The Triple Gem
1. The Buddha — The self awakened one. The original nature of the Heart;
2. The Dhamma — The Teaching. The nature of reality;
3. The Sangha — a. The Awakened Community. b. Any harmonious assembly. c. All Beings.
The Four Noble Truths
1. The Noble Truth of Dukkha – stress, unsatisfactoriness, suffering;
2. The Noble Truth of the causal arising of Dukkha, which is grasping, clinging and wanting;
3. The Noble Truth of Nirvana, The ending of Dukkha. Awakening, Enlightenment. “Mind like fire unbound”;
4. The Noble Truth of the Path leading to Nirvana or Awakening.
All Buddhist teachings flow from the Four Noble Truths. Particularly emphasised in the Theravada.
The Four Bodhisattva Vows
1. I vow to rescue the boundless living beings from suffering; (Link to 1st Truth)
2. I vow to put an end to the infinite afflictions of living beings; (Link to 2nd Truth)
3. I vow to learn the measureless Dharma-doors; (Link to 4th Truth)
4. I vow to realise the unsurpassed path of the Buddha. (Link to 3th Truth)
Foundation of the Mahayana Path, these vows say. ‘Whatever the highest perfection of the human heart-mind may I realise it for the benefit of all that lives!’