To Nibbāna with One Dhamma

revised on 2021-03-26

Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 11th January 1961

If you contemplate one dhamma and can finish the practice. For example, mind or feeling, if you can contemplate its impermanence and finish the practice. In the body a pleasant feeling arises and contemplate it as impermanent dhamma. Is it still a feeling or not? Or is it the cessation of feeling?

It becomes vedanā nirodha and taṇhā nirodho – with the cessation of feeling and craving also ceases. Craving dies away if you discern impermanence. It arrives to Nibbāna if craving dies. Ñāṇa must see the cessation or vanishing. Seeing is magga.

It becomes taṇhā nirodho nibbānaṁ – the cessation of craving is Nibbāna. Not with many dhammas, but with only one dhamma will realize Nibbāna.

(We can see this answer in the Saṁyutta Nikāya, Kinsupama Sutta. The four arahants mentioned their respective practices; six āyatanas, five khandhas, four great elements and anicca. There were also many evidences from the 20th century living teachers of Burma. For example, Sun Loon Sayadaw, The-Inn Gu Sayadaw, We-bu Sayadaw, etc.)

The last arahant of the sutta mentioned only one dhamma, i.e., anicca. The three Burmese teachers mentioned only one dhamma, (i.e., ānāpāna). This is eko – dhammo – one dhamma. There are three kinds of feeling. By condensing them and become one (i.e., only feeling and only anicca).

Pleasant, painful or neutral feelings (sukha, dukkha, and upekkhā), whichever one arises contemplate to discern its impermanence. Pleasant, unpleasant metal feelings (somanassa, domanassa vedanā) are also in the same way. Where did this teaching come from?

(Sayadaw told the story of Kundalakesi. She was the only daughter of a rich man and fallen in love with a criminal. Later married him and nearly escaped from his attempted murder.

After becoming a female wanderer – paribbājaka, she challenged everyone with her 1000 questions. Later met with Ven. Sariputta and couldn’t answer to his one question, “What’s the one Dhamma to Nibbāna?”.)

Ven. Sāriputta questioned to her; “Answer me to Nibbāna with one dhamma?” She couldn’t answer it and Sāriputta gave her the answer, “With the one dhamma of feeling can arrive to Nibbāna.” (Ven. Sāriputta himself became arahant with the contemplation of vedanā by listening to the Buddha's talk.)

Therefore it needs only learn a system from a good teacher and practice. You are sure to realize it if you can contemplate rightly to see impermanence. Nibbāna can’t be searched for. You only can discover it with contemplation (e.g., see the Rohitassa devata’s story). If taṇhā dies and Nibbāna. It’s quite easy.

(The Buddha’s Teachings were simple and profound. But with the practice it needs a lot of perseverance. No elaboration like the later Buddhist teachings.)

(Sayadaw gave instruction on Vedanānupassanā). You at last only see impermanence if you contemplate the arising of feeling. This is eko-dhammo – one dhamma. If it’s becoming anicca and magga; is there still has any kilesa comes in?”

Later Kundalakesī became an arahant, and the monk surprised about it. Then the Buddha told them; “If you have a lot of knowledge and not practice for it, it becomes useless. Even with one dhamma and extinguish kilesa becomes precious.”

Its disenchantment and its ending will be sure to reach Nibbāna if you only contemplate feelings and discern impermanence. And then The Buddha said to the monks; “It is not a hero if you can conquer 100,000 enemies. It is a real hero that only you can conquer the kilesa enemy.”

Note: There were some self-study western Buddhists rejected some meditation systems as invalid. According to them, they made this conclusion because it could not be found in the Pā i Nikāyas. ḷ If the Buddha had to teach everything in details and included everything, even 10 Pāḷi Nikāyas also not enough (we have 5 Nikāyas). These people should go and study all the wellestablished systems thoroughly with the Nikāyas is the right way to do. Here I am not saying that all systems you could find in media are authentic. I can give some examples, the Mahasi System and Saya Thet Gyi (U Ba Khin’s teacher) System s are well established for nearly a century now. There were many yogis who had benefited from it (e.g., Sayagyi S. N. Goenka). This talk here is good for reflection on already well-established systems.

revised on 2021-03-26; cited from (posted on 2019-03-25)

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