To achieve nirvana
is to attain a supreme state of mind, from a mind
of defilement to one of purity, from duality to
the absolute, from conditioned to the
unconditioned, from a mundane being to the Holy
One, to be forever freed from all suffering and
abide in bliss.
Fourth Noble Truth: The
The last of the
Four Noble Truths is the Path: the path to
cessation of suffering, the way to nirvana. The
Buddha Dharma is meant to be put into actual
practice and not just be a theoretical study. So
understanding how to traverse the Path is very
important. The Noble Eightfold Path will take us
from samsara to liberation, making nirvana a
reality, not a speculation.
Eightfold Path is not the only Path. There are
also the Twelvefold Causal Chain and the Six
Paramitas, all very important practices that lead
to nirvana and Buddhahood. However, among these
methods, the Eightfold Path is the most
fundamental of all.
The word "noble"
can also be translated as "holy", "of the Sages",
"righteous", etc. It is a Path by which we can
purify ourselves of the Three Poisons and reach
Eightfold Path comprises of the following: Right
Understanding, Right Thought, Right Speech, Right
Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right
Mindfulness, and Right Samadhi. Together they can
be viewed as sequential steps in our practice, but
each step also stands on its own as an important
aspect of a well-rounded practice.
We have briefly
explained the Four Noble Truths. The Four Noble
Truths also follow the Principle of Causality: the
first Truth, Suffering, is the consequence of
delusion. The second Truth, Causes of Suffering,
explains the causes that lead to suffering. They
are the cause and consequence of mundane
existence. The third Truth, Nirvana, is the
consequence of enlightenment. And the fourth
Truth, the Path, is the cause leading to nirvana.
They are the cause and consequence of noble,
liberated existence. By following the Eightfold
Path, everyone can achieve liberation.