MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

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MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Jun 21, 2012 9:18 am

MN 136 PTS: M iii 207
Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta: The Greater Analysis of Action
translated from the Pali byThanissaro Bhikkhu


Two lessons in the dangers of quick generalization. In the first, the Buddha points out that the perception of all feeling as stressful is not appropriate at all stages of the practice. In the second, he shows that generalizing too quickly on the basis of what one sees in meditation can lead to serious wrong view.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html



I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Rājagaha at the Bamboo Grove in the Squirrels' sanctuary. And on that occasion Ven. Samiddhi was staying in a wilderness hut. Then Potaliputta the wanderer, while walking & wandering around to exercise his legs, went to Ven. Samiddhi and exchanged courteous greetings with him. After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, he sat to one side. As he was sitting there, he said to Ven. Samiddhi, "Face to face with Gotama the contemplative have I heard this, face to face have I learned this: 'Bodily action is barren, verbal action is barren, only mental action is true. And there is an attainment in which, on being attained, nothing is felt.'"

"Don't say that, friend. Don't slander the Blessed One. For it's not good to slander the Blessed One; the Blessed One would not say that: 'Bodily action is barren, verbal action is barren, only mental action is true.' But there is, friend, an attainment in which, on being attained, nothing is felt." [1]

"How long has it been, friend Samiddhi, since you went forth (into homelessness)?"

"Not long, friend. Three years."

"Then what now should I say about the elder monks, when a junior monk would suppose that his Teacher is to be defended in this way? Having intentionally done an action with body, with speech, or with mind, what does one experience?"

"Having intentionally done an action with body, with speech, or with mind, one experiences stress."

Then Potaliputta the wanderer neither delighted in nor scorned Ven. Samiddhi's words. Neither delighting nor scorning, he got up from his seat and left.

Then, not long after Potaliputta the wanderer had left, Ven. Samiddhi went to Ven. Ānanda and, on arrival, exchanged courteous greetings with him. After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, he sat to one side. As he was sitting there, he reported to Ven. Ānanda the Elder [2] the entirety of his discussion with Potaliputta the wanderer. When this was said, Ven. Ānanda said to him, "Friend Samiddhi, there is warrant here for seeing the Blessed One. Let's go to the Blessed One and, on arrival, report this matter to him. However he explains it to us, that's how we should bear it in mind."

"As you say, friend, Ven. Samiddhi responded to Ven. Ānanda.

So Ven. Samiddhi and Ven. Ānanda went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, bowed down to him and sat to one side. As they were sitting there, Ven. Ānanda reported to the Blessed One the entirety of the discussion between Ven. Samiddhi and Potaliputta the wanderer.

When this was said, the Blessed One said, "I do not recall even having seen Potaliputta the wanderer, much less having that sort of discussion. And his question, which deserved an analytical answer, has been given a categorical answer by this worthless man, Samiddhi."

When this was said, Ven. Udāyin said to the Blessed One, "But what if Ven. Samiddhi was speaking in reference to this: 'Whatever is felt comes under stress'?"

When this was said, the Blessed One said to Ven. Ānanda, "Look, Ānanda, at how this worthless Udāyin interrupts. I knew just now that he would interrupt in an inappropriate way. From the very beginning, Potaliputta the wanderer was asking about the three kinds of feeling. When this worthless Samiddhi was asked by him in this way, he should have answered, 'Having intentionally done — with body, with speech, or with mind — an action that is to be felt as pleasure, one experiences pleasure. Having intentionally done — with body, with speech, or with mind — an action that is to be felt as pain, one experiences pain. Having intentionally done — with body, with speech, or with mind — an action that is to be felt as neither-pleasure-nor-pain, one experiences neither-pleasure-nor-pain. Answering this way, this worthless Samiddhi would have rightly answered Potaliputta the wanderer. But then who [3] are these wanderers of other sects, foolish & inexperienced? And who would understand the Tathāgata's greater analysis of action — if you were to listen, Ānanda, to the Tathāgata analyzing the greater analysis of action?"

"This is the time, O Blessed One. This is the time, O One Well-gone, for the Blessed One to analyze the greater analysis of action. Having heard the Blessed One, the monks will bear it in mind."

"In that case, Ānanda, listen and pay close attention. I will speak."

"As you say, lord," Ven. Ānanda responded to the Blessed One.

The Blessed One said, "Ānanda, there are four kinds of person to be found in the world. Which four? There is the case where a certain person is one who takes life, takes what is not given (steals), engages in illicit sex, lies, speaks divisively, speaks abusively, engages in idle chatter; is covetous, malevolent, & holds wrong view. With the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell.

"But there is also the case where a certain person is one who takes life, takes what is not given (steals), engages in illicit sex, lies, speaks divisively, speaks abusively, engages in idle chatter; is covetous, malevolent, & holds wrong view, [yet] with the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a good destination, a heavenly world.

"And there is the case where a certain person is one who abstains from taking life, abstains from taking what is not given, abstains from illicit sex, abstains from lying, abstains from speaking divisively, abstains from speaking abusively, abstains from idle chatter, is not covetous, not malevolent, & holds right view. With the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a good destination, a heavenly world.

"But there is also the case where a certain person is one who abstains from taking life, abstains from taking what is not given, abstains from illicit sex, abstains from lying, abstains from speaking divisively, abstains from speaking abusively, abstains from idle chatter, is not covetous, not malevolent, & holds right view, [yet] with the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell.

"There is the case, Ānanda, where a certain contemplative or brahman — through ardency, exertion, commitment, heedfulness, & right attention — touches the sort of concentration of awareness that, when his mind is thus concentrated, he sees with the divine eye, pure and surpassing the human, that person — the case where one who takes life, takes what is not given (steals), engages in illicit sex, lies, speaks divisively, speaks abusively, engages in idle chatter, is covetous, malevolent, & holds wrong view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell.

