Pali term: avijjā

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Buddha Vacana
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Pali term: avijjā

Post by Buddha Vacana » Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:33 am

avijjā: [a+vijjā] (the original context may be more user friendly)

nescience, ignorance.

Avijjā is defined at SN 12.2 as consisting of ignorance regarding the four noble truths:

“katamā ca, bhikkhave, avijjā? yaṃ kho, bhikkhave, dukkhe aññāṇaṃ, dukkhasamudaye aññāṇaṃ, dukkhanirodhe aññāṇaṃ, dukkhanirodhagāminiyā paṭipadāya aññāṇaṃ. ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, avijjā.


And what is ignorance? Not knowing suffering, not knowing the origination of suffering, not knowing the cessation of suffering, not knowing the way of practice leading to the cessation of suffering: This is called ignorance.



Other definitions relating to the five khandhas can be found in the Khandha Saṃyutta.
SN 22.113

— “‘avijjā avijjā’ti, bhante, vuccati. katamā nu kho, bhante, avijjā, kittāvatā ca avijjāgato hotī”ti?


— 'Ignorance, ignorance', it is said, Bhante. What, Bhante, is ignorance, and to what extent is one immersed in ignorance?

— “idha, bhikkhu, assutavā puthujjano rūpaṃ nappajānāti, rūpasamudayaṃ nappajānāti, rūpanirodhaṃ nappajānāti, rūpanirodhagāminiṃ paṭipadaṃ nappajānāti;


— Here, bhikkhu, an uninstructed ordinary person does not understand Form, does not understand the origin of Form, does not understand the cessation of Form, does not understand the way leading to the cessation of Form.

vedanaṃ nappajānāti, vedanāsamudayaṃ nappajānāti, vedanānirodhaṃ nappajānāti, vedanānirodhagāminiṃ paṭipadaṃ nappajānāti;


He does not understand Feeling, does not understand the origin of Feeling, does not understand the cessation of Feeling, does not understand the way leading to the cessation of Feeling.

saññaṃ nappajānāti, saññāsamudayaṃ nappajānāti, saññānirodhaṃ nappajānāti, saññānirodhagāminiṃ paṭipadaṃ nappajānāti;


He does not understand Perception, does not understand the origin of Perception, does not understand the cessation of Perception, does not understand the way leading to the cessation of Perception.

saṅkhāre nappajānāti, saṅkhārasamudayaṃ nappajānāti, saṅkhāranirodhaṃ nappajānāti, saṅkhāranirodhagāminiṃ paṭipadaṃ nappajānāti;


He does not understand Constructions, does not understand the origin of Constructions, does not understand the cessation of Constructions, does not understand the way leading to the cessation of Constructions.

viññāṇaṃ nappajānāti, viññāṇasamudayaṃ nappajānāti, viññāṇanirodhaṃ nappajānāti, viññāṇanirodhagāminiṃ paṭipadaṃ nappajānāti;


He does not understand Consciousness, does not understand the origin of Consciousness, does not understand the cessation of Consciousness, does not understand the way leading to the cessation of Consciousness.

ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhu, avijjā. ettāvatā ca avijjāgato hotī”ti.


This, bhikkhu, is called ignorance, and it is to this extent that one is immersed in ignorance.

SN 22.126

— “‘avijjā avijjā’ti, bhante, vuccati. katamā nu kho, bhante, avijjā, kittāvatā ca avijjāgato hotī”ti?


— 'Ignorance, ignorance', it is said, Bhante. What, Bhante, is ignorance, and to what extent is one immersed in ignorance?

— “idha, bhikkhu, assutavā puthujjano samudayadhammaṃ rūpaṃ ‘samudayadhammaṃ rūpan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; vayadhammaṃ rūpaṃ ‘vayadhammaṃ rūpan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; samudayavayadhammaṃ rūpaṃ ‘samudayavayadhammaṃ rūpan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti.


— Here, bhikkhu, an uninstructed ordinary person does not understand Form by nature subject to arising as it really is: 'Form is by nature subject to arising'. He does not understand Form by nature subject to passing away as it really is: 'Form is by nature subject to passing away'. He does not understand Form by nature subject to arising & passing away as it really is: 'Form is by nature subject to arising & passing away'.

samudayadhammaṃ vedanaṃ ‘samudayadhammā vedanā’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; vayadhammaṃ vedanaṃ ‘vayadhammā vedanā’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; samudayavayadhammaṃ vedanaṃ ‘samudayavayadhammā vedanā’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti.


