The Three Characteristics

ll formations are transient; all formation are subject to suffering; all things are without a self. Therefore, Whatever there be of form, of feeling, of perception, mental formations, or consciousness, whether past, present, or future, one's own or external, gross or subtle, lofty or low, far or near, one should understand according to reality and true wisdom: This does not belong to me; this am I not; this is not my Self,

Anicca or Impermanence:   Impermanence means transience, is the first of the three characteristics of the existence? Impermanence of things is the arising, passing and changing of things or the disappearing of thing that has become or arising, The meaning is that these things never persist in the same way, but that they are banishing and dissolving from moment to moment

Dukkha or Suffering.  Suffering means "Pain" painful feeling, which maybe bodily and mental and is the second of the three characteristics of existence. The Term Dukkha is not limited to painful experience as under the unsatisfactory nature and the general insecurity of all conditioned phenomena, All are liable to suffering and this includes pleasurable life consists of  continual change all things are subject to incessant and continual decay their owners consequently have to suffer just as must as the things they possess, For example: one fall ill when one's body is out of order.

Anatta or Non-Self:  Non-Self means void of reality or self-existence, is the last of the Three characteristics of Existence, The Anatta doctrine teaches us that neither within the bodily and mental phenomena of existence, nor outside of them, can be found anything that in ultimate sense could be regarded as a self-existing real ego-entity, Soul or any other abiding substance, Anatta may be explained in three stages as follow:

1.   Do not be too self-centered otherwise one would become selfish and would be actuated only by self-interest and would not know oneself in the light of truth. For Instance: being too egoistic, one would believe one is in the right or entitled to this or that but the truth one's belief is erroneous.

2.   We cannot give orders to anything including our bodies and minds to remain unchanged according to our wish, For Instance we could not order our bodies to remain always young and handsome and our mind always happy and alert or remember well.

3.   One who has practiced and attained to the highest level of knowledge will discover that all things including one's own body and mind are devoid of self; or , as one Buddhist proverb puts it "One becomes nonexistent to oneself" Some people with their life times, their are able to conduct themselves in the right manner (without defilement's) appropriate to the place and circumstances in which they live.

Introduction to BUDDHISM

Send mail to with questions or comments about this web site.
Last modified: 2006-03-22