Compendium of philosophy, being a translation now made for the first time from the original Pali of the Abhidhammattha-sangaha; online

. (page 14 of 26)
Online LibraryAnuruddhaCompendium of philosophy, being a translation now made for the first time from the original Pali of the Abhidhammattha-sangaha; → online text (page 14 of 26)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

61 {Dhammapada and Satta-Nipdta Translations), it is rendered by
■' work.' — ^Ed.

* These categories may be compared with the earlier less elaborate

144 Of Process-free Consciousness [pt. v

1. Karma reproductive [of an after-life].

2. Karma maintaining [the effects of Class 1].

3. Karma unfavourable [to the effects of Class 1, and
to the working of Class 2].

4. Ka rma destructive [to Classes 1 and 2].

B. With respect to function, there are four kinds of

1. Weighty k a r m a.-^

2. Proximate k a r m a.^

3. Chronic k a r m a.^

4. [All other] outstanding karma.*

C. With respect to time of taking effect there are four
kinds of karma :

1. Karma (the fruit of which is) to be experienced in
this life.

2. Karma (the fruit of which is) to be experienced in
(the next) life.

and incidentally introduced classifications of (a) the P i t a k a s — e.g.
M. iii., Ctila and Maha kamma-vibhanga suttas; {b) the
Milinda—e.g., 46, 108, 134, and Nettipak : 37.— Ed.

^ Garukaij — i.e., of telling effect. The Commentaries instance
e.g., serious crimes.

^Asannarjisa contraction of maranasanna ij — i.e., according
to the Commentaries, action or thought just before death.

^ A c i 1.1 n a k a ij — i.e., habitually repeated k a m m a, repeated either
in act or thought.

* Katatta: in As I. p. 262, where no other kind is distinguished
the synonym given is k a t a k a r a i.i a, ' because done.' — Ed.

Katatta (lit., kat assa+ bha vo, 'the state of having been
done ') is the name applied to residual k a m m a of the present life
which is not of the first three classes, and also to any k a m m a of
anterior lives, which has as yet to work out its effects whenever
favourable opportunities occur, when it becomes aparapariya-
k a m m a, the k a m ma of Class 3 under the next head of classification.
It is the k a m m a held in reserve.

1. Bad karma





K fi m a 1 k a.

2. Good k a r m a





K a m a 1 k a.

3. Good karma





R u p a 1 k a.

4. Good k a r m a





A r u p a 1 k a.

PT. v] Bad Karma 145

3. Karma [the fruit of which is] to be exi)erienced in
some after-life.

4. K a r m a ' which has been.'^

Z). AVith respect to place for working out its effects
there are four kinds of karma:

in the

in the

in the

in the

Under the first of these four heads, and with respect to
the ' door,' bad karma is threefold, to w'it, karma of
act, speech, and thought.

How [may these be described] ?

K a r m a of body, so called from being done commonly
through the ' door ' of the body, considered as the medium ^
of bodily expression, is taking life, taking what is not given,
and inchastity.

Karma of speech, so called from being done commonly
through the ' door ' of speech, considered as the medium
•of vocal expression, is lying, slandering, abusive language,
and idle talk.

Karma of thought, so called from being done commonly
through the [' door ' of the] mind [with or] ^ without overt
■expression, is covetousness, ill-will, and erroneous opinion.

(1) Of the foregoing forms [of bad karm a], taking life,
abusive language and ill-will spring from the root of hate ;

^ Ahosi- kammaij. Cf. Vergil's ' f uit Ilium' . . . {^li,n., II.,
o25) — karma which has lapsed in potential force. — Ed.

^Viiinatti. See Part VI. 'Kay a' (body) here connotes 'act.'

2 The Commentators explain the force of ' a p i ' as showing that

the karma of thought is not always confined to the mind door alone,

but it very often takes effect at ihe other two ' doors,' accompanied by

overt expression.


146 Of ProcesH-free Consciousness [pt. v

inchastity, covetousness, and erroneous opinion/ spring
from the root of greed. The other four come to pass from
[these] two ' roots ' also."

Analyzed with respect to classes of consciousness/ there
are altogether twelve kinds of bad"* karma.

