The Four Noble Truths
revised on 2021-03-26
Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 6th to 25th December 1957
[Sayadaw gave the extensive talks on the four Noble Truths with their 16 meanings. Each truth has four meanings. These were delivered in Mandalay City. Some disciples transcribed into books and had two volumes. I had made these notes from the tapes directly. It was not complete translation and just for personal use.
Every Buddhist should know the four Noble Truths to become a true Buddhist, especially on the meanings of dukkha sacca because in some suttas the Buddha himself mentioned that all Buddhas had arisen in the world (also for the future Buddhas) to teach dukkha and the ending of dukkha.
Understanding of dukkha intellectually is also very important. We have to use it in everyday life for contemplation; for the development of love and compassion for oneself and others; to have sense of urgency (saṁvega) for transcending dukkha.
Another important point I want to clear about is Sayadaw’s teaching on wrong views. Actually, every true Buddhist teaching was the Buddha’s teaching and not our own. In one of his talks even Sayadaw emphasized it. He said his teachings were not his views and ideas. If they were then they became adhamma, which meant not the teachings of the Buddha. It misrepresented the Buddha that the results of them were not good.
All wrong views come out form the identity view – sakkāya diṭṭhi. Some are serious ones and some not, for example, the fixed wrong views (niyata micchā-diṭṭhi). (Here "fixed" means the results of these wrong views are rebirths in hells.). These are: akiriya diṭṭhi – non-action, ahetuka diṭṭhi – non-cause and natthika diṭṭhi – non-causes and non- effects.
People believe in the law of kamma have the basic right view. But they also have identity view. It’s a type of wrong view hinder wisdom development. People have identity view can commit the five heavy kammas which leading to hells. Have identity view but also believe in kamma and doing wholesome kamma can take rebirths in the planes of bliss (sugati).
So people have identity view and believe in law of kamma can create wholesome and unwholesome kammas which can lead beings to the rebirths in bliss and misery. Here Sayadaw emphasized to destroy sakkāya diṭṭhi which is the seed of rebirths, both bliss and misery. It depends on what kinds of kamma we create. At least becoming a Buddhist should have basic right view – believe in the law of kamma.]
- Dukkha Sacca – The Noble Truth of Dukkha.
- Pīḷanāṭṭha (Pīḷana-aṭṭha) – Oppressive
[ The first meaning of the truth of suffering is pīḷanāṭṭha which is oppressive. The mind and body oppress, torture and torment the owner who attaches to them. For discerning of their nature the Buddha gave the analogy of a mother gave birth to a twin to represent the mind and the body. The mind baby was without hands and legs, and also with mental disability like a lunatic. So the baby was physically and mentally handicapped. The Buddha was very skillful in using metaphors, analogies and similes to teach people.
The body baby was with blind eyes and had the disease of stomach problem. Why the Buddha gave these analogies? These twins were very similar to the mind and body. The mind cannot move by itself and has to depend on the body. So it had to be without hands and feet. The mind is also polluted with defilements and becomes abnormal. This is a crazy mind and like a lunatic.
The body cannot see without the mind. So it was blind. It had to depend on the mind. The physical body was made up by rūpa – form or matter. Rūpa means rūppati – to be deformed or afflicted, disturbed, oppressed, broken. Rūpa is so called because it undergoes and imposes alternation owing to adverse physical conditions. It is deformed by cold, heat, hunger, thirst, flies, mosquitoes, wind, sunburn, etc. So it is like a disease. Therefore the body baby had stomach disease.
For a mother, there are a lot of sufferings and difficulties to look after these two children all the time. Here the mother is someone who had and owned the mind-body (beings). Outside the Buddha's teachings, hermits or spiritual people were practising jhānas, both material and immaterial jhānas. Some disgusted with the mind born as non-percipient beings that had only body and no mind. Some disgusted with the body born as beings without the body and only mind. Both groups missed the point and could not transcend dukkha. Nowadays human beings are with over greed and selfishness and polluting the physical world including one's own body and the environments. Therefore the oppressive nature of mind and body become more evident. These are oppressive dukkha created by human beings un-necessarily. Human beings are becoming so crazy that take it as a pleasure and enjoyment (so silly).
