Essay by tesibaby15 March 2004

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The teachings of Buddha are slightly different from those of other religions. Ultimately, it is focused on the clearing of ones mind and achieving a highly enlightened state called nirvana. This can be reached by doing many things. One of which is causing no harm to surrounding life. Also, the ability to control positive karma in their lives can increase their chances of reaching this state. Buddha stated the Four Noble Truths to explain the overall ideals that Buddhists must achieve. Also, he laid out an Eight Fold Path to help the Buddhist find his way to nirvana step-by-step. Yet, the notion of avoiding destruction of living objects is slightly difficult for me to understand.

Since followers of Buddhist teachings do not believe in harming others, the suffering is not only mutual among the believers but is shown to all. As a Christian, the concept of not causing harm to the slightest thing is perplexing.

I remember in the movie Seven Years In Tibet, the Dalai Lama wanted to build a movie theater. They could not build it immediately due to the fact they would harm the worms that inhabited the sacred ground. Because of this, the monks were forced to move all of the worms they found to another part of the city. It seems that they use this idea of suffering to create a somewhat ethical sense of how to live. It is very much like the Golden Rule taught by Jesus: "In everything do to others as you would have them do to you: for this is the law and the prophets." (Matthew 7:12 NRSV) This helps to explain why they do not harm others or cause them suffering.

Causality, the simple fact of why things happen and for what reasons, was taught by the Buddhists to...