6 - Right Understanding
7 - Vipassana Meditation
6 - RIGHT UNDERSTANDING
Buddhist Practice begins with Right Understanding (sammā-ditthi), otherwise
called Right Views, and ends with Right Understanding of a higher stage.
This Chapter gives food for meditation, and meditation is always with knowledge.
Buddhism is a religion of action, and there’s no time to waste.
The Buddha renounced his kingdom in order to solve the problem of Birth and
Death. There is Death because of the arising of Birth.
As soon as we awake, the idea of Self begins. The 6-Door machine begins to work
We perceive the outside world through the 6 Doors.
We all want pleasure and pleasurable feelings all the time. However, these
pleasures cloy and turn to suffering.
The 5-Aggregates arise. They flash forth but are evanescent. They appear and
disappear, arise and cease. They are sankhāra, one of the meanings of which is:
Formed, Compounded, Conditioned. It is the same as Sankhata, and comprise all
phenomena of existence.
Only sometimes arise the 6-Grasping Aggregates when there is unwise thinking,
and produce mental suffering, like worry, grief, anxiety, etc. This is causal
suffering and cause future existences. We must ensure the cessation of causal
suffering at the stage of craving in order to stop future existence. This is
done by Vipassanā Meditation.
In Vipassanā Meditation, we must know the difference between paramattha and
paññatti. Paramattha deals with the ultimates. There are 82 ultimates, each
having its own individual essence, called sabhāva.
In Vipassanā Meditation,
There must be knowledge of the ultimates of Mind and Matter, each having its
We must know the cause and effect of the arising and ceasing of these ultimates;
We must know Anicca, Dukkha and Anattā with reference to these ultimates.
Eventually, we get Magga Wisdom, leading to Nirvana.
The first step is to become a Sotāpanna, which means the elimination of the
The Doctrine of Anattā can be understood as composed of 3 parts.
1. there is no soul,
2. there is no self,
3. there is no control
over our body processes.
The human body does not exist in terms of paramattha; it is on a par with the
statement in conventional truth that water exists, but water does not exist in
terms of ultimate truth, that is, in reality. The Law of Anattā says that the
human body carries out its bodily functions automatically and we have no
control over it, and there’s no need to put a Self into it.
Once the Buddha understood that every thing in this world was anattā and that
there was no creator, he developed an independence of Mind that was unique in
the history of human thought.
The 2nd Noble Truth says that craving is the cause of Suffering. Craving is a
Mind Constituent and arises along with Consciousness. Only when Consciousness
arises can Craving arise Craving no longer arises with an Arahat, but with
ordinary persons, Craving arises occasionally. As Craving arises with
Consciousness, it is momentary and fleeting, but when it does arise, it creates
Craving arises because of ignorance of the 4 Noble Truths. Arahats know the 4
Noble Truths and they have practised them to perfection. Sotāpannas know the 4
Noble Truths but they have not practised them to perfection.
Buddha says that everything is anattā. This doctrine is uniquely his.
When anattā is realised, there is no more attachment to self. There is
detachment from the 5-Aggregates.
In Western parlance, if we carry on a conversation and, say, are embarrassed, or
do not like, the trend of the conversation we change the subject. In
Abhidhamma. the same thing is called changing the object.
Most Meditation Centres begin with concentration on paññatti objects but they
never seem to get beyond this point. Ordinarily you contemplate on paññatti
objects, like dāna (charity), sīla (precepts) and samatha (concentration).
Some meditation centres start you on vipassanā practices of meditating on the
sabhāvas of the paramattha objects, of which there are so many. But they can go
no further correctly.
But when you do Vipassanā meditation in your body and contemplate on the arising
and cessation of the 5-Aggregates you come to "see" the 3 characteristics of
anicca, dukkha and anattā.
You "see" or are aware of the 3 characteristics in 3 different ways, namely, by
Consciousness (viññāna), Perception (saññā) and Wisdom (pañña).
Firstly, in respect of awareness by viññāna. In the beginning it is
cakkhu-viññāna, which is aware of just the seeing, of sotā-viññāna, which is
aware of just the hearing, and so on. Then comes automatically
mind-consciousness or mano-viññāna; first is mano-dhatu followed by
Secondly, in respect of awareness by Perception (saññā). Saññā just marks and
notes; it marks and notes the 3 characteristics of the 5-Aggregates.
