Monday, October 23, 2017

Happy? "The Fourth Noble Truth" (film)

Gary McDonald (; Ananda, Dhr. Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

“Do you want to be happy?”

I teach Buddhist meditation.
The Fourth Noble Truth takes place in a Buddhist context. So a brief explanation of Buddhism might be helpful.

The Buddha never set out to start a "religion." His goal was to show the path to happiness, that is, the way to end all suffering. What he discovered was encapsulated in what are taught as the "Four Noble [Ennobling] Truths."
1. The First Noble Truth
is that life is beset by psychic suffering, such as stress, sadness, woe, angst, disappointment, discontent, pain or what can be lumped together and collectively called "unhappiness."
2. The Second Noble Truth
is that the cause of this suffering is craving (clinging, grasping, greed, desire). Not the fleeting kind, but a sticky clinging or pernicious attachment to things like material possessions, people, and validation.
3. The Third Noble Truth
is that if we stop these fixations, we will stop the suffering that accompanies clinging (to things that are actually -- in the ultimate sense -- impermanent, irksome, and impersonal).
4. The Fourth Noble Truth
is that the way to end suffering is by practicing the Noble Eightfold Path, which is a way of life embodying these eight virtues:
  1. Right Understanding
  2. Right Intention
  3. Right Speech
  4. Right Action
  5. Right Livelihood
  6. Right Effort
  7. Right Mindfulness
  8. Right Concentration
The Buddha taught that developing the virtues of the Fourth Noble Truth is the key to happiness.

About the movie (trailer)

After being convicted of road rage, playboy movie star Aaron Redmond (Harry Hamlin) is sentenced to individual meditation lessons with a Buddhist meditation teacher named Rachel (Kristen Kerr), who frowns on his bad boy lifestyle. In each of their encounters, Rachel teaches Aaron one essential truth and avoids his patterned flirtations. But soon their mutual attraction forces them to rethink their life choices or risk losing love.

1 comment:

Gary T. McDonald said...

I made the film.

A Director's Cut (which I think is much better) will be available on DVD in August of 2018 if fortune smiles.

I appreciate you writing about the film and am open to further dialogue.