(2) Next, taking good karma, with respect to the
* door,' it also is threefold, to wit, karma of body, proceed-
ing at the ' door ' of the body ; k a r m a of speech, proceed-
ing at the ' door ' of speech ; k a r m a of thought, proceeding
at the ' door ' of mind.

Threefold also with respect to charity (lit., giving), virtue,
and mental culture, it is eightfold with respect to classes
of consciousness. Or again, tenfold taking into account
charity, virtue, mental culture, reverence, service, trans-
ference of merit,' rejoicing in [others'] merit, hearing the
doctrine, teaching the doctrine, and forming correct-

It is these twenty kinds''' that are counted as k a r m a in
K a m a 1 k a.

(3) Good Rupaloka karma is only mental action
(karma of thought). It consists in mental culture and
involves the attaining of ecstasy. It is fivefold, corre-
sponding to the stages of j h an a.

(4) Good A r u p a 1 k a karma is also only mental

^ This, belonging at first sight more properly to the third 'root,'
suggests the proverb of ' the wish (1 o b h a) being father to the
thought' (ditthi).— Ed.

2 At first it seems curious that the third root is passed over. But
the Commentators explain by saying that 'pi' (also) implies the
mclusion of ' moha' (dulness) as a root common to all the ten vices
It is not expressly stated, for the reason that this root of roots does not
serve to distinguish the three classes of kar uaa under consideration,.
one from another.

2 Cittuppadavasena.

* Part I., i^ 2.

s Pattidana. See Childers's Diet., s.v. Patti.. — Ed.

" On these ten, cf. Childers's Diet., s.v. Pun ho. The seventh
( p a 1 1 a n u m o d a n a) is there given as abbhanumodana pufino,.
and rendered as 'acceptance or use of transferred merit.' — Ed.

' I.e., twelve bad and eight good. On the eight, see Part I., § 6.

PT. v] Kamaloka Karma 147

action. It, too, consists in mental culture, and involves
the attaining of ecstasy. It is fourfold, corresponding to
the kinds of [A r u p a 1 o k a] object.

Finally, bad k a r m a, omitting distraction,^ produces
rebirth on the plane of misfortune.

And farther, during a lifetime, all the twelve kinds [of
bad k a r m a] take effect as seven kinds of bad results any-
where in Kamaloka and in E li p a I o k a, according
to circumstances.

Again, good Kamaloka karma produces rebirth
under fortunate conditions in K a m a 1 o k a. And simi-
larly during a lifetime, it produces the great resultants^
[in Kamaloka]. But-' it produces the eight [good]
resultants, unaccompanied by their hetu's, anywhere in
K tl m a 1 k a and in Pi u p a 1 o k a, according to circum-
stances. And further, good [k a r m a] of the highest
class ^ accompanied by its three good 'hetu's,' both gives
rise to rebirth similarly accompanied, and takes effect
during [that] lifetime in sixteen kinds of resultants. Again,
good [k a r m a] of a lower class,^ accompanied by the
three hetu's of good, as well as good karma of the
highest class, accompanied by two*" of these three hetu's,
both give rise to a rebirth attended by those two hetu's,
and also take effect, during that lifetime, in twelve kinds
of resultants, omitting those accompanied by these three
h e t u ' s.'' Lastlj^ good [k a r m a] of a lower class, which
is accompanied by two of these hetu's, both gives rise
only to such rebirth as is not accompanied by any h e t u,
and also takes effect, during that lifetime, in resultants
also unaccompanied.

^ Commentators explain that distrait action is too feeble to effect

2 I.e., the eight named in Part I., j 4.

^ According to the Burmese MSS. the text has 'pan a,' which, in
the J.P.T.S. text is omitted.— Ed.

* Ukkatthaij ; the only occurrence of this term. — Ed.

■'' m a k a r). See previous note.

•^ A 1 b h a and a d o s a.

" Tihetuka-rahitani. The four fi a n a - s a ui p a y u 1 1 a ' s are
now excluded from the foregoing sixteen.

148 Of ProccHH-jree Consciousness [pt. v

§ 9. Mnemonic Note.

