Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

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Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:01 pm

Hi folks,

I'm not a Pali scholar, but I have a question. In the Ajata Sutta Norman and DeGraff translate (I believe the Pali word is asamuppannaṃ) as either "everlasting" or "permanent."

What do the Pali scholars here think of this translation? My gut is to say the word should probably be translated as "timeless," or "beyond time." The only Pali-English dictionary entry I could find said, "wrong time."

Please help. Thank you,

S
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:26 pm

Here's the Pāli text for reference:
6. Ajātasuttaṃ

43. Vuttañhetaṃ Bhagavatā, vuttamarahatāti me sutaṃ —

“Atthi, bhikkhave, ajātaṃ abhūtaṃ akataṃ asaṅkhataṃ. No cetaṃ, bhikkhave, abhavissa ajātaṃ abhūtaṃ akataṃ asaṅkhataṃ, nayidha jātassa bhūtassa katassa saṅkhatassa nissaraṇaṃ paññāyetha. Yasmā ca kho, bhikkhave, atthi ajātaṃ abhūtaṃ akataṃ asaṅkhataṃ, tasmā jātassa bhūtassa katassa saṅkhatassa nissaraṇaṃ paññāyatī”ti. Etamatthaṃ Bhagavā avoca. Tatthetaṃ iti vuccati —

“Jātaṃ bhūtaṃ samuppannaṃ, kataṃ saṅkhatamaddhuvaṃ.
Jarāmaraṇasaṅghāṭaṃ, roganīḷaṃ pabhaṅguraṃ.

“Āhāranettippabhavaṃ, nālaṃ tadabhinandituṃ.
Tassa nissaraṇaṃ santaṃ, atakkāvacaraṃ dhuvaṃ.

“Ajātaṃ asamuppannaṃ, asokaṃ virajaṃ padaṃ.
Nirodho dukkhadhammānaṃ, saṅkhārūpasamo sukho”ti.

Ayampi attho vutto Bhagavatā, iti me sutanti. Chaṭṭhaṃ.
AIM WebsitePāli FontsIn This Very LifeBuddhist ChroniclesSoftware (Upasampadā: 24th June, 1979)
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Wed Aug 15, 2012 8:03 pm

Actually, I think asamuppannaṃ is "unproduced." So I'm not seeing which word word or phrase could be translated as "permanent" or "everlasting." Anyone else? "Dhuvam?"

*edit*

dhuvam: permanent, continuous, stable... [Pali English Dictionary , T.W. Rhys Davids, et al.]

Is this the opposite of anicca, i.e., niccataa?

Okay, I think this narrows it down for me. Buddha could have said, niccataa and expressly made Nibbana the opposite of anicca. But he didn't.

Is Dhuvam sufficiently nuanced in Pali to emphasize continuity and stability over permanence?
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Aug 15, 2012 8:55 pm

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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:14 pm

This said by the Blessed One, the Worthy One, was heard by me
in this way: "Monks, there is freedom from birth, freedom from
becoming, freedom from making, freedom from conditioning.
For, monks if there were not this freedom from birth, freedom from
becoming, freedom from making, freedom from conditioning,
then escape from that which is birth, becoming, making,
conditioning, would not be known here. But, monks, because there
is freedom from birth, freedom from becoming, freedom from
making, freedom from conditioning, therefore the escape from that
which is birth, becoming, making, conditioning is known."

This meaning the Blessed One spoke, it is spoken here in this way:

That which is born, become, arisen, made, conditioned,
And thus unstable, put together of decay and death,
The seat of disease, brittle,
Caused and craving food,
That is not fit to find pleasure in.

Being freed of this, calmed beyond conjecture, stable,
Freed from birth, freed from arising
[asamuppannaṃ], freed from sorrow,
Freed from passions, the elements of suffering stopped,
The conditioning [of greed, hatred and delusion] appeased,
This is ease [bliss].
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
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Thu Aug 16, 2012 1:00 am

tiltbillings wrote:This said by the Blessed One, the Worthy One, was heard by me
in this way: "Monks, there is freedom from birth, freedom from
becoming, freedom from making, freedom from conditioning.
For, monks if there were not this freedom from birth, freedom from
becoming, freedom from making, freedom from conditioning,
then escape from that which is birth, becoming, making,
conditioning, would not be known here. But, monks, because there
is freedom from birth, freedom from becoming, freedom from
making, freedom from conditioning, therefore the escape from that
which is birth, becoming, making, conditioning is known."

This meaning the Blessed One spoke, it is spoken here in this way:

That which is born, become, arisen, made, conditioned,
And thus unstable, put together of decay and death,
The seat of disease, brittle,
Caused and craving food,
That is not fit to find pleasure in.

Being freed of this, calmed beyond conjecture, stable,
Freed from birth, freed from arising
[asamuppannaṃ], freed from sorrow,
Freed from passions, the elements of suffering stopped,
The conditioning [of greed, hatred and delusion] appeased,
This is ease [bliss].