In this talk Mogok Sayadaw mentioned about the whole picture with humour. By contemplating the oppressive nature of mind-body process in daily life can lead to strong saṁvega with the khandha. ]
There are two knowledges: anubodha ñāṇa and pativedha ñāṇa. By listening dhamma talks and study books – the suttas, and practice in accordance with the knowledge from the study and seeing impermanence. This is anubodha ñāṇa. Pativedha is penetrating the truth of dukkha. (Sayadaw talked about the analogy of the twin babies to elaborate the meaning of pīḷanāṭṭha.)
- Saṅkhatāṭṭha (Saṅkhata-aṭṭha) – Conditions by Craving – Taṇhā
Mind and body are conditioning by taṇhā. Both of them are oppressed by taṇhā, the carpenter – the builder of the khandhas. In the beginning Sayadaw mentioned two qualities for enlightenment. These are listening to the sacca dhamma and wise attention (yoniso).
By listening sacca dhamma and kilesas become dry out. It’s like after drying out a wet log in the sun and burning it. After listening to dhamma talk and practicing with right attention, kilesas were brunt up. At the time of seeing impermanence is with the five factors of contemplative knowledge. At the time of seeing the ending of dukkha is with the eight path factors.
This is seeing Nibbāna. (Sayadaw referred these points to Paṭṭhāna Pali). Saṅkhāre vipassanti and Nibbānaṁ maggassa phalassa — seeing the formation with insight and seeing Nibbāna with the Path and Fruition Knowledges.
Pīḷanāṭṭha is mind and body which oppress the owner (The active part). Saṅkhatāṭṭha is mind and body which are oppressed by taṇhā (The passive part). Beings get the khandhas are conditioned and controlled by taṇhā. (Sayadaw gave a very good example of the ball player and the ball. Taṇhā is like the ball player and the ball is the khandha).
- Santāpāṭṭha (Santāpa-aṭṭha) – Burning with Taṇhā Fire
[Khandhas are always burning with the fire of taṇhā. This was a very uplifting talk. Sayadaw emphasized that enlightenment was not difficult. Only need to listen sacca dhamma, wise attention (yoniso) and bhāvetabba – observe anicca continuously.
He already sent disciples on the half way. The other half was the duties of the disciples. Now was the opportunity for enlightenment. Therefore, they should not waste the chances here. If they missed it, and it would never come back again for them. Sayadaw’s emphasis on this point was very important and had profound meaning in itself. To have a human birth is quite difficult because most beings are wandering in the painful existences (apāyabhūmi). Even if the merits of wholesome dhamma could bring beings back to the human world, it is very difficult to have such a rare opportunity again. ]
Bhāvetabba – Developing means, for example, of the four satipaṭṭhāna you can contemplate any one of them. Only seeing the kāya – body, vedanā – feeling, etc. is not developing yet. Seeing their both arising and passing away is called bhāvetabba. It's not tīraṇa pariññā if only seeing kāya, vedanā, etc.; it's only ñāta pariññā. It is not yet tīraṇa pariññā by only seeing that much with contemplation.
You have to discern impermanence. The real existence is only impermanence. (Here Sayadaw mentioned how to listen Dhamma. In the time of the Buddha, people got enlightenments by listening to the talks and at the same time observing the khandhas; and they realized Nibbāna at the end of the talks.) You shouldn’t underestimate yourselves because many Buddhas had arisen in the past before. (i.e., we had met with some of the Buddhas.)
Now you are born as human beings in a Buddhist country, and also have the chances to listen sacca dhamma. You only need the development by contemplation. Now is the best chance for ending dukkha. If you miss this chance will like a pebble has been fallen into the water and never comes out or rises up again. Also it’s like food come near to one’s mouth and suddenly falls to the ground.
The nature of the khandha is to torture and for torture (active and passive). For these purposes we all have it. The khandha is always burning with fire (santāpāṭṭha). It’s the fuel and 1500 kilesas are fire. Eradicate kilesa is like extinguishing the fire of kilesa.
