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Saɱyutta Nikāya
IV. Saḷāyatana Vagga
40. Moggalāna Saɱyutta

The Book of the Kindred Sayings
IV. Kindred Sayings on the 'Six-fold Sphere'
Chapter 40: Kindred Sayings about Moggallāna

Sutta 7

Ākiñcaññāyatana Suttaṃ

'Nāhaṃ kvaci kassaci kiñcanaṃ||
tasmiṃ na ca mama||
kvaci katthaci kiñcanaṃ n'atthi'
|| ||

Not have I of anyone's whoever's whatever
wherefore not for me
anyone's wherever whatevers are not.
— Olds translation — see AN 4.185[1]

 


 

"I almost got there today!
"Where?"
"The realm that isn't there."
— obo

 


 

The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever[2]

Translated from the Pali by Michael Olds

 


 

[1][pts] I HEAR TELL:

Once upon a time Old Man Moggallāna The Great,
Sāvatthī-town revisiting,
Jeta Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika's Park.

There then Old Man Moggallāna The Great addressed the beggars:

"Beggars, my friends!"

"Friend! the beggars responded to Moggallāna.

Old Man Moggallāna The Great said to them:

"Here, friends, as I had retreated into solitude
there arose in my heart
this train of thought:

'"The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever!
The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever!"
so they say.

Now what then is The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever?'

So then it recurred to me, friends:

'"Here a beggar,
passing uniformly beyond The Realm of Endless Consciousness
thinking 'There's no someone's whatever!"
abides getting a grip
on The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever."

This is what they call The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever'

Then I, friends,
passing uniformly beyond The Realm of Endless Consciousness
thinking 'There's no someone's whatever!"
abided getting a grip
on The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever.

But then, friends,
as I abided in this abiding,
there arose and came about me
attention of mind to
perceptions connected to The Realm of Endless Consciousness.

There then, friends,
The Lucky man, through his magisty,
approached me and said:

"Moggallāna!

Moggallāna!

Do not, brahmin,
be careless with The Realm of Endless Consciousness!

Set your heart on The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever!

Make one with your heart The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever.

Steady your heart in The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever!"

So then I, friends,
passing uniformly beyond The Realm of Endless Consciousness
thinking 'There's no someone's whatever!"
abided getting a grip
on The Realm of Naught Whose-Whatever.

He who would, speaking highly of one, friends, say:

"The Master brought the student to attainment of great higher knowledge,"

would, speaking highly of me, say:

"The Master brought the student to attainment of great higher knowledge."

 


[1] The meaning is that seeing that there is nothing anywhere that can be said to belong to anyone therefore for this one there is no place anywhere that things can come to not being. Apparently the idea is less 'thing' than 'obstruction' — lust, hate, delusion. Bhk. Bodhi's translation, reading: Nāhaṃ kvacana, kassaci kiñcanatasmiṃ, na ca mama kvacana, katthaci kiñcanatātthi of this: "I am not anywhere the belonging of anyone, nor is there anywhere anything in any place that is mine."

[2] Ākiñcaññāyatana. PED has 'state of having nothing, absence of (any) possessions;' and then adds 'nothingness'. Ākiñcañña > akiñcana = no+what+and+so, no+what+etc.; What is missing from the word itself, at least as normally translated, is the idea of ownership, possession, or the obstructions of lust, hate and delusion that originate from ownership or possession of 'things.' This objection might be overcome thinking in terms of how 'things' come to be, that is through own-making, or in other words the very idea of any 'thing' whatsoever is predicated on the idea that it is a product of lust, hate and delusion. Or another approach is to push the word back to cana to koci to ka, 'who'; whose what? So what looks to be the case is that achieving this state there is no lust or hate for, or delusion about ownership of anything whatever because there are no own-made things there. The state itself, however, has been own-made. Like many others of these advanced states this is a near-miss for Nibbāna. This is just speculation on what might be the case based on the name alone.


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