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Aṅguttara Nikāya - The Numerical Discourses

5: The Book of the Fives

28. Five-Factored

1"Bhikkhus, I will teach you the development of noble five-factored right concentration.[n.995] Since the concentration to be explained below is primarily the four jhānas and, probably, the concentration of insight, Mp does not take the word ariya here to refer to the noble paths and fruits but as meaning "far away from the defilements abandoned by way of suppression (vikkhambhanavasena pahīnakilesehi ārakā ṭhitassa)." In the commentaries, ariya is sometimes derived from āraka. While the etymology is playful, it is likely that this samādhi belongs to the preparatory practice for reaching the paths and fruits, not to the paths and fruits themselves. Listen and attend closely. I will speak."


"Yes, Bhante," those bhikkhus replied. The Blessed One said this:

2"And what, bhikkhus, is the development of noble five-factored right concentration?

(1) "Here, secluded from sensual pleasures, secluded from unwholesome states, a bhikkhu enters and dwells in the first jhāna, which consists of rapture and pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by thought and examination. He makes the rapture and happiness born of seclusion drench, steep, fill, and pervade this body, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the rapture and happiness born of seclusion. Just as a skillful bath man or a bath man's apprentice might heap bath powder in a metal basin and, sprinkling it gradually with water, would knead it until the moisture wets his ball of bath powder, soaks it, and pervades it inside and out, yet the ball itself does not ooze; so too, the bhikkhu makes the rapture and happiness born of seclusion drench, steep, fill, and pervade this body, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the rapture and happiness born of seclusion. This is the first development of noble five-factored right concentration.

3(2) "Again, with the subsiding of thought and examination, a bhikkhu enters and dwells in the second jhāna, which has internal placidity and unification of mind and consists of rapture and pleasure born of concentration, without thought and examination. He makes the rapture and happiness born of concentration drench, steep, fill, and pervade this body, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the rapture and happiness born of concentration. Just as there might be a lake whose waters welled up from below with no inflow from east, west, north, or south, and the lake would not be replenished from time to time by showers of rain, then the cool fount of water welling up in the lake would make the cool water drench, steep, fill, and pervade the lake, so that there would be no part of the whole lake that is not pervaded by cool water; so too, the bhikkhu makes the rapture and happiness born of concentration drench, steep, fill, and pervade this body, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the rapture and happiness born of concentration. This is the second development of noble five-factored right concentration.

4(3) "Again, with the fading away as well of rapture, a bhikkhu dwells equanimous and, mindful and clearly comprehending, he experiences pleasure with the body; he enters and dwells in the third jhāna of which the noble ones declare: ‘He is equanimous, mindful, one who dwells happily.’ He makes the happiness divested of rapture drench, steep, fill, and pervade this body, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the happiness divested of rapture. Just as, in a pond of blue or red or white lotuses, some lotuses that are born and grow in the water might thrive immersed in the water without rising out of it, and cool water would drench, steep, fill, and pervade them to their tips and their roots, so that there would be no part of those lotuses that would not be pervaded by cool water; so too, the bhikkhu makes the happiness divested of rapture drench, steep, fill, and pervade this body, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the happiness divested of rapture. This is the third development of noble five-factored right concentration.

5(4) "Again, with the abandoning of pleasure and pain, and with the previous passing away of joy and dejection, a bhikkhu enters and dwells in the fourth jhāna, neither painful nor pleasant, which has purification of mindfulness by equanimity. He sits pervading this body with a pure bright mind, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the pure bright mind. Just as a man might be sitting covered from the head down with a white cloth, so that there would be no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the white cloth; so too, the bhikkhu sits pervading this body with a pure bright mind, so that there is no part of his whole body that is not pervaded by the pure bright mind. This is the fourth development of noble five-factored right concentration.

6(5) "Again, a bhikkhu has grasped well the object of reviewing,[n.996] Paccavekkhaṇanimittaṁ. Mp identifies this as reviewing knowledge (paccavekkhaṇañāṇameva), apparently referring to the knowledge that reviews the path and fruition attainments. However, since this use of the word paccavekkhaṇa seems peculiar to the commentaries, I think it more likely that paccavekkhaṇanimitta here means the object being examined by insight. attended to it well, sustained it well, and penetrated it well with wisdom. Just as one person might look upon another—as one standing might look upon one sitting down, or one sitting down might look upon one lying down—so too, a bhikkhu has grasped well the object of reviewing, attended to it well, sustained it well, and penetrated it well with wisdom. This is the fifth development of noble five-factored right concentration.


