Lord Buddha: Master of Inner Peace and Harmony
TRANSCEND MEMBERS, 10 Oct 2011
Lord Buddha was born in a rich family as Siddhartha Gautama in Nepal. He is said to have lived to be 80 years old covering the years 563-483 B.C. In his early years, he found out that the secret of inner peace and harmony consists of detachment from material things. Thus, he left his family fortunes and went to live in poverty, spending most of his time in meditation and contemplation.
Four Noble Truths & Noble Eightfold Path
In the process, Siddhartha Gautama began to gather quite a number of disciples who were eager to follow his ascetical life. As a result, he developed the concept of the four noble truths and the noble eightfold path. These two elements served as a guideline for his disciples to follow. Later on he became known as the Buddha, which means, the enlightened one. Let us now have a good knowledge of these two stated elements. The Four Noble Truths may be enlisted as follows:
1. Suffering is to be viewed as a part of life. We are constantly faced with it in various degrees from the very first days of our existence. Learning how to accept it with patience willingly enables us to become strong and courageous.
2. Sensuality needs to be brought under full control because it is bound to lead to unhappiness. Anything in life that gives us pleasure temporarily will make it difficult for us to develop eventually inner peace and harmony.
3. Identification seems to be one of our major struggles in an effort to really find who we are in terms of character and personality as well as ability to perform. Today many people tend to carry on the so called Identification Card.
4. Annihilation, which represents the destruction of everything we can imagine, seems to be, quite often, an element that we cannot avoid easily. Hence, we need to be often on the guard with caution.
Soon after, Lord Buddha developed the Noble Eightfold Path, which later inspired a few millions to follow this route. This element deals with basic human rights that could be outlined as follows:
1. Securing Right Understanding: The secret of human relations lies in our ability to develop mutual understanding. This should then make our inner peace and harmony in human relations more possible.
2. Developing Right Thought: Our thought, quite often, represents the seat of judgment. It enables us to form a mind-set, which is bound to do a lot of good when it happens to be positive and constructive.
3. Forming Right Speech: As many ascetical writers and philosophers told us over the centuries that what counts is not really what we say but “how” we say what we need to say. Some tend to call this good diplomacy.
4. Taking Right Action: Very often we are faced with taking an action, which could be beneficial or disastrous. If such an action is beneficial to all people without exception, then we may assume it must be right.
5. Making Right Livelihood: This needs to be done by taking into consideration the welfare of others. We cannot make livelihood at the expense of others, that is, by making people desolate and suffering.
6. Seeking Right Effort: In everything we do we are always expected to make an effort, that is, to do our best to achieve what we want properly and successfully. When we do our best it means we are making our best effort.
7. Enjoying Right Mindfulness: Good and honest people are always expected to be mindful, that means honest and respectful for others. People do expect from us to perform anything that is good and beneficial.
8. Practicing Right Concentration: In every piece of work we do, the more we concentrate on it the more likelihood our piece of work is going to lead to success. The power of concentration is often the source of our success.
If we were to make a careful study of the history of religions that evolved over the past several centuries, we would discover that Buddhism has proved to be very peaceful. Lord Buddha is viewed as the founder of Buddhism. When in conflict with other religions, Buddhists always tend to remain silent and resort to contemplation and meditation, rather than to struggles and wars. This explains why Lord Buddha can be hailed as master of inner peace and harmony.
Charles Mercieca, Ph.D. – President, International Association of Educators for World Peace, Dedicated to United Nations Goals of Peace Education, Environmental Protection, Human Rights & Disarmament.
-Professor Emeritus, Alabama A&M University.
-Hon President & Professor, SBS Swiss Business School, Zurich.
-Member, TRANSCEND-A Network for Peace, Development and Environment.
This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 10 Oct 2011.
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