Is this your own or is this from someone?

I think I'm interested in the word translated by you as "stable." I believe the word is "dhuvam." Why is "stable" chosen here rather, than, say, "continuous," or "permanent"?
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:03 am

Here's another occurrence of dhuvam:

dhuvaṃ buddho bhavissasi

found repeatedly in the Buddhavamsa.

http://www.palikanon.com/pali/khuddaka/ ... avamsa.htm

So what does this phrase mean?
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Aug 16, 2012 4:50 pm

suttametta wrote:
tiltbillings wrote: . . .


Is this your own or is this from someone?
Mine, at the end of four years of Pali study in the South Asian/Buddhist Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Also, ther reality is that if you don't use it, you loose. Where I was in the late 80's with Pali, is not where I am now.

I think I'm interested in the word translated by you as "stable." I believe the word is "dhuvam." Why is "stable" chosen here rather, than, say, "continuous," or "permanent"?
The word was carefully chosen. As worldling we are not stable; we are easily upset by our passions and all that happy stuff. The arahant is not upset, but is, rather, stable, being free of greed hatred and delusion. Like anything, how the word is to be translated depends upon the context. Also, I wanted keep any hint of metaphysics out of it. I think unstable and stable fit nicely in the flow of words/ideas being presented in these verses.

    That which is born, become, arisen, made, conditioned,
    And thus unstable, put together of decay and death,
    The seat of disease, brittle,
    Caused and craving food,
    That is not fit to find pleasure in.

    Being freed of this, calmed beyond conjecture, stable,
    Freed from birth, freed from arising, freed from sorrow,
    Freed from passions, the elements of suffering stopped,
    The conditioning [of greed, hatred and delusion] appeased,
    This is ease [bliss].
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
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:01 pm

suttametta wrote:Here's another occurrence of dhuvam:

dhuvaṃ buddho bhavissasi

found repeatedly in the Buddhavamsa.

http://www.palikanon.com/pali/khuddaka/ ... avamsa.htm

So what does this phrase mean?
dhuvaṃ here means certainty. Assuredly a buddha you will be.
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
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:05 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
suttametta wrote:Here's another occurrence of dhuvam:

dhuvaṃ buddho bhavissasi

found repeatedly in the Buddhavamsa.

http://www.palikanon.com/pali/khuddaka/ ... avamsa.htm

So what does this phrase mean?
dhuvaṃ here means certainty. Assuredly a buddha you will be.


I see. There is a synergy between certainty and stability. So permanence and everlasting would be a bit different in tone. Thank you, Tiltbillings.
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:35 pm

Tilt,

To your knowledge is there anywhere in the suttas where nibbana is described as permanent?

Thank you,

SM
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:47 pm

suttametta wrote:Tilt,

To your knowledge is there anywhere in the suttas where nibbana is described as permanent?

Thank you,

SM
The destruction of greed, hatred, and delusion is considered permanent in that these conditioning factors do not re-arise.
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
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:03 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
suttametta wrote:Tilt,

To your knowledge is there anywhere in the suttas where nibbana is described as permanent?

Thank you,

SM
The destruction of greed, hatred, and delusion is considered permanent in that these conditioning factors do not re-arise.


I understand. There's nowhere the nibbana "consciousness without feature..." is described as something permanent. Would that be fair?
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:16 pm

suttametta wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
suttametta wrote:Tilt,

To your knowledge is there anywhere in the suttas where nibbana is described as permanent?

Thank you,

SM
The destruction of greed, hatred, and delusion is considered permanent in that these conditioning factors do not re-arise.


I understand. There's nowhere the nibbana "consciousness without feature..." is described as something permanent. Would that be fair?
What actual text are you referring to?
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
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:20 pm

tiltbillings wrote:What actual text are you referring to?


Kevatta Sutta

"consciousness without feature, without end, luminous all around..."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Brahma-nimantanika Sutta

"consciousness without surface, endless, radiant all round..."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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Re: Itivuttaka 43: Ajata Sutta

Postby suttametta » Fri Aug 17, 2012 6:43 pm

Kevatta Sutta's phrase:

Viññāṇaṃ anidassanaṃ, anantaṃ sabbatopabhaṃ

Viññāṇaṃ: consciousness, perception,
anidassanaṃ: [no] features, signs, characteristics
anantam: infinite, endless, eternal, boundless, unending
sabbato: all around, everywhere, in all respects
pabham: light, radiance, shine

My rendering:
"Everywhere, the infinitely radiant and featureless perception."

Brahmanimantanika Sutta's phrase:

Viññāṇaṃ anidassanaṃ anantaṃ sabbato pabhaṃ

Which is exactly the same phrase.

The use of the word "anantam" here makes is pretty clear the Buddha means not just stable, but infinite in this perception's radiance and featurelessness.
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