Professor James Finch
July 31, 2015
University of Phoenix Material
Write a 1- to 2-paragraph response for each of the following.
1. Explain the basic Buddhist teachings including the three marks of reality, the Four Noble Truths, and the Noble Eightfold Path.
The three marks of reality are;
1) Change – The only thing constant in life is change.
2) No Permanent Identity- As humans we are made up of several different parts and we are constantly changing never to remain the same as we once were.
3) Suffering- To live life is to suffer and experience sorrow; we can never be satisfied because of life’s avoidable change.
The Four Noble Truths are a linked chain of truths about life:
1) Suffering exists
2) It has a cause
3) It has an end
4) There is a way to attain release from suffering—namely, by following the Noble Eightfold Path
The Noble Eightfold Path are 8 steps that Buddhist follow that they believe will help them to reach Nirvana. Nirvana suggests many things: the end of suffering, inner peace, and freedom from limitations of the world. When Nirvana is reached it is believed to end karma and rebirth after the present life.
The Noble Eightfold Path is meant to guide Buddhist to 3 goals:
1) Face life objectively
2) To live Kindly
3) To develop inner peace
The 8 steps of the Noble Eightfold Path are as followed:
1) Right understanding -I recognize the impermanence of life, the mechanic of desire, and the cause of suffering.
2) Right intention- My thoughts and motives are pure, not tainted by my emotions and selfish desires.
3) Right speech- I speak honestly and kindly, in positive ways, avoiding lies, exaggeration, harsh words.
4) Right Action- involves the body as natural means of expression, as it refers to deeds that involve bodily actions.
5)Righ livelihood- if your work has a lack of respect for life, then it will be a barrier to progress on a spiritual path.
6)Right Effort-means cultivating and enthusiasm-a positive attitude in a balanced way.
7)Right mindfulness- means being aware of the moment and being focused on the moment.
8)Right concentration-means setting the mind to focus on one particular thing whether it be a person, place, or thing.
2. Describe the three major Buddhist traditions—Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana—and how each tradition developed from the early teachings.
Based on our reading from the University of Phoenix material,”The Theravada school takes its name from its goal of passing on the Buddha’s teachings unchanged. It means “the way (vada) of the elders (thera).” Theravada monks originally passed on the teachings in oral form, but they eventually wrote them down. Theravadan Buddhism traces its rooots to the earliest traditions of Buddhism, beginning with the original Sangha of the Buddha. Today's Theravadan Buddhists consider their tradition to be the only surviving representative of the earliest schools of Buddhism.Theravadan Buddhists accept the earliest collected teachings of the Buddha, the Pail Canon, as the true authoritative Dharma. (Pali was a language used during the Buddha's lifetime.) While the suttas of the Pali Canon are accepted as authentic in every branch of Buddhism, we shall see that other traditions recognize other teachings as well as authentic.