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Aṅguttara Nikāya - The Numerical Discourses

4: The Book of the Fours

4. Understood

Thus have I heard. On one occasion the Blessed One was dwelling among the Vajjis at Bhaṇḍagāma. There the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus: "Bhikkhus!"
"Venerable sir!" those bhikkhus replied. The Blessed One said this: [n.618] What follows is included in the Mahāparinibbāna Sutta, DN16.25.

2"Bhikkhus, it is because of not understanding and penetrating four things that you and I have roamed and wandered for such a long stretch of time.[n.619] Dīghamaddhānaṁ sandhāvitaṁ saṁsaritaṁ. The "long stretch" of wandering is saṁsāra, derived from the verb saṁsarati, seen here in the past participle saṁsaritaṁ. Mp glosses dīghamaddhānaṁ with cirakālaṁ ("a long time") and explains sandhāvitaṁ as "roamed by going from one state of existence to another" (bhavato bhavaṁ gamanavasena sandhāvitaṁ). What four.

"It is, bhikkhus, because of not understanding and penetrating noble virtuous behavior, noble concentration, noble wisdom, and noble liberation that you and I have roamed and wandered for such a long stretch of time.

"Noble virtuous behavior has been understood and penetrated. Noble concentration has been understood and penetrated. Noble wisdom has been understood and penetrated. Noble liberation has been understood and penetrated. Craving for existence has been cut off; the conduit to existence has been destroyed;[n.620] Bhavanetti. Mp: "The rope of existence (bhavarajju) is a name for craving. Just as oxen are bound by a rope around the neck, so this leads beings from one existence to another. Therefore it is called the conduit to existence." now there is no more renewed existence."


3This is what the Blessed One said. Having said this, the Fortunate One, the Teacher, further said this:

4"Virtuous behavior, concentration, wisdom,
and unsurpassed liberation:
these things the illustrious Gotama
understood by himself.

5"Having directly known these things,
the Buddha taught the Dhamma to the bhikkhus.
The Teacher, the end-maker of suffering,
the One with Vision, has attained nibbāna."[n.621] Cakkhumā parinibbuto. Mp: "He attained nibbāna by the extinction of defilements. This was the first nibbāna, which occurred for him in the vicinity of the bodhi tree. But afterward, between the twin sal trees (at Kusinārāā) he attained nibbāna by the nibbāna element without residue remaining."

1Evaṁ me sutaṁ—​   ekaṁ samayaṁ bhagavā vajjīsu viharati bhaṇḍagāme. Tatra kho bhagavā bhikkhū āmantesi:  "bhikkhavo"ti.

"Bhadante"ti te bhikkhū bhagavato paccassosuṁ. Bhagavā etadavoca: 

2"Catunnaṁ, bhikkhave, dhammānaṁ ananubodhā appaṭivedhā evamidaṁ dīghamaddhānaṁ sandhāvitaṁ saṁsaritaṁ mamañceva tumhākañca. Katamesaṁ catunnaṁ.

Ariyassa, bhikkhave, sīlassa ananubodhā appaṭivedhā evamidaṁ dīghamaddhānaṁ sandhāvitaṁ saṁsaritaṁ mamañceva tumhākañca. Ariyassa, bhikkhave, samādhissa ananubodhā appaṭivedhā evamidaṁ dīghamaddhānaṁ sandhāvitaṁ saṁsaritaṁ mamañceva tumhākañca.

Ariyāya, bhikkhave, paññāya ananubodhā appaṭivedhā evamidaṁ dīghamaddhānaṁ sandhāvitaṁ saṁsaritaṁ mamañceva tumhākañca. Ariyāya, bhikkhave, vimuttiyā ananubodhā appaṭivedhā evamidaṁ dīghamaddhānaṁ sandhāvitaṁ saṁsaritaṁ mamañceva tumhākañca. Tayidaṁ, bhikkhave, ariyaṁ sīlaṁ anubuddhaṁ paṭividdhaṁ, ariyo samādhi anubuddho paṭividdho, ariyā paññā anubuddhā paṭividdhā, ariyā vimutti anubuddhā paṭividdhā, ucchinnā bhavataṇhā, khīṇā bhavanetti, natthi dāni punabbhavo"ti.


3Idamavoca bhagavā. Idaṁ vatvāna sugato athāparaṁ etadavoca satthā: 

4"Sīlaṁ samādhi paññā ca,
vimutti ca anuttarā;
Anubuddhā ime dhammā,
gotamena yasassinā.

5Iti buddho abhiññāya,
dhammamakkhāsi bhikkhunaṁ;
Dukkhassantakaro satthā,
cakkhumā parinibbuto"ti.

Paṭhamaṁ.