Digha Nikaya


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Sacred Books of the Buddhists
Volume IV

Dīgha Nikāya

Dialogues of the Buddha
Part III

Sutta 33

Saŋgīti Suttantaɱ

The Recital

Nines

Translated from the Pali by T.W. Rhys Davids and
C.A.F. Rhys Davids

Public Domain

Originally published under the patronage of
His Majesty King Chulālankarana,
King of Siam
by The Pali Text Society, Oxford

 


 

[243] There are Nines in the Doctrine, friends, which have been perfectly set forth by the Exalted One who knows, who sees. Hereon should there be chanting in concord by all, not wrangling ... for the happiness of devas and men. Which are they?

[9.01][wp][bd] Nine bases of quarrelling, thus: —
quarrelling is stirred up[1] at the thought:
'he has done me an injury,'
or 'he is doing me an injury,'
or 'he will do me an injury,'
or 'he has done,
is doing,
will do an injury to one I love,'
or 'he has bestowed a benefit,
is bestowing,
will bestow a benefit on one I dislike.'

[9.02][wp][bd] Nine suppressions of quarrelling, thus: —
quarrelling is suppressed by the thought:
'He has done,
[263]is doing,
will do me an injury,
or 'he has done,
is doing,
will do an injury to one I love',
or 'he has bestowed,
is bestowing,
will bestow a benefit on one I dislike', true,
but what gain would there be to either of us if I quarrelled about it?'[2]

[9.03][wp][bd] Nine spheres inhabited by beings. The first four are described in terms verbatim of the first four stations of consciousness [2. 3, x.][ed1]. (5) There are beings without perception or feeling. These live in [244] the sphere of the 'unconscious devas.'[3] (6) There are beings who having passed wholly beyond awareness of material qualities, by the dying out of sensory reaction, by unheeding the awareness of difference, have attained to the sphere of infinite space with a consciousness thereof. (7-9) Similarly other beings have attained to the sphere of infinite consciousness, of nothingness, of neither consciousness nor yet unconsciousness.[4]

[9.04][wp][bd] Nine untimely unseasonable intervals for life in a religious order,
[264] (1) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions],[5] extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And this person is reborn at that time in purgatory.
This is the first untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(2) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And this person is reborn at that time in the animal kingdom.
This is the second untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(3) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And this person is reborn at that time among the Petas.
This is the third untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(4) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And this person is reborn at that time among the Asuras.
This is the fourth untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(5) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And this person is reborn at that time among some longlived deva community.
This is the fifth untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(6) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And this person is reborn at that time in the border countries among unintelligent barbarians, where there is no opening for members of the Order or lay-brethren.
This is the sixth untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(7) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And this person is reborn at that time in the middle countries, but he holds wrong opinions and has perverted vision, holding that gifts,[6] offerings, oblations are as naught, for thhere is no fruit nor result of deeds well or ill done; [265] there are no parents nor birth without them; there are no recluses or brahmins in the world who have attained the highest, leading perfect lives, and who, havintg known and realized each for himself the truth as to this and the next world, do reveal it.
This is the seventh untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(8) A Tathāgata, friends, is born into the world, Arahant Buddha Supreme. The Norm is taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, declared by the Well-Farer.
And though reborn at the time in the Middle countries, he is stupid, dull, or deaf and dumb, unable to know whether a matter has been well said or ill said.
This is the eighth untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.
(9) Or finally, friends, a Tathāagata has not arisen in the world as Arahant Buddha Supreme, the [245] Norm is not taught, quenching [the passions], extinguishing [the passions], leading to enlightenment, as revealed by the Well-Farer; and this person is [in that interval] reborn in the Middle country, is intelligent, bright of wit, nor deaf-mute, able to know whether a matter has been well said or ill said.
This is the nineth untimely,
unsseasonable period
for living in a religious order.

[9.05][wp][bd] Nine successional states, to wit, the Four Jhānas [of Rūpa-world consciousness], the Four Jhānas of Arūpa-world consciousness [266] and complete trance.[7]

[9.06][wp][bd] Nine successional cessations, thus:--Taking each of the foregoing nine in order, by the attainment of (1) First Jhāna, sensuous perceptions cease, (2) Second Jhāna, applied and sustained thought ceases, (3) Third Jhāna zest ceases, (4) Fourth Jhāna, respiration ceases, (5) by the perception of infinite space, perception of material things ceases, (6) by the perception of infinite consciousness, perception of infinite space ceases, (7) by the perception of nothingness, perception of infinite consciousness ceases, (8) by the perception that is neither conscious nor yet unconscious, perception of nothingness ceases, (9) by the cessation of perception and feeling, perception that is neither conscious nor yet unconscious ceases.

These Nines in the Doctrine, friends, have been perfectly set forth by the Exalted One, etc. ... Herein should there be chanting by all in concord...

 


[1] Āghātaṃ bandhati.

[2] So Comy. Cf. Vis. Magga, p. 297 f.

[ed1] I have not broken the code in which this reference was written, these four do exist at Vol.2:#15:33: 'There are beings differing in body and differing in intelligence, for instance, human beings and certain of the gods and some of those in purgatory. This is the first resting place for Cognition.
'There are beings differing in body but of uniform intelligence, for instance, the gods of the Brahma-heaven who are there reborn by means of the First [Jhāna]. This is the second resting-place for Cognition.
'There are beings uniform in body and differing in intelligence, for instance, the Luminous Gods. This is the third resting place for Cognition.
'There are beings uniform in body and of uniform intelligence, for instance, the All-Lustrous Gods. This is the fourth resting place for Cognition.'

[3] Assuming as the Buddhist does, that in Jhāna ecstasy, terrestrial consciousness was exchanged for other-world consciousness, he was logically driven to assume also a source for the abnormal state of mind supervening in complete trance.

[4] As above 3, I, xi

[5] Kilesā. So B.

[6] See above. II, 73 [ed: DN 2 §23]

[7] Cf. above I, II, iv., and 3, I, xi. (4-8).

 


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