"He says, 'So there really are evil actions, there really is the result of misconduct. For I saw the case where a person who took life... & held wrong view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell.' He says, 'Anyone who takes life... & hold wrong view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell. Whoever knows this, knows rightly. Whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong.' Insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless.'

"Then there is the case, Ānanda, where a certain contemplative or brahman — through ardency, exertion, commitment, heedfulness, & right attention — touches the sort of concentration of awareness that, when his mind is thus concentrated, he sees with the divine eye, pure and surpassing the human, that person — the case where one who takes life, takes what is not given (steals), engages in illicit sex, lies, speaks divisively, speaks abusively, engages in idle chatter, is covetous, malevolent, & holds wrong view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a good destination, a heavenly world.

"He says, 'So there really are no evil actions, there really is no result of misconduct. For I saw the case where a person who took life... & held wrong view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a good destination, a heavenly world.' He says, 'Anyone who takes life... & hold wrong view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a good destination, a heavenly world. Whoever knows this, knows rightly. Whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong.' Insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless.'

"Then there is the case, Ānanda, where a certain contemplative or brahman — through ardency, exertion, commitment, heedfulness, & right attention — touches the sort of concentration of awareness that, when his mind is thus concentrated, he sees with the divine eye, pure and surpassing the human, that person — the case where one who abstains from taking life, abstains from taking what is not given, abstains from illicit sex, abstains from lying, abstains from speaking divisively, abstains from speaking abusively, abstains from idle chatter, is not covetous, not malevolent, & holds right view, with the breakup of the body, after death, reappears in a good destination, a heavenly world.

"He says, 'So there really are fine actions, there really is the result of good conduct. For I saw the case where a person who abstained from taking life... & held right view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a good destination, a heavenly world.' He says, 'Anyone who abstains from taking life... & holds right view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a good destination, a heavenly world. Whoever knows this, knows rightly. Whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong.' Insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless.'

"Then there is the case, Ānanda, where a certain contemplative or brahman — through ardency, exertion, commitment, heedfulness, & right attention — touches the sort of concentration of awareness that, when his mind is thus concentrated, he sees with the divine eye, pure and surpassing the human, that person — the case where one who abstains from taking life, abstains from taking what is not given, abstains from illicit sex, abstains from lying, abstains from speaking divisively, abstains from speaking abusively, abstains from idle chatter, is not covetous, not malevolent, & holds right view, with the breakup of the body, after death, reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell.

"He says, 'So there really are no fine actions, there really is no result of good conduct. For I saw the case where a person who abstained from taking life... & held right view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell.' He says, 'Anyone who abstains from taking life... & holds right view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell. Whoever knows this, knows rightly. Whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong.' Insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless.'

"Now, Ānanda, in the case where the contemplative or brahman says, 'So there really are evil actions, there really is the result of misconduct,' I allow him that. When he says, 'For I saw the case where a person who took life... & held wrong view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell,' I allow him that, too. But when he says, 'Anyone who takes life... & hold wrong view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell,' I don't allow him that. And when he says, 'Whoever knows this, knows rightly; whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong,' I don't allow him that. When, insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless,' I don't allow him that, either. Why is that? Because the Tathāgata's knowledge with regard to the greater analysis of action is otherwise.

"Now, Ānanda, in the case where the contemplative or brahman says, 'So there really are no evil actions, there really is no result of misconduct,' I don't allow him that. But when he says, 'For I saw the case where a person who took life... & held wrong view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a good destination, a heavenly world,' I do allow him that. But when he says, 'Anyone who takes life... & hold wrong view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a good destination, a heavenly world,' I don't allow him that. And when he says, 'Whoever knows this, knows rightly. Whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong,' I don't allow him that. When, insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless,' I don't allow him that, either. Why is that? Because the Tathāgata's knowledge with regard to the greater analysis of action is otherwise.

"Now, Ānanda, in the case where the contemplative or brahman says, 'So there really are fine actions, there really is the result of good conduct,' I allow him that. And when he says, 'For I saw the case where a person who abstained from taking life... & held right view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a good destination, a heavenly world,' I allow him that, too. But when he says, 'Anyone who abstains from taking life... & holds right view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a good destination, a heavenly world,' I don't allow him that. And when he says, 'Whoever knows this, knows rightly. Whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong,' I don't allow him that. When, insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless,' I don't allow him that, either. Why is that? Because the Tathāgata's knowledge with regard to the greater analysis of action is otherwise.

"Now, Ānanda, in the case where the contemplative or brahman says, 'So there really are no fine actions, there really is no result of good conduct,' I don't allow him that. But when he says, 'For I saw the case where a person who abstained from taking life... & held right view, with the breakup of the body, after death, has reappeared in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell,' I do allow him that. But when he says, 'Anyone who abstains from taking life... & holds right view: They all, on the breakup of the body, after death, reappear in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell,' I don't allow him that. And when he says, 'Whoever knows this, knows rightly. Whoever knows otherwise, their knowledge is wrong,' I don't allow him that. When, insisting through obstinacy & grasping right there on what was seen by himself, known by himself, understood by himself, he states: 'Only this is true. Everything otherwise is worthless,' I don't allow him that, either. Why is that? Because the Tathāgata's knowledge with regard to the greater analysis of action is otherwise.

"Now, Ānanda, in the case of the person who takes life... & holds wrong view and, with the breakup of the body, after death, reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell: Either earlier he performed evil action that is to be felt as painful, or later he performed evil action that is to be felt as painful, or at the time of death he adopted & carried out wrong view. Because of that, with the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell. And as for the results of taking life... holding wrong view, he will feel them either right here & now, or in the next [lifetime], or following that.