Thirdly, in respect of awareness by Wisdom (paññā). Wisdom can know everything
in the 31 planes of existence. It knows how the cakkhu-viññāna arises and
sotā-viññāna arises, etc. It knows how mano-viññāna arises. It knows the
sabhāvas of the elements, that water is H20. It knows phassa, vedanā and all
the other 50 cetasikas separately. It knows how the 5-Aggregates arise and
cease. It knows the anicca, dukkha and anattā of the 5-Aggregates. It knows
that cakkhu-viññāna arises only if there is a sensitive eye. If there is a
defective sensitive-eye or if the eye is closed, there is no sensitive-eye in
actuality and there can be no mano-viññāna that would have arisen through
cakkhu-viññāna. (There can, however, be a mano-viññāna arising through other
sense-objects or mental-objects). It knows that sotā-viññāna arises only if
there is a sensitive-ear in actuality. Again, if there is a defective
sensitive-ear, there can be no sotā-viññāna and no mano-viññāna arising
therefrom. And so on with the other sense organs which must not be defective.
And therefore you see that it is only through Wisdom that we reach our goal. So
it is imperative that wisdom should arise, but it arises only through
knowledge. Without knowledge, there can be no wisdom.
So you can see that saññā which marks and notes will not lead to wisdom. A life
time spent on saññā will not lead to wisdom.
Nor will consciousness without knowledge turn to wisdom.
Then there is the question of the existence of a Soul (attā) or Self or "I".
Because of the belief in attā, there have been millenniums and aeons of
existences in samsāra in the 31 planes of existence.
Now, how does this idea of "I" arise? You speak of "I see", "I hear", "I smell",
etc. You use the word "I" every time there is a thought.
Actually, it is "citta" that sees, and hears, and smells. etc. Only when there
is a citta, does the idea of "I" arise.
When there is no citta, no idea of I "arises. We can then ask the question, is
citta "I"? Most people will say that citta is "I". There’s anger because of the
idea of "I". There’s worry because of the idea of "T". There’s every thing
because of the idea of "I". But if there’s no citta, no idea of "I", soul, or
attā or self arises. So can there be an attā, or soul or "T", which is believed
to be a permanent entity?
We also confuse mano-viññāna with "I", or soul, or self or attā. But if there is
no citta, there can be no mano-viññāna, because mano-viññāna cannot arise
without cakkhu-viññāna, sotā-viññāna, etc., or a mental-object
(dhamma-arammana). For a mano-vinyiññā arises only if there is a cause.
Therefore it cannot be an attā, or soul, or self or "I". Accordingly there can
be no soul or attā or self or "I".
In the 31 planes of existence, there is kāma-tanhā, (craving for sensual
pleasures), bhava-tanhā, (craving for existence) and vibhava-tanhā
(annihilation of existence). The idea of soul or self or "I" or attā arises
because of these three beliefs. You have wandered a lot in samsāra because of
this idea of soul, self, attā, or "I", because of Ignorance (avijjā) which
begets kamma-sankhāra (karma productions) which begets the germinal force.
The germinal force in this existence ripens and dies, causing a fresh germinal
force in the next existence, like the chicken and the egg in a non-ending
series. It is this germinal force that separates the species and individuals of
the species in plants and animals and humans and entities in the 31 planes of
If you do samatha-concentration and reach a certain level of proficiency, you
can see the arising and re-arising of these germinal forces.
And you realise the dukkha in all these existences, for all existence and life
But luckily the Buddha taught that there’s a release from birth and death and
dukkha. By practising sammā-ditthi, you achieve anattā-wisdom. After achieving
anattā-wisdom you are left only with the needs of the Ego-entity or personality
or the 5-Aggregates, and no more with its wants. There is no more new
existence, and you are free from kāma-tanhā, bhava-tanhā and vibhava-tanhā. And
there’s no more dukkha. You are off the wheel of existence.
There are many aspects of sammā-ditthi. One aspect is that beings are the owners
of their own karma.
Another aspect arises from a full comprehension of the 3 characteristics of
anicca, dukkha, anattā of the 5-Aggregates.
Another aspect is the vipassanā-ñāna-sammā-ditthi, arising from perception with
And finally the lokuttara-magga-phala-sammā-ditthi arising from the attainment
of the Holy Paths and Fruition thereof.
