Lisa Simpson prays to the Buddha (Season 22, Episode 5), "Lord Buddha, I know I'm not supposed to want stuff, but come on."
|The Buddha (Indiaaaaaaaaaa.../Flickr.com)|
- Incomprehensibly to the heart not yet attained to insight, we cannot find satisfaction in (composite) "things." They are unreal, they fall apart (anicca), they are by their very conditional nature unsatisfactory (disappointing, "suffering"). They wholly depends on impersonal factors. We cannot "continue" to exist forever if we cannot continue to exist for two consecutive moments. There is no identity from one moment to the next. All that carries over is influence, and we are not influence. Consciousness is not a thing but a conditional process whose conditions keep changing. We cannot be annihilated if we never existed except as this illusory process. This illusion can continue. It has continued for countless aeons, and it has always been associated with disappointment.
- What is the ultimate cause of disappointment/suffering? It is not actually desire (craving); that is the proximate cause. The ultimate cause is ignorance. Illusion is bound up with disappointment.
- Whenever there is ignorance, craving and clinging follow.
- There is SUFFERING now because there is aging and death.
- There is aging and death because there was birth.
- There was birth because there was becoming.
- There was becoming because there was clinging.
- There was clinging because there was CRAVING.
- There was craving because there was sensation.
- There was sensation because there was contact.
- There was contact because there were senses.
- There were senses because there were mind and matter.
- There were mind and matter because there was consciousness.
- There was consciousness because there were mental formations.
- There were mental formations because there was IGNORANCE.