4 Noble Truths Is a Recursive Procedure

4 Noble Truths Is a Recursive Procedure

Posted in the Buddhism Forum


Westbury, NY

#1 Nov 7, 2013
So if you don't understand what recursion is, you don't understand the genius of Buddha!!!

Recursion is the process a procedure goes through when one of the steps of the procedure involves invoking the procedure itself. A procedure that goes through recursion is said to be 'recursive'.
To understand recursion, one must recognize the distinction between a procedure and the running of a procedure. A procedure is a set of steps based on a set of rules. The running of a procedure involves actually following the rules and performing the steps. An analogy: a procedure is like a written recipe; running a procedure is like actually preparing the meal.

4 Noble Truths as a Recursive Procedure

The most fundamental level of the Buddha’s Teaching is that of the four noble truths: the truth of dukkha,[22] the truth of the arising of dukkha, the truth of the ceasing of dukkha, and the truth of the path leading to the ceasing of dukkha.
The fourth truth is, in its expanded form, that of the noble eightfold path, namely, right view, right attitude, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.
The first of these factors, right view, is defined (at e.g. D. 22: ii,312) as knowledge of the four noble truths.

Such knowledge will of course include knowledge of the fourth of these truths, namely the noble eightfold path; and it will of course include knowledge of the first factor of that path, namely right view. Therefore right view means (among other things) having right view about right view. Further, it means having right view about right view…about right view. Not only does one know, but one knows that one knows. As with properly aligned mirrors, which reflect each other’s images endlessly, so too the hierarchy of knowledge is recursively infinite.

Westbury, NY

#2 Nov 7, 2013
Sorry, I should say recursive algorithm. So if you love Buddha, you must learn recursion :)

Westbury, NY

#3 Nov 9, 2013
Recursive algorithms require a base case so that it does not become an infinite loop and gives the final condition for the loop to stop.

So what is the base case in the 4 Noble Truths?

That's the third Noble Truth, The Arya Truth of The Cessation of Suffering.

As we meditate and the base case is reached, THE TRUTH OF THE CESSATION oF SUFFERING, the wheel of Dharma stops spinning.

Westbury, NY

#4 Nov 9, 2013
So again, The 4 Noble Truths is recursive since as the above cited Sutta shows that the 4 Noble Truths calls itself in "Right View"- Buddha defines Right View in the Noble Eightfold Path as "knowledge of The 4 Noble Truths". A function calling itself to solve a problem is called recursive.

So this creates multiple cases of the 4 Noble Truths to form within you, depending on how off balance you are from the center due to the First Noble Truth, The Truth Of Suffering. This generates RIGHT VIEW as in an undistorted mirror.

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