The Vipassana Dipani

The Manual of Insight

by Mahathera Ledi Sayadaw | 1915 | 21,831 words

The Vipassana-Dipani The Manual of Insight Or The Exposition Of Insight Honor to the Buddha By Mahathera Ledi Sayadaw, Aggamahapandita, D.Litt. Translated into English by Sayadaw U Nyana, Patamagyaw of Masoeyein Monastery Mandalay. Edited by The English Editorial Board...

Of The Mark Of III

Briefly speaking, the marks of impermanence in Viparinama and Annathabhava may also be called the Mark of Ill, for they are to be feared by the wise in Samsara, the evolution of life. Why are they to be feared by the wise? Because, in the world, the dangers of decay and death are the dangers, most to be feared. Viparinama is nothing but momentary decay and death; it is the road to death, and to Vinapatana (the dispersion of life into different spheres). All creatures remain alive without removing to another existence only because they are sustained by various methods of preservation. Viparinama is also to be feared on account of the disadvantages, which may fall on ourselves. Acaya, Upacaya and Santati, which are the features of Annathabhava, may also bring many disadvantages. They may establish in the physical body many kinds of disease and ailments. They may establish in the mental continuum many kinds of afflictions (Kilesa), many kinds of hallucination, and many other disadvantages. Every material phenomenon possesses these two marks of impermanence; and also every mental phenomenon pertaining to Kama-loka Rupa-loka and Arupa-loka has the same two marks of Impermanence. Therefore the existences, or the bodies (comprising the mentals and materials) of men, Devas, and Brahmas are all subject to Ill. The two marks of impermanence being always present there are approximately three different marks of Ill, to wit: Dukkhadukkhata, Sankharadukkhata, and Viparinamadukkhata.

Dukkhadukkhata means both bodily (kayika) and mental (cetasika) pains. Sankhara-dukkhata is the state of things (i.e. material and mental phenomena) which exists only if they are always determined, conditioned, and maintained with a great deal of exertion in every existence. The existences or the bodies (khandhas or the sum total of a being) of Brahmas have a great amount of Sankhárá dukkha. Hardly one out of a hundred, who has abandoned all sensual pleasures, renounced the world, and practiced the "Stations" without regard to his own life, hereafter attains the existence of a Brahma. Though people know that such existence is a very good thing, they do not venture to practice them, for they take them to be very hard, difficult and pain giving. When Jhana Dhammas and supernormal intellections are attained, they must be maintained with great care and trouble, for if not, they are liable to recession in a moment upon the most trifling occasion.

Viparinamadukkhata is the state of destruction, or the state of death after conception, if circumstances are favorable to the same at any time, day or hour. The existences, or the bodies, of men, Devas and Brahmas are the real Ills, since they are severally subject to the said three marks of Ill.

Speaking broadly, there are eleven marks of Ill:

  1. Jati-dukkha: Ill of birth.
  2. Jara-dukkha: Ill of decay.
  3. Marana-dukkha: Ill of death.
  4. Soka-dukkha: Ill of sorrow.
  5. Parideva-dukkha: Ill of lamentation.
  6. Kayika-dukkha: Bodily ill.
  7. Cetasika-dukkha: Mental ill.
  8. Upayasa-dukkha: Ill of despair.
  9. Apiyasampayoga-dukkha: Ill due to association with enemies.
  10. Piyavippayoga-dukkha: Ill due to separation from loved ones.
  11. Icchavighata-dukkha: Ill due to non-fulfilment of wishes.

Of these, Jati means birth or reproduction. It is of three kinds, to wit:- Kilesajati: birth of defilements, Kammajati: birth of actions, and Vipakajati: birth of effects.

Of these three, Kilesajati is the birth or the reproduction of defilements such as, greed, hate, dullness, error, conceit, and so forth.

Vipakajati is the birth or reproduction of different kinds of diseases, different kinds of ailments, and different kinds of painful feelings in the body, or the reproduction of mean and low existence such as those of birds and animals, and so forth. Among the Kilesajatis, greed is very fierce and violent. It will rise at any time it finds favorable circumstance, like fire fed with gunpowder. When it rises it can with difficulty be suppressed by any means whatever; it will develop in volumes in an instant. Hence, it is a real "Ill," since it is very much to be feared by all Ariyas. The like should be understood in connection with hate, dullness, and so forth, which ethically are one thousand and five hundred in number. Just as a hill which is the abode of very poisonous serpents is feared and no one dares to approach it, so also the existences of men, Devas and Brahmas are feared; and no Arjya dare approach them with the views: "Myself" and "My body," for they are the birth-places of the said defilements. Therefore they are real "Ills" that are to be feared.

Of the Kammajati, immoral actions of body, speech, and thought are the developments of the defilements. Therefore they are equally as fierce as the defilements. Hence this Kammajati is also a real "Ill" to be feared by all Ariyas. Just as the villages where thieves and robbers take up their quarters are feared, and good people do not venture to approach them, so also the existences of men, Devas and Brahmas are feared, and no Ariya dare approach them with such views as "Myself" and "My body," for they are the birth-places of the said Kammajati.

Of the Vipakajati, owing to the dreadfulness of Kilesajati and Kammajati, Vipakajati the rebirth into the planes of misery is likewise always a terrible thing in the revolution of existences.

Therefore the existences of men, and so forth, to which the Vipakajati together with the Kilesajati and the Kamajati are joined, are real "Ill." The moral actions and the fortunate realms furnish food for the defilements, fuel for the flames of the defilements, so that the birth of moral actions and the birth of results there from, are all obtainable in the Kilesajati. So much for the Jatidukkha.

Concerning the Jaradukkha and Maranadukkha: these are the momentary decays and deaths which follow a being from the moment of conception, and are at all times ready to cause him to fall in decay, death, or unfortunate realms whenever opportunities for the same occur. They also obtain in connection with Viparinamadukkha; and since they dog the steps of all living beings in every existence from the moment of conception, the existences of men, Devas and Brahmas are real "Ill". So much for the Jaradukkha and Maranadukkha.

Sokadukkha, Paridevadukkha, Kayikadukkha, Cetasikadukkha, and Upayasadukkha, always follow the existences of men and Devas, ready to arise whenever an opportunity occurs. The realms of the Niraya and the Peta worlds are the realms of sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief and despair.

So much for the five kinds of Dukkha.

To come into union with persons, creatures, things, objects with which one does not wish to unite or does not wish even to see, is Apiyasampayoga Dukkha.

Separation from persons, creatures, things and objects which one always wishes to meet or be united with, from which one never wishes to be parted in life or by death -- this is Piyavippayogadukkha.

To strive hard, but all in vain, to obtain anything is Icchavighatadukkha.

These "Ills" or Dukkhas are very numerous and very evident, and are also frequently met with in the world. Hence the existences, or the bodies of men, Devas and Brahmas are real "Ills." Of these eleven varieties of Dukkha, birth, decay and death, are the most important. So much for the Mark of "Ill."

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