You get vipassanā wisdom with the 5 dominant cetasikas of paññā (wisdom), saddha
(faith), viriya (diligence), sati (mindfulness) and samādhi (concentration.)
Then you go beyond vipassanā citta. You get to magga-citta with the 8 cetasikas
of the Noble Eightfold Path.
You see Nirvana. The magga-citta merges into Nirvana. Nirvana, incidentally, is
not inside you but outside you.
Though this hook deals with ultimates, we must remember that we live in a
molecular world. All manifestation is in terms of molecules, but we must not
forget the ultimate constitution of molecules, namely, the atoms and atomic
Every aggregation is molecular and therefore paññatti. We see atoms and atomic
particles with the inner eye, but life exists only as molecules.
Descartes said, "cogito, ergo sum", meaning, "I think, therefore I am". He does
not explain what is meant by "I", by "think" or "I am".
However Abhidhamma explains all this and more. It explains how consciousness
arises, how mind is consciousness plus something, etc., etc.
"I" is the personalisation of consciousness, mind, or thought; these 3 words are
used synonymously for citta in the Abhidhamma.
As for "think", the processes of thought, the courses of cognition, are
explained in detail in the Abhidhamma.
"I am" means the 5-Aggregates, the Personality.
If we want to get at the Truth, we must know what citta is. Citta is a paramatta
and cannot be "I", which is paññatti. Therefore, when we do Vipassanā
Meditation, it must be done on paramatta and not on paññatti.
If we meditate on paññati objects, we just get merit in the worlds of kāma, rūpa
and arūpa, but it does not lead to the stage of Sotāpanna which leads to magga
Wisdom and to Nirvana.
We must know how consciousness arises. Consciousnesses arise through the
6-Doors, namely, l. visual consciousness, 2. auditory consciousness, 3. sound
consciousness, 4. smell consciousness, 5. taste consciousness, and 6. mind
They arise when there is conjunction with an object, namely, visual object,
auditory object, sound object, etc. And thus arises awareness of an object.
What is the "I" with reference to the Mind? "I" can be deemed to be the "Agent"
of the Mind. If that be so, whose "Agent" is the Mind? The answer is that Mind
is the "Agent" of the 5 Aggregates.
In Vipassanā Meditation, we are meditating on the 5-Aggregates. And therefore we
must know how and why the 5 Aggregates arise, and the characteristics of each
There are 5-Aggregates in all.
When consciousness arises,
there arises citta and cetasikas, and the citta-produced Aggregate, which is the
viññāna or consciousness Aggregate.
vedanā or feeling Aggregate.
saññā or perception Aggregate.
sankhāra Aggregate of willing and striving with the remainder of the 50
In the mundane world, you use sati (mindfulness), viriya (effort or diligence),
paññā (wisdom) all the time to get all your successes.
Similarly, in the supramundane world, it is sati, viriya, paññā in its
As we get on with Vipassanā Meditation, we come eventually to Magga Wisdom and
the Nirvanic Peace which passes all Understanding.
Buddha taught the Truth. He taught the Truth in line with a succession of
Buddhas. He taught the truth of Birth and Death. He taught the truth of dukkha
(suffering), and how to get out of this samsāra, that’s the Goal, namely,
freedom from Rebirth.
It is a great thought to be liberated at last. After having been once a King,
once a slave, once a rich man, and once a poor man, once a deva, once in
purgatory and a non-ending series of rebirths, at long last, Freedom from
As soon as there is birth, any where and every where, there begins this round of
dukkha. It is just dukkha and dukkha.
I for one would not relish the idea of being reborn into this world, for all is
Similarly, in the other planes of existence. There may be temporary snatches of
so-called happiness (sukkha), for example, when doing jhāna, but it is
basically always dukkha and always back to purgatory.
The universe is molecular. It is mundane. But we are now dealing with the
supramundane. One should not mix up the two.
Then come glimmerings of Freedom from the wheel of existence, Freedom from
After attaining to Nirvana, and before one’s demise, what sort of existence does
one lead? One must understand that this is a world of paññatti.
What sort of existence did the Buddha lead? He could possibly have some
annoyance or anger but without any craving, or some pleasures of taste, etc.,
without any craving.
And before we ourselves become Arahats, we could practise staying without any
craving. During that time, we would be at peace. It be an exciting life.
And thus may Buddha’s teaching lead to Freedom from Rebirth for all in this
Universe, for all in this World-System and all other World-Systems.
