- Slides: 66
The Human Condition What is the human condition ? Buddhism’s answer : Unenlightened human beings are caught in a cycle of Suffering but there is a way out.
Homework • What do we mean by the human condition ? 5 KU • How do Buddhists see the human condition 10 KU
Introduction to Buddhism What do you know about Buddhism ? With your partner / group , make a list of Buddhist beliefs / facts about Buddhism
Buddhism - Key Beliefs The Human Condition • Started by Siddhartha Guatama who was a Hindu who lived more than 2, 500 years ago ( thus Buddhism influenced by Hindu philosophy – karma , Brahman, trimurti -Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva - caste system etc) • Buddha- means enlightened one i. e. Siddhartha but also refers to Buddha nature in all beings. Self is a temporary arising and the belief that it is a permanent entity is the cause of all suffering. Enlightenment is the realisation that the self is merely a collection of aggregates ( senses, memory, perception, form, consciousness ) and not true nature which is all potentiality. The Buddha talked of emptiness as true reality – not as a negative void but as a luminous awareness brimming with all potentiality
Buddhism • Key Beliefs : all beings are on wheel of life – samsara due to their kamma – all are reborn into one of six realms. All beings in these realms are propelled by the three poisons – desire, ignorance , hatred kamma – law of action - interdependent origination - everything depends upon everything else - no need for creator God
Buddhism : Key Beliefs Three marks of existence- annica- impermanence, annata- no self , dukkha - suffering Four noble truths – all life is suffering , the cause of suffering is desire, ignorance, hatred but there can be an end to it – following the eight fold path
Buddhism Faith is not as prominent in the Buddhist tradition as in some others ( although it is a necessary thing ) The Buddha taught that experience and critical enquiry were crucial in the enlightenment process. He said – don’t believe what I say – experience it for yourself
Enlightenment can be for oneself or for the benefit of all beings – the Bodhisattva ideal found in the Mahayana tradition
The Life of the Buddha
Learning Intentions Have an understanding of the life of the Buddha especially how the main aspects of his life affected his teachings : Birth and life in the palace Four signs( sights) and renunciation Wandering and searching Enlightenment and teaching Death and paranirvana
The Life of the Buddha Siddhartha Gautama was the person who started Buddhism and is known by Buddhists as the Buddha. This can refer to this individual and also to the potential of enlightenment mind in all beings. You are going to view a video on his life and take notes. You should start by writing down the two meanings of Buddha.
Life of the Buddha You should ensure you are clear about the stages of his life : Birth and life in the palace Four signs and renunciation Wandering and searching Enlightenment and teaching Death and paranirvana
Buddhism There are three ( some would say two ) branches of Buddhism – Therevada (sometimes known as Hinayana)- foundation / smaller / lesser vehicle Mahayana -greater vehicle Vajrayana -diamond vehicle( part of Mahayana tradition)
Life of the Buddha Exam Question 1. Explain how the Four Sights led the Buddha to ‘cut down the forest of desires’ in his own Life. 5 KU
Life of the Buddha Exam Question 2. Describe how desire and temptation played a part in the Buddha’s life as he progressed towards enlightenment 5 KU
The Teachings of the Buddha
Targets Have an understanding of the life of the Buddha and how he came to an understanding of his Teachings Outline the Three Universal Truths/ Three Conditioned Marks of Existence Consider whether you think they are true or not Outline the Four Noble Truths Consider whether you think they are true or not Outline and discuss the Eight fold path
The Teachings of the Buddha • Using the textbook, support material and internet, with your group you are going to find out information about the teachings of the Buddha. Each group will focus on one area You are going to report back to the class so you should consider how you are going to present your findings ( a powerpoint, poster, presentation of a paper, talk etc ): This will be done for Wed 9 th of Sept
Three Conditioned Marks of Existence Three Universal Truths Copy out the Three Universal Truths 1. Anicca – everything changes 2. Anatta –no permanent self 3. Dukkha – unsatisfactory nature of life as suffering is at the base. Everything is impermanent. Nothing is lasting. How far do you agree / disagree that this is how life is ?
Anicca Everything is impermanent , everything is subject to change Can you think of anything which is not ? The lack of understanding of impermanence which leads us to suffer is also an aspect of anicca You will examine A number of texts which illustrate Anicca http: //www. youtube. com/watch? v=dvg. Zkm 1 x. WPE
Anicca Often change is a positive thing. If things remain the same they can become stagnant. Can you think of any positive examples of change ? How well do you understand anicca. ? Scale of 1 -5. Now explain it your neighbour who will mark you on a scale of 1 -5.
Dukkha • Life is unsatisfactory due to impermanence • Suffering is at the heart of life – whether it is profound or mundane • Dukkha can be seen to be the unsatisfactoriness of life caused by suffering. • Even happiness is impermanent. Often within happiness lie the seeds of unhappiness. Can you think of examples where this is true ?
