Religion / The Second Noble Truth Of Buddhism

The Second Noble Truth Of Buddhism

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Autor:  anton  24 September 2010
Tags:  Second,  Buddhism
Words: 814   |   Pages: 4
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The Second Noble Truth - “Samudaya"

The Truth of the Origin or the Cause of Suffering

According to the philosophy of Buddhism is the Second Noble Truth : "Samudaya", the truth of the origin or the cause of suffering. Buddhists also believe that the origin of suffering is `attachment'.

The Second Noble Truth invites us to understand the principle, that the origin of suffering is attachment to transient things and the ignorance thereof. Transient things do not only include the physical objects that surround us, but it also encompasses ideas, and, in a greater sense, all objects of our perception. Perhaps it could be said that ignorance is the lack of understanding of how our mind is attached to impermanent things. Some of the reasons for suffering are, desire, passion, pursuit of wealth and prestige, striving for fame and popularity, or in short: craving and grasping. We create our own suffering through our egotistical craving and desires. Because the objects of our attachment are impermanent their loss maybe inevitable and so suffering will follow.

The Second Noble Truth has three aspects of attachment to desires. These three types of desire are the desire for sensual pleasure (kama tanha), the desire to become (bhava tanha) and the desire to get rid of (vibhava tanha).

It is human nature to want more, more of what we like and to have better than what we have. This desire is not just for ourselves but for our children and the people we care about. It is in these desires that we can find the source of our suffering. We crave for the formation of states or realms of being that are not currently happening.

As human beings we believe that the way of happiness is through sensual pleasure. We have five senses which respond to the world and through which we enjoy a lot of pleasure. For example we obtain great pleasure from the taste of food, viewing lovely sights, the feeling of a sea breeze or sexual pleasures. It is said that trying to satisfy our craving for pleasant experiences is like drinking saltwater when thirsty: it only increases our thirst. Even by means of the sixth sense in Buddhism, there is great pleasure to be had in fantasies and mental states of excitement, infatuations and so on. Our technological society extends all types of ways to extend our sensual pleasure, from viewing and listening to DVD’s, CDs, TVs and many other high-tech options. There is always the desire to find the ultimate sensual enjoyment. The more we attach ourselves to this pleasure the more we define ourselves by it and the more grasping we become. This self-identification with pleasure and pleasurable emotions and feelings is the ultimate delusion which causes suffering. Ignorance of understanding why we are unhappy and the way we look at what we perceive as our reality is also a cause of suffering.

Buddhism teaches that objects of attachment also include the idea of a "self" which they believe is a delusion, because they believe there is no abiding self.

According to Buddha, what we call "self" is just an imagined entity, and we are merely a part of the ceaseless becoming of the universe.

This principle is highlighted by the metaphor of Indra's Jeweled Net which is attributed to an ancient Buddhist named Tu-Shun (557-640 B.C.E.). Ti-Shun asks us to envision a vast net that:

[ at each juncture there lies a jewel;

[ each jewel reflects all the other jewels in this cosmic matrix;

[ every jewel represents an individual life form, atom, cell or unit of consciousness;

[ each jewel, in turn, is intrinsically and intimately connected to all the others; and

[ therefore, a change in one gem is reflected in all the others.

Therefore because the Buddha teaches that in this body and mind, there is no independent self, in ignorance or avoidance of this belief and working towards our individual pursuits and goals, attachment and aversion unavoidably flourish.


In conclusion, and as the "Chico Dharma Study Group" findings suggest, “from the root of ignorance grows the tree of craving: attachment, greed, aversion, hatred, envy, jealousy", and the complete complement of all our ignoble feelings. The entire tree of emotional afflictions grows from the root of ignorance and bears the fruit of suffering.”

Ignorance is the underlying cause of suffering, while craving, attachment, aversion, and the rest are the secondary or immediate causes of suffering.

Having identified the causes of suffering, we are now in a position to reduce and eventually eliminate the affliction. Just as identifying the causes of a physical pain puts us in a position to eliminate that pain by eliminating its cause, when we identify the source of mental suffering, we are then able to reduce and eventually remove that suffering by removing its causes - ignorance, attachment, aversion, and so forth.


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