Dukkha Exists and Dukkha Ceases
revised on 2019-07-25
Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 9th to 12th February 1961
(The following four talks were based on the Anurādha Sutta, SN.22.86 Anurādhasuttaṃ, PTS S iii 116)
Where did the beginning of this life come from? Saṅkhāra paccaya viññāṇaṁ: Volitional formation conditions consciousness (here rebirth consciousness). So, it started from the mind. Following it to the end; Dukkhakkhandhassa samudayo hoti—The whole mass of suffering arises. (see the twelve links of D. A. process which lead to Dukkha).
So, it’s the assemblage of dukkha. In the whole life whatever happens all of them are the assemblage of dukkha. It’s the arising of the assemblage of dukkha. Therefore, whatever is happening in the body and mind are the truth of dukkha (Dukkha Sacca).
They are arising and passing away that have to take it as dukkha (born and die all the time every moment). In all the twelve links of D. A. process, each of the links doesn’t arise itself alone but with other dhammas together.
(Every mind at least has the seven universal mental factors together with it. See the Abhidhamma, especially the conditional Relations—Paṭṭhāna). Therefore, it’s the assemblage of dukkha and neither a person nor a being. From birth to death is the process of dukkha. Ven. Anurādha was discerning impermanence but he couldn’t realize Nibbāna because he was hindered by wrong view.
Whatever arising is dukkha sacca and without dispel wrong view like this, the contemplation will not lead to the realization of Nibbāna. From the six senses doors whatever arises is only the assemblage of dukkha arising.
By knowing in this way, wrong view falls away. After that, comes the contemplation of impermanence. And then you will realize easily the Path and Fruition Knowledges.
Dispel wrong view first and later do vipassanā. If you don’t know the khandha arising process can’t dispel wrong view. Before dispelling wrong view, first have to know the khandha process.
Khandha process (D. A.) → dispel wrong view → vipassanā (insight practice) → Path and Fruit. Dukkha can’t arise without samudaya (cause).
For example, because of viññāṇaṁ samudaya (caused by consciousness), mind and body dukkha arise (viññāṇaṁ paccaya nāma-rūpam), etc.
Therefore in the whole saṁsāra, samudaya and dukkha processes are arising all the time. Neither personality nor a being is inside the natural process (natural phenomena of the process)
Here Samudaya not refer to lobha but for the causes. The causes of dukkha and the results of dukkha exist only. Neither a person nor a being arises.
Among the four Noble Truths; the two truths of Samudaya and dukkha are already explained. There are two more truths; magga and nirodha have to be explained. It needs a teacher to help.
Saṅkhāra nirodha → viññāṇaṁ nirodho → follow to the end; Dukkhakkhandhassa nirodho hoti—With the cessation of Volitional formation → consciousness ceases…… The whole mass of dukkha ceases. (see the twelve links of D. A. process)
The whole assemblage of dukkha ceases. It will only cease by contemplation and practice. Therefore, magga and nirodha; samudaya and dukkha are in pairs. Cessation by itself is naturally arising and ceasing. Contemplation of the cessation is ceasing by not wanting it. Can only contemplate by not wanting it, you’ll see Nirodha—the ending of Dukkha.
The physical body still exists but you can’t see the khandha process. It ceases in knowledge (mind). If khandha ceases then dukkha also ceases. If Khandhas are arising in serial, then dukkha also is arising. So, if you know the khandha process, the arising and ceasing of it and wrong view will fall away.
Whatever arising in the khandha is dukkha arising. If you can catch up with the arising dhamma, then you are contemplating of dukkha sacca. It becomes, the arising dhamma is dukkha sacca and the contemplation is magga sacca.
If you can’t catch it, it connects with dukkha sacca. Originally there is neither person nor being in it. I am helping you dispel wrong views which will send you to painful rebirths. Following with the knowing is getting the magga.
The reason saṁsāra was long for us was never had been followed dukkha sacca with knowledge before. Without it, Dukkhakkhandhassa samudayo hoti—the whole mass of suffering arises. With knowledge; Dukkhakkhandhassa nirodho hoti—the whole mass of dukkha ceases. So, I remind you, always follow with knowing. Asaṅkhata dhamma (unconditioned phenomenon) is Nibbāna.
The way to it is vipassanā. The reason we were wandering in saṁsāra was without vipassanā before. (Continued to talk on cittānupassanā) If seeing the arising mind, contemplate it. If you can’t catch it, then contemplate at feeling.