"In the case of the person who takes life... & holds wrong view [yet], with the breakup of the body, after death, reappears in a good destination, a heavenly world: Either earlier he performed fine action that is to be felt as pleasant, or later he performed fine action that is to be felt as pleasant, or at the time of death he adopted & carried out right view. Because of that, with the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a good destination, a heavenly world. But as for the results of taking life... holding wrong view, he will feel them either right here & now, or in the next [lifetime], or following that.

"In the case of the person who abstains from taking life... & holds right view and, with the breakup of the body, after death, reappears in a good destination, a heavenly world: either earlier he performed fine action that is to be felt as pleasant, or later he performed fine action that is to be felt as pleasant, or at the time of death he adopted & carried out right view. Because of that, with the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a good destination, a heavenly world. And as for the results of abstaining from taking life... holding right view, he will feel them either right here & now, or in the next [lifetime], or following that."

"In the case of the person who abstains from taking life... & holds right view [yet] with the breakup of the body, after death, reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell: Either earlier he performed evil action that is to be felt as painful, or later he performed evil action that is to be felt as painful, or at the time of death he adopted & carried out wrong view. Because of that, with the breakup of the body, after death, he reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination, a lower realm, hell. But as for the results of abstaining from taking life... holding right view, he will feel them either right here & now, or in the next [lifetime], or following that.

"Thus, Ānanda, there is action that is ineffectual and apparently ineffectual. There is action that is ineffectual but apparently effectual. There is action that is both effectual and apparently effectual. There is action that is effectual but apparently ineffectual."

That is what the Blessed One said. Gratified, Ven. Ānanda delighted in the Blessed One's words.

Notes

1. See AN 9.34. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an09/an09.034.than.html
The Buddha, when later criticizing Ven. Samiddhi's answer, does not criticize this part of it.

2. This is the one place in this discourse where Ven. Ānanda is called Ānanda the Elder.

3. Reading ke cawith the Burmese and PTS editions of the Canon. The Sri Lankan edition here reads keci; the Thai edition, te.

For a discussion of this discourse as an example of an analytical answer to a question, see Skill in Questions, chapter four.

See also:
MN 41; http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
MN 135; http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... 32&start=0
SN 42.13;
http://www.metta.lk/tipitaka/2Sutta-Pit ... ggo-e.html
41. 1. 13 (13) Pàñali Trumpet Flower
AN 3.61; http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
AN 4.77; http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
AN 6.63; http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
AN 8.40. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Jun 21, 2012 9:24 am

MN 136 PTS: M iii 207
Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta: The Great Exposition of Kamma
translated from the Pali by Ñanamoli Thera


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nymo.html

Introduction by Bhikkhu Khantipalo
This celebrated sutta shows some of the complexities of kamma and its results. Beginning with a strange view expressed by a confused wanderer and a confused answer given by a bhikkhu, the Buddha then gives his Great Exposition of Kamma which is based upon four "types" of people:
    the evil-doer who goes to hell (or some other low state of birth),
    the evil-doer who goes to heaven,
    the good man who goes to heaven,
    and the good man who goes to hell (or other low birth).
The Buddha then shows how wrong views can arise from only partial understanding of truth. One can see the stages of this: (1) a mystic "sees" in vision an evil-doer suffering in hell, (2) this confirms what he had heard about moral causality, (3) so he says, "evil-doers always go to hell," and (4) dogma hardens and becomes rigid when he says (with the dogmatists of all ages and places), "Only this is true; anything else is wrong." The stages of this process are repeated for each of the four "persons," after which the Buddha proceeds to analyze these views grounded in partial experience and points out which portions are true (because verifiable by trial and experience) and which are dogmatic superstructure which is unjustified. Finally, the Buddha explains his Great Exposition of Kamma in which he shows that notions of invariability like "the evildoer goes to hell" are much too simple. The minds of people are complex and they make many different kinds of kamma even in one lifetime, some of which may influence the last moment when kamma is made before death, which in turn is the basis for the next life.





1. Thus have I heard. On one occasion the Blessed One was living at Rajagaha, in the Bamboo Grove, the Squirrels' Feeding Place. Now on that occasion the venerable Samiddhi was living in a forest hut.

Then the wanderer Potaliputta, walking and wandering for exercise, came to the venerable Samiddhi and exchanged greetings with him, and when the courteous and amiable talk was finished, he sat down at one side. When he had done so, he said to the venerable Samiddhi:

2. "I heard and learned this, friend Samiddhi, from the monk Gotama's lips: 'Bodily kammas are vain, verbal kammas are vain, only mental kammas are true.' But there is actually that attainment having entered upon which nothing (of result of kammas) is felt at all."

"Not so, friend Potaliputta, do not say thus, do not misrepresent the Blessed One; it is not good to misrepresent the Blessed One; the Blessed One would not say so: 'Bodily kammas are vain, verbal kammas are vain, only mental kammas are true.' And there is actually that attainment having entered upon which nothing (of result of kammas) is felt at all."

"How long is it since you went forth, friend Samiddhi?"

"Not long, friend, three years."

"There now, what shall we say to the elder bhikkhus, when the young bhikkhu fancies the Master is to be defended thus? After doing intentional kamma, friend Samiddhi, by way of body, speech or mind, what does one feel (of its result)?"

"After doing an intentional kamma, friend Potaliputta, by way of body, speech or mind, one feels suffering (as its result)."

Then neither agreeing nor disagreeing with the words of the venerable Samiddhi, the wanderer Potaliputta got up from his seat and went away.

