Mara Martins









I'm wondering something related to the "atr levels of enlightenment." To any of those who have attained the 7th level of buddhist enlightenment according to atr, are you free from suffering?

For example, if you arrive later at home today and find your pet/children/wife/husband dead, will you suffer or not? Maybe Soh Wei Yu can reply. 



Mara Martins


As a side not, I’ve read in the ebook Awakening to Reality, written by Soh Wei Yu, the fruition of the atr’s 7th level of enlightenment. For example, it says:

“freedom from any sense of self”

And then it says

“high degree of attenuation of craving, anger, fears, sorrow, attachments, or any afflictive emotions”

High degree of attenuation of attachments? Who has attachments? If you have realized anatta, how do you still have attachments? Who is the “no-self” who has attachments? Attachments are still delusion, it implies that there is someone who clings to something.

Sorrow or afflictive emotions? Isn’t sorrow just a sensation? Why is it labeled as sorrow? Sorrow implies suffering, and a sufferer, a self.

There are more examples, but these should suffice for now.

Looking forward to get clarified on this. Thanks!


Simon Wagner

Mara Martins actually suffering or attachment does not imply a self. the imputation that any phenomena must belong to or be experienced by a self, IS the dream


Neil Kaiser

Simon Wagner I would second this. It's not that suffering does not exist but you see it for what it is, and for that you cannot identify with it.


Soh Wei Yu


Mara Martins on your OP: it depends on your level of attainment. I did write that as you practice, post-anatta, your afflictive emotions will get attenuated, even possibly quite early on. And then, when you reach fetter model Arahantship, or 8th bhumi bodhisattva, all afflictions are permanently ended.

Kyle Dixon just shared this days ago:

I don’t like to talk about myself really but doctrinally you would be referring to the “taming” ('dul ba, damya), which is as my teacher says “the process of obtaining the mental and emotional resilience on a deep level. When one has tamed one's afflictions, even if they are still present in the mind stream, one has reached the level of patience (bzod pa, kṣānti).” This occurs at the 3rd bhūmi, and is characterized by pretty much a total absence of negative emotions like sadness or anger, but with the ability to still feel immense gratitude, joy and happiness in proper contexts.

In my past I would sometimes form healthy attachments to some women and have relationships with them, this is really no issue.

The view of Vajrayāna and ati in general is actually defined as “attachment without clinging” this means we allow our senses to come into contact with their respective objects of sensation without accepting or rejecting. This means that even in the act of sex, the sensations are arising and you are fully with the sensations. If you aren’t in equipoise then you are fully experiencing the sensation, and you can play with how that sensation lacks a subject and object if you understand how that principle is applied in the view. That is the meaning of training in pure vision. Everything is the mandala of the deity, in ati for example, this means everything is innately the mandala of vidyā.


Also he wrote previously, some quotations in AtR guide:

"...The anatta definitely severed many emotional afflictions, for the most part I don't have negative emotions anymore. And either the anatta or the strict shamatha training has resulted in stable shamatha where thoughts have little effect and are diminished by the force of clarity. I'm also able to control them, stopping them for any amount of desired time etc. But I understand that isn't what is important. Can I fully open to whatever arises I would say yes. I understand that every instance of experience is fully appearing to itself as the radiance of clarity, yet timelessly disjointed and unsubstantiated.." - Kyle Dixon, 2013

Someone had the misunderstanding that Kyle Dixon is a “follower” of Soh and John Tan. Soh clarified,

“Kyle Dixon is not a student or follower of mine or John Tan in any way. His realizations happened prior to his encountering us, about eight years ago. He is a dzogchen practitioner and I am not. The fact that our insights coincide is simply a coincidence. There are some others who have had insights triggered by my writings, but Kyle is not one of them. Furthermore, I do not have “students”. I also do not claim “full enlightenment”.” Kyle has written a very nice account back in 2012 of his own realization: Advice from Kyle Dixon -

(Update: Kyle Dixon learns Dzogchen from Chogyal Namkhai Norbu and since around 2012 has started learning from Dzogchen teacher Acarya Malcolm Smith. Had the good karma to meet Malcolm and Kyle in California in 2019 [completely coincidental because Malcolm does not live there and just happened to be visiting]. Malcolm said Kyle is the first to totally get his view. Also, in 2020 John Tan and I started attending Malcolm’s Dzogchen teachings which we think is very clear:, . Although I would add, Kyle did say he had learnt things from John Tan and I too. But I would say it is not some sort of formal student-teacher relation. I have learnt many things from Kyle too.)