Again if you can’t, then contemplate on craving. Whatever mind arises from the six senses door, you have to contemplate. If you can’t, it will mix-up with the I-ness. For example, when itching mind arises and becomes I am itchy. It becomes identity view (sakkāya diṭṭhi). (Continued the story of Anurādha) About the question: Is a being still becoming after dying? Death is dying consciousness and birth is rebirth-linking consciousness (paṭisandhi viññāṇa). There is no being in it. It’s dukkha sacca at the beginning; also in the middle and at the end dukkha sacca. There is no being for dying and becoming. This kind of question the Buddha never answered because it was asking with wrong view. No need to answer for it. In that way wrong view is falling away.
Wrong views fall away by knowledge is cūḷa-sotāpanna. Have the same right view as sotāpanna). It’s not falling away by contemplation. It is easy to get the Path and Fruition Knowledges after falling away by knowledge with contemplation.
One of the unwholesome roots is falling apart if wrong view is destroyed. Anurādha himself didn’t know how to exactly answer the real meaning of the question, he himself had wrong view and doubt.
(In the beginning of the talk) You should do the vipassanā contemplation only after dispelling wrong view by knowledge; because vipassanā contemplation is working with the paramattha dhamma (ultimate phenomena).
Everything arise from the six senses doors of mind and body process; neither person nor living being exists. For example, from the eye door eye consciousness arises, good or bad feeling, like or dislike taṇhā, etc. … no phenomenon has any person or living being. Person or being is only exists in speech and not in reality.
(continued the Anurādha’s story) The Buddha answered to his questions posed by other sect, and first cleared away his wrong view and doubt. With regarding to the five khandhas, using the three universal characteristics and explained to him in the Q and A forms. Whatever arising from the khandhas; all are anicca, dukkha and anatta dhammas and including neither person nor living being.
If wrong view and doubt are not destroyed whatever rebirth is taken, the seed of hell will follow behind as latent tendency. Even reach toward the celestial and Brahma god realms the seed of hell follows together there. In everyday life people are looking after their bodily needs, it seems to have compassion for them themselves.
You must destroy wrong view and doubt if you really have pity on yourself. Without the seed of hell falls off, you have to carry your burdened khandha as chicken, pig and cow. Becoming a horse is better than a pig because you have to work with your shoulder and back (toiling for human); as a pig serving with your flesh (eaten by human). In hell, it’s worse than a pig; suffering alive in hell and not being able to die. Pig dies only once but the hell being dies instantly and is born instantly. It continues until the kammas are finished. (The last part of the talk had strong saṁvega)
The duty of the Buddha and sāvakas were explained about the khandha and its process. The duty of the Buddha was teaching people about the way of practice and how to do it. Your responsibility is practicing to end dukkha.
Talking about how to do it, I have to point out the process of the khandha—D. A. process. You can cut it if you want; otherwise, also up to you if you don’t want; then just stay with dukkha. Dukkhakkhandhassa samudayo hoti— the whole mass of suffering will arise. You have to do the practice from the vipassanā knowledge to the Path Knowledge.
Even by practice if you can’t cut it off in this life, and in next life you’ll sure about it. I can give you the guarantee. Why? Because near the end of his life the Buddha told about this to Subhadda (see the Mahāparinibbāna Sutta, DN 16). But you have to practice without fail. Don’t doubt about it.
It’s like the example of building fire by rubbing the bamboos. To become hot is our duty. The fire to come out is dhamma duty. It becomes hot fire will come out. With contemplation and seeing impermanence, wrong view of permanence can’t arise. By killing diṭṭhi taṇhā, upādāna and kamma, and no future birth will come into existence. Without the cause of taṇhā, upādāna and kamma the future result of birth can’t arise. Saccanulomika Ñāṇa—knowledge according to the truth is the knowledge of seeing impermanence.
Impermanence is dukkha sacca and knowing is ñāṇa. Therefore this is the knowledge, in accordance with the truth. Whatever arises in the khandhas contemplate as dukkha arises and dukkha passes away.
Knowing them is saccanulomika ñāṇa. After that continue the contemplation until become disenchantment and the ending of it. The ending of dukkha is Nibbāna.
revised on 2019-07-25; cited from https://oba.org.tw/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=4049&p=35706#p35706 (posted on 2019-01-09)
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