Extinguished kilesa is Sa-upādisesa nibbānadhātu – Nibbāna element with residue or kilesa parinibbāna – the quenching of defilement. The arahant after dies is like the fuel become finished. After consuming of the fuel (both fire and fuel) is anupādisesa nibbānadhātu – khandha parinibbāna – the quenching of the continuance of aggregates.
(Sayadaw gave the example of mind/body process were like fire and fuel, burning and substituting again and again never end)
It’s more evident in hell beings. They are suffering by burning and disappearing, reappearing and burning again and again until their unwholesome kammas are finished. (Sayadaw in one of his talks mentioned some petas (hungry ghosts) had a very tiny hole of mouth and always in thirst. But they never die until their kammas were finished. They were alive with kamma-āhāra – foods of kamma.
So, kamma is one of the acinteyya dhamma – inconceivable. Four inconceivable dhammas were mentioned by the Buddha.
Later some Buddhists (may be philosophers and scholars) were thinking about the origin of the world; instead of practicing for the transcending of dukkha, they became philosophers. They mixed the Buddha Dhamma with worldly matters)
- Vipariṇāmāṭṭha (Vipariṇāma-aṭṭha) – Changing Dukkha
Torture by changing from ageing, sickness and death. The five khandhas have the nature of change. Starting from the beginning of getting the khandha and ageing and death come with it. It always has these two nooses of ropes to hang us.
Whatever khandha you get has these two nooses. Another example is in the timber factory. The ageing of the iron chain (jara) pulls the timber trunk (khandha) on the death of saw machine (maraṇa) and cuts it into pieces.
(Sayadaw continued to talk about the process of the practice with sacca ñāṇa, kicca ñāṇa and kata ñāṇa). When arriving at kata ñāṇa, dukkha is ended, and no khandha is left behind. It’s not nothingness. No dukkha left but sukha exists.
The Buddha in the Udāna Pali said that Nibbāna was atthi – presence or really existed. (Sayadaw gave the example of an ulcer. It’s cured with treatment. First, it is painful / dukkha with the ulcer; and after, it is happiness/sukha without it. So it’s not nothingness but has sukha.). Another example is fire and heat. Fire is like kilesa and heat is dukkha without fire and heat is not nothingness. It becomes cool and peaceful.
- Samudaya Sacca – The Noble Truth of the Cause of Dukkha.
- Āyūhanāṭṭha (Āyūhana-aṭṭha) – Creating or Generating Dukkha.
(This is a penetrative talk on taṇhā (samudaya). It gives someone fearful and disenchantment on taṇhā. Taṇhā is the culprit keeping all the results of kamma in saṁsāra to give vipakavattas (resultant round of existence). In the Sutta Nipāta the Buddha said, by not understanding on taṇhā and beings were roaming in the round of rebirths. If penetrate taṇhā will realize Nibbāna.)
(Sayadaw said, for someone the Buddha had arisen for him or not have to know in the following way). According to the D.A. process, vedanā paccaya taṇhā – feeling conditions craving. This is so someone is not in practice that the Buddha had not arisen for him. Vedanā nirodha taṇhā nirodho – craving ceases with the cessation of feeling. This is so someone with the practice that the Buddha had arisen for him The differences between faith (saddhā) and wisdom (paññā) are here. The Buddha said, in all of the dhamma wisdom was the best because it could penetrate everything.
I have to talk about the evil things of taṇhā. With this and not wanting it will arise. We are educating for taṇhā to arise in worldly matters. From parents to children are in this way.
(Sayadaw called human beings as the species pushing down someone over the cliff. If we observe the world today, the power of taṇhā is stronger than ever. They are always talking about money and sensual pleasures in all media; never talking about moral issues which make human really a human).
Human begins are always making companion with taṇhā; sometimes with greed (lobha), sometimes with hatred (dosa) and sometimes with delusion (moha). Someone who does not practice always takes taṇhā as companion.
