Asankhata, the Stable

Asankhata in Dhamma refers to what has no characteristics to arise, cease and change in the meantime (AN3.47).

I would say that this aligns with what is stable, constant, the not-desintegrating. And these are also used as synonyms for asankhata in SN43.14, together with: the subtle, the very hard to see, the amazing, the refuge, etc.

Because Asankhata is called very hard to see, i feel, it is rational that we understand asankhata as really points to something that can be known. I feel, it is irrational to think that ‘very hard to see, subtle’ are words to describe 'mere cessation, or 'nothing remaining after a last death.
The idea that asankhata can be known also aligns with MN115. In which is said that asankhata must be known to be called skilled and being an experts in the elements.

Buddha does not teach that there is only the element or aspect of what is arising, ceasing and changing. That is just one part of what we can know, as it were. Coming and going is not the complete picture! No change makes it complete.
Buddha clearly also teaches what is not arising, ceasing and changing, or in others words, what is stable, constant, not changing.

This can be a real ‘base’ for peace, for stilling of all formations, cessation, dispassion, purity. Asankhata, as it were, says that cessation is not nothing nor something. Where it points to cannot be considered to exist nor not to exist. Because it has not come into existence (no characteristics to arise) it can also not be considered an eternally existent thing, something etc.

So, from SN43.14 we can understand that Buddha saw asankhata as the stable and constant, the subtle, very hard to see, the Truth, the amazing, etc.

He did not teach the bliss, peace, of something eternal but the bliss and peace of what has no characteristics to arise, cease and change. This is beyond the world, it transcends conditioned existence. It will never be an object of the senses. The sutta’s do not teach that when all senses close down or cease, there is nothing. They also do not teach nothing after a last death of an awakened one.

I do not think that asankhata and atta are the same, nor that asankhata introduces an element of eternalism in Dhamma. But it certainly, beyond doubt, introduces the stable, the constant in Dhamma and, ofcourse, in reality.

There is, mendicants, that dimension where there is no earth, no water, no fire, no wind; no dimension of infinite space, no dimension of infinite consciousness, no dimension of nothingness, no dimension of neither perception nor non-perception; no this world, no other world, no moon or sun. There, mendicants, I say there is no coming or going or remaining or passing away or reappearing. It is not established, does not proceed, and has no support. Just this is the end of suffering.”

That it has no support, and is not established, means, i believe, it does not support on conditions.
Here the Buddha describes what does not depend on conditions and is therefor stable.

And the above clearly is not the right way to describe nothing after a last death. I do not understand why people uphold this irrational interpretation that the above verse is about mere cessation.
One cannot threat the cessation of a flame as if there is still something that is unestablished, unsupported and beyond samsara etc.

So, dukkha is in all conditioned existence because that always has an element of being unstable, not constant, cannot function as refuge, a base for peace. The end of dukkha lies in knowing the stable, the constant, the not-desintegrating, asankhata. The Buddha teaches the Path to Asankhata (SN43)

This to me makes sense.

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I believe one can also see it like this:

the mundane path is always about making, producing, creating, building up, constructing…but by nature that is all liable to cease, is not stable, constant, does desintegrate.

What is the builder? The builder is tanha. Tanha is like glue, it glues all together. One second glue :grinning:

Buddha makes use of our obsession to make, create, produce. He has also a mundane Path. He says, i believe: make, produce, construct all those skills that are conducive to the goal, namely, abandoning this builder, remove it, make an end to it.

If there is nothing built up, what is there to desintegrate? One arrives at the stable. The constant.

Since everything we know of arises and ceases, the unconditioned would have to be the “all-One” where everything conditioned emanates from, much like in Plotinus.

In his class to MN49 Bh. Bodhi mentions an ancient Pali commentary which is very interesting. Apparently Maro the Evil in the highest realm revolted against his father and took control from him.

He then possibly went on to create the conditioned. Because of his ignorance, he botched his creation and ended up creating birth, old age, illness, death.

Therefore, ignorance in the list of the 12 nidanas could possibly also be understood to refer to his ignorance, or cosmic ignorance as the initiating factor of creation in general.

You know this concept very well by know @Green.

If I understand you correctly, you are contradicting yourself here. So when a flame goes off is there anything remaining?
AFAIK, Nibbana is metaphorically compared to a flame because just like there is nothing remaining after the flame is extinguished, there is nothing remaining after the existence is extinguished or comes to an end.
With Metta

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