Is the DO merely an explanation?

Is the DO merely an explanation or also a kind of Contemplation / meditation ?

One who sees (passati) dependent origination sees (passati) the Dhamma; one who sees (passati) the Dhamma sees (passati) dependent origination. MN 28

:seedling:

…cessation of birth; with the cessation of birth, ageing and death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief and despair cease. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering…Bhikkhus, knowing (jānantā) and seeing (passantā) in this way… Good, bhikkhus. So you have been guided by me with this Dhamma, which is visible here and now, immediately effective, inviting inspection, onward leading, to be experienced by the wise for themselves. MN 38

:seedling:

When the bhikkhu becomes clever… in dependent arising… he becomes an inquirer (vīmaṃsako) … the bhikkhu knows (pajānāti), when this is present, this happens, when this arises, this arise. When this is not present, this does not happen, when this ceases, this cease. MN 115

:seedling:

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I suggest you to check the transcendental dependent origination depicted in suttas like SN12.23, AN10.2, AN11.2, AN4.12, SN46.3

It is more than an explanation and call for individual investigation and verification. In a nutshell it is the big picture that matters, in both it modes: mundane (or suffering-perpetuating) and transcendental (or suffering-ceasing).

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@gnlaera
I enlarge the diagram but not clear , can you show how to make it clear ?

Download​ it from the creator’s website:

http://www.jayarava.org/dependent-arising.html

:anjal:

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To me, dependent origination is not merely an explanation of dukkha. We can use DO to do so; however, it is much more than that. With DO, we can see why we are suffering, how to end it, and the way to end that suffering. Therefore, we can see the four noble truth, the noble eight fold path. Moreover, it provides the basic for our validation of the Dhamma. However, it is not very easy to explain and understand.

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There are many interpretations of DO and this is the traditional interpretation of DO. However, I do not follow any of them (three lives or moment to moment). I have my own understanding of DO, and if you are interest in it, I will share my understanding with you. However, it is not easy and it is lengthy.

If you don’t agree with the traditional views and of the Buddha , then ,
what are the ultimate goal
for you with your understanding ?

I do not subscribe to the traditional views, and I do not believe those views are directly from the Buddha. They are from commentaries or later teachers. I follow what the Buddha said in the Suttas, and we can verify what I said from the Suttas if needed.

The goal is for better understanding DO, understand the four noble truth and the noble eight fold path, for liberation from suffering, for stilling all volitional formations, for relinquishment, for cessation, for nibbana.

However, I do not expect anyone to accept my view. If you want to explore new ideas, then I can share. Otherwise, you can follow your own understanding. I do not say the traditional understandings are wrong, but I just do not subscribe to them because they do not explain what I look for and they are not clear to me.

I do not know much Pali, I let that task to the scholars who are much better than me. However, if you want to know what I know about DO, I can walk you through by simple plain English (because my English is very bad too).

To define a system, we will need:
Axiom, premises, postulates
Definitions
Theorems
Methods

Similarily, In Buddhist’s system we will have:
Premises
Definitions
Theorems
Methods

Dependent Origination are premises of Buddhist’s system. Remember that premises are the accepted true in the system and we do not need to prove them. However, we can verify them with experiences.
With birth as condition, aging-and-death come to be: This is a premise in Buddhist’s system. This is the true, verifiable, eternal, fixed and stable.

Same for others pairs:
With existence as condition, birth’ … ‘With clinging as condition, existence’ … ‘With craving as condition, clinging’ … ‘With feeling as condition, craving’ … ‘With contact as condition, feeling’ … ‘With the six sense bases as condition, contact’ … ‘With name-and-form as condition, the six sense bases’ … ‘With consciousness as condition, name-and-form’ … ‘With volitional formations as condition, consciousness’ … ‘With ignorance as condition, volitional formations’: whether there is an arising of Tathagatas or no arising of Tathagatas, that element still persists, the stableness of the Dhamma, the fixed course of the Dhamma, specific conditionality. A Tathagata awakens to this and breaks through to it. Having done so, he explains it, teaches it, proclaims it, establishes it, discloses it, analyses it, elucidates it. And he says: ‘See! With ignorance as condition, bhikkhus, volitional formations.’(SN 12.20)

Remember when we learn geometry, we first learn about axiom (or postulates)

Let the following be postulated":
“To draw a straight line from any point to any point.”
“To produce [extend] a finite straight line continuously in a straight line.”
“To describe a circle with any centre and distance [radius].”
“That all right angles are equal to one another.”
The parallel postulate: “That, if a straight line falling on two straight lines make the interior angles on the same side less than two right angles, the two straight lines, if produced indefinitely, meet on that side on which are the angles less than the two right angles.”

