precepts which are …
- Avoid taking the life of a living being.
- Avoid taking that which is not easily provided to you.
- Avoid sexual misbehavior.
- Abstain from intoxicants that hinder your judgement.
- Abstain from incorrect, and slanderous speech is the fifth precept, however that of course belongs under the next course. The Path of Right speech.
The path of Right Speech: (Samma Vaca)
Before you speak, is it essential, is it real, is it kind. ~ Buddha
Right Speech is refraining from vindictively making false declarations, or utilizing our words in a manner that is damaging to others. Speech that is offensive, cruel, and damaging to others should be avoided.
We must avoid unethical, harmful, ill-mannered, and violent language when handling others. We must speak gently, and compassionately to those we experience. Our thoughts which play a big consider the words we choose to speak need to be kind and truthful.
If one has absolutely nothing favorable to state, than silence is always the best answer. Our words should constantly be useful to others. We must never ever take part in idle chatter, and hurtful speech about others.
The path of Right Income: (Samma Ajiva)
Right Livelihood is earning your living in such a method that is practical to others, and makes a favorable distinction in their lives. Service to others is a necessary component of Right Income.
We should abstain from earning money in ways that may trigger harm to others. This includes animal massacre, human trafficking, offering weapons, and selling alcohol and drugs.
The course of Right Effort: (Samma Vayama)
Right Effort begins with mindfulness. Our thoughts should be pure, clear and compassionate. It is our thoughts that are the prerequisite of whatever else in our lives. Our ideas manage our speech, decisions, and all of our actions.Right Effort is
putting it all together, and using our will to avoid unfavorable ideas, actions, and speech from emerging within us. Through Right Effort we can let go of negative energy, and focus our ideas and objectives on that which is great. The path of Right Mindfulness:( Samma Sati) Right Mindfulness implies understanding what you are doing in the present moment. Right now is all that we have. The past can not be changed, it is currently gone. Continuing to concentrate on the past results in suffering. We must accept our current circumstance for what it is, that is, the outcomes of our past decisions. Our ideas and actions in the previous determine our truth in today. We should bear in mind our thoughts and actions in the present, as they will inescapably determine our future. We need to release our past, particularly our undesirable and negative experiences. We need to bear in mind the lessons
that our previous mistakes have actually taught us, however we should never live in our past. Let the previous go. Do not let your previous errors mess up the present minute in your life. Usage meditation to focus your attention, and focus on today minute. The path of Right Concentration:(Samma Samadhi) Right Concentration includes training our minds to concentrate on that which matters most, and letting
go of that which binds us to physical truth. The
path of ideal concentration is concentrating all of our attention on all of the things that bring us closer to Nirvana. Right Concentration involves detachment which releases us from suffering. Before we can Accept Nirvana we should release the pleasures of the real world, and let go of
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