Life is full of suffering. That is the universal truth of Buddhism. There is nothing permanent in life is another truth that Buddha teaches. But if life is full of suffering and there is nothing permanent in life, then what is the point of living? What is the meaning of life?
Life and Suffering
According to the Four Noble Truths, life is full of suffering. We suffer because we live. Growth, love, friends, family and the things that happen to us bring both joy and pain. The things that seem to be joyous causes us to feel pain as well because they are all ephemeral.
Suffering is brought about by our DESIRES. Sentient beings think and therefore want. Because of our ability to understand life, we tend to hunger for bigger and bigger things. We never feel satieted. The more money we have, the more we want to have even more money. When we find someone to love, we try to possess them and even control them. And because of all these desire we end up in misery.
Life does not mean we will forever suffer. We have the ability to simplify our lifes. By lessening things that we don’t need we find more meaning in our lifes. We cultivate kindness and compassion. We make our connections with others better.
To find the true meaning of life, we must find a way to release ourselves from the cycle of pain and suffering. Letting go of desire helps us achieve happiness and enlightenment.
The True Meaning of Life
A lot of people would ask “If I no longer desire anything, then what is the point of living?”.
The point of living is simple, to cleanse and purify us in order to achieve full enlightenment. Unless we truly know sufferiing, we cannot full understand compassion. Unless we have felt pain and loss, we cannot truly be kind. We can be kind when we are never hurt but it not similar to compassion that comes from the heart that has once felt misery.
The true meaning of life is helping others achieve freedom from suffering. The true meaning of joy is compassion. The goal in life is to assist others to realize their full potential. The meaning of life it to grow into a kind and caring soul who is selfless and understanding.
Simplifying Buddha’s Teachings
Buddha had taught many lessons. He wanted people to reach enlightenment. He was born into the life that most dream about but he left it all because he knew that that was not the essense of life. He lived and traveled in order to spread his wisdom.
Among his many teachings were the Four Noble Truths, The Eightfold Path, the Three Universal Truths and the Three Jewels of Buddhism. These are the core of what Buddha had shared to his followers. But to simplify Buddha’s knowledge, it can be summed up to a few words.
1. Life is full of suffering but we can be from it if we leave desire behind.
2. Living in the Right Path allows us to achieve Enlightenment
3. Life is impermanent, has suffering and therefore we need to understand that we cannot claim anything in this life.
4. We need to be compassionate and aid other in their journey towards enlightenment
Using Buddhism in Our Current Times
Buddhism has been said to be the religion and philosophy that can be used in the modern times. It goes with science and accepts knowledge. It also tries to teach us to learn from the past. Buddhism is a way of life that we can use in order to simply our current busy and hectic life and find peace and true happiness.
The world now is very materialistic. We are bombarded by media to acquire things in order to be happy. But Buddhism teaches us to do away with all that. It also teaches us that we need not cling onto anyone for happiness. Things and people disappear.
Buddhism teaches us to be simple despite the glory that most seek in the times were social media reign. Buddhism teaches us kindness, when ridicule and critism is prevalent.
The Simple Life
Live kindly. Live compassionately. Live without desire and be happy. That is the true meanig of life in Buddhism.