“The conditions for this subtle identification are not undone until anatta is realized.

Anatta realization is like a massive release of prolonged tension, this is how John put it once at least. Like a tight fist, that has been tight for lifetimes, is suddenly relaxed. There is a great deal of power in the event. The nature of this realization is not often described in traditional settings, I have seen Traga Rinpoche discuss it. Jñāna is very bright and beautiful. That brightness is traditionally the “force” that “burns” the kleśas.

The reservoir of traces and karmic imprints is suddenly purged by this wonderful, violent brightness. After this occurs negative emotions are subdued and for the most part do not manifest anymore. Although this is contingent upon the length of time one maintains that equipoise.” - Kyle Dixon, 2019

“Prajñā “burns” karma, only when in awakened equipoise. Regular meditation does not.” - Kyle Dixon, 2021

“On hand I have this:

The Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra states:

Affecting the mind, kleśa and vāsanā can be destroyed only by a wisdom [prajñā], a certain form of omniscience [sarvajñatā].

There is a lesser form of prajñā that is able to eradicate the kleśas, and then a superior form of prajñā that destroys vāsanās. Only buddhas possess the superior form and have therefore dispelled both the kleśas and vāsanās.

The Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra continues:

There is no difference between the different destructions of the conflicting emotions [kleśaprahāna]. However, the Tathāgatas, arhats and samyaksaṃbuddhas have entirely and definitively cut all the conflicting emotions [kleśa] and the traces that result from them [vāsanānusaṃdhi]. The śrāvakas and pratyekabuddhas themselves have not yet definitively cut vāsanānusaṃdhi... these vāsanās are not really kleśas. After having cut the kleśas, the śrāvakas and pratyekabuddhas still retain a small part of them: semblances of love (attachment) [rāga], hate (aversion) [dveṣa] and ignorance [moha] still function in their body [kāya], speech [vāc] and mind [manas]: this is what is called vāsanānusaṃdhi. In foolish worldly people [bālapṛthagjana], the vāsanās call forth disadvantages [anartha], whereas among the śrāvakas and pratyekabuddhas they do not. The Buddhas do not have these vāsanānusaṃdhi.” - Kyle Dixon, 2021


Soh Wei Yu



Other quotes from AtR guide:

“Though anatta is a seal [Soh: i.e. a truth that is always already so, pertaining to the nature of mind/experience], it also requires one to arise the insight to feel liberated. When a practitioner realizes the anatta nature of manifestation, at that moment without the sense of observer, there is no negative emotions. There is only vivid sensation of all the arising as presence. When you are angry, it is a split. When you realized its anatta nature, there is just vivid clarity of all the bodily sensations. Even when there is an arising thought of something bad, it dissolves with no involvement in the content [Soh: i.e. mental contents like stories, imagination and conceptualization along with emotional involvement]. To be angry, a 'someone' must come into the content. When there is no involvement of the extra agent, there is only recoiling and self liberations. One should differentiate arising thought from the active involvement of the content a practitioner that realizes anatta is only involved fully in the vivid presence of the action, phenomena but not getting lost in content.” - John Tan, 2009

Also see J Krishnamurti speaking on awareness without a background observer leads to never being angry again:

“Not creating an idea of a self frees us completely from anger. You cannot have anger unless there is a self. There is no boundless and omniscient self somewhere in the sky that created the whole universe, and there is no tangible and limited self that inhabits this bag of skin. All of reality is simply infinite

dharmas that arise and disappear in accord with the laws of karma. There is not one thing standing against another.” - Zen Master John Daido Loori

Krishnamurti on Awareness and the Observer (Extract from Talk 7, Saanen 1976)


Krishnamurti on Awareness and the Observer (Extract from Talk 7, Saanen 1976)

Krishnamurti on Awareness and the Observer (Extract from Talk 7, Saanen 1976)

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Soh Wei Yu


John Tan basically said before, if you have stable momentum [in equipoise], your radiance bright and stable, you will be able to remain calm and stable in spacious openness in the midst of adversities and loss. The momentum in equipoise must be strong, free from all elaborations, no I nor identity, only natural radiance, pellucid, pure and radiance bright. Then 'things' don't affect you due to no sense of identity.

