Noble eightfold path

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The noble eightfold path (Skt. āryāṣṭāṅgamārga; Tib. འཕགས་པའི་ལམ་ཡན་ལག་བརྒྱད་པ་, Wyl. ‘phags pa’i lam yan lag brgyad pa), belonging to the thirty-seven factors of enlightenment, is practised on the path of meditation. It consists of:

  1. correct view (Skt. samyagdṛṣṭi; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་ལྟ་བ་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i lta ba)
  2. correct intention (or thought) (Skt. samyaksaṅkalpa; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་རྟོག་པ་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i rtog pa)
  3. correct speech (Skt. samyagvāc; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་ངག་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i ngag)
  4. correct action (or conduct) (Skt. samyakkarmānta; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་ལས་ཀྱི་མཐའ་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i las kyi mtha')
  5. correct livelihood (Skt. samyagājīva; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་འཚོ་བ་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i 'tsho ba)
  6. correct effort (Skt. samyagvyāyāma; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་རྩོལ་བ་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i rtsol ba)
  7. correct mindfulness (Skt. samyaksmṛti; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་དྲན་པ་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i dran pa)
  8. correct concentration (Skt. samyaksamādhi; Tib. ཡང་དག་པའི་ཏིང་ངེ་འཛིན་, Wyl. yang dag pa'i ting nge 'dzin)

The Sutra of the Ten Bhumis says:

"One trains in correct view, remaining in isolation, remaining free from attachment, remaining in cessation and meditating on complete transformation through abandonment. It is the same for correct intention, correct speech, correct action, correct livelihood, correct effort, correct mindfulness and correct concentration."

Khenpo Namdrol explains:

"The noble eightfold path pertains to the post-meditation of the path of meditation.
"Correct view is the fully eliminating branch because it eliminates all the opposing factors. Correct thinking is the branch that enables understanding of the view. Correct speech, action and livelihood are the branches that inspire faith in others. Correct speech is the means by which one communicates one’s own understanding to others, inspiring them with faith. Correct action, referring to the forsaking of the negative actions such as killing, is a means to inspire others through one’s own diligence. Correct livelihood means inspiring others through having few desires. Correct effort, mindfulness and samadhi are antidotes. Correct effort is the antidote to the root emotional obscurations to be abandoned through the path of meditation. Correct mindfulness is the antidote to the subsidiary emotional obscurations to be abandoned through the path of meditation. Correct samadhi is the antidote to samadhi’s opposing factors."

Related to the Three Training

When related to the three trainings, correct view and thinking correspond to the training in wisdom, correct speech, action and livelihood to the training in discipline, and effort, mindfulness and concentration to the training in meditation.

Translation

The eight are often translated as 'right view', 'right intention' and so on. B. Alan Wallace and Robert Thurman have suggested that a more accurate translation would be 'realistic view', 'realistic intention', etc.

Oral Teachings Given to the Rigpa Sangha