AN8.83 — explanation of the sutta by Ajahn Brahmāli (?) in Wisdom Publication tome

Stoked to see this footnote 1801 in Wisdom Publication’s Aṅguttara Nikāya 8.83:

Brahmāli (in a private communication) offers a fine explanation of this cryptic sutta: “I understand sabbe dhammā to be a reference to the world of personal experience. The meaning would then be as follows: All elements of our experience are rooted in desire (chandamūlakā) in the sense that we exist due to desire (taking chanda as equivalent to craving). They come into being through attention (manasikārasambhavā) in the sense that we only experience what we attend to. They originate from contact (phassasamudayā) because without contact we don’t experience anything at all. They converge upon feeling (vedanāsamosaraṇā) in the sense that feeling is the most important aspect of our experience, the basic motivating factor in everything we do. They are headed by concentration (samādhippamukhā) in the sense that concentration is a controlling faculty (an indriya) whose lead all elements of our experience must follow. They are under the authority of mindfulness (satādhipateyyā) because mindfulness is another controlling faculty which directs us in whatever we do or experience. All things have wisdom as supervisor (paññuttarā) because wisdom is the chief of the controlling faculties; wisdom, more than anything else, controls our experience (the last three factors are what allow us to get a sense of being in charge of our lives). That liberation is their core (vimuttisārā), the most excellent of all things, is self-explanatory.”

Ajahn Brahmāli, was that you? Found the sutta when searching for the phrase “sabbe dhamma sati ādhipateyya” you mentioned in today’s sutta reading (sutta retreat). My next to do thing is to search the pdfs or epubs (yeah, especially since I had them combined, but they load so slowly) of the 4 tomes to see if I can see more of these accreditations of our dearest teachers.


Let’s tag bhante @brahmali so he can answer you @waiyin


Yes, that’s me. You know, I don’t think there are heaps of Brahmāli’s out there! :grinning:


22 occurrences of Brahmāli (Searching the ‘anthology’ of Wisdom Publication tomes) — only extracting Ajahn @Brahmali’s words:

3 in preface to Aṅguttara Nikāya
4. AN3.34 Footnote 373 Brahmāli writes: “There must be a distinction here between ‘non-greed’ (alobha ) and the situation when ‘greed has vanished’ (lobhe vigata ). The former must refer to the motivation behind a particular action, the latter to the full uprooting of greed, attained only by the non-returner or even the arahant. Only in the light of this distinction does this statement make sense.”
5. AN3.61 Footnote 432 Brahmāli writes: “The point here seems to be that each of these unwholesome ways of acting is related to particular feelings, and that those feelings (or experiences) can only be experienced through those acts. It follows that if your kamma is such that you have to experience the feelings connected with those bad acts, then you will have to perform them.”
6. AN4.160 Footnote 848 I follow Brahmāli’s suggestion that suttantaṃ here has an implicitly plural sense; for other examples, see Vin III 159,12, and Vin IV 344,21.
7. AN5.55 Footnote 1052 Brahmāli suggests taking ugghātitā as “obese,” but I’m not sure this would work.
8. AN5.100 Footnote 1104 On gāmakkhetta Brahmāli writes: “This word also occurs at MN III 10,11: ekaṃ gāmakkhettaṃ upanissāya viharāma , and at MN II 167,27: amhākaṃ gāmakkhettaṃ āgacchanti . From these passages it seems quite clear to me that gāmakkhetta refers to a village together with all its fields” (private communication).
9. AN5.192 Footnote 1188 I follow Brahmāli’s suggestion to delete sace doṇa brāhmaṇo anutuniṃ gacchati , which leaves a text that makes good sense.
10. AN5.196 Footnote 1200 Brahmāli suggests: “[the dream] … represented his awakening to the unsurpassed, perfect enlightenment,” with a parallel construction for the corresponding sections below.
11. AN5.196 Footnote 1201 Brahmāli suggests here: “This was the first great dream that was beneficial for his awakening,” again with a parallel construction for the corresponding sections below.
12. AN5.201 Footnote 1210 Brahmāli disagrees with me about this and writes: “This [translation] seems to assume that Kimbila is thinking in cosmic terms, about Tathāgatas as a type of being. But it seems more likely to me that he was concerned specifically with what would happen after Gotama Buddha passed away.”
13. AN6.19: Footnote 1284 Brahmāli rejects Mp’s interpretation and regards the sentence as an emphatic statement of fact, which he renders: “Indeed, I may live just a night and a day; I should attend to the Blessed One’s teaching.”
14. AN6.44 Footnote 1331 Brahmāli writes: “I understand Ānanda to simply be saying that it should be understood just as the Buddha explained it,” and he suggests rendering the sentence: “Just so, sister, as this was declared by the Blessed One.”
15. AN6.54 Footnote 1364 Brahmāli called my attention to an entry in DOP (p. 744) for a noun khanti2, meaning “hurt, injury,” presumably derived from the verb khaṇati1, “hurts, injures, impairs.”
16. AN7.28 Footnote 1481 Brahmāli suggests “he is supposed to leave this work for the theras [elders], who are expected to look after it.”
17. AN7.28 Footnote 1482 Again, I follow Brahmāli’s interpretation: “Since it is the task of these elders, they will have to take ultimate responsibility (and the blame or praise) no matter who carries it out. Thus he should leave it to them.”
18. AN8.83 Footnote 1801 (as above)
19. AN8.86 Footnote 1807 Brahmāli suggests numbering the sentence that begins “Even some deities” as §1 and treating the final sentence of the sutta as unnumbered, which would be consistent with 6:42 .
20. AN8.90 Footnote 1815 I follow Brahmāli’s suggestion that mūla here is “the root offense,” that is, the original offense that led to the formal charge of aggravated misconduct.
21. AN9.34 Footnote 1909 Brahmāli comments: “Since nibbāna is ‘extinguishment’ (of suffering), any partial extinguishment of suffering is a partial kind of nibbāna.”
22. AN11.13 Footnote 2216 Brahmāli writes: “It is worth noting that a layperson speaks of entering upon the rains residence. Perhaps this was a common phenomenon in northern India, and not just restricted to samaṇas . Maybe it was generally too difficult to travel.”

No. 7 from AN5.55 — Bhikkhu Bodhi’s used the word “swollen” (“obese” was suggested by Ajahn Brahmali, “injured” was what Bhante Sujato used). What came to mind with “swollen” was the word “pregnant” whereby the words, obese & injured (stretching one’s imagination a bit) would be acceptable too. Maybe I should just keep quiet.
No. 22 is inspiring…

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