7 - VIPASSANA MEDITATION
The purpose of Vipassanā Meditation is to become a Sotāpanna in the first
instance, the first of the Noble Ones, and then go on to the Second and Third
Stage, culminating in becoming an Arahat. The method is to discover and
penetrate into the actually existing ultimate realities, both of matter and
mind, and to arrive at the anicca, dukkha, anattā characteristics of our 5
Aggregates. This leads to the different steps of Vipassanā Wisdom right up to
the stage of Magga and Phala Wisdom and to Nirvana, the highest goal of
It is at the stage of gotrabhu that the vipassanā citta is automatically changed
to that of magga citta. It is the change of lineage from that of a worldling
and you become a Noble One.
The vipassanā citta has its complement of 34 cetasikas, including the 5 dominant
Powers (balas) of paññā, saddha, viriya, sati, and samādhi. It has only 34
because the 3 Abstinences are counted as one, as only one of them functions,
whenever called upon to function, two of them being always idle.
The magga citta has its full complement of 36 cetasikas, including the 8
cetasikas of the 8-fold Noble Path.
Eventually, you break the chain of causation, and you are on the "other shore",
having left the Wheel of Existence.
It is only on the basis of the knowledge of the ultimates that final vipassanā
wisdom can be obtained. For example, meditation on the anicca, dukkha, anattā
characteristics of conventional things (paññatti) cannot produce magga Wisdom.
Suppose two lawyers were arguing before a Judge, all of them learned in the law,
and one lawyer is making his legal points. His lawyer opponent is listening
carefully, and all of a sudden he gets a flash of legal wisdom to counter the
other lawyer’s argument. The legal wisdom cannot come without a knowledge of
the law. Similarly when you meditate with Vipassanā knowledge, you get a flash
of supramundane or transcendental wisdom.
Vipassanā is the study of cause and effect. It is essential that one be able to
make a proper differentiation between paramattha (ultimate realities) and
paññatti (concepts, ideas, terms, etc.); otherwise one will unknowingly fall
into the trap of "meditation" on paññatti.
There are 16 steps in Vipassanā Meditation:
1. Nāma-rūpa pariccheda
ñāna, being the knowledge arrived at by dissecting Mind and Body into their
2. Paccaya pariggaha
ñāna, being the knowledge of the arisings and ceasings, being cause and effect.
3. Samma-sana ñāna, being
the knowledge of the arising and ceasing of the past, future and present.
ñāna, knowledge which reflects on the rise and fall of the 5-Aggregates through
5. Bhanga-nupassanā ñāna,
knowledge which reflects on the breaking up or perishable nature of the
knowledge of the defects of the 5-Aggregates.
ādinava-nupassanā-ñāna, knowledge which reflects on the dangers of the
Nibbida-nupassanā-ñāna, knowledge which reflects on the feeling of disgust
aroused by the 5-Aggregates.
knowledge of the desire for release from the 5-Aggregates which arouse feelings
Patisankha-nupassanā-ñāna, knowledge which reflects on
the detailed analysis of the 5-Aggregates in order to be released from them.
Sankhā-ruppekkhā-ñāna, knowledge of indifference
towards the 5-Aggregates.
Anuloma-ñāna, Adaptive knowledge which arises in
connection with the 4 Noble Truths.
Gotrabhu-ñāna, change of lineage of the consciousness
Magga-ñāna, burst of Wisdom that we are seeking.
Pacca-vekkhana-ñāna, the post-phala meditation on
magga, phala, and Nirvana.
1. Nāma-Rūpa Pariccheda ñāna
In your own body, and in another’s body, find out and penetrate into the actual
1. The realities are paramattha (ultimate realities).
2. Non-realities exist as sammuti truth. It’s ordinary usage in conventional
terms, like, man, woman, person, "I", a breathing body showing continuity; it
is paññatti (concepts, ideas, terms, etc.).
My body is the manifestation of the 4-Mahā-Bhūtas (Primaries). They are bound
together as one.
Meditate to ferret out the individual essences of:
1. Pathavī - hardness,
2. āpo - coherence,
3. Tejo - heat (and
absence of heat), and
4. Vāyo - motion or
resistance to motion, hardening with air-pressure.
Find out in your body, consisting of from the top of the head down to your toes,
the facts of heat and cold, where cold is the lessening of heat.
Know that the manifestations of heat and cold, its individual essence, has no
form or entity.
