Majjhima Nikāya I
1. 9. Sammādiṭṭhisuttaṃ
(9) Right View

I heard thus.

“At one time the Blessed One lived in the monastery offered by Anāthapindika in Jeta's grove in Sāvatthi. From there venerable Sāriputta addressed the bhikkhus:

““Friends, bhikkhus, it is said, `Right view; the view, rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, how does the noble disciple come to this good Teaching?”

“"Friend, we came from afar to hear the meaning of these words from venerable Sāriputta, good that the meaning occurs to venerable Sāriputta, hearing it from venerable Sāriputta, the bhikkhus will bear it in mind."

“"Then listen carefully and attend. When the noble disciple knows demerit and its roots, merit and its roots, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“Friends, what is demerit, and what are the roots of demerit? Destroying life is demerit, taking the not given is demerit, misbehaviour in sensuality is demerit, telling lies is demerit, slandering is demerit, rough talk is demerit, frivolous talk is demerit, coveting is demerit, bearing the angry mind is demerit, and wrong view is demerit. These are demerit.

“What are the roots of demerit? Greed is a root of demerit, anger is a root of demerit, and delusion is a root of demerit. These are the roots of demerit.

“What is merit? Abstaining from destroying life is merit. Abstaining from taking what is not given is merit. Abstaining from misbehaviour in sensuality is merit. Abstaining from telling lies is merit. Abstaining from slandering is merit. Abstaining from rough talk is merit. Abstaining from frivolous talk is merit. Abstaining from coveting is merit. Not bearing an angry mind is merit and right view is merit. These are merit.

“What are the roots of merit? Non-greed is a root of merit. Non-hate is a root of merit. And non-delusion is a root of merit. These are the roots of merit. When the noble disciple knows demerit and roots of demerit, merit and roots of merit, he gives up all latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and completly destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, be endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching and would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows supports, the arising of supports, the cessation of supports, and the path to the cessation of supports, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“Friends, what are supports, what is the arising of supports, what is the cessation of supports, and what is the path to the cessation of supports? There are these four supports for the born, for their upkeep, and as help for those seeking birth. What four? Material supports hard and fine. Contact is second. Mental cognition is the third. [1] And consciousness is the fourth. With the arising of craving arises supports, with the cessation of craving ceases supports. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of supports, namely, right view, right thoughts, right words, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows, `These are supports, this is the arising of supports, this is the cessation of supports, and this is the path to the cessation of supports,' he gives up all latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to the good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, be endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching and would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows unpleasantness, the arising of unpleasantness, the cessation of unpleasantness, and the path to the cessation of unpleasantness, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“Friends, what is unpleasantness, what is the arising of unpleasantness, what is the cessation of unpleasantness, and what is the path to the cessation of unpleasantness?

“Friends, what is unpleasantness? Birth, decay, ailments, death, grief, wailing, displeasure and distress, all these are unpleasant, if one does not get one's desires, that's also unpleasant. In short, the five holding masses are unpleasant. To this is called unpleasantness.

“Friends, what is the arising of unpleasantness? That same greed to be born again, accompanied with interest and greed, delighting in this and the other such as sensual greed, the greed `to be' and the greed `not to be', this is the arising of unpleasantness. What is the cessation of unpleasantness That same remainderless detachment, cessation, renouncing, giving up, release without settling in cravung, is the cessation of unpleasantness.

“What is the path to the cessation of unpleasanatness? This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of unpleasantness, namely, right view, right thoughts, right words, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.

“When the noble disciple knows, `This is unpleasant, this is the arising of unpleasantness, this is the cessation of unpleasantness, and this is the path to the cessation of unpleasantness,' he gives up all latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as 'I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to the good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, `Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows decay and death, the arising of decay and death, the cessation of decay and death, the path to the cessation of decay and death, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching he comes to this good Teaching.

“What is decay and death, what is the arising of decay and death, what is the cessation of decay and death and what is the path to the cessation of decay and death? Decay, decrepitude, brokenness, greyness of hair, wrinkledness of skin, dwindling in age and the maturity of the faculties of this and other class of beings is decay.

“Friends what is death? Disappearing, ceasing, breaking up and fading, ending in death, the breaking up of the holding masses, and laying down the body of this and other class of beings is death. This decay and this death is decay and death, With birth, decay and death arises; with the cessation of birth, decay and death cease. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of decay and death, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows, `This is decay and death, this is the arising of decay and death, this is the cessation of decay and death, and this is the path to the cessation of decay and death,' he gives up all latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as 'I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to the good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, `Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows birth, the arising of birth, the cessation of birth, and the path to the cessation of birth, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching he comes to this good Teaching.

