The meaning of paccaya in DO

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby Spiny Norman » Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:04 am

I've been looking at the meaning of "paccaya" in dependent origination. It's usually translated as "condition".
I've seen paccaya used as a verb, in the sense of "shapes" or "influences", but I believe this to be incorrect. As I see it paccaya is a noun, not a verb. Paccaya ( "condition" ) is something on which something else, the so-called 'conditioned thing', is dependent, and without which the latter cannot be.

The interpretation of paccaya as a noun, not a verb, is IMO supported by the general formula for dependent arising which appears in MN38 and elsewhere:
"When this exists, that comes to be; with the arising of this, that arises. When this does not exist, that does not come to be; with the cessation of this, that ceases."

Your thoughts?

P
I'm a lumberjack, and I'm OK....
User avatar
Spiny Norman
 
Posts: 2760
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Spam, wonderful spam

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jul 16, 2010 11:12 am

Greetings porpoise,

I don't know about all that noun and verb business (I forgot all that about 15 years ago :tongue: ) but I agree that one supports the next, and that when the support goes, the later consequence goes too... as you said, ""When this exists, that comes to be; with the arising of this, that arises. When this does not exist, that does not come to be; with the cessation of this, that ceases.". I think that underlying structure is critical.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14678
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby Sobeh » Fri Jul 16, 2010 3:39 pm

"something on which something else, the so-called 'conditioned thing', is dependent, and without which the latter cannot be"

In this line, is 'conditioned thing' = sankhara?
User avatar
Sobeh
 
Posts: 329
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 3:35 am
Location: Salt Lake City, UT, US

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby OcTavO » Fri Jul 16, 2010 8:19 pm

I don't know about the linguistics of paccaya translating as noun vs. a verb, but I don't see that it would significantly alter the message of the doctrine of paticcasamuppāda either way. Whether it's "with this as condition, that arises..." or "this conditions that...", it sounds like the same meaning.

When we say that Bhava conditions Jati, Bhava is both the condition and, by de facto, it is conditioning, right?

:thinking:
User avatar
OcTavO
 
Posts: 101
Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 3:27 am

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby beeblebrox » Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:55 pm

OcTavO wrote:I don't know about the linguistics of paccaya translating as noun vs. a verb, but I don't see that it would significantly alter the message of the doctrine of paticcasamuppāda either way. Whether it's "with this as condition, that arises..." or "this conditions that...", it sounds like the same meaning.


It seems different to me. If it was a verb, then:

Ignorance "conditions" the volitional formations, the volitional formations "conditions" the consciousness, the consciousness "conditions" the namarupa, etc., and then the birth "conditions" the aging-and-death.

These seem to imply that depending on how it's "conditioned" you can get a good result. I.e., if your ignorance wasn't that bad, then you'll get good volitional formations, which makes good consciousness, giving you good namarupa, good contacts, not bad craving, good becoming, making a good birth, and then you'll age and die gracefully.

Does that seem right? Is it still in line with what the Buddha taught? I'm not sure, because I've never really thought about it. I always assumed it was a noun (because of the translations I've read).
User avatar
beeblebrox
 
Posts: 939
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 10:41 pm

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby kc2dpt » Sat Jul 17, 2010 2:24 am

"Conditions" doesn't work for me. It sounds like "influences" and that's not what is meant. What is meant is "necessary condition". Feeling is a necessary condition for craving. If there was no feeling then there could not be craving.

I don't see how one could produce the same grammatical result with a verb.
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
User avatar
kc2dpt
 
Posts: 956
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:48 pm

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:27 am

Asankhata wrote:
Peter wrote:I don't see how one could produce the same grammatical result with a verb.

Ajahn Sumedho uses the verb. It makes alot of sense. It is practical.
That sounds more like something Buddhadasa would say. Peter is correct. Ajahn Sumedho is not.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
User avatar
tiltbillings
 
Posts: 19619
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby kc2dpt » Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:55 am

Asankhata wrote:
Peter wrote:I don't see how one could produce the same grammatical result with a verb.

Ignorance conditions the fabricators...
It makes perfect sense and is grammatically logical.

Yes, that phrase is grammatically fine. However, what I was getting at is there is no grammatically viable way to use it as a verb in a manner which reinforces the teaching that it is a necessary condition, or as Thanissaro Bhikkhu renders it: requisite condition.

"From ignorance as a requisite condition come fabrications.
From the remainderless fading & cessation of that very ignorance comes the cessation of fabrications."

