Enumeration of Phenomena

400 B.C. | 124,932 words

*english translation* The first book of the Abhidhamma (Part 3 of the Tipitaka). The Dhammasangani enumerates all the paramattha dhamma (ultimate realities) to be found in the world. According to one such enumeration these amount to: * 52 cetasikas (mental factors), which, arising together in various combination, give rise to any one of... * ......

Chapter XIII - The Group On The Corruptions


[1229] Which are the states that have the attribute of corruption?[1]

The ten bases of corruption, to wit:

lust,                                perplexity,
hate,                              stolidity,
dulness,                         excitement,
conceit,                          unconscientiousness,
speculative opinion,       disregard of blame.

[1230-1237] In this connexion,

What is lust?
. . . hate?
. . . dulness?
. . . conceit?
. . . speculative opinion?
. . . perplexity?
. . . stolidity?
. . . excitement?[2]

Answers as m §§ 1059-1061, 1116-1118, 1156, 1159.

[1238] What is unconscientiousness?

The absence of any feeling of conscientious scruple when scruples ought to be felt; the absence of conscientious scruple at attaining to bad and evil states.[3]

[1239] What is disregard of blame?

The absence of any sense of guilt where a sense of guilt ought to be felt, the absence of a sense of guilt at attaining to bad and evil states.

These are the states which have the attribute of corruption.

[1240] Which are the states that have not the attribute of corruption?

All other states whatever (i.e., all except the afore-named ten), good, bad and indeterminate, whether they relate to the worlds of sense, form or the formless, or to the life that is Unincluded; in other words, the four skandhas, all form also and uncompounded element.

[1241, 1242] Which are the states that are

(a) baneful?

Co-Intoxicant states, good, bad and indeterminate, whether they relate to the worlds of sense, of form or of the formless;[4] in other words, the five skandhas.

(b) harmless?

The Paths that are the Unincluded, and the Fruits of the Paths, and uncompounded element.

[1243, 1243a] Which are the states that are

(a) corrupt?

The three roots of bad (karma), to wit, lust, hate, dulness, as well as the Corruptions united with them, the four skandhas associated with them, and the action, bodily, vocal and mental, springing from them.

(b) not corrupt?

Good and indeterminate states, whether they relate to the worlds of sense, form, or the formless, or to the life that is Unincluded; in other words, the four skandhas; all form also, and uncompounded element.[5]

[1244-1247] Which are the states that are

arrow left  (a) associated with the Corruptions?
  (b) disconnected with the Corruptions?

arrow left  (c) both Corruptions and baneful?
  (d) banefid but not themselves Corruptions?

Answers as in the corresponding pairs in the 'Graspings', §§ 1221-1224.

[1248, 1249] Which are the states that are

(a) both Corruptions and corrupt?

The Corruptions themselves.

(b) corrupt but not themselves Corruptions?

The states which by those ten states are made corrupt, the ten themselves excepted; in other words, the four skandhas.

[1250-1253] Which are the states that are

(a) both Corruptions and associated with Corruptions?

and disregard of blame

taken severally in conjunction with dulness, and dulness in conjunction with each of them.

Lust, also, in conjunction with excitement, and conversely, and so for the remaining eight bases.
Lust, also, in conjunction with unconscientiousness, and conversely, and so for the remaining eight.
Lust, also, in conjunction with disregard of blame, and conversely, and so for the remaining eight.[6]

      (b) associated with Corruptions but not themselves Corruptions?[7]
arrow left  (c) disconnected with Ills but baneful?
  (d) disconnected with Ills and harmless?

Answers to these three questions as in former groups. See §§ 1226-1228, 1171-1173, etc.[8]

Footnotes and references:


On the term kilesa the Cy. is silent. It is true that the word lies as near to the Buddhist believer as 'sin' to the Christian. As a rule, however, Buddhaghosa is too Socratic to accept familiar terms without examination. In this case he has confined his attention to the derivatives.

Incidentally, however — in discussing the meaning of 'good' (above, § 1; Asl. 62) — he makes spiritual health to consist in the absence of kilesa-disease, showing that kilesa was co-extensive with evil or the absence of moral good. Of the derivatives, only sankilittha is made to convey the idea of impurity or foulness (see Childers, s.v. sankileso), bad butter being so termed (Asl. 319).

Elsewhere it is paraphrased as 'possessed of sankileso', while sankilesa (above, §§ 993-995; Asl. 42) is defined in close agreement with the description of sankleca in Bothl. and Roth (qualen, belastigen):

'the meaning is to trouble, to torment',

while the corresponding adjective is described as

'deserving sankilesa by persistently making self the object of one's thoughts ... the term being an equivalent for those things which are the conditions (or objects) of sankilesa'.

Corruption or impurity is, however, I believe, approximately what this group of terms represents to modern Buddhists; nor have I been able to select an English word adequate to render them in what seems to have been their first intention, viz., 'torment' (caused by moral unsoundness).

'Bases' or vatthuni are states so called because the Corruptions dwell (vasanti) in the (human) subject of them as immediate conditions (anantara-paccaya). Asl. 386.


In the answer, vupasamo in the text should be avupasamo.


See §§ 387, 388.


Apariyapanna should, of course, be omitted from' the printed text.


This section is omitted, apparently inadvertently, in the printed text. Cf. the Matika.


It is not very obvious, nor is any explanation volunteered by the Cy., why just the 3rd, 8th, 9th and 10th Bases of Corruption are selected as the constant of two factors in this connexion.


In the answer, supply ye dhamma after Tehi dhammehi.


The First Path witnesses the overcoming of speculative opinion and perplexity, the Third Path disposes of hate, but it requires the Fourth Path to overcome the remaining seven. Asl. 387.

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