THE PATH TO END SUFFERINGTHE EIGHTFOLD PATH IS THE BEST
ARYAN TRUTHS AMONG TRUTHS
FOLLOW THIS PATH FOR PURITY
FOLLOWING THIS PATH YOU CAN PUT
AN END TO SUFFERING,
YOU MUST EXERT YOURSELVES
Dhammapada - (Verses. 173, 274, 275, 276,)
1. “The best of paths is the Eightfold Path. The best of truths are the four Noble truths. Non attachment is the best of states. The best of bipeds is the Seeing One.
2. This is the only Way. There is none other for the purity of vision. Do follow this path. This is the bewilderment of Mara.
3. Entering upon that path, you will make an end of pain. Having learnt the removal of thorns, have I taught you the path?
4. Striving should be done by yourselves; the Thathagatas are only teachers. The meditative ones, who enter the way, are delivered from the bonds of Mara.
Enter this path, no other’s there for purity of insight, enter upon then this path bemusing Mara utterly.”
While residing at the Jetavana Monastery, the Buddha and 500 monks, after journeying through the country returned to the monastery after his preaching tours. Then some bhikkhus were discussing the smooth or rough state of the paths they had trod. The Buddha perceiving that they were ripe for Arahatship, went to the hall of Dhamma, and seating himself in his seat inquired about the present discussion. The Buddha remarked that those paths were irrelevant to their emancipation and advised them to follow the Eightfold Path. The Buddha explained that “This is the path. This path has been revelled by me. There is no other for the achievement of clarity of insight. You must follow this path. You will reach the termination of suffering”.
The Eight Fold Path
The Eight Fold path is the Middle Way discovered by the the Buddha for the realisation of Nibbana. It consists of:
right understandings (samma ditthi)
Right thoughts (samkappa)
Right speech (samma vaca)
Right action (samma kammanta)
Right livelihood (samma ajiva)
Right effort ((samma vayama)
Right mindfulness (samma sati)
Right concentration (samma samadi)
This is the unique path of Enlightenment. These eight factors are the eight mental states found in the supramundane consciousness which has Nibbana for its object.
“Eso va maggam natthi anno dassanassa visuddhiya”
“There is no other path for purity of vision than this one.” Those who travel along the path, indicated by the Buddha to reach purity of vision, have to practice the technique of meditation by which purity of vision is achievable.
A truth seeker attains this stage through seven stages. In consequence, this process is characterized as “Sapta Visuddhi,” (seven stages of purity)
The seven stages of purity are:
1. Sila visuddhi (purity of morals)
2. Citta vissudi (purity of mind)
3. Ditthi vissudi (purity of views)
4. Knkavitarana vissudhi (purity of the conquest of doubts)
5. Maggamagga nanadasana vissudhi (putity of knowledge and insight into the right and wrong path)
6. Patipada nanadassana visuddhi (purity of knowledge and insight into progress)
7. Nanadassana vissuddhi (purity of knowledge and insight into the noble path)