The symbolism of Wheels

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The symbolism of Wheels

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jan 02, 2009 12:14 am

Greetings,

A quick sutta to share...

AN 4.31: Cakka Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

"There are these four wheels, endowed with which human beings & devas develop a four-wheeled prosperity; endowed with which human beings & devas in no long time achieve greatness & abundance in terms of wealth. Which four? Living in a civilized land, associating with people of integrity, directing oneself rightly, and having done merit in the past. These are the four wheels, endowed with which human beings & devas develop a four-wheeled prosperity; endowed with which human beings & devas in no long time achieve greatness & abundance in terms of wealth.

"If you dwell in a civilized place,
make friends with the noble ones,
rightly direct yourself,
and have made merit in the past,
there will roll to you
crops, wealth, status, honor,
& happiness."


I like this sutta. It's a nice simple guide to happiness and good destinations. Whilst we strive for the final cessation of suffering, it's certainly more pleasant to have a pleasant destination along the way. Sticking to the wheel analogy, it's better to have a smooth ride than a bumpy ride.

I also find it interesting that the word 'cakka' (wheel) is used here in a different sense to that of the 'turning of the Dhamma wheel' done by the Buddha in...

SN 56.11- Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Wheels do seem to have a certain symbolic significance in the Dhamma.

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)
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Re: The symbolism of Wheels

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Jan 05, 2009 9:58 pm

Thanks for the great quotes from the Canon on wheels. Thus, here we are with the Dhamma WHEEL forum, turning the wheel some more, hopefully with some smooth rides.
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Re: The symbolism of Dhamma Wheel

Postby Will » Fri Jan 16, 2009 6:40 pm

Peter Harvey has a note in his translation of SN 56.11 which is suggestive, but I still am puzzled what a spinning chakra means when a buddha's teachings take root or a Chakravartin rules with the Dharma?

Basic Pattern, Wheel of the (Vision) of: Dhamma-cakka. "Wheel" is cakka, and vision or eye is cakkhu. Given their similarity, some pun may be implied here, especially as the Dhamma-wheel is only said to turn the moment that Koṇḍañña gains the Dhamma-cakkhu, vision of the Dhamma/Basic Pattern. Moreover, in Buddhist art, Dhamma-wheels sometimes resemble eyes. The Dhamma-wheel is set in motion in the instant Koṇḍañña sees the realities pointed out by the Buddha. It does not turn just from the Buddha teaching, but when there is transmission of insight into Dhamma from the Buddha to another person, thus inaugurating the influence of Dhamma in the world. This parallels a passage in the Cakkavatti-sīhanāda Sutta, where a divine wheel appears in the sky only when a Cakkavatti (Wheel-turning) ruler, who rules according to Dhamma — righteously and with compassion, ascends the throne, and it follows him as he moves through the world, conquering without violence (D iii 61-2).
This noble eightfold path is the ancient path traveled by all the Buddhas of eons past. Nagara Sutta
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Re: The symbolism of Wheels

Postby Will » Fri Jan 16, 2009 6:43 pm

This a nifty feature. One need not reply to a thread to bump it up to the top of New Posts or Active Topics. At the bottom left of the page, near the Bookmarks button, is one for Bump Topic. Click on that and up and away it goes. :thumbsup:
This noble eightfold path is the ancient path traveled by all the Buddhas of eons past. Nagara Sutta
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