Friday, March 16, 2012

Pagan Blog Project - F is for Four Noble Truths

Sekmet's Day
Galactic 25
Dreamspell - Blue Overtone Hand (5 Manik) - Kin 187
Mayan Tzolk'in - 10 Ahau (Yellow Planetary Sun) - Kin 140
Mayan Ha'ab - 8 Kumku

Disclaimer: Buddhism is not technically a pagan religion. However, if you define pagan religion as a religion not belonging under Christianity, Judaism, or Islam, Buddhism would be included. 

Dharma wheel

The four noble truths are one of the central teachings of Buddhism, no matter what sect or tradition.

1. Suffering exists.
From the time that we are born to the time that we die, we suffer. Sometimes suffering can be beneficial (think of good stress, or eustress). In addition to physical discomfort, we experience emotional discomfort such as not getting what we want, being separated from what we like, and encountering what we dislike.

2. Suffering arises from attachment to desires.
Ever hear of retail therapy? We shop for clothes or shoes because we feel bad or upset about something. When that shirt is no longer new, we are back to feeling empty. Same principle applies to emotional eating (comfort food). Take these analogies and apply them to life in general. Start thinking about why you are upset and what you do to relieve the feeling. We control our own suffering; it is not caused by the devil or original sin.

3. Suffering ceases when attachment to desires ceases.
No need for a savior or ransom sacrifice. Just as we control our suffering, we also control the ending of our suffering. Realizing that we harbor attachments is the first step to letting them go. My son's father and I have not been together since my son was born. Every time I had to call him, I would get so upset. It was always a stressful conversation. Once I started practicing Buddhism, I realized that I was attached to the idea of Baby Daddy being an active part in my son's life. I let this idea go and saw him for who he was and that I could not change him. I can only change myself. Now, conversations are markedly more pleasant for me.

4. Cease attachments to desires by practicing the eight-fold path:

  • right view
  • right intention
  • right speech
  • right livelihood
  • right effort
  • right mindfulness
  • right concentration

One does not have to master right view before moving to right intention. Rather, the eight-fold path is to be practice together. Further explanation of the 4th noble truth is a topic for another post.


  1. Awesome post and very informative! I've never read anything about Buddhism before. I guess I should add it to my list as the 4 Noble Truths has intrigued me.

    1. I've been neglecting the Buddhist part of my path. Since we have 2 posts per letters, I'll try to do one on Buddhism and one on (generic) Paganism. :)

  2. LMAO I love the word "Generic"! p.s. Have you checked out Pagan-Place yet? Great group of folks there! :)