3. Soon after the wanderer Potaliputta had gone, the venerable Samiddhi went to the venerable Ananda and exchanged greetings with him, and when the courteous and amiable talk was finished, he sat down at one side. When he had done so, he told the venerable Ananda all his conversation with the wanderer Potaliputta.

When this was said, the venerable Ananda told him: "Friend Samiddhi, this conversation should be told to the Blessed One. Come, let us go to the Blessed One, and having done so, let us tell him about this. As he answers, so we shall bear it in mind."

"Even so, friend," the venerable Samiddhi replied.

Then they went together to the Blessed One, and after paying homage to him, they sat down at one side. When they had done so, the venerable Ananda told the Blessed One all the venerable Samiddhi's conversation with the wanderer Potaliputta.

4. When this was said, the Blessed One told the venerable Ananda:

"I do not even know the wanderer by sight, Ananda. How could there have been such a conversation? The wanderer Potaliputta's question ought to have been answered after analyzing it, but this misguided man Samiddhi answered it without qualification.[1]

When this was said, the venerable Udayin said to the Blessed One: "'But, venerable sir, supposing when the venerable Samiddhi spoke, he was referring to this, namely, 'Whatever is felt is suffering.'"[2]

5. Then the Blessed One addressed the venerable Ananda: "See, Ananda, how this misguided man Udayin interferes. I knew, Ananda, that this misguided man Udayin would unreasonably interfere now. To begin with it was the three kinds of feeling that were asked about by the wanderer Potaliputta. If, when this misguided man Samiddhi was asked, he had answered the wanderer Potaliputta thus: 'After doing an intentional kamma by way of body, speech and mind (whose result is) to be felt as pleasure, he feels pleasure; after doing an intentional kamma by way of body, speech and mind (whose result is) to be felt as pain, he feels pain; after doing an intentional kamma by way of body, speech and mind (whose result is) to be felt as neither-pain-nor-pleasure, he feels neither-pain-nor-pleasure' — by answering him thus, Ananda, the misguided man Samiddhi would have given the wanderer Potaliputta the right answer. Besides, Ananda, who are the foolish thoughtless wanderers of other sects that they will understand the Tathagata's Great Exposition of Kamma? (But) if you, Ananda, would listen to the Tathagata expounding the Great Exposition of Kamma (you might understand it).[3]

"This is the time, Blessed One, this is the time, Sublime One, for the Blessed One to expound the Great Exposition of Kamma. Having heard it from the Blessed One, the bhikkhus will bear it in mind."

"Then listen, Ananda, and heed well what I shall say."

"Even so, venerable sir," the venerable Ananda replied. The Blessed One said this:

6. "Ananda, there are four kinds of persons existing in the world. What four?

(i) "Here some person kills living beings, takes what is not given, misconducts himself in sexual desires, speaks falsehood, speaks maliciously, speaks harshly, gossips, is covetous, is ill-willed, and has wrong view.[4] On the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell.

(ii) "But here some person kills living beings... and has wrong view. On the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in a happy destination, in the heavenly world.

(iii) "Here some person abstains from killing living beings, from taking what is not given, from misconduct in sexual desires, from false speech, from malicious speech, from harsh speech, from gossip, he is not covetous, is not ill-willed, and has right view.[5] On the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in a happy destination, in the heavenly world.

(iv) "But here some person abstains from killing living beings... and has right view. On the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell.

7. (i) "Here, Ananda, in consequence of ardor, endeavor, devotion, diligence, and right attention, some monk or brahman attains such concentration of mind that, when his mind is concentrated, he sees with the heavenly eyesight, which is purified and surpasses the human, that some person kills living beings here, takes what is not given, misconducts himself in sexual desires, speaks falsehood, speaks maliciously, speaks harshly, gossips, is covetous, is ill-willed, has wrong view. He sees that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell. He says: 'It seems that there are evil kammas and that there is the result of misconduct; for I have seen that a person killed living beings here... had wrong view. I have seen that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he had reappeared in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell.' He says: 'It seems that one who kills living beings... has wrong view, will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell. Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge.' So he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen and felt; insisting on that alone, he says: 'Only this is true, anything else is wrong.'

8. (ii) "But here in consequence of ardor, endeavor, devotion, diligence and right attention, some monk or brahman attains such concentration of mind that, when his mind is concentrated, he sees with the heavenly eyesight, which is purified and surpasses the human, that some person kills living beings here... has wrong view. He sees that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world. He says: 'It seems there are no evil kammas, there is no result of misconduct. For I have seen that a person killed living beings here... had wrong view. I have seen that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world.' He says: 'It seems that one who kills living beings... has wrong view will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in a happy destination, in the heavenly world. Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge.' So he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen and felt; insisting on that alone, he says: 'Only this is true, anything else is wrong.'

9. (iii) "Here in consequence of ardor, endeavor, devotion, diligence and right attention, some monk or brahman attains such concentration of mind that, when his mind is concentrated, he sees with the heavenly eyesight, which is purified and surpasses the human, that some person abstains from killing living beings here... has right view. He sees that, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world. He says: 'It seems that there are good kammas, there is result of good conduct. For I have seen that a person abstained from killing living beings here... had right view. I saw that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he had reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world.' He says: 'It seems that one who abstains from killing living beings... has right view will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in a happy destination, in the heavenly world. Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge.' So he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen and felt; insisting on that alone, he says: 'Only this is true; anything else is wrong.'

10. (iv) "But here in consequence of ardor, endeavor, devotion, diligence and right attention, some monk or brahman attains such concentration of mind that, when his mind is concentrated, he sees with the heavenly eyesight, which is purified and surpasses the human, that some person abstains from killing living beings here... has right view. He sees that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell. He says: 'It seems that there are no good kammas, there is no result of good conduct. For I have seen that a person abstained from killing here... had right view. I saw that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he had reappeared in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell.' He says: 'It seems that one who abstains from killing living beings... has right view, will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell. Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge.' So he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen and felt; insisting on that alone, he says: 'Only this is true; anything else is wrong.'

