The Way of No Grimace and Smile

revised on 2020-12-30

Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 15th November 1961

Seeing it by oneself means the view of knowledge (ñāṇa). This khandha is the cause and effect connection of conditional relation khandha (Paṭṭhāna khandha), dependent co-arising khandha (paṭiccasamuppāda khandha) and the khandha of truths (sacca khandha—dukkha and samudaya khandhas). You only have these two truths if you don’t have a teacher. You’re wandering with fuel and fire (or change of fuel and fire). Wandering with burning and extinction is called the round of existence—Saṃsāra. Samudaya (i.e., craving—taṇhā) asked you to get more (money or sensuality) and then you had it. According to the worldly standard, it’s called happiness. In reality, it’s suffering (dukkha). How did you live in Saṃsāra? It was like this simile—the cart owner (ignorance—avijjā) asked the cart driver (craving—taṇhā) to drive the cart yoked with the ox which was like the Saṃsāra traveller in suffering. In Saṃsāra the ox always died with over tiredness because of the burdened load. This happened because we didn’t own the Dhamma—Sandiṭṭhika—visible here and now. The poor-grimaced face person wanted to die because they took happiness as suffering (The poor don’t have wealth and sensual pleasure, for them is happiness. In reality, it’s suffering.). The rich smiling person regards suffering as happiness (in Dhamma's point of view—to be poor or rich is dukkha). Human beings are lost their ways.

(Sayadaw’s view on sukha and dukkha here was like Tibetan yogi Milarepa’s saying— “with more is more dukkha, with little is little dukkha and with nothing is no dukkha.”

Today world situations are supporting all these sayings. Super greedy man creates the ugly world or Earth of present day.)

The round of existence only has grimace and smile. Dhamma for the cessation of the grimace and smile is—sandiṭṭhika. You become a stream enterer (sotāpanna) if you own this Dhamma. The person of self-mortification is grimaced person. The person who indulges in sensual pleasure is smiling person. The person follows the middle way has no grimace and smile. The grimacing and smiling persons can’t discern dukkha sacca—the truth of suffering. It can be discerned by going between the ways of the grimace and smile. We were still not freed because it had never been on the middle way in Saṃsāra. When dhammas calling at you sometime you followed them with the way of indulgence (kamasukhallikānuyoga) and sometime with the way of mortification (attakilamath’ānuyoga)—acting with pleasure and pain or greed and anger. You have never been on the middle way because don’t know how to follow them. Therefore, don’t follow with greed and anger instead with knowledge(ñāṇa). For example, your body is itching, don’t follow with the hand (i.e., scratching the itch). When you’re following it with knowledge—the caller dhamma/ehipassika is anicca; the following knowledge is visible here and now—sandiṭṭhika. Greed and anger do not arise, then you’ve been in the middle way. You’re sure to Nibbāna if in the middle way. You discern the anicca dukkha sacca (truth of impermanent dukkha) with the ñāṇa magga sacca (truth of the path knowledge) which is the middle way. It was the true middle way if you can follow behind ehipassiko with the sandiṭṭhika. (some Buddhists confuse the practice, and they rely on outside power with prayers and vows, then it became another God religion. You can't get a piece of bread even if you pray, let alone end up dukkha.)

Mind, feeling, etc. Whatever dhamma (phenomenon) is calling to you, it arises and passes away. The vanishing dhamma is not a person and not a being. (If someone is calling our names, we react with diṭṭhi but never to the ehipassiko dhamma which can lead us to permanent happiness.) Here's what you need to remember—Ehipassiko, it is always calling at you. You become its great enemy if you don’t follow its calling. Why? Because you’re forgetful. The forgetful mind is ignorance (avijjā). (avijjā → saṅkhāra →dukkha; see the 12 links of D. A.)

With the arising of magga, it kills craving, conceit and wrong view (taṇhā, māna and diṭṭhi if you follow behind ehipassiko.

revised on 2020-12-30

  • Content of Part 13 on "Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw"

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According to the translator— Ven. Uttamo's words, this is strictly for free distribution only, as a gift of Dhamma—Dhamma Dāna. You may re-format, reprint, translate, and redistribute this work in any medium.

據英譯者—鄔達摩比丘交待,此譯文僅能免費與大眾結緣,作為法的禮物(Dhamma Dāna)。你可以在任何媒體上重新編製、重印、翻譯和重新發布這部作品。