Tejo. Heat. Practise finding out heat and cold. It is rūpa (matter), and its
changeability is the essence of matter.
Vāyo. Motion or resistance to motion. Find out in your body, motion, and
resistance to motion. Know that changeability is the essence of matter.
āpo. Find out in your body the growth and the linking together of the 4
Primaries. āpo is coherence, inherence, fluidity. Remember that changeability
is the essence of matter.
Pathavī. All the other 3 Primaries are based on Pathavī, namely, heat, motion
and resistance to motion, coherence and liquidity. Know the individual essences
and the characteristics of hardness and softness, know that it is constantly
Thus in every way, from top to bottom, and sideways left and right, know that
changeability is the essence of matter (rūpa).
Then, along with the 4 Primaries, are the 4 derived qualities or properties, all
arising and disappearing together:
It’s the Octad, all arising together. Add jīvita (psychic life) to the Octad and
we get the nonad. Add the sensitive parts of the organs, which are the fruition
of past karma, namely, depending on past karma. It’s the decad.
There are millions of such decad cells, all with ākāsa (space) in between.
Your whole body, outside and inside, is composed of these cells, of which you
must know their essence severally.
Octad + jīvita = nonad.
visual pasāda (sensitive eye), we have one kind of cell.
hearing pasāda, we have another kind of cell.
smell pasāda, we have another kind of cell.
taste pasāda, another kind of cell.
body pasāda, another kind of cell.
heart pasāda, (hadaya-vatthu), another kind of cell.
So once again in your body, high and low, and sideways, know that changeability
is the essence of matter. They are all changeable essences, a person or
creature, nor "I", nor man, or woman.
Practice regarding the arising of Nāma
Taking heat as your object, 4 kinds of nāma Aggregates arise. One Aggregate
knows, one feels, one notes, and one strives.
With body base, there arises body consciousness. In the feeling of heat, there
is vedanā; there is feeling of different kinds, pleasurable or otherwise, and
you note (saññā).
In the feeling, which is of different kinds, you have to strive continually to
keep it arising: this is sankhāra aggregate.
These 4 aggregates arise together; they are the 4 nāma aggregates.
(NOTE): If there were only one, it would amount to attā, the admission of attā.
There is nothing in the world that exists just by itself singly. There’s no
Along with the 4 nāma aggregates, there arises mind-produced matter. It arises
and disappears; it is transient, which is the essence of matter. Thus we have
one aggregate for Body and 4 aggregates for Mind, making 5 Aggregates.
Everytime you see, remember, recall, note, know nāma-rūpa. Meditate on the fact,
and be mindful of it.
Everytime you smell, meditate similarly.
Everytime you taste, do similarly.
Everytime you touch, do similarly.
Everytime you know, do similarly.
Thus, a meditator meditates on his body and on another’s body, and knows that,
except for the 5-Aggregates, there is no person or being or "I", or man or
The aim is to know reality by severally dissecting its parts.
This is Nāma-Rūpa Pariccheda Wisdom.
In the wink of an eye, in a flash of lightning, during that period called khana,
there’s uppatti (arising), thi (decay) and bin (ceasing).
Life of Nāma
Nāma exists for the 3 small khanas of arising, decay and ceasing. For one unit
of rūpa ceasing, there are 17 units of nāma ceasing.
Rūpa and Nāma are conditioned and therefore cannot be only one unit. The old
gives place to the new.
The new are arising all the time, and it appears as if there’s one continuous
When you are doing Vipassanā Meditation and you don’t achieve Nāma-rūpa
Pariccheda Wisdom, it will be an obstacle to understand the characteristic
marks of anicca, dukkha and anattā.
There are so many rūpas:
1. Basic 4 Mahā-Bhūtas (Primaries) or Dhātus (Elements), arising in the whole
or solid-element pathavī-dhātu
or cohesion āpo-dhātu
or heat-element tejo-dhāto
or motion-element vāyo-dhātu
2. Derived from the 4 Primaries, are the 4:
3. a. Jīvita rūpa that gives life to the body
The above 12 are for the whole body.
Sensitive body (hadaya-vatthu)
Sound rūpa occasionally arises with belly, throat, mouth, tongue, lips.
They lead to the idea of person, "I".
These 18 rūpas make this body, which has no sentience.