These are the true in the system, and they provide the basic for validations in the system.

I do not want to say too much. If you agree with this, then we can move on.

Now, we can go with definitions in DO (SN 12.2)

Remember that definitions are also accepted true of the system. If we do not accept them, we do not subscribe to the system.

Definitions are also the basic for validation in the system. (We can use them as true)

And what, bhikkhus, is aging-and-death? The aging of the various beings in the various orders of beings, their growing old, brokenness of teeth, greyness of hair, wrinkling of skin, decline of vitality, degeneration of the faculties: this is called aging. The passing away of the various beings from the various orders of beings, their perishing, breakup, disappearance, mortality, death, completion of time, the breakup of the aggregates, the laying down of the carcass: this is called death. Thus this aging and this death are together called aging-and-death.

“And what, bhikkhus, is birth? The birth of the various beings into the various orders of beings, their being born, descent into the womb, production, the manifestation of the aggregates, the obtaining of the sense bases. This is called birth.

“And what, bhikkhus, is existence? There are these three kinds of existence: sense-sphere existence, form-sphere existence, formless-sphere existence. This is called existence.

“And what, bhikkhus, is clinging? There are these four kinds of clinging: clinging to sensual pleasures, clinging to views, clinging to rules and vows, clinging to a doctrine of self. This is called clinging.

“And what, bhikkhus, is craving? There are these six classes of craving: craving for forms, craving for sounds, craving for odours, craving for tastes, craving for tactile objects, craving for mental phenomena. This is called craving.

“And what, bhikkhus, is feeling? There are these six classes of feeling: feeling born of eye-contact, feeling born of ear-contact, feeling born of nose-contact, feeling born of tongue-contact, feeling born of body-contact, feeling born of mind-contact. This is called feeling.

“And what, bhikkhus, is contact? There are these six classes of contact: eye-contact, ear-contact, nose-contact, tongue-contact, body-contact, mind-contact. This is called contact.

“And what, bhikkhus, are the six sense bases? The eye base, the ear base, the nose base, the tongue base, the body base, the mind base. These are called the six sense bases.

“And what, bhikkhus, is name-and-form? Feeling, perception, volition, contact, attention: this is called name. The four great elements and the form derived from the four great elements: this is called form. Thus this name and this form are together called name-and-form.

“And what, bhikkhus, is consciousness? There are these six classes of consciousness: eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, nose-consciousness, tongue-consciousness, body-consciousness, mind-consciousness. This is called consciousness.

“And what, bhikkhus, are the volitional formations? There are these three kinds of volitional formations: the bodily volitional formation, the verbal volitional formation, the mental volitional formation. These are called the volitional formations.

“And what, bhikkhus, is ignorance? Not knowing suffering, not knowing the origin of suffering, not knowing the cessation of suffering, not knowing the way leading to the cessation of suffering. This is called ignorance.

However, I am busy now, so I will continue when I have more time…

[quote=“James, post:1, topic:5703, full:true”]
Is the DO merely an explanation or also a kind of Contemplation / meditation ?
[/quote]What sometimes gets called dependent cessation (DC? :smirk:) strikes me as something that could be called " a kind of contemplation/meditation", but its not really, since, like DO, it is a process.

If DO, itself, were a kind of contemplation/meditation, rebirth itself would be meditation? Suffering, aging, and death would be itself a kind of contemplation/meditation?

That is as best as I can understand your OP, did you mean something like: “Is DO only an explanation or it is also a subject of contemplation and meditation?”

What did you mean by asking if DO could be a kind of meditation?

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Let’s continue… Please let me know when you are getting bore, and do not want me to continue. Please also remember that this is my own way of understanding totally independent from others. So, do not take this as the true, but help me to validate it. I will try to post as much as I could and hope that you all would gain some benefits from this.

Some more definitions needed for DO

contact: In dependence on the eye and forms there arises eye-consciousness, The meeting, the encounter, the concurrence of these three things is called eye-contact. Same for other sense faculties, sense object and sense-contact.

Dependently arisen phenomena: (SN 12.20)

Aging-and-death, bhikkhus, is impermanent, conditioned, dependently arisen, subject to destruction, vanishing, fading away, and cessation. Birth is impermanent … Existence is impermanent … Clinging is impermanent … Craving is impermanent … Feeling is impermanent … Contact is impermanent … The six sense bases are impermanent … Name-and-form is impermanent … Consciousness is impermanent … Volitional formations are impermanent … Ignorance is impermanent, conditioned, dependently arisen, subject to destruction, vanishing, fading away, and cessation. These, bhikkhus, are called the dependently arisen phenomena

Conditioned:
Bhikkhus, there are these three characteristics that define the conditioned. What three? An arising is seen, a vanishing is seen, and its alteration while it persists is seen. These are the three characteristics that define the conditioned

Unconditioned:
Bhikkhus, there are these three characteristics that define the unconditioned. What three? No arising is seen, no vanishing is seen, and no alteration while it persists is seen. These are the three characteristics that define the unconditioned

Now we can move to some theorems:

Remember that “a theorem is a statement that has been proved on the basis of previously established statements, such as other theorems, and generally accepted statements, such as axioms. A theorem is a logical consequence of the axioms.”

