Proper Concentration

Buddhism (per Siddatta or Siddarta Gautama in the Buddhavacana, Tipitaka, Suttas)

Siddatta Gautama, the Buddha, was born as a Hindu prince in Nepal which was then a part of Greater India. Siddatta instituted a Noble Silence regarding Deities, Theology, Prayers, Hymns, Sacrifices, & Images in order to correct the Hindu Idolatry of his day that was led by the Bramins/Hindu Priests. Siddatta taught a doctrine of Impermanence. Siddatta established a Sangha/Monastery. Siddatta taught that beings don’t have a Soul/Atman, but rather an An-Atman/Non-Soul/Consciousness. Siddatta taught that people could possibly achieve Moksha/Nirvana/Satori/Enlightenment/End/Release from Reincarnation/Samsara in just one monastic lifetime, although it was highly unlikely. After his own achievement of Moksha/Nirvana/Satori/Enlightenment/End/Release from Samsara/Reincarnation, Siddatta taught: the 4 Noble Truths, the 8-Fold Path to Enlightenment, the Middle Path, the Noble Silence, & the Doctrine of Impermanence.

The 1st Noble Truth is that Life is full of Duka/Suffering. The 2nd Noble Truth is that Duka/Suffering is the result of Tanha/Desire & the false belief that you really exist as an individual. The 3rd Noble Truth is that Duka/Suffering can be extinguished by ending Tanha/Desire, appetite, lust, greed. The 4th Noble Truth is that one can end Tanha/Desire & Duka/Suffering by following 8-Fold Path to Enlightenment:

1. Proper Understanding – Rejection of the False Belief in the Self & Knowledge of the 4 Noble Truths

2. Proper Effort – Working hard to Resist Temptation

3. Proper Mindfulness – Paying Attention: to Your Own Inner Feelings, Thoughts, & Motivations; to Society around you; & to the Current Events & Human Rights Abuses in the Whole World with the Goal of Experiencing Compassion & Expressing Solidarity with People & other Sentient Beings who Suffer

 

4. Proper Concentration – Focusing on worthy Goals; Meditation helps you achieve this

5. Proper Thoughts or Intentions – 3 sets of Thoughts: Asceticism, Generosity, & Nonviolence

6. Proper Action – No Stealing, Killing, extra-marital Sex, Lying, or Consumption of Mind-Altering Chemicals, (Proper Action is like the Judeo-Christian Biblical 10 Commandments)

7. Proper Livelihood – Avoiding Jobs that are Destructive to People, Living Beings, & Nature/Creation; Avoiding Work in: Production & Sales of Weapons, Mind-Altering Chemicals, & the Slaughter of Animals

 

8. Proper Speech – Avoiding Lies, Slander, Gossip, Threats, Curses, & Foul or Harsh Words

The Noble Silence – Intentional avoidance of talk, theology, & teaching about deities. Not talking about deities, about religious legends, not worshipping, not offering sacrifices, and not praying. The Noble Silence is intended to serve as a corrective teaching against idolatry and the temptation toward insincere conversion, that is, the use of wealth to fund sacrifices in order to reverse meritoriously negative karma. Theravada and Zen Buddhists mostly observe it; Mahayana and Tantric Buddhists do not.

 

The 3 Jewels of Buddhism: I take refuge in the Buddha. I take refuge in the Dharma (Buddhist teachings). I take refuge in the Sangha (Buddhist monastic community that includes monks, nuns, & laity).