11. (i) "Now, Ananda, when a monk or brahman says thus: 'It seems that there are evil kammas, there is the result of misconduct,' I concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'For I have seen that some person killed living beings... had wrong view. I saw that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he had reappeared in states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell,' I concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'It seems that one who kills living beings... has wrong view, will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen and felt; and insisting on that alone, he says: 'Only this is true; anything else is wrong,' I do not concede that to him.

"Why is that? The Tathagata's knowledge of the Great Exposition of Kamma is different.

12. (ii) "Now when a monk or brahman says thus: 'It seems that there are no evil kammas, there is no result of misconduct,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'For I have seen that a person killed living beings... had wrong view. I saw that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he had reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world,' I concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'It seems that one who kills living beings... has wrong view, will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in a happy destination, in the heavenly world,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen and felt; and insisting on that alone, he says: 'Only this is true; anything else is wrong,' I do not concede that to him.

"Why is that? The Tathagata's knowledge of the Great Exposition of Kamma is different.

13. (iii) "Now when a monk or brahman says thus: 'It seems that there are good kammas, there is a result of good conduct,' I concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'For I have seen that a person abstained from killing living beings here... had right view. I saw that on the dissolution of the body after death, he had reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world,' I concede that to him.

"When he says: 'It seems that one who abstains from killing living beings... has right view will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in a happy destination, in the heavenly world,'[6] I do not concede that to him.

"When he says: 'Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen, and felt; and insisting on that alone he says: 'Only this is true: anything else is wrong,' I do not concede that to him.

"Why is that? The Tathagata's knowledge of the Great Exposition of Kamma is different.

14. (iv) "Now when a monk or brahman says thus: 'It seems that there are no good kammas, there is no result of good conduct,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he says thus: "For I have seen that a person abstained from killing living beings here... had right view. I saw that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he had reappeared in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell," I concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'One who abstains from killing living beings... has right view will always, on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappear in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he says thus: 'Those who know thus know rightly; those who know otherwise are mistaken in their knowledge,' I do not concede that to him.

"When he obstinately misapprehends what he himself has known, seen and felt; and insisting on that alone, he says: 'Only this is true; anything else is wrong,' I do not concede that to him.

"Why is that? The Tathagata's knowledge of the Great Exposition of Kamma is different.
The Great Exposition of Kamma

15. (i) "Now, Ananda, there is the person who has killed living beings here... has had wrong view. And on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell.[7] But (perhaps) the evil kamma producing his suffering was done by him earlier, or the evil kamma producing his suffering was done by him later, or wrong view was undertaken and completed by him at the time of his death.[8] And that was why, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappeared in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell. But since he has killed living beings here... has had wrong view, he will feel the result of that here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.

16. (ii) "Now there is the person who has killed living beings here... has had wrong view. And on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in a happy destination, in the heavenly world.[9] But (perhaps) the good kamma producing his happiness was done by him earlier, or the good kamma producing his happiness was done by him later, or right view was undertaken and completed by him at the time of his death. And that was why, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world. But since he has killed living beings here... has had wrong view, he will feel the result of that here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.[10]

17. (iii) "Now there is the person who has abstained from killing living beings here... has had right view. And on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in a happy destination, in the heavenly world.[11] But (perhaps) the good kamma producing his happiness was done by him earlier, or the good kamma producing his happiness was done by him later, or right view was undertaken and completed by him at the time of his death. And that was why, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappeared in a happy destination, in the heavenly world. But since he has abstained from killing living beings here... has had right view, he will feel the result of that here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.

18. (iv) "Now there is the person who has abstained from killing living beings here... has had right view. And on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell.[12] But (perhaps) the evil kamma producing his suffering was done by him earlier, or the evil kamma producing his suffering was done by him later, or wrong view was undertaken and completed by him at the time of his death. And that was why, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappeared in the states of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, in hell. But since he has abstained from killing living beings here... has had right view, he will feel the result of that here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.[13]

19. "So, Ananda, there is kamma that is incapable (of good result) and appears incapable (of good result); there is kamma that is incapable (of good result) and appears capable (of good result); there is kamma that is capable (of good result) and appears capable (of good result); there is kamma that is capable (of good result) and appears incapable (of good result)."[14]

This is what the Blessed One said. The venerable Ananda was satisfied and he rejoiced in the Blessed One's words.

Notes

1. These are two of the four ways of answering a question, the other two being: replying with a counter-question, and "setting aside" the question, i.e., replying with silence.

2. This is a quotation from the Buddha's words: see Samyutta Nikaya, Vedana Samyutta, Rahogata-vagga Sutta 1.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

3. This is an addition necessary for understanding this sentence.

4. These are the ten unwholesome courses of kamma.

5. These are the ten wholesome courses of kamma.

6. This amounts to the belief in theistic religions where virtue and faith (=whatever is held to be right view) are supposed to guarantee salvation.

7. Devadatta, for instance, who persuaded prince Ajatasattu to murder his father (who was a stream-winner), three times attempted to murder the Buddha and once succeeded in wounding him, and caused a schism in the Sangha; the last two actions are certain to lead to birth in hell.

8. This series of three phrases appears to mean: earlier, either earlier in life before he undertook either the wholesome or unwholesome courses of kamma, or in some previous life; later, later in that very life, for even if a person does much evil kamma, usually he will also make some good kamma occasionally; wrong view... time of his death, this kind of wrong view will be of the type, "there is no kamma, no results of kamma, no evil, no results of evil," and so on. The next birth actually depends on the object of the last moments of a dying person's consciousness. At that time one should recollect all one's good kamma: generosity, loving-kindness, compassion, pure precepts and so on. Evil should not be thought of then though heavy evil kamma done previously may force itself into the mind and make recollection of one's generosity and virtue in keeping the precepts difficult or impossible.