We will base on our premises to come up with our theorems:

With the cessation of birth, cessation aging-and-death: This theorem comes from the premise “With birth as condition, aging-and-death come to be”

Same to other premises, we will have these additional theorems"

With the remainderless fading away and cessation of ignorance comes cessation of volitional formations.
With the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness.
With the cessation of consciousness, cessation of name-and-form.
With the cessation of name-and-form, cessation of the six sense bases.
With the cessation of the six sense bases, cessation of contact.
With the cessation of contact, cessation of feeling.
With the cessation of feeling, cessation of craving.
With the cessation of craving, cessation of clinging.
With the cessation of clinging, cessation of existence.
With the cessation of existence, cessation of birth.

From the premises and these theorems, we come up with: (SN 12.1)

  1. The origin of suffering: (When we follow the premises)
    With ignorance as condition, volitional formations come to be; with volitional formations as condition, consciousness; with consciousness as condition, name-and-form; with name-and-form as condition, the six sense bases; with the six sense bases as condition, contact; with contact as condition, feeling; with feeling as condition, craving; with craving as condition, clinging; with clinging as condition, existence; with existence as condition, birth; with birth as condition, aging-and-death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, displeasure, and despair come to be.

  2. The cessation of suffering: (When we follow the theorems)
    But with the remainderless fading away and cessation of ignorance comes cessation of volitional formations; with the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness; with the cessation of consciousness, cessation of name-and-form; with the cessation of name-and-form, cessation of the six sense bases; with the cessation of the six sense bases, cessation of contact; with the cessation of contact, cessation of feeling; with the cessation of feeling, cessation of craving; with the cessation of craving, cessation of clinging; with the cessation of clinging, cessation of existence; with the cessation of existence, cessation of birth; with the cessation of birth, aging-and-death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, displeasure, and despair cease.

Now come to the interesting part, and see how we can use DO for our investigation…

To my own understanding, name-and-form represents a “person” because it has all components of a person (mind and body). What is name-and-form? Feeling, perception, volition, contact, attention: this is called name. The four great elements and the form derived from the four great elements: this is called form. Thus this name and this form are together called name-and-form.

Let’s examine volitional formations dependently arisen phenomena. It is defined as: the bodily volitional formation, the verbal volitional formation, the mental volitional formation.

To my understanding, bodily volitional formation is the kamma(or intention) accumulated by bodily actions, verbal volitional formation is the kamma accumulated by speech, mental volitional formation is the kamma accumulated by the mind. These kammas are created by the “person”, or we can say they come from name-and-form (since name-and-form represents a “person”). In other word, we can say that volitional formations is conditioned by name-and-form.

With this understanding, we can say: With name-and-form as condition, volitional formations come to be. However, this is NOT a dependent origination relationship because it is not in our premises. Therefore, this relationship is NOT a fixed, stable relationship. It is breakable! So, we should say: With name-and-form as condition, volitional formations MAY come to be.

So, what makes volitional formation come to be? Base on our premises, we see that “with ignorance as condition, volitional formations come to be”; therefore, ignorance is the condition that makes volitional formations arises.

Base on our theorem: “With the remainderless fading away and cessation of ignorance comes cessation of volitional formations”, we see that if there is no ignorance, volitional formations will not arise.

In summary, the new relationship between name-and-form -> volitional formations also depends on ignorance.

Now we can trace using this new relationship:

With ignorance and with name-and-form as condition, volitional formations come to be, with volitional formations as condition, consciousness come to be, with consciousness as condition, name-and-form come to be. Here, we see the loopback between name-and-form and consciousness.

Now we can relate to DN 15 and see how the Buddha described this loop. Moreover, we can see this loop happens due to ignorance! The hidden parts in DN 15 are volitional formations (and ignorance). That’s why we do not see them there. Moreover, we can also see that the six-sense-bases is not in DN 15! It is implied/hidden in name-and-form. Now we know why six-sense-bases, volitional formations and ignorance are not included in DN15.

