The Buddhist Path in 3 words

When you first encounter Buddhism, you’ll hear all sorts of explanations and you might be attracted to fantastic meditation experiences or cool stories about this teacher or that teacher.  The important thing about these things is to not get sidetracked, but rather, focus on the essence – the fundamentals.

What’s this like?  It’s like you have to get to Central Station but then before you get there, you’ve gotten off at some of the smaller stations en-route to Central Station and then you get side-tracked by all the nice things you see – then the train leaves without you.

The Buddhist Path is called the Noble Eightfold Path – but instead of 8, I’m going to make it really simple for you guys – because the 8 factors of the Noble Eightfold Path can be grouped into 3:

1.  Precepts – morality

2.  Samadhi – stillness

3.  Wisdom

So remember that guys.  Precepts, samadhi and wisdom – that is the Buddhist Path.  If you can remember that, then you’ll remember the 8 more easily.  Plus 3 is easier to remember than 8.  3 will hold your focus easier than 8.

These are the fundamentals – you’ve got to get these right from the outset.  If your fundamentals are good, then your whole foundation will be good.  If your foundation has holes in it – whatever you’re trying to build on the foundation can collapse at any time.  So have a good, solid foundation:

– Do your best to hold yourself to a higher standard – the precepts.

– Which will in turn ease the burdens in your heart – giving you peace (samadhi)

– Which will in turn allow your inherent wisdom to arise.

These are called the 3 non-outflow studies.  Because by following these 3, your energy is no longer flowing out and being dissipated into the world of the senses that we live in.  Precepts, samadhi and wisdom – the heart of the Buddhist Path.

12 thoughts on “The Buddhist Path in 3 words

  1. Brilliant Post, I think it is very good that you are bringing attention to important fundamentals like Sila Samadhi Prajna (the key behind all the 84,000 dharma doors). Keep up the great work!

  2. Of the Buddha’s Five Precepts, the precept against killing is the most important. While most people will never take the life of another human being, almost everyone eats meat at least three times a day. Moreover, many hunt, fish or participate in the meat packing industry.

    According to the ADAPTT, 150 billion animals are slaughtered every year just to gratify the desires of a few billion humans.

    In fact, if you visit their animal kill counter (, which calculates how many animals had been killed since you visited the website, you will find that within a minute, over 100,000 animals would have been slaughtered.

    Furthermore, animals and livestock are often caged in inhumane or crowded conditions ; according to the Venerable Master Hsuan Hua, those who cage birds will be deprived of liberty in the future as karmic retribution.

    Thus, it is without doubt that the evil karma being created by eating meat is extremely heavy. If we do not become vegan and liberate life, we will never be able to keep the precepts and dissolve our evil karma. If we cannot keep the precepts, Samadhi and Prajna will continue to elude us.

    Thus, I wish to follow up on the Blog author’s excellent post by exhorting the importance of abstaining from eating meat, hunting, fishing, trapping, raising livestock for slaughter, selling meat or participating in the meat packing industry. Furthermore, liberating life is also important. According to the eminent Upasaka An Shi, the merits from liberating life and veganism are the most potent and speedily eradicates the evil karma that causes death, misfortune and wars.


    Recommended Charity: Tainan Avalokitesvara Homeland Buddhist Association


    Website: (scroll down for bank details)

    Sanctuary gallery:


    This charity is registered with the government of Taiwan. Their mission is to save cattle, pigs, rabbits, poultry, goats, fish and the like from slaughter by purchasing them and moving them to their sprawling animal sanctuary in Tainan county, where they will be cared for for life.

  3. Thank you very much for your post. I freshly consider myself a practicing Buddhist, and at the moment, “Buddhism for Dummies” might be a good purchase. What I mean to say is that it is sometimes difficult to catch the full essence of something like this without guidance, and you seem to be very good at deminutizing (apparently, I just created a new word…LOL). I would be honored to sit with you some time and listen to you speak on this subject.

    Have a blessed day.

  4. I am using Angka meditation which was developed by my Guru Darma Yasa and uses numbers instead of a religious mantra. I’m 65 and after years of attempting to meditate I’ve found success using his technique. Love and Peace..

    • Thanks for the info, Rob. I like that, “Establishing oneself in the Citta”. You will notice that in the Mahayana Sutras, the Buddha states that the Citta/Mind/Buddha Nature is unmoving – and hence it is still.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s