9. A good example of this is the story of "Coppertooth," the public executioner who, after a career of murder as a bandit, then as the killer of his own bandit comrades and subsequently executioner of all criminals for fifty years, was taught by venerable Sariputta Thera and his mind eased of the heavy weight of evil kamma so that he attained heavenly rebirth. See Dhammapada Commentary, ii, 203-209.

10. Though such a person attained a heavenly rebirth the evil kamma made will still mature sooner or later; he has not escaped its results.

11. King Pasenadi of Kosala, for instance.

12. This was what happened to Queen Mallika, wife of King Pasenadi, who had led a good life, generous, keeping the Five Precepts, and the Eight Precepts on Uposatha days and so on, but once she did evil, having sexual relations with a dog. This unconfessed evil weighed heavily on her mind and she remembered it when dying. As a result she spent seven days in hell. Her power of goodness from the doing of many good kammas then gave her rebirth in a heavenly world. See Dhammapada Commentary, iii, 119-123.

13. Though this virtuous and good person has obtained a low rebirth through the power of previously done evil kamma, still the good kamma made by him will mature sooner or later, when it gets a chance.

14. This final terse paragraph may have been clear to the venerable Ananda Thera, or he may have asked for an explanation, as we require and find in the Commentary, which says:

i. A strong unwholesome kamma (incapable of good result), the result of which will come before the results of weaker unwholesome kammas.

ii. Wholesome kamma (which appears capable of good result) is followed by unwholesome death-proximate kamma which makes the former incapable of good result immediately.

iii. A strong wholesome kamma will mature even before much accumulated unwholesome kamma.

iv. Unwholesome kamma (which appears incapable of good result) is followed by wholesome death-proximate kamma which will mature first and is capable of good results.
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby Sam Vara » Thu Jun 21, 2012 11:22 am

Many thanks Mike - a great deal to think about in this one.

1) Presumably, the "Maha" or "great" part of the title refers to the length of the Sutta. But the Cula Kammavibhanga Sutta is not a lot shorter, and has a more "straightforward" exposition of the relationship between action and destination. It might be that the "great" analysis means that it encompasses the totality of kammic influences. A fuller or more comprehensive analysis.

2) Initially, the Buddha's statement about Potaliputta is puzzling. He says that Potaliputta was, from the outset, asking about the three kinds of feeling. It doesn't look like this, though. Potaliputta's original question seems to be about Kamma by body, speech, and mind. It is an entirely reasonable question, in the sense that if he has been told that Kamma is cetana, then it could follow that the vehicle for that cetana (bodily action, or verbal action) is so insignificant that it is "barren". He is focussing on intention, the ethical essence. But the Buddha saw that all along, he had been concerned about where the ethical agent reappears.

3) Where the Buddha links kamma and vipaka, action and feeling, he does so with a formulation which I have often struggled with - especially when taken out of context. (Having done an intentional action that is to be felt as pleasure, one experiences pleasure.) This, taken on its own, seems to be merely analytically true; a tautology. My understanding is that this sutta adds the context by citing the 10 forms of good kamma. This is therefore a way of stating what actions lead to what feelings (or "appearances") by means of kamma. Truly an "analysis" of kamma, as it is not merely stated that "doing x leads to result y".

4) Interesting bit about which actions are effectual. In the case where one performs the 10 forms of good kamma and reappears in a good destination, the performance in question is not the stated reason for the reappearance. It is due to the earlier and later actions being "fine". (The same obviously applies to bad kamma). So, apart from the examples given (shedding the blood of a Buddha, splitting the Sangha, etc) the main analysis seems to focus upon the long view of accumulation, so to speak.

5) This is not the case with Right/Wrong View at time of death. This seems to be critical (and scary!). One can lose a lot of benefit due to a moment's carelessness as the end draws near. One wonders whether the training in itself is improving our chances, so to speak....

I saw a TV programme several years ago which touched upon this, and which made a deep impression on me. It featured a senior Thai monk who ministered to those on death row. They had done some really bad things, and the method of execution was to be chained in front of a "firing squad" consisting of a single high-velocity machine-gun. The monk said that he actually envied those who were killed this way. He had lived his own life trying to perfect his virtue and concentration, yet he might slip under a bus in the street outside while he was in the grip of an unwholesome thought. The prisoner, however, had the luxury of knowing the exact second. He could prepare himself by ensuring the mind was pure at the requisite moment...
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby daverupa » Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:00 pm

Sam Vega wrote:He had lived his own life trying to perfect his virtue and concentration, yet he might slip under a bus in the street outside while he was in the grip of an unwholesome thought. The prisoner, however, had the luxury of knowing the exact second. He could prepare himself by ensuring the mind was pure at the requisite moment...


Yet consider the following: last thought moment.
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby Sam Vara » Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:19 pm

daverupa

Yes, I'm not surprised to hear that the idea of the last thought moment is not universally recognised.

The theory of the importance of the last thought moment is not mentioned in any of the Buddha’s discourses or even in the later Abhidhamma Pitaka. The Tipitaka records many occasions where the Buddha counselled people who were either dying or critically ill. If the last thought is really crucial to one’s destiny one would expect such occasions to be the most appropriate time for him to mention it, and yet he never did. Nor did he mention it anywhere else.


But the sutta is fairly explicit with regard to immediately ante mortem Right View. This might be seen in the wider sense that last thoughts are important in that they are indicative of one's view. If one has Right View, one will guard thoughts anyway. In a narrower sense, the Sutta might mean that an explicit formulation of one's view is important at such times, for good or ill. The Buddha singled out View as opposed to, say, mindfulness.

