Religous studies - Short course

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Three Universal Truths

1. Anicca - All things are constantly changing - nothing is fixed.

2. Anatta - There is no permanent self.

3. Dukkha - Means "suffering" in the sense that everything is changing.

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Four Noble Truths

1. All life is suffering - Dukkha

2. The origin of suffering is craving

3. There is an end of suffering

4. The way to stop suffering is to follow the eightfold path

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The Eightfold Path

The eightfold path deals with the three aspects of the Buddhist life: wisdom, morality and meditation .

1. Right View - to have a right understanding about the nature of life

2. Right Intention - Right intention for following the Buddhist path and for all actions

3. Right Speech - Buddhist should avoid speech that cause harm e.g. lying and gossiping

4. Right Action - The precepts that indicate what constitutes right actions are the five moral precepts

5. Right Livelihood - A Buddhist should earn a living in a way that does not break any of the other Buddhist teachings

6. Right Effort - A Buddhist should make a conscious effort to rid his mind all of negative thoughts

7. Right Mindfulness - Buddhists have to become more aware of themselves and everything around them

8. Right Concentration - Buddhists try and cultivate Right Concentration in order to aid there concentration

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The Three Refuges

A Buddhist takes refuges in three things before being admitted to Sangha (Buddhist Community). They are called refuges because they are a place of safety and it means a Buddhist is putting his energies into the right things. They are:

The Buddha

The Dharma - all the teachings of the Buddha

The Sangha - the Buddhist Community

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The Five Moral Precepts

there are five moral precepts that all Buddhists observe. They are not absolute rules but guidelines for how to behave in a way that develops good karma.

1. I will try not to take life - Against harming any living thing including animals

2. I will try not to take what isn't given - not just physical objects and stealing, but includes time or a persons sense of worth or self - esteem

3. I will try no to use wrong speech - a Buddhist should avoid lying ,gossip, slander, harsh speech and idle chatter

4. I will try not to misuse senses - a general precept about overindulgence including food and drink, also includes sex.

5. I will try not to take drugs and alcohol which will cloud the mind - Buddhists can drink alcohol, but they should not use it as a way of escaping reality

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Nirvana - is the state of peace achieved when the fires of greed, hatred and ignorance are extinguished, it literally means to see things as they rally are

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