Are you the Fool or the Wise?

revised on 2024-06-09

Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 9th August 1961

Are you the insider or outsider of the Buddha sāsana? You have to check yourselves. If you are an outsider, then correct yourself when there is still time. First, I’ll compare the two knowledges (ñāṇas) of inside and outside sāsanas. These are: kammassakatā ñāṇa and saccānulomika ñāṇa. Kammassakatā ñāṇa is the knowledge of knowing that doing the wholesome merits of dāna and sīla will give the good results. This also exists outside the Buddha-dhamma and does not lead to Truth (sacca). Saccānulomika ñāṇa is knowing the three universal characteristics of the khandhas, and can be known only in the Buddha sāsana. If you die without doing vipassanā practice and do not become the insider of the sāsana. There are many who only end up with the outside sāsana dhammas, not realizing that lacking the sāsana knowledge means not knowing the Truth. I am urging you to try to realize the inside sāsana knowledge and not only end up with the outside sāsana dhammas. knowing about the impermanence of one’s khandhas is saccānulomika ñāṇa. It’s also right view (sammā-diṭṭhi). You’re arriving at the entrance of Nibbāna.

If I have to talk about their differences— the first knowledge (i.e., kammassakatā ñāṇa) can’t dispel identity view (sakkāya-diṭṭhi). Without the wrong view falling away, and even though it leads to a good destination when its power is finished (i.e., wholesome kamma), one can fall down to painful existence (apāya). Inside the sāsana task is the working of the right view.

(Sayadaw explained the 12 inversions— vipallāsas. This talk is the 5th talk on the 12 vipallāsas.) Someone who consorts with the dhamma that shouldn't be consorted with is a fool (bāla). Practice of discerning anicca is consorting with the wise (i.e., right view). To live and die with twelve inversions is the death of a fool. In the world there are more corpses of fools. You have to struggle to get out from these groups.

After death, a body that becomes putrid is the corpse of a fool. A corpse that becomes chemical relics (i.e., dhātu sarīras) is considered that of a wise man. (There are a number of prominent monks-scholars and meditation teachers in Burma who reject the idea that an arahant can have a sarīra like the Buddha.) They lack the knowledge and experience about relics. The relics of Thai forest monks Ajahn Sao and Ajahn Mun are of excellent quality. It seems to me that arahant relics are related to jhāna attainments and wisdom. Reciting the Maṅgala Sutta is not for protection from dangers, but for practice (to develop the mind and realising of Nibbāna). The inner enemies are more frightening than the outer enemies (i.e., diṭṭhi and taṇhā) or kilesa enemies. Protection from the outer enemies is still possible. The inner enemies exist as latent defilements (anusaya kilesas). The inner dangers, the four dangers of painful existences, are more frightful. Not knowing oneself as a fool is the worst thing in the world. For an insider of the sāsana to become a fool represents the greatest loss. I’ll talk about a sutta in the Saḷāyatana Saṃyutta. A monk requested the Buddha to teach him how to dispel sakkāya diṭṭhi. If you discern anicca and sakkāya diṭṭhi will fall away. If you contemplate the mind and discern its anicca or feeling and its anicca. May be you may think why it’s so quick for sakkāya-diṭṭhi falls away by discerning anicca. You have never discerned it before. It's neither a waste of money nor tiring. You have to contemplate it only with sati and paññā. (Hedonism— eastern or western creates a lot of human problems— i.e., many kinds are just for momentary pleasure. Some of that was exhausting and a lot of suffering. Dhamma happiness is the only solution for solving human problems and sufferings.)

You all are afraid of becoming hell beings, animals, and hungry shades. Don’t be afraid! Instead, fear the seeds of hell (i.e., Sakkāya-diṭṭhi). Contemplating the mind is not difficult. It's important to accompany it with sati and paññā when it arises. The person with the path factors means he is alive with the path factored consciousness (i.e., vipassanā magga). It dispels diṭṭhi kilesa. It’s important to be alive with the path factored consciousness. In this way there is no seed of hell in your heart. This is falling away by contemplation. (bhāvetabba). If no contemplation, it'll exist as a latent tendency (anusaya). Therefore, it has to be fallen away by abandonment. Following anicca until it become disenchantment and ending of it will abandon Diṭṭhi Kilesa.

revised on 2024-06-09

  • Content of Part 14 on "Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw"

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