Questions tagged [suffering]

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35
votes
19answers
4k views

How to explain what Buddhism is?

My mother and I come from a non-Buddhist culture/background/society/country/family. At one point when I had an opportunity to explain to her what Buddhism is, I was doing well (i.e. she was listening ...
8
votes
7answers
2k views

Experiencing physical pain

What advice (or techniques e.g. of meditation) does Buddhism (of any tradition) have for people who experience physical pain (caused by an illness and treated by a doctor)? Or for the people (friends, ...
9
votes
14answers
6k views

Did the Buddha really say that “life is suffering”?

I often see the first noble truth (duḥkha) stated as "life is suffering". I have yet to come across a passage in a Buddhist text which phrases it like this - mostly they don't talk about "life" in ...
36
votes
8answers
10k views

If a buddhist should not kill a mouse living in their home, what justification do they have to rid themselves of a parasite such tapeworms

An extension of this question posted earlier: How not to kill the mouse in my house? Where does one draw the line for which forms of life are ok to destroy, and which ones are not? Is it just a ...
6
votes
8answers
367 views

How can I forget my old girlfriend?

Hello to all of you and thank you for your time in answering the questions here. I have a big problem with my feelings. I have a huge emotional lack, which means I've never moved on with my old ...
12
votes
6answers
558 views

Compassion to friends: stepping in vs. letting them learn on their own

There is a story about how the Buddha will knock on your door if your house is on fire, but he will not kick it down because you have to answer the door yourself. This is analogous to the Four Noble ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

How does one escape suffering when they cannot provide for those they love

Taoism and Buddhism say we should distance our self from suffering and accept life as is if we cannot change it. But what if we have serious clinical depression or cannot provide properly for those we ...
2
votes
3answers
252 views

What is the meaning of *suffering*?

What is the meaning of the word suffering or (pali) dukkha when it is referred to in topics around Dhamma and Vinaya or Buddhism?
2
votes
3answers
151 views

Suffering due to non-self-related preconceived notions in Theravada

According to this answer: However, there is another type of suffering that cannot be fixed with anatta! This type of suffering comes from attachment to forms other than oneself, forms that have ...
5
votes
5answers
941 views

Zen & Dukkha — Is Everything Suffering?

Thich Nhat Hanh seems to deny a major teaching on dukkha/suffering common to both Theravada and Tibetan teachings -- the idea of all-perasive suffering ("the suffering of composite things",...
3
votes
7answers
1k views

When is it love? When is it attachment?

I have this misunderstanding about love and attachment as they relate to one another. It's hard to put in words, so I'll try with some examples first. My understanding is that love is something you ...
1
vote
6answers
288 views

Cessation of suffering is the main goal of Buddhism, but is cessation of suffering the end goal or does Buddhism pursue Joy beyond end of suffering?

I ask the above because Socrates in the Republic has proven that the cessation of suffering is a quietude of the mind, an illusion or a jugglery not real. What we should we aim according to him is not ...
1
vote
4answers
222 views

When would a Buddhist want to attach?

I understand that Buddhism is meant to end sufferings. The Buddhists welcome everything and don't clinging when it's gone. They don't necessary cut existing attachments (knowledge, relationships), but ...
6
votes
11answers
954 views

Rejecting clinging to both pleasure and displeasure

I recently listened to a talk by Ajahn Chah, in which he mentions (@ ~14:20-14:53) that wisdom is found when one clings to neither pleasure nor displeasure. This really created a dilemma in my head ...
3
votes
4answers
236 views

love and caring is suffering

In my point of view everything we love finally ends up with sufferings. love is a root to suffering. But in the society there are plenty of people who lead very happy and non-suffering lives with love....
2
votes
2answers
124 views

Addiction and Suffering

I have experienced minor addictions lately, such as overeating or social media; these topics have been addressed on this site previously. I now have a more general question. I am wondering: which is ...
1
vote
5answers
597 views

Is it possible to be reborn for all eternity?

According to Buddhist teachings, is it possible to continue to reborn and suffer for all eternity? Suppose if a being never attained any merit, never was able to work through its old karma. Would it ...
8
votes
3answers
434 views

Are practical solutions to everyday suffering that contradict Buddhism Upaya or avidya?