Are you also familiar with the fetter model four paths, because this is important to understand in the context of this topic:

It is important to understand that attaining anatta and insight into dependent origination initially is akin to Buddha's fetter model stream entry (not the Daniel or MCTB system). In Mahayana system, the Mahayana stream entry is the first bhumi out of 10 or 13 or 16. In the Sravaka system, stream entry is followed by sakadagami, anagami and arahant.

Also here is a description of the 3rd stage of the sravaka stages of awakening -- anagami -- one stage before fetter model fourth path [arahantship]:

Excerpt from the AtR guide:

Now, back to discussing MN73: No anagamis or arahants are said to enjoy sensual pleasures, unlike stream enterer and once returners.

An anagami and arahant would have no desires or clinging to a relationship either. An anagami simply asked whether his wifes want to leave and he could arrange it, and didn’t have issues either way. Didn’t felt sad or perturbed that they are leaving either. I read that some anagamis remain as lay persons (in the suttas) as they need to take care of parents and so on.

As someone wrote, “As for lifestyle changes upon abandoning the five fetters, this is what the non-returner Ugga has to say: “I had four young wives. I then went to them and said: ‘Sisters, I have undertaken the training rules with celibacy as the fifth. If you want, you can enjoy wealth right here and do merits, or go back to your own family circle, or inform me if you want me to give you over to another man.’ My eldest wife then said to me: ‘Young sir, give me to such and such a man.’ I sent for that man, and with my left hand I took my wife, with my right hand I took the ceremonial vase, and I gave her to that man. But even while giving away my young wife, I don’t recall that any alteration took place in my mind. This is the third astounding and amazing quality found in me.”


Soh Wei Yu


"Who has attachments? ", "Sorrow implies suffering, and a sufferer, a self."

It is important to understand this:

Difference between "neo advaita nihilism" and Anatta

“[3:29 PM, 6/25/2020] John Tan: Thought of how to explain the difference in anatta and advaita nihilism.

[3:40 PM, 6/25/2020] John Tan: When a person in ignorance, why is he so blinded? If there is no I, shouldn't him be already free?

Sentient being: if there is no I in ignorance, then you are therefore free.

Anatta: There is no I in ignorance, you are precisely THAT ignorance, therefore fully and entirely blinded.

What anatta insight is telling us is the "I" and "ignorance" are the same phenomenon. This also tells us that even when in ignorant, there is complete and effortless non-dual experience, anatta is a seal.

[2:52 PM, 6/27/2020] Soh Wei Yu: The Beauty of Virtue

Thought is movement between “what is” and “what should be.” Thought is the time to cover that space, and as long as there is division between this and that psychologically, the movement is the time of thought. So thought is time as movement. Is there time as movement, as thought, when there is only observation of “what is”? That is, not observation as the observer and the observed, but only observation without the movement of going beyond “what is.” It is very important for the mind to understand this, because thought can create most marvelous images of what is sacred and holy, which all religions have done. All religions are based on thought. All religions are the organization of thought, in belief, in dogma, in rituals. So unless there is complete understanding of thought as time and movement, the mind cannot possibly go beyond itself.

We are trained, educated, drilled to change “what is” into “what should be,” the ideal, and that takes time. That whole movement of thought to cover the space between “what is” and “what should be” is the time to change “what is” into “what should be”—but the observer is the observed, therefore there is nothing to change, there is only “what is.” The observer doesn’t know what to do with “what is,” therefore he tries various methods to change “what is,” controls “what is,” tries to suppress “what is.” But the observer is the observed: the “what is” is the observer. Anger, jealousy, are also the observer; there isn’t jealousy separate from the observer—both are one. When there is no movement as thought in time to change “what is,” when thought perceives that there is no possibility of changing “what is,” then that which is—“what is”—ceases entirely, because the observer is the observed.

