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A Manual of Abhidhamma
Edited in the original Pali Text with English
Translation and Explanatory Notes
Narada Maha Thera
CHAPTER VIII -
The Compendium of Relations
1. Sankhatadhammanam - To the conditioned nama and rupa described in the previous chapters.
2. Paticcasamuppada - Paticca = because of, on account of; samuppada = arising, origination. Although the literal meaning of the term is 'arising because of' or dependent arising or origination, it is applied to the whole causal formula which consists of twelve interdependent causes and effects, technically called paccaya and paccayuppanna.
S. Z. Aung renders paticcasamuppadanaya by 'The Law of happening by way of cause'.
In this chapter the Law of Dependent Arising is not mixed up with the Patthananaya as in the Visuddhi-Magga.
3. Patthananaya - According to the Ceylon Commentary here the prefix 'pa' means 'various' (nanappakara). Ledi Sayadaw says 'principal' (padhana). Thana (lit. station) signifies 'cause' (paccaya) which is paraphrased by 'upakarakadhamma' - aiding or supportive conditions. These various or principal causes are described in detail in the Patthanapakarana, the seventh book of the Abhidhamma Pitaka. The system expounded in this treatise is called Patthananaya.
The difference between the two understood as follows:
i. Because of A arises B. Because of B arises C. When there is no A there is no B. When there is no B there is no C. In other words 'this being so, that is; this not being so, that is not' (imasmim sati, idam hoti; imasmim asati, idam na hoti). This is the paticcasamuppadanaya.
ii. When we say that A is related to B in the way of 'coexistence', 'interdependence', we get an illustration of patthananaya.
See Journal of the Pali Text Society, 1915-l916, pp. 21-53.
4. Tabbhavabhavibhavakaramatta; bhavakaramatta = the simple happening of a state; tabbhavabhavi = dependent on its antecedent state.
5. Avijja, lit., not-knowingness, i.e., of the four Noble Truths. It is also explained as 'that which causes beings to run in the endless Samsara' (antavirahite samsare satte javapeti). 'Whereby the fruit is produced' is termed 'paccaya', which is the cause. When ignorance is destroyed and turned into knowingness, all causality is shattered as in the case of Buddhas and Arahats.
6. Sankhara - This is a multisignificant term which should be understood according to the context. Here the term signifies immoral (akusala), moral (kusala), and unshakable (ane˝ja) volitions (cetana) which constitute Kamma that produces rebirth. The first embraces all volitions in the 12 types of immoral consciousness; the second, all volitions in the 8 types of Beautiful (kusala) consciousness and the 5 types of kusala rupa-jhana consciousness; the third, all volitions in the 4 types of kusala arupa-jhanas. Where is no proper English equivalent which gives the exact connotation of this Pali term. Sankhara, as one of the five aggregates, implies the 50 mental states excluding feeling and perception.
The volitions of the four supramundane Path consciousnesses (lokuttara-magga-citta) are not regarded as sankhara because they tend to eradicate ignorance. Wisdom (pa˝˝a) is predominant in Supramundane types of consciousness, while volition (cetana) is predominant in the mundane types of consciousness.
Ignorance is predominant in immoral activities, while it is latent in moral activities. Hence both moral and immoral actions are regarded as caused by ignorance.
7. Vi˝˝ana - strictly denotes the 19 types of rebirth-consciousness (patisandhi vi˝˝ana) described in chapter V. All the 32 types of resultant consciousness (vipaka-citta) experienced during lifetime, are also implied by the term.
The foetus in the mother's womb is formed by the combination of this relinking-consciousness with the sperm and ovum cells of the parents. In this consciousness are latent all the past impressions, characteristics and tendencies of that particular individual life-flux.
This relinking-consciousness is regarded as "radiant" (pabhassara) as it is either devoid of immoral roots of lust, hatred and delusion (as in the case of rootless resultants - ahetuka-vipaka), or accompanied by moral roots (as in the case of resultants with roots).
8. Nama-rupa - This compound should be understood as nama alone, rupa alone, and namarupa together. In the case of arupa planes there arises only mind; in the case of mindless (asa˝˝a) planes, only matter; in the case of kama and rupa planes, both mind and matter.
