3 levels of dukkha

Compassion is an often-used word, but rarely understood. According to the Buddha, compassion is the relief of suffering. So, what is suffering? Buddha used the word ‘dukkha.’ We do not have an English equivalent, so often we use the word suffering, or dissatisfaction, or the German ‘angst.’ What does it mean? The Buddha taught 3 levels of dukkha – obvious physical and mental pain; the suffering of change; and all-pervasive conditioned suffering. The last is the root of all suffering. It is ignorance, or not knowing reality correctly. The opposite is wisdom realizing reality correctly. This is the exact point at which Buddhist wisdom becomes sine qua non for relieving suffering, or essential for compassion. More on this in the next few posts. My new book on this subject is now out – ‘Nagarjuna’s Wisdom,’ is available on Amazon.