SN V 56.11 Setting Rolling the Dhamma Wheel

SN V 56.11 Setting Rolling the Dhamma Wheel

 

Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta #

 

 

Once,

The Awakened One was living at Vārāṇasi

In the deer sanctuary.

 

There, the Awakened One told the group of five monks:

 

 

[Two Extremes] #

 

“Monks, 

these two [dead] ends 

should not be practiced by one gone forth. [1]

 

What two?

 

(1) Immoderate indulgence in sensory gratification, [2]

which is base,

vulgar,

materialistic,

not honorable,

and not conducive to happiness. [3]

 

(2) And indulging into self-inflicted penances,

which are painful,

not honorable,

and not conducive to happiness. [4]

 

[The Midway] #

 

Monks, by avoiding both these extremes,

the Truth-finder has fully Awakened to the middle path,

which imparts vision 

and understanding,

which leads to calm,

and goes beyond knowledge,

to complete awakening 

and Nibbāna.[5]

 

What is this middle path?

 

[Eight-Spoked] #

 

It is this eight-spoked path of the awakened, namely

 

Wise understanding,

Wise thoughts,

Wise speech,

Wise behavior,

Wise living,

Wise practice,

Wise awareness,

Wise meditation.

 

This is the middle path, 

that the Truth-finder has fully Awakened to,

which imparts vision 

and understanding,

which leads to calm,

and goes beyond knowledge,

to complete awakening 

and Nibbāna. 

 

[Four Understandings of the Ariyas] #

 

[Difficulty] #

 

Now monks, 

Understanding [what is] difficult 

is conducive to Awakening, that is

 

Taking birth is difficult,

Aging is difficult,

Diseases are difficult,

Death is difficult,

Coming upon undesired things is difficult,

Being separated from desired things is difficult,

Not getting what one wants is difficult,

 

In brief, 

the five fabrics of the ego[6] are indeed difficult.

 

[The Cause of Difficulty] #

 

Then monks, 

Understanding the cause of difficulty 

is conducive to awakening, that is 

 

Discontent or thirst, 

which are the very fuel for taking action,

propelled by seeking happiness in wanting,

seeking happiness and attachment in trifling material things, that is—[7]

 

Wishing for sensory stimulation,

Wishing for things to happen,

Wishing for things not to happen.[8]

 

[The Release from Difficulty] #

 

Then monks, 

Understanding the release from difficulty[9]

is conducive to awakening, that is

 

The complete appeasement and release 

from that very discontent;

giving it up,

letting it go,

releasing it, 

and unlatching from it.[10]

 

[The Practice Leading to Release] #

 

Then monks, 

Understanding the practice which leads to the release from difficulty[11] is conducive to awakening, that is

 

This eight-spoked path of the awakened, 

which is

 

Wise Understanding

Wise Thoughts

Wise Speech

Wise Behavior

Wise Living

Wise Practice

Wise Awareness

Wise Meditation.

 

[Three Modes] #

 

[Difficulty] #

 

[1. Discernment]

 

[When I realized:] 

‘This is difficulty.’ [12]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness[13] arose,

and clarity[14] arose.[15]

 

[2. Continually]

 

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth is to be continually understood.’[16]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,                                  

and clarity arose.

 

[3. Attainment]

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth is continually understood.’[17]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

 

[The Cause] #

 

[1. Discernment]

[When I realized:] 

‘This is the cause of difficulty.’[18]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

[2. To be Given up]

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth is to be given up.’[19]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

[3. Given up]

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth is given up.’

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

[The Release] #

 

[1. Discernment]

[When I realized:] 

‘This is the Release from difficulty.’

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

[2. To be Experienced]

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth is to be experienced’[20]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

[3. Experienced]

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth is experienced.’[21]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

 

[The Practice] #

 

[1. Discernment]

 

[When I realized:] 

‘This is the practice leading to release’

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

[2. To be Developed]

 

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth should be developed.’[22]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

[3. Developed]

[When I realized:] 

‘This truth is developed’[23]

 

I began to understand a Dhamma unheard before;

vision arose,

understanding arose,

discernment arose,

awareness arose,

clarity arose.

