Article

Four Noble Truths

Carol Anderson

in Buddhism

ISBN: 9780195393521
Published online March 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780195393521-0054
Four Noble Truths

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The teaching commonly called the “four noble truths” is the most widely known teaching of the historical Buddha who lived and taught during the 5th century bce in northern India. The four words that comprise the four truths—Sanskrit duḥkha and Pāli dukkha (“pain”), samudaya (“arising”), nirodha (“ending”), and mārga/magga (“path”) or dukkhanirodhagāminī paṭipadā (“way leading to the ending of pain”)—are recorded in Pāli and Sanskrit in the different Buddhist canons, and the literary traditions have been very consistent in how they remember them. They are explained in the “Sutta on the Turning of the Dhamma Wheel” (Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta). Despite the widespread awareness of the four truths, the complexities associated with this teaching are not commonly understood. Many of the technical questions surrounding the teaching discussed in this bibliography are significant when compared to early scholarship on it of 19th and early 20th centuries.

Article.  4970 words. 

Subjects: Buddhism ; Tibetan Buddhism ; Zen Buddhism

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