He does not understand Feeling by nature subject to arising as it really is: 'Feeling is by nature subject to arising'. He does not understand Feeling by nature subject to passing away as it really is: 'Feeling is by nature subject to passing away'. He does not understand Feeling by nature subject to arising & passing away as it really is: 'Feeling is by nature subject to arising & passing away'.

samudayadhammaṃ saññaṃ ‘samudayadhammaṃ saññan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; vayadhammaṃ saññaṃ ‘vayadhammaṃ saññan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; samudayavayadhammaṃ saññaṃ ‘samudayavayadhammaṃ saññan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti.


He does not understand Perception by nature subject to arising as it really is: 'Perception is by nature subject to arising'. He does not understand Perception by nature subject to passing away as it really is: 'Perception is by nature subject to passing away'. He does not understand Perception by nature subject to arising & passing away as it really is: 'Perception is by nature subject to arising & passing away'.

samudayadhamme saṅkhāre ‘samudayadhammā saṅkhārā’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; vayadhamme saṅkhāre ‘vayadhammā saṅkhārā’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; samudayavayadhamme saṅkhāre ‘samudayavayadhammā saṅkhārā’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti.


He does not understand Constructions by nature subject to arising as it really is: 'Constructions is by nature subject to arising'. He does not understand Constructions by nature subject to passing away as it really is: 'Constructions is by nature subject to passing away'. He does not understand Constructions by nature subject to arising & passing away as it really is: 'Constructions is by nature subject to arising & passing away'.

samudayadhammaṃ viññāṇaṃ ‘samudayadhammaṃ viññāṇan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; vayadhammaṃ viññāṇaṃ ‘vayadhammaṃ viññāṇan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti; samudayavayadhammaṃ viññāṇaṃ ‘samudayavayadhammaṃ viññāṇan’ti yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti. ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhu, avijjā; ettāvatā ca avijjāgato hotī”ti.


He does not understand Consciousness by nature subject to arising as it really is: 'Consciousness is by nature subject to arising'. He does not understand Consciousness by nature subject to passing away as it really is: 'Consciousness is by nature subject to passing away'. He does not understand Consciousness by nature subject to arising & passing away as it really is: 'Consciousness is by nature subject to arising & passing away'.

ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhu, avijjā. ettāvatā ca avijjāgato hotī”ti.


This, bhikkhu, is called ignorance, and it is to this extent that one is immersed in ignorance.

SN 22.129

— “‘avijjā avijjā’ti, bhante, vuccati. katamā nu kho, bhante, avijjā, kittāvatā ca avijjāgato hotī”ti?


— 'Ignorance, ignorance', it said, Bhante. What, Bhante, is ignorance, and to what extent is one immersed in ignorance?

— “idhāvuso assutavā puthujjano rūpassa assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti, vedanāya assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti, saññāya assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti, saṅkhārānaṃ assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti, viññāṇassa assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti.


— Here, friend, an uninstructed ordinary person does not understand as it really is the gratification, the danger, and the escape in regard to Form, he does not understand as it really is the gratification, the danger, and the escape in regard to Feeling, he does not understand as it really is the gratification, the danger, and the escape in regard to Perception, he does not understand as it really is the gratification, the danger, and the escape in regard to Fabrications, he does not understand as it really is the gratification, the danger, and the escape in regard to Consciousness.

— ayaṃ vuccatāvuso, avijjā; ettāvatā ca avijjāgato hotī”ti.


This, friend, is called ignorance, and it is to this extent that one is immersed in ignorance.

At SN 22.84, avijjā is likened to a 'dense thicket' (tibbo vanasaṇḍo) along the path to nibbāna. At MN 19, it is likened to a 'decoy' (okacara) set up by a hunter (Māra) in order to lure a herd of deers on a false path that will bring them calamity and disaster. At MN 105, avijjā is likened to a poison (visadosa) smeared on an arrow (salla) which has wounded someone. The arrow represents taṇhā, while the poison is spread out by chanda·rāga·byāpāda.

