Thursday, 31 March 2011

Unsatisfactoriness Related to the Individual Unsatisfactoriness Related to the Individual


The main aim of Buddhism is to eradicate the individual suffering. The way to over come social suffering are to be given as it is related to cause the individual unsatisfactoriness. Here, the nature of individual satisfactoriness, as outlined by Buddhism, well be explored first it.

      Buddhism is not the first religious philosophy to study about the unsatisfactoriness faced by humanity. The contemporary religious milieu of the Buddha was full with different ideas related to human unsatisfactoriness. Different religions at that time explained the nature of suffering, it causes, consequences and different remedies to get rid of suffering. Therefore, religious philosophical teaching in the society of the Buddha maintains various theories on suffering and happiness in human.

      The åcelakassapasutta of SN represents four such major views on the origin of suffering. 
1.  ßayaM kataM dukkhaM – the unsatisfactoriness is made by oneself.
2.  ParaM kataM dukkhaM – the unsatisfactoriness is made by others
3.  ßayaM kataM paraM kataJca dukkhaM – the unsatisfactoriness is made by oneself and others
4.  åsayaM kataM aparaM kataM dukkhaM adhiccasamuppannaM – the unsatisfactoriness is made by neither made by oneself nor by others, it is spontaneous
None of these four directly represents the Buddhist view. According to Buddhism none of them explained the cause of unsatisfactoriness as it is. When the Buddha rejected these four as they are incorrect åcelakassapa questioned the Buddha

åcelakassapa - Then venerable sir! Is there no unsatisfactoriness?
The Buddha - O Kassapa! There is unsatisfactoriness.
åcelaKassapa - Don’t you see it?
The Buddha – I know suffering, I see suffering ( dukkhaM ahaM jAnAmi, dukkhaM ahaM passAmi)

      The Buddha’s reply shows that the Buddhist interpretation of causes of suffering is different from above given. Those religious believe who accepted above four theories did not observe causally conditioned nature of unsatisfactoriness. The Buddhist interpretation of origin of suffering depends on causality (idappaccayatA). It is given as the real nature of the existence (dhammaniyAmatA). The view on the origin of suffering, in thought other than Buddhism emerged from two sources.

1. Creation theory (nimmANavAda).
2. The theory of spontaneous origin (ahetuppaccayavAda).

Both of them are not recognized as two causes in Buddhism, instead Buddhism advocates causality. According to the Buddhist view, there can be one major case and some subordinate cause for the origin of each phenomenon. For example: seed is the main (hetu), causes of tree. Soil, water, sunrays etc are subordinate causes (paccaya). For the fire, fuel is the major cause (hetu). Wind, environment etc are subordinate causes. The birth and the cessation of samsaric life depends on causes and conditions the TithAyatanasutta of SN presents this philosophy with the following stanzas:

TaNhA janeti purisaM cittamasaa vidhAvati,
satto samasAramApAdI kammam tassa parAyaNaM.
=Craving causes the person; his mind runs here and there,
The being entered into the circle of birth and death, his action and his result are his help.

      This explanation shows that unsatisfactoriness is neither caused by external authority nor spontaneously. But it is the causally condition. By understanding the function of causes and effects, one can clear to way to end the unsatisfactoriness. For that the reality of causality is to be realized avoiding extremist views, in åcelakassapasutta of SN.

Ete te ubho ante anupagamma majjhena tathAgato dhammaM deseti. avijjA paccayA saMkhArA, saMkhAra paccayA viJJAnaM evametassa kevalassa dukkhakkhandhassa samudayo hoti

 =Without following these two extremes the Well-gone one preaches the doctrine in middle. Mental functions are caused by ignorance, consciousness is caused by mental formation … etc thus occurs the origin of whole aggregated of suffering.

      According to Buddhist explanation there are twelve causes the generation samsaric unsatisfactoriness.

1. åvijjA (Ignorance): Ignorance here means not knowing the Four Noble Truths. Not knowing the Four Noble Truth means the ignorance on origin faction and future of the existence of human being. In the eradication of defilements ignorant ceases last.
2. ßaMkhAra (Mental formation): Due to ignorance, three forms of formations are born. They are basically mind-based. The three formations are:
i.       kAya saMkhAra – bodily formation.
ii.      vacI saMkhAra – verbal formation
iii.     citta saMkhAra – mental formation.
         The verbal formations are eradicated at the second trance. Bodily formations are eradicated in the fourth trance. In the nine trance, the eradication of mental formations take place.
3. ViJJAna (Consciousness): This is caused by formations and consciousness is six-fold:
i.       cakkhuviJJAna eye-consciousness
ii.      sotaviJJAna ear-consciousness
iii.     ghAnaviJJAna nose-consciousenss
iv.     jIvhAviJJAna tongue-consciousness
v.      kAyaviJJAna body-consciousness
vi.     manoviJJAna mind-consciousness
4. ñAmarUpa (Name and form): Here the nAma means the five meantal qualities:
i.       phassa contact
ii.      vedana feeling
iii.     saJJA perception
iv.     cetana volition
v.      manasikAra one pointed-ness
Here rUpa means four great elements:
i.       paThavi solidity
ii.      Apo liquidity
iii.     Tejo temperature
iv.     vayo motion
5. ßalAyatana (Six faculties): The following aspects are the six physical faculties.
i.       cakkhu eye
ii.      sota ear
iii.     ghAna nose
iv.     jIvhA tongue
v.      kAya body
vi.     mana mind
6. Phassa (Contact): this again becomes six-fold as:
i.       cakkhusamphassa – contact of eye
ii.      sotasamphassa – contact of ear
iii.     ghAnasamphassa – contact of nose
iv.     jIvhAsampassa – contact of tongue
v.      kAyasamphassa – contact of body
vi.     manasmphassa – contact of mind
7. VedanA (Feeling): They are also six-fold as:
i.       cakkhusamphassavedanA feeling born from contact of eye
ii.      sotasampahasaavedanA feeling born from contact of ear
iii.     ghAnasamphassavedanA feeling born from contact of nose
iv.     jIvhAsamphassavedanA feeling born from contact of tongue
v.      kAyasamphassavedanA feeling born from contact of body
vi.     manasamphassavedanA feeling born from contact of mind
8.   TaNhA (Craving): this is the psychological aspect of attachment that leads to grasping.
9. üpAdAna (Grasping): Due to craving grasping is born. It is three fold.
i.       diTThi upAdAna grasping of view
ii.      attavAda upAdAna grasping of self view
iii.     sIlabbatA upAdAna grasping of austerity
10.       Bhava (Becoming): Becoming is three fold as:
i.       kAma bhava becoming in sensual sphere
ii.      rUpa bhava becoming in form sphere
iii.     arUpa bhava becoming in formless sphere
11. JAti (Birth): Becoming causes birth. It generates six faculties and five aggregates.
12. JarAmaraNa (Decay and Death): Birth is followed by decay and death. It takes place throughout the life slowly but steadily.

The saMsAra is thus caused by causes and conditions not by outer causes or without causes, but it is causally-conditioned.
PaticcasamuppannaM kho upvAna dukkhaM vuttaM mayA
                                                                    (üpavAnasutta, SN II)
=O üpavAna! I have said unsatisfactoriness causally-conditioned.

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