SN 56.11

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This page is a translated version of a page SN 56.11 and the translation is 100% complete.

PTS: SN V/420,25-424,11

The Sermon about the Setting in Motion of the Dhamma wheel

Thus have I heard. On one occasion the Blessed One was staying in the deer park at Isipatana, near Bārāṇasī. It was there that the Blessed One spoke to a group of five mendicants: There are two extremes, mendicants, that one who has gone forth into homelessness should not practise. What two? The lustful devotion to adherence to happiness that is rooted in sensual pleasure, that is low, vulgar, ignoble and damaging; as well as the devotion to self-torture, which is painful, ignoble and damaging. By understanding to avoid these two extremes, mendicants, the so-gone understood fully the middle path, which leads to vision, knowledge, peace of mind, insight, the highest access and to cessation.

And what is, mendicants, this middle path, that the so-gone understood fully, that leads to vision, knowledge, peace of mind, insight, the highest access and to cessation? It is the eightfold noble path, namely right view, right decision, right speech, right action, right conduct of life, right effort, right mindfulness, right centering/concentration. Truly, mendicants, this is the middle path the the so-gone understood fully, that leads to vision, knowledge, peace of mind, insight, the highest access and to cessation.

Now this, mendicants, is the noble one’s truth about the uncomfortable: birth is uncomfortable, aging is uncomfortable, sickness is uncomfortable, death is uncomfortable; contact with the unwelcome is uncomfortable, separation from the cherished is uncomfortable, not getting something that you are wishing for is uncomfortable. Also the five groups of adherence, summarily, are uncomfortable. Now this, mendicants, is the noble one’s truth about the emergence of the uncomfortable: This thirst leads to rebirth and is connected to joy and lust, seeking pleasure here and there; namely the thirst for sensual pleasure, the thirst for existence and the thirst for destruction.

And now this, mendicants, is the noble one’s truth regarding the elimination of the uncomfortable: the elimination of this very thirst through renunciation, through relinquishment, through abstinence, the redemption [and] the freedom [from it]. Now this, mendicants, is the noble one’s truth about the path that leads to elimination of the uncomfortable: It is precisely the eightfold noble path. namely right view ... right centering/concentration. This is the noble one’s truth about the uncomfortable'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things/lessons, I gained insight, knowledge, wisdom, profound knowledge, (inner) light. 'This very truth of the noble one about the uncomfortable is to be understood correctly'; so, mendicants, ... has been correctly understood'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things/lessons, I gained insight, knowledge, wisdom, profound knowledge, (inner) light.

'This is the noble one’s truth about the cause of the uncomfortable'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things/lessons, I gained insight, knowledge, wisdom, profound knowledge, (inner) light. 'This very truth of the noble one regarding the cause of the uncomfortable is to be abandoned'; so, mendicants, in formerly ... has been abandoned'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things/lessons, I gained insight ... (inner) light. 'This is the noble one’s truth regarding the elimination of the uncomfortable'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things, I gained insight, knowledge, wisdom, profound knowledge, (inner) light. 'This very truth of the noble one regarding the elimination of the uncomfortable is to be realized'; so, mendicants, in formerly ... has been realized'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things, I gained insight, knowledge, wisdom, profound knowledge, (inner) light.

'This is the noble one’s truth regarding the path that leads to elimination of the uncomfortable'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things/lessons, I gained insight, knowledge, wisdom, profound knowledge, (inner) light. 'This very truth of the noble one regarding the path that leads to elimination of the uncomfortable is to be developed'; so, mendicants ... has been developed'; so, mendicants, in formerly unheard things/lessons, I gained insight, knowledge, wisdom, profound knowledge, (inner) light. So long, mendicants, as my complete knowledge of these four noble truths, (their) three sequences/phases (and) twelve conditions has not actually been fully purified, so long, mendicants, I have by no means claimed to have achieved the highest awareness, the absolute enlightenment, in this world with its deities Māra and Brahmā, (within) this generation including ascetics and brahmins, deities and humans. And certainly, mendicants, as soon as my complete knowledge of these four noble truths, (their) three sequences/phases (and) twelve conditions has actually been fully purified, [from] then [on] I claimed, mendicants, to have achieved the highest awareness, the absolute enlightenment, in this world with its deities Māra and Brahmā, (within) this generation including ascetics and brahmins, deities and humans. And I have gained this knowledge and insight: „Unshakable is my mind’s liberation, this is my last birth, renewed becoming is no longer possible.“

This was said by the Blessed One. Uttlery delighted the group of five mendicants welcomed what was spoken by the Blessed One. And while this teaching was being spoken, the honorable Koṇḍañña gained the dust-free and flawless vision of the teaching: „Whatever emerges due to causes, falls victim to cessation as well.“ And as the Blessed One has set the wheel of the doctrine in motion, the earth-deities made heard the following cry: “[The] Blessed One has set the unmatched wheel of the doctrine in motion in the deer park Isipatana, near Bārāṇasī, unstoppable by ascetics, brahmins, god, Māra, Brahmā or anybody (else) in this world.“ After having heard the cry of the earth-deities, the deities belonging to the following of the four great kings made heard the following cry: „[The] Blessed One ... or anybody (else) in this world.“

After having heard the cry of the deities belonging to the following of the four great kings, the thirty-three deities ... [the] Yāma-deities … [the] Tusita-deities … [the] Nimmānaratī-deities … [the] deities belonging to the body of Brahmā made heard the following cry: “[The] Blessed One has set the unmatched wheel of the doctrine in motion in the deer park Isipatana, near Bārāṇasī, unstoppable by ascetics, brahmins, god, Māra, Brahmā or anybody (else) in this world.“ Indeed in this very moment, this very instant the cry reached as far as the Brahmā world. Ten-thousand world systems quaked, trembled and were being shaken. And an immensely-glorious light appeared in the world, surpassing even the majesty of the deities.

In this very moment the Blessed one delivered the following statement: „Understood, truly, he has, my dear, Koṇḍañña! Understood, truly, he has, my dear, Koṇḍañña!“ In this way the name „Understood[-Having] Koṇḍañña“ of the honorable Koṇḍañña emerged.

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