By nama are here meant the three aggregates - feeling (vedana), perception (sa˝˝a) and sankhara - that arise simultaneous with rebirth-consciousness. By rupa are meant the three decads* kaya, bhava-vatthu - that also arise simultaneous with rebirth-consciousness conditioned by past kamma. The second and third factors pertain to the past and present. The third and fourth factors, on the contrary, are contemporaneous.
* The body decad (kayadasaka) is composed of tbe four elements, namely, i. the element of extension (pathavi), ii. the element of cohesion (apo), iii. the element of heat (tejo), iv. the element of motion (vayo); its four derivatives (upudarupa) - namely, v. colour (vanna), vi. odour (gandha), vii. taste (rasa), viii. nutritive essence (oja), with ix. vitality (jivitindriya), and x. body (kaya).
Sex-decad (bhavadasaka) and base-decad (vatthudasaka) also consist of the first nine and sex and seat of consciousness respectively.
From this it is evident that sex is determined by past Kamma at the very conception of the being.
Here kaya means the sensitive part of the body. Sex is not developed at the moment of conception but the potentiality is latent. Neither the heart nor the brain, the supposed seat of consciousness, is developed but the potentiality of the seat is latent.
9. Salayatana - During the embryonic period the six sense-bases gradually evolve from the psycho physical phenomena in which are latent infinite potentialities. The insignificant, infinitesimally small speck now develops into a complex six-sense-machine which now operates almost mechanically without any agent like a soul to act as the operator. The six sense-bases are eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, and mind. The first five refer to the sensitive organs that evolve by degrees. Mind-base has already been explained.
10. Phassa - See Chapters 1 and 2.
11. Vedana - Ibid.
12. Tanha (Craving) is threefold, namely, craving for sensual pleasures (kama-tanha), craving for sensual pleasures associated with the view of eternalism (bhava-tanha) i.e., enjoying, pleasures thinking that they are imperishable, and craving for sensual pleasures associated with the view of nihilism (vibhava-tanha) i.e., enjoying pleasures thinking that everything perishes after death. The last is the materialistic point of view.
Bhava-tanhaand vibhava-tanha are also interpreted as attachment to rupa and arupa Planes respectively. Usually these two terms are rendered by craving for existence and non-existence.
There are six kinds of craving corresponding to the six sense-objects such as form, sound, and so on. They become 12 when they are treated as internal and external. They are reckoned as 36 when past, present and future are taken into consideration. When multiplied by the foregoing three kinds of craving they amount to 108.
13. Upadana, derived from upa + a + Í da, to give, is intense craving or firm grasping. Tanha is like groping in the dark to steal an object. Upadana corresponds to the actual stealing. Grasping results with attachment and error. It gives rise to the false notions of 'I' and 'mine'.
14. Bhava, lit., becoming, is explained as both moral and immoral action which constitute Kamma (kamma-bhava) - active process of becoming - and the different planes of existence (upapattibhava) - passive process of becoming. The only difference between sankhara and kammabhava is that the former pertains to the past and the latter to the present. It is only the (kamma) bhava that conditions the future birth.
15. Jati, strictly speaking, is the arising of the aggregates (khandhanam patubhavo). Ignorance is shown as the past cause that conditions the present, and Craving as the present cause that conditions the future.
17. Asavas or Defilements, latent in all worldlings, are cited as the cause of ignorance.
The Law of Casual Relations
18. Hetu-paccaya - Here paccaya presents some difficulty. It is defined as that by means of which an effect comes to be. In other words it is the cause. Furthermore, it is explained as a 'serviceable or supportive factor' (upakarako dhammo). Hetu is defined as 'that by which an effect is established'. It is used in the sense of 'root' (mulatthena). Like the roots of a tree are hetu; like water and manure that aid its growth are paccaya. In the Abhidhamma these two related terms are used in two different senses. In the Suttas, however, they are invariably employed as Synonymous terms, without any distinction, as, for example ko hetu, ko paccayo - what is the reason? what is the cause?
In the Patthana 24 suchpaccayas are enumerated, and hetu is one of them. Hetu-paccaya is explained as 'hetu itself is a paccaya' or 'as hetu it becomes a paccaya'. It is interpreted as a supportive or serviceable factor in the sense of root (mulatthena upakarako dhammo). The causal relation by way of 'root' may be suggested as the closest rendering. (See Compendium, p. 279; Journal of the Pali Text Society, 1915-1916, pp. 29-53.)
