Happy Buddha Day!!
Happy Buddha Day from @happyops!! Today celebrates Buddha Shakyamuni’s first teaching on the Four Noble Truths. This is known as the first ‘turning of the wheel of Dharma’. In the Four Noble Truths the Buddha sets out the core points and basic structure for all subsequent teachings. Even in the finer points of the teachings on emptiness, the lofty goals of bodhicitta, or the most esoteric tantric practices still fit within the Four Noble Truths.
The following books provide excellent coverage on the Four Noble Truths, including five paths.
‘The Four Noble Truths: The Foundation of Buddhist Thought’ by Geshe Tashi Tsering
‘The Four Noble Truths’ by Losang Gyatso
‘The Four Noble Truths: A Guide to Everyday Life’ by Lama Zopa Rinpoche
International Sangha Day
Today also celebrates international Sangha day where we take the time to appreciate the tireless effort of Buddhist monks and nuns around the world. The Sangha are an integral part of the Buddha’s teachings.
The Buddha as the source of Buddhist teachings. The Buddhist teachings are known as the Dharma. The monks and nuns keep the Dharma alive and practice the Dharma through their actions of body, speech, and mind. The Sangha typically operate Buddhist centres and depend on donations and other contributions from the community that they support. Please consider making a donation to your local Buddhist centre or the Sangha.
An often-used metaphor refers to to the Buddha as being like a doctor or surgeon that can diagnose our condition, the Buddha identified the source of our and bring about the end of all suffering. The Dharma is like the medicine that the doctor prescribes to cure our suffering, but if we do not actually take the medicine we cannot be cured. The Sangha are like the nurses and healthcare professionals that care for us during our suffering.