 

 

[Claim of Awakening] #

 

So long as my knowledge and direct experience 

of these four awakened understandings

as they truly are

each turning threefold 

in these twelve modes

had not become clear,[24]

 

I did not declare having fully awakened 

with perfect unrivaled knowledge and understanding;

in this world of Devas 

and Māras and Brāhmas

this generation of samaṇas and Brāhmaṇas

With its kings and people,[25]

 

But when my knowledge and direct experience 

of these four awakened understandings

as they truly are

each turning threefold 

in these twelve modes

finally became very clear and perfected,

 

I declared having fully awakened 

with perfect unrivaled knowledge and understanding.

In this world of Devas 

and Māras and Brāhmas

this generation of samaṇas and Brāhmaṇas

With its kings and people.

 

Then direct knowledge and experience came:

 

‘Unshakeable is my liberation,

This is the final birth,

There is no more rebirth from now.’[26]

 

This is what the Awakened One said.

 

Glad at heart,

the group of five monks rejoiced in his words.

 

 

[Kondañña’s Dhamma Vision] #

 

And while this speech was given,

The flawless, stainless,

Vision of the Dhamma arose[27]

in the venerable Koṇḍañña.

 

[He directly saw and understood:]

 

‘Whatever is of a nature to become,

All of it is also of a nature to cease.[28]

 

[The Earth Devas]

 

Once the Wheel of Dhamma 

was set turning by the Buddha,

The earth devas exclaimed:

 

‘At Vārāṇasi, in the deer sanctuary at Isipatana,

The Awakened One has set rolling the wheel of Dhamma

Which cannot be turned back 

by any samaṇa or Brāhmaṇa,

Any Deva or Māra or Brahma 

or anyone in this world.’

 

[The Devas of the Four Great Kings]

 

The Earth Devas having heard the celestial claim,

The Devas of the Four Great Kings exclaimed:

 

‘At Vārāṇasi, in the deer sanctuary at Isipatana

The Awakened One has set rolling the wheel of Dhamma

Which cannot be turned back 

by any samaṇa or Brāhmaṇa,

Any Deva or Māra or Brahma 

or anyone in this world.’

 

 

The Devas of the Four Great Kings having heard the celestial claim:

The Thirty Three Devas exclaimed:

 

The Yāmā Devas…

 

The Tusitā Devas…

 

The Nimmānaratī Deva…

 

The Paranimmita-vasavattī Devas…

 

[The Devas in Brahmic Planes]

 

The Brahmic body of Devas exclaimed:

 

‘At Vārāṇasi, in the deer sanctuary at Isipatana

The Awakened One has set rolling the wheel of Dhamma

Which cannot be turned back 

by any samaṇa or Brāhmaṇa,

Any Deva or Māra or Brahma 

or anyone in this world.’

 

And at that moment, 

in that instant, 

without delay,

The news resounded all the way to the Brahmic planes.

 

And this ten-thousand-worlds system

shook, 

trembled 

and quaked,

 

And a measureless, 

illustrious radiance manifested in the world,

Surpassing even the [radiance] of the brightest Devas.[29]

 

And the Awakened One spoke these inspired verses:

 

“Koṇḍañña sees, Koṇḍañña sees.”[30]

 

And from then, 

the Venerable Koṇḍañña came to be known as:

 

‘Koṇḍañña, The One Who Sees.’[31]

 

 


[1] “Dveme, bhikkhave, antā pabbajitena na sevitabbā.

[2] Sukhallikānuyoga [same in BSk.] luxurious living. Allika (?) [either from alla = allikaṁ nt. in meaning defilement, getting soiled by (—°), or from allīyati = alliyakaṁ, a der. fr. ger. alliya clinging to, sticking to. The whole word is doubtful.] only in cpd. (kāma —) sukhɔ allikɔânuyoga given to the attachment to sensual joys.

