The Factors Leading to Enlightenment - Begin with right understanding



There were many disciples who could realise the Noble Truths and eradicate defilements and thus, the ariyan Sangha came into being. From that time on people could study and apply the Dhamma, which the Buddha had realised when he attained enlightenment, and which he taught in all details for forty- five years. The Dhamma the Buddha taught is subtle, intricate and deep in meaning. The Buddha taught the characteristics of all realities he had penetrated at the time of his enlightenment. One should study and investigate the Dhamma the Buddha taught in detail so as to have right understanding of it. Otherwise it will be impossible to develop the panna that can penetrate the true nature of realities and eradicate defilements.

One should have right understanding of the Dhamma from the beginning so that panna can be developed which knows the characteristics of realities as they are. From the beginning it should be known precisely which dhammas panna can penetrate: all that is reality and that appears right now through the eyes, the ears, the nose, the tongue, the bodysense and the mind-door.

Each moment when one sees, hears, smells, tastes, experiences tangible object or thinks, there is bound to be ignorance of the true nature of realities. The Buddha taught in all details about the dhammas that arise and appear all day long, at each moment, through the sense-doors and the mind-door. He taught the Dhamma so that we could see the disadvantages of defilements and the danger of being in the cycle of birth and death. So long as one does not see the danger of being in the cycle of birth and death, there is no sense of urgency, no energy to develop insight ( vipassana). Panna developed in vipassana sees the characteristics of realities as they are naturally appearing in daily life, and this kind of panna can eradicate defilements.


Topic 237



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