"Seeing", knowing visual form, depending on the sensitive eye;
"Hearing", knowing sound, depending on the sensitive ear;
"Smelling", knowing smell, dependent on the sensitive nose.
"Tasting", knowing taste, dependent on the sensitive tongue,
"Touching", knowing touch, dependent on the sensitive body,
"Knowing", dependent on the hadaya-vatthu, or heart base.
These 6 "knowings" are due to the taking of an object.
Understand that nāma and rūpa do not mix; they are separate, and should be thus
meditated on. The 6 "knowings" are nāma, and the 6 doors are rūpa.
Meditate on this intermittently.
There are 10 rūpas on which you do not meditate.
2. Paccayā-parigaha-ñāna, Generators of Matter
2. Citta - Mind
3. Utu - Temperature,
4. āhāra - Nutriment,
Karma means the past good and bad karma, which started with birth (patisandi)
consciousness, and causes the karma-produced rūpa to arise; it is the seed of
Citta, starting after the patisandi consciousness, starting with the first
bhavanga, causes the citta-produced rūpa to arise.
Utu causes both the internal and external body-formations.
āhāra causes the internal and external rūpas to arise.
Arising of 4 Nāma Aggregates
Eye pasāda (sensitive eye) + visual object + light and manasikāra (attention)
cause to arise visual consciousness, and thus the 4 nāma Aggregates arise.
Sensitive ear + sound + medium + manasikāra produce auditory consciousness and
the 4 nāma Aggregates.
Sensitive nose + smell + air + manasikāra produce smell consciousness.
Sensitive tongue, etc., similar.
Sensitive Body, etc., similar.
Mental pasāda + mental base + mental object produce mental consciousness and the
Along with the 4 nāma-Aggregates arises citta-produced matter, making the 5th
Aggregate. So each of the 5 Aggregates arises and ceases.
The knowing of the arisings and ceasings, being cause and effect, is
3. Sama-sana Wisdom
Meditate on the arising and cessation of the 5-Aggregates in the past. Meditate
on each singly and severally, with reference to the anicca, dukkha and anattā
characteristics of existence. They arose because of the 6-Doors.
Similarly for the present arisings and cessations. Similarly for the future
arisings and cessations.
These 5-Aggregates are no good at all. They arise and disappear all the time,
and you can’t depend on them at all.
Each of the following eleven distinctions of these aggregates is no good, and
they appear and disappear similarly.
1. In the past, they arose and disappeared. They have the characteristics of
anicca, dukkha and anattā, and therefore are no good at all.
2. In the future, they will arise and disappear and have the 3 characteristics
of anicca, dukkha and anattā.
3. In the present, the are no good at all. They are arising and disappearing all
the time, having the 3 characteristics of existence.
4. Externally, also the 5-Aggregates of animals, etc. are arising and
disappearing all the time, bearing the 3 characteristics.
5. Internally, also, they are no good, having the 3 characteristics.
6. They can be coarse. All these 5-Aggregates are bad. If there is arising of
dosa, one has to be afraid.
7. They can be refined, and all are bad. They give the idea of getting you merit
and that this will get you to the abodes of the Devas. Thus you are induced,
for instance, to build a monastery. They induce you to made charity (dāna) and
keep the precepts (sīla), promising kāma kusala (merit) and rūpa kusala and
arūpa kusala, when actually these kusalas are anicca, dukkha and anattā. These
5-Aggregates are not dependable at all. They are bad.
8. They can be of the inferior kind, and full of lobha, dosa and moha.
9. They can be of the superior kind, but they are not dependable, replete with
the 3 characteristics of anicca, dukkha, and anattā.
10. They can be of the distant kind. One can visualise them existing far away
but the all exhibit the 3 characteristics, and are no good.
11. They can be of the near kind with the usual 3 characteristics.
From now, we stick to the present, and no more of the past and future. This
applies to this and the remaining stages.
Udaya means arising, and
vaya means cessation.
We meditate on the arising and ceasing of the 5-Aggregates. They arise through
the 6-Doors which are located all over the body. They arise from different
causes, through the sensitive eye, the sensitive ear, sensitive nose, etc., at
different doors, and after arising, they immediately disappear just where they
had arisen at the different localities of the body.
The arising and ceasing shows their anicca quality, meaning not permanent.
As you meditate, the arising and ceasing of the 5-Aggregates become fast. When
fast, you will not see the arising but only the ceasing. Like you see the
crumbling of a house built of the very edge of a river.