Dukkha The Buddha described three kinds of suffering. 1. All pervasive suffering which suggests that life in general is less than satisfactory- it is frustrating and imperfect at times 2. The suffering of change – happy circumstances cannot last as everything is impermanent. Things that we are attached to get broken and lost 3. The suffering of suffering when we experience actual pain and suffer experiences that we would rather not. Can you give examples of each kind of suffering ? •
How well do you understand dukkha. ? Scale of 1 -5. Now explain it your neighbour who will mark you on a scale of 1 -5.
Anatta • There is no such thing as a permanent self. • Look at a person : they start life as a baby become a child, teenager then become an adult then enter into old age. Where is the permanent self ?
The Five Skandhas K&U • Body • Feelings and Sensations • Perceptions • Mental Formations • Consciousness This is considered by Buddhists to be what The ‘self’ is made up of – It is a collection of parts as opposed to an independent entity Discuss with your group and write down your thoughts about this.
The Five Skandhas K&U There is no such thing as an independent entity – everything is dependent upon everything else give an example and explain e. g. what is a piece of paper dependent on?
No permanent self Look below at what is considered to be a way , via analysis of establishing that there is no such thing as a self existing thing. It was taught by Gautama that the self is something imputed upon as opposed to something inherent There is no phenomenon which is the same as its parts There is no phenomenon which is different from its parts There is no phenomenon which is inherently dependant upon its parts There is no phenomenon where its parts are dependant on it - interdependency There is no phenomenon which is merely the collection of its parts There is no phenomenon which possesses its parts There is no phenomenon which is merely the physical form Guatama used the metaphor of a chariot to discuss the idea of anatta. The chariot was a metaphor for the soul or atman in Hinduism. In your groups , try to work through each of these analyses to see if you can understand what he meant by taking a chariot as the example. If you have understood this example , try it with any object you can think
Relative and Ultimate Truth What is the difference between ultimate truth and relative truth ? Discuss Relative – not complete how we see it as we know it dependant upon conditions perception Subjective-own perception Objective- collective truth Ultimate – indisputable final not dependant upon conditions The Buddha taught that there was no such thing as a self. Neither was there no self. The self was inherently empty of existence. It was relatively true but not ultimately true. Ultimately we have Buddha nature – the self arises from this but is unaware of its true nature because it is caught in delusion.
Postscript by Seamus Heaney http: //www. rte. ie/archives/20 13/0830/471296 -seamusheaney-postscript/
Two methods of attainment in Buddhism • Logical and analytical E. g. 7 fold analysis Experiential E. g. Six elements meditation
How well do you understand anatta. ? Scale of 1 -5. Now go into groups of three Each of you should take 1 of the marks The others will mark you on a scale of 1 -5.
Anatta Exam Question Give a full description of what Buddhists understand by anatta 4 KU
Teachings of the Buddha • I have shown the path toward liberation; whether you take it or not is entirely up to you – the Buddha
Life of the Buddha Exam Question 3. Discuss the effects of desire on humans according to the teachings of the Buddha 3 AE
Life of the Buddha Exam Question 6. Describe the role of the Buddha in revealing the dhamma 4 KU
Anicca Exam Question “ Dried empty gourds thrown away ” a. This is an example of anicca one of the three Marks of Existence. Give a full description of what Buddhists understand by anicca 4 KU b. Explain the consequences for Buddhists of not accepting anicca 4 AE c. Give a full description of what Buddhists understand by anatta 4 KU
The Three Conditioned Marks of existence Exam Questions 1. Briefly describe the other two marks of existence 4 KU 2. Explain the relationship between anatta and samsara 5 AE 3. Discuss what Buddhists understand by dukkha 5 AE
The Three Conditioned Marks of existence Exam Question 4. “ It is a Buddhist’s aim to cultivate peace, bliss and well being in him/herself. ” Discuss the extent to which belief in anatta helps a Buddhist to achieve this aim. 15 6 KU 9 AE
The Three Conditioned Marks of existence Exam Question Intro – ref to question Dev – anatta- explain – 5 skandhas etc. Mention other marks Buddhist’s aim – explain nibbana ( 6 marks ) How does anatta help this ? - acceptance of truth of anatta leads to peace. Non acceptance unenlightened leads to suffering- attachment, craving etc. Mention not only about achieving peace for oneself – not possible if other living creatures are immersed in suffering etc. Remember to add in a source and discuss it. e. g. Even well-decked royal chariots wear away; And the body too falls into decay Dhammaphada 151 Crucial for enlightenment that this concept is understood ( 9 marks) Conclusion - a brief summing up of points. This question not really asking you for your opinion – rather to show your understanding between concepts – in this case- anatta and nibbana
Life of the Buddha Exam Question 4. ‘ The Great of the past only show the way ’ Discuss the role of the Buddha which is suggested by this statement 7 AE
Life of the Buddha Exam Question 5. “ The three jewels of Buddhism are necessary to overcome selfish cravings “ Outline three jewels of Buddhism 6 KU
Dependent Origination : cause and effect Buddha taught that everything that exists is due to something that went before. Karma ie the law of cause and effect determines what happens on the wheel of life Clearly things have an existence but not a permanent one as they come into being and then cease. Thus things can be said to exist relatively but not ultimately • Give examples of where you can see this is true • Is this is true of all things ?
