Ethics in Noble Truth and Eightfold Path

Topics: Buddhism, Noble Eightfold Path, Four Noble Truths Pages: 4 (1449 words) Published: October 4, 2012
Ethics in the Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path

In this paper I will be discussing the concept of the four noble truths and eightfold path within the Buddhist religion. The four noble truths do not give concrete answers to metaphysical questions, unlike other religions. Buddhism teaches human existence is imperfect and the four noble truths are a guide to help steer away from suffering. The four noble truths are important to Buddhist ethics in that they are the way to nirvana and enlightenment. The first noble truth is life is suffering. To live means to suffer and since it is human nature, no one is perfect in any shape or form. While we develop, we inevitably have to endure physical and psychological suffering sooner or later. Each of us, no matter how rich or poor, is going to get sick, grow old, and die. Nothing is permanent, nothing can permanently satisfy us. “ Any aspect of life, no matter how seemingly pleasant, already has the seeds of the suffering that is a common denominator of all human experience” (Young) This is because things change and pass away; everything and everyone we love will someday pass away.

The Buddha also taught the reason behind the suffering that individuals experience. The second noble truth is suffering is caused by craving. “We suffer because our craving leads us to become attached to things or people and deluded as to the real nature of our situation in life (Young).” As long as we are unable to detach of moral pleasures, we will experience suffering. One must learn to overcome these greed, aversion, hatred, jealousy, etc. These conditions are always in hand with society, family, and within one’s self. Recognizing and understanding the second noble truth gives way to the freedom from suffering.

The third noble truth is cessation of suffering. “It is the complete fading-away and extinction of this craving, its forsaking and abandonment, liberation from it, detachment from it”(welsh). This may be the most...

Cited: Bodhi, Bhikkhu. The Noble Eightfold Path: the Way to the End of Suffering. Kandy: Buddhist publication Society, 1994.
Deal, William E. encyclopedia of bioethics. new york, n.d.
Koller, John M. Ethics In world Religion. Hawaii: Academic Searc Premier, 2000.
Voorst, Robert E Van. Anthology of world religion. seventh edition. Holland: wadsworth, cengage learning, 2011.
Walshe, Maurice. This have I heard: the long discourses of the budda. london: wisdom publications, n.d.
Young, William A. The world 's religions . 3rd edition. Upper Saddle River: Pearson Education, 2010.
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