Thanks for the link, by the way - interesting stuff.
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Jun 23, 2012 7:39 am

“Friend Samiddhi, I heard and learned this from the recluse Gotama’s own lips: ‘Bodily action is vain, verbal action is vain, only mental action is real.’ And: ‘There is that attainment on entering which one does not feel anything at all.’”
BB: MA says that Potaliputta did not actually hear this personally from the Buddha, but had heard a report that these statements were made by the Buddha.
The former is a distorted version of the Buddha’s declaration at MN 56.4 that mental action is the most reprehensible of the three types of deeds for the performance of evil action.
Upāli Sutta MN 56: http://www.bps.lk/olib/wh/wh098-u.html
    “Of these three actions, Tapassī, thus analyzed and differentiated, mental action, I declare, is the most heinous in doing and perpetrating evil deeds. Bodily action and verbal action are not so (heinous).”
The latter derives from the Buddha’s discussion of the cessation of perception in the Poṭṭhapāda Sutta (DN 9). MA glosses the word “vain” by “fruitless.”
DN 9: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
    "Now, when the monk is percipient of himself here, then from there to there, step by step, he touches the peak of perception. As he remains at the peak of perception, the thought occurs to him, 'Thinking is bad for me. Not thinking is better for me. If I were to think and will, this perception of mine would cease, and a grosser perception would appear. What if I were neither to think nor to will?' So he neither thinks nor wills, and as he is neither thinking nor willing, that perception ceases and another, grosser perception does not appear. He touches cessation. This, Potthapada, is how there is the alert step-by step attainment of the ultimate cessation of perception.


When this was said, the venerable Udāyin said to the Blessed One: “Venerable sir, perhaps the venerable Samiddhi spoke thus referring to [the principle]: ‘Whatever is felt is included in suffering.’”
BB: This statement is made by the Buddha at SN 36:11/ iv.216, with reference to the suffering inherent in all formations by reason of their impermanence. Though the statement itself is true, Samiddhi seems to have misinterpreted it to mean that all feeling is felt as suffering, which is patently false.

SN 36.11 http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nypo.html
    "Well spoken, monk, well spoken! While three feelings have been taught by me, the pleasant, the painful and the neutral, yet I have also said that whatever is felt is within suffering. This, however, was stated by me with reference to the impermanence of (all) conditioned phenomena [sankhara]. I have said it because conditioned phenomena are liable to destruction, to evanescence, to fading away, to cessation and to change. It is with reference to this that I have stated: 'Whatever is felt is within suffering.'
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:16 pm

“Ānanda, there are four kinds of persons to be found existing in the world. What four? Here some person kills living beings, takes what is not given, misconducts himself in sensual pleasures, speaks falsehood, speaks maliciously, speaks harshly, gossips; he is covetous, has a mind of ill will, and holds wrong view. On the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in a state of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, even in hell. ...
MA: This section is not the expounding of the Tathāgata’s knowledge of the great exposition of action, but the setting up of the outline for the purpose of presenting that exposition.


“Therein, Ānanda, when a recluse or brahmin says: ‘Indeed, there are evil actions, there is result of misconduct,’ I grant him this. When he says: ‘I saw a person here who killed living beings…and held wrong view, and I see that on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a state of deprivation…even in hell,’ I also grant him this. But when he says: ‘On the dissolution of the body, after death, everyone who kills living beings…and holds wrong view reappears in a state of deprivation…even in hell,’ I do not grant him this. And when he says: ‘Those who know thus know rightly; those who think otherwise are mistaken,’ I also do not grant him this. And when he obstinately adheres to what he himself has known, seen, and discovered, insisting: ‘Only this is true, anything else is wrong,’ I also do not grant him this. Why is that? Because, Ānanda, the Tathāgata’s knowledge of the great exposition of action is otherwise.
MA: This too is not the expounding of the knowledge of the great exposition of action, but is still the setting up of the outline. The purpose here is to show what can be accepted and what should be rejected in the claims of the outside recluses and brahmins. Briefly put, the propositions that report their direct observations can be accepted, but the generalisations they derive from those observations must be rejected.
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby Sam Vara » Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:28 am

MA: This too is not the expounding of the knowledge of the great exposition of action, but is still the setting up of the outline. The purpose here is to show what can be accepted and what should be rejected in the claims of the outside recluses and brahmins. Briefly put, the propositions that report their direct observations can be accepted, but the generalisations they derive from those observations must be rejected.


A commentary which appears very strange to a modern western sensibility. Most of us would be happy with the injunction to refrain from inappropriate generalisations; this is the problem of induction. But very few of us, I suspect, would know what to make of the "direct observations", and therefore be in no position to accept them. If someone were to tell me that they had observed white swans and on the basis of this they were prepared to tell me that all swans were white, then I would be wary of their generalisation because not only do I know of (potential and actual) counter-examples, I have seen the white swans themselves. But if someone were to tell me that they had observed a lying thieving fornicator appear in a bad place after their death, my puzzlement over any inappropriate generalisations would not be the main focus of my scepticism.
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Jun 24, 2012 8:18 pm

Hi Sam,

Good points. However, it also occurred to me that this is a case where the Buddha doesn't say that what people learn on other paths is all wrong, just some of the details and generalisations.

As in:
MN 11 Cula-sihanada Sutta: The Shorter Discourse on the Lion's Roar
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... tbb.html12.
"Though certain recluses and brahmans claim to propound the full understanding of all kinds of clinging... they describe the full understanding of clinging to sensual pleasures, clinging to views, and clinging to rules and observances without describing the full understanding of clinging to a doctrine of self. They do not understand one instance... therefore they describe only the full understanding of clinging to sensual pleasures, clinging to views, and clinging to rules and observances without describing the full understanding of clinging to a doctrine of self.

