Buddhism and the Nature of Suffering

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What is suffering in Buddhism?

The Four noble Truths as preached by the Buddha alludes to that fact that

1) There is suffering.

2) Suffering has a cause.

3) Suffering has an end.

4) There is a cause that can end suffering.

After years of preaching this fundamental of existence, he went to preach the higher Dharma of Emptiness. He said that the Noble Truth is void; it is emptiness at its very root. This seemed to contradict his earlier teachings. Now he said there is no suffering, there is no cause of suffering,
there is no cessation of suffering and then there is no path.

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To explain this, he used the example of reflection. There is a reflection in the beginning. The mind is that which reflects a world that is contained by the four noble Truths. As we work our way to the last noble Truth, towards the cause that ends suffering, the reflection is lost. This means that without the reflection the ability to reflect is also lost. There is a merger of the reflective surface and reflection. They become one. This is the stage of Enlightenment. There is no mind that could reflect the world within. You see things as they are without distortion, perfect.

Awareness ends confusion

When this ability to witness emerges, wisdom becomes perfect. Confusion and contortions vanish because there is no reflective mind that introduces the distortion. The Path and Fruit become one. The distortions of the reflective surface, the mind, is the surface itself. Greed, Laziness, Laxity, Hatred, Ignorance which constitutes the average mind is that surface on which the world appears.

When the mind dissolves; greed is replaced by charity, Patience replaces Hatred, Wisdom replaces Ignorance, and so on. All these need not be cultivated through mere practice. It shall automatically manifest as the cause of suffering disappears through the right understanding and deliberation, by implementing the Path. When this happens the Path merges into no-path. Emptiness of all that is, is realized.

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