Some teachers^ hold that automatic thought

Cannot result in willed or prompted [deed],
Nor that self-willed or prompted thinking aught

That's merely automatic act can breed.
To meet their views : — by twelve and ten, or eight,'

Eeplace the sixteen and the twelve above — ■
Eesults, be it remembered we did state.

[Let each compare and, as he will, approve.]

§ 10. D. 3 and 4.

One who has practised in a minor degree good E ii p a -
loka karma, which consists of the first j h a n a, is
reborn in the heaven of Brahma's retinue ; one who has
practised it in a moderately high degree, in the heaven
of Brahma's ministers ; one who has practised it in a
surpassing degree, in the heaven of the great Brahma's.

Similarly, practice in a minor degree of second and third
j h an a [results in rebirth] among the gods of minor lustre ;
practice in a moderately high degree, among gods of infinite
lustre ; practice in a surpassing degree, among the radiant

Similarly, practice in a minor degree of fourth j h a n a
[results in rebirth] among the gods of minor aura ; in a
moderately high degree, in rebirth among the gods of
unlimited aura ; in a surpassing degree, among the gods
full of steady aura.

Lastly, practice of fifth j h a n a [results in rebirth]
among the gods of the Great Eeward. The same practised

1 The Ceylon Cy. {AhliidhammaWia-Vihliavani) mentions the
teachers of the school of Mahadhammarakkhita Thera of
M o r a V a p i Monastery in Ceylon. Ledi Sadaw names M a h a d a 1 1 a
Thera as the head of this school of thought.

2 Replace 16 and 12 by 12 and 10 respectively and we get 12, 10,
and 8, according to the school of thought in question.

FT. v] Kdvina at Death l^l)

with a view to extirpate lust for consciousness^ [results in
rebirth] in the heaven of the unconscious ; but Never-
returners [practising fifth j h k n a] are reborn- in the Pure

Further, one who has practised good A r li p a 1 o k a
karma is reborn, in corresponding order, in one of the
four A r II p a 1 k a spheres.

§ 11, Mnemonic.

E'en thus our merit, waxing great and for this plane, or

that one bound,
Brings forth results like to itself, in rebirth and the vital


So far for the fourfold [classifying of] k a r m a.

§ 12. lY. Of the Advent of Death.

Four are [the grounds for] the advent of death.-' It
comes through the expiration of the span of life, through
the extinction of k a r m a, through the expiration of both ,
and through destructive karma.

Now to those thus about to die there is present in
consciousness, at the hour of death, by the power of
karma, at one or other of the six ' doors,' according to
circumstance,'* either —

[a) A presentation "^ of such karma from past existence
as is bringing about rebirth ; or

^ Saiin a- vir a gar) — an adverbial phrase meaning, literally, 'till
the lust for consciousness is extirpated.'

2 U p p a j j a n t i — spring into being. Ledi Sadaw would have us to
translate this last clause into ' but in the pure abodes, the Anagami's
alone are reborn,' in order to indicate that, while the pure abodes are
exclusively reserved for those of the Anagami's who practise the
fifth j h a n a, those who practise the lower j h a n a s may be reborn in
the lower planes.

3 Cf. Milinda, 301.— Ed. ^ See Part III., ^< 10.

•"' A b h i m u k h i b h u t a ij, • what has become face to face.' — Ed.

150 Of Process-free Co?isciousness [pt. v

{h) A (sign, or) token of that karma, such as a visible,
or other object, which was got at the time when the
karma was performed and became an instrument there-
in ;^ or

(c) A sign of the destiny which, as their lot in the
existence immediately impending, is by them to be under-

After that, attending to just this object which has fixed
itself [in consciousness], there usually goes on an un-
interrupted continuum " of consciousness, which is either
[morally] pure, or corrupt, according to the karma that
is being matured, and which, in conformity with the
existence that is about to be undergone, tends thither.

Only such karma as is capable of i)roducing rebirth is
able to arrive at ' the door ' [of i3resentation] as a re-
presentation-'^ of itself.

