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Four Great Elements (사대)

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Writer Jogye Date13 Aug 2015 Read7,000 Comment0

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Four Great Elements
사대


While you are in your body,
what is solid is of earth,
what is moist is of water,
what is warm is of fire,
and what moves is of wind. 
-
From a Pali text


In Buddhism, all matter is formed by the four great elements.

They are earth, water, fire and wind.

They may represent solidity, fluidity, heat, and motion.

They are the four basic material components of the phenomenal world. All things in the universe consist of the four great elements. The Buddha said that the four great elements cause suffering.

The Buddha also said that the four great elements are intrinsically empty.

This means that all material phenomena are without any real substance.

There is nothing that does not change.

When we fail to understand the true nature of the world, we suffer.

- excerpt from Buddhist English (Elementary 1) published in 2014 by the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism 

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