'Roots are purely mental. They are the six moral and immoral roots. See Chapter I.
19. Arammana - or alambana. The former is derived from a + Í ram, to delight in; the latter from a + Í lamb, to hang upon. Things which the subject delights in or hangs upon are 'objects'. There are six classes of objects. A form, for instance, acts as a causal relation to visual-consciousness by way of an 'object'. It should be stated that there is nothing mundane or supramundane that does not become an object for mind.
20. Adhipati - Lit., mastery or lordship over one's own. 0ne of the four dominant factors - namely, wish, thought, effort and reasoning - may, at one time, causally relate itself to coexistent mental states and material phenomena by way of predominance. "Whenever such phenomena as consciousness and mental states arise by giving predominance to one of these four factors, then this phenomenon is to the other phenomenon a condition by way of predominance". (Patthana)
21. Anantara and Samanantara - In meaning there is no difference between the two terms. They differ only in etymology. According to Buddhist philosophy one thought-moment perishes, immediately giving birth to another. The succeeding thought-moment inherits all the potentialities of its immediate predecessor. The perishing preceding states causally relate themselves to immediately following states by way of contiguity and immediacy.
22. Sahajata - The causal relation by way of conascence, as, for instance, the four mental aggregates, the different mental states that simultaneously arise in a particular type of consciousness, the four Great Essentials that arise together, the appearance of the three 'decads' at the moment of conception, etc. In the paticca-samuppada it may be mentioned that both contact and feeling which appear as causes and effect are conascent.
A mental state may be conascent with a mental state, a mental with a physical, a physical with a physical, and a physical with a mental.
23. A˝˝ama˝˝a - Just as the legs of a tripod are reciprocally helpful, even so mental or physical state or states may be causally related by way of reciprocity (or mutuality). Causal relations of conascence and reciprocity should be differentiated. They are not identical. For instance, mind-born material phenomena are not reciprocally related to the coexisting mind, nor are the material derivatives to the coexisting Great Essentials. As a rule, mind and matter are reciprocally related.
24. Nissaya and Upanissaya - derived from upa + ni + Í si, to lie. Upa is an intensive prefix. As trees depend on the ground for their support, and as pictures depend on a canvas on which they are painted, so is the causal relation of dependence. Upanissaya is defined as a stronger form of Nissaya. It is compared to the rains on which depend the growth of trees. S. Z. Aung renders upanissaya by 'sufficing condition'. For instance, one of the five heinous crimes such as matricide, parricide and so on, will serve as an upanissaya to effect a birth in a woeful state. Good environments, early education, etc., will serve as a causal relation by way of 'dependence' (nissaya) for the acquisition of health, wealth and knowledge in later life. Just as good actions become upanissaya for future good deeds, even so they may become upanissaya for evil too as, for instance, spiritual pride. See Ledi Sayadaw's learned article on this subject in P.T.S. Journal, 1916, pp. 49-53.
25. Purejata - lit., born before or that which pre-exists. The six physical bases and six sensual objects are regarded as pre-existent. The pre-existent things are regarded as causal relations only when they continue to exist in the present and not by mere antecedence. Priority is not a good rendering.
26. Pacchajata - Of the 89 types of consciousness, 85 types, excluding the four arupa resultants, and the 52 mental states, are causally related to the antecedent physical body by way of post-occurrence.
27. Asevana - Repeated practice, as a rule, leads to proficiency. This applies to both good and evil things. By repetition one acquires a certain amount of skill in any particular thing. Asevana denotes this repeated practice. In javana process the second thought moment is causally related to the first, the third to the second, the fourth to the third, by way of recurrence. This is the reason why the fourth javana thought-moment is considered very powerful.
28. Kamma means the volition that plays the most important part in moral and immoral thoughts, words, and deeds. This volition, technically known as Kamma, is causally related to the Kamma-born material phenomena, etc. As a seed to a tree so is Kamma causally related to its inevitable results.
29. Vipaka - Like a cool breeze that pacifies a person seated under the cool shade of a tree, even so mental states of resultant types of consciousness are causally related to coexistent mental states and material phenomena by way of 'effect' due to their effortless peaceful nature.
