Advayavada Study Plan – week 16

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 16 = week 3 of 13, second quarter] As stated before, Advayavada Buddhism does not tell you what to do or believe, but invites us all to make the very best of our own lives by indeed attuning as best as possible with wondrous overall existence advancing over time now in its manifest direction. The 13-week Advayavada Study Plan (ASP) is repeated four times a year for this lofty purpose and the third preliminary subject is dukkha (Pali) or duhkha (Sanskrit), which means suffering, sorrow; dissatisfaction; frustration; stress; gnawing unease; existential distress, caused a.o. by distrust of life and fear of retribution. In Buddhism it is traditionally considered the third of the three (in Advayavada Buddhism, four) signs or marks or basic facts of being and it is also the first of the four noble truths taught by the Buddha. Importantly, in Advayavada Buddhism, dukkha or duhkha does not include emotional grief nor physical pain and is, above all, not seen as a permanent feature of reality: in the context of the four noble truths, it is essentially understood by us as the existential suffering in the sense of a basic frustration, even suffocation, caused by the unhealthy and socially infectious feeling that reality does not conform to the person’s desires and expectations; the unremitting persistency of human distress, alienation and conflict in the world is seen as being mainly due to the very many everywhere indeed not knowing or not understanding or simply disbelieving the actual, i.e. impermanent and finite, nature of individual existence.