AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

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AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

Post by mikenz66 » Sat Oct 04, 2014 5:22 am

AN 3.61 [AN i 173] Titthāyatana Sutta: Sectarian
Translated by Bhikkhu Bodhi


http://suttacentral.net/en/an3.61

"Bhikkhus, there are these three sectarian tenets [429] which, when questioned, interrogated, and cross-examined by the wise, and taken to their conclusion, will eventuate in non-doing. [430] What are the three?

(1) “There are, bhikkhus, some ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by what was done in the past.’ (2) There are other ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by God’s creative activity.’ (3) And there are still other ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that occurs without a cause or condition.’ [431]

(1) “Bhikkhus, I approached those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by past deeds,’ [432] and I said to them: ‘Is it true that you venerable ones hold such a doctrine and view?’ When I ask them this, they affirm it. Then I say to them: ‘In such a case, it is due to past deeds that you might destroy life, take what is not given, indulge in sexual activity, speak falsehood, utter divisive speech, speak harshly, indulge in idle chatter; that you might be full of longing, have a mind of ill will, and hold wrong view.’ [433]

“Those who fall back on past deeds as the essential truth have no desire to do what should be done and to avoid doing what should not be done, nor do they make an effort in this respect. Since they do not apprehend as true and valid anything that should be done or should not be done, they are muddle-minded, they do not guard themselves, and even the personal designation ‘ascetic’ could not be legitimately applied to them. This was my first legitimate refutation of those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view.

(2) “Then, bhikkhus, I approached those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by God’s creative activity,’ and I said to them: ‘Is it true that you venerable ones hold such a doctrine and view?’ When I ask them this, they affirm it. Then I say to them: ‘In such a case, it is due to God’s creative activity that you might destroy life … and hold wrong view.’

“Those who fall back on God’s creative activity as the essential truth have no desire to do what should be done and to avoid doing what should not be done, nor do they make an effort in this respect. Since they do not apprehend as true and valid anything that should be done or should not be done, they are muddle-minded, they do not guard themselves, and even the personal designation ‘ascetic’ could not be legitimately applied to them. This was my second legitimate refutation of those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view.

(3) “Then, bhikkhus, I approached those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-painnor-pleasure—all that occurs without a cause or condition,’ and I said to them: ‘Is it true that you venerable ones hold such a doctrine and view?’ When I ask them this, they affirm it. Then I say to them: ‘In such a case, it is without a cause or condition that you might destroy life … and hold wrong view.’

“Those who fall back on absence of cause and condition as the essential truth have no desire to do what should be done and to avoid doing what should not be done, nor do they make an effort in this respect. Since they do not apprehend as true and valid anything that should be done or should not be done, they are muddle-minded, they do not guard themselves, and even the personal designation ‘ascetic’ could not be legitimately applied to them. This was my third legitimate refutation of those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view.

“These, bhikkhus, are the three sectarian tenets which, when questioned, interrogated, and cross-examined by the wise, and taken to their conclusion, will eventuate in non-doing.

“But, bhikkhus, this Dhamma taught by me is unrefuted, undefiled, irreproachable, and uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins. [434] And what is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, irreproachable, and uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins?

“‘These are the six elements’: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins. ‘These are the six bases for contact’ … ‘These are the eighteen mental examinations’ … ‘These are the four noble truths’: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, irreproachable, and uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins.

“When it was said: ‘“These are the six elements”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ for what reason was this said? There are these six elements: the earth element, the water element, the fire element, the air element, the space element, and the consciousness element. [435]When it was said: ‘“These are the six elements”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ it is because of this that this was said.

“When it was said: ‘“These are the six bases for contact”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ for what reason was this said? There are these six bases for contact: the eye as a base for contact, the ear as a base for contact, the nose as a base for contact, the tongue as a base for contact, the body as a base for contact, and the mind as a base for contact. When it was said: ‘“These are the six bases for contact”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ it is because of this that this was said.

