SabbasavaSutta: appajaananto?

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SabbasavaSutta: appajaananto?

Postby lojong1 » Sun Aug 22, 2010 12:12 pm

I don't have a dictionary handy, and there's a section here that gets altered without explanation.
Is the underlined section wrong, tricky, or meaning-unknown? Nappajānāti, fine. Appajānanto...should there be an initial 'n'?

Sabbaasava Sutta -- abandon by seeing: puthujjano "manasikaraṇīye dhamme nappajānāti, amanasikaraṇīye dhamme nappajānāti. So manasikaraṇīye dhamme appajānanto amanasikaraṇīye dhamme appajānanto, ye dhammā na manasikaraṇīyā, te dhamme manasi karoti, ye dhammā manasikaraṇīyā te dhamme na manasi karoti.

Thanissaro and Bodhi/Nanamoli edit out the whole underlined section, translating it as "this being so," which would mean appajānanto is a regular participle of nappajānāti = 'does not know/understand'?
Normally thorough Piya Tan brackets this nonsense English chunk with no explanation: "[does not understand what things not to pay attention to, what things not to pay attention to.]
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Re: SabbasavaSutta: appajaananto?

Postby yuttadhammo » Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:30 pm

lojong1 wrote:I don't have a dictionary handy, and there's a section here that gets altered without explanation.
Is the underlined section wrong, tricky, or meaning-unknown? Nappajānāti, fine. Appajānanto...should there be an initial 'n'?

'na' is a nipaata; when combined with an ordinary verb, it retains its original form: na karoti, na gacchati, etc. I'm not sure why the sutta has nappajaanaati; probably something to do with rhythm, as adding a 'p' lengthens the syllable before, changing the meter.

In the case of pajaananto, it is a nominal form of the verb, and therefore must be negated in a different way, as is true of all nominal forms. This is done by combining the na with the pajaanaati in a compound, where it becomes "a" if followed by a consonant or "ana" if followed by a vowel, e.g.:

agato (not gone) agacchanto (not going) agatvaa (having not gone), etc.

anaagato (not come) anaagacchanto (not coming) anaagatvaa (having not come), etc.

As you can see, the initial 'n' is lost in all cases, following ordinary nominal forms, e.g. asama.no, abraahma.no, etc.

Thanissaro and Bodhi/Nanamoli edit out the whole underlined section, translating it as "this being so," which would mean appajānanto is a regular participle of nappajānāti = 'does not know/understand'?
Normally thorough Piya Tan brackets this nonsense English chunk with no explanation: "[does not understand what things not to pay attention to, what things not to pay attention to.]

They do that to avoid repetition, of course. The repetition is nice, I would leave it in, but I guess they feel it is less than palatable for most new-comers to spell it out like in the Pali. Originally it was all spoken, and the spoken language lends itself to repetition much more nicely. The entire phrase would be, according to Bodhi's translation:

idha, bhikkhave , assutavā puthujjano ariyānaṃ adassāvī ariyadhammassa akovido ariyadhamme avinīto, sappurisānaṃ adassāvī sappurisadhammassa akovido sappurisadhamme avinīto manasikaraṇīye dhamme nappajānāti, amanasikaraṇīye dhamme nappajānāti. so manasikaraṇīye dhamme appajānanto amanasikaraṇīye dhamme appajānanto, ye dhammā na manasikaraṇīyā, te dhamme manasi karoti, ye dhammā manasikaraṇīyā te dhamme na manasi karoti.

Here, bhikkhus, an untaught ordinary person, who has no regard for noble ones, is unskilled in the Dhamma of the noble ones, is undisciplined in the Dhamma of the noble ones, who has no regard for true men, is unskilled in the Dhamma of true men, is undisciplined in the Dhamma of true men, does not understand what things are fit for attention, does not understand what things are unfit for attention. He, not understanding what things are fit for attention, not understanding what things are unfit for attention, attends to those things unfit for attention and does not attend to those things fit for attention.


Much more to my liking than the original:

Here, bhikkhus, an untaught ordinary person, who has no regard for noble ones and is unskilled and undisciplined in their Dhamma, who has no regard for true men and is unskilled and undisciplined in their Dhamma, does not understand what things are fit for attention and what things are unfit for attention. Since that is so, he attends to those things unfit for attention and he does not attend to those things fit for attention.


Many would probably disagree :)
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