Go into this very deeply and you will see for yourself. It is really quite simple. If I dislike someone, the dislike is not different from the “me” or the “you.” The entity that dislikes is dislike itself; it is not separate. And when thought says, “I must get over my dislike,” then it is movement in time to get over that which actually is, which is created by thought. So the observer—the entity—and the thing called “dislike” are the same. Therefore there is complete immobility. It is not the immobility of being static, it is complete motionlessness and therefore complete silence. So time as movement, time as thought achieving a result, has come totally to an end, and therefore action is instantaneous. So the mind has laid the foundation and is free from disorder; and therefore there is the flowering and the beauty of virtue. In that foundation is the basis of relationship between you and another. In that relationship there is no activity of image; there is only relationship, not one image adjusting itself to the other image. There is only “what is” and not the changing of “what is.” The changing of “what is,” or transforming of “what is,” is the movement of thought in time.

When you have come to that point, the mind and the brain cells also become totally still. The brain which holds memories, experience, knowledge, can and must function in the field of the known. But now that mind, that brain, is free from the activity of time and thought. Then the mind is completely still. All this takes place without effort. All this must take place without any sense of discipline, control, which belong to disorder.

You know, what we are saying is totally different from what the gurus, the “masters,” the Zen philosophers say, because in this there is no authority, there is no following another. If you follow somebody, you are not only destroying yourself but also the other. A religious mind has no authority whatsoever. But it has intelligence and it applies that intelligence. In the world of action there is the authority of the scientist, the doctor, the man who teaches you how to drive, but otherwise there is no authority, there is no guru.

So, if you have gone as deeply as that, then the mind has established order in relationship, and understands the whole complex disorder of our daily lives. Out of the comprehension of that disorder, out of the awareness of it, in which there is no choice, comes the beauty of virtue, which is not cultivated, which is not brought about by thought. That virtue is love, order, and if the mind has established that with deep roots, it is immovable, unchangeable. And then you can inquire into the whole movement of time. Then the mind is completely still. There is no observer, there is no experiencer, there is no thinker.

There are various forms of sensory and extrasensory perception. Clairvoyance, healing, all kinds of things take place, but they are all secondary, and a mind that is really concerned with the discovery of what is truth, what is sacred, will never touch them.

The mind then is free to observe. Then there is that which man has sought through centuries, the unnameable, the timeless. And there is no verbal expression of it. The image that is created by thought completely and utterly ceases because there is no entity that wants to express it in words. Your mind can only discover it, or come upon it, when you have this strange thing called love, compassion, not only for your neighbor, but for the animals, the trees, for everything.

Then such a mind itself becomes sacred.

~ J Krishnamurti, 'This Light in Oneself: True Meditation'

[2:53 PM, 6/27/2020] Soh Wei Yu: reminds me of what you said 'you are the ignorance'

[6:52 AM, 6/28/2020] John Tan: Yes”

p.s. John Tan also said years ago,

Difference between "neo advaita nihilism" and Anatta


Difference between "neo advaita nihilism" and Anatta

Difference between "neo advaita nihilism" and Anatta

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Soh Wei Yu


"After this insight, one must also be clear of the way of anatta and the path of practice. Many wrongly conclude that because there is no-self, there is nothing to do and nothing to practice. This is precisely using "self view" to understand "anatta" despite having the insight.

It does not mean because there is no-self, there is nothing to practice; rather it is because there is no self, there is only ignorance and the chain of afflicted activities. Practice therefore is about overcoming ignorance and these chain of afflictive activities. There is no agent but there is attention. Therefore practice is about wisdom, vipassana, mindfulness and concentration. If there is no mastery over these practices, there is no liberation. So one should not bullshit and psycho ourselves into the wrong path of no-practice and waste the invaluable insight of anatta. T

hat said, there is the passive mode of practice of choiceless awareness, but one should not misunderstand it as the "default way" and such practice can hardly be considered "mastery" of anything, much less liberation."

In 2013, Thusness said, "Anapanasati is good. After your insight [into anatta], master a form of technique that can bring you to that the state of anatta without going through a thought process." and on choiceless awareness Thusness further commented, "Nothing wrong with choice. Only problem is choice + awareness. It is that subtle thought, the thought that misapprehend (Soh: falsely imputes/fabricates) the additional "agent"."

“A state of freedom is always a natural state, that is a state of mind free from self/Self. You should familiarize yourself with the taste first. Like doing breathing meditation until there is no-self and left with the inhaling and exhaling... then understand what is meant by releasing.”

Labels: Anatta, John Tan, Karmic Tendencies |


Soh Wei Yu



John Tan:

The logic that since there is no agency, hence no choice to be made is no different from "no sufferer, therefore no suffering".

