Essentials of Buddhism

The Three Jewels of Buddhism

  • Buddha
  • Dharma
  • Sangha

The Three Universal Truths (Marks of Existence

  1. (Dukkha )- Suffering. Nothing is perfect but subject to imperfection.
  2. (anicca) – Impermanence. Everything in life is changing, all the time.
  3. (anatta) There is no soul but a person’s life force (Karma). The Karma can be good or bad, depending on how the person lives in this life.

Three Poisons of Buddhism

  • Greed (lobha)
  • Anger (dosa)
  • Ignorance (Moha)

Main Beliefs of Buddhism

  • Not explicit Belief in God.
  • Not Explicit Belief System.
  • Founded by great Spiritual Teacher Lord Buddha.

Essential Teachings of Buddhism.

  1. Ethical Teaching
  2. Meditation
  3. Devotion

Buddhist Philosophy

The Four Noble Truths

  1. Suffering
  2. The Cause of Suffering – desirous attachment
  3. The Cessation of Suffering
  4. The Path that leads to the cessation of suffering.

The Eightfold Path

  1. Right View
  2. Right Intention
  3. Right Speech
  4. Right Action
  5. Right Livelihood
  6. Right Effort
  7. Right Mindfulness
  8. Right Concentration

The Eightfold Path can be split into three

  • Wisdom (1+2)
  • Morality (3-6)
  • Meditation (7-8)

Five Precepts of Buddhism

  1. Do not take the life of anything living. (Do not kill)
  2. Do not take anything not freely given. (Do not steal)
  3. Abstain from sexual misconduct.
  4. Refrain from untrue speech, (Do not lie)
  5. Do not consume intoxicants.

In Abhisandha Sutta (AN 8.39), the Buddha said that undertaking the precepts is a gift to oneself and others: It gives one freedom.

The Buddha also later went on to say that breaking precepts may give minimal damage.

The Role of God in Buddhism

The Buddha discouraged intellectual curiosity over the creation of the universe and the Creator. He taught the important thing was spiritual practice and overcoming the roots of human ignorance. Until a seeker achieved liberation and freedom from bondage, concepts such as God and Creation were meaningless to seekers.

In one sense Buddhists do not believe in God – at least not in the Christian concept of God. However, it would be wrong to say Buddhist is an ‘atheist religion’. There is a belief in a consciousness/spirit beyond the material plane.

Buddha taught the goal of nirvana – a consciousness of infinite peace, light and bliss. One could say what is God if not this consciousness?

Related pages

buddhaBuddhists – Famous Buddhists, including Lord Buddha, Milarepa, the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh.