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Sunday, 3 May 2015





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The three characteristics

Today is Vesak poya day, the day on which the Buddha achieved Parinibbana. It is a day when many Buddhists go to temple and contemplate about the religion. Here we give you a brief description of the three characteristics (anicca, dukkha, anatta) or three common properties that make up a true Buddhist.

Everything in the universe has three common properties: anicca, dukkha, and anatta. People, animals, things, towns, mountains, planets, stars, joy, money, knowledge, memories, everything you may imagine and everything you can't imagine. Every possible thing is anicca, dukkha, anatta. These three words are Pali words (Pali was the language spoken by the Buddha). Let's together examine what they mean.









"Anicca " (pronunciation:"anicha") means "unpermanent". Nothing possibly lasts forever without ending sometime. When you enjoy eating a good chocolate cake, even if your pleasure lasts long, it can't last forever. It's the same for everything else.


"Dukkha " (pronunciation: "dook-kha") means " suffering" or "unsatisfaction". Nothing can be wholly satisfying. Everything in life includes a part of suffering. Everything we do is always imperfect.

When a moment is pleasant and all is well suddenly there is a change and does not last long. You enjoy something now because you were in pain before.


"Anatta " (pronunciation: "anat-ta") means "does not exist by itself". Everything that exists and is the combination of several things. When you admire a nice phone or a nice bike, this thing does not exist by itself: it's just a combination of many other things.

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