The Long Discourses of the Buddha
The Chanting Together
© Maurice Walshe 1987.
Used with the permission of Wisdom Publications.
 'There are [sets of] four things which were perfectly proclaimed by the Lord ...
[4.01][pts][olds] 'Four foundations of mindfulness: Here a monk abides contemplating body as body, ardent, clearly aware and mindful, having put aside hankering and fretting for the world; he abides contemplating feelings as feelings ... ; he abides contemplating mind as mind ... ; he abides contemplating mind-objects as mind-objects, ardent, clearly aware and mindful, having put aside hankering and fretting for the world.
[4.02][pts][olds] 'Four great efforts (sammappadhānā): Here a monk rouses his will, makes an effort, stirs up energy, exerts his mind and strives to prevent the arising of unarisen evil unwholesome mental states. He rouses his will ... and strives to overcome evil unwholesome mental states that have arisen. He rouses his will ... and strives to produce unarisen wholesome mental states. He rouses his will ... and strives to maintain wholesome mental states that have arisen, not to let them fade away, to bring them to greater growth, to the full perfection of development.
[4.03][pts][olds] 'Four roads to power (iddhipādā): Here a monk develops concentration of intention accompanied by effort of will, concentration of energy, ...  concentration of consciousness, and concentration of investigation accompanied by effort of will.
[4.04][pts][olds] 'Four jhānas: Here a monk, detached from all sense-de-  sires, detached from unwholesome mental states, enters and remains in the first jhāna, which is with thinking and pondering, born of detachment, filled with delight and joy. And with the subsiding of thinking and pondering, by gaining inner tranquillity and oneness of mind, he enters and remains in the second jhāna, which is without thinking and pondering, born of concentration, filled with delight and joy. And with the fading away of delight, remaining imperturbabie, mindful and clearly aware, he experiences in himself that joy of which the Noble Ones say: "Happy is he who dwells with equanimity and mindfulness", he enters and remains in theS third jhāna. And, having given up pleasure and pain, and with the disappearance of former gladness and sadness, he enters and remains in the fourth jhāna which is beyond pleasure and pain, and purified by equanimity and mindfulness.
[4.05][pts][olds] 'Four concentrative meditations (samādhi-bhāvanā). This meditation, when developed and expanded, leads to (a) happiness here and now (diṭṭhadhamma-sukha), (b) gaining knowledge-and-vision (ñāṇa-dassana-paṭilābha), (c) mindfulness and clear awareness (sati-sampajañña), and (d) the destruction of the corruptions (āsavānam khaya).
(a) How does this practice lead to happiness here and now? Here, a monk practises the four jhānas. 
(b) How does it lead to the gaining of knowledge-and-vision? Here, a monk attends to the perception of light (ālokasaññaɱ manasikaroti), he fixes his mind to the perception of day, by night as by day, by day as by night. In this way, with a mind clear and unclouded, he develops a state of mind that is full of brightness (sappabhāsaɱ cittaɱ).
(c) How does it lead to mindfulness and clear awareness? Here, a monk knows feelings as they arise, remain and vanish; he knows perceptions as they arise, remain and vanish; he knows thoughts (vitakkā) as they arise, remain and vanish.
(d) How does this practice lead to the destruction of the corruptions? Here, a monk abides in the contemplation of the rise and fall of the five aggregates of grasping (paāc'upādānakkhandesu udayabbay¢nupassī): "This is material form, this is its arising, this is its ceasing; these are feelings ... ; this is perception ... ; these are the mental formations ... ; this is consciousness, this is its arising, this is its ceasing."
 [4.06][pts][olds] 'Four boundless states. Here, a monk, with a heart filled with loving-kindness, pervades first one quarter, then the second, the third and the fourth. Thus he stays,  spreading the thought of loving-kindness above, below and across, everywhere, always with a heart filled with loving-kindness, abundant, magnified, unbounded, without hatred or ill-will. And likewise with compassion, sympathetic joy, and equanimity.
[4.07][pts][olds] 'Four formless jhānas. Here, a monk, by passing entirely beyond bodily sensations, by the disappearance of all sense of resistance and by non-attraction to the perception of diversity, seeing that space is infinite, reaches and remains in the Sphere of Infinite Space. And by passing entirely beyond the Sphere of Infinite Space, seeing that consciousness is infinite, he reaches and remains in the Sphere of Infinite Consciousness. And by passing entirely beyond the Sphere of Infinite Consciousness, seeing that there is no thing, he reaches and remains in the Sphere of No-Thingness. And by passing entirely beyond the Sphere of No- Thingness, he reaches and remains in the Sphere of Neither-Perception-Nor-Non-Perception.
