Majjhima Nikaya


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Majjhima Nikāya
III. Upari-Paṇṇāsa
4. Vibhaŋga Vagga

Sacred Books of the Buddhists
Volume VI
Dialogues of the Buddha
Part V

Further Dialogues of the Buddha
Volume II

Translated from the Pali
by Lord Chalmers, G.C.B.
Sometime Governor of Ceylon

London
Humphrey Milford
Oxford University Press
1927
Public Domain

Sutta 137

Saḷāyatana-Vibhaŋga Suttaɱ

Senses and Objects of Sense

 


[215] [278]

[1][pts][than][upal] THUS have I heard:

Once when the Lord was staying at Sāvatthī in Jeta's grove in Anāthapiṇḍika's pleasaunce,
he announced to the Almsmen that he would address them on the classification of sense-relations,
and proceeded to do so as follows: -

[216] There are
(i) Six internal senses to be recognized;
(ii) six (sets of) external sense-objects;
(iii) six groups of consciousness;
(iv) six groups of contacts;
(v) eighteen mental researches;
(vi) thirty-six tracks for creatures,
(vii) Therein 'banish this by that,'
(viii) There are three bases of mindfulness,
which the Noble One cultivates,
and in the cultivation of which
the Noble One as Master
is worthy to teach his following,
(ix) He is called the Supreme trainer of the human heart
for disciples who are being schooled. -

Such is the summary of the classification of sense-relations.

(i) The six inward senses to be recognized are
sight,
sound,
smell,
taste,
touch
and mind.

(ii) The six (sets of) external objects of sense are
things seen,
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched,
and menial objects.

(iii) The six groups of consciousness respectively relate to the (foregoing)
things seen,
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and mental objects.

(iv) The six groups of contacts respectively relate [279] to the (foregoing)
things visible,
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and mental objects.

(v) The eighteen mental researches are as follows: -

Having seen with the eye a visible thing,
a man researches into the visible thing,
and this gives rise either
(a) to what is agreeable,
or (b) to what is disagreeable,
or (c) to what is neither agreeable nor disagreeable.

He researches similarly
into the like three types
of things heard,
of odours,
savours,
[217] things touched
and of mental objects.

Thus there are six agreeable researches,
six disagreeable researches,
and six neutral,
making up eighteen researches in all.

(vi) Of the thirty-six tracks for creatures,
six are agreeable and belong to the world,
while six are agreeable and belong to Renunciation;
six are disagreeable and belong to the world,
while six are disagreeable and belong to Renunciation;
six are indifferent and belong to the world,
while six are indifferent and belong to Renunciation.

The six worldly satisfactions are as follows:

A sense of satisfaction arises either
(a) from contemplation of the fruition of things seen,
of which the sight is conscious, -
objects that are pleasant and agreeable,
grateful and pleasurable to the mind,
but bound up with things material -,
or (6) from contemplation of memories
of what is now past and gone,
vanished and ended -;
this is called worldly satisfaction.

The same applies to
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and mental objects,
making in all the six worldly satisfactions.

Renunciation's six satisfactions are as follows: -

A sense of satisfaction arises when,
on discerning the transitory nature of things seen
and their mutability instability and annihilation,
satisfaction arises from causally understanding and seeing that,
alike in the past
and in the present,
things seen are transitory,
fraught with Ill
and by nature mutable; -
this is called Renunciation's satisfaction.

The same applies to
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and [218] mental objects,
making in all the six satisfactions of Renunciation.

[280] The six worldly dissatisfactions are as follows: -

A sense of dissatisfaction arises either
(a) from contemplation of the absence of seen objects that are pleasant and so forth,
or (b) from contemplation of memories
of the absence of what is now past and gone,
vanished and ended; -
this is called worldly dissatisfaction.

The same applies to
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and mental objects,
making in all the six worldly dissatisfactions.

Renunciation's six dissatisfactions are as follows: -

A sense of dissatisfaction arises when, -
on discerning the transitory nature of things seen
and their mutability impotence and annihilation,
and after causally understanding and seeing that,
alike in the past
and in the present,
things seen are transitory,
fraught with Ill
and by nature mutable -
he summons up the yearning
for the utter Deliverances in the cry:

"When, o when,
shall I develop and dwell
in the sphere in which the Noble Ones now are?"

and, as he so yearns,
his yearning brings with it the dissatisfaction
which is called Renunciation's dissatisfaction.

The same applies to
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and mental objects,
[219] making in all Renunciation's six dissatisfactions.

