The Four Dangers

revised on 2024-07-10

Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; 12th December 1960

It’s important to know the four dangers mentioned by the Buddha in Aṅguttara Nikāya**.** Only by knowing about the dangers will you shun them. Once you know the place is not good, you will want to change the place. There are four dangers : birth, ageing, sickness, and death. Clinging to one’s khandha, family members, and wealth is the same as a vulture liking or loving the putrid carcass of a dead dog. Living beings are happy wherever they are. Being happy with dangers is samudaya taṇhā. Being pushed down to dangers is ignorance. Encountering the four dangers is due to avijjā and saṅkhāra. If there is no avijjā and saṅkhāra, knowledge arises and the condition becomes unconditioned.

Avijjā and saṅkhāra are also like someone who is blind, and when walking, they tumble down and get injuries. Here, avijjā is not seeing (blindness); saṅkhāra is action (walking); injuries are jāti, jarā, vyādhi, and maraṇa.

In practising vipassanā, don’t delay the practice until tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. Days, months, and years are related to the sun and moon; they will constantly change until the world is destroyed. (Doomsday with darkness is where humans’ kilesas excel them.) Your khandhas are not like this. You can’t delay or extend the time. Therefore, you have to search for a parting road (from the defiled path to the purified path) before arriving at sickness.

revised on 2024-07-10

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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。