Āyūhanāṭṭha (Āyūhana-aṭṭha) means taṇhā always making arrangements for living beings not to separate forever from dukkha objects and matters. You will wander in saṁsāra if you don’t know about taṇhā. You will realize Nibbāna if you know it. Even spreading loving kindness (metta bhavana), taṇhā can come in for making trouble.
- Nidānāṭṭha (Nidāna-aṭṭha) – taṇhā is the Cause of Dukkha.
It’ll give every kind of dukkha to living beings who accept taṇhā. Vedanā nirodha taṇhā nirodho – with the cessation of feeling and craving also ceases. Seeing feeling not exists and craving not arises. This is the arising of the five path factors.
Taṇhā does not arise because of maggaṅga arise; and vipassanā is the cessation of taṇhā by which is not arising. The five path factors are called the forerunner of knowledge (pubbabhāga magga). The last knowledge is called the supramundane path knowledge and it completes with the eight path factors.
- Saṁyogāṭṭha (Saṁyoga-aṭṭha) – Fetters or Yokes
Taṇhā (samudaya) is entering a person to fetter or yoke him with dukkha like an ox. Taking anyone of the khandhas with clinging as I, I am and mine becomes identity view – sakkāya diṭṭhi. [Sayadaw talked about the vipassanā processes and vipassanā ñāṇa (seeing anicca) effect on kilesas.]
Vipassanā ñāṇa only suppress the coarse and mild defilements like the jhāna samādhi. Only the Path Knowledge eradicates the latent defilments – anusaya. Taṇhā yokes the person with heavy loads like an ox. (Sayadaw talked about how taṇhā effects human begins in society with humour.)
- Palibodhāṭṭha (Palibodha-aṭṭha) – Hinder or Disturb
Taṇhā samudaya hinders or disturbs a person to free from dukkha. In the beginning Sayadaw talked to people not to cling to the five khandhas as this is me, this I am and this is mine. Mind/body are arising by conditions and causes. Contemplate oneself and other things as suññāta (emptiness) and then you'll get the suññāta ñāṇa. He based on the sutta from Sutta Nipāta, Mogharāja’s Question to Buddha, and it was about suññāta. Palibodha means hinder the path to Nibbāna.
Taṇhā prefers the birth, ageing and death of saṁsāra. And it hinders path and fruit. In the Dhammapada, the Buddha compared taṇhā to a mother and avijjā to a father. (This analogy by the Buddha was profound and penetrative with contemplation.)
3.Nirodha Sacca – The Noble Truth of the Cessation of Dukkha.
- Nissaraṇāṭṭha (Nissaraṇa-aṭṭha) – Escaping from Dukkha.
Escape from the three rounds of existence—vattas. These are: kilesa, kamma and vipāka vattas. Sayadaw gave a very strong saṁvega talk, and sometimes it was humorous. It is a place frees from the three rounds of existence.
Only we understand beings are revolving around the three vattas and wanting to escape from them. Therefore first, I’ll show how beings are in the endless cycle around the three vatta. Vatta – means a circle, revolving like a ball is called vatta.
(Sayadaw in a talk gave a simile of a ball player and a ball represented taṇhā and khandha. He explained the three vattas by using D.A. process. His demonstration of a being tortured and oppressed by three vatts was quite interesting).
Beings have to suffer until their kilesas and kammas vattas are finished. I’ll talk the benefits of escaping from vattas. Living beings are running around in circle, becoming nausea and dizziness. But they are not tired and happy about with it.
After beings are dying and dying and changing heads to heads (He gave some stories of changing heads. Some people only know about the evolution but not de-evolution. They taught us that men developed from monkeys. But they don’t know men also can be in de-evolution or degenerate into monkeys. Both are including in the law of kamma. Now human beings are at the point of de-evolution stage).
People don’t want to be free from dukkha. There are three crazy types for those three vattas: rāgāumattaka – lunatics of lust, dosāunmattaka – lunatics of ager and mohāumattaka – lunatics of delusion.
- Vivekāṭṭha (Viveka-aṭṭha) – Seclusion
It has the secluded nature. They are in disturbances with the impermanence if you look at mind and body with ñāṇa eyes. It will be very clear about them with the practice (i.e., saṅkhata and asankhatā or mind/body and Nibbāna).