Avijjā is one of the three āsavas, along with kāma and bhava.

Avijjā is one of the four oghas (floods), as well as one of the four yogas (bonds), and is juxtaposed in both sets with kāma, bhava and diṭṭhi.
AN 4.10

Avijjāyogo ca kathaṃ hoti? Idha, bhikkhave, ekacco channaṃ phassāyatanānaṃ samudayañca atthaṅgamañca assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathā·bhūtaṃ nappajānāti. Tassa channaṃ phassāyatanānaṃ samudayañca atthaṅgamañca assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathā·bhūtaṃ appajānato yā chasu phassāyatanesu avijjā aññāṇaṃ sānuseti. Ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, avijjāyogo.


"And how is there the yoke of ignorance? There is the case where a certain person does not discern, as it actually is present, the origination, the passing away, the allure, the drawbacks, & the escape from the six sense media. When he does not discern, as it actually is present, the origination, the passing away, the allure, the drawbacks, & the escape from the six sense media, then — with regard to ignorance concerning the six sense media — he is obsessed with not-knowing. This is the yoke of ignorance.

Avijjā is one of the uddhambhāgiyā saṃyojanā (higher fetters), along with rūpa·rāga, arūpa·rāga, māna, and uddhacca.

Avijjā is also the last of the seven anusayas, along with kāma·rāga, paṭigha, diṭṭhi, vicikiccha, māna and bhava·rāga. As an anusaya, avijjā is related to adukkham·asukhā vedanā:
MN 148

adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya phuṭṭho samāno tassā vedanāya samudayañca atthaṅgamañca assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti. tassa avijjānusayo anuseti.


If, when touched by a feeling of neither pleasure nor pain, one does not discern, as it actually is present, the origination, passing away, allure, drawback, or escape from that feeling, then one's ignorance-obsession gets obsessed.
MN 44

“adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya avijjānusayo anusetī”ti...


Ignorance-obsession gets obsessed with neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling...

“sabbāya adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya avijjānusayo anusetī”ti?...


Does ignorance-obsession get obsessed with all neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling?...

“na sabbāya adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya avijjānusayo anusetī”ti...


No, ignorance-obsession does not get obsessed with all neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling...

“adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya kiṃ pahātabban”ti?...


What is to be abandoned with regard to neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling?...

“adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya avijjānusayo pahātabbo”ti...


Ignorance-obsession is to be abandoned with regard to neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling...

“sabbāya adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya avijjānusayo pahātabbo”ti?...


Is ignorance-obsession to be abandoned with regard to all neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling?...

na sabbāya adukkhamasukhāya vedanāya avijjānusayo pahātabbo...


No, ignorance-obsession is not to be abandoned with regard to all neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling...

idhāvuso visākha, bhikkhu sukhassa ca pahānā, dukkhassa ca pahānā, pubbeva somanassadomanassānaṃ atthaṅgamā, adukkhamasukhaṃ upekkhāsatipārisuddhiṃ catutthaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati. avijjaṃ tena pajahati, na tattha avijjānusayo anusetī”ti.


There is the case where a monk, with the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. With that he abandons ignorance. No ignorance-obsession gets obsessed there.

Avijjā is also related to 'that which is felt born of contact with ignorance' (avijjā·samphassa·ja vedayita):
SN 22.47

atthi, bhikkhave, mano, atthi dhammā, atthi avijjādhātu. avijjāsamphassajena, bhikkhave, vedayitena phuṭṭhassa assutavato puthujjanassa ‘asmī’tipissa hoti; ‘ayamahamasmī’tipissa hoti; ‘bhavissan’tipissa hoti; ‘na bhavissan’tipissa hoti; ‘rūpī bhavissan’tipissa hoti; ‘arūpī bhavissan’tipissa hoti; ‘saññī bhavissan’tipissa hoti; ‘asaññī bhavissan’tipissa hoti; ‘nevasaññīnāsaññī bhavissan’tipissa hoti”.


