The Four Noble Truths and how they relate to One Another
Hinduism contends that the basis of Buddhism is the teachings and doctrines of Buddha. In Buddhism, the most important teachings are the Four Noble Truths which Buddha himself taught his followers. These summarize all Buddhism teachings. They reflect the basis of the lives of humans. “Truth” is a word that illustrates why mankind’s reality should be investigated. Therefore, The Four Noble Truths simply imply the realization of the afflictions of the human life. They include, the suffering truth, suffering cause, suffering cessation and path that leads to suffering cessation.
According to the suffering truth, Dukkha Ariya Sacca depicts life as a long process that includes unavoidable and inevitable stress (Tashi and Gordon 30). Human beings usually face many experiences and activities that cause them both emotional and physical pain. To human beings, suffering is any feeling that inflicts frustration, tension, discomfort, uneasiness and displeasure. As such, suffering truth teaches Buddhists that their life comprises of frustrating and discomforting situations. Buddha teachings state that suffering truth should encourage human beings to accept the reality that life is filled with displeasure. However, they should strive to find the means of ending their afflictions. Suffering is global or universal. Therefore, people should minimize its causes by living harmoniously with one another, practicing endeavors that lead to social welfare and controlling individual desires.
Suffering source is the other truth. This outlines the reasons or causes of afflictions. According to this truth, there is an unending human desire for doing what one likes regardless of the effects or consequences (Tashi and Gordon 58). Karma is the act of wanting to accomplish anything. Simply put, people clinch to their unpleasant karma and that is why they endure painful and discomfort situations. There are positive and negative consequences of every action that an individual takes. Thus, people are entirely accountable or responsible for the pain and suffering that they endure.
Similarly, the suffering cessation truth implies the end of the afflictions of a person. Human desires to accomplish or to clinch on unpleasant actions that cause adverse consequences cause suffering. Since one faces displeasure that they cause to themselves, they have the ability to eliminate it. Buddha teachings state that one can attain this by doing away with an unpleasant karma or letting go of displeasing events. Finally, the path that leads to the cessation of suffering is called the Eightfold Path (Satchidananda 118). This truth comprises of different actions that an individual should take in order to reclaim the lost joy as well as to end their suffering. Such actions include having the right perception, right deeds, resolve, right occupation, right communication, right endeavors, concentration and the right mental state (Satchidananda 121). The belief of Buddhists is that human suffering ends after practicing these eight actions.
Clearly, the Four Noble Truths have a relationship. The first truth depicts life as a suffering process. The second truth indicates that humans cause their afflictions (Tashi and Gordon 120). Third truth indicates that suffering is common to every human and it can be eliminated. The last truth offers a guideline for ending human suffering. As such, these truths serve like a clear sequence which outlines human afflictions as well as what causes them and a solution to these afflictions.
Satchidananda, Murty. Yoga: The Practice to Freedom from Suffering. The Review of Metaphysics. 15, 1 (1961): 118-124
Tashi, Tsering, and Gordon McDougall. The Four Noble Truths. Boston, Mass: Wisdom Publications, 2005. Print.