If you practice with the contemplation of feeling and it includes cittānupassanā and dhammānupassanā. The life span of a feeling is only ① and ②. At ① is arising and at ② is vanishing. It’s during the one mind moment.
Contemplation of feeling arises in the body and the contemplative mind (ñāṇa) arises at manāyatana (mind base). At the time of contemplation will see its non-existence. Vipassanā has to be made effort. You have to think and to be mindful. It needs a lot of effort in the practice to see impermanence.
Therefore, you have to work hard and persevere in the matter of seeing Nibbāna. When in Nibbāna it’s not tired. At the time of seeing anicca is seeing disturbances. Free from disturbances is Nibbāna. With vipassanā knowledge (ñāṇa) becoming more mature, you see anicca in details with more disturbances.
Don’t say about seeing and knowing Nibbāna. If you don’t see the disturbances of impermanence even can’t speculate about it (i.e., nibbāna). It’s better to see a lot of impermanence and have strong disenchantment with it. With these and rise up to the knowledge of not wanting it. At the time, if you can make the decision – as it’s real dukkha, all the impermanences come to an end with a blip!
Because of the disappearance of defilements and impermanences also disappear. The Path Knowledge is seeing the no disturbances. It is not the mind cutting off kilesas. It’s the eight Path Factors doing the job. The mind is including as co-nascence conditions – sahajātapaccayo.
Don’t take Nibbāna as seeing the nothingness. The Nibbāna — death of kilesa, has the nature of good looking at it. The nature of good staying only comes with the passing away of the arahant (i.e., parinibbāna;we should not take it literally. Although the arahant's mind is pure, he still has the burdened body. Parinibbāna is the complete cessation of the five burdened kandha with complete freedom.) If you are looking at whichever place of the 31 realms of existence, you will only find disturbances with anicca.
These are the causes of defilements (kilesas). It’s free from the disturbances of kilesa that Nibbāna is clear away of all other things. In Nibbāna there is not the mind and body as we have. If you ask; “It is the mind or the body?”
The answer is mind dhamma (nāma dhamma). It’s not the kind of nāma (mind) dhamma which has the arising, presence and dissolution (uppāda, ṭhiti and bhaṅga).
It’s the place where the enlightened yogis are frequently taking enjoyment in it. This is the place where the dhamma of Nibbāna is leading there. These dhammas have to incline towards it. Our mind (nāma) has to incline towards the objects (i.e., the worldly mind). The other minds (i.e., supramundane mind or fruitions) have to incline towards Nibbānic mind (nāma).
Someone entering into the attainment of cessation – nirodha samāpatti or cessation of perception and feeling – saññāvedayitanirodha can incline his/her mind to Nibbāna for seven days. The nāma dhamma of Nibbāna and the fruition knowledge are arising together without separation. (Sayadaw gave the following example).
In the center of Mandalay Zay – cho Bazzar there is a big clock tower. All the cars come from whichever directions have to look at the clock there. It’s like this clock. In the same way yogis experienced Nibbāna and it was impossible for them not to see it again. It’s the best of the best. All ariyas if they have free of time and always inclining towards it.
Why is that? Because it gives you comfort. Therefore you can call it happiness – sukha (The Buddha defined it as the Supreme Happiness. Transcend all worldly happiness including jhāna). All worldly matters give you dukkha but Nibbāna has the characteristic of happiness, peace and joy.
Is Nibbāna has the body or not? If, it has the body must has to be changed and perished. If without the body and how can it stays put? It has no body, no form, no shape and no image. By looking at it is happy and peaceful. This is someone still has the body (still alive with the body).
It is a very special place. Nibbāna is the noblest thing. The worldlings also ought to like it that is without dukkha It’s the best thing for the Buddha. Therefore there are no other things better than that.
- Asaṅkhatāṭṭha (Asaṅkhata-aṭṭha) – Unconditioned.
