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Xeno-Fish

The Dharma and its Application

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Xeno-Fish

Based upon another thread. I felt the need to open a discussion about the application of the 4 noble truths.

https://pluralism.org/the-dharma-the-teachings-of-the-buddha

1. Life involves suffering, duhkha.

The “illness” that the Buddha diagnosed as the human condition is duhkha, a term often rendered in English as “suffering” or “unsatisfactoriness.” The Buddha spoke of three types of duhkha. First, there is the ordinary suffering of mental and physical pain. Second, there is the suffering produced by change, the simple fact that all things—including happy feelings and blissful states—are impermanent, as is life itself. Third, there is suffering produced by the failure to recognize that no “I” stands alone, but everything and everyone, including what we call our “self,” is conditioned and interdependent.

2. Suffering is caused by desire and grasping.

The Buddha saw that the impulse to crave, desire, or grasp something one doesn’t have is the principal cause of suffering. Because of the impermanence and continuous change of all that we call “reality,” the attempt to hold on to it is as doomed to frustration as the attempt to stake out a piece of a river.

3. There is a way out of suffering.

This is the good news of the Dharma. It is possible to put an end to ego-centered desire, to put an end to duhkha and thus attain freedom from the perpetual sense of “unsatisfactoriness.”

4. The way is the “Noble Eightfold Path.”

To develop this freedom one must practice habits of ethical conduct, thought, and meditation that enable one to move along the path. These eight habits include:

Right understanding: Truly and deeply knowing, for example, that unwholesome acts and thoughts have consequences, as do wholesome acts and thoughts.

Right intention: Recognizing that actions are shaped by habits of anger and self-centeredness, or by habits of compassion, understanding, and love.

Right speech: Recognizing the moral implications of speech; truthfulness.

Right action: Observing the five precepts at the foundation of all morality: not killing, not stealing, not engaging in sexual misconduct, not lying, and not clouding the mind with intoxicants.

Right livelihood: Earning a living in ways that are consonant with the basic precepts.

Right effort: Cultivating this way of living with the attention, the patience, and the perseverance that it takes to cultivate a field.

Right mindfulness: Developing “presence of mind” through the moment-to-moment awareness of meditation practice, including mindfulness of breathing, mindfulness of walking, and mindfulness of bodily sensations.

Right concentration: Developing the ability to bring the dispersed and distracted mind and heart to a center, a focus, and to see clearly through that focused mind and heart.

The request is simple. Theist, Atheist, those Spiritually inclined. Do you think the above is applicable within your life? 

Personally I find them to be an exercise in mindfulness. That if implemented would allow for most conscious decision making. 

What are your thoughts.

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Piney
13 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

Personally I find them to be an exercise in mindfulness. That if implemented would allow for most conscious decision making. 

Exactly. 

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Guyver
49 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

Based upon another thread. I felt the need to open a discussion about the application of the 4 noble truths.

https://pluralism.org/the-dharma-the-teachings-of-the-buddha

1. Life involves suffering, duhkha.

The “illness” that the Buddha diagnosed as the human condition is duhkha, a term often rendered in English as “suffering” or “unsatisfactoriness.” The Buddha spoke of three types of duhkha. First, there is the ordinary suffering of mental and physical pain. Second, there is the suffering produced by change, the simple fact that all things—including happy feelings and blissful states—are impermanent, as is life itself. Third, there is suffering produced by the failure to recognize that no “I” stands alone, but everything and everyone, including what we call our “self,” is conditioned and interdependent.

2. Suffering is caused by desire and grasping.

The Buddha saw that the impulse to crave, desire, or grasp something one doesn’t have is the principal cause of suffering. Because of the impermanence and continuous change of all that we call “reality,” the attempt to hold on to it is as doomed to frustration as the attempt to stake out a piece of a river.

3. There is a way out of suffering.

This is the good news of the Dharma. It is possible to put an end to ego-centered desire, to put an end to duhkha and thus attain freedom from the perpetual sense of “unsatisfactoriness.”

4. The way is the “Noble Eightfold Path.”

To develop this freedom one must practice habits of ethical conduct, thought, and meditation that enable one to move along the path. These eight habits include:

Right understanding: Truly and deeply knowing, for example, that unwholesome acts and thoughts have consequences, as do wholesome acts and thoughts.

Right intention: Recognizing that actions are shaped by habits of anger and self-centeredness, or by habits of compassion, understanding, and love.

Right speech: Recognizing the moral implications of speech; truthfulness.

Right action: Observing the five precepts at the foundation of all morality: not killing, not stealing, not engaging in sexual misconduct, not lying, and not clouding the mind with intoxicants.