Saying "ignorance conditions fabrications" does not imply that "with the cessation of ignorance comes the cessation of fabrications". Without this implication all of the teaching on liberation falls apart.

What conditions how I smell?
Whether I put on perfume conditions how I smell.
But it would be incorrect to infer that without perfume I do not smell.

What is a condition for detecting odor?
A nose is a condition for detecting odor.
Without a nose there cannot be the detection of odor.
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
User avatar
kc2dpt
 
Posts: 956
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:48 pm

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby Anicca » Sat Jul 17, 2010 6:41 am

Noun - verb - i dunno - hope this isn't out of bounds

Here are a lot of words from palicanon.com

paccaya
'condition', is something on which something else, the so-called 'conditioned thing', is dependent, and without which the latter cannot be. Manifold are the ways in which one thing, or one occurrence, may be the condition for some other thing, or occurrence. In the Patthāna, the last book of the Abhidhamma Pitaka (comprising 6 large vols. in the Siamese edition), these 24 modes of conditionality are enumerated and explained, and then applied to all conceivable mental and physical phenomena and occurrences, and thus their conditioned nature is demonstrated.

The first two volumes of the Patthāna have been translated into English by the Venerable U Nārada (Mūlapatthāna Sayadaw) of Burma, under the title Conditional Relations (Published by the Pāli Text Society, London 1969, 1981). For a synopsis of this work, see Guide VII.

The 24 modes of conditionality are:

1. Root condition: hetu paccaya
2. Object: ārammana
3. Predominance: adhipati
4. Priority: anantara
5. Contiguity: samanantara
6. Co-nascence: sahajāta
7. Mutuality: aññamañña
8. Support: nissaya
9. Decisive Support: upanissaya
10. Pre-nascene: purejāta
11. Post-nascene: pacchājāta
12. Repitition: āsevana
13. Karma: kamma
14. Karma-result: vipāka
15. Nutriment: āhāra
16. Faculty: indriya
17. Jhāna: jhāna
18. Path: magga
19. Associaton: sampayutta
20. Dissociation: vippayutta
21. Presence: atthi
22. Absence: natthi
23. Disappearance: vigata
24. Non-disappearance: avigata
(1) Root-condition (hetu-paccaya) is that condition that resembles the root of a tree. Just as a tree rests on its root, and remains alive only as long as its root is not destroyed, similarly all karmically wholesome and unwholesome mental states are entirely dependent on the simultaneity and presence of their respective roots, i.e., of greed (lobha), hate (dosa), delusion (moha), or greedlessness (alobha), hatelessness (adosa), undeludedness (amoha). For the definition of these 6 roots, s. mūla.

"The roots are a condition by way of root for the (mental) phenomena associated with a root, and for the corporeal phenomena produced thereby (e.g. for bodily expression)" (Patth).

(2) Object-condition (ārammana-paccaya) is called something which, as object, forms the condition for consciousness and mental phenomena. Thus, the physical object of sight consisting in colour and light ('light-wave'), is the necessary condition and the sine qua non for the arising of eye-consciousness (cakkhu-viññāna), etc.; sound ('sound wave') for ear-consciousness (sotā-viññāna), etc.; further, any object arising in the mind is the condition for mind-consciousness (mano-viññāna). The mind-object may be anything whatever, corporeal or mental, past, present or future, real or imaginary.

(3) Predominance-condition (adhipati-paccaya) is the term for 4 things, on the preponderance and predominance of which are dependent the mental phenomena associated with them, namely: concentrated intention (chanda), energy (viriya), consciousness (citta) and investigation (vīmamsā). In one and the same state of consciousness, however, only one of these 4 phenomena can be predominant at a time. "Whenever such phenomena as consciousness and mental concomitants are arising by giving preponderance to one of these 4 things, then this phenomenon is for the other phenomena a condition by way of predominance" (Patth.). Cf. iddhi-pāda.

(4-5) Proximity and contiguity (or immediacy)-condition (anantara and samanantara-paccaya) - both being identical - refer to any state of consciousness and mental phenomena associated with them, which are the conditions for the immediately following stage in the process of consciousness. For example, in the visual process, eye-consciousness is for the immediately following mind element - performing the function of receiving the visible object - a condition by way of contiguity; and so is this mind-element for the next following mind-consciousness element, performing the function of investigating the object, etc. Cf. viññāna-kicca.

