Tag Archives: dukkha

What is dukkha?

17 Dec

For a newcomer it might appear that the Buddha was a pessimist since he stressed dukkha and its causes and eradication. It might appear that Buddhism claims that our lives are inevitably filled with suffering; however that impression is incorrect. It is very,very important to be clear about this central word which appears in all sects of Buddhism. What exactly is it and what is it not?

“Things are dukkha because they are impermanent and therefore unreliable. Actually, dukkha is natural and not suffering. It becomes suffering when the mind identifies with phenomena and grasps. The meaning of dukkha that conveys this process is derived from the breakdown of the word into du, which means “apart from” and kha—or akash—which means “space.” This gives the sense of being apart from the spacious, the perfect, and the complete. In this way dukkha conveys the deepest anguish and dilemma of the self, which is its state of separation from the whole.”

Here’s a wonderful explanation: Dukkha, explained

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