The first teaching of the Buddha was called the four Noble truths’s. The 4 Noble truths’s speaks about suffering, and the cessation of suffering. in other words, how to get rid of it and make a happy life for ourselves and others. According to the 4 Noble truths, nothing in this world that exists without an element of suffering. However, for many people this sounds pretty grim – let’s face it, if everything is all about suffering then how can we ever be happy? But what actually are the 4 noble truths?
The Four Noble Truths
The truth of suffering (Dukkha) This means that suffering actually exists.
The truth of the origin of suffering (Samudāya) understanding where suffering comes from.
The truth of the cessation of suffering (Nirodha) understanding that because suffering exist, it can also be ended.
The truth of the path to the cessation of suffering (Magga) How to end suffering.
To put it in a nutshell, the Buddha taught, that once we understand the root of our suffering, which according to Buddhism is ‘desire’. Then we can actually move towards ending it. This is why the Buddha was often compared to a physician because he diagnosed an actual human and universal problem, then prescribed the cure in 4 relatively simple lessons.
But here’s something to debate….. LifeIf life is just suffering, as Buddhism claims, why is it some of us don’t see it this way? Why do some of us see life as wonderful rather than filled with suffering?
To be exact, Lama Ahbay Tulku Jigme Thupten Tendar Rinpoche -but who’d have thought it? On the 17th floor of a council block?
At a very young age, Rinpoche was identified by His Holiness the Dalai Lama as the reincarnation of the hermit Lama Lobsang Tenzin. A year later, he was enthroned as Tulku in Gaden Jangtse Monastery. There, at the age of seventeen, he was admitted to the congregational debate on the first chapter of Abhisamaya (Perfection of Wisdom), and six years later, to the congregational debate on Madhyamika (Middle Way). He studied Pharchen (Perfection of Wisdom) for six years, Uma (Middle Way) for three years.
I first met Rinpoche when he came to deliver some teachings & Puja in my hometown of Rochdale at a holistic centre. At that time I’d pretty much finished writing my first book but needed a foreword. The book was about death and dying from a Buddhist perspective and he agreed to read it through. True to the Tibetan way, for several weeks I heard nothing and then it was there in an email along with a self invitation to meet with me and my then group of Buddhist students in my home. This is really how we became friends and now each year Rinpoche comes with blessings teachings & laughter to eat and spend time with us. Ive never met anyone who’s laughter ricochets around so many people leaving them in hysterics so quickly. Some people identify one main teacher in life whom they stick with until death & sometimes beyond. For me, life has brought many great teachers, and subsequently many great lessons – Rinpoche being one of them. This year I expect we’ll be seeing him again for tea & teachings. Who is your greatest teacher?
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