The Three Trainings - Buddhism, Philosophy, and Khmer Literature


Buddhism, Philosophy, and Khmer Literature

The teachings of the Buddha are aimed solely at liberating sentient beings from suffering. The Basic Teachings of Buddha which are core to Buddhism are: The Three Universal Truths; The Four Noble Truths; and The Noble Eightfold Path.

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Friday, July 28, 2023

The Three Trainings


The three trainings in Buddhism are:

  • Sila (ethics or virtue): This training involves cultivating moral conduct and abstaining from harmful actions. It is based on the five precepts, which are:
    • Not to kill
    • Not to steal
    • Not to engage in sexual misconduct
    • Not to lie
    • Not to use intoxicants
  • Samadhi (concentration or meditation): This training involves training the mind to focus and concentrate. It is essential for developing insight and wisdom.
  • Prajña (wisdom): This training involves developing insight into the true nature of reality. It is the highest of the three trainings, and it leads to liberation from suffering.

The three trainings are interrelated, and they work together to help us achieve enlightenment. Sila creates the foundation for samadhi, and samadhi leads to prajna. Prajna, in turn, helps us to maintain sila and samadhi.

The three trainings are also summarized in the Eightfold Path, which is the Buddha's teaching on the path to enlightenment. The Eightfold Path is divided into three sections, which correspond to the three trainings:

  • Right understanding and right thought are aspects of prajna.
  • Right speech, right action, and right livelihood are aspects of sila.
  • Right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration are aspects of samadhi.

The three trainings are an essential part of Buddhist practice. They provide a framework for developing the qualities that lead to enlightenment. If you are interested in learning more about the three trainings, I recommend reading the following texts:

  • The Threefold Training by Bhikkhu Bodhi
  • The Way of the Bodhisattva by Shantideva
  • The Dhammapada

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