Sn 5.13 Udaya manava puccha

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Udaya-manava-puccha: Udaya's Questions

translated from the Pali by

Thanissaro Bhikkhu


To the one in jhana seated dustless, passionless, his task done, effluent-free, gone to the beyond of all phenomena, I've come with a question. Tell me the gnosis of emancipation, the breaking open of ignorance.

[The Buddha:]

The abandoning both of sensual desires, & of unhappiness, the dispelling of sloth, the warding off of anxieties, equanimity-&-mindfulness purified, with inspection of mental qualities swift in the forefront: That I call the gnosis of emancipation, [1] the breaking open of ignorance. [2]


With what is the world fettered? With what is it examined? Through the abandoning of what is there said to be Unbinding?

[The Buddha:]

With delight the world's fettered. With directed thought it's examined. Through the abandoning of craving is there said to be Unbinding.


Living mindful in what way does one bring consciousness to a halt? We've come questioning to the Blessed One. Let us hear your words.

[The Buddha:]

Not relishing feeling, inside or out: One living mindful in this way brings consciousness to a halt. [3]


1. For a discussion of the "gnosis of emancipation" the state of knowledge consisting of mental absorption coupled with an analysis of mental states, see AN 9.36 and Section III.F in The Wings to Awakening.

2. AN 3.32 contains a discussion of this verse. The Buddha tells Ven. Sariputta that one should train oneself such that "with regard to this conscious body, there will be no 'I'-making or 'mine'-making or obsession of conceit, such that with regard to all external themes [topics of concentration] there will be no 'I'-making or 'mine'-making or obsession of conceit, and that we will enter & remain in the awareness-release & discernment-release in which there is no 'I'-making or 'mine'-making or obsession of conceit." When one has trained in this way, he says, one is called a person who has cut through craving, unraveled the fetter, who has, through the right penetration of conceit, put an end to suffering & stress. He then states that it was in connection to this state that he uttered this verse.

3. For a discussion of "bringing consciousness to a halt" showing that it is not an annihilation of consciousness, but rather the ending of its proliferating activity see SN 22.53.