Aŋguttara Nikāya


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Aŋguttara Nikāya
Pañcaka Nipāta
III: Pañc'aŋgika Vagga

Sutta 26

Vimutt'Āyatana Suttaɱ

Release

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Sourced from the edition at dhammatalks.org

For free distribution only.

 


 

Translator's Note: The question has been sometimes asked: If right concentration is essential to gaining even the first level of awakening, how is it that people can gain awakening while listening to a Dhamma talk? This sutta shows how the act of listening to a Dhamma talk is one way of gaining the inspiration that leads to right concentration.

 


 

[1][pts][bodh][olds] "Monks, there are these five openings to release where a monk — dwelling heedful, ardent, and resolute — releases his unreleased mind, or where his as-yet unended effluents go to their total end, or he reaches the as-yet-unreached unexcelled safety from bonds.

Which five?

"There is the case, monks, where the Teacher or a fellow person leading the holy life teaches the Dhamma to a monk.[1]

And in whatever way the Teacher or a fellow person leading the holy life teaches the Dhamma to the monk, in just that way the monk, with regard to that Dhamma, is sensitive to the meaning, is sensitive to the Dhamma.

In him — sensitive to the meaning, sensitive to the Dhamma — joy is born.

When he is joyful, rapture is born.

In one who is enraptured at heart, the body grows calm.

When the body is calm, one feels pleasure.

Feeling pleasure, the mind becomes concentrated.

This, monks, is the first opening to release where a monk — dwelling heedful, ardent, and resolute — releases his unreleased mind, or where his as-yet unended effluents go to their total end, or he reaches the as-yet-unreached unexcelled safety from bonds.

"Further, it’s not that the Teacher or a fellow person leading the holy life teaches the Dhamma to the monk.

But the monk teaches the Dhamma to others in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it.[2]

And in whatever way he teaches the Dhamma to others in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it, in just that way the monk, with regard to that Dhamma, is sensitive to the meaning, is sensitive to the Dhamma.

In him — sensitive to the meaning, sensitive to the Dhamma — joy is born.

When he is joyful, rapture is born.

In one who is enraptured at heart, the body grows calm.

When the body is calm, one feels pleasure.

Feeling pleasure, the mind becomes concentrated.

This, monks, is the second opening to release…

"Further, it’s not that the Teacher or a fellow person leading the holy life teaches the Dhamma to the monk, nor does the monk teach the Dhamma to others in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it.

But he recites the Dhamma in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it.

In whatever way he recites the Dhamma in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it, in just that way the monk, with regard to that Dhamma, is sensitive to the meaning, is sensitive to the Dhamma.

In him — sensitive to the meaning, sensitive to the Dhamma — joy is born.

When he is joyful, rapture is born.

In one who is enraptured at heart, the body grows calm.

When the body is calm, one feels pleasure.

Feeling pleasure, the mind becomes concentrated.

This, monks, is the third opening to release…

"Further, it’s not that the Teacher or a fellow person leading the holy life teaches the Dhamma to the monk; nor does the monk teach the Dhamma to others in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it; nor does he recite the Dhamma in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it.

But in his awareness he directs his thoughts to the Dhamma in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it; he evaluates it, and mentally examines it.

In whatever way he, in his awareness, directs his thoughts to the Dhamma in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it, evaluates it, and mentally examines it, in just that way the monk, with regard to that Dhamma, is sensitive to the meaning, is sensitive to the Dhamma.

In him — sensitive to the meaning, sensitive to the Dhamma — joy is born.

When he is joyful, rapture is born.

In one who is enraptured at heart, the body grows calm.

When the body is calm, one feels pleasure.

Feeling pleasure, the mind becomes concentrated.[3]

This, monks, is the fourth opening to release…

"Further, it’s not that the Teacher or a fellow person leading the holy life teaches the Dhamma to the monk; nor does the monk teach the Dhamma to others in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it; nor does he recite the Dhamma in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it; nor does he, in his awareness, direct his thoughts to the Dhamma in detail, as he has heard it, as he has learned it, evaluate it, or mentally examine it.

But he has well grasped a certain theme of concentration, has attended to it well, sustained it well, has penetrated it well with discernment.[4]

In whatever way he has well grasped a certain theme of concentration, has attended to it well, sustained it well, has penetrated it well with discernment, in just that way the monk, with regard to that Dhamma, is sensitive to the meaning, is sensitive to the Dhamma.

In him — sensitive to the meaning, sensitive to the Dhamma — joy is born.

When he is joyful, rapture is born.

In one who is enraptured at heart, the body grows calm.

When the body is calm, one feels pleasure.

Feeling pleasure, the mind becomes concentrated.

This, monks, is the fifth opening to release…

"These, monks, are the five openings to release where a monk — dwelling heedful, ardent, and resolute — releases his unreleased mind, or where his as-yet unended effluents go to their total end, or he reaches the as-yet-unreached unexcelled safety from bonds."

 


[1] For examples of people gaining release on hearing the Dhamma, see SN 22:59 and SN 35:28.

[2] For an example of a person gaining release while teaching the Dhamma, see SN 22:89.

[3] This would be a case of tranquility preceded by insight. See AN 4:170.

[4] According to MN 44, the themes of right concentration are the four establishings of mindfulness. See also AN 5:28.

 


 

Of Related Interest:

MN 7;
SN 55:40;
AN 3:93; DTO #96
AN 5:151;
AN 6:86–88

 


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