This is not anatta insight.

What is seen through in anatta is the mistaken view that the conventional structure of "subject action object" represents reality when it is not. Action does not require an agent to initiate it. It is language that creates the confusion that nouns are required to set verbs into motion.

Therefore the action of choosing continues albeit no chooser.

"Mere suffering exists, no sufferer is found;

The deeds are, but no doer of the deeds is there;

Nibbāna is, but not the man that enters it;

The path is, but no traveler on it is seen."

[continued in link]





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Soh Wei Yu


"Mere suffering is, not any sufferer is found

The deeds exist, but no performer of the deeds:

Nibbana is, but not the man that enters it,

The path is, but no wanderer is to be seen."

No doer of the deeds is found,

No one who ever reaps their fruits,

Empty phenomena roll on,

This view alone is right and true.

No god, no Brahma, may be called,

The maker of this wheel of life,

Empty phenomena roll on,

Dependent on conditions all." Visuddhimagga XIX.

No Self, No Doer, Conditionality


No Self, No Doer, Conditionality

No Self, No Doer, Conditionality

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Soh Wei Yu


"Action does not require an agent to initiate it."

Something I wrote recently:

No nouns are necessary to initiate verbs

Xabir = Soh

User avatar

level 1


· 9 hr. ago

Everything isn’t made of awareness, it quite literally is awareness itself. In your direct experience there isn’t anything inside looking out at something. the very thing that you presently think is the “seen” is the ongoing activity of the “seer” or awareness.

3level 2


· just now

I like your answer. Also, I would like to add, awareness is none other than the ongoing activity. It is not the case that awareness is an unchanging substance modulating as everything. 'Awareness' is just like a word like 'weather', a mere name denoting the ongoing dynamic activities of raining wetting sun shining wind blowing lightning strike and so on and on. 'Awareness' has no intrinsic existence of its own than moment to moment manifestation, even if at that moment it is just a mere sense of formless Existence, that too is another 'foreground' non-dual manifestation and not an unchanging background.

Just like there is no lightning besides flash (lightning is flashing -- lightning is just another name for flash and is not the agent behind flash), no wind besides blowing, no water besides flowing, no nouns or agents are needed to initiate verbs. There never was an agent, a seer, or even a seeing, besides colors, never an agent, a hearer, or even a hearing, besides sound. Anatta.

Some excerpts from the 2nd most famous Buddhist masters (right after the Dalai Lama) of our time, the Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh :

Excerpts from

some other quotations which Thusness/PasserBy liked from the book --"When we say I know the wind is blowing, we don't think that there is something blowing something else. "Wind' goes with 'blowing'. If there is no blowing, there is no wind. It is the same with knowing. Mind is the knower; the knower is mind. We are talking about knowing in relation to the wind. 'To know' is to know something. Knowing is inseparable from the wind. Wind and knowing are one. We can say, 'Wind,' and that is enough. The presence of wind indicates the presence of knowing, and the presence of the action of blowing'.""..The most universal verb is the verb 'to be'': I am, you are, the mountain is, a river is. The verb 'to be' does not express the dynamic living state of the universe. To express that we must say 'become.' These two verbs can also be used as nouns: 'being", "becoming". But being what? Becoming what? 'Becoming' means 'evolving ceaselessly', and is as universal as the verb "to be." It is not possible to express the "being" of a phenomenon and its "becoming" as if the two were independent. In the case of wind, blowing is the being and the becoming....""In any phenomena, whether psychological, physiological, or physical, there is dynamic movement, life. We can say that this movement, this life, is the universal manifestation, the most commonly recognized action of knowing. We must not regard 'knowing' as something from the outside which comes to breathe life into the universe. It is the life of the universe itself. The dance and the dancer are one."


Comments by Thusness/PasserBy: " a verb, as action, there can be no concept, only experience. Non-dual anatta (no-self) is the experience of subject/Object as verb, as action. There is no mind, only mental activities... ...Source as the passing phenomena... and how non-dual appearance is understood from Dependent Origination perspective."


Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh:"When we say it's raining, we mean that raining is taking place. You don't need someone up above to perform the raining. It's not that there is the rain, and there is the one who causes the rain to fall. In fact, when you say the rain is falling, it's very funny, because if it weren't falling, it wouldn't be rain. In our way of speaking, we're used to having a subject and a verb. That's why we need the word "it" when we say, "it rains." "It" is the subject, the one who makes the rain possible. But, looking deeply, we don't need a "rainer," we just need the rain. Raining and the rain are the same. The formations of birds and the birds are the same -- there's no "self," no boss involved. There's a mental formation called vitarka, "initial thought."

When we use the verb "to think" in English, we need a subject of the verb: I think, you think, he thinks. But, really, you don't need a subject for a thought to be produced. Thinking without a thinker -- it's absolutely possible. To think is to think about something. To perceive is to perceive something. The perceiver and the perceived object that is perceived are one.When Descartes said, "I think, therefore I am," his point was that if I think, there must be an "I" for thinking to be possible. When he made the declaration "I think," he believed that he could demonstrate that the "I" exists. We have the strong habit or believing in a self. But, observing very deeply, we can see that a thought does not need a thinker to be possible. There is no thinker behind the thinking -- there is just the thinking; that's enough. Now, if Mr. Descartes were here, we might ask him, "Monsieur Descartes, you say, 'You think, therefore you are.' But what are you? You are your thinking. Thinking -- that's enough. Thinking manifests without the need of a self behind it."Thinking without a thinker. Feeling without a feeler. What is our anger without our 'self'? This is the object of our meditation. All the fifty-one mental formations take place and manifest without a self behind them arranging for this to appear, and then for that to appear. Our mind consciousness is in the habit of basing itself on the idea of self, on manas.

But we can meditate to be more aware of our store consciousness, where we keep the seeds of all those mental formations that are not currently manifesting in our mind. When we meditate, we practice looking deeply in order to bring light and clarity into our way of seeing things. When the vision of no-self is obtained, our delusion is removed. This is what we call transformation. In the Buddhist tradition, transformation is possible with deep understanding. The moment the vision of no-self is there, manas, the elusive notion of 'I am,' disintegrates, and we find ourselves enjoying, in this very moment, freedom and happiness."


Labels: Anatta |

No nouns are necessary to initiate verbs


No nouns are necessary to initiate verbs

No nouns are necessary to initiate verbs

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Soh Wei Yu


This is also good:

Phagguna Sutta: To Phagguna

Also see: Flawed Mode of Enquiry

SN 12.12

PTS: S ii 13

CDB i 541

Phagguna Sutta: To Phagguna

translated from the Pali by

Nyanaponika Thera

© 2006–2012

Alternate translation: Thanissaro

"There are, O monks, four nutriments for the sustenance of beings born, and for the support of beings seeking birth. What are the four? Edible food, coarse and fine; secondly, sense-impression; thirdly, volitional thought; fourthly, consciousness."

After these words, the venerable Moliya-Phagguna addressed the Exalted One as follows:

"Who, O Lord, consumes[1] the nutriment consciousness?"

"The question is not correct," said the Exalted One. "I do not say that 'he consumes.'[2] If I had said so, then the question 'Who consumes?' would be appropriate. But since I did not speak thus, the correct way to ask the question will be: 'For what is the nutriment consciousness (the condition)?'[3] And to that the correct reply is: 'The nutriment consciousness[4] is a condition for the future arising of a renewed existence;[5] when that has come into being, there is (also) the sixfold sense-base; and conditioned by the sixfold sense-base is sense-impression.'"[6]

"Who, O Lord, has a sense-impression?"

"The question is not correct," said the Exalted One.

"I do not say that 'he has a sense-impression.' Had I said so, then the question 'Who has a sense-impression?' would be appropriate. But since I did not speak thus, the correct way to ask the question will be 'What is the condition of sense-impression?' And to that the correct reply is: 'The sixfold sense-base is a condition of sense-impression, and sense-impression is the condition of feeling.'"

"Who, O Lord, feels?"

"The question is not correct," said the Exalted One. "I do not say that 'he feels.' Had I said so, then the question 'Who feels?' would be appropriate. But since I did not speak thus, the correct way to ask the question will be 'What is the condition of feeling?' And to that the correct reply is: 'sense-impression is the condition of feeling; and feeling is the condition of craving.'"

"Who, O Lord, craves?"

