The Buddha’s Secret
The Buddha spent years seeking the secret to understanding the human condition and the sufferings that go with it. His insight was simple, and it can free you of an illusion that promotes dependence. The secret is, “There is no secret.”
Thus in Buddhism there is no Secret Doctrine.
Twenty-five hundred years ago, the Buddha spoke of what came to be known as The Four Noble Truths.
The 1st Noble Truth was that there is suffering, or discontentment with what one has;
The 2nd Noble Truth was that the cause of suffering is attachment (desire).
The Buddha then went on to say that the way out of suffering is non-attachment (non-desire).
This doesn’t mean that we don’t want or need certain things but that our inner peace can be enhanced by not being attached to them – no longer desire them.
Or, we develop a desire for something else to replace a troubling attachment.
12 Step Fellowships
The 3rd Tradition of 12 Step Fellowships is ‘The only requirement … is a desire to stop …’ (non-desire). Many of us have had such a desire for a long time.
This means we develop a desire to stop drinking, drugging, controlling, suffering, gambling or sex addiction.
Indeed this principle can be applied to any behaviour that is causing us trouble. We develop a non-desire for anything that bothers us and we can be free of that discontentment.
Freedom from Desire
But, how do we develop that desire to be free to the point where we are actually free.
This is where 12 Step Fellowships come into play. The greatest strengths in Fellowship are;
- associating with,
- listening to,
- talking with,
- being helped and helping,
- asking questions and listening to the answer,
- being honest with each other,
- seeking a common desire,
We can see fellowship in almost every animal species – a pride of lions, a flock of birds, a herd of elephants, a gaggle of geese. Each of these use fellowship to develop skills, to protect and support each other, to play together, to hunt (work) together,
And, each of these animal fellowships are constantly associating with each other. That’s how fellowship works. See this article; How AA Works; Meetings, Meetings, Meetings.
In 12 Step Fellowships, like Buddhism, there is no secret doctrine. Simply develop your non-desire for the troubling behaviour by associating with like-minded people.
Freedom from your discontent will follow.
The 3rd Tradition of Alcoholics Anonymous; ‘The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking’.