For Buddha, the path to happiness begins from an understanding of the core causes of suffering. Those who consider Buddha a pessimist owing to his concern with suffering have really missed the point. In fact, he is a skilled doctor. He might break the bad news of our suffering however he also prescribes a pre-emptive course of treatment.
In this type of metaphor, the medicine represents the Buddha’s beliefs of wisdom and compassion known as Dharma. The nurses who motivate us – and show us the best how to take the medicine – are the Buddhist community. They are otherwise called Sangha. However, the illness can only be cured if the patient adheres to the doctor’s advice and follows the prescribed course of treatment — the Eightfold Path, the heart of which encompasses control of the mind.
In Buddhism, this treatment is not a straightforward pill to be swallowed but an everyday practice of mindful thought and action which we ourselves can test scientifically via our own experience. Meditation is, not surprisingly, the most well-known instrument of this practice, however different to popular belief, it is not about disengaging from the world. Rather it is a tool to train your mind not to reside in the distant past or the future, but to reside in the here and now, the space in which we are able to experience peace most readily.
Being In Charge Of Our Actions
Karma is an often-misunderstood Buddhist ideal. Most people see it as “what goes around comes around,” so you’ll only win big with Australian bingo online if you do good deeds first. However, karma in Buddhism actually encompasses the idea that a person has the ability to change any circumstances they face in life. It is meant to be a doctrine of responsibility and empowerment. For a Buddhist, hope is a decision.
The Cycle Of Rebirth
Karma plays out in the Buddhism sequence of rebirth. There are six distinct planes into which any living being may be reborn – three fortunate realms as well as three unfortunate realms. Those with favourable, positive karma are born again into one of the fortunate realms: the kingdom of demigods, the kingdom of gods as well as the kingdom of men. While the demigods and gods enjoy gratification that are unknown to men, they also suffer never ending jealousy and envy.
The realm of man is considered to be the highest realm of rebirth. Humanity does not have some of the luxuries of the demigods and gods, however, is also free from their relentless conflict. Equally, while inhabitants of the three unfortunate realms – of animals, ghosts and hell – suffer unimaginable suffering, the suffering of the realm of man is far lower.
Countless stories of Buddha’s compassion and consideration for all life flourishes. He taught truth and he also instilled compassion as he saw personal happiness as being related to the happiness of others. This type of lesson is shown in both the way he lived and the way that he died.