:anjali:
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby Sam Vara » Sun Jun 24, 2012 8:52 pm

However, it also occurred to me that this is a case where the Buddha doesn't say that what people learn on other paths is all wrong, just some of the details and generalisations.


Absolutely. Whether what they learn is right or wrong, however, I would have to take it on faith. I understand the principle of unjustified generalisation, but cannot even conceive what the basis of the generalisation (i.e. seeing a person of certain habits arising in a certain place after death) would actually "look" like.

My working hypothesis about the Buddha's response to the claims of other teachers is that if he referred to them but did not pass judgement, he probably agreed with them...
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Jun 24, 2012 8:59 pm

MA: Here begins the expounding of the knowledge of the great exposition of action.

“Therein, Ānanda,as to the person here who kills living beings, takes what is not given, misconducts himself in sensual pleasures, speaks falsehood, speaks maliciously, speaks harshly, gossips; he is covetous, has a mind of ill will, and holds wrong view. On the dissolution of the body, after death, he reappears in a state of deprivation, in an unhappy destination, in perdition, even in hell: either earlier he did an evil action to be felt as painful, or later he did an evil action to be felt as painful, or at the time of death he acquired and undertook wrong view.
MA: The person who was seen with the divine eye killing living beings, etc., is reborn in hell because of another evil deed he had done earlier than the deed of killing, etc., or because of an evil deed he did afterwards, or because of a wrong view he accepted at the time of death.

BB: Although the Pali seems to be saying that he was necessarily reborn in hell on account of some action other than the one he was seen performing, this should not be understood as an apodictic pronouncement but only as a statement of possibility. That is, while it may be true that he was reborn in hell because of the evil action he was seen performing, it is also possible that he was reborn there because of some other evil action he did earlier or later or because of wrong view.

Because of that, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a state of deprivation…even in hell. And since he has here killed living beings…and held wrong view, he will experience the result of that either here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.
BB: This statement shows that even if his evil kamma does not generate the mode of rebirth, it will still mature for him in some other way either in this life, in the next life, or in some more distant future life.


“Therein, Ānanda, as to the person here who kills living beings…and holds wrong view, and on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappears in a happy destination, even in the heavenly world: either earlier he did a good action to be felt as pleasant, or later he did a good action to be felt as pleasant, or at the time of death he acquired and undertook right view.
BB: In this case the heavenly rebirth must be due to some action other than the one he was seen performing, since an evil action cannot produce a fortunate mode of rebirth.

Because of that, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a happy destination, even in the heavenly world. But since he has here killed living beings…and held wrong view, he will experience the result of that either here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Jun 25, 2012 11:45 pm

“Therein, Ānanda, as to the person here who abstains from killing living beings…and holds right view, and on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappears in a happy destination, even in the heavenly world: either earlier he did a good action to be felt as pleasant, or later he did a good action to be felt as pleasant, or at the time of death he acquired and undertook right view. Because of that, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a happy destination, even in the heavenly world. And since he has here abstained from killing living beings …and held right view, he will experience the result of that either here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.

“Therein, Ānanda, as to the person here who abstains from killing living beings…and holds right view, and on the dissolution of the body, after death, reappears in a state of deprivation…even in hell: either earlier he did an evil action to be felt as painful, or later he did an evil action to be felt as painful, or at the time of death he acquired and undertook wrong view. Because of that, on the dissolution of the body, after death, he has reappeared in a state of deprivation…even in hell. But since he has here abstained from killing living beings…and held right view, he will experience the result of that either here and now, or in his next rebirth, or in some subsequent existence.

“Thus, Ānanda, there is action that is incapable and appears incapable; there is action that is incapable and appears capable; there is action that is capable and appears capable; and there is action that is capable and appears incapable.”

BB: MA explains abhabba, incapable, as the unwholesome (akusala), called “incapable” because it is devoid of the capacity for growth; and bhabba, capable, as the wholesome, called “capable” because it has the capacity for growth.

BB: This explanation sounds suspect; bhabba (Skt bhavya) may simply mean “potent, capable of producing results,” without implying any particular moral valuation. MA gives two explanations of the tetrad. The first devolves on taking the suffix -ābhāsa to mean “outshine” or “overcome,” and thus the four terms exemplify the way a kamma of one quality can “outshine” another in generating its result. The second explanation, which seems more cogent, takes - ābhāsa to mean “appears,” which I follow in the translation. On this explanation, the first type is illustrated by the person who kills living beings and is reborn in hell: his action is incapable (of good result) because it is unwholesome, and it appears incapable because, since he is reborn in hell, it seems to be the cause for his rebirth there. The second is illustrated by the person who kills living beings and is reborn in heaven: his action is incapable (of good result) because it is unwholesome, yet it appears capable because he is reborn in heaven; thus to the outside recluses and brahmins it seems to be the cause for his rebirth in heaven. The remaining two terms should be understood along the same lines, with appropriate changes.
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Re: MN136:Maha Kammavibhanga Sutta-The Great Exposition of Kamma

Postby kirk5a » Tue Jun 26, 2012 1:34 pm

SN 36.11 http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nypo.html
    "Well spoken, monk, well spoken! While three feelings have been taught by me, the pleasant, the painful and the neutral, yet I have also said that whatever is felt is within suffering. This, however, was stated by me with reference to the impermanence of (all) conditioned phenomena [sankhara]. I have said it because conditioned phenomena are liable to destruction, to evanescence, to fading away, to cessation and to change. It is with reference to this that I have stated: 'Whatever is felt is within suffering.'


That ought to settle once and for all the question of whether all that is impermanent is dukkha.
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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