Anguttara Nikaya


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Aŋguttaranikāyo
Catukkanipāto

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Fours

Sutta 199
Taṇhājalini

Craving

Translated from the Pali by F. L. Woodward, M.A.

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[1][ati][bd]'Monks, I will teach you craving that ensnares,[1] that floats along,[2] that is far-flung,[3] that clings[4] to one, by which this world is smothered,[5] enveloped, tangled like a ball of thread, covered as with blight,[6] twisted up like a grass-rope, so that it overpasses not the Constant Round (of rebirth), the Downfall, the Way of Woe, the Ruin. Do ye listen to it carefully. Apply your minds and I will speak.'

'Yes, lord,' replied those monks to the Exalted One. The Exalted One said this:

[2][ati][bd]'And of what sort, monks, is craving that ensnares, that floats along, that is far-flung, that clings to one, in which this world is smothered, enveloped, tangled like a ball of thread, covered as with blight, twisted up like a grass-rope, so that it overpasses not the Constant Round (of rebirth), the Downfall, the Way of Woe, the Ruin?

There are these eighteen thoughts which are haunted[7] by craving concerning the inner self and eighteen which are haunted by craving concerning what is external to self.

[3][ati][bd]Now of what sort are the former?

Monks, when there is the thought: I am, — there come the thoughts: I am in this world: I am thus: I am otherwise: I am not eternal:[8] I am eternal:[9] Should I be:[10] Should I be in this world: Should I be thus: Should I be otherwise. May I become: May I become in this world: May I become thus: May I become otherwise: I shall become: I shall become in this world: I shall become thus: I shall become otherwise. These are the eighteen thoughts which are haunted by craving concerning the inner self.

[4][ati][bd]And of what sort, monks, are the eighteen thoughts which are haunted by craving concerning what is external to self?

When there is the thought: By this[11] I am, — there come the thoughts; By this I am in the world: By this I am thus: By this I am otherwise: By this I am not eternal: By this I am eternal; By this should I be: By this should I be in this world: By this should I be thus: By this should I be otherwise: By this may I become; By this may I become in this world: By this may I become thus: By this may I become otherwise: By this I shall become: By this I shall become in this world: By this I shall become thus: By this I shall become othrwise.

These are the eighteen thoughts which are haunted by craving concerning what is external to self.[12]

[5][ati][bd]Now these eighteen thoughts which are haunted by craving concerning the inner self and eighteen which are haunted by craving concerning what is external to self are called "the thirty-six thoughts haunted by craving."

Thus such thirty-six thoughts of past, thirty-six thoughts of future, such thirty-six thoughts of present time make up one hundred and eight thoughts which are haunted by craving.[13]

[6][ati][bd]Verily, monks, this is that craving that ensnares, that floats along, that is far-flung, that clings to one, by which this world is smothered, enveloped, tangled like a ball of thread, covered over with blight, twisted up like a grass-rope, so that it overpasses not the Constant Round, the Downfall, the Way of Woe, the Ruin.'

 


[1]Jāliniɱ. Cf. Dhp. 180, yassa jālinī visattikā taṇhā n'atthi (= S. i. 107). The four words used here describe the process of a fisherman's circular cast-net, a familiar picture in the East.

[2]Sarita. Cf. UdA. 424, saŋsār'aṇṇavaɱ taṇhā-saritanñ ca.

[3]Visaṭa = patthaṭa. Comy. 'the metaphor is that of the net (jāla).'

[4]Visattikaɱ (visatta, clinging). Here Comy. gives the right derivation, but adds the other popular one from visa (poison) of SA. i. 175, visa-phala.

[5]Uddhasta = dhaŋsita.

[6]Cf. D. ii. 55; S. ii. 92, iv, 158 n., reading tantākula-jātā, gu'ā- guṇṭhika-jātā (J.P.T.S., 1919, p. 49).

[7]Vicaritāni. These are discussed in full at Vibhanga, 392 ff., followed by Comy., but there are differences of readings. The editors of both texts have confused the readings. See next n.

[8]As'asmi (Sinh. text has ay'asmi?). It is Skt. asat, and in the next phrase sat. Comy. and Vibh. expl, thus: nicco'smi, dhuvo'smi, sassato'smi, avipariṇāma-dhamm'asmī ti (which is just the opposite of what it means).

[9]Text: sāt'asmi (but sat'asmi lower down). Sinh. and Comy. sat'asmi; Vibh. explains ucchijissāmi, na bhavissāmi (wrong, see above).

[10]San (Skt. syam). Comy. and Vibh. take this as equal to siyaɱ. Text: santi throughout for san ti. The pointing of our text is most confusing here.

[11]Iminā = rūpena, viññāṇena, etc. Comy.

[12]In these two classes our Comy. thus regards ajjhattika as the self, bāhira as the body or mental states, whereas Vibhanga uses bāhira as applying to parapuggala, thus: I am thus, but so-and-so is different. He is a brāhmin, I am not, etc.

[13]Comy. aṭṭha-sataɱ; Sinh. text atthañ ca taṇhā . . . sataɱ. Text strangely reads aṭṭhārasa taṇhā sataɱ.


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