Now, there is the intellect, there are ideas (mental qualities), there is the property of ignorance. To an uninstructed run-of-the-mill person, touched by experience born of the contact of ignorance, there occur (the thoughts): 'I am,' 'I am thus,' 'I shall be,' 'I shall not be,' 'I shall be possessed of form,' 'I shall be formless,' 'I shall be percipient (conscious),' 'I shall be non-percipient,' or 'I shall be neither percipient nor non-percipient.'

“tiṭṭhanteva kho, bhikkhave, tattheva pañcindriyāni. athettha sutavato ariyasāvakassa avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjati. tassa avijjāvirāgā vijjuppādā ‘asmī’tipissa na hoti; ‘ayamahamasmī’tipissa na hoti; ‘bhavissan’tipissa na hoti; ‘na bhavissan’tipissa na hoti; ‘rūpī bhavissan’tipissa na hoti; ‘arūpī bhavissan’tipissa na hoti; ‘saññī bhavissan’tipissa na hoti; ‘asaññī bhavissan’tipissa na hoti; ‘nevasaññīnāsaññībhavissan’tipissa na hotī”ti.


The five faculties, monks, continue as they were. And with regard to them the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones abandons ignorance and gives rise to clear knowing. Owing to the fading of ignorance and the arising of clear knowing, (the thoughts) — 'I am,' 'I am this,' 'I shall be,' 'I shall not be,' 'I shall be possessed of form,' 'I shall be formless,' 'I shall be percipient (conscious),' 'I shall be non-percipient,' and 'I shall be neither percipient nor non-percipient' — do not occur to him.
SN 22.81

avijjāsamphassajena, bhikkhave, vedayitena phuṭṭhassa assutavato puthujjanassa uppannā taṇhā


To an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person, touched by that which is felt born of contact with ignorance, craving arises.

At AN 3.67, avijjā is explained as having moha for synonym, although it is arguable that, given the position of avijjā among the anusayas, it would refer to a deeper type of mental factor related to ignorance, that may not be active all the time, of which moha would be the active expression through delusion.

Avijjā is also the root cause in paṭicca·samuppāda, giving rise to saṅkhāras. As mentioned above, the term is defined in this context at SN 12.2 as not knowing the four ariya·saccas. The role that avijjā plays in regard to other akusala dhammas is also referred to outside of the context of paṭicca·samuppāda:
SN 20.1

“seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, kūṭāgārassa yā kāci gopānasiyo sabbā tā kūṭaṅgamā kūṭasamosaraṇā kūṭasamugghātā sabbā tā samugghātaṃ gacchanti; evameva kho, bhikkhave, ye keci akusalā dhammā sabbe te avijjāmūlakā avijjāsamosaraṇā avijjāsamugghātā, sabbe te samugghātaṃ gacchanti.


Just as the rafters in a peak-roofed house all go to the roof-peak, incline to the roof-peak, converge at the roof-peak, and all are removed when the roof-peak is removed; in the same way, all unwholesome qualities are rooted in ignorance and converge upon ignorance, and all are removed when ignorance is removed.
SN 45.1

“avijjā, bhikkhave, pubbaṅgamā akusalānaṃ dhammānaṃ samāpattiyā, anvadeva ahirikaṃ anottappaṃ. avijjāgatassa, bhikkhave, aviddasuno micchādiṭṭhi pahoti; micchādiṭṭhissa micchāsaṅkappo pahoti; micchāsaṅkappassa micchāvācā pahoti; micchāvācassa micchākammanto pahoti; micchākammantassa micchāājīvo pahoti; micchāājīvassa micchāvāyāmo pahoti; micchāvāyāmassa micchāsati pahoti; micchāsatissa micchāsamādhi pahoti.


Monks, ignorance is the leader in the attainment of unskillful qualities, followed by lack of conscience & lack of concern. In an unknowledgeable person, immersed in ignorance, wrong view arises. In one of wrong view, wrong resolve arises. In one of wrong resolve, wrong speech arises. In one of wrong speech, wrong action arises. In one of wrong action, wrong livelihood arises. In one of wrong livelihood, wrong effort arises. In one of wrong effort, wrong mindfulness arises. In one of wrong mindfulness, wrong concentration arises.

Avijjā gives rise to āsavas:
AN 6.63

“katamo ca, bhikkhave, āsavānaṃ nidānasambhavo? avijjā, bhikkhave, āsavānaṃ nidānasambhavo...