30. Ahara - Just as material food sustains the physical body, even so mental foods sustain mental states. Edible food is causally related to the body by way of nutriment or food; so are mental contacts or impressions (phassa) to feelings; volitions or moral and immoral actions (mano-sa˝etana) to rebirth-consciousness (patisandhi vi˝˝ana); and rebirth-consciousness (vi˝˝ana) to mind and matter.
31. Indriya - The controlling factors enumerated in Chapter VII become causally related to the coexistent mental states and material phenomena because they exercise control in their respective spheres. For instance, confidence controls its co-adjuncts in religious convictions; psychic and physical life, in vivifying mind and matter; mindfulness, in contemplative exercise; feelings, in grief and happiness, etc.
32. Jhana - The seven jhana factors of (1) initial application, (2) sustained application, (3) rapture, (4) happiness, (5) equanimity, (6) displeasure and (7) one-pointedness are causally related to one another and other concomitants by way of close perception and contemplation. For instance, the initial application (vitakka) is causally related to its concomitants in directing them towards the desired object. See Chapter 1.
1, 2, 3, 4, 7 are found in two classes of consciousness rooted in attachment; 1, 2, 6, 7, in hateful consciousness; 1, 2, 5, 7, in deluded consciousness.
33. Magga - means a way or road. One way leads to woeful states; the other, to states of bliss. The vehicles that convey travelers to the former are the evil 'Path Constituents' of wrong views, wrong application, wrong effort, and wrong one-pointedness. The vehicles that ply on the latter way are right understanding, right aspirations, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right one-pointedness. These path factors are causally related to both mind and body, leading downwards in the case of bad ones, and leading away from existence (niyyana) in the case of good ones.
34. Sampayutta - Though possessing distinct characteristics from an ultimate standpoint yet, as certain mental states arise together, perish together, have one identical object and one identical base, they are causally related to one another by way of 'association'.
35. Vippayutta is the opposite of the foregoing. Sweet and bitter tastes may be helpful to each other in being dissimilar. For instance, mind that depends on the heart-basis is causally related to it by way of dissociation because, both mind and heart-basis are not mutually bound, as water on a lotus leaf.
36. Atthi is the causal relation of states that exist in the present to similar states like the causal relation of coexistence. The visibility of objects, for instance, is due to the presence of light.
37. Natthi - As with the disappearance of light, darkness spreads, so with the disappearance of the predecessor, the successor appears. Such is the causal relation by way of absence. For instance, the visual consciousness (dassana) is causally related to the immediately following receiving consciousness (sampaticchana) by way of absence.
38. Vigata and Avigata are similar to Natthi and Atthi respectively.
39. Pa˝˝atti - There are two kinds of pa˝˝atti or concepts - namely, attha-pa˝˝atti and nama-pa˝˝atti. The former is made known, that is, the object conveyed by the concept. The latter is that which makes known, that is, the name given to the object.
Land, mountain, etc. are called 'santhana-pa˝˝atti', formal concepts, since they correspond to the form of things.
Chariot, village, etc., are called 'samuha-pa˝˝atti', collective concepts, since they correspond to a collection or group of things.
East, west, etc., are called 'disa-pa˝˝atti', local concepts, since they correspond to locality.
Morning, noon, etc., are called 'kala-pa˝˝atti', time concepts, since they correspond to time.
Well, cave, etc., are called 'akasa-pa˝˝atti', space-concepts, since they correspond to open space.
Visualized image, conceptualized image, etc. are called 'nimitta-pa˝˝atti', since they correspond to mental signs gained by mental development.
40. Six kinds of Pa˝˝atti -
1. Matter, feeling, etc., exist in an ultimate sense.
2. Land, mountain, etc., are terms given to things that do not exist in an ultimate sense.
3. 'Possessor of sixfold supernormal vision.'
Here the former does not exist in an ultimate sense, but the latter does.
4. Woman's voice. Here the voice exists in an ultimate sense, but not the woman.
5. Eye-consciousness. Here the sensitive eye exists in an ultimate sense, and so does the consciousness dependent on it.
6. King's son. Here neither the son nor the king exists in an ultimate sense.
Source: Tipitaka -der Pali Kanon des Theravada-Buddhismus, http://www.palikanon.com
(See also: Vietnamese Translation by Pham Kim Khanh)