Right livelihood: Earning a living in ways that are consonant with the basic precepts.

Right effort: Cultivating this way of living with the attention, the patience, and the perseverance that it takes to cultivate a field.

Right mindfulness: Developing “presence of mind” through the moment-to-moment awareness of meditation practice, including mindfulness of breathing, mindfulness of walking, and mindfulness of bodily sensations.

Right concentration: Developing the ability to bring the dispersed and distracted mind and heart to a center, a focus, and to see clearly through that focused mind and heart.

The request is simple. Theist, Atheist, those Spiritually inclined. Do you think the above is applicable within your life? 

Personally I find them to be an exercise in mindfulness. That if implemented would allow for most conscious decision making. 

What are your thoughts.

I like it.  I think it is wise and makes sense in many ways.. but at the same time, there are things I like to do in life that bring me pleasure, so I don’t practice that path perfectly.

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Guyver

BTW, well written OP.

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Xeno-Fish
Just now, Guyver said:

BTW, well written OP.

Most of it came from the supporting link. I felt the concept needed to be discussed among the members. 

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Mr Walker
5 hours ago, XenoFish said:

Based upon another thread. I felt the need to open a discussion about the application of the 4 noble truths.

https://pluralism.org/the-dharma-the-teachings-of-the-buddha

1. Life involves suffering, duhkha.

The “illness” that the Buddha diagnosed as the human condition is duhkha, a term often rendered in English as “suffering” or “unsatisfactoriness.” The Buddha spoke of three types of duhkha. First, there is the ordinary suffering of mental and physical pain. Second, there is the suffering produced by change, the simple fact that all things—including happy feelings and blissful states—are impermanent, as is life itself. Third, there is suffering produced by the failure to recognize that no “I” stands alone, but everything and everyone, including what we call our “self,” is conditioned and interdependent.

2. Suffering is caused by desire and grasping.

The Buddha saw that the impulse to crave, desire, or grasp something one doesn’t have is the principal cause of suffering. Because of the impermanence and continuous change of all that we call “reality,” the attempt to hold on to it is as doomed to frustration as the attempt to stake out a piece of a river.

3. There is a way out of suffering.

This is the good news of the Dharma. It is possible to put an end to ego-centered desire, to put an end to duhkha and thus attain freedom from the perpetual sense of “unsatisfactoriness.”

4. The way is the “Noble Eightfold Path.”

To develop this freedom one must practice habits of ethical conduct, thought, and meditation that enable one to move along the path. These eight habits include:

Right understanding: Truly and deeply knowing, for example, that unwholesome acts and thoughts have consequences, as do wholesome acts and thoughts.

Right intention: Recognizing that actions are shaped by habits of anger and self-centeredness, or by habits of compassion, understanding, and love.

Right speech: Recognizing the moral implications of speech; truthfulness.

Right action: Observing the five precepts at the foundation of all morality: not killing, not stealing, not engaging in sexual misconduct, not lying, and not clouding the mind with intoxicants.

Right livelihood: Earning a living in ways that are consonant with the basic precepts.

Right effort: Cultivating this way of living with the attention, the patience, and the perseverance that it takes to cultivate a field.

Right mindfulness: Developing “presence of mind” through the moment-to-moment awareness of meditation practice, including mindfulness of breathing, mindfulness of walking, and mindfulness of bodily sensations.

Right concentration: Developing the ability to bring the dispersed and distracted mind and heart to a center, a focus, and to see clearly through that focused mind and heart.

The request is simple. Theist, Atheist, those Spiritually inclined. Do you think the above is applicable within your life? 

Personally I find them to be an exercise in mindfulness. That if implemented would allow for most conscious decision making. 

What are your thoughts.

Personally while i respect the Buddha as an enlightened one and like a lot of Buddhism's  philosophy  and lifestyle practices and agreed with almost all the points,   I  still found a few things in this post to disagree with The y may be things  you have interpreted the teachings to mean. I am not sure 

First "suffering"  is NOT inherent in living, although physical  and  emotional pain is, for most people.   One point of Buddhism is to relieve or eliminate suffering as opposed to pain. 

I am not sure why realising tha t we are al interconnected, and indeed one being, would cause pain  The realisation of this   enlightens  and empowers, rather than causes pain  Maybe to people who were raised to believe they are important or more special than others, it might come as a shock to realise that  you are not. 

Likewise change is inevitable, and life itself impermanent . Why should that surprise or cause pain?