(Sayadaw explained saṅkhata dukkha and asaṅkhata Nibbāna in a very skillful way. He could talk about conditioned dhamma in worldly life with penetration. So, we can see the foolishness and stupidity of human beings. Conditioned phenomena are really dukkha. But all living beings are like a blind elephant pushing blindly through the very thick and dangerous forest. It’s quite a tragedy.)
Nibbāna is free from continuous conditioning, and originally stable nature. Everything under the conditioning ends up with dissolution. Only you understand the conditioned nature and prefer the unconditioned. The five khandhas survive and arise with the conditions of kamma, citta, utu and āhāra (action, mind, temperature and food).
Therefore the conditions are masters and the five khandhas are slaves. Someone can clear away saṅkhata dhamma will see asaṅkhata. This is looking at its nature. Nibbāna has the nature of peacefulness. The Path factors look at it also peaceful because it has no kilesas. This is arriving at Nibbāna with inclining. The real arriving is only becoming an arahant and passing away.
At once time the Buddha with a monk ascended on a mountain and both of them were looking down to the very deep cliff. The monk exclaimed as it was very terrifying. But the Buddha responded to him as not knowing the truth was more terrifying than that. This only died once but if you didn’t know the truth would die again and again.
(And then Sayadaw explained about many different types of khandha dukkha came from the conditioning. Every Buddhist should understand about dukkha intellectually and reflect on it very often. If not our knowledge on dukkha is still on the animal level.
Understand rightly on dukkha develop love, compassion and wisdom. In the commentary mentioned three kinds of dukkha. There only took saṅkhāra dukkha as paramattha dukkha. Except dukkha-dukkhatā, the other two — saṅkhāra-dukkhatā and viparinama-dukkhatā can be used as conventional and ultimate dukkhas.
Here Sayadaw was using the saṅkhāra dukkha as the conventional dukkha to explain many things in life. It gives the sense of strong saṁvega.)
This body is not good, so we have to make correction of it. Every day we have to condition it in many different ways. Even we take these things as a pleasure (the power of ignorance). Today I’ll talk about the quenching – nibbuta, nature of Nirodha Sacca. (He gave the example from the Aggivaccha Sutta)
Nibbāna dhamma is like the fuels finished and the fire extinguished. No khandhas left behind (both mind and body). It’s only staying with quenching. The cycle of saṁsāra is with fuels and fire going together. Therefore the nature of Nibbāna is quenching and clear (Because of no aggregates). Jhānas are peaceful but has body, so not clear away with things.
- Amatāṭṭha (Amata-aṭṭha) – Deathless
With the khandhas every living being brings with them ageing, sickness and death. They are like torturers and the khandhas are sufferers. Beings are always burning with eleven kinds of fire: lobha, dosa, moha, ageing, sickness, death, soka, parideva, dukkha, domanassa and upāyāsa. Nibbāna has no ageing and death, and always exists.
Khandhas are like a poisonous tree. The nature of ageing and death poisons exists together with the khandhas. The oppressed khandhas and the oppressive dhammas are going together. (Here Sayadaw talked about feelings in an extensive way).
Living beings are sinking in the pleasant feelings (Like the ants are sinking and sticking in honey). Everyday beings are doing things for enjoying in pleasant feelings. Feeling is like the poison and a murderer. If you looking at the D.A. process and will find that because of feeling and taṇhā, upādāna and kamma come to be.
(Sayadaw ended his talk with the contemplation of feeling). Seeing impermanence of feeling is seeing your own death. After comes disenchantment, its ending and escape from death. It’s the deathless of Nibbāna – Amatāṭṭha.
- Magga Sacca – The Truth of the Path
- Niyyātāṭṭha (Niyyāti-aṭṭha) – Escape from the three Vattas, and leading to Nibbāna.
Dhamma carries someone from the three vattas towards Nibbāna. For this purpose Sayadaw was using Vedanānupassanā in practice.
Contemplate to see impermanence every time when feeling arises. It's free from the three vattas while seeing impermanence every time. The contemplative mind (maggaṅga) arises at the mind base (manāyatana). Taṇhā (craving) is a mental factor (cetasika). Also it arises at the mind base. Every time ñāṇa comes in and taṇhā can’t arise and free from the vattas.