“What is birth, what is the arising of birth, what is the cessation of birth, and what is the path to the cessation of birth? Birth, origin, coming to be, rebirth, the arising of the masses, the gain of mental faculties, in this and other class of beings, is birth. With the arising of being there is the arising of birth; with the cessation of being there is cessation of birth. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of birth, such as right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right cconcentration. When the noble disciple knows, `This is birth, this is the arising of birth, this is the cessation of birth and this is the path to the cessation of birth,' he gives up all latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows being, the arising of being, the cessation of being, and the path to the cessation of being, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“What is being, what is the arising of being, what is the cessation of being, and what is the path to the cessation of being. Friends, there are three [types of] being: [2] being with sensuality, being with matter, and being with the immaterial. With the arising of holding there is the arising of being, with the cessation of holding there is the cessation of being. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of being; such as right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.

“When the noble disciple knows, `This is being, this is the arising of being, this is the cessation of being and this is the path to the cessation of being,' he gives up all latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as 'I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows holding, the arising of holding, the cessation of holding, and the path to the cessation of holding, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“What is holding, what is the arising of holding, what is the cessation of holdling, and what is the path to the cessation of holding? Friends, there are four holdings; [3] holding to sensuality, holding to views, holding to virtues, and holding to a self view. With the arising of craving arises holding; with the cessation of craving, holding ceases. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of holding; such as right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows, `This is holding, this is the arising of holding, this is the cessation of holding and this is the path to the cessation of holding,' he gives up all the latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows craving, the arising of craving, the cessation of craving, and the path to the cessation of craving, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“What is craving, what is the arising of craving, what is the cessation of craving, and what is the path to the cessation of craving. Friends, there are six bodies of craving: craving for forms, craving for sounds, craving for smells, craving for tastes, craving for touches, and craving for ideas. With the arising of feelings, craving arises; with the cessation of feelings craving ceases. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of craving; such as right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows, `This is craving, this is the arising of craving, this is the cessation of craving, and this is the path to the cessation of craving, he gives up all the latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows feelings, the arising of feelings, the cessation of feelings, and the path to the cessation of feelings, with this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to the good Teaching.

“What are feelings, what is the arising of feelings, what is the cessation of feelings, and what is the path to the cessation of feelings? Friends, these six are the bodies of feeling: feelings born of eye-contact, feelings born of ear-contact, feelings born of nose-contact, feelings born of tongue-contact, feelings born of body-contact and feelings born of mind-contact. With the arising of contact arise feelings, with the cessation of contact, feelings cease. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of feelings, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.

“When the noble disciple knows feelings thus, knows the arising of feelings thus, knows the cessation of feelings thus, and the path to the cessation of feelings thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out all latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows contact, the arising of contact, the cessation of contact and the path to the cessation of contact, with this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to the good Teaching.

“Friend, what is contact, what is the arising of contact, what is the cessation of contact, and what is the path to the cessation of contact? Friend, these six are the bodies of contact: eye-contact, ear-contact, nose-contact, tongue-contact, body-contact, and mind-contact. With the arising of the six mental spheres, arise contact; [4] with the ceasing of the six mental spheres, contact ceases. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of contact, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows contact thus, knows the arising of contact thus, knows the cessation of contact thus and path to the cessation of contact thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out the latent tendencies to aversion, and completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows the six mental spheres, the arising of the six mental spheres, the cessation of the six mental spheres, and the path to the cessation of the six mental spheres, with this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to the good Teaching.

“What are the six mental spheres, what is the arising of the six mental spheres, what is the cessation of the six mental spheres, and what is the path to the cessation of the six mental spheres" Friends, these six are the mental spheres: the sphere of the eye, the sphere of the ear, the sphere of the nose, the sphere of the tongue, the sphere of the body, and the sphere of the mind. With the arising of name-and-matter arise the six mental spheres; with the cessation of name-and-matter the six mental spheres cease. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of the mental spheres, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows mental spheres thus, knows the arising of the mental spheres thus, knows the cessation of the mental spheres thus and the path to the cessation of the mental spheres thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out the latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwvering faith in the Teaching, comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple would rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows name-and-matter, the arising of name-and-matter, the cessation of name-and-matter, and the path to the cessation of name-and-matter, with this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to the good Teaching.

“What is name-and-matter, what is the arising of name-and-matter, what is the cessation of name-and-matter, and what is the path to the cessation of name-and-matter? Feelings, perceptions, mental cognition, contact, and attention: this is name. The four primary elements, and this held form made out of the four primary elements, is matter. They together make name-and-matter. With the arising of consciousness arise name-and-matter. With the cessation of consciousness, name-and-matter ceases. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of name-and-matter, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows name-and-matter thus, knows the arising of name-and-matter thus, knows the cessation of name-and-matter thus, and the path to the cessation of name-and-matter thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out the latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends, When the noble disciple knows consciousness, the arsing of consciousness, the cessation of consciousness, and the path to the cessation of consciousness, with this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

