Yun Hwa Sangha

The Four Noble Truths

6,435. January 21, 2010.  Lotus Buddhist Monastery 

Most of the time people want to get something, depend on something or believe in something. When people want something, sometimes they lead their lives the right way and sometimes the wrong way because they only want to fulfill their wishes and desires. 

But Shakyamuni Buddha did not want what most people want. His great purpose and question was: what are the roots of sentient beings’ suffering? He wanted to find that answer in order to help all sentient beings out of their suffering by finding the truth that is beyond the sentient beings’ roots and concepts. 

That is why although He had a prosperous life, a loving family and fame, He decided to leave home in order to find the cause of sentient beings’ suffering and how to eliminate that suffering. While He was carrying out His ascetic practice, He directly experienced what suffering is and the impermanence of our human form. He realized the infinite, permanent truth, which is beyond impermanence. 

Although we presently have an impermanent form while we live here on this planet, He saw that we could live life without any suffering, not only while alive but also after death. He attained this wise method, which is why He could teach us. 

Once He attained enlightenment, He went to the five practitioners that practiced together with Him. They all thought that Shakyamuni Buddha was going on the wrong path, but He wanted to teach them first, so he made the Four Noble Truths (Suffering, cause of suffering, eliminating suffering, and enlightenment). 

Actually, the truth is always right here, but because of the upside-down sentient being’s minds, we are unable to see it. That is why sometimes He taught us with His supernatural penetration power that the truth is far away from us, and sometimes, according to the situation, He had to show us with His form by transforming into a Bodhisattva or other forms (man, woman, animal, etc.) to help save sentient beings.

He is continuously saving all of us, yesterday, today and tomorrow.


5,697  January 14, 2008  Lotus Buddhist Monastery 

Shakyamuni Buddha cares for others and for all sentient beings. He went to seek Buddha (which means the absolute, the truth), and in doing so, He forgot all His suffering, even in the very cold weather. His body was freezing cold, but without complaining, He went through great sufferings and realized Buddha. When His mind became immensely wide and clear, in that true mind, He saw all the sentient beings.

He saw that all the sentient beings have not yet realized the Buddha and are attached to their “I, my, me”, only caring for and protecting their own benefit. In order to do that, they fight with others, make others suffer, and sometimes because of jealousy, they wish for others to do poorly. Thus, they block the people’s great way, and at the same time, they think that their actions are correct. They live the most difficult life with their wrong concepts.

When these kinds of people leave this world, they carry a very heavy karma bag, and even though they are in the other world, they still suffer. At the same time, they cannot be free from the wheel of samsara and so have difficulties coming out of ignorance.

In order to save this kind of sentient being, Shakyamuni Buddha truthfully shared His enlightenment through His great Dharma teaching. He wanted all sentient beings to have the greatest, most joyous nirvana, while living or after death, instead of being continuously caught in samsara. 

So, He gave His wise teaching through The Four Noble Truths and through the teaching of the great Eightfold Path. If one lives one’s life according to the Eightfold Path, one will not build up negative karma, and at the same time, one will build up much virtue, so that one can live a wise and appreciative life and realize Buddha oneself. One will find infinite inextinguishable happiness, so that while one is alive, and also after death, one can do the correct function and duty as good sons and daughters of Buddha. 

Let us give our greatest respect to Shakyamuni Buddha on His Enlightenment Day. Let us worship and bow to Shakyamuni Buddha on His Enlightenment Day, which is tomorrow.


Four Noble Truths: Suffering, the cause of suffering, the end of suffering, and enlightenment. 

Eightfold Path: right seeing, right thinking, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right recollection, and right concentration. 


What I am teaching you is not new. You heard about it before in either this or a past life. This daily teaching is simply to remind us so that we can be clear and live correctly in this and future lives. Believing this teaching is entirely the decision of the one who reads it. In addition, applying one’s own concept to this teaching is the choice of the reader himself or herself. © Ji Kwang Dae Poep Sa Nim


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