There Is No Suffering 93

From the perspective of creating karma, there are two kinds of wisdom: wisdom with outflows ( samskrita) and wisdom without outflows ( asamskrita). In wisdom with outflows, one has realized prajna but still attaches to a self. In wisdom without outflows, one has realized prajna and one no longer attaches to a self. Obviously, wisdom with outflows arises first. A person in whom such wisdom has arisen does not have perfect wisdom, and still relies on the Buddha’ s wisdom. It is like trying to inflate a balloon that has a leak; it needs constant attention to say inflated. If you perform virtuous actions with a self-centered mentality, you will still create suffering. The good karma you reap will eventually diminish. Therefore, a person who has wisdom with outflows needs to keep the precepts, study the Dharma, and practice samadhi. On the other hand, one who has wisdom without outflows is no longer attach to a self, has no afflictions, creates no karma, and does not abide in suffering.

Contemplation of the Four Noble Truths

Knowing that we suffer, the actual feeling of suffering will diminish. If we are unaware of our suffering, that makes it worse. Someone may have caused you a lot of pain, and you are constantly aware of this person. Though the incident happened in the past, the more you dwell on it, the worse it gets. When this experience becomes so ingrained, you may no longer see it as suffering. However, once you realize your underlying suffering, you can simply not dwell on it so much, and start to let it go. At this point, even if the situation continues, your suffering will abate. Knowing that something is suffering is, precisely, contemplation of suffering, the first noble truth.

Next is contemplating the causes of suffering (the second noble truth). When you suffer, you may think it is due to some external reason-—hat you are unlucky, or victimized. On the other hand, if you contemplate the causes of suffering, you will recognize that suffering does not come without cause; and the cause of suffering is not outside, but within yourself. Truly knowing this will reduce suffering. When we contemplate the causes of suffering, we recognize that certain negative actions will lead to certain negative consequences. Hence, to avoid suffering, you must first recognize and refrain from such acts. Second, when doing virtuous acts, do not focus on enjoying the consequence of your virtue, dwell in pride or arrogance, or be self-indulgent.