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Buddhist Philosophy of Relations, Paṭṭhānuddesa Dīpanī

Buddhist Philosophy of Relations, Paṭṭhānuddesa Dīpanī

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An Abhidhamma exploration of causal relations by Ledi Sayadaw. Wheel Publication 331.
An Abhidhamma exploration of causal relations by Ledi Sayadaw. Wheel Publication 331.

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Published by: Buddhist Publication Society on Sep 16, 2012
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10/28/2013

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Every posterior consciousness that springs into being causally relates to the still existing group
of prior corporeal qualities born of the four origins22

(kamma, citta, utu, āhāra), by way of post-

21

Beings whose coming into existence takes place in any other mode than the ordinary one of birth
from parents; what occidentals might call 'supernatural beings' though not all of them are to be
understood as superior to man in any vital respect. Many are inferior to man, in power and faculty, as
well as in the opportunities open to them of winning Nibbāna. (Translator)

22

Here, the origins of material qualities are meant. The four are kamma, mind, temperature and

nutriment.

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existence, in helping them to develop and thrive (vuddhi-virūḷhiya). For example, the rainwater
that falls every subsequent year, renders service by way of post-existence to such vegetation as
has grown up in previous years, in promoting its growth and development.

Here, by “every posterior consciousness” is meant all classes of consciousness beginning from
the first life-continuum to the final dying-thought. And, by “prior corporeal qualities” is meant
all corporeal qualities born of four origins starting from the group of material qualities born of
kamma, which co-exist with the rebirth-conception.

The fifteen states of the life-continuum, starting serially from the first life-continuum which
has arisen after the rebirth-conception, causally relate by way of post-existence to the group of
material qualities born of kamma, which co-exist with the rebirth-conception. As to the rebirth-
conception, it cannot be a causal relation by way of post-existence, for it co-exists with the group
of corporeal qualities born of kamma. Similarly, the sixteenth life continuum cannot become a
causal relation by way of post-existence, for it comes into existence only when that group of
material qualities reaches the stage of dissolution. Therefore, these are the fifteen states of the
life-continuum which causally relate as above.

At the static moment of the rebirth-conception, there spring up two groups of material
qualities, born of kamma and born of temperature,23

and the same at the arrested moment. But
at the nascent moment of the first life-continuum, three groups spring up: that born of kamma,
that born of temperature, and that born of mind. When oja (the nutritive essence) of the food
eaten spreads all through the body, the corporeal nutritive essence absorbs the stimulant and
produces a group of material qualities. From that time onward, the groups produced by the four
origins spring up incessantly, like the flame of a burning lamp. Leaving out the nascent
moment, so long as these groups stand at their static stage, every one of the posterior fifteen
classes of consciousness renders them help by way of post-existence.

Vuddhi-virūḷhiya means “for the gradual development and progress of the series of corporeal
qualities born of the four origins.” Therefore, if they, the four kinds of corporeal groups, are
repeatedly related by (lit., do repeatedly obtain) the causal relation of post-existence, then they
leave behind them, when their physical life-term has expired, a powerful energy—an energy
adequate to produce the development, energy—an energy adequate to produce the
development, progress and prosperity of the subsequent series of groups.

End of the Pacchājāta-relation.

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