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Eightfold Path to Enlightenment Explained

In Buddhism, the Noble Eightfold Path serves as a practical framework and guide for living, offering eight steps on the path to Enlightenment.

This pathway has three distinct components:

Ethics (sila), mind-training (samadhi) and wisdom (panya), collectively known as: the Threefold Training, the three fundamental aspects of Buddhist practice.

Insightful Wisdom or Panya

Wise View

See the world clearly.

Understand the Four Noble Truths: life has suffering, there’s a cause for that suffering, there’s a way to resolve suffering, and there’s a liberating path of practice to cultivate.

Wise Intention

Set wholesome goals.

Commit to intentions that cultivate kindness, compassion, and letting go of negativity.

Ethical Conduct or Sila

Wise Speech

Speak with kindness.

Avoid gossip, harsh language, and lies.

Choose words that uplift and inspire.

Wise Action

Do no harm.

Be mindful of your actions and their impact on others. This includes not stealing, killing, or engaging in harmful sexual misconduct.

Wise Lifestyle

Earn a living ethically. Choose a profession that aligns with your values and doesn’t cause harm to others or the environment.

Reflect on how to spend your time, your energy, your money and other resources wisely.

Mental Discipline or Samadhi

Wise Effort

Train your mind.

Cultivate positive mental states and let go of negativity. This includes effort to be mindful, focused, and free from distractions.

Wise Mindfulness

Practice presence.

Attend wisely to your thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations in the present moment without judgment.

Wise Concentration

Develop focus, steadiness and clarity through meditation.