7"When, bhikkhus, noble five-factored right concentration has been developed and cultivated in this way, then, there being a suitable basis, he is capable of realizing any state realizable by direct knowledge toward which he might incline his mind.[n.997] See AN3.101, n. 562.

8"Suppose a water jug full of water has been set out on a stand, the jug being full of water right up to the brim so that crows could drink from it. If a strong man would tip it in any direction, would water come out?"

"Yes, Bhante."


"So too, bhikkhus, when noble five-factored right concentration has been developed and cultivated in this way, then, there being a suitable basis, he is capable of realizing any state realizable by direct knowledge toward which he might incline his mind.

9"Suppose on level ground there was a four-sided pond, contained by an embankment, full of water right up to the brim so that crows could drink from it. If a strong man were to remove the embankment on any side, would water come out?"

"Yes, Bhante."


"So too, bhikkhus, when noble five-factored right concentration has been developed and cultivated in this way, then, there being a suitable basis, he is capable of realizing any state realizable by direct knowledge toward which he might incline his mind.


10"Suppose on even ground at a crossroads a chariot was standing harnessed to thoroughbreds, with a goad ready at hand, so that a skillful trainer, the charioteer, could mount it, and taking the reins in his left hand and the goad in his right, might drive out and return wherever and whenever he likes. So too, bhikkhus, when noble five-factored right concentration has been developed and cultivated in this way, then, there being a suitable basis, he is capable of realizing any state realizable by direct knowledge toward which he might incline his mind.


11"If he wishes: ‘May I wield the various kinds of psychic potency: having been one, may I become many … may I exercise mastery with the body as far as the brahmā world,’ he is capable of realizing it, there being a suitable basis.

12"If he wishes: ‘May I, with the divine ear element, which is purified and surpasses the human, hear both kinds of sounds, the divine and human, those that are far as well as near,’ he is capable of realizing it, there being a suitable basis.


13"If he wishes: ‘May I understand the minds of other beings and persons, having encompassed them with my own mind. May I understand … an unliberated mind as unliberated,’ he is capable of realizing it, there being a suitable basis.


14"If he wishes: ‘May I recollect my manifold past abodes … with their aspects and details,’ he is capable of realizing it, there being a suitable basis.

15"If he wishes: ‘May I, with the divine eye, which is purified and surpasses the human, see beings passing away and being reborn … and understand how beings fare in accordance with their kamma,’ he is capable of realizing it, there being a suitable basis.


16"If he wishes: ‘May I, with the destruction of the taints, in this very life realize for myself with direct knowledge the taintless liberation of mind, liberation by wisdom, and having entered upon it, may I dwell in it,’ he is capable of realizing it, there being a suitable basis."

1"Ariyassa, bhikkhave, pañcaṅgikassa sammāsamādhissa bhāvanaṁ desessāmi. Taṁ suṇātha, sādhukaṁ manasi karotha, bhāsissāmī"ti.


"Evaṁ, bhante"ti kho te bhikkhū bhagavato paccassosuṁ. Bhagavā etadavoca: 

2"Katamā ca, bhikkhave, ariyassa pañcaṅgikassa sammāsamādhissa bhāvanā?

Idha, bhikkhave, bhikkhu vivicceva kāmehi … pe … paṭhamaṁ jhānaṁ upasampajja viharati. So imameva kāyaṁ vivekajena pītisukhena abhisandeti parisandeti paripūreti parippharati; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa vivekajena pītisukhena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, dakkho nhāpako vā nhāpakantevāsī vā kaṁsathāle nhānīyacuṇṇāni ākiritvā udakena paripphosakaṁ paripphosakaṁ sanneyya. Sāyaṁ nhānīyapiṇḍi snehānugatā snehaparetā santarabāhirā phuṭā snehena, na ca paggharinī. Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu imameva kāyaṁ vivekajena pītisukhena abhisandeti parisandeti paripūreti parippharati; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa vivekajena pītisukhena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Ariyassa, bhikkhave, pañcaṅgikassa sammāsamādhissa ayaṁ paṭhamā bhāvanā. (1)

