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Saɱyutta Nikāya
II. Nidāna Vagga
XII. Nidāna Saɱyutta
VI. Rukkha Vagga

The Book of the Kindred Sayings
Part II. The Book Called the Nidāna-Vagga
Containing Kindred sayings on Cause
and Other Subjects
12. The Kindred Sayings on Cause
6. 'The Tree' Suttas

Sutta 51

Parivīmaṃsana Suttaṃ

Pondering

Translated by Mrs. Rhys Davids
Assisted by F. L. Woodward

Originally Published by
The Pali Text Society
Public Domain

 


[80] [55]

[1][bodh] Thus have I heard:

The Exalted One was once staying near Sāvatthī
at the Jeta Grove in Anāthapiṇḍika's Park.

And there the Exalted One addressed the brethren, saying:

"Brethren!"

"Master!" responded those brethren.

The Exalted One said:

"In how many ways should a brother
when pondering
ponder for the complete right destroying of ill?"

[56] "For us, lord, things have the Exalted One as their root,
their guide,
their resort.

Well indeed were it
if the meaning of this that he has spoken
were to manifest itself to the Exalted One.

Hearing it from him,
the brethren will remember it."

"Well then, brethren,
listen,
give your mind thoroughly
and I will speak."

"Even so, lord," responded those brethren.

The Exalted One spake thus:

"In this religion, brethren,
a pondering brother ponders:

'This diverse and manifold ill
that arises in the world
as old age and death: -
what is this ill based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does old age-and-death come to be?

What not being there,
does old age-and-death not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this diverse and manifold ill,
that arises in the world
as old age and death,
is based on birth,
comes to pass by birth,
is brought forth by birth,
is caused by birth.

There being birth,
old age-and-death comes to be;
there not being birth,
old age-and-death does not come to be.

He comes to know old age-and-death,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'[1]

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of old age and death.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This becoming
that arises in the world
as birth: -
what is this becoming based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does becoming come to be?

What not being there,
does becoming not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this becoming,
that arises in the world
as birth,
is based on grasping,
comes to pass by grasping,
is brought forth by grasping,
is caused by grasping.

There being grasping,
becoming comes to be;
there not being grasping,
beoming does not come to be.

He comes to know beoming,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of becoming.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This grasping
that arises in the world
as becoming: -
what is this grasping based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does grasping come to be?

What not being there,
does grasping not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this grasping,
that arises in the world
as becoming,
is based on craving,
comes to pass by craving,
is brought forth by craving,
is caused by craving.

There being craving,
grasping comes to be;
there not being craving,
grasping does not come to be.

He comes to know grasping,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of grasping.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This craving
that arises in the world
as grasping: -
what is this craving based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does craving come to be?

What not being there,
does craving not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this craving,
that arises in the world
as grasping,
is based on feeling,
comes to pass by feeling,
is brought forth by feeling,
is caused by feeling.

There being feeling,
craving comes to be;
there not being feeling,
craving does not come to be.

He comes to know craving,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of craving.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This feeling
that arises in the world
as craving: -
what is this feeling based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does feeling come to be?

What not being there,
does feeling not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this feeling,
that arises in the world
as craving,
is based on contact,
comes to pass by contact,
is brought forth by contact,
is caused by contact.

There being contact,
feeling comes to be;
there not being contact,
feeling does not come to be.

He comes to know feeling,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of feeling.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This contact
that arises in the world
as feeling: -
what is this contact based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does contact come to be?

What not being there,
does contact not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this contact,
that arises in the world
as feeling,
is based on sense,
comes to pass by sense,
is brought forth by sense,
is caused by sense.

There being sense,
contact comes to be;
there not being sense,
contact does not come to be.

He comes to know contact,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of contact.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This sense
that arises in the world
as contact: -
what is this sense based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does sense come to be?

What not being there,
does sense not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this sense,
that arises in the world
as contact,
is based on name-and-shape,
comes to pass by name-and-shape,
is brought forth by name-and-shape,
is caused by name-and-shape.

There being name-and-shape,
sense comes to be;
there not being name-and-shape,
sense does not come to be.

He comes to know sense,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of sense.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This name-and-shape
that arises in the world
as sense: -
what is this name-and-shape based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does name-and-shape come to be?

What not being there,
does name-and-shape not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this name-and-shape,
that arises in the world
as sense,
is based on consciousness,
comes to pass by consciousness,
is brought forth by consciousness,
is caused by consciousness.

There being consciousness,
name-and-shape comes to be;
there not being consciousness,
name-and-shape does not come to be.

He comes to know name-and-shape,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of name-and-shape.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'This consciousness
that arises in the world
as name-and-shape: -
what is this consciousness based on,
how comes it to pass,
what brings it forth,
what causes it?

What being there,
does consciousness come to be?

What not being there,
does consciousness not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that this consciousness,
that arises in the world
as name-and-shape,
is based on activities,
comes to pass by activities,
is brought forth by activities,
is caused by activities.

There being activities,
consciousness comes to be;
there not being activities,
consciousness does not come to be.