[4.09][pts][olds] 'Four Ariyan lineages (ariya-vamsā). Here, a monk (a) is content with any old robe, praises such contentment, and does not try to obtain robes improperly or unsuitably. He does not worry if he does not get a robe, and if he does, he is not full of greedy, blind desire, but makes use of it, aware of [such] dangers and wisely aware of its true purpose. Nor is he conceited about being thus content with any old robe, and he does not disparage others. And one who is thus skilful, not lax, clearly aware and mindful,  is known as a monk who is true to the ancient, original (aggafiñe) Ariyan lineage. Again,
(b) a monk is content with any alms-food he may get. Again,
(c) a monk is content with any old lodging-place. And again,
(d) a monk, being fond of abandoning (pahāna), rejoices in abandoning, and being fond of developing (bhāvanā), rejoices in developing, is not therefore conceited ... And  one who is thus skilful, not lax, clearly aware and mindful, is known as a monk who is true to the ancient, original Ariyan lineage.
[4.10][pts][olds] 'Four efforts: The effort of (a) restraint (smɱvarapadhānaɱ), (b) abandoning (pahāna-p.), (c) development (bhāvanā-p.), (d) preservation (anurakkhaṇa-p.). What is (a) the effort of restraint? Here, a monk, on seeing an object with the eye, does not grasp at the whole or its details, striving to restrain  what might cause evil, unwholesome states, such as hankering or sorrow, to flood in on him. Thus he watches over the sense of sight and guards it (similarly with sounds, smells, tastes, tactile sensations, thoughts). What is (b) the effort of abandoning? Here, a monk does not assent to a thought of lust, of hatred, of cruelty that has arisen, but abandons it, dispels it, destroys it, makes it disappear. What is (c) the effort of development? Here, a monk develops the enlightenment. factor of mindfulness, based on solitude, detachment, extinction leading to maturity of surrender (vossagga-pariṇāmiɱ); he develops the enlightenment-factor of investigation of states, ... of energy, ... of delight, ... of tranquillity, ... of concentration, ... of equanimity, based on solitude, detachment, extinction, leading to maturity of surrender. What is (d) the effort of preservation? Here, a monk keeps firmly in his mind a favourable object of concentration which has arisen, such as a skeleton, or a corpse that is full of worms, blue-black, full of holes, bloated.
([4.13][pts][olds] 'Four factors of Stream-Attainment (sot¢pattiyangāni): association with good people (sappurisa-saɱseva), hearing the true Dhamma, thorough attention (yoniso manasikāra), practice of the Dhamma in its entirety (dhamm¢nudhamma-paṭipatti).
[4.14][pts][olds] 'Four characteristics of a Stream-Winner: Here, the Ariyan disciple is possessed of unwavering confidence in the  Buddha, thus: "This Blessed Lord is an Arahant, a fullylightened Buddha, endowed with wisdom and conduct, the Well-Farer, Knower of the worlds, incomparable Trainer of men to be tamed, Teacher of gods and humans, enlightened and blessed." (b) He is possessed of unwavering confidence in the Dhamma, thus: "Well-proclaimed by the Lord is the Dhamma, visible here and now, timeless, inviting inspection, leading onward, to be comprehended by the wise each one for himself." (c) He is possessed of unwavering confidence in the Saṅgha, thus: "Well-directed is the Saṅgha of the Lord's disciples, of upright conduct, on the right path, on the perfect path; that is to say the four pairs of persons, the eight kinds of men. The Saṅgha of the Lord's disciples is worthy of offerings, worthy of hospitality, worthy of gifts, worthy of veneration, an unsurpassed field of merit in the world." And (d) he is possessed of morality dear to the Noble Ones, unbroken, without defect, unspotted, without inconsistency, liberating, praised by the wise, uncorrupted, and conducive to concentration.
[4.18][pts][olds] 'Four stations of consciousness (viññāṇa-ṭṭhitiyo): Consciousness gains a footing either (a) in relation to materiality, with materiality as object and basis, as a place of enjoyment, or similarly in regard to (b) feelings, (c) perceptions or (d) mental formations, and there it grows, increases and flourishes.
Sangfti Sutta: Sutta 33 āi 230
 [4.21][pts][olds] 'Four kinds of progress: (a) painful progress with slow comprehension, (b) painful progress with quick comprehension, (c) pleasant progress with slow comprehension, (d) pleasant progress with quick comprehension.
 [4.22][pts][olds] 'Four more kinds of progress: progress with impatience (akkhamā paṭipadā), (b) patient progress (khamā p.), (c) controlled progress (damā p.), (d) calm progress (samā patipadā).
[4.24][pts][olds] 'Four ways of undertaking Dhamma: There is the way that is (a) painful in the present and brings painful future results (dukkha-vipākaɱ), (b) painful in the present and brings pleasant future results (sukha-vipākɱ), (c) pleasant in the present and brings painful future results, and (d) pleasant in the present and brings pleasant future results.
[4.28][pts][olds] 'Four ways of answering questions: the question (a) to be answered directly (ekaɱsa-vyākaraṇiyo pañho), (b) requiring an explanation (vibhajja-v. p.), (c) requiring a counter-question (paṭipucchā-v. p.), (d) to be set aside (ṭhāpanīyo pañha).