To one who is at the point of death, at the end of his
mental processes, or expiry of his life-continuum, the
death-thought,* or last phase of his present being arises,
and with his decease, ceases. At the end of this cessation,
and just after it, mental action,^ which is called rebirth,
because it consists in a joining together® the past existence
[with the new], arises and is set up in the next existence,"

^ The Commentators instance the shrine where the dying one
worshipped, the tank he had made, the tiowers offered in worship, the
knife with which he murdered, etc.

'■^ C i 1 1 a s a n t a n a I]. On s a n t a n a , which occurs also on p. 161 in
this work, see De la V. Poussin : 'Dogmatique Bouddhiste,' Journal
Asiatique, Sept., Oct., 1902, discussed in J.E.A.S., 1903, pp. 584 f. ;
1904, p. 370.— Ed.

^ Abhinavakaranavasena: lit., 'by way of renewing itself.'
I.e., not of imagining, but of repeated original experience.

* Cuticittai].

5 Manasaij. In Dhs., § 6, described as equivalent to mano and
viiifia n a. — Ed.

" Patisandhi, 'rebirth,' but=lit., uniting (i.e., of lives).

'' ' Past ' and ' next existence ' are both 'bhavantararj' Appar-
ently the Commentators make no allusion to any tradition of an
intermediate state, such as we meet with in more animistic thana-
tologv — Ed.

vv. v] Kdvma in Ixchirth 151

according to circumstances and capacities. This mental
action is engaged upon the object presented as described ;
it has either a [physical] base, or no base ; it is brought
forth by a mental activity ^ which is rooted in sucli craving
as is dormant,^ and is wrapt in such ignorance as is latent \^
it is surrounded by its mental associates, and it becomes
the foregoer, by being a fixed [/'x'u.s],^ of all that is co-
existent with it.

§ 13. Of Eehirth.

In the process of dying consciousness"* apperception pro-
ceeds feebly, and only five moments may be looked for.
Therefore, in the case of death coming when objects are
uctuaUij present^ m the avenues of consciousness, the rebirth-
consciousness and also [a few succeeding moments of]*^ the
life-continuum are then in a state to obtain actual pre-
sentation. And so it comes that, on occasion of rebirth in
K a m a 1 o k a, there is obtained, by way of the six ' doors,'
either a token of karma, or a sign of destiny," as an

^ S a n k b a r e n a j a n i y a m a n a ij . See Appendix : S a n k h il r a.

^ A 11 u s a y a : lit.^ ' that which sleeps contmuously.' See Part VII.

^ Adhitthanabhavena.

■* Maranasannavitbiyar): lit., ' in the process (of thought) at
the time of near death.' Cf. Part IV., § 11. — Ed.

■' The translator's text reads dharantesu, lit., ' while the object
which has entered the avenue of consciousness stands, i.e., lasts.' I
was inclined to read mar antes u, but this cannot be a correct
reading, for marantanaij is required by grammar. — Ed.

" See Introd. Essay on M a r a n a s a n n a - k a m m a, p. 73.

" The sign of destinj-, according to the Ceylon Cy., consists only of
the visible object (ruparammanar) ekameva) laid hold of by the
mind-door (manodvaragahitat)), and is actually present (e k a n -
t a p a c c u p p a n n a ij). Its presentation is compared to a vision in a
dream (v a u n a y a t a n a ij s u p i n a m p a s s a n t a s s a v i y a). But
as the dream-phenomenon is not confined to sight and sight alone, the
sign of destiny, in all probability, consists of any of the six classes of
object. So Ledi Sadaw of Burma contends, on the authority of
the Malicirikd, the great Commentary on the Visuddhi-^nagga.
But our humble opinion is that this dream-like vision is seen by the
mind's eye, and is not laid hold of by the six ' doors,' as the latter also

152 Of Process-free Coiisciousness [pt. v

object either present or past. But the karma itself is
obtained only as an object of past experience, and it is laid
hold of by the ' door ' of mind.

But all the foregoing is concerned with objects of a minor
character {i.e., of sense-experience).

In rebirth only a token of k a r m a, in the shape of a
concept/ becomes an object.

Soo, too, in rebirth in A r u p a 1 o k a, the only form of
object presented is a sign of karma, which is either a
sublime cognition itself, or a concept according to the
classes of rebirth-consciousness.