You will realise that craving or wanting, anything produces suffering. For
example, you engage a servant. Later, he lets you down and there’s a theft and
you have to go to Court. You come to realise that because you wanted a servant,
you get trouble and suffering.
This craving causes the 5-Grasping Aggregates to arise and the result is
Another example. You want to eat a particular thing. Some one comes and gives
you this particular thing. You eat and get unwell. You see that wanting to eat
that thing is the cause of your trouble, your suffering. You see the cause and
You see that attachment to the 5-Aggregates is bad, because the attachment or
craving causes the arising of the 5-Grasping Aggregates, and thus you realise
that suffering is caused.
From this stage of mental development onwards, you come to realise that
suffering results because of your wanting anything, because of your craving.
You see the dangers of the 5-Aggregates. In the simile of the house, you see the
bank of the river disappearing with the consequent crumbling of the house.
You are in the swim of samsāra. You see decay, old age, death continually
The cause of all this is craving that makes the 5-Grasping Aggregates to arise.
Because you did not know the cause, which is craving, you are experiencing
suffering all the time. You see danger in the arising of the 5-Aggregates.
7. Adhinava - nupassanā-ñāna
Means the faults or troublesome effects of the 5-Aggregates. You see the bad
results. Suppose a person who is addicted to narcotics is continually asking
for money and causes trouble. You see the trouble caused.
Say a man goes to a forest full of fearful things, like snakes and tigers, etc.
You are fearful. Similarly the causes of the arising of the 5-Aggregates make
you fearful. You fear sankhāra, the arising of the 5-Aggregates.
They are full of lobha, dosa and moha. They are the cause of decay, old age and
8. Nibhida - nupassanā-ñāna
You see the bad points of the 5-Aggregates. You see the defects, and you get fed
up with sankhāra. All is dukkha, suffering.
When you have a bad wife, you will hate her and also disgust will arise, etc.
You decide that you must divorce her.
9. Muñcitu Kamyata ñāna
You want to get out of the clutches of the 5-Aggregates. You want release from
You want your release and you must act. You work it out in detail.
There are 40 kinds in the 3 characteristics of
Anicca ... 10
Dukkha ... 25
Anattā ... 5
Total ... 40
As there are 5-Aggregates, this makes 200 Insights in all.
The Aggregates arise by themselves and they cease by themselves. They arise with
their own causes. You are now indifferent to every thing. You are no longer
affected by the good and evil in this world.
Whilst meditating, the sankhāras, the 5-Aggregates disappear.
This feeling of indifference (uppekkha) is fostered by the balance of the mind
or equanimity (tatra majjhatata).
When the Insight of Sankhāruppekhā matures, it changes itself into the insight
of adaptation (anuloma-ñāna).
We are now nearing Magga. Out of anicca, dukkha, anattā, one becomes
predominant, whichever is fitting in the circumstances, but always pertains to
Your wisdom becomes very alert, very strong, very quick.
You have finished with meditation on the 5-Aggregates. Change of lineage
knowledge arises taking Nirvana as object.
It’s the knowledge that sees the freedom from cause and effect.
It sees Nirvana, but not yet the 4-Noble Truths simultaneously.
This is the moment you have been striving for. In a flash of Magga Wisdom, you
comprehend the 4-Noble Truths simultaneously.
Knows that Magga has been achieved.
You are now a Sotāpanna, a Stream winner. You have overcome the first 3 Fetters,
belief in a permanent personality,
clinging to rules and rituals, and
You have 7 more Fetters to overcome. But you can rest on your oars, knowing
there are only 7 more existences for you at a maximum, and you cannot be born
in the lower planes.
This is like the after-taste. You meditate on Magga and Phala and also on
When you reach the stage of Sotāpanna, you know that 3 kilesas have been
You know that 7 more are remaining. You meditate on the remaining kilesas not
As a Sotāpanna, you have the added experience and wisdom that will make it
easier to become a Sakadāgāmī and an Anāgāmī.
Every time you begin at the udaya-vaya-ñāna. You meditate again on the
5-Aggregates, but with higher and better Insight.
But when you come to the stage that had previously been Gotrabhu, it becomes
vodāna. Thereafter the sequence is anuloma, then vodāna, then magga and phala
The next time it is of a Anāgāmī. And lastly you become an Arahat. You have
reached your Goal.