Craving and Action


revised on 2019-04-20


Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 28th November 1961

[Sayadaw based this talk on the Simile of the 6 Animals Discourse. The 6 animals are a snake, a crocodile, a bird, a dog, a jackal and a monkey. They represent the 6 internal sense bases – eye, ear, nose, tongue, body and mind respectively.]

If we are dragging away by the 6 animals, can you see yourself will come up from the planes of misery. Taking the 6 ropes of the animals, bind together making a knot and bind them to a strong post. And then you can’t pull away by them.

The mind can concentrate thoroughly on an object and becomes absorption (jhāna). Jhānapaccayo-jhāna conditions is talking about samādhi. Can be concentrated thoroughly on an object is jhāna (not let the mind goes away). With the rope of mindfulness (sati) binds the wild animal of the mind to the strong post of in-breath and out-breath (ānāpāna). And then this mind can’t run away to anywhere.

Therefore the Buddha taught the way of mindfulness of breathing (ānāpānasati). If you can’t herd the 6 animals (6 sense bases) and become has a bad living and dying. If you know how to herd them and they lay down quietely at the foot of the strong post. I’ll talk the way of doing it.

Contemplation of the mind is the best one (Sayadaw usually emphasized on cittānupassanā. Before I don’t understand why? He gave one or 2 reasons for these objects of the mind and didn’t explain it in details. But after listening many times of his talks with contemplation and many things emerge itself.

So it’s very important to read the suttas and teachings of some very wise teachers for many times and with contemplation develops wisdom faulty). Contemplate the impermanence of the seeing mind. It goes up to feeling. Noting the nature of why it so? The seeing (eye consciousness), contact (phassa) and feeling (vedana) are arising together.

If you can contemplate the impermanence of seeing consciousness and it becomes just seeing only. As a feeling it’s a neutral feeling (upekkha vedana). In this way after seeing, affection (taṇhā and clinging (upādānaṁ) not arise. Because you can make it lay down at the base of the mind (mana) post.

Insight practice is contemplation with the mind (mana). Without the contemplation D.A process is not cutting off. (for example, in the samatha practice). Raga (lust), dosa (anger) and moha (delusion) are cutting off is Nibbāna.

So it’s cutting off the D.A process. With the contemplation of the seeing mind, hearing mind, etc. and D.A process cut off in the beginning. If you can’t contemplate the thinking mind, with more thinking and more arriving to the planes of misery (For worldly thoughts and thinking).

The Buddha differentiated between taṇhā and kamma. If taṇhā not arises and kamma not arises. Therefore taṇhā becomes samudaya sacca – the cause of suffering. The Buddha also said; ragakkhayo, dosakkhayo, mohakkhayo nibbānaṁ. The destruction of lust, anger and delusion is Nibbāna. So destruction of taṇhā is Nibbāna.

It is not by destruction of kamma. What is taṇhā look like? In the Aṅguttara Nikāya, the Buddha said that taṇhā was like a tailor, connecting the pieces of cloth together. Therefore, if taṇhā exists will connect this life to next life. Without taṇhā and it cuts off. You might think kamma connects it. (Sayadaw gave an example of a man and a woman because of taṇhā, marry to each other and 2 families become connection).

Arahants without taṇhā can’t connect it (Later Buddhists have the view of without taṇhā and a noble being can come and go as he likes. Nibbāna is not a being, not a person, not an atta, not one is all and not all is one). But kamma is closer to the result. Kamma paccaya jati – kamma conditions birth.

Therefore between taṇhā and kamma, taṇhā is more fearful. Connection of dukkha are the power of taṇhā. Do kammas become nullified? If taṇhā is not ceasing and kammas are not become nullified. Because taṇhā is similar to someone collecting of kammas. A being life becomes end and taṇhā releases another kamma and lives are connecting without end.

Therefore taṇhā is more powerful than kamma. So the Buddha said that the destruction of taṇhā was Nibbāna. He was not saying of the destruction of kammas. Taṇhā governs and controls over kammas. With taṇhā exists and kammas will never finish. After the destruction of taṇhā and kammas become defunct kammas (ahosi kamma).

I’ll give you an evidence. (Told the story of Bodhisatta Vessandra). Lust had destroyed and became a Buddha. If not the results of his good kammas as Bodhisatta Vessandra would not finish. Therefore with the destruction of taṇhā kammas are destroyed.

If you are in fear of kamma and this is a fear of an animal. It’s like throwing a stone to a dog. You have to afraid of the cause and not the result. Taṇhā is the cause and kamma is the result. Cutting off the birth to the planes of misery is also cutting off the great-taṇhā (wrong view is called mahā-taṇhā).

To cut off the blissful rebirths (sugati) is to cut off small-taṇhā (cula-taṇhā is representing all the lust and greed). Throwing a stone to a dog is also with taṇhā (i.e. dosa and it comes from taṇhā). You have to correct yourself as the most fearful thing for me is taṇhā. It is not right if you complain about kamma when you are in dukkha. For example, a pearl diver dies in the sea is the cause of taṇhā or kamma? Therefore taṇhā is King of the Death. But you all are making friend with taṇhā. Making friendship with the murderer is very idiotic.

Therefore many kinds of dukkha arise by taṇhā (Samudaya). Insight meditation is for the cessation of taṇhā or kamma? In the sutta it mentioned as kilesemarinto – let kilesa dies. If you are condemning on the wrong person and kilesa will smile.

The mind has the nature of wanting to go anywhere. If you can make the animal of the mind to lay down at the base of the post and not become a bad living and dying. Whatever mind arises and contemplate its impermanence.

Ven. Sāriputta said that could observe one’s own mind would arrive to Nibbāna. Mind in sleep (i.e., bhavaṅga citta) doesn’t had the result of good or bad. We have to contemplate all the active minds. If not they will give the results. Changing the worldly mind into the noble mind (ariya mind).

By seeing impermanence and becomes ariya mind. Practice vipassanā is for the merits or changing the mind? These words are very important. If you can’t contemplate and only the worldly mind process is going on. Vipassanā mind arises is the ariya mind.

Contemplate the sotāpanna’s mind will become once returner (sakadagamin). Contemplate the sakadagamin’s mind will become non-returner (anāgāmin), etc. therefore changing the mind is important. Therefore not practice vipassana will never become an ariyan.


revised on 2019-04-23; cited from https://oba.org.tw/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=4091&p=35846#p35846 (posted on 2019-01-18)


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