[3] Yo cāyaṃ kāmesu kāmasukhallikānuyogo hīno gammo pothujjaniko anariyo anatthasaṃhito,

[4] attakilamathānuyogo dukkho anariyo anatthasaṃhito.

[5] Ete kho, bhikkhave, ubho ante anupagamma majjhimā paṭipadā tathāgatena abhisambuddhā cakkhukaraṇī ñāṇakaraṇī upasamāya abhiññāya sambodhāya nibbānāya saṃvattati.

[6] Selfish clinging

[7] Yāyaṃ taṇhā ponobbhavikā nandirāgasahagatā tatratatr-ābhinandinī

[8] kāmataṇhā, bhavataṇhā, vibhavataṇhā.

[9] i.e. Happiness

[10] taṇhāya asesavirāganirodho cāgo paṭinissaggo mutti anālayo.

[11] i.e. The cause for happiness.

[12] In more tangible, practical terms: ‘This is tension.‘

[13] Vindati [vid, both in meaning “to know” & “to find”; cp. Gr. I saw, I know=Sk. veda “Veda,””idol”; Vedic vindati to find, vetti to know, vidyā knowledge; Goth. witan to observe & know= Ger. wissen; = E. wise, etc., for which see Walde.

[14] Āloka [ā + lok, Sk. āloka] seeing, sight (obj. & subj.) — 1. sight, view, look (āloke nikkhitta laid before one’s eye). anāloka without sight, blind (andha +). — 2. light (tamo vigato ā. uppanno) = (vihato); (four lights,   canda°, suriya°, agg°, paññ°, of the moon, sun, fire & wisdom); (opp. andhakāra);(dīp°). — 3. (clear) sight, power of observation, intuition, in combn. with vijjā knowledge (obhāsaṭṭhena). — 4. splendour

[15] ‘Idaṃ dukkhaṃ ariyasaccan’ti me, bhikkhave, pubbe ananussutesu dhammesu cakkhuṃ udapādi, ñāṇaṃ udapādi, paññā udapādi, vijjā udapādi, āloko udapādi.

[16] ‘Taṃ kho panidaṃ dukkhaṃ ariyasaccaṃ pariññeyyan’ti me

[17] ‘Taṃ kho panidaṃ dukkhaṃ ariyasaccaṃ pariññātan’ti me

[18] Mental impurities, hindrances.

[19] pahātabban’ti

[20] sacchikātabban’ti

[21] sacchikatan’ti

[22] bhāvetabban’ti

[23] bhāvitan’ti

[24] Yāvakīvañca me, bhikkhave, imesu catūsu ariyasaccesu evaṃ tiparivaṭṭaṃ dvādasākāraṃ yathābhūtaṃ ñāṇadassanaṃ na suvisuddhaṃ ahosi,

[25] neva tāvāhaṃ, bhikkhave, sadevake loke samārake sabrahmake sassamaṇabrāhmaṇiyā pajāya sadevamanussāya ‘anuttaraṃ sammāsambodhiṃ abhisambuddho’ti paccaññāsiṃ.

[26] Ñāṇañca pana me dassanaṃ udapādi: ‘akuppā me vimutti, ayamantimā jāti, natthi dāni punabbhavo’”ti.

[27] Imasmiñca pana veyyākaraṇasmiṃ bhaññamāne āyasmato koṇḍaññassa virajaṃ vītamalaṃ dhammacakkhuṃ udapādi:

[28] “yaṃ kiñci samudayadhammaṃ sabbaṃ taṃ nirodhadhamman”ti.

[29] Ayañca dasasahassilokadhātu saṅkampi sampakampi sampavedhi, appamāṇo ca uḷāro obhāso loke pāturahosi atikkamma devānaṃ devānubhāvanti.

[30] “aññāsi vata bho, koṇḍañño, aññāsi vata bho, koṇḍañño”ti.

[31] “aññāsikoṇḍañño”