However,  The Buddha was right in recognising that  our minds' desires, when in conflict with our reality, causes disharmony and stress 

the two solutions  to create harmony are 

Change your reality (hard, but not impossible, in many things) eg want to be rich? Use your skills abilities and time to become rich  

change your thoughts (hard to understand in principle  but incredibly easy to do, once you  recognise the nature of your mind and its workings  

Instead of wanting to be rich, decide you  want be happy and content with what you have.  Then, in the words of the immortal Kirk "Make it so" ie create in your mind a sense of contentment and happiness which is not dependent on your physical circumstances  (but don't go too far or  you may become a "lotus eater", in such a state of bliss that you  remove yourself from  the practical things of the world  and stop contributing to it. )

 

I have never "suffered" in the last 45 years of my life, despite (quite rarely)  feeling physical and emotional pain 

I dont know if that is an application of dharma, but it is the result of a process I taught myself as a child and adolescent,  and the experience of enlightenment and contact with the cosmic consciousness when I was 12 or 13  

right understanding was easy. I was taught that as a child by humanist parents.

right intention was also taught to me but I was taught to practice it from  the time iI became aware of my own consciousness  (aged about 4 )

right speech is a natural development of the first two principles 

Speech is how we frame and communicate our thoughts.

Once we control our emotions and thoughts we can control our speech 

Right action was also taught to me from  birth But what constitutes right action is a subjective thing and depends on your own values   

Right Livelihood was easy for me. i always wanted to be a teacher which is an honourable and useful occupation   

I tried, but avoided, other work I was good at, like selling, because it involved practices I found to be harmful

Buddha was right that right effort is difficult, because it requires constant vigilance and discipline to maintain

Both mind and action must be aligned into a positive whole  

Right mindfulness

While I never used meditation, I used other skills/ discipline and a lot of time from the age  of 4 to my mid teens   to learn to be mindful, with constant awareness of my conscious and subconscious thought  This even led me to become mindful ie self-aware during my dreams. 

Right concentration

A discipline which takes time and effort to achieve but eventually becomes habitual and constant I simply cant think in any other way, now 

ie

Developing the ability to bring the dispersed and distracted mind and heart to a center, a focus, and to see clearly through that focused mind and heart

I no longer understand how adults can NOT  be thinking like this.  I mean i know why most cant but its like Ive forgotten what it was like before I began thinking in this way  

So; short answer Absolutely  Buddha had an understanding  and appreciation of, some practical truths and realities  

and yes they can be the foundation of complete self awareness and thus mindfulness  

But a person can come to these things and abilities without the teachings of others.

We all have the abilty of mind to achieve such goals all by ourselves.

We just need commitment, time, and discipline. 

It can take many years to achieve 

Ps Long answer?

yes

Talking about myself again ?

yes 

But, in my defence, this time you asked for it  :) 

Do you think the above is applicable within your life? 

What are your thoughts.

Edited by Mr Walker
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Nuclear Wessel
6 hours ago, XenoFish said:

Most of it came from the supporting link. I felt the concept needed to be discussed among the members. 

An interesting OP, for sure. :)

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Crazy Horse

The 4 Nobel Truths was the first lesson taught by the Lord Buddha after his enlightenment. There was a reason for this..

1; There is suffering in the world.

2; We suffer due to ignorance.

3; Therefore, to eradicate ignorance, is to eradicate suffering.

4; The way to eradicate ignorance is called "The Nobel 8 Fold Path."

In other words, when this happens, that happens, and, when this stops, that stops.

Lord Buddha was giving us the Law of Karma.

Once an individual understands this law, then one may realise it through experience, and may begin to manifest actions conducive to a peaceful, happy, helpful, and dutiful life.

An honest and mindful approach, set within these 4 Nobel truths, shall set one free of all suffering.

You know have the keys to Life, yet one must implement them diligently, moving from one state of being, to a completely new State of Being.

 

 

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Xeno-Fish
6 hours ago, Nuclear Wessel said:

An interesting OP, for sure. :)

With the theme of mindfulness in @Sherapys thread, I figured that it'll parallel nicely. I don't see where any particular belief is required to apply mindfulness to all aspects of one's life.

Plus the other thread on this was flame bait. This isn't.

Edited by XenoFish
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jethrofloyd

:innocent:

 

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Sherapy
20 hours ago, XenoFish said:

Based upon another thread. I felt the need to open a discussion about the application of the 4 noble truths.

https://pluralism.org/the-dharma-the-teachings-of-the-buddha

1. Life involves suffering, duhkha.

The “illness” that the Buddha diagnosed as the human condition is duhkha, a term often rendered in English as “suffering” or “unsatisfactoriness.” The Buddha spoke of three types of duhkha. First, there is the ordinary suffering of mental and physical pain. Second, there is the suffering produced by change, the simple fact that all things—including happy feelings and blissful states—are impermanent, as is life itself. Third, there is suffering produced by the failure to recognize that no “I” stands alone, but everything and everyone, including what we call our “self,” is conditioned and interdependent.