And what is the cause by which fermentations come into play? Ignorance is the cause by which fermentations come into play...

“katamo ca, bhikkhave, āsavanirodho? avijjānirodho, bhikkhave, āsavanirodho.


And what is the cessation of fermentations? From the cessation of ignorance is the cessation of fermentations

As we will see below, the relationship between avijjā and āsavas is reciprocal. Avijjā is also specificly said to give rise to craving:
AN 4.50

avijjānivutā posā, piyarūpābhinandino.


Men hindered by ignorance seek delight in pleasant things
AN 10.62

“bhavataṇhāmpāhaṃ, bhikkhave, sāhāraṃ vadāmi, no anāhāraṃ. ko cāhāro bhavataṇhāya? ‘avijjā’tissa vacanīyaṃ.


I say, bhikkhus, that craving for existence has a nutriment; it is not without nutriment. And what is the nutriment for craving for existence? It should be said: ignorance.

Avijjā appears due to specific factors. The five nīvaraṇas:
AN 10.61

“purimā, bhikkhave, koṭi na paññāyati avijjāya: ‘ito pubbe avijjā nāhosi, atha pacchā samabhavī’ti. evañcetaṃ, bhikkhave, vuccati, atha ca pana paññāyati: ‘idappaccayā avijjā’ti. avijjampāhaṃ, bhikkhave, sāhāraṃ vadāmi, no anāhāraṃ. ko cāhāro avijjāya? ‘pañca nīvaraṇā’tissa vacanīyaṃ.


Bhikkhus, this is said: ‘A first point of ignorance, bhikkhus, is not seen such that before this there was no ignorance and afterward it came into being.’ Still, ignorance is seen to have a specific condition. I say, bhikkhus, that ignorance has a nutriment; it is not without nutriment. And what is the nutriment for ignorance? It should be said: the five hindrances.

Ayoniso manasikāra:
MN 2

“katame ca, bhikkhave, dhammā na manasikaraṇīyā ye dhamme manasi karoti? yassa, bhikkhave, dhamme manasikaroto anuppanno vā kāmāsavo uppajjati, uppanno vā kāmāsavo pavaḍḍhati; anuppanno vā bhavāsavo uppajjati, uppanno vā bhavāsavo pavaḍḍhati; anuppanno vā avijjāsavo uppajjati, uppanno vā avijjāsavo pavaḍḍhati. ime dhammā na manasikaraṇīyā ye dhamme manasi karoti...


And what are the ideas unfit for attention that he attends to? Whatever ideas such that, when he attends to them, the unarisen fermentation of sensuality arises in him, and the arisen fermentation of sensuality increases; the unarisen fermentation of becoming arises in him, and arisen fermentation of becoming increases; the unarisen fermentation of ignorance arises in him, and the arisen fermentation of ignorance increases. These are the ideas unfit for attention that he attends to...

“so evaṃ ayoniso manasi karoti: ‘ahosiṃ nu kho ahaṃ atītamaddhānaṃ? na nu kho ahosiṃ atītamaddhānaṃ? kiṃ nu kho ahosiṃ atītamaddhānaṃ? kathaṃ nu kho ahosiṃ atītamaddhānaṃ? kiṃ hutvā kiṃ ahosiṃ nu kho ahaṃ atītamaddhānaṃ? bhavissāmi nu kho ahaṃ anāgatamaddhānaṃ? na nu kho bhavissāmi anāgatamaddhānaṃ? kiṃ nu kho bhavissāmi anāgatamaddhānaṃ? kathaṃ nu kho bhavissāmi anāgatamaddhānaṃ? kiṃ hutvā kiṃ bhavissāmi nu kho ahaṃ anāgatamaddhānan’ti? etarahi vā paccuppannamaddhānaṃ ajjhattaṃ kathaṃkathī hoti: ‘ahaṃ nu khosmi? no nu khosmi? kiṃ nu khosmi? kathaṃ nu khosmi? ayaṃ nu kho satto kuto āgato? so kuhiṃ gāmī bhavissatī’ti?


"This is how he attends inappropriately: 'Was I in the past? Was I not in the past? What was I in the past? How was I in the past? Having been what, what was I in the past? Shall I be in the future? Shall I not be in the future? What shall I be in the future? How shall I be in the future? Having been what, what shall I be in the future?' Or else he is inwardly perplexed about the immediate present: 'Am I? Am I not? What am I? How am I? Where has this being come from? Where is it bound?'