“When it was said: ‘“These are the eighteen mental examinations”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ for what reason was this said? [436] Having seen a form with the eye, one examines a form that is a basis for joy; one examines a form that is a basis for dejection; one examines a form that is a basis for equanimity. Having heard a sound with the ear … Having smelled an odor with the nose … Having tasted a taste with the tongue … Having felt a tactile object with the body … Having cognized a mental phenomenon with the mind, one examines a mental phenomenon that is a basis for joy; one examines a mental phenomenon that is a basis for dejection; one examines a mental phenomenon that is a basis for equanimity. When it was said: ‘“These are the eighteen mental examinations”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ it is because of this that this was said.

“When it was said: ‘“These are the four noble truths”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted … uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ for what reason was this said? In dependence on the six elements the descent of a future embryo occurs. [437] When the descent takes place, there is name-and-form; with name-and-form as condition, there are the six sense bases; with the six sense bases as condition, there is contact; with contact as condition, there is feeling. Now it is for one who feels that I proclaim: ‘This is suffering,’ and ‘This is the origin of suffering,’ and ‘This is the cessation of suffering,’ and ‘This is the way leading to the cessation of suffering.’

“And what, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of suffering? Birth is suffering, old age is suffering, illness is suffering, death is suffering; sorrow, lamentation, pain, dejection, and anguish are suffering; not to get what one wants is suffering; in brief, the five aggregates subject to clinging are suffering. This is called the noble truth of suffering.

“And what, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of the origin of suffering? With ignorance as condition, volitional activities come to be; with volitional activities as condition, consciousness; with consciousness as condition, name-and-form; with name-and-form as condition, the six sense bases; with the six sense bases as condition, contact; with contact as condition, feeling; with feeling as condition, craving; with craving as condition, clinging; with clinging as condition, existence; with existence as condition, birth; with birth as condition, old age and death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, dejection, and anguish come to be. Such is the origin of this whole mass of suffering. This is called the noble truth of the origin of suffering. [438]

“And what, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of the cessation of suffering? With the remainderless fading away and cessation of ignorance comes cessation of volitional activities; with the cessation of volitional activities, cessation of consciousness; with the cessation of consciousness, cessation of name-andform; with the cessation of name-and-form, cessation of the six sense bases; with the cessation of the six sense bases, cessation of contact; with the cessation of contact, cessation of feeling; with the cessation of feeling, cessation of craving; with the cessation of craving, cessation of clinging; with the cessation of clinging, cessation of existence; with the cessation of existence, cessation of birth; with the cessation of birth, old age and death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, dejection, and anguish cease. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering. This is called the noble truth of the cessation of suffering.

“And what, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of the way leading to the cessation of suffering? It is just this noble eightfold path; that is, right view, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. This is called the noble truth of the way leading to the cessation of suffering.

“When it was said: ‘“These are the four noble truths”: this, bhikkhus, is the Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, irreproachable, and uncensured by wise ascetics and brahmins,’ it is because of this that this was said.”

Notes


429. “Sectarian tenets” renders titthāyatanāni, lit. “bases of sects.” The word tittha (Skt tīrtha), which originally meant a ford in a river, was used to designate religious teachings, probably in the sense that these teachings provide a “ford” for crossing the stream of defilements and reaching the far shore of liberation (see MN 34, where this metaphor governs a short discourse). Mp explains that the sects (tittha) are the sixty-two views (see DN 1.1.29–3.29, I 12–39); the founders of the sects (titthakara) are those who formulate those views; and the followers of the sects (titthiya) are those who approve of the views. The great teachers in Jainism are called in Skt tīrthaṅkara.

430. Parampi gantvā akiriyāya saṇṭhahanti. Mp glosses paraṃ with paramparā, “lineage”: “Even if they have gone to one of the three kinds of lineage, the lineage of teachers, the lineage of beliefs, and the lineage of [one’s] individual existences” (ācariyaparamparā laddhiparamparā attabhāvaparamparā ti etesu yaṃkiñci paramparaṃ gantvā pi). It is hard to see how this has any relevance to the context. Since paraṃ can also mean “later, further, afterward,” it seems the point being conveyed is that these positions, if extended further, eventuate in non-doing. On the basis of this understanding, I render parampi gantvā as “taken to their conclusion.” Saṇṭhahanti is, more literally, “stop at.”

431. These are respectively the doctrines of the Jains, the theists, and non-causality, a doctrine elsewhere ascribed to Makkhali Gosāla (see AN 1:319, AN 3:137).

