The Basic Buddhist Teachings

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Explain the basic Buddhist teachings including the Three Marks of Reality, the Four Noble Truths, and the Noble Eightfold Path. The Three Marks of Reality denote the nature of human existence: the reality of suffering (which does not mean the presence of sorrow, but rather the existence of a constantly-changing world where neither extreme happiness nor misery is stable); the impermanent nature of all things, including human existence; and finally egolessness or the notion that there is no stable, human self (O'Brien, 2012, Three Marks). The Three Marks of Reality relate directly to the Four Noble Truths, the first tenant of which is that there is suffering in the world, and the second of which is that there is a cause of suffering: suffering caused by the false conception that there is a stable human ego. The third noble truth is that there is an end to suffering, and the fourth is that the end to suffering can be achieved by following the Eightfold Path (O'Brien, 2012, Four Noble Truths). The Eightfold Path is divided into three basic sections: that of wisdom, ethical conduct, and mental discipline. Right view and right intention means understanding what the Buddha taught and striving to follow the path for the right reasons. Right speech, action, and livelihood mean acting in a beneficial manner towards others. Right effort, mindfulness and concentration require the practitioner to discipline him or herself with meditation (O'Brien, 2012, Eightfold Path). Amongst all

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