What is consciousness, what is the arising of consciousness, what is the cessation of consciousness, and what is the path to the cessation of consciousness? Friends, these six are the conscious bodies: eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, nose-consciousness, tongue-conscioussness, body-consciousness and mind-consciousness. With the arising of determinations arise consciousness, with the cessation of determinations consciousness ceases. This same noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of consciousness, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows consciousness thus, the arising of consciousness thus, the cessation of consciousness thus and the path to the cessation of consciousness thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out the latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows determinations, the arising of determinations, the cessation of determinations, and the path to the cessation of determinations, with this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“What are determinations, what is the arising of determinations, what is the cessation of determinations, and what is the path to the cessation of determintions? Friends, these three are the determinations: bodily determinations, verbal determinations, and mental determinations. [5] With the arising of ignorance arise determinations, with the cessation of ignorance determinations cease. This noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of determinations, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows determinations thus, the arising of determinations thus, the cessation of determinations thus, and the path to the cessation of determinations thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out the latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as'I be' dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows ignorance, the arising of ignorance, the cessation of ignorance, and the path to the cessation of ignorance, with this much, the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“What is ignorance, what is the arising of ignorance, what is the cessation of ignorance and what is the path to the cessation of ignorance: Friends, the not knowing unpleasantness, the arising of unpleasantness, the cessation of unpleasantness and not knowing the path to the cessation of unpleasantness, that is ignorance. With the arising of desires arise ignoranace, with the cessation of desires cease ignorance. This noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of ignorance, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows ignorance thus, knows the arising of ignorance thus, knows the cessation of ignoeance thus and the path to the cessation of ignorance thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out the latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance, arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching comes to this good Teaching.”

Those bhikkhus, accepting and delighting in the words of venerable Sāriputta asked, “Friend, is there another method by which the noble disciple rectify his view, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, would come to this good Teaching?”

“There is, friends. When the noble disciple knows desires, the arising of desires, the cessation of desires, and the path to the cessation of desires, with this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching, he comes to this good Teaching.

“What are desires, what is the arising of desires, what is the cessation of desires, and what is the path to the cessation of desires? Friends, these three are the desires: sensual desires, desires to be, and desires on account of ignorance. [6] With the arising of ignorance, desires arise; with the cessation of ignorance, desires cease. This noble eightfold path is the path to the cessation of ignorance, namely, right view, right thoughts, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. When the noble disciple knows desires thus, knows the arising of desires thus, knows the cessation of desires thus, and the path to the cessation of desires thus, he gives up the latent tendencies to greed, drives out the latent tendencies to aversion, and, completely destroying the latent tendency to measure as `I be', dispels ignorance arouses science, and here and now makes an end of unpleasantness. With this much the view rectified, endowed with unwavering faith in the Teaching comes to this good Teaching.”

Venerable Sāriputta said thus and those bhikkhus delighted in his words.


[1] Mental cognition is the third: `manos~ncetanā tatiyo'. These are the hopes, wishes, desires, and aspirations about the future, intentions in the present, and recollections of the past. A person is supported on these and lives on account of them.

[2] These three are the beings: `tayo 'me āvuso bhavā'. Being is the mind's behaviour in sensual thoughts, thinking about material and maintaining the mind in immaterial states.

[3] These four are the holdings: `cattāro 'me āvuso upādānā'. This holding is something done with the mind. This fourfold holding consists of holding to sensuality, holding to views, holding to virtues, and holding to a self view (tanhā paccayā upādāna, upādāna paccayā bhava). The three links (craving, holding, and being) are mental links just before a birth. It's a birth of a thought. Craving starts at one or other of the mental spheres, i.e., through seeing, hearing, etc, and then the mental hold of it and being with it. This is a very subtle, quick procedure and it is very difficult to be observed.

[4] With the arising of the six mental spheres arise contact: `salāyatanasamudayā phassasamudayo'. The arising of the mental spheres is the arising of a person who can see, hear, smell, etc.; it is this person who is subjected to a contact.

[5] Bodily determination, verbal determination and mental determination: 'kāyasankhāro vaciisankhāro cittasankhāro'. According to the Cuulavedalla Sutta (M. 44), Bhikkhuni Dhammadinnā explains it thus: bodily determinations are in- and out-breaths, as they are bound up with the body; without them the body would not function. Verbal determinations are thinking and pondering. Words always follow thinking and pondering. So thinking and pondering are verbal determinations. Mental determinations are perceptions and feelings; as perceptions and feelings are bound up with the mind, they are mental determinations.

[6] Desires on account of ignorance: 'avijjāsavo'. These desires arise at one or the other of the mental spheres; that is, by seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching, or cognizing with the mind. The ignorance that arises is to take those desires as permanent, agreeabale, and as “mine”. To dispel ignorance one has to dispel the view that these desires are permanent, agreeable, and “they are mine”.