432. Mp: “They hold that one experiences feelings exclusively because of kamma created in the past.” In this connection, see SN 36:21, IV 230–31, where the Buddha explains eight causes for illness or affliction, only one of which is the ripening of past kamma. Brahmāli writes: “The point here seems to be that each of these unwholesome ways of acting is related to particular feelings, and that those feelings (or experiences) can only be experienced through those acts. It follows that if your kamma is such that you have to experience the feelings connected with those bad acts, then you will have to perform them.” The same point, with suitable changes, applies to the following two tenets, that of God’s creative activity and non-causality. In each case, agents escape responsibility for their actions.

433. At MN 14.15–19, I 92–93, and MN 101, II 214–28, the Buddha challenges the Nigaṇṭhas with other arguments against their thesis that all feeling is due to past kamma.

434. Mp: “He has so far shown that these sectarian tenets, when taken to their
conclusion, eventuate in non-doing, and are therefore empty and unemancipating, without substance. He now shows that the Dhamma he teaches is substantial and emancipating (sārabhāvañc’eva niyyānikabhāvañca).”

435. For a detailed analysis of the six elements, see MN 140.14–19, III 240–43.

436. Mp explains manopavicāra thus: “The mind’s examination of the eighteen cases, using the ‘feet’ of thought and examination (vitakkavicārapādehi).” The word “feet” (pāda) is used here because vicāra originally meant “traveling around.”

437. Mp: “Why does he begin in this way? For ease of understanding. For the Tathāgata wants to explain the revolving of the twelve conditions, so he shows the round by the term ‘descent of a [future] embryo’ (gabbhassāvakkanti). For when the round has been shown by the descent of a [future] embryo, what follows will be easy to understand. Whose six elements serve as the condition, the mother’s or the father’s? It is neither, but descent of a [future] embryo occurs conditioned by the six elements of the being taking rebirth.” Mp cites MN 38.26, I 265,35–66,6 (see too MN 93.18, II 156,30–57,3).

438. This may be a unique instance where the noble truths of the origin and cessation of suffering are explicated by way of the full twelve factors of dependent origination. At SN 12:43, II 72–73, the origination (samudaya) of suffering is explained by way of the links from consciousness through craving; its passing away (atthaṅgama), by way of the cessation of the links from craving through old age and death. In the Chinese parallel, MĀ 13 (at T I 435a24–436a10), the second and third truths are not explained by way of dependent origination but according to the stock formulations as found in SN 56:11, V 421, and elsewhere.

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Re: AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

Post by mikenz66 » Sat Oct 04, 2014 5:27 am

The Discourse about the Belief Systems (Titthāyatanasuttaṁ Aṅg 3:61)
Translated by Ānandajoti Bhikkhu


http://www.ancient-buddhist-texts.net/E ... ystems.htm

The Three Belief Systems

There are these three belief systems, monks, and though questioned, queried, and discussed by wise men, (because they) have come down from others, they persist in inaction. Which three?

There are some ascetics and brahmins, monks, who are of this argument, this view:
“Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that is due to what was done in the past.”

There are some ascetics and brahmins, monks, who are of this argument, this view:
“Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that is due to the power of God.”

There are some ascetics and brahmins, monks, who are of this argument, this view:
“Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that has no cause or condition.”

Those who Believe in what was Done in the Past

Here, monks, (as for) those ascetics and brahmins who are of this argument, this view:
“Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that is due to what was done in the past,” having approached them, I say: “Is it true that you venerables are of this argument, this view: “Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that is due to what was done in the past?”, and if they agree with me when questioned thus, (saying) “yes”, I say to them:

“Then, venerables, (people) will be killers of living creatures because of what was done in the past,
they will be takers of what is not given because of what was done in the past,
they will be unchaste because of what was done in the past,
they will be speakers of what is false because of what was done in the past,
they will be utterers of divisive words because of what was done in the past,
they will be utterers of harsh words because of what was done in the past,
they will be frivolous talkers because of what was done in the past,
they will be avaracious because of what was done in the past,
they will be malevolent because of what was done in the past,
they will hold to wrong views because of what was done in the past.