 [4.29][pts][olds] 'Four kinds of kamma: There is (a) black kamma with black result (kañha-vipākaɱ), (b) bright kamma with bright result (sukka-v.), (c) black-and-bright kamma with black-bright result (kaṇha-sukka v.), (d) kamma that is neither black nor bright (akaṇham-asukkaɱ), with neither black nor bright result, leading to the destruction of kamma.
[4.30][pts][olds] 'Four things to be realized by seeing (sacchikaraṇīyā dhammā): (a) former lives, to be realized by recollection (satiyā), (b) passing-away and rearising to be realized by the [divine] eye, (c) the eight deliverances, to be realized  with the mental body (kāyena), (d) the destruction of the corruptions, to be realized by wisdom.
[4.34][pts][olds] 'Four ties (ganthā): the "body-tie" (kāya-gantha) of hankering (abhijjhā), ill-will (vyāpāda), attachment to rite and ritual (sī1abbata-parāmāsa), dogmatic fanaticism (idaɱ-sacc¢bhinivesa).
 [4.37][pts][olds] 'Four ways of descent into the womb: (a) One descends into the mother's womb unknowing, stays there unknowing, and leaves it unknowing; (b) one enters the womb knowing, stays there unknowing, and leaves it unknowing; (c) one enters the womb knowing, stays there knowing, and leaves it unknowing; (d) one enters the womb knowing, stays there knowing, and leaves it knowing (as Sutta 28, verse 5).
[4.38][pts][olds] 'Four ways of getting a new personality (attabhāva-pati-lābhā): There is an acquisition of personality that is brought about by (a) one's own volition, not another's, (b) another's volition, not one's own, (c) both, (d) neither.
[4.39][pts][olds] 'Four purifications of offerings (dakkhiṇā-visuddhiyo): there is the offering purified (a) by the giver but not by the recipient, (b) by the recipient but not by the giver, (c) by neither,  (d) by both.
[4.47][pts][olds] 'Four persons: Here a certain man (a) torments himself (attan-tapo hoti), is given to self-tormenting, (b) torments others (paran-tapo hoti), ... (c) torments himself and others, ... (d) torments neither himself nor others ... Thereby  he dwells in this life without craving, released (nibbuto), cool, enjoying bliss, become as Brahmā (brahma-bhūtena).
[4.49][pts][olds] 'Four more persons: (a) living in darkness and bound for darkness (tamo tamapar¢yana), (c) living in darkness and bound for the light (tamo jotipar¢yana), (c) living in the light and bound for darkness, (d) living in the light and bound for the light.
[4.50][pts][olds] 'Four more persons: (a) the unshakeable ascetic (samaṇam-acalo), (b) the 'blue-lotus" ascetic, (c) the "white-lotus" ascetic, (d) the subtly-perfect ascetic (samaṇa-sukhumālo).
'These are the [sets of] four things which were perfectly proclaimed by the Lord ... So we should all recite them together. .. for the benefit, welfare and happiness of devas and humans.
 This is just the uprising of any thought that occurs.
 'Bases of Conduct' (RD).
 Knowledge in terms of conventional truth. Cf. n.224.
 Usually this means ordinary human food, but see n.1062.
 This refers to the food of the devas, sometimes also called kabalinkāra (cf. n.74). See BDic under Āhāra.
 This volition = kamma.
 Chanda is the most general word for 'desire, intention': see BDic.
 Cf. DN 1.1.17. DA's gloss here: 'oil, honey, ghee', etc., seems mysterious, and is not supported by the SubCommentary.
 See DN 28.10.
 By developing samādhi.
 Dhamma-padāni. Formally this is the plural of Dhammapada, the title of perhaps the most famous Buddhist scripture, but it is glossed as 'divisions of the Dhamma'.
 Omitting 'faith'- as the first of this group, normally of five.
 Truth, i.e. realisation of 'things as they really are'.
 Not 'to master self' (RO).
 Kamma that leads to enlightenment, when no more kamma will be created.
 'Making present to the eye'.
 Here sati is perhaps being used in its older, occasional sense of 'memory' rather than mindfulness: see n.629.
 See n.140.
 Factors present in the 'mental group' at any given moment.
 See n.913.
 Which tie mind (nāma) and body (rūpa) together. Gantha also means 'book' in the later language (see n.846).
 Kāya here means nāma-kāya 'mental body'.
 Yoniyo: 'wombs'. Further details are given in MN 12.
'As from rotting fish, etc.' (MN 12).
 Rebirth in the deva world (also as a Non-Returner).
 A new 'self' in another existence. Cf. n.220.
 See n.933.
 Cf. n.823.
 Like Upananda, whose conduct was not good, though he was still able to help others (DA).
 These curious designations are supposed to refer to the Stream-Winner, Once-Returner, Non-Returner, and Arahant respectively.