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Saɱyutta Nikāya
III. Khandha Vagga
22. Khandhasaɱyutta

Sutta 60

Mahāli Suttaɱ

To Mahāli

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
Provenance, terms and conditons

 


 

[1][pts][bodh] I have heard
that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Vesali,
in the Great Wood, at the Hall of the Gabled Pavilion.

Then Mahali the Licchavi
went to the Blessed One and, on arrival,
having bowed down to him,
sat to one side.
As he was sitting there he said to the Blessed One,

"Purana Kassapa says this:
'There is no cause,
no requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.
Beings are defiled without cause,
without requisite condition.
There is no cause,
no requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.
Beings are purified without cause,
without requisite condition.'[1]

What does the Blessed One say about this?"

"Mahali, there is cause,
there is requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.
Beings are defiled with cause,
with requisite condition.
There is cause,
there is requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.
Beings are purified with cause,
with requisite condition."

"And what, lord, is the cause,
what the requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.
How are beings defiled with cause,
with requisite condition?"

"Mahali, if form were exclusively stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings would not be infatuated with form.

But because form is also pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings are infatuated with form.

Through infatuation,
they are captivated.
Through captivation,
they are defiled.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.

And this is how beings
are defiled with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If feeling were exclusively stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings would not be infatuated with feeling.

But because feeling is also pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings are infatuated with feeling.

Through infatuation,
they are captivated.
Through captivation,
they are defiled.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.

And this is how beings
are defiled with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If perception were exclusively stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings would not be infatuated with perception.

But because perception is also pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings are infatuated with perception.

Through infatuation,
they are captivated.
Through captivation,
they are defiled.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.

And this is how beings
are defiled with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If fabrications were exclusively stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings would not be infatuated with fabrications.

But because fabrications are also pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings are infatuated with fabrications.

Through infatuation,
they are captivated.
Through captivation,
they are defiled.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.

And this is how beings
are defiled with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If consciousness were exclusively stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings would not be infatuated with consciousness.

But because consciousness is also pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings are infatuated with consciousness.

Through infatuation,
they are captivated.
Through captivation,
they are defiled.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the defilement of beings.

And this is how beings
are defiled with cause,
with requisite condition."

"And what, lord, is the cause,
what the requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.
How are beings purified with cause,
with requisite condition?"

"Mahali, if form were exclusively pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings would not be disenchanted with form.

But because form is also stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings are disenchanted with form.

Through disenchantment,
they grow dispassionate.
Through dispassion,
they are purified.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.

And this is how beings
are purified with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If feeling were exclusively pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings would not be disenchanted with feeling.

But because feeling is also stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings are disenchanted with feeling.

Through disenchantment,
they grow dispassionate.
Through dispassion,
they are purified.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.

And this is how beings
are purified with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If perception were exclusively pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings would not be disenchanted with perception.

But because perception is also stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings are disenchanted with perception.

Through disenchantment,
they grow dispassionate.
Through dispassion,
they are purified.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.

And this is how beings
are purified with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If fabrications were exclusively pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings would not be disenchanted with perception.

But because perception is also stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings are disenchanted with perception.

Through disenchantment,
they grow dispassionate.
Through dispassion,
they are purified.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.

And this is how beings
are purified with cause,
with requisite condition.

"If consciousness were exclusively pleasurable
— followed by pleasure,
infused with pleasure
and not infused with stress —
beings would not be disenchanted with consciousness.

But because consciousness is also stressful
— followed by stress,
infused with stress
and not infused with pleasure —
beings are disenchanted with consciousness.

Through disenchantment,
they grow dispassionate.
Through dispassion,
they are purified.

This is the cause,
this the requisite condition,
for the purification of beings.

And this is how beings
are purified with cause,
with requisite condition."

 


[1] DN 2 ascribes this view to Makkhali Gosala, and the view of non-action to Purana Kassapa.

 


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