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Essay/Term paper: Budddhism

Essay, term paper, research paper:  Religion

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In the early parts of my life, I learned about all of the laws that restrict our actions,
as practitioners of Buddhism. I was educated about the four basic truths that all Buddhists
believe. The four basic truths are Dukkha, Samudaya, Nirodha, and Marga (Anderson
24). Dukkha, or its meaning in English, suffering, tells of all the frustration in life. In
order to find the end of suffering, I found that one must review the purpose for the
suffering to being in one"s life (Harvey 49). the second holy truth, Samudaya deals with
the origin of suffering. In my studies and from what material I was instructed, I learnedin
order to deal with suffering one must find out its cause in their life. After one has found
the cause, then we can begin to do something about it ( "Four Noble Truths Part I" 3).
Nirodha, the third truth, is the extinction of suffering. To be able to end the sufferingone
must think that the suffering can end and have confidence in attaining the end of suffering
( "Four Noble Truths Part I" 5/6). Marga, or the fourth noble truth is also known as the
eight-fold path. Avoiding indulgences in pleasure and temptation are the ways to walk
down this path ( "Four Noble Truths Part II" 3). As I was instructed on the eight-fold
path I learned that in order to attain the end of suffering I needed to have all of the "right"
pieces of the puzzle. These are right understanding, thought, speech, action, livelihook,
effort, mindfulness, and concentration ("Buddhist Teachings" 1).
In my religion we have a code of ethics that tells our followers to avoid stealing,
lying, killing all living organisms, committing improper sexual activity, and destructive
occupations (Anderson 26/27). the five governing precepts explain more in depth about
the code of ethics. The first precpt says to refrain form taking life away from all that are
breathing (Harvey 202). I and many other followers are vegetarians because of this
precept. In the second precept stealing is prohibited. Improper sexual activity is covered
in the third precept. In it, it tells us that sexual activity is only to be used in order to
conceive children. Polygamy, adultery, and incest are also forbidden in this precept.
Lying, or as the fourth precept calls it, false speech is also forbidden (Harvey 206). The
fifth precept covers alcohol and improper drug use. It is said that if one breaks this
precept that person is more likely to break any or all of the previous precepts (Harvey
In my family we go by the Buddhist values and traditions. Parents have special
duties that they have to do for their children. My parents trained me to my father"s
profession, found a suitable marriage for myself, and they gave me my inheritance at the
time that they felt was suitable (Harvey 213). As their child, I also had duties for my
parents, but only when I grew old enough to take responsibility for them. My duties
included to keep the family name or lineage, the tradition in the family, to be worthy of my
heritage, and to give alms on their behalf when they die (Harvey 213). Marriages are
arranged by the parents because of the thought that because the parents have more
experience in life and can pick a better mate for their child. Even though the parents
arrange thethe marriages, each person of the impending marriage has the choice to either
agree to the marriage or to say no and not marry that person (Penney 46). Weddings take
place in the bride"s home. Most are usually performed by a male in the family. The two
people getting married exchange rings and the thumbs of both right hands are tied
together. It is a symbol of being tyed together forever as husband and wife. The
ceremony is then ended with a promise of respect, love and faithfulness. After the
wedding, celebrations go on for days (Penney 46). When a person dies in our family, we
either go through on or the other way of putting the dead to rest. It is not a sad event
because of our belief in rebirth. A monk will come and give a talk about the after death.
The five precepts and three Jewels are repeated. The body is usually cremated in this
ceremony(Penney 46/47). Another method of putting the dead to rest is to keep it around
for a couple of days and after proper rituals are performed, then the body is carried to a
certain area where it is left for the scavenger animals(Anderson 150). 

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