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  • Created by: harriet
  • Created on: 10-04-13 22:44

The Third Noble Truth: Nirodha- "The Cessation of Suffering"

The third noble truth is Nirodha, which literally means 'cessation' and refers to the 'stopping' of Tanha. This is called Nibbana/Nirvana.

We know that a state that is beyond ordinary human experience is essentially ineffable, but buddhists do try to describe Nirvana.

They try to avoid saying anything positive about Nirvana because as soon as a person forms a mental image of it they have limited what cannot be limited. Some Buddhists may use negative description as they are probably more accurate.

Generally Nirvana is described in negative terms, for example;

Tanhakhaya: the extinction of tanha

Nirodha: cessation

Nirvana: the blowing out or extinction

The Deathless: A person who is free from the cycle of death and rebirth - samsara i.e. in a state of Nirvana

The Unconditioned: no longer subject to the chain of conditions which make up the Paticca Samuppada

When it is described in positive terms, the expressions are simply word pictures, metaphors. Examples include

  • The island
  • The shelter/refuge
  • Tranquility, peace and ease
  • Medicine to cure our suffering
  • Brings great joy

It can be described as:

  • Feelings of supreme bliss or enjoyment
  • Knowledge- insight into the true nature of reality
  •  Will - freedom from all bonds and restriction
  • Consciousness - a pure blissful state of consciousness

"rejecting of...craving" -Samyutta Nikaya

The causes of suffering lie in the 5 skandhas, tanha and ignorance

When a person frees themselves from ignorance and sees into the causes of dukkha, wisdon, joy, and peace of mind result. No bad karma is produced and the person who has attained enlightenment is Awakened to the truth.

Nirvana literally means "quenching" or "blowing out"


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