Buddhist Studies for Secondary Students

Unit Two: The Four Noble Truths

The first teaching ever given by the Buddha was to five student monks in a deer park. The Buddha spoke of the Four Noble Truths he had discovered while struggling for enlightenment, these are the central teachings of Buddhism. It was the Buddha’s first awareness that life brings with it illness, age, misery and death that lead him to search for a deeper understanding of how we live, and ways to end suffering.

» Setting in Motion the Wheel of Truth: The first Discourse of the Buddha

The Four Noble Truths are:

Each of these lessons explains the key Buddhist steps in understanding the truth about life, the reasons behind those truths, the possibility of change and the way of life that can lead to a life free of suffering.

All Buddhists study, meditate, think and act in ways that are designed to help them come to a full understanding of each of these Four Noble Truths and to stay on the path the Buddha says will lead them to peace and happiness.

Select and Discuss a story from:

Key Stories from the >> Life of Buddha (Parts 1 & 2)


The first of the Buddha’s sermons after his enlightenment was describing The Four Noble Truths; that life brings suffering, that suffering is part of living, that suffering can be ended and that there is a path that leads to the end of suffering. These ideas sum up the key teachings of Buddhism.

Secondary Level Unit 2: The Four Noble Truths

Multiple-Choice Questionnaire

Activity Box

The Meditation Class: Instructions in Insight and Loving-kindness meditation – showing techniques in sitting and walking.

Buddhist History & Culture: Buddhist Timelines, Scriptures, Women, Countries, Deities, Culture, Statistics.

The Buddhist World: Buddhist Monastics, Pilgrimage, Festivals and Ceremonies, Spread of Buddhism.

eBook Library: Nine Maha (Great) Buddhist Crosswords Puzzles.

Online Research Projects: Choose a topic from nine suggested research projects