In the case of rebirth among unconscious beings, only
the vital 'nonad'^ is reincarnated, hence they are called
the materially reborn. Beings reborn into the A r u p a
spheres are called materially-and-mentally reborn.

§ 14. Mnemonic Xote on Death and Birth.

If from th' A r ii p a plane you pass away,

You may be reborn in the selfsame way,

If not in higher formless spheres ; but not

In lower plane will be your lot ;

Or else you may find birth in this our sphere

With threefold * root.'^ From R u p a 1 o k a gone,

Of luckless rebirth you inherit none.

From K a m a - world, if bound to h e t u ' s three.

All rebirths open are to you. But here,

To Kama, others all reborn must be.

So far for the order of re-decease and rebirth.

§ 15. Of the Stream of Becoming.

So to those who have thus got rebirth, the same kind of
consciousness [as attended rebirth], occupied with the same

>• A 1 1 h a - p a ii fi a 1 1 i is here intended. See above, Part III., § 10 ;
below, Part VIII., ^j' 14, 15.

2 See next Part. Uf. also p. 136, n. 2.
^ I.e., the three good ' h e t u ' s.

TT. v] The Strcdtii of Bccoui'iu^ lo.*}

[field of] objects, starting straight away after [the moment
of] rebirth, goes on, in the absence of any jn-uceax of cogni-
tion, in unbroken flux like the stream of a river till the
uprising of death-consciousness. [And this flux of] mind,
because it is a condition of being, is called continuance of
the condition of being.^ At the end, by reason of dying,
it becomes consciousness of re-decease- and then ceases.
After that, rebirth-consciousness and the rest, revolving
according to circumstances, like the wheel of a chariot, go
on and on.

§ 16. Mnemonic.

Birth, life-flux, processes of thought, decease,

Both here and in existence yet to be,

Birth, life again . . . and thus incessantly

Doth this conscious continuum turn round.

But the Enlightened, pondering^ release

From this that passeth ever by, have found, —

Steadfast down the long years in piety,

All bonds of cleaving severed utterly, —

The Path sublime,^ where death and rebirth cease ;

And they, so faring, shall attain to Peace. ^

Thus ends the Fifth Part, in the Compendium of
Philosophy, called the Chapter on the Compendium of
Cognitions not subject to process.

^Bhavanga-santati: lit. , ' the continuity of the factor of being.'
The Commentators, however, explain ' a n g a ' in b h a v a n g a by
karanar), 'a condition,' or 'cause.' See Introcl. Essay, pp. 9, 10.

2 Cuticittari. Cf. p. 150, n. 4.

^ Patisankhaya. Repeatedlj^ contemplating the transiency of
things by p a t i 8 a n k h ii - n a n a. On this insight see Part IX.

* Adhigantva padaij. The Commentators explain adhi-
g a n t V a by m a g g a - p h a 1 a - n a n e n a s a c c h i k a t v il — realizing
by means of the understanding of the path-consciousness and fruition-
consciousness — and explain p a d a ij to mean the s a - u p a d i s e s a -
nibbana. See Pt. V., § 14.

"* S a m a IJ. The Commentators say that by this Avord the a n u p a -
disesa-nibbana is meant.



§ 1. Introductovi).

Analysis of thought and thought's adjuncts
Thus far has set forth class and process all.
Now form^ material must be described,
Enumeration, aspects, origins and groups,
And natural procedure : — these do form
The five divisions of this summary.

§ 2. Of the Kinds of Material Quality}

Material quality is twofold, to wit, the four great
essentials,- and material qualities derived therefrom, the
two making up eleven species.

How [eleven] ?

(1) Essential material qualities — viz., the element^ of

1 'Rupa,' in its generic sense, means 'matter,' and in its specific
sense, ' quality.' But, in popular language, it means • form.'

- M ah ab hii t a ni (bh u = esse). This is nearer the Pali than
our 'elements' — a term reserved for dhatu, below. C/. B. Psij.
xlviii., and on Rupa and its forms, xli.-lxiii., and Book II. — Ed.

2 Dhatu is defined by the Commentators as that which carries its
own characteristic marks or attributes (a 1 1 a n o s a b h a v a ij d h a r e-
t T t i d h a t u). See Appendix : Dhatu.