3Puna caparaṁ, bhikkhave, bhikkhu vitakkavicārānaṁ vūpasamā … pe … dutiyaṁ jhānaṁ upasampajja viharati. So imameva kāyaṁ samādhijena pītisukhena abhisandeti parisandeti paripūreti parippharati; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa samādhijena pītisukhena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, udakarahado gambhīro ubbhidodako. Tassa nevassa puratthimāya disāya udakassa āyamukhaṁ, na pacchimāya disāya udakassa āyamukhaṁ, na uttarāya disāya udakassa āyamukhaṁ, na dakkhiṇāya disāya udakassa āyamukhaṁ, devo ca kālena kālaṁ sammā dhāraṁ nānuppaveccheyya. Atha kho tamhāva udakarahadā sītā vāridhārā ubbhijjitvā tameva udakarahadaṁ sītena vārinā abhisandeyya parisandeyya paripūreyya paripphareyya; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato udakarahadassa sītena vārinā apphuṭaṁ assa. Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu imameva kāyaṁ samādhijena pītisukhena abhisandeti parisandeti paripūreti parippharati; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa samādhijena pītisukhena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Ariyassa, bhikkhave, pañcaṅgikassa sammāsamādhissa ayaṁ dutiyā bhāvanā. (2)

4Puna caparaṁ, bhikkhave, bhikkhu pītiyā ca virāgā … pe … tatiyaṁ jhānaṁ upasampajja viharati. So imameva kāyaṁ nippītikena sukhena abhisandeti parisandeti paripūreti parippharati; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa nippītikena sukhena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, uppaliniyaṁ vā paduminiyaṁ vā puṇḍarīkiniyaṁ vā appekaccāni uppalāni vā padumāni vā puṇḍarīkāni vā udake jātāni udake saṁvaḍḍhāni udakānuggatāni anto nimuggaposīni. Tāni yāva caggā yāva ca mūlā sītena vārinā abhisannāni parisannāni paripūrāni paripphuṭāni; nāssa kiñci sabbāvataṁ uppalānaṁ vā padumānaṁ vā puṇḍarīkānaṁ vā sītena vārinā apphuṭaṁ assa. Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu imameva kāyaṁ nippītikena sukhena abhisandeti parisandeti paripūreti parippharati; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa nippītikena sukhena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Ariyassa, bhikkhave, pañcaṅgikassa sammāsamādhissa ayaṁ tatiyā bhāvanā. (3)

5Puna caparaṁ, bhikkhave, bhikkhu sukhassa ca pahānā … pe … catutthaṁ jhānaṁ upasampajja viharati. So imameva kāyaṁ parisuddhena cetasā pariyodātena pharitvā nisinno hoti; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa parisuddhena cetasā pariyodātena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, puriso odātena vatthena sasīsaṁ pārupitvā nisinno assa; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa odātena vatthena apphuṭaṁ assa. Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu imameva kāyaṁ parisuddhena cetasā pariyodātena pharitvā nisinno hoti; nāssa kiñci sabbāvato kāyassa parisuddhena cetasā pariyodātena apphuṭaṁ hoti. Ariyassa, bhikkhave, pañcaṅgikassa sammāsamādhissa ayaṁ catutthā bhāvanā. (4)

6Puna caparaṁ, bhikkhave, bhikkhuno paccavekkhaṇānimittaṁ suggahitaṁ hoti sumanasikataṁ sūpadhāritaṁ suppaṭividdhaṁ paññāya. Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, aññova aññaṁ paccavekkheyya, ṭhito vā nisinnaṁ paccavekkheyya, nisinno vā nipannaṁ paccavekkheyya. Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhuno paccavekkhaṇānimittaṁ suggahitaṁ hoti sumanasikataṁ sūpadhāritaṁ suppaṭividdhaṁ paññāya. Ariyassa, bhikkhave, pañcaṅgikassa sammāsamādhissa ayaṁ pañcamā bhāvanā. (5)


7Evaṁ bhāvite kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu ariye pañcaṅgike sammāsamādhimhi evaṁ bahulīkate yassa yassa abhiññāsacchikaraṇīyassa dhammassa cittaṁ abhininnāmeti abhiññāsacchikiriyāya, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.

8Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, udakamaṇiko ādhāre ṭhapito pūro udakassa samatittiko kākapeyyo. Tamenaṁ balavā puriso yato yato āvajjeyya, āgaccheyya udakan"ti?

"Evaṁ, bhante".


Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu evaṁ bhāvite ariye pañcaṅgike sammāsamādhimhi evaṁ bahulīkate yassa yassa abhiññāsacchikaraṇīyassa dhammassa cittaṁ abhininnāmeti abhiññāsacchikiriyāya, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.

9Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, same bhūmibhāge pokkharaṇī caturaṁsā ālibaddhā pūrā udakassa samatittikā kākapeyyā. Tamenaṁ balavā puriso yato yato āliṁ muñceyya, āgaccheyya udakan"ti?

"Evaṁ, bhante".


"Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu evaṁ bhāvite ariye pañcaṅgike sammāsamādhimhi evaṁ bahulīkate yassa yassa abhiññāsacchikaraṇīyassa dhammassa … pe … sati sati āyatane.


10Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, subhūmiyaṁ catumahāpathe ājaññaratho yutto assa ṭhito odhastapatodo. Tamenaṁ dakkho yoggācariyo assadammasārathi abhiruhitvā vāmena hatthena rasmiyo gahetvā dakkhiṇena hatthena patodaṁ gahetvā yenicchakaṁ yadicchakaṁ sāreyyapi paccāsāreyyapi. Evamevaṁ kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu evaṁ bhāvite ariye pañcaṅgike sammāsamādhimhi evaṁ bahulīkate yassa yassa abhiññāsacchikaraṇīyassa dhammassa cittaṁ abhininnāmeti abhiññāsacchikiriyāya, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.


11So sace ākaṅkhati:  ‘anekavihitaṁ iddhividhaṁ paccanubhaveyyaṁ – ekopi hutvā bahudhā assaṁ … pe … yāva brahmalokāpi kāyena vasaṁ vatteyyan’ti, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.

12So sace ākaṅkhati:  ‘dibbāya sotadhātuyā visuddhāya atikkantamānusikāya ubho sadde suṇeyyaṁ – dibbe ca mānuse ca ye dūre santike cā’ti, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.


13So sace ākaṅkhati:  ‘parasattānaṁ parapuggalānaṁ cetasā ceto paricca pajāneyyaṁ – sarāgaṁ vā cittaṁ sarāgaṁ cittanti pajāneyyaṁ, vītarāgaṁ vā cittaṁ vītarāgaṁ cittanti pajāneyyaṁ, sadosaṁ vā cittaṁ … vītadosaṁ vā cittaṁ … samohaṁ vā cittaṁ … vītamohaṁ vā cittaṁ … saṅkhittaṁ vā cittaṁ … vikkhittaṁ vā cittaṁ … mahaggataṁ vā cittaṁ … amahaggataṁ vā cittaṁ … sauttaraṁ vā cittaṁ … anuttaraṁ vā cittaṁ … samāhitaṁ vā cittaṁ … asamāhitaṁ vā cittaṁ … vimuttaṁ vā cittaṁ … avimuttaṁ vā cittaṁ avimuttaṁ cittanti pajāneyyan’ti, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.


14So sace ākaṅkhati:  ‘anekavihitaṁ pubbenivāsaṁ anussareyyaṁ, seyyathidaṁ – ekampi jātiṁ, dvepi jātiyo … pe … iti sākāraṁ sauddesaṁ anekavihitaṁ pubbenivāsaṁ anussareyyan’ti, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.

15So sace ākaṅkhati:  ‘dibbena cakkhunā visuddhena atikkantamānusakena … pe … yathākammūpage satte pajāneyyan’ti, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane.


16So sace ākaṅkhati:  ‘āsavānaṁ khayā anāsavaṁ cetovimuttiṁ paññāvimuttiṁ diṭṭheva dhamme sayaṁ abhiññā sacchikatvā upasampajja vihareyyan’ti, tatra tatreva sakkhibhabbataṁ pāpuṇāti sati sati āyatane"ti.

Aṭṭhamaṁ.