“tassa evaṃ ayoniso manasikaroto channaṃ diṭṭhīnaṃ aññatarā diṭṭhi uppajjati. ‘atthi me attā’ti vā assa saccato thetato diṭṭhi uppajjati; ‘natthi me attā’ti vā assa saccato thetato diṭṭhi uppajjati; ‘attanāva attānaṃ sañjānāmī’ti vā assa saccato thetato diṭṭhi uppajjati; ‘attanāva anattānaṃ sañjānāmī’ti vā assa saccato thetato diṭṭhi uppajjati; ‘anattanāva attānaṃ sañjānāmī’ti vā assa saccato thetato diṭṭhi uppajjati; atha vā panassa evaṃ diṭṭhi hoti: ‘yo me ayaṃ attā vado vedeyyo tatra tatra kalyāṇapāpakānaṃ kammānaṃ vipākaṃ paṭisaṃvedeti so kho pana me ayaṃ attā nicco dhuvo sassato avipariṇāmadhammo sassatisamaṃ tatheva ṭhassatī’ti. idaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, diṭṭhigataṃ diṭṭhigahanaṃ diṭṭhikantāraṃ diṭṭhivisūkaṃ diṭṭhivipphanditaṃ diṭṭhisaṃyojanaṃ. diṭṭhisaṃyojanasaṃyutto, bhikkhave, assutavā puthujjano na parimuccati jātiyā jarāya maraṇena sokehi paridevehi dukkhehi domanassehi upāyāsehi; ‘na parimuccati dukkhasmā’ti vadāmi.


"As he attends inappropriately in this way, one of six kinds of view arises in him: The view I have a self arises in him as true & established, or the view I have no self... or the view It is precisely by means of self that I perceive self... or the view It is precisely by means of self that I perceive not-self... or the view It is precisely by means of not-self that I perceive self arises in him as true & established, or else he has a view like this: This very self of mine — the knower that is sensitive here & there to the ripening of good & bad actions — is the self of mine that is constant, everlasting, eternal, not subject to change, and will stay just as it is for eternity. This is called a thicket of views, a wilderness of views, a contortion of views, a writhing of views, a fetter of views. Bound by a fetter of views, the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person is not freed from birth, aging, & death, from sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair. He is not freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress.

Āsavas:
MN 9

āsavasamudayā avijjāsamudayo, āsavanirodhā avijjānirodho


With the arising of the taints there is the arising of ignorance. With the cessation of the taints there is the cessation of ignorance.

A number of factors leading to the cessation of avijjā are also mentioned in the suttas. Kāyagatāsati:
AN 1.574

“ekadhamme, bhikkhave, bhāvite bahulīkate avijjā pahīyati... katamasmiṃ ekadhamme? kāyagatāya satiyā.


When one thing, bhikkhus, is developed and cultivated, ignorance is abandoned... Which thing? Mindfulness directed to the body.

Anicca·saññā:
SN 22.102

“aniccasaññā, bhikkhave, bhāvitā bahulīkatā sabbaṃ kāmarāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ rūparāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ bhavarāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ avijjaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ asmimānaṃ samūhanati”.


Bhikkhus, when the perception of impermanence is developed and cultivated, it eliminates all sensual lust, it eliminates all lust for existence, it eliminates all ignorance, it uproots all conceit ‘I am.’

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“kathaṃ bhāvitā ca, bhikkhave, aniccasaññā kathaṃ bahulīkatā sabbaṃ kāmarāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ rūparāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ bhavarāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ avijjaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ asmimānaṃ samūhanati? ‘iti rūpaṃ, iti rūpassa samudayo, iti rūpassa atthaṅgamo; iti vedanā, iti vedanāya samudayo, iti vedanāya atthaṅgamo; iti saññā, iti saññāya samudayo, iti saññāya atthaṅgamo; iti saṅkhārā, iti saṅkhārānaṃ samudayo, iti saṅkhārānaṃ atthaṅgamo; iti viññāṇaṃ, iti viññāṇassa samudayo, iti viññāṇassa atthaṅgamo’ti. evaṃ bhāvitā kho, bhikkhave, aniccasaññā evaṃ bahulīkatā sabbaṃ kāmarāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ rūparāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ bhavarāgaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ avijjaṃ pariyādiyati, sabbaṃ asmimānaṃ samūhanatī”ti.


