August 8, 2013

Buddhist Pitakas - Types and Eight fold Path of Buddhism - An Overview

The Eightfold Path or the Arya Ashthangmarg of Buddhism:
 1. Right Faith or Beliefs: The knowledge of the four truths which Buddha enunciated in his first sermon.
2. Right Aspiration or Resolve: It requires us to renounce pleasures, to bear no malice and to do no harm to others.
3. Right Speech : It implies that we should abstain from lying, slander, abuse, harsh words and idle talk.
4. Right Action or Conduct: We should refrain from taking what is not given.
5. Right mode of Livelihood: We should abstain from any of the forbidden modes of living.
6. Right Effort: We should strive to suppress the rising of evil conditions, eradicate those that have arisen and in stimulating good conditions.
7. Right Recollection: It requires us to look at the body and the soul in such a way as to remain self-possessed and careful,  overcoming both the hankering and the dejection.
8. Right Contemplation: It means to take the form of four meditations.
By following this path we can put an end to sorrow and suffering and reach salvation, Nirvana, the extinction of all desires.

What are Buddhist Pitakas?

The Buddhist scriptures, known as pitakas are divided into three sections, namely,
  1. the Sutta,
  2. the Vinaya and
  3. the Abhidhamma.

Sutta Pitaka: This is the most important part of the scriptures. It consists of a collection of five religious discourses and sayings of Buddha. The fifth collection of the sutta Tripitaka contains celebrated Jatakas of Buddha's birth stories. The Jatakas belong to a class of literature which foreshadows the great epics of the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.
Vinaya Pitaka : This contains the rules of monastic discipline.

Abhidhamma Pitaka : This contains the philosophical development of the teachings of Buddha.


No comments: