Right Understanding

“Right Understanding, the first step of the Path, is seeing life as it really is: the objective understanding of the nature of things as they truly are. All things that have arisen, including the so-called being, are nothing but incessant change (anicca), therefore unsatisfactory (dukkha) and productive of suffering. It follows then that what is both impermanent and pain-laden cannot conceal within it anything that is solid, substantial, or unchanging — an eternal soul or an imminent abiding principle (anatta).”

Robert Bogoda

This is the teaching then of Right View or Right Understanding: understanding life as it is; understanding impermanence, suffering, and not-self. Finally, we must understand the Four Noble Truths and how they operate in our lives.

Right View also implies an understanding of karma. We reap what we sow.  We have this great “dharma field,” which is our life, (dharma is not only a teaching of truth but also means phenomena) . We can plant whatever seed we want in this field. But we have to remember that whatever seed we plant, will ripen. So, if I’m planting apple seeds I will get apple trees… not orange trees. If I’m planting weeds, I will harvest weeds…not roses. It is up to me to plant the seeds of good. If I chose to plant the seeds of discord, hate, and division, that is what will manifest in my life. Robert Bogoda again, ‘That is to say, consequences follow causes… whether one believes in karma or not “even as a fall from a great height will result in injury or even death, regardless of our belief or disbelief in the force of gravity.’”

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