And how, bhikkhus, is the perception of impermanence developed and cultivated so that it eliminates all sensual lust, eliminates all lust for existence, eliminates all ignorance, and uproots all conceit ‘I am’? ‘Such is form, such its origin, such its passing away; such is feeling, such its origin, such its passing away; such is perception, such its origin, such its passing away; such are volitional formations, such their origin, such their passing away; such is consciousness, such its origin, such its passing away’: that is how the perception of impermanence is developed and cultivated so that it eliminates all sensual lust, eliminates all lust for existence, eliminates all ignorance, and uproots all conceit ‘I am.’
SN 35.79

— “katamo pana, bhante, eko dhammo yassa pahānā bhikkhuno avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjatī”ti?


— “And what is that one thing, venerable sir, through the abandoning of which ignorance is abandoned by a bhikkhu and true knowledge arises?”

— “avijjā kho, bhikkhu, eko dhammo yassa pahānā bhikkhuno avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjatī”ti.


— “Ignorance, bhikkhu, is that one thing through the abandoning of which ignorance is abandoned by a bhikkhu and true knowledgearises.”

— “kathaṃ pana, bhante, jānato, kathaṃ passato bhikkhuno avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjatī”ti?


— “But, venerable sir, how should a bhikkhu know, how should he see, for ignorance to be abandoned by him and true knowledge to arise?”

— “cakkhuṃ kho, bhikkhu, aniccato jānato passato avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjati. rūpe aniccato jānato passato avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjati. cakkhuviññāṇaṃ... cakkhusamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ cakkhusamphassapaccayā uppajjati vedayitaṃ sukhaṃ vā dukkhaṃ vā adukkhamasukhaṃ vā tampi aniccato jānato passato avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjati. sotaṃ... sadde... sotaviññāṇaṃ... sotasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ sotasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... ghānaṃ... gandhe... ghānaviññāṇaṃ... ghānasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ ghānasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... jivhaṃ... rase... jivhaviññāṇaṃ... jivhasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ jivhasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... kāyaṃ... phoṭṭhabbe... kāyaviññāṇaṃ... kāyasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ kāyasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... manaṃ... dhamme... manoviññāṇaṃ... manosamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ manosamphassapaccayā uppajjati... vedayitaṃ sukhaṃ vā dukkhaṃ vā adukkhamasukhaṃ vā tampi aniccato jānato passato avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjati. evaṃ kho, bhikkhu, jānato evaṃ passato avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjatī”ti.


— “Bhikkhu, when one knows and sees the eye as impermanent, ignorance is abandoned and true knowledge arises. When one knows and sees forms as impermanent … When one knows and sees eye-consciousness... eye-contact... whatever feeling arises with eye-contact as condition—whether pleasant or painful or neither-painful-norpleasant... the ear... sounds... ear-consciousness... ear-contact... whatever feeling arises with ear-contact... the nose... smells... nose-consciousness... nose-contact... whatever feeling arises with nose-contact... the tongue... tastes... tongue-consciousness... tongue-contact... whatever feeling arises with tongue-contact... the body... touches... body-consciousness... body-contact... whatever feeling arises with body-contact... the mind... mental objects... mind-consciousness... mind-contact... When one knows and sees as impermanent whatever feeling arises with mind-contact as condition—whether pleasant or painful or neither-painful-norpleasant—ignorance is abandoned and true knowledge arises. When one knows and sees thus, bhikkhu, ignorance is abandoned and true knowledge arises.”
SN 35.80

“kathaṃ pana, bhante, jānato, kathaṃ passato avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjatī”ti?


“But, venerable sir, how should a bhikkhu know, how should he see, for ignorance to be abandoned by him and true knowledge to arise?”