But, monks, for he who holds what was done in the past as the essential thing, there is no desire nor effort (thinking): “this should be done, or this should not be done”, but there being no truth or trust in what should be done or what should not be done, he lives without mindfulness, without protection, and that individual cannot reasonably be called an ascetic. This, monks, for the ascetics and brahmins who are of these arguments, these views, is my first reasonable reproach.

Those who Believe in the Power of God

Here, monks, (as for) those ascetics and brahmins who are of this argument, this view:
“Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that is due to the power of God,” having approached them, I say: “Is it true that you venerables are of this argument, this view: “Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that is due to the power of God?”, and if they agree with me when questioned thus, (saying) “yes”, I say to them:

“Then, venerables, (people) will be killers of living creatures due to the power of God,
they will be takers of what is not given due to the power of God,
they will be unchaste due to the power of God,
they will be speakers of what is false due to the power of God,
they will be utterers of divisive words due to the power of God,
they will be utterers of harsh words due to the power of God,
they will be frivolous talkers due to the power of God,
they will be avaracious due to the power of God,
they will be malevolent due to the power of God,
they will hold to wrong views due to the power of God.

But, monks, for he who holds the power of God as the essential thing, there is no desire nor effort (thinking): “this should be done, or this should not be done”, but there being no truth or trust in what should be done or what should not be done, he lives without mindfulness, without protection, and that individual cannot reasonably be called an ascetic. This, monks, for the ascetics and brahmins who are of these arguments, these views, is my second reasonable reproach.

Those who Believe there is No Cause or Condition

Here, monks, (as for) those ascetics and brahmins who are of this argument, this view:
“Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that has no cause or condition,” having approached them, I say: “Is it true that you venerables are of this argument, this view: “Whatever an individual experiences, whether pleasant, painful, or neither-painful-nor-pleasant, all of that has no cause or condition?”, and if they agree with me when questioned thus, (saying) “yes”, I say to them:

“Then, venerables, (people) will be killers of living creatures with no cause or condition,
they will be takers of what is not given with no cause or condition,
they will be unchaste with no cause or condition,
they will be speakers of what is false with no cause or condition,
they will be utterers of divisive words with no cause or condition,
they will be utterers of harsh words with no cause or condition,
they will be frivolous talkers with no cause or condition,
they will be avaracious with no cause or condition,
they will be malevolent with no cause or condition,
they will hold to wrong views with no cause or condition.

But, monks, for he who holds no cause or condition as the essential thing, there is no desire nor effort (thinking): “this should be done, or this should not be done”, but there being no truth or trust in what should be done or what should not be done, he lives without mindfulness, without protection, and that individual cannot reasonably be called an ascetic. This, monks, for the ascetics and brahmins who are of these arguments, these views, is my third reasonable reproach.

These are the three belief systems, monks, and though questioned, queried, and discussed by wise men, (because they) have come down from others, they persist in inaction.

The Buddha's Teaching

But this is the Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. What is the Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins?

“These are the six elements” is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins.

“These are the six spheres of contact” is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins.

“These are the eighteen investigations of mind” is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins.

“These are the four noble truths” is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins.

The Six Elements

“ ‘These are the six elements’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is what was said, but in regard to what was it said?

There are these six elements, monks: the earth element, the water element, the fire element, the wind element, the space element, the consciousness element.

‘These are the six elements’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is that which was said, and this is the reason it was said.

The Six Spheres of Contact

‘These are the six spheres of contact’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is what was said, but in regard to what was it said?

There are these six spheres of contact, monks: the eye sphere of contact, the ear sphere of contact, the nose sphere of contact, the tongue sphere of contact, the body sphere of contact, the mind sphere of contact.

‘These are the six spheres of contact’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is that which was said, and this is the reason it was said.

The Eighteen Investigations of Mind

‘These are the eighteen investigations of mind’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is what was said, but in regard to what was it said?

Having seen a form with the eye he investigates whether it is to be classified as a pleasant form, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a unpleasant form, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a neutral form.
Having heard a sound with the ear he investigates whether it is to be classified as a pleasant sound, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a unpleasant sound, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a neutral sound.
Having smelt a smell with the nose he investigates whether it is to be classified as a pleasant smell, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a unpleasant smell, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a neutral smell.
Having tasted a taste with the tongue he investigates whether it is to be classified as a pleasant taste, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a unpleasant taste, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a neutral taste.
Having touched a tangible with the body he investigates whether it is to be classified as a pleasant tangible, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a unpleasant tangible , he investigates whether it is to be classified as a neutral tangible.
Having cognised a mental object with the mind he investigates whether it is to be classified as a pleasant mental object, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a unpleasant mental object, he investigates whether it is to be classified as a neutral mental object.

