Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 4th September 1961
The Buddha taught the ways to develop our practice without giving up. Before our practice need to contemplate ageing and sickness are near to us. The danger of death is also not far away (Actually sickness and death can happen to anyone at anytime.)
They are the cause of taṇhā. Only path factors can overcome it. Therefore we have to try hard to develop the path factors. There are 4 persons can get the path knowledge. They are; ① Difficult practice and slow realization, ② Difficult practice and quick realization ③ Easy practice and slow realization. ④ Easy practice and quick realization (From Aṅguttara Nikāya).
All of them can get to the Path Knowledge. But their ways of practice are different. You have to decide by yourself in which group you are in. Nothing to be in low spirit. All of them get the Path and Fruit Knowledges. The differences are only in slow and quick realizations. Why the first person has difficulty in practice? In contemplation of impermanence kilesas come in between them. It take times to move them out. With thick kilesa and the practice is difficult.
Faith (saddhā) is not sharp, effort (viriya) is not strong, mindfulness (sati) is not sharp, samādhi is not concentrate enough on the objects and wisdom is weak. If the spiritual faculties are weak have difficulties in the practice (The 5 spiritual faculties are just mentioned above). And also become slow in the realization.
In short to say, vipassanā wisdom is not sharp. Regard to the first person the Buddha said that he had a lot of kilesa and faculties were weak. The reason kilesa comes in is during the contemplations of impermanence, the mind moves to home or to somewhere else, etc.
It takes time to dispel the kilesa and difficulty in the practice. The way of correction is contemplating the impermenece of whatever kilesa comes in. In this way difficulty go away and knowledge becomes sharp. Ehi-passiko-Every dhamma invites you to come and contemplate.
From the first to become the 4th person. If you can contemplate kilesa and knowledge is become closer. The reason knowledge (ñāṇa) not sharp is between the knowledges have a big gap. Ñāṇas closer to each other and faculties become mature. Vipassanā knowledges are becoming closer and closer. With more contemplations and ñāṇa becomes sharper. (So a lot of contemplations and practices are important). The first person becomes the fourth person.
The 2nd person has more kilesa and his knowledge is sharp. So if he contemplates the impermanence of all kilesas come in, will become the fourth person. If overcome kilesa always has the quick result. Without a teacher’s corrections, blame on the pāramīs and giving up is a big mistake.
As an example, Ven. Sāriputta’s disciple, the goldsmith was with the Buddha’s instruction and had a quick realization. The ways of instruction made its differences. Encounter a good teacher is has pāramīs. Can contemplate whatever comes is not difficult practice.
Kilesa comes in between the practice is for the continuation of D.A process. With contemplation and not continue the process. (Sayadaw mentioned that the goldsmith was Buddha’s disciple, only achieved realization with his help, and not by Ven. Sāriputta).
D.A process cut off is Nibbāna. Every time it arises and can contemplate is closer to Nibbāna. Taṇhā, upadānā and kamma are extinct in Nibbāna. The 3rd person has lesser kilesa. Therefore he is not difficult in practice. His slow realization is the knowledges are arising slowly. Seeing impermenece is far enough. This slowness comes with the relaxation in his effort. Must increase the effort.
Not difficult means practice in a relaxed way (This point is very important). With strong effort and contemplation impermanence of whatever arises. If death comes earlier will be a great loss. Reflect in this way put great effort in your practice. Even to people have less kilesa still it will come in.
Our life span is short. Only has the life span of each inhalation and each exhalation. You all prefer the 4th person. Your pāramīs are including respectively in all these 4 persons (Has connections with one of them). But with the help of a teacher becomes the 4th. There were more 4th persons during the time of the Buddha. Nowadays there are more first persons. Don’t forget the teaching until your death.
cited from https://oba.org.tw/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=4084&p=35753#p35753 (posted on 2019-01-14)
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