“idha, bhikkhu, bhikkhuno sutaṃ hoti: ‘sabbe dhammā nālaṃ abhinivesāyā’ti. evañcetaṃ, bhikkhu, bhikkhuno sutaṃ hoti: ‘sabbe dhammā nālaṃ abhinivesāyā’ti, so sabbaṃ dhammaṃ abhijānāti, sabbaṃ dhammaṃ abhiññāya sabbaṃ dhammaṃ parijānāti, sabbaṃ dhammaṃ pariññāya sabbanimittāni aññato passati, cakkhuṃ aññato passati, rūpe... cakkhuviññāṇaṃ... cakkhusamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ cakkhusamphassapaccayā uppajjati vedayitaṃ sukhaṃ vā dukkhaṃ vā adukkhamasukhaṃ vā tampi aññato passati... sotaṃ... sadde... sotaviññāṇaṃ... sotasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ sotasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... ghānaṃ... gandhe... ghānaviññāṇaṃ... ghānasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ ghānasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... jivhaṃ... rase... jivhaviññāṇaṃ... jivhasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ jivhasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... kāyaṃ... phoṭṭhabbe... kāyaviññāṇaṃ... kāyasamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ kāyasamphassapaccayā uppajjati... manaṃ aññato passati, dhamme... manoviññāṇaṃ... manosamphassaṃ... yampidaṃ manosamphassapaccayā uppajjati vedayitaṃ sukhaṃ vā dukkhaṃ vā adukkhamasukhaṃ vā tampi aññato passati. evaṃ kho, bhikkhu, jānato evaṃ passato bhikkhuno avijjā pahīyati, vijjā uppajjatī”ti.


“Here, bhikkhu, a bhikkhu has heard, ‘Nothing is worth adhering to.’ When a bhikkhu has heard, ‘Nothing is worth adhering to,’ he directly knows everything. Having directly known everything, he fully understands everything. Having fully understood everything, he sees all signs differently. He sees the eye differently, he sees forms differently... eye-consciousness... eye-contact... whatever feeling arises with eye-contact... the nose... smells... nose-consciousness... nose-contact... whatever feeling arises with nose-contact... the tongue... tastes... tongue-consciousness... tongue-contact... whatever feeling arises with tongue-contact... the body... touches... body-consciousness... body-contact... whatever feeling arises with body-contact... the mind... mental objects... mind-consciousness... mind-contact... whatever feeling arises with mind-contact as condition ... that too he sees differently. When one knows and sees thus, bhikkhu, ignorance is abandoned and true knowledge arises.”

Samādhi:
AN 6.24

“chahi, bhikkhave, dhammehi samannāgato bhikkhu himavantaṃ pabbatarājaṃ padāleyya, ko pana vādo chavāya avijjāya! katamehi chahi?


“Bhikkhus, possessing six qualities, a bhikkhu could break the Himalayas, the king of mountains, how much more then [that] low ignorance! What six?

idha, bhikkhave, bhikkhu samādhissa samāpattikusalo hoti,


Here, a bhikkhu is skilled in attaining of concentration;

samādhissa ṭhitikusalo hoti,


skilled in maintaining concentration;

samādhissa vuṭṭhānakusalo hoti,


skilled in emerging from concentration;

samādhissa kallitakusalo hoti,


skilled in fitness for concentration;

samādhissa gocarakusalo hoti,


skilled in the area of concentration;

samādhissa abhinīhārakusalo hoti.


skilled in resolution regarding concentration.

Paññā:
AN 2.31

vipassanā, bhikkhave, bhāvitā kamatthamanubhoti? paññā bhāvīyati. paññā bhāvitā kamatthamanubhoti? yā avijjā sā pahīyati.


When insight is developed, what purpose does it serve? Discernment is developed. And when discernment is developed, what purpose does it serve? Ignorance is abandoned.

Abhiññā:
SN 45.159

katame ca, bhikkhave, dhammā abhiññā pahātabbā? avijjā ca bhavataṇhā ca


What, monks, are the states to be abandoned with higher knowledge? They are ignorance and the desire for [further] becoming.

Cultivating appamāda and being ātāpī:
MN 4

ayaṃ kho me, brāhmaṇa, rattiyā paṭhame yāme paṭhamā vijjā adhigatā, avijjā vihatā vijjā uppannā, tamo vihato āloko uppanno, yathā taṃ appamattassa ātāpino pahitattassa viharato.


This was the first knowledge I attained in the first watch of the night. Ignorance was destroyed; knowledge arose; darkness was destroyed; light arose — as happens in one who is heedful, ardent, & resolute.

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