‘These are the eighteen investigations of mind’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is that which was said, and this is the reason it was said.

The Four Noble Truths

‘These are the four noble truths’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is what was said, but in regard to what was it said?

Having attachment to the six elements, monks, there is entry into the womb, with the appearance (in the womb) there is mind and body, because of mind and body: the six sense spheres, because of the six sense spheres: contact, because of contact: feeling, now to one who has feeling, monks, I declare ‘this is suffering’, I declare ‘this is the arising of suffering’, I declare ‘this is the cessation of suffering’, I declare ‘this is the path leading to the cessation of suffering’.

Now what, monks, is the noble truth of suffering?

Birth is suffering
also old age is suffering
also death is suffering
also grief, lamentation, pain, sorrow, and despair, is suffering
also not to obtain what one longs for is suffering
in brief, the five constituent groups (of mind and body) that provide fuel for attachment are suffering.

This I say, monks, is the noble truth of suffering.

Now what, monks, is the noble truth of the arising of suffering?

Because of ignorance there are (volitional) processes,
because of (volitional) processes: consciousness,
because of consciousness: mind and body,
because of mind and body: the six sense spheres,
because of the six sense spheres: contact,
because of contact: feeling,
because of feeling: craving,
because of craving: attachment,
because of attachment: continuation,
because of continuation: birth,
because of birth: old age, death,
grief, lamentation, pain, sorrow, and despair (all) arise,
and so there is an origination of this whole mass of suffering.

This I say, monks, is the noble truth of the arising of suffering.

Now what, monks, is the noble truth of the cessation of suffering?

From the complete fading away and cessation of ignorance, there is the cessation of (volitional) processes,
from the cessation of (volitional) processes, the cessation of consciousness,
from the cessation of consciousness, the cessation of mind and body,
from the cessation of mind and body, the cessation of the six sense spheres,
from the cessation of the six sense spheres, the cessation of contact,
from the cessation of contact, the cessation of feeling,
from the cessation of feeling, the cessation of craving,
from the cessation of craving, the cessation of attachment,
from the cessation of attachment, the cessation of continuation,
from the cessation of continuation, the cessation of birth,
from the cessation of birth, old age, death,
grief, lamentation, pain, sorrow, and despair (all) cease,
and so there is a cessation of this whole mass of suffering.

This I say, monks, is the noble truth of the cessation of suffering.

Now what, monks, is the noble truth of the path leading to the cessation of suffering?

It is this noble path with eight factors, as follows:
right view
right thought
right speech
right action
right livelihood
right endeavour
right mindfulness
right concentration.
This I say, monks, is the noble truth of path leading to the cessation of suffering.

‘These are the four noble truths’ is a Teaching, monks, taught by me that is without reproach, undefiled, blameless, and unreviled by wise ascetics and brahmins. This is that which was said, and this is the reason it was said.

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Re: AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

Post by mikenz66 » Sat Oct 04, 2014 5:28 am

AN 3.61 PTS: A i 173 Thai 3.62 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians
translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu


The Buddha explains how three common views about pain and pleasure can, if followed to their logical conclusion, lead to a life of inaction. He then shows how pain and pleasure actually do come about and how they can be transcended.

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

"Monks, there are these three sectarian guilds that — when cross-examined, pressed for reasons, & rebuked by wise people — even though they may explain otherwise, remain stuck in [a doctrine of] inaction. Which three?

"There are brahmans & contemplatives who hold this teaching, hold this view: 'Whatever a person experiences — pleasant, painful, or neither pleasant nor painful — that is all caused by what was done in the past.' There are brahmans & contemplatives who hold this teaching, hold this view: 'Whatever a person experiences — pleasant, painful, or neither pleasant nor painful — that is all caused by a supreme being's act of creation.' There are brahmans & contemplatives who hold this teaching, hold this view: 'Whatever a person experiences — pleasant, painful, or neither pleasant nor painful — that is all without cause & without condition.'

