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Parileyyaka Sutta

At Parileyyaka

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
For free distribution only

I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Kosambi, at Ghosita's monastery. Then in the early morning, having put on his robes and carrying his bowl and outer robe, he went into Kosambi for alms. Having gone for alms in Kosambi, after the meal, returning from his alms round, he set his own lodging in order and -- without calling his attendant or informing the community of monks -- set out wandering, alone and without a companion.

Then, not long after the Blessed One had left, a certain monk went to Ven. 聲anda and on arrival said to him, "Just now, my friend 聲anda, the Blessed One set his own lodging in order and -- without calling his attendant or informing the community of monks -- set out wandering, alone and without a companion."

"Whenever the Blessed One sets his own lodging in order and -- without calling his attendant or informing the community of monks -- sets out wandering, alone and without a companion, he wants to live alone. He is not to be followed by anyone at such times."

Then, after wandering by stages, the Blessed One came to Parileyyaka. There he stayed at the root of the Auspicious Sal Tree.

Then a large number of monks went to Ven. 聲anda and on arrival exchanged courteous greetings. After an exchange of friendly courtesies and greetings they sat to one side. As they were sitting there, they said to Ven. 聲anda, "It has been a long time since we heard a Dhamma talk in the Blessed One's presence. We want to hear a Dhamma talk in the Blessed One's presence."

Then Ven. 聲anda went with those monks to where the Blessed One was staying in Parileyyaka, at the root of the Auspicious Sal Tree, and on arrival, after bowing down to him, sat down to one side. As they were sitting there, the Blessed One instructed, urged, roused, and encouraged them with a talk on Dhamma.

Now, on that occasion this train of thought appeared in the awareness of one of the monks: "Now I wonder -- knowing in what way, seeing in what way, does one without delay put an end to the effluents?"

The Blessed One, perceiving with his awareness the train of thought in the monk's awareness, said to the monks, "I have analyzed and taught you the Dhamma, monks. I have analyzed and taught you the four frames of reference, the four right exertions, the four bases of power, the five faculties, the five strengths, the seven factors for Awakening, and the noble eightfold path. And yet, even though I have analyzed and taught you the Dhamma, still there appears this train of thought in the awareness of one of the monks: 'Now I wonder -- knowing in what way, seeing in what way, does one without delay put an end to the effluents?'

"Well then -- knowing in what way, seeing in what way, does one without delay put an end to the effluents? There is the case where an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person -- who has no regard for noble ones, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma; who has no regard for men of integrity, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma -- assumes form to be the self. That assumption is a fabrication. Now what is the cause, what is the origination, what is the birth, what is the coming-into-existence of that fabrication? To an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person, touched by that which is felt born of contact with ignorance, craving arises. That fabrication is born of that. And that fabrication is inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen. That craving... That feeling... That contact... That ignorance is inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen. It is by knowing and seeing in this way that one without delay puts an end to the effluents.

"Or he doesn't assume form to be the self, but he assumes the self as possessing form... form as in the self... self as in form... or feeling to be the self... the self as possessing feeling... feeling as in the self... self as in feeling... or perception to be the self... the self as possessing perception... perception as in the self... self as in perception... or fabrications to be the self... the self as possessing fabrications... fabrications as in the self... self as in fabrications... or consciousness to be the self... the self as possessing consciousness... consciousness as in the self... self as in consciousness.

"Now that assumption is a fabrication. What is the cause, what is the origination, what is the birth, what is the coming-into-existence of that fabrication? To an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person, touched by the feeling born of contact with ignorance, craving arises. That fabrication is born of that. And that fabrication is inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen. That craving... That feeling... That contact... That ignorance is inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen. It is by knowing and seeing in this way that one without delay puts an end to the effluents.

"Or he doesn't assume form to be the self... but he may have a view such as this: 'This self is the same as the cosmos. This I will be after death, constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change.' This eternalist view is a fabrication... Or... he may have a view such as this: 'I would not be, neither would there be what is mine. I will not be, neither will there be what is mine.' This annihilationist view is a fabrication... Or... he may be doubtful and uncertain, having come to no conclusion with regard to the true Dhamma. That doubt, uncertainty, and coming-to-no-conclusion is a fabrication.

"What is the cause, what is the origination, what is the birth, what is the coming-into-existence of that fabrication? To an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person, touched by what is felt born of contact with ignorance, craving arises. That fabrication is born of that. And that fabrication is inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen. That craving... That feeling... That contact... That ignorance is inconstant, fabricated, dependently co-arisen. It is by knowing and seeing in this way that one without delay puts an end to the effluents."

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