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Saɱyutta Nikāya:
IV. Saḷāyatana Vagga
36: Vedanā Saɱyutta
Paṭhama Sagātha Vagga

Sutta 6

Sallatha Sutta

The Arrow

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

 


 

[1][pts][nypo][bodh][olds] "Monks, an uninstructed run-of-the-mill person feels feelings of pleasure, feelings of pain, feelings of neither-pleasure-nor-pain. A well-instructed disciple of the noble ones also feels feelings of pleasure, feelings of pain, feelings of neither-pleasure-nor-pain. So what difference, what distinction, what distinguishing factor is there between the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones and the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person?"

"For us, lord, the teachings have the Blessed One as their root, their guide, and their arbitrator. It would be good if the Blessed One himself would explicate the meaning of this statement. Having heard it from the Blessed One, the monks will remember it."

"In that case, monks, listen and pay close attention. I will speak."

"As you say, lord," the monks responded.

The Blessed One said, "When touched with a feeling of pain, the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person sorrows, grieves, and laments, beats his breast, becomes distraught. So he feels two pains, physical and mental. Just as if they were to shoot a man with an arrow and, right afterward, were to shoot him with another one, so that he would feel the pains of two arrows. In the same way, when touched with a feeling of pain, the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person sorrows, grieves, and laments, beats his breast, becomes distraught. So he feels two pains, physical and mental.

"As he is touched by that painful feeling, he is resistant. Any resistance-obsession with regard to that painful feeling obsesses him. Touched by that painful feeling, he delights in sensual pleasure. Why is that? Because the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person does not discern any escape from painful feeling aside from sensual pleasure. As he is delighting in sensual pleasure, any passion-obsession with regard to that feeling of pleasure obsesses him. He does not discern, as it actually is present, the origination, passing away, allure, drawback, or escape from that feeling. As he does not discern the origination, passing away, allure, drawback, or escape from that feeling, then any ignorance-obsession with regard to that feeling of neither-pleasure-nor-pain obsesses him.

"Sensing a feeling of pleasure, he senses it as though joined with it. Sensing a feeling of pain, he senses it as though joined with it. Sensing a feeling of neither-pleasure-nor-pain, he senses it as though joined with it. This is called an uninstructed run-of-the-mill person joined with birth, aging, and death; with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, and despairs. He is joined, I tell you, with suffering and stress.

"Now, the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones, when touched with a feeling of pain, does not sorrow, grieve, or lament, does not beat his breast or become distraught. So he feels one pain: physical, but not mental. Just as if they were to shoot a man with an arrow and, right afterward, did not shoot him with another one, so that he would feel the pain of only one arrow. In the same way, when touched with a feeling of pain, the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones does not sorrow, grieve, or lament, does not beat his breast or become distraught. He feels one pain: physical, but not mental.

"As he is touched by that painful feeling, he is not resistant. No resistance-obsession with regard to that painful feeling obsesses him. Touched by that painful feeling, he does not delight in sensual pleasure. Why is that? Because the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones discerns an escape from painful feeling aside from sensual pleasure. As he is not delighting in sensual pleasure, no passion-obsession with regard to that feeling of pleasure obsesses him. He discerns, as it actually is present, the origination, passing away, allure, drawback, and escape from that feeling. As he discerns the origination, passing away, allure, drawback, and escape from that feeling, no ignorance-obsession with regard to that feeling of neither-pleasure-nor-pain obsesses him.

"Sensing a feeling of pleasure, he senses it disjoined from it. Sensing a feeling of pain, he senses it disjoined from it. Sensing a feeling of neither-pleasure-nor-pain, he senses it disjoined from it. This is called a well-instructed disciple of the noble ones disjoined from birth, aging, and death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, and despairs. He is disjoined, I tell you, from suffering and stress.

"This is the difference, this the distinction, this the distinguishing factor between the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones and the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person."

The discerning person, learned,
doesn't sense a (mental) feeling of pleasure or pain:
This is the difference in skillfulness
between the sage and the person run-of-the-mill.

For a learned person
who has fathomed the Dhamma,
clearly seeing this world and the next,
    desirable things     don't charm the mind,
    undesirable ones     bring no resistance.

His acceptance
and rejection     are scattered,
    gone to their end,
    do not exist.

Knowing the dustless, sorrowless state,
he     discerns rightly,
    has gone, beyond becoming,
        to the Further Shore.

 


 

See also:
SN I.38;
SN IV.13;
AN V.129;
Straight from the Heart.

 


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