2. Suffering is caused by desire and grasping.

The Buddha saw that the impulse to crave, desire, or grasp something one doesn’t have is the principal cause of suffering. Because of the impermanence and continuous change of all that we call “reality,” the attempt to hold on to it is as doomed to frustration as the attempt to stake out a piece of a river.

3. There is a way out of suffering.

This is the good news of the Dharma. It is possible to put an end to ego-centered desire, to put an end to duhkha and thus attain freedom from the perpetual sense of “unsatisfactoriness.”

4. The way is the “Noble Eightfold Path.”

To develop this freedom one must practice habits of ethical conduct, thought, and meditation that enable one to move along the path. These eight habits include:

Right understanding: Truly and deeply knowing, for example, that unwholesome acts and thoughts have consequences, as do wholesome acts and thoughts.

Right intention: Recognizing that actions are shaped by habits of anger and self-centeredness, or by habits of compassion, understanding, and love.

Right speech: Recognizing the moral implications of speech; truthfulness.

Right action: Observing the five precepts at the foundation of all morality: not killing, not stealing, not engaging in sexual misconduct, not lying, and not clouding the mind with intoxicants.

Right livelihood: Earning a living in ways that are consonant with the basic precepts.

Right effort: Cultivating this way of living with the attention, the patience, and the perseverance that it takes to cultivate a field.

Right mindfulness: Developing “presence of mind” through the moment-to-moment awareness of meditation practice, including mindfulness of breathing, mindfulness of walking, and mindfulness of bodily sensations.

Right concentration: Developing the ability to bring the dispersed and distracted mind and heart to a center, a focus, and to see clearly through that focused mind and heart.

The request is simple. Theist, Atheist, those Spiritually inclined. Do you think the above is applicable within your life? 

Personally I find them to be an exercise in mindfulness. That if implemented would allow for most conscious decision making. 

What are your thoughts.

Excellent post, Xeno. 

I have to start with a resounding yes, that the above suggestions can be applied and one can get through anything as a result. 

Buddhism, Zen, offer a way to live mindfully, that in the practice of the suggestions  it speaks for itself. For me, the beauty of Buddhism is there is no holier than thou or I am special or better than it is about being human and in connecting to this humanness we connect to each other too. 

Xeno, Third eye recommend an incredible gem of a book. It is called “If You Meet the Buddha on the Road Shoot Him” Sheldon Kapp

For me, this is that one book that does it. Now this may not do it for you but I would love to hear your thoughts in the event you are interested, 

It would be really fun if we all read the book and discussed it.

 

 

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eight bits
3 hours ago, Sherapy said:

Xeno, Third eye recommend an incredible gem of a book. It is called

If You Meet The Buddha on the Road, Kill Him by Sheldon B. Kopp

You were close :D

Archive.org has it for borrow or download.

3 hours ago, Sherapy said:

It would be really fun if we all read the book and discussed it.

I'm in.

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Sherapy
10 minutes ago, eight bits said:

If You Meet The Buddha on the Road, Kill Him by Sheldon B. Kopp

You were close :D

Archive.org has it for borrow or download.

I'm in.


Ahhh, thanks for the correction and find,

Awesome, why don’t you or @third_eye lead the book club thread. 
 

When are you gonna start reading?
 

Any other posters in? 
 

I will start a thread if we have about 5 participants, @Hammerclawit would be great if we could get at least one person from all paths to read the book and participate and give feedback, insights, take aways, pro and con. 
 

 

Edited by Sherapy
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Sherapy
On 2/20/2021 at 12:58 PM, Guyver said:

I like it.  I think it is wise and makes sense in many ways.. but at the same time, there are things I like to do in life that bring me pleasure, so I don’t practice that path perfectly.

I think these suggestions are open to what works best for the person and using great care in understanding right mind, right truth, right action ..and it doesn’t mean righteous or holier than thou, or the only possible way, an important aspect of Buddhism is these are suggestions not set in stone rules or extremism or dogmatic. The goal is non judgment and do no harm. 

For ex: 
I walked the path of ahimsa I practiced veganism, because I thought it was better that somehow I would be a better person, more spiritually in-tune because of my diet. 
 