"The question is not correct," said the Exalted One. "I do not say that 'he craves.' Had I said so, then the question 'Who craves?' would be appropriate. But since I did not speak thus, the correct way to ask the question will be 'What is the condition of craving?' And to that the correct reply is: 'Feeling is the condition of craving, and craving is the condition of clinging.'"

"Who, O Lord, clings?"

"The question is not correct," said the Exalted One, "I do not say that 'he clings.' Had I said so, then the question 'Who clings?' would be appropriate. But since I did not speak thus, the correct way to ask the question will be 'What is the condition of clinging?' And to that the correct reply is: 'Craving is the condition of clinging; and clinging is the condition of the process of becoming.' Such is the origin of this entire mass of suffering.[7]

"Through the complete fading away and cessation of even these six bases of sense-impression, sense-impression ceases;[8] through the cessation of sense-impression, feeling ceases; through the cessation of feeling, craving ceases; through the cessation of craving, clinging ceases; through the cessation of clinging, the process of becoming ceases; through the cessation of the process of becoming, birth ceases; through the cessation of birth, old age, death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief and despair cease. Such is the cessation of this entire mass of suffering."

Phagguna Sutta: To Phagguna


Phagguna Sutta: To Phagguna

Phagguna Sutta: To Phagguna

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Justin Forrest Miles

Sadness is an inescapable human experience and display of our Buddha nature.


Soh Wei Yu


Justin Forrest Miles It is inescapable for unenlightened beings, but for totally liberated beings like Buddha and the arahants (but not necessarily newly awakened like the stream enterers and first bhumi whose afflictions are attenuated but not completely ended), they are totally free.

Salla Sutta: The Arrow

translated from the Pali by

John D. Ireland

© 1994

Alternate translation: Thanissaro

"Unindicated and unknown is the length of life of those subject to death. Life is difficult and brief and bound up with suffering. There is no means by which those who are born will not die. Having reached old age, there is death. This is the natural course for a living being. With ripe fruits there is the constant danger that they will fall. In the same way, for those born and subject to death, there is always the fear of dying. Just as the pots made by a potter all end by being broken, so death is (the breaking up) of life.

"The young and old, the foolish and the wise, all are stopped short by the power of death, all finally end in death. Of those overcome by death and passing to another world, a father cannot hold back his son, nor relatives a relation. See! While the relatives are looking on and weeping, one by one each mortal is led away like an ox to slaughter.

"In this manner the world is afflicted by death and decay. But the wise do not grieve, having realized the nature of the world. You do not know the path by which they came or departed. Not seeing either end you lament in vain. If any benefit is gained by lamenting, the wise would do it. Only a fool would harm himself. Yet through weeping and sorrowing the mind does not become calm, but still more suffering is produced, the body is harmed and one becomes lean and pale, one merely hurts oneself. One cannot protect a departed one (peta) by that means. To grieve is in vain.

"By not abandoning sorrow a being simply undergoes more suffering. Bewailing the dead he comes under the sway of sorrow. See other men faring according to their deeds! Hence beings tremble here with fear when they come into the power of death. Whatever they imagine, it (turns out) quite different from that. This is the sort of disappointment that exists. Look at the nature of the world! If a man lives for a hundred years, or even more, finally, he is separated from his circle of relatives and gives up his life in the end. Therefore, having listened to the arahant,[1] one should give up lamenting. Seeing a dead body, one should know, "He will not be met by me again." As the fire in a burning house is extinguished with water, so a wise, discriminating, learned and sensible man should quickly drive away the sorrow that arises, as the wind (blows off) a piece of cotton. He who seeks happiness should withdraw the arrow: his own lamentations, longings and grief.

"With the arrow withdrawn, unattached, he would attain to peace of mind; and when all sorrow has been transcended he is sorrow-free and has realized Nibbana.


Soh Wei Yu


For example, Ananda cried at the thought of Buddha passing into Parinibbana. At that time he was only a stream enterer. However, all the arahant disciples of Buddha did not cry at all. They have transcended sorrow.


Justin Forrest Miles

I hear you and I read the teachings, I just don't know a fully actualized human being who is or should be free from sadness. Its an indicator of human heartedness and not a flaw or weakness.


Justin Forrest Miles

The Buddha was correct about the things he studied and knew, in particular the nature of self, others and objective reality. The things he didn't study or know, he didnt know. I also question the benefit of a world full of Buddhas who don't get sad.


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