\"v. vi] Materia/ Qualities 155

extension,^ the element of cohesion,- the element of heat,
the element of motion.-'

(2) Sensitive material (/luditieH — viz., the eye, the ear,
the nose, the tongue, the body,"*

(3) Material qualities of sense-fields — viz., visible form,'
sound, odour, sapids, and the tangible, the last excluding
the element of cohesion, and being held [to lie in the
other] three essentials.®

(4) Material qualities of sex"^ — viz., female sex and
male sex.

^ P a t h a V 1 is derived from ' p a 1 1 h a r a t i ' — ' to spread out or
extend.' Extension to us means occupation in space. Tri-dimensional
extension gives rise to our idea of a solid body. As no two
bodies can occupy the same space at the same time, Buddhists
derive their idea of Jiardness (k a k kh a 1 a 1 1 a - 1 a kk h a n a) from
p a t h a V T, and regard p a t h a v i as a primary quaUty (p a t h a v I
e V a d h a tu).

2 A p 0. The Commentators explain this term to mean that element
which diffuses itself throughout the mass, pervades the whole mass,
and increases the bulk of material bodies, keeping their atoms from
being scattered about, holding and collecting them together.

^ V a y o. The Commentators explain this term to mean the
element which causes a body or bodies to change place (desanta-
ruppatti-hetu-bhavena), or which moves the body, which
vibrates, or oscillates (s a m T r e t i).

* I.e., the dermic skin.

^ R u p a v). Thus we see that visible form in the sense of a certain
coloured surface is only one qualitij out of the twenty-four named in
this section.

® Particles of matter are held together by apo (cohesion), which
cannot be felt by the sense of touch — e.g., when one puts his hand into
cold water, the softness of water felt is not a p o but p a t h a v 1 ; the
cold felt is not a p o, but t e j o ; the pressure felt is not a p o but v a y o.
Hence Buddhists take only the three essentials or primaries to consti-
tute the tangible. From this one can easily see that Buddhists are
not dealing with Thales' water, Anaximenes' air, Herakleitus' fire, or
the Peripatetics' matter, of Greek philosophy.

^Itthattaij, purisattaij; in Abhidh. Pit., itthin-
driyar),etc. — Ed. The generic name is simply ' b h a v a ' (state),
abbreviated from itthibhava+pumbhava = itthipumbhava.
Ledi Sadaw explains the 'bh a v a' as that state by which masculinity
and femininity can be distinguished.

156 Of flatter [pt. vi

(5) ]\Iaterial qualities of base — viz., the heart-base.^

(6) Material qnalitij of life — viz., vital force.

(7) Material quality of nutrition — viz., edible food.-

AU these, amounting to eighteen^ species of material
quality, are also otherwise distinguished :

(a) according to their differential characteristics;^

{h) according to their salient marks ;^

(r) as determined by k a r m a and environment ;®

{d) as mutable ■,'^

{e) as object fit for contemplation.^

(8) Material qualiti/ of limitation — viz., the element of

^ I.e., of mental life. On this common feature in Eastern and
Western psycho-physiology, see above, Part III., i^ 12. In the
FisMc?cZ7m72a^,9'a (6) precedes (5). The Z)7^s. omits (5;. — Ed. According
to later commentators its omission is not accidental. See above,
p. 128, n. 1, and Appendix : Hadayavatthu.

2 A h a r o is sustenance, physical or mental. Here physical sus-
tenance is intended. S., ii. 11 ; B. Psy., 30, ?i. 1. — Ed.

3 Eighteen, by counting (3) as only four, the tangible having been
enumerated under (1). See Mnemonic ; also n. 6, p. 155.

* Sabhavarupai].- a t tan o sabhavena siddhaij.

^ S a 1 a k k h a n a r i\ p a ij : a n i c c a d T h i 1 a k k h a n e h i s a h i -

''Nipphannarupaij: kammadihi paccayehi nip-
phaditaij. The conditioning environments are citta, utu, and

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 14 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26

Online LibraryAnuruddhaCompendium of philosophy, being a translation now made for the first time from the original Pali of the Abhidhammattha-sangaha; → online text (page 14 of 26)