Clearly I was not practicing “right” anything and by getting the experience of being a vegan walking this path and observing myself I came to refine my thinking based on actuality as opposed to my ego attachment or investment or mentation. It was a eye opening journey and my take away was being attached to a right way then defending and rationalizing that way was not mindfulness and it created a lot of suffering, and unintended judging of others based on what they ate which led to guilt if  I didn’t follow the diet perfectly. A correction in my mindset evolved on its own simply walking the path. This to me is the beauty of Buddhism or Zen or mindfulness one is able to use their self awareness to grow towards non judgment and do no harm. For me, turns out, bread and too much sugar in my diet will keep me from optimal health, not meat. 


 

 

Edited by Sherapy
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Tatetopa

Is suffering to be avoided or embraced, learned from, and dropped when it is done?  Likewise is desire to be removed or studied as it evaporates?  

All of the right actions make life meaningful as they can be applied I do agree. With those in mind, one can go about living life and choose what truly seems best in each moment. 

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Sherapy
31 minutes ago, Tatetopa said:

Is suffering to be avoided or embraced, learned from, and dropped when it is done?  Likewise is desire to be removed or studied as it evaporates?  

All of the right actions make life meaningful as they can be applied I do agree. With those in mind, one can go about living life and choose what truly seems best in each moment. 

Exactly, I have gotten more open to suffering and as a result have learned much about it and quite frankly I appreciate the challenges to my own growth and the perspective shifts have given me more nsight into myself and others. As a caregiver, it is a plus to grasp and understand the vulnerabilities of the chronically ill. I have discovered that states of being come and go on their own. It has been a lot of fun and I enjoy the human experience it is becoming sacred ground to me. I think it is incredibly difficult for humans not be judgmental to themselves and others, it is hard for some to accept their humanness. 
 

This path incorporates and utilizes the human experience/condition and can help one grow in empathy and compassion for each other too. It makes sense the better we know and accept ourselves the more inclined we come from this perspective in our dealing with others. 

Edited by Sherapy
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Mr Walker
35 minutes ago, Tatetopa said:

Is suffering to be avoided or embraced, learned from, and dropped when it is done?  Likewise is desire to be removed or studied as it evaporates?  

All of the right actions make life meaningful as they can be applied I do agree. With those in mind, one can go about living life and choose what truly seems best in each moment. 

suffering is unnecessary and indeed, to my mind, unnatural (unlike pain or loss) 

Desire in itself is not bad. it is where desire creates conflicts which  bring turbulence of mind  and conflict of values.

  ie nothing wrong with wanting to be warm, if you  can get warm.

If you cant get warm, then its better not to want to be warm. 

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Xeno-Fish

Have fun folks.

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third_eye
3 hours ago, Sherapy said:

Awesome, why don’t you or @third_eye lead the book club thread. 

I'll have to sit out on this one for now, I hardly have time to flip through a book these days... 

~

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Sherapy
26 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

Have fun folks.

Xeno, stay strong. 
 

Let’s keep your thread on track here is where we have an opportunity to be reactive or reflective. 
 

What are your thoughts on reading 3rds recommend? 
 

And a book discussion thread ?

Edited by Sherapy

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Sherapy
5 minutes ago, third_eye said:

I'll have to sit out on this one for now, I hardly have time to flip through a book these days... 

~

Okay, I wondered if you were free. I think Eighty can lead if he is available. You can post your thoughts on occasion? Maybe.

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Xeno-Fish
1 minute ago, Sherapy said:

Xeno, stay strong. 
 

Let’s keep your thread on track here is where we have an opportunity to be reactive or reflective. 
 

What are your thoughts on reading 3rds recommend? 
 

And a book discussion thread ?

It's not even this thread. I think I've come to my own conclusions and there is so much that is completely trivial to me now. Plus I'm having a rather nihilist spell and for some reason enjoying it. All things burn out eventually. No need to grasp anything too tightly. All our hardships and triumphs are just a fart in a tornado. I think often of the sheer futility of life and see a bright spot. Why so serious? Do what you wish and harm none, because all things fade. All of it vanishes. Gone. No matter what aspiration and goals we obtain it's all dust and vanity. Atheist, theist, spiritual, etc. Just names, just titles people gives themselves. All of which are just illusions really. 

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third_eye
53 minutes ago, Sherapy said:

Okay, I wondered if you were free. I think Eighty can lead if he is available. You can post your thoughts on occasion? Maybe.

Sure, that's what I do anyways... 

:tu:

~

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Sherapy
5 minutes ago, third_eye said:

Sure, that's what I do anyways... 

:tu:

~

Hammer is reading it too, so far he loves it. 

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