Aŋguttara Nikāya


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Aŋguttara Nikāya
IX. Navaka Nipāta
V. Pañcāla Vagga

Sutta 42

Pañcāla Suttaɱ aka Sambādha Suttaɱ

Pañcala's Verse

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
Proofed against and modified in accordance with the revised edition at dhammatalks.org
Provenance, terms and conditons

 


 

[1][pts] On one occasion Ven. Ānanda was staying near Kosambī at Ghosita's monastery.

Then Ven. Udāyin went to him and, on arrival, exchanged courteous greetings.

After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, he sat to one side.

As he was sitting there, he said to Ven. Ānanda, "This has been said by Pañcālacaṇḍa the deva's son:

'Truly in a confining place, he found an opening —
the one of extensive wisdom,
the awakened one who awakened through jhāna,[1]
the chief bull, withdrawn,
the sage.'

"Now which, my friend, is the confining place?

And which opening in the confining place is the Blessed One said to have attained?"

[Ven. Ānanda:] "The five strings of sensuality, my friend, are described by the Blessed One as a confining place.

Which five?

Forms cognizable via the eye — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, enticing, linked to sensual desire;

sounds cognizable via the ear...

smells cognizable via the nose...

tastes cognizable via the tongue...

tactile sensations cognizable via the body — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, enticing, linked to sensual desire.

These five strings of sensuality are described by the Blessed One as a confining place.

"Now there is the case where a monk — quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities — enters & remains in the first jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that directed thought & evaluation have not ceased.

This is the confining place there.

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, enters & remains in the second jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that rapture has not ceased.

This is the confining place there.

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the fading of rapture, remains in equanimity, mindful & alert, senses pleasure with the body, and enters & remains in the third jhāna, of which the noble ones declare, 'Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.'

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that the pleasure of equanimity has not ceased.

This is the confining place there.[2]

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — enters & remains in the fourth jhāna: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that the perception of form has not ceased.

This is the confining place there.

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of perceptions of (physical) form, with the disappearance of perceptions of resistance, and not attending to perceptions of multiplicity, (perceiving,) 'Infinite space,' enters & remains in the dimension of the infinitude of space.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that the perception of the dimension of the infinitude of space has not ceased.

This is the confining place there.

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of the infinitude of space, (perceiving,) 'Infinite consciousness,' enters & remains in the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that the perception of the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness has not ceased.

This is the confining place there.

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness, (perceiving,) 'There is nothing,' enters & remains in the dimension of nothingness.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that the perception of the dimension of nothingness has not ceased.

This is the confining place there.

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of nothingness, enters & remains in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel.

For even there, there's a confining place.

What is the confining place there?

Just that the perception of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception has not ceased.

This is the confining place there.

"Then there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception, enters & remains in the cessation of perception & feeling.

And as he sees (that) with discernment, effluents are completely ended.

Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, without a sequel."

 


In my edition of NDB (Bhk. Bodhi, 2012 Single Volume), this term is translated "awakened to jhāna".

p.p. explains it all — p.p.

[1] In NDB, this phrase is translated as "who discovered jhāna," but the verb is abuddhi: "awakened to."

[2] See AN 9:33, note 1.

 


 

Of Related Interest:

MN 121;
AN 9:34

Bhkkhu Thanissaro Notes here: The following three discourses show that, contrary to a popular misconception, the phrase, "Released through discernment" does not refer to a person who has attained release without experience of the jhānas. Instead, it refers to a person who has attained at least the first jhāna but does not experience any of the psychic powers that sometimes can be accessed through jhāna.


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