He comes to know consciousness,
he comes to know its arising,
he comes to know its ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to its ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of consciousness.

Then again pondering,
he ponders:

'These activities
that arise in the world
as consciousness: -
what are these activities based on,
how come they to pass,
what brings them forth,
what causes them?

What being there,
do activities come to be?

What not being there,
do activities not come to be?'

He pondering comes to know
that these activities,
that arises in the world
as consciousness,
are based on ignorance,
come to pass by ignorance,
are brought forth by ignorance,
are caused by ignorance.

There being ignorance,
activities come to be;
there not being ignorance,
activities do not come to be.

He comes to know activities,
he comes to know their [57] uprising,
he comes to know their ceasing,
and he comes to know the way going to their ceasing.

Thus practising, he becomes a brother
'who walks according to Doctrine.'

This man, brethren, we call a brother
who has wholly practised for the complete destroying of ill,
for the ceasing of activities.

If, brethren, a man who is ignorant
plans an act of merit,
consciousness is on its way to merit;
if he plans an act of demerit,
consciousness is on its way to demerit;
if he plans an act that is stationary,[2]
consciousness is on its way to that which is stationary.

But when in a brother ignorance is banished
and wisdom has arisen,
because of the fading away of ignorance
and the arising of wisdom,
he does not plan an act of merit,
he does not plan an act of demerit,
he does not plan an act that is stationary.

Not planning,
not willing,
he grasps at nothing whatever in the world;
not grasping he is not perturbed;
unperturbed,
he is of and by himself
utterly well.[3]

And he knows that:

'Birth is perished.
The divine life is lived.
Done is what should be done.
There is no more of these conditions!'

If he feels a pleasant feeling
he knows it is transient,
he knows it is not clung to,
he knows it has no lure for him.

If he feels a painful feeling
he knows it is transient,
he knows it is not clung to,
he knows it has no lure for him.

If he feels a neutral feeling
he knows it is transient,
he knows it is not clung to,
he knows it has no lure for him.

If he feels a pleasant feeling,
he feels that feeling with detachment.

If he feels a painful feeling,
he feels that feeling with detachment.

if he feels a neutral feeling,
he feels that feeling with detachment.

[58] When he feels a feeling
that his powers have reached their limit,
he knows that he feels such a feeling.

When he feels a feeling
that life has reached its term,
he knows that he feels such a feeling.

He knows that,
at the breaking up of the body,
from the end of his life here,
all that he has felt,
all that lacked lure for him
will grow cold,
and bodies will be left on one side.

It is just as if a man, brethren,
were to draw out from a potter's oven
a heated jar
and were to place it on a smooth portion of earth,
so that the heat could there cool off
and the sherds dry up.

Even so when the brother feels a feeling
that his powers have reached their limit,
or when he feels a feeling that life has reached its term,
he knows that he feels such a feeling.

He knows that,
at the breaking up of the body,
from the end of his life here
all that he has felt,
all that lacked lure for him
will grow cold,
and bodies will be left on one side.

What think you, brethren,
would a brother for whom the intoxicants[4] are perished
plan either an act of merit,
or an act of demerit,
or an act that is stationary?

'He would not, lord.'

'Or if all activities were absent,
would there from the ceasing of activities
be any consciousness manifested?

'There would not, lord.'

'Or if consciousness were absent,
would there from the ceasing of consciousness
be any name-and-shape manifested?'

"There would not, lord."

'Or if name-and-shape were absent,
would there from the ceasing of name-and-shape
be any sensation manifested?

"There would not, lord."

"Or if sensation were absent,
would there from the ceasing of sensation
be any contact manifested?

"There would not, lord."

'Or if contact were absent,
would there from the ceasing of [59] contact
be any feeling manifested?

"There would not, lord."

"Or if feeling were absent,
would there from the ceasing of feeling
be any grasping manifested?

"There would not, lord."

"Or if grasping were absent,
would there from the ceasing of grasping
be any becoming manifested?

"There would not, lord."

"Or if becoming were absent,
would there from the ceasing of becoming
be any birth manifested?

"There would not, lord."

"Or if birth were absent,
would there from the ceasing of birth
be any old age and death manifested?

"There would not, lord."

"Well done, well done, brethren.

So is it, brethren, not otherwise is it.

Believe me, brethren, be convinced of this, be ye without doubt herein, without hesitation:

Just this is the end of ill."

 


[1] See Ī 16, and *anudhammacāri.

[2] Āneñjaṃ.

[3] Parinibbāyati. Here where we should have valued a comment the Comy. is silent. This difficult term, meaning literally he is wholly extinct (as to all evil), is used not only for the attainment of the unrevealed summum bonum at the last death, but also for other accomplishment, such as the pulling a man out of a bog, and the completed training of a horse (Majjhima i, 45, 446). That the allied word Nibbāna conveyed a sense of perfect wellbeing appears in such a passage as Majjhima i, 508f. Cf. my Buddhism, p. 177 f.

[4] Khīṇ'āsavo. See above i, p. 20, n. 4. A usual name for a saint or Arahant is khīṇāsava.


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