The Four Noble Truths
1. Ordinary life brings about suffering.
2. The origin of suffering is attachment.
3. The cessation of suffering is attainable.
4. There is an Eightfold Path to the cessation of suffering.
The Noble Eightfold Path
1. Right View
Right view simply means to see and to understand things as they really are, not as you ‘wish’ them to be.
2. Right Intention
Right intention can be described best as commitment to ethical behavior for the good of the whole.
3. Right Speech
Buddha explains right speech as follows:
1. to abstain from false speech; not to tell deliberate lies and not to speak deceitfully;
2. to abstain from slanderous speech and not to speak maliciously against others; 3. to abstain from harsh words that offend or hurt others; and
4. to abstain from idle chatter that lacks purpose or depth.
4. Right Action
1. To abstain from harming sentient beings, especially to abstain from taking life (including suicide) and doing harm intentionally or unconsciously, including eating the flesh of others beings;
2. to abstain from taking what is not given, which includes stealing, fraud, deceitfulness, and dishonesty; and
3. to abstain from sexual misconduct.
5. Right Livelihood
Buddha teaches four specific activities that harm other beings and that one should avoid for this reason:
1. dealing in weapons;
2. dealing in living beings (including slave trade and prostitution as well as raising animals for slaughter);
3. working in meat production and butchery; and
4. selling intoxicants and poisons, such as alcohol and drugs.
6. Right Effort
1. To prevent the arising of unwholesome states;
2. to abandon unwholesome states that have already arisen;
3. to arouse wholesome states that have not yet arisen; and
4. to maintain and perfect wholesome states already arisen.
7. Right Mindfulness
1. Contemplation of the body;
2. contemplation of feeling (repulsive, attractive, or neutral);
3. contemplation of the state of mind; and
4. contemplation of the phenomena.
8. Right Concentration
Right concentration is the practice of meditation.