Blog | Vlastimil Marek

The Four Noble Truths (for the advanced)

Buddhists and those who are embarking on a journey of learning about oneself via buddhist rules and methods would certainly know those four Buddha’s fundamental noble truths about existence of suffering, the origin of suffering, the truth of cessation and the truth of path leading to this cessation. In other words, that the reason for people’s worries and suffering is basically the fact, that every person has a chance to find out that he suffers because of his fear, and that he has fears because he’s worried about things he likes, and because he doesn’t know that all what he likes as well as everything else he perceives is just an illusion.

 Modern neurosciences (using functional magnetic resonance, which is a method how to see in real time what is happening in the brain of happy and unhappy person in that very moment) have already proved that Buddha was right, and that Indians with their concept of Maya (illusion) have beaten the western world with this discovery by several thousands of years.It is us people, who subconsciously create our own reality and its positive or negative charge; i.e. whether our life and our world is unhappy and full of suffering or the opposite, it is happy and full of joy.  

Not that an unhappy person would never experience moments of happiness (for example, when he buys a new car, or make love to his new girlfriend/lover, or when his virtual bank account increases by imaginary sum or imaginary money), or that a happy person would never experience some moments of worries (or suffering). It is about the whole perception, the impression on the whole, the full range of emotions – simply the whole manifestation of life.

And it is also about being able to positively resolve moments of crisis. Buddha was the first who has been able to overcome programs of his brain through the intense meditation (2600 years before the existence of western medicine he has made a discovery of neuroplasticity on himself; neuroplasticity is an ability of a brain to change in direct dependence on type of long term regular activity). He was able to change the way his brain reacted to the common everyday stimuli. He then found out that it was possible to re-program the way a person perceives his suffering (because his brain focuses on and “practices” the suffering so that the person is unable to recognize and feel anything else than suffering and in the end finds some kind of comfort in it). At that time, Buddha was the only one who discovered it and taught how to get out of such suffering.


He had to make up some simple rules that would help “practice” and escape the vicious circle of negative thoughts which only produce more and more negative thoughts (and their respective body reactions) to his students – beginners. There were no other levels, only beginners. His four truths describe the status at the very beginning of the (remediation) Path. How would a re-phrase of his four truths sound today, now that we know a good few things about human being and his ways of perception of the world as well as his reasons for suffering, because many people have already achieved enlightenment and even more are regular at meditations and trying to achieve the enlightenment in dedicated centres? Perhaps it would sound like this: 

There is happiness, good health and comfort. There are conditions of happiness, good health and comfort. There is a possibility to achieve happiness, good health and comfort. There are methods how to achieve happiness, good health and comfort. In detail (and re-phrased from the explanation of the Four Noble Truths) it could look like this: Life could and should be full of moments of joy and happiness (like when a healthy, well looked after three-year old child plays in closeness of his loving mother). And life really is Happiness, good health, joy and comfort with only the smallest of pain received when exploring the world around (which only serves purpose of indication of normal physical and emotional needs). 

Conditions of achieving and achievement of happiness, good health and comfort are well known: happy pregnancy filled with love, (organic) food, natural and best orgasmic birth giving and then a year of constant care of loving and hormonally balanced mother as well as the next years filled with appreciation, praise and love (so that a perfect and stable structure of fundamental, lifelong and utmost positive emotional base is formed).

Concept of learning through game and work as a hobby is closely connected to it. How could suffering be ended and how to start up (best) permanent happiness, good health and comfort? For example by abolishment of institutionalism and male dominated and lead birth giving procedures, by informing all girls and young women about options and methods how to achieve happiness, good health and comfort of their children, by using new types of assistants and counsellors rather than teachers, by changing (taxation, social and pension) attitudes of the system toward maternity, upbringing of the next generations as well as older generations who are also part of a family.  

Methods of achievement of happiness, good health and comfort are well known to those who try to search for them. And they do work. Buddha’s eight segment path of various physical and mental training can serve even now after 2600 years as a great example to all of us (especially those programmed by culture of suffering crucified person). 

And how beautiful would a re-phrasing of certain Buddha’s speech sound: 

What is the noble truth about happiness, good health and comfort like? A birth can be orgasmic and full of happiness, an illness can be only a bad song in its beginning – which can be tuned up by just another song, death would be a wonderful social and family ritual at the end of the happiest life of every person (which would be the pension years), pain would be a welcome experience on the path to deepen the art of being happy and healthily born and brought up person simply wouldn’t desire what he doesn’t need and therefore will not be disappointed if he can’t have it immediately. Spirituality (and its practice) should be a will be more common in everyday life and it will bring happiness, good health and comfort not only to individuals but to whole societies. Spiritual people, as we can already prove, are happier, healthier and at peace (and also more ecological) than those at the beginning of finding out the existence of suffering, origins of suffering, possibility of cessation and methods leading to the cessation. 

For them the four Buddha’s truths are an important discovery (of a trap into which they fell a couple of thousand years ago). But even this is already a good sign and a “win” situation, because we can’t get out of a trap until we realize we’re in it. And once we work that out we’ll be able to leave the four noble truths to the beginners because we’ll be living our lives in joy, happiness, good health and comfort.