We have all heard about the word ‘Nirvana’ and its different connotations. To different people, it might also have a different meaning. The word is Sanskrit and literally means ‘to extinguish’ or ‘to blow out’. Nirvana is identified in Hinduism and also has its roots in Buddhism where it is believed t be the final spiritual goal in life and means to blow out all feelings of hatred, ignorance, delusion and any kind of sufferings. The English meaning of the word however suggests Bliss, Tranquility or Peace as the literal translation.
The philosophy of Buddhism is both deep and wide and includes the study of various aspects of life like Kama, Rebirth, and Reincarnation. The Eightfold path in Buddhism forms a central guideline to achieve the ultimate spiritual goal of Nirvana. The process of following the guidelines in The Eightfold Path is actually the process of discovering oneself among the worldly affairs.
The Eightfold Path
The eight fold path is a set of guidelines to try and live life with deeper understanding. Buddhism does not expect anyone to follow its teachings blindly but to understand them well and get closer to the path of Buddhism. Following are the eight steps:
- Right Understanding- Right understanding refers to the right understanding of life and accepting it the way it is and not how one perceives it. It should be accepted with all its desires, sufferings, pain and joys.
- Right Intent- After the right understanding of life, we must have the right Intent to live it as per our heart’s wish. It is important that the kind of life we wish to live must be the decision of our clear intent.
- Right Speech– Realizing the importance of good speech and to be aware of the ill effects of idle gossip is important. Right speech emphasizes the importance of thoughtful communication.
- Right Action- It talks about the importance of taking the right action to achieve better results. It includes the five commandments that Buddha talked about. They are- not to kill, lie or to steal, not to involve in any sexual misconduct and avoid taking drugs or intoxicants.
- Right Livelihood- The right livelihood emphasizes the importance of a good life and having respect for that life. It considers all living beings as equal and holds their lives as important too.
- Right Effort- Right efforts should be made to live a happy and satisfied life. It includes having determination, zeal and positive outlook towards living a life. Also to have right efforts in life negative feelings like jealousy and anger should be over powered.
- Right Mindfulness- Right mindfulness is a mind game. It expects a person to be aware of every moment in life that he lives. By being aware of what is going in our minds, we can change it if required.
- Right Concentration- After focusing on our mind and realizing what is going within, we can make a deliberate effort of concentrating it in the right direction.
Nirvana memorial garden in Singapore is a six star luxury Columbarium which offers religious services for the departed soul in accordance with Buddhism.