Reply To: Most Important Basics


It is a good question. 

The answer depends on the level of understanding of the person. One way to look at it is as follows.

1. There are two paths: mundane and lokuttara (Noble).

  • One must complete the mundane eightfold path first. That means getting rid of the ten wrong views (miccha ditthi.) As long as one does not believe in kamma and their vipaka, the validity of the rebirth process, that there are living beings in other realms, etc., one does not have the necessary background to comprehend the Four Noble Truths/Paticca Samuppada/Tilakkhana.
  • I keep wondering whether I need to add more posts on completing the mundane path. Relevant posts at “Moral Living and Fundamentals” and “Living Dhamma.”
  • P.S. The importance of getting rid of miccha ditthi is discussed in “Micchā Diṭṭhi, Gandhabba, and Sōtapanna Stage.”

2. Once one gets rid of those wrong views, the next step is to be exposed to the correct explanations of our Noble Truths/Paticca Samuppada/Tilakkhana.

  • The Noble Truths are about the suffering in the rebirth process, how that suffering arises due to attachment to worldly things (which people perceive as pleasures), and how to overcome that attachment by seeing the dangers of remaining in the rebirth process. 
  • That means understanding Paticca Samuppada (PS), which explains how one’s actions/mindset leads to different rebirths. In particular, understanding what types of actions (via apunna abhisankhara) lead to births in the apayas.
  • Then, simultaneously, one would realize the anicca, dukkha, and anatta nature of this world of 31 realms.

So, yes, a Sotapanna Anugami starts on the Noble Path by getting a glimpse of that “deeper vision.” Once getting to that point, there is no turning back because the more one contemplates the nature of this world, the more one becomes convinced about the futility AND danger of remaining in the rebirth process.

That is one way to look at it. “Paṭicca Samuppāda, Tilakkhana, Four Noble Truths.”

Of course, there are always more details. We can discuss any suggestions.