The Wheel of Life, Death, Rebirth
The Wheel of Life, death, rebirth The Buddha taught all sentient are caught on the wheel of existencesamsara or mara’s wheel which is divided into six realms. Examine the diagram of the wheel of life and discuss with your group what you think it suggests about existence
Six Classes of Sentient Beings • Can you think how each of these states could be considered to be states of mind ?
Samsara • CYCLICAL EXISTENCE • BEGINNINGLESS BEGINNING • IMPERMANENT • REBIRTH IS DEPENDENT ON YOUR ACTIONS, CAUSES AND CONDITIONS (KAMMA)
The six realms • For the realm you are in – ask yourself two questions : • How did you get here? • How will you get to leave ?
• Gods (pride ) Animals ( ignorance) • Asuras (jealousy) Hungry ghosts ( desire) • Humans (desire) Hell beings ( hatred)
The Three Poisons • Greed / Desire/ Craving –rooster – • Hatred - snake • Ignorance/ Delusion – pig Each of these are depicted in a circle biting the tail of the one in front. Why do you think they do this ? Why do you think they are called the three poisons ? Give examples of how each of these can lead to harmful consequences.
The Three Poisons • Tanha – 3 root poisons are all tanha. Tanha is desire or craving that is valued too highly or is directed wrongly. Some desires are positive e. g. wanting the best for someone else or the desire for enlightenment. This kind of desire is described as Chanda to distinguish it from harmful desires. ( second of noble truths ) • Avijja – ignorance of the reality of how things truly are. This ignorance leads to desire – suffering – samsara • Although these two are 2 of the 3 poisons, they underpin all the three poisons.
• Next to the central circle is a concentric band divided along two halves. One is colored softly and radiantly, while the other is black. The darker portion shows individuals who have chosen the path of darkness and thus descend into gloomy depths. The glowing path, however, is the one taken by those following the righteous way, attaining spiritual ascension. Hence it shows mortals rising towards greater spiritual heights.
The twelve links or nidanas • Look at each of these in your workbook and discuss with your group how these contribute to the process of dependent arising. • Read through • Discuss how they each affect the other • Explain to each other and the class • Write notes
The twelve links or nidanas • • • Ignorance -blind man Kammic formations- potter at a wheel Consciousness-monkey up a tree Name and form- 2 travellers in a boat Sensations – an empty house Contact –woman and man embracing Feeling- man with an arrow in his eye Craving – person drinking alcohol Attachment – monkey grasping fruit Being (becoming) - pregnant woman Birth-a woman giving birth Ageing and dying- man carrying a corpse
The twelve links or nidanas • Everything depends upon everything else • - the links are all inter related, interdependent In a circle going round and round endlessly
The Wheel of Life Check out the following website for an excellent article on the wheel of life • http: //www. exoticindiaart. com/article/wheel oflife/
Teachings of the Buddha The Four Noble Truths All life is suffering DUKKHA -leading to samsara( HUMAN CONDITION), The cause of suffering is our own minds which chase after experiences which are not permanent and cling to them- craving/ TANHA (CAUSE OF HUMAN CONDITION) There can be cessation of suffering NIBBANA( GOAL) Follow the noble eight fold path – (MEANS)
Four Noble Truths 1. All Life is suffering Dukkha
The Four Noble Truths 2. The basis of all suffering is our deluded mind which craves and desires – tanha - the result of ignorance of the impermanence of things/ failure to live in accordance with how things are. Suffering caused by desire samudaya • Discuss with your group or neighbour what you think the reasons for suffering are. Can you think of examples where it is true that our minds create suffering ? Write down your thoughts.
Four Noble Truths 3. If one truly realises the truth of how things actually are, there can be cessation of suffering – nibbana. By stopping desire, suffering stops – nirodha which leads to nibbana. • • • Do you think this is an accurate statement of the nature of suffering ? Discuss if you think it is possible for suffering to cease if people can bring their own minds under control. Write down your thoughts. Spend a few moments simply observing what is going on in your own mind at this moment. Try and do this exercise over the coming week at various times e. g. in class , at home etc. Simply watch what your own mind is doing.
Four Noble Truths 4. Follow the noble eight fold path magga
The Teachings of the Buddha • • Imagine you are working for a Buddhist organisation You are now going to create a leaflet which outlines the main teachings of the Buddha You must include : • • • Information on Siddhartha Guatama The Three Universal Truths The Four Noble Truths The Eight fold path Some pictures if possible • You should use the appropriate textbooks , the workbook and the internet if it is available Your teacher will show you some examples to give you an idea of how to set it out. You should make notes in your jotter then set it out on A 4 paper. . You will do this in class and at home. You may do this on computer or write it by hand. •