(6) Co-nascence condition (sahajāta-paccaya), i.e. condition by way of simultaneous arising, is a phenomenon that for another one forms, a condition in such a way that, simultaneously with its arising, also the other thing must arise. Thus, for instance, in one and the same moment each of the 4 mental groups (feeling, perception, mental formations and consciousness) is for the 3 other groups a condition by way of co-nascence or co-arising; or again each of the 4 physical elements (solid, liquid, heat, motion) is such a condition for the other 3 elements. Only at the moment of conception in the mother's womb does corporeality (physical base of mind) serve for the 4 mental groups as a condition by way of co nascence.

(7) Condition by way of mutuality (aññāmañña-paccaya). All the just mentioned associated and co-nascent mental phenomena, as well as the 4 physical elements, are, of course, at the same time also conditioned by way of mutuality, "just like three sticks propped up one by another." The 4 mental groups are one for another a condition by way of mutuality. So also are the 4 elements, and also mentality and corporeality at the moment of conception.

(8) Support-condition (nissaya-paccaya). This condition refers either to a pre-nascent (s. 10) or co-nascent (s. 6) phenomenon which is aiding other phenomena in the manner of a foundation or base, just as the trees have the earth as their foundation, or as the oil-painting rests on the canvas. In this way, the 5 sense-organs and the physical base of the mind are for the corresponding 6 kinds of consciousness a prenascent, i.e. previously arisen, condition by way of support. Further all co-nascent (s. 6) phenomena are mutually (s. 7) conditioned by each other by way of support.

(9) Decisive-support (or inducement) condition (upanissaya-paccaya) is threefold, namely:

(a) by way of object (ārammanūpanissaya-paccaya),
(b) by way of proximity (anantarūpanissaya),
(c) natural decisive support (pakatupanissaya).
These conditions act as strong inducement or cogent reason.

(a) Anything past, present or future, corporeal or mental, real or imaginary, may, as object of our thinking, become a decisive support, or strong inducement, to moral, immoral or karmically neutral states of mind. Evil things, by wrong thinking about them, become an inducement to immoral life; by right thinking, an inducement to moral life. But good things may be an inducement not only to similarly good things, but also to bad things, such as self-conceit, vanity, envy, etc.
(b;) is identical with proximity condition (No. 4).
(c) Faith, virtue, etc., produced in one's own mind, or the influence of climate, food, etc., on one's body and mind, may act as natural and decisive support-conditions. Faith may be a direct and natural inducement to charity, virtue to mental training, etc.; greed to theft, hate to murder; unsuitable food and climate to ill-health; friends to spiritual progress or deterioration.
(10) Pre-nascence-condition (purejāta-paccaya) refers to something previously arisen, which forms a base for something arising later on. For example, the 5 physical sense-organs and the physical base of mind, having already arisen at the time of birth, form the condition for the consciousness arising later, and for the mental phenomena associated therewith.

(11) Post-nascence-condition (pacchā-jāta-paccaya) refers to consciousness and the phenomena therewith associated, because they are - just as is the feeling of hunger- a necessary condition for the preservation of this already arisen body.

(12) Repetition-condition (āsevana-paccaya) refers to the karmical consciousness, in which each time the preceding impulsive moments (javana-citta, q.v.) are for all the succeeding ones a condition by way of repetition and frequency, just as in learning by heart, through constant repetition, the later recitation becomes gradually easier and easier.

(13) Karma-condition (kamma-paccaya). The pre-natal karma (i.e karma-volitions, kamma-cetanā, in a previous birth) is the generating condition (cause) of the 5 sense-organs, the fivefold sense-consciousness, and the other karma-produced mental and corporeal phenomena in a later birth. - Karmical volition is also a condition by way of karma for the co-nascent mental phenomena associated therewith, but these phenomena are in no way karma-results.

(14) Karma-result-condition (vipāka-paccaya). The karma-resultant 5 kinds of sense-consciousness are a condition by way of karma-result for the co-nascent mental and corporeal phenomena.

(15) Nutriment-condition (āhāra-paccaya). For the 4 nutriments, s. āhāra.

(16) Faculty-condition (indriya-paccaya). This condition applies to 20 faculties (indriya), leaving out No. 7 and 8 from the 22 faculties. Of these 20 faculties, the 5 physical sense-organs (1 - 5), in their capacity as faculties, form a condition only for uncorporeal phenomena (eye-consciousness etc.); physical vitality (6) and all the remaining faculties, for the co-nascent mental and corporeal phenomena.

