Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The Noble Eightfold Path

The Noble Eightfold Path is the first method of practice taught by the Buddha at the Deer Park in Benares, soon after His enlightenment. Through the ages followers tend to preceive them as 8 separate paths that can be categorized into the 3 foundations of the path to Nibbana - Sila (morality), Samadhi (concentration) & Panna (wisdom). But in reality, although there are 8 paths, 1 path encompass all the others. Which is that? The path of Right Understanding/ View. The Avatamsaka Sutra says:

"Without views one maintains the Right View,
To see all things as they truly are;
If you hold on to any Dhamma views,
You will not be able to see the Dhamma at all."

To have Right Understanding first one should let go of all conceptions and views with regard to what is the true Dhamma. When all conceived ideas are disgarded, until there is nothing left to disgard, the Dhamma will reveal itself. So to have right understanding is actually to see one's mind as it really is, rather than just hanging on to doctrinal concepts like Dukkha (suffering), Anicca (impermanace) & Anatta (no-self).

When one has Right Understanding, craving, anger & ignorance are no different from the Buddha mind - that is called Right Thought.

The things you say are all fingers point to the moon (the absolute truth) - that is called Right Speech.

Whether walking, standing, sitting or lying down, you are totally at peace with yourself - that is Right Action.

Whatever occupation you do, u do it with a undistracted mind - that is Right Occupation.

Such an undistracted mind cannot be defiled and thus requires no effort - that is Right Effort.

Because it is fundamentally pure, awareness and unawareness becomes non-dual - that is Right Mindfulness.

Once this mind is realized, one will never lose it again - that is Right Concentration.

And so from this you see, one is all and all is one. Free yourself from concepts and do not let your mind be stagnated. That is what we call the Panna Paramita (wisdom perfection) of the Buddhas.

4 comments:

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jay said...

"Without views one maintains the Right View,

To see all things as they truly are;

If you hold on to any Dhamma views,

You will not be able to see the Dhamma at all."

A certain Thai monk was asked this question, "What is right view?"

He answered, "Not attaching to any view."

What do you think?

hoangkybactien said...

"Without views one maintains the Right View,

To see all things as they truly are;

If you hold on to any Dhamma views,

You will not be able to see the Dhamma at all."

A certain Thai monk was asked this question, "What is right view?"

He answered, "Not attaching to any view."

What do you think?

===

The four verses of the sutra cited above and the answer from the Thai monk are both correct and say the same thing!

It is consistent with the Diamond sutra taught by the Buddha and the Platform sutra taught by the Sixth Patriarch. It is called "abiding nowhere, attaching to nothing". If one, in an instant, can realize it, will see that it is obvious.

The truth is not very hard by itself as pointed out by the Thirth Patriarch Seng T'san in Faith-In-Mind teaching. What appears to be hard for everyone to understand is the limitation of human languages together with the discriminating habit of human mind: Not perfect and not very precise (languages).

Antique Buddhas said...

The noble eightfold path is one of the important principle teachings of Lord Buddha. Is the fourth truth in order to be free from the circle of life and helps in the path of attaining enlightenment.