The six worldly indifferences are as follows: -

There is the indifference on seeing a thing,
which appertains to the ignorant and foolish average man,
who has not triumphed to the full,
who has not triumphed over the ripening consequences of his past,
who has not realized the perils which beset him
but is merely an uninstructed average man; -
such indifference as his
fails to transcend the thing seen,
and therefore is called worldly indifference.

The same applies to
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and mental objects,
making in all the six worldly indifferences.

Renunciation's six indifferences are as follows: -

A sense of indifference arises when,
on discerning the transitory nature of things seen
and their mutability instability and annihilation,
indifference arises from causally understanding and seeing that,
alike in the [281] past and in the present,
things seen are transitory,
fraught with Ill
and by nature mutable; -
such indifference as this
transcends the thing seen,
and therefore is called Renunciation's indifference.

The same applies to
things heard,
odours,
savours,
things touched
and mental objects,
making in all Renunciation's six indifferences.

This completes the tale of the six and thirty tracks for creatures.

[220] (vii) To 'banish this by that'
means that by and through Renunciation's six satisfactions
you should banish and transcend
the six worldly satisfactions;
this is the way to banish and to transcend them.

By and through Renunciation's six dissatisfactions and indifferences
you should similarly banish and transcend
the six worldly satisfactions and indifferences,
respectively.

Now, Almsmen, there is one indifference
which is manifold and of multiplicity:
there is another indifference
which is single and of unity.

The former is an indifference to (particular)
things seen
or heard,
to odours
or savours,
to things touched
or to mental objects.

The latter is a function of Infinite Space,
or of Infinite Mind,
or of Naught,
or of Neither-Per-ception-nor-Non-Perception.

By and through unity
you should banish and transcend multiplicity;
this is the way to banish
and to transcend the manifold.

By and through the entire absence of all cravings
you should banish and transcend specific cravings,
in the indifference which is of unity;
this is the way to banish and to transcend them.

This then [221] is the meaning of 'banish this by that'

(viii) There are three bases of mindfulness,
which the Noble One cultivates
and in the cultivation of which
the Noble One as Master
is worthy to teach his following.

In a compassionate and loving spirit
and out of Compassion
a master expounds his Doctrine to his disciples,
telling them it will make for their good and welfare.

(Three things may happen. In the first case,)
his disciples neither pay attention
nor give ear
[282] nor set themselves to learn
but flout their master's teaching.

In such case the Truth-finder rejoices not,
nor experiences rejoicing,
but remains unperturbed,
still mindful and alive to everything. -

This is the first basis of mindfulness.

Secondly, if, on his expounding the Doctrine for their behoof,
(only) some of his disciples neither pay attention
nor give ear
nor set themselves to learn
but flout his teaching,
the Truth-finder neither rejoices nor does not rejoice,
experiences neither rejoicing nor its converse
but, quit of both emotions equally,
remains indifferent,
still mindful and alive to everything. -

This is the second basis of mindfulness.

Thirdly, if, on his expounding his Doctrine for their behoof,
all his disciples pay attention,
give ear,
and set themselves to learn
without flouting his teaching,
the Truth-finder rejoices
and experiences rejoicing
but remains unperturbed,
still mindful and alive to everything. -

This is the third basis of mindfulness.

[222] Such then are the three bases of mindfulness
which the Noble One cultivates
and in the cultivation of which
the Noble One as Master
is worthy to teach his following.

(ix) He is called the Supreme Trainer of the human heart
for disciples who are being schooled.

When a young elephant -
or colt -
or steer -
is being driven by its tamer,
it runs off in one of four directions, -
ahead or back or left or right;
but the human steer,
when driven by the Trutb-finder,
arahat all-enlightened,
runs off in one of eight directions: -

(i) Having form himself,
he sees forms.

(2)Being inwardly conscious of non-form,
he sees forms externally.

(3) He devotes himself to happiness alone.

(4) By passing entirely beyond all consciousness of material forms
and losing all consciousness of sense-reactions,
by not heeding consciousness of multiplicity,
he comes to think of space as infinite
and so develops and dwells
in the realm of Infinite Space,
and thereafter,
successively,
in the realms of
(5) Infinity of Mind,
(6) Naught,
(7) Neither-Perception-nor-Non-Perception, and
(8) extinction of [283] all feeling and consciousness. -

And that is why he is called
the Supreme trainer of the human heart.

Thus spoke the Lord.

Glad at heart,
those Almsmen rejoiced in what the Lord had said.


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