(17) Jhāna-condition (jhāna-paccaya) is a name for the 7 so-called jhāna-factors, as these form a condition to the co-nascent mental and corporeal phenomena, to wit:

(1) thought-conception (vitakka),
(2) discursive thinking (vicāra),
(3) interest (pīti),
(4) joy (sukha),
(5) sadness (domanassa),
(6) indifference (upekkhā),
(7) concentration (samādhi). (For definition s. Pāli terms)
1, 2, 3, 4, 7 are found in 4 classes of greedy consciousness (s. Tab.I. 22-25); 1, 2, 5, 7 in hateful consciousness (Tab.I.30, 31); 1, 2, 6, 7 in the classes of deluded consciousness (Tab.I.32, 33).

This condition does not only apply to jhāna alone, but also to the general intensifying ('absorbing') impact of these 7 factors.

(18) Path-condition (magga-paccaya) refers to the 12 path-factors, as these are for the karmically wholesome and unwholesome mental phenomena associated with them, a way of escape from this or that mental constitution, namely:

(1) knowledge (paññā = sammāditthi, right understanding),
(2) (right or wrong) thought-conception (vitakka),
(3) right speech (sammā-vācā),
(4) right bodily action (sammā-kammanta),
(5) right livelihood (sammā-ājīva),
(6) (right or wrong) energy (viriya),
(7) (right or wrong) mindfulness (sati),
(8) (right or wrong) concentration (samādhi),
(9) wrong views (micchāditthi),
(10) wrong speech (micchā-vācā),
(11) wrong bodily action (micchā-kammanta),
(12) wrong livelihood (micchā-ājīva). Cf. magga.
(19) Association-condition (sampayutta-paccaya) refers to the co-nascent (s. 6) and mutually (s. 7) conditioned 4 mental groups (khandha), "as they aid each other by their being associated, by having a common physical base, a common object, and by their arising and disappearing simultaneously" (Patth. Com.).

(20) Dissociation-condition (vippayutta-paccaya) refers to such phenomena as aid other phenomena by not having the same physical base (eye, etc.) and objects. Thus corporeal phenomena are for mental phenomena, and conversely, a condition by way of dissociation, whether co-nascent or not.

(2l) Presence-condition (atthi-paccaya) refers to a phenomenon - being pre-nascent or co-nascent - which through its presence is a condition for other phenomena. This condition applies to the conditions Nos. 6, 7, 8, 10, 11.

(22) Absence-condition (natthi-paccaya) refers to consciousness, etc., which has just passed, and which thus forms the necessary condition for the immediately following stage of consciousness by giving it an opportunity to arise. Cf. No. 4.

(23) Disappearance-condition (vigata-paccaya) is identical with No. 22.

(24) Non-disappearance-condition (avigata-paccaya) is identical with No. 21.

These 24 conditions should be known thoroughly for a detailed understanding of that famous formula of the dependent origination (paticcasamuppāda). Cf. Fund. III, Guide p. 117 ff. (App.) .

See The Significance of Dependent Origination, by Nyanatiloka (WHEEL 140).


Hope this helps

Metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby Spiny Norman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:43 am

Peter wrote:"Conditions" doesn't work for me. It sounds like "influences" and that's not what is meant. What is meant is "necessary condition". Feeling is a necessary condition for craving. If there was no feeling then there could not be craving.




That's the way I see it. I think some people say "A conditions B" when they actually mean "A is the condition for B", but IMO it is better to avoid possible confusion and just say "A is the condition for B", which ensures that the correct meaning of paccaya is conveyed.


P
I'm a lumberjack, and I'm OK....
User avatar
Spiny Norman
 
Posts: 2760
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Spam, wonderful spam

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby Spiny Norman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:46 am

Peter wrote:Saying "ignorance conditions fabrications" does not imply that "with the cessation of ignorance comes the cessation of fabrications". Without this implication all of the teaching on liberation falls apart.



I think that's a very important point, and is underlined by the general formula of DO I mentioned earlier:

"When this exists, that comes to be; with the arising of this, that arises. When this does not exist, that does not come to be; with the cessation of this, that ceases."

P
I'm a lumberjack, and I'm OK....
User avatar
Spiny Norman
 
Posts: 2760
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:32 am
Location: Spam, wonderful spam

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby jcsuperstar » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:02 pm

Peter wrote:"Conditions" doesn't work for me. It sounds like "influences" and that's not what is meant. What is meant is "necessary condition". Feeling is a necessary condition for craving. If there was no feeling then there could not be craving.