"Having approached the brahmans & contemplatives who hold that... 'Whatever a person experiences... is all caused by what was done in the past,' I said to them: 'Is it true that you hold that... "Whatever a person experiences... is all caused by what was done in the past?"' Thus asked by me, they admitted, 'Yes.' Then I said to them, 'Then in that case, a person is a killer of living beings because of what was done in the past. A person is a thief... unchaste... a liar... a divisive speaker... a harsh speaker... an idle chatterer... greedy... malicious... a holder of wrong views because of what was done in the past.' When one falls back on what was done in the past as being essential, monks, there is no desire, no effort [at the thought], 'This should be done. This shouldn't be done.' When one can't pin down as a truth or reality what should & shouldn't be done, one dwells bewildered & unprotected. One cannot righteously refer to oneself as a contemplative. This was my first righteous refutation of those brahmans & contemplatives who hold to such teachings, such views.

"Having approached the brahmans & contemplatives who hold that... 'Whatever a person experiences... is all caused by a supreme being's act of creation,' I said to them: 'Is it true that you hold that... "Whatever a person experiences... is all caused by a supreme being's act of creation?"' Thus asked by me, they admitted, 'Yes.' Then I said to them, 'Then in that case, a person is a killer of living beings because of a supreme being's act of creation. A person is a thief... unchaste... a liar... a divisive speaker... a harsh speaker... an idle chatterer... greedy... malicious... a holder of wrong views because of a supreme being's act of creation.' When one falls back on creation by a supreme being as being essential, monks, there is no desire, no effort [at the thought], 'This should be done. This shouldn't be done.' When one can't pin down as a truth or reality what should & shouldn't be done, one dwells bewildered & unprotected. One cannot righteously refer to oneself as a contemplative. This was my second righteous refutation of those brahmans & contemplatives who hold to such teachings, such views.

"Having approached the brahmans & contemplatives who hold that... 'Whatever a person experiences... is all without cause, without condition,' I said to them: 'Is it true that you hold that... "Whatever a person experiences... is all without cause, without condition?"' Thus asked by me, they admitted, 'Yes.' Then I said to them, 'Then in that case, a person is a killer of living beings without cause, without condition. A person is a thief... unchaste... a liar... a divisive speaker... a harsh speaker... an idle chatterer... greedy... malicious... a holder of wrong views without cause, without condition.' When one falls back on lack of cause and lack of condition as being essential, monks, there is no desire, no effort [at the thought], 'This should be done. This shouldn't be done.' When one can't pin down as a truth or reality what should & shouldn't be done, one dwells bewildered & unprotected. One cannot righteously refer to oneself as a contemplative. This was my third righteous refutation of those brahmans & contemplatives who hold to such teachings, such views.

"These are the three sectarian guilds that — when cross-examined, pressed for reasons, & rebuked by wise people — even though they may explain otherwise, remain stuck in inaction.

"But this Dhamma taught by me is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives. And which Dhamma taught by me is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives? 'There are these six properties' is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives. 'There are these six media of sensory contact' is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives. 'There are these eighteen explorations for the intellect' is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives. 'There are these four noble truths' is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives.

"'"There are these six properties" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said? These are the six properties: earth-property, liquid-property, fire-property, wind-property, space-property, consciousness-property. '"There are these six properties" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

"'"There are these six media of sensory contact" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said? These are the six media of sensory contact: the eye as a medium of sensory contact, the ear as a medium of sensory contact, the nose as a medium of sensory contact, the tongue as a medium of sensory contact, the body as a medium of sensory contact, the intellect as a medium of sensory contact. '"There are these six media of sensory contact" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

"'"There are these eighteen explorations for the intellect" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said? Seeing a form via the eye, one explores a form that can act as the basis for happiness, one explores a form that can act as the basis for unhappiness, one explores a form that can act as the basis for equanimity. Hearing a sound via the ear... Smelling an aroma via the nose... Tasting a flavor via the tongue... Feeling a tactile sensation via the body... Cognizing an idea via the intellect, one explores an idea that can act as the basis for happiness, one explores an idea that can act as the basis for unhappiness, one explores an idea that can act as the basis for equanimity. '"There are these eighteen explorations for the intellect" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

"'"There are these four noble truths" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said?