First, seeing impermanence is a cūḷa-sotāpanna and will be safe from one life to the planes of misery. But at near death still āsanna kamma (death proximate kamma) can come in. So near death if you can contemplate impermanence is not a problem.
(So, near death still can maintain the power of anicca is not becoming a problem for dying. For the maintenance of anicca we need a regular practice. Therefore, Sayadaw encouraged disciples to practice until its safety, i.e., becoming a sotāpanna.)
Continue the contemplation to become disenchantment. Defilements die away if the knowledge of not wanting arises. With the cessation of feeling kilesa vatta disappears.
Sayadaw gave the example of cutting a tree. Yathābhūta Ñāṇa cuts the tree at the top points, Nibbida Ñāṇa near the base. And the Path Knowledge is digging out the root.
- Hetu-aṭṭha – Straight towards Nibbāna
Magga Sacca is the straight forwards dhamma and Samudaya Sacca (taṇhā is the crooked dhamma. With the comparison of both will understand them. With the straight forwards dhamma and going straightly will arrive to the place. With the crooked dhamma can’t arrive there. By knowing the straight forwards one and can let go of the crooked one.
(Sayadaw using the monkey trap to express the cunning of taṇhā). A monkey out of greed was taking the foods in a trap. It was set up by a hunter with pitch inside. Because of that the monkey’s two hands, two legs and the head were sticking with the pitch, inside the trap. In the same way the five khandhas are sticking with the pitch of taṇhā.
- Dassanāṭṭha (Dassana-aṭṭha) – Vision
The path leads to the vision of Nibbāna and penetrate the four Noble Truths (Sayadaw dispelled wrong view and unclosed the vision of Nibbāna with the Naked Ascetic Kassapa Sutta). I’ll explain the vision of Nibbāna. If become knowledge – vijjā, it is not only seeing Nibbāna, but also the Four Noble Truth at the same time. Sammādiṭṭhi – The eyes of knowledge is better than the eyes of the Brahma gods.
For seeing the four Noble Truths is very difficult. Brahma gods can see things clearly with their divine eyes although they can’t penetrate it. If the practice not becomes the vision of Nibbāna (dassanāṭṭha) and it can still fall into the dangers of misery. (Sayadaw gave some examples of these dangers and urged his disciples to practice hard).
After it becomes vision – dassanāṭṭha and will has stability without changes. You are only going upwardly without falling down again.
- Adhipateyyāṭṭha (Adhipateyya-aṭṭha) – Predominance, Governing
Unshakable – after enlightenments; sīla, samādhi and paññā become adhisīla, adhisamādhi and adhipaññā (higher virtuous behavior, higher concentration and wisdom). Nobody can comes and destroy it. There were many stories in the time of the Buddha, Mara – the evil one had tested his disciples and never succeeded. It will become adhipateyyāṭṭha only by seeing Nibbāna which is the ending of dukkha. It still can be fallen apart with ordinary sīla, samādhi and paññā when encountering with the coarse objects.
(For the adhisamādhi Sayadaw gave the example with Devadatta) He had jhāna samādhi and psychic power but not sammā samādhi (adhisamādhi) or paññā samādhi. So he ended up in ruin. (Sayadaw continued to talk about the influence of taṇhā by using the Nadi Sutta).
Living beings with taṇhā and clinging to things which are unstable and unreliable. Devedatta was a good example. Even jhāna and abhiññā are unreliable and no need to talk about the worldly pleasures. (Sayadaw continued to talk on cittānupassanā).
Whatever mind arises contemplate impermanence. After that, continue to contemplate its disenchantment (Nibbidā Ñāṇa) to arise. From the knowledge of impermanence to the knowledge of disenchantment is not easy. It takes a very long time to develop. But someone mature in pāramitā it doesn’t take very long.
revised on 2021-03-26; cited from https://oba.org.tw/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=4241&p=36067#p36067 (posted on 2019-03-03)
- Content of Part 10 on "Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw"
- Content of "Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw"
- Content of Publications of Ven. Uttamo
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