I don't see how one could produce the same grammatical result with a verb.

seems to make the most sense, especially in a causal sense otherwise it seems like you have all these things already and they're just acting upon one another, which might work in some cases but how would you then explain having birth and death at the same time influencing each other? logically one would have to come before the other.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
User avatar
jcsuperstar
 
Posts: 1915
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:15 am
Location: alaska

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby Sylvester » Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:09 pm

jcsuperstar wrote:
Peter wrote:"Conditions" doesn't work for me. It sounds like "influences" and that's not what is meant. What is meant is "necessary condition". Feeling is a necessary condition for craving. If there was no feeling then there could not be craving.

I don't see how one could produce the same grammatical result with a verb.

seems to make the most sense, especially in a causal sense otherwise it seems like you have all these things already and they're just acting upon one another, which might work in some cases but how would you then explain having birth and death at the same time influencing each other? logically one would have to come before the other.


The odd thing about DO is that any of its nidanas can ultimately be reduced to the simple iddapaccayata formulation. That formula is expressed in the "locative absolute" which allows the "cause" to either precede or to be contemporaneous with the "effect". If the "cause" precedes, there is no time limit specified as to how long that period is.

Might be a bit difficult to construct how something as a paccaya (noun) will paccayeti (verb) something else, given that iddapaccayata is expressed in simple existential terms without going into details of the relationship between "cause" and "effect".

With metta
Sylvester
 
Posts: 1538
Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 9:57 am

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby acinteyyo » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:46 pm

porpoise wrote:I've been looking at the meaning of "paccaya" in dependent origination. It's usually translated as "condition".
I've seen paccaya used as a verb, in the sense of "shapes" or "influences", but I believe this to be incorrect. As I see it paccaya is a noun, not a verb. Paccaya ( "condition" ) is something on which something else, the so-called 'conditioned thing', is dependent, and without which the latter cannot be.

The interpretation of paccaya as a noun, not a verb, is IMO supported by the general formula for dependent arising which appears in MN38 and elsewhere:
"When this exists, that comes to be; with the arising of this, that arises. When this does not exist, that does not come to be; with the cessation of this, that ceases."

Your thoughts?

P

Hi,

as far as I know your right. paccayā is a noun and means "condition", "cause" or "requisite".
The general formula supports it:
"Imasmim sati idam hoti, imass'uppādā idam uppajjati; yadidam avijjāpaccayā sankhārā, sankhārapaccayā viññānam..."
translated into:
"When there is this this is, with arising of this this arises; that is to say, nescience condition (or cause), determinations, determinations condition (or cause), consciousness..."
Which is to understand this way:
"When there is necience as condition (or cause), there is determiniations, with the arising of necience as condition, determinations arise..."
And the same for the cessation:
"Imasmim asati idam na hoti, imassa nirodhā idam nirujjhati; yadidam avijjānirodhā sankhāranirodho..."
"When there is not this, this is not, with the cessation of this, this ceases, that is to say cessation of nescience, cessation of determinations..."

This also tells us about the relation of time of cause and effect. Because in the first part, we see that for example nescience is the condition for determinations. Just with that we can't tell anything about the involvement of time. But the second part tells us, when there is not nescience, determinations aren't. So now it becomes clear that with the arising of the cause the effect arises and can only be as long as the cause is and when the cause isn't anymore, then there is no effect, (according to the second part) so with the cessation of the cause, the effect ceases.

A simile, imagine ebb and flow in a bay and the dependent origination of this phenomenon. When there is water as condition there is sea, with the arising of water, sea arises. When there is not water, sea isn't, with the cessation of water, sea ceases.

Either there is water and sea or none, same applies for DO. Either there is the cause and the effect or there is none.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Api cāhaṃ, āvuso, imasmiṃyeva byāmamatte kaḷevare, sasaññimhi samanake lokañca paññāpemi lokasamudayañca lokanirodhañca lokanirodhagāminiñca paṭipadan. (AN4.45)

:anjali:
User avatar
acinteyyo
 
Posts: 1032
Joined: Mon Jun 01, 2009 9:48 am
Location: Neuburg/Donau, Germany

Re: The meaning of paccaya in DO

Postby rowyourboat » Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:24 pm

I feel paccaya is best translated as 'specifically gives rise to'.

This also understood by 'When this does not arise that does not arise'.

'conditions' as a translation is just wrong. It is not a matter of influnecing - if it was nibbana could not be attained by the reverse cessation sequence of the DO.

With metta

RYB
With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha
rowyourboat
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 5:29 pm
Location: London, UK


Return to General Theravāda discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bhikkhu_Samahita, Bing [Bot], cooran and 4 guests