Buddhism's Four Noble Truths

Buddhists believe in Four Noble Truths which attempt to explain the fact that suffering exists in our lives and what can be done to free oneself from it.

By: Tanya Brenton

Have you ever sat back and wondered what you have done to deserve the suffering in your life?

The Buddhist religion attempts to explain the reason for suffering in its Four Noble Truths. According to this belief system, suffering exists, has a cause, has an end, and there is a way to bring about the end.

The Buddha preached that physical and mental suffering comes from desire and ignorance. We will never be satisfied if we spend our lives craving "pleasure, material goods, and immorality" (pbs.org). Only aging, sickness, and death are inevitable, which means these desires lead to suffering as an "unquenchable thirst" (pbs.org). Suffering is also brought on by our greed, envy, and hatred.

The end of one’s suffering comes when he/she reaches Nirvana – a state of peace and rebirth. In order to achieve this spiritual enlightenment, the Buddhist religion believes in the Noble Eightfold Path. The themes consist of good moral conduct, meditation and mental development, and wisdom and insight. By living life on this path, one will reach Nirvana and be free of suffering.

The idea that suffering exists is not a pessimistic view, but an attempt to understand the world and fix it.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama will speak on Oct. 18 and 19 at Western Connecticut State University, and the public is invited to a free showing (video simulcast) in the Ives Concert Hall, 181 White St. To help promote this opportunity, WCSU students in the Writing, Linguistics and Creative Process Department's Advertising, Copywriting and Promotions class created a Twitter page. and they are writing this blog daily.

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