"Sustained by/clinging to the six properties, there is an alighting of an embryo. There being an alighting, there is name-&-form. From name-&-form as a requisite condition come the six sense media. From the six sense media as a requisite condition comes contact. From contact as a requisite condition comes feeling. To one experiencing feeling I declare, 'This is stress.' I declare, 'This is the origination of stress.' I declare, 'This is the cessation of stress.' I declare, 'This is the path of practice leading to the cessation of stress.'

"And what is the noble truth of stress? Birth is stressful, aging is stressful, death is stressful; sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair are stressful; association with what is not loved is stressful, separation from what is loved is stressful, not getting what is wanted is stressful. In short, the five clinging-aggregates are stressful. This is called the noble truth of stress.

"And what is the noble truth of the origination of stress?

"From ignorance as a requisite condition come fabrications. From fabrications as a requisite condition comes consciousness. From consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form. From name-&-form as a requisite condition come the six sense media. From the six sense media as a requisite condition comes contact. From contact as a requisite condition comes feeling. From feeling as a requisite condition comes craving. From craving as a requisite condition comes clinging/sustenance. From clinging/sustenance as a requisite condition comes becoming. From becoming as a requisite condition comes birth. From birth as a requisite condition, then old age & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair come into play. Such is the origination of this entire mass of stress & suffering.

"This is called the noble truth of the origination of stress.

"And what is the noble truth of the cessation of stress?

"From the remainderless fading & cessation of that very ignorance comes the cessation of fabrications. From the cessation of fabrications comes the cessation of consciousness. From the cessation of consciousness comes the cessation of name-&-form. From the cessation of name-&-form comes the cessation of the six sense media. From the cessation of the six sense media comes the cessation of contact. From the cessation of contact comes the cessation of feeling. From the cessation of feeling comes the cessation of craving. From the cessation of craving comes the cessation of clinging/sustenance. From the cessation of clinging/sustenance comes the cessation of becoming. From the cessation of becoming comes the cessation of birth. From the cessation of birth, then old age & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair all cease. Such is the cessation of this entire mass of stress & suffering.

"This is called the noble truth of the cessation of stress.

"And what is the noble truth of the path of practice leading to the cessation of stress? Just this noble eightfold path: right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration. This is called the noble truth of the path of practice leading to the cessation of stress.

"'"There are these four noble truths" is a Dhamma taught by me that is unrefuted, undefiled, blameless, not faulted by knowledgeable brahmans & contemplatives': Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said."

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Kim OHara
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Re: AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

Post by Kim OHara » Sat Oct 04, 2014 6:47 am

Thanks, Mike :smile:
One of the things that attracted me to Buddhism is precisely this emphasis on actions having consequences and (therefore) on personal responsibility for ethical conduct. I didn't come across this teaching so explicitly for a long time but it's implicit even in such fundamental teachings as the 4NT and in such approachable teachings as the Dhp.

:namaste:
Kim

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mikenz66
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Re: AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

Post by mikenz66 » Sat Oct 04, 2014 7:28 am

Yes, that's a good point, though Bhikkhu Bodhi has classified this sutta under "Rejection of Views"
See: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 5&p=303089

:anjali:
Mike

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Re: AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

Post by starter » Tue Oct 07, 2014 12:34 am

Greetings!

Thanks to Mike for choosing this great sutta. I was wondering why the Buddha didn't teach ignorance as the origin of suffering and the cessation of ignorance as the cessation of suffering in the stock formulations of the 4NT as found in SN 56:11, V 421, and elsewhere. This sutta seems to be a later teaching, which expanded the earlier ones.

I'd like to point out that Chinese Agama equivalent MA 13 supports Ven. Bodhi's translation "In dependence on the six elements the descent of a future embryo occurs ["以六界合故,便生母胎"]. It's also the most logical one since the context is dependent origination.

Metta to all!

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Re: AN 3.61 Tittha Sutta: Sectarians

Post by mikenz66 » Tue Oct 07, 2014 12:39 am

Hi Starter,

Good points. I've always tended to think of Dependent Origination an expansion of the Four Noble Truths, with more steps, but this sutta makes it much more explicit.

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