The following is an extract from Nanananda's Paticcasamuppada Sermon No. 2.
It is presented here because discerning "arising" and "falling" is an important aspect of vipassana practice.
So much so that it is recognised in the traditional "vipassana-nanas" as "knowledge of rise-and-fall".
But what is "arising", and what is it that is arising...?
(apologies for some of the textual corruption that occurred due to converting the PDF to text in order to allow it to be copied and pasted here)
Do you agree or disagree with the above?It is said that at this point it occurred to the Bodhisatta
‘Paccudavattati kho ida. viñña.a. namarupamha.
‘This consciousness turns back from name-and-form. It
does not go to another.’
This is how he aroused the knowledge of the arising
nature of things. On reaching that point in his radical attention, it
occurred to him:
This consciousness does not go beyond name-and-form.
Dependent on name-and-form is consciousness and dependent on
consciousness is name-and-form. From there he reflected back:
Dependent on name-and-form is six sense-spheres, dependent on
six sense-spheres contact, dependent on contact, feeling,
dependent on feeling, craving and so on ending with the
conclusion: This is the arising of this entire mass of suffering.
This, then, is the arising aspect of suffering. With that
understanding, it is said, that the Bodhisatta Vipassi exclaimed:
At this juncture, the Bodhisatta Vipassi is said to have
made an utterance of joy as we get in the Dhammacakkappavattana
Sutta 6 in the case of our Gotama Buddha.
‘Cakkhu. udapadi ña.a. udapadi, pañña udapadi, vijja
udapadi, aloko udapadi’
‘The eye arose, the knowledge arose, the wisdom arose,
the science arose, the light arose.’
That is as regards the arising aspect.
Along with it, the Bodhisatta Vipassi attended to the
cessation aspect and that too starting from the end.
‘When what does not exist does decay and death not come
to be? With the cessation of what does the cessation of decay and
death come about? And he understood: ‘When there is no birth,
decay and death does not come to be; with the cessation of birth
comes cessation of decay and death.’ I hope you all can
understand the reverse order in the same way. ‘When what does
not exist does birth not come to be? With the cessation of what
does the cessation of birth come about? When there is no
existence, birth does not come to be; with the cessation of
existence comes cessation of birth. Likewise, when grasping
ceases existence or becoming would cease. When craving ceases,
grasping would cease. When feeling ceases, craving would cease.
When contact ceases, feeling would cease. When the six sense-
spheres cease, contact would cease. When name-and-form ceases,
the six sense-spheres would cease. When consciousness ceases,
name-and-form would cease. When name-and-form ceases,
consciousness would cease. With this, again, he reached the point
at which the inter-relation between consciousness and name-and-form
became obvious. Then the Bodhisatta Vipassi is said to have
uttered this highly significant statement.
‘Adhigato kho myaya. vipassana maggo bodhaya.’
‘The way of insight to awakening has been aroused by
This clearly indicates that the Law of Dependent Arising
which in our tradition has been almost relegated to the limbo is
directly relevant to meditation and helpful for enlightenment.
After understanding the cessation aspect, the Bodhisatta
Vipassi exclaimed that the way of insight has been aroused
because it is the decisive aspect in regard to insight. The reason is
that along with the cessation of name-and-form, the six sense-
spheres cease and with that contact, feeling and craving also
cease. Thus the entire mass of suffering comes to cease. What
comes after this is only the following information: The
Bodhisatta Vipassi, with the help of this mode of insight reflected
on the rise and fall of the five aggregates of grasping as follows:
Thus is form, thus its arising, thus its passing away.
Thus is feeling, thus its arising, thus its passing away.
Thus is perception, thus its arising, thus its passing away.
Thus are preparations, thus their arising, thus their passing
Thus is consciousness, thus its arising, thus its passing
Finally, it is said that having contemplated on the rise and
fall of the five aggregates, before long, he attained
We can form some idea of the way of reflection in insight
meditation by this account. What is meant by the contemplation
of the rise and fall (udayabbaya) is the contemplation of the
arising and ceasing nature of phenomena. In contemplating on
arising and ceasing, the question of causes and conditions comes
up as a matter of course. As we mentioned the other day,
according to discourses like Mahapu..ama Sutta,7 the cause and
condition for form is the four great primaries, namely, earth,
water, fire and air. The cause and condition for feeling is contact.
The cause and condition for perception is contact. The cause and
condition for preparations is contact. But the cause and condition
for consciousness is name-and-form. We can infer that the
Bodhisatta Vipassi in his contemplation of rise and fall of the five
aggregates of grasping, reflected lastly on consciousness and
thereby became acquainted with name-and-form. As the radical
attention on name-and-form became sharper and sharper, he
realized the cessation of preparations and attained enlightenment.
From our analysis of this discourse, it should be obvious
how important the Law of Dependent Arising is. Generally, we
talk only about the Four Noble Truths. But from this episode, it is
clear that when one examines the causes and conditions of
consciousness, one would hit upon name-and-form. Let me
elaborate a little on this point. However much we explain, it
seems there are many who cannot budge an inch from the
traditional interpretation. So often, I have pointed out with special
reference to the Buddha’s own definition found in the discourses
that the factors on the ‘name’ side in name-and-form are feeling,
perception, intention, contact and attention. It is with the help of
these five that we recognize the four elements, earth, water, fire
and air in terms of hard and soft, hot or cold, and so forth. That is
why it is called rupasañña
(perception of form).
Comments? Questions? etc.