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Sa'nyutta Nikaaya,
V: MahaaVagga
54 Aanaapaana Sa'nyutta

Connected Discourses on Breathing

1. Ekadhammavaggo

Book 2: Aananda

Sutta 11

At Icchaana'ngala

Translated from the Pali by Bhikkhu Bodhi

 


 

[1][pts][bd] On one occasion the Blessed One was dwelling at Icchaana'ngala in the Icchaana'ngala Wood.

There the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus thus:

"Bhikkhus, I wish to go into seclusion for three months.

I should not be approached by anyone except the one who brings me almsfood."

"Yes, venerable sir," those bhikkhus replied,
and no one approached the Blessed One except the one who brought him almsfood.

[326] Then, when those three months had passed,
the Blessed One emerged from seclusion and addressed the bhikkhus thus:

"Bhikkhus, if wanderers of other sects ask you:

'In what dwelling, friends,
did the Blessed One generally dwell
during the rains residence?'

- being asked thus,
you should answer those wanderers thus:

'During the rains residence, friends,
the Blessed One generally dwelt in the concentration by mindfulness of breathing.'

"Here, bhikkhus, mindful I breathe in,
mindful I breathe out.

When breathing in long I know:
'I breathe in long';
when breathing out long I know:
'I breathe out long.'

When breathing in short I know:
'I breathe in short';
when breathing out short I know:
'I breathe out short.'

I know: 'Experiencing the whole body I will breathe in.'

...

I know: 'Contemplating relinquishment,
I will breathe out.'[312]

"If anyone, bhikkhus, speaking rightly
could say of anything:

'It is a noble dwelling,
a divine dwelling,
the Tathagata's dwelling,'

it is of concentration by mindfulness of breathing that one could rightly say this.

"Bhikkhus, those bhikkhus who are trainees,
who have not attained their mind's ideal,
who dwell aspiring for the unsurpassed security from bondage:
for them concentration by mindfulness of breathing,
when developed and cultivated,
leads to the destruction of the taints.

Those bhikkhus who are arahants,
whose taints are destroyed,
who have lived the holy life,
done what had to be done,
laid down the burden,
reached their own goal,
utterly destroyed the fetters of existence,
those completely liberated through final knowledge:
for them concentration by mindfulness of breathing,
when developed and cultivated,
leads to a pleasant dwelling in this very life
and to mindfulness and clear comprehension.[313]

"If anyone, bhikkhus, speaking rightly
could say of anything:

'It is a noble dwelling,
a divine dwelling,
the Tathagata's dwelling,'

it is of concentration by mindfulness of breathing that one could rightly say this." [327]

 


[312] In the Buddha's description of his own practice of mindfulness of breathing, sato va ("just mindful") is replaced by simple sato, and sikkhati ("he trains") is entirely dropped. Spk explains that va is omitted to show the exceptional peacefulness of his practice, since the in-breaths and out-breaths are always clear to him; sikkhati is omitted because he has no need to train himself.

[313] Cpo 22:122 (III 169,1-3) and II, n. 332.

 


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