If we are caught in the great web of desire and aversion, and are roiling in Samsara, helpful or well meaning advise (to let go, to be in the moment, to inspect the emptiness of reality, to not ...
7
votes
5answers
658 views

Keeping in mind impermanence, suffering and non-self

If one doesn't know the notion of "impermanence, suffering and non-self", can one see it by one's self? I know that I don't need to "force" myself to see impermanence: but do I need to keep in mind "...
5
votes
4answers
311 views

Does buddhism allow for families?

I have studied Buddhism for a few years now, on and off, and this one question has been bugging me for a long time. Please correct me if I am wrong, however, the way that I understand it is that ...
5
votes
4answers
122 views

Does the saṅ­kha­ta­lak­kha­ṇa of dukkha apply to the noble path?

Dukkha is usually clarified as an intrinsic characteristic of everything conditioned and to be as such a direct derivative of the characteristic of impermanence. Does this also apply to the noble ...
4
votes
5answers
154 views

Renunciation and Negative Mysticism (Escaping from ones Dharma)

May All Beings be Truly Happy! Is it possible that one can see that everything they have tried has failed, in a worldly sense, and has brought about suffering for themselves and others: has been ...
4
votes
1answer
931 views

The relation between the three types of dukkha

Dukkha is said to have three types. Can Vipariṇāma-dukkha be analysed in terms of Dukkha-dukkha alone? Is the experience of Saṃkhāra-dukkha nothing more than Vipariṇāma-dukkha?
3
votes
3answers
437 views

Two interpretations of the three levels of suffering, Dukkha Sutta and Tibetan

There's a wrinkle in the teachings about the three levels of suffering. The Pali Canon, in SN 38.14 -- Dukkha Sutta -- has it thus (leaving things uninterpreted for the moment): the suffering of pain ...
3
votes
5answers
351 views

Is there a kind of consulting service in Buddhism?

Similarly to psychotherapy counselling/consulting service, is there an equivalent form in Buddhism, in that the counselor is trained in Buddhism instead of clinical psychology? I haven't heard of such ...
3
votes
3answers
136 views

Should we care about what others think?

Should we care about what others think? If so, to what level? (Most of the time, those thoughts creates suffering).
3
votes
5answers
257 views

Are the physicists suffering?

Physicists are scientist who study the reality and draw conclusions about it scientifically. After studying what Buddha said it appears to me that Physicists are trapped in a wrong world. They believe ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

Pure Land Schools' version of the Three (or Four) Marks of Existence

I'd be grateful for references to some of the major Pure Land schools' versions of the Three (or Four) Marks (Seals) of Existence: Impermanence (anicca) Suffering (dukkha) No-self (anattā) ...
2
votes
5answers
190 views

11 year old daughter suffocated, was dead and was resuscitated now in a state of reduced concsciousness

I am a father of a now 13 year old daughter. She was born with the genetic disorder Achondroplasie (Dwarfism, "small people"). At the age of 11 we decided that she should undergo leg-extension surgery....
2
votes
2answers
83 views

Is buddha nature active?

Is Buddha nature active or passive? Would anyone say that enlightenment means we can suffer (frustration) in an active way?
2
votes
3answers
226 views

Is suffering caused by oneself, others, by both, or spontaneous?

According to popular belief of Karma, suffering is caused by oneself. I would like to know: Is one's own suffering caused by oneself? Is one's own suffering caused by others? Is one's own ...
2
votes
5answers
177 views

How can Buddhism help me to get rid of a suffering due to a disease?

I came to know about Buddhism very late in my life. It is the time for me to relearn the fundamentals of life. But I struggle with everyday activity. I lack energy. In fact I have a diabetes. My past ...
2
votes
7answers
436 views

How can one avoid the suffering after getting cheated?

Today I suffered severe disappointment because I thought I was cheated some amount of money. I couldn't complain to anyone because I had no proof. And I suspect those who cheated me will also cheat ...
1
vote
3answers
80 views

“true love”, compassion and suffering

According to Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, "true love" has four elements: Loving kindness: this produces a lot of joy and happiness. Compassion: it makes us and the other people suffer less. Joy: "If ...
0
votes
11answers
4k views

What is the Buddhist perspective on child abuse?

Suppose a father is abusing his 3 year old child. As a consequence, the child is suffering. Who is the cause of the child's suffering?