“Ānanda, if one is asked: ‘Is contact due to a specific condition?’ one should say: ‘It is.’ If one is asked: ‘Through what condition is there contact?’ one should say: ‘With mentality-materiality as condition there is contact.’
“Ānanda, if one is asked: ‘Is mentality-materiality due to a specific condition?’ one should say: ‘It is.’ If one is asked: ‘Through what condition is there mentality-materiality?’ one should say: ‘With consciousness as condition there is mentality-materiality.’
“Ānanda, if one is asked: ‘Is consciousness due to a specific condition?’ one should say: ‘It is.’ If one is asked: ‘Through what condition is there consciousness?’ one should say: ‘With mentality-materiality as condition there is consciousness.’
“Thus, Ānanda, with mentality-materiality as condition there is consciousness; with consciousness as condition there is mentality-materiality; with mentality-materiality as condition there is contact; with contact as condition there is feeling; with feeling as condition there is craving; with craving as condition there is clinging; with clinging as condition there is existence; with existence as condition there is birth; and with birth as condition, aging and death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief, and despair come to be. Such is the origin of this entire mass of suffering.” (DN 15)

This is a questionable starting point since what was posted are merely translations and many of those translations are questionable or debatable. In other words, the Buddha did not speak in the English language.

Even when the translation is fairly accurate, some crucial words have sub-definitions in Pali. In other words, they may not have the common literal meanings as found in the English language.

:hatching_chick:

Below are obvious errors &/or questionable translations. For example, what exactly does the word “name” mean in the English language?

  • into the womb (absent from the Pali)

  • sense-sphere existence (absent from the Pali)

  • clinging (absent from the Pali)

  • clinging to (absent from the Pali)

  • name-and-form (inconsistent with the description of feeling…attention…water…air…)

  • volitional (absent from the Pali)

:penguin:

In the suttas, the phrase “independent from others” (including independence of the Buddha) seems to refer to realisation that ends suffering (stream-entry) rather than theory. For example:

Then Upāli, the householder, having thus, in the Dispensation of the Exalted One seen the Truth; attained to the Truth; comprehended the Truth, penetrated the Truth, overcome doubt; cast off uncertainty and gained full confidence without dependence on another, said to the Blessed One:

“Well, Venerable Sir, we must be going now. We have much to do.”

MN 56

:seedling:

Validation seems to mean it is “visible here-&-now”, as mentioned in MN 38:

Good, bhikkhus. So you have been guided by me with this Dhamma, which is visible here and now, immediately effective, inviting inspection, onward leading, to be experienced by the wise for themselves. For it was with reference to this that it has been said: ‘Bhikkhus, this Dhamma is visible here and now, immediately effective, inviting inspection, onward leading, to be experienced by the wise for themselves.’ MN 38

:seedling:

How is aging-&-death subject to arising, fading & destruction; in the same manner as say craving is subject to arising, fading & destruction?

How exactly does ‘death’ (‘marana’) ‘fade away’ (’ virāga)? :neutral_face:

How can the cessation of birth lead to the cessation of death? One would think the cessation of birth would result in the arising of death because birth is ordinarily held to be the opposite of death? :neutral_face:

The sankhara are the 2nd link and nama-rupa is the 4th link. Are you saying what is 4th occurs before what is 2nd? Or are you saying the 4th occurred in a previous life and the 2nd, being caused by the 4th, arose is a later life and then creates the 4th in the present life, even though the 4th must have originally existed before the 2nd? How does the 2nd exist before the 4th? :neutral_face:

Ooops… you explained that! :slightly_smiling_face:

Maybe the Buddha did not speak DN 15. How can we be certain the Buddha spoke DN 15 or SN 12.2?

How do you account for the following different definitions in SN 12.2 vs DN 15? :neutral_face:

“And what is consciousness? There are these six classes of consciousness: eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, nose-consciousness, tongue-consciousness, body-consciousness, mind-consciousness. This is called consciousness. SN 12.2

If consciousness were not to descend into the mother’s womb, would mentality-materiality take shape in the womb?.. after descending into the womb, consciousness were to depart, would mentality-materiality be generated into this present state of being?.. if the consciousness of a young boy or girl were to be cut off, would mentality-materiality grow up, develop and reach maturity. DN 15

And what is name-and-form? Feeling, perception, volition, contact, attention: this is called name. The four great elements and the form derived from the four great elements: this is called form. Thus this name and this form are together called name-and-form. SN 12.2

With mentality-materiality … those qualities, traits, signs and indicators through which there is a description of the mental body… those qualities, traits, signs, and indicators through which there is a description of the material body… DN 15

:neutral_face:

In a sutta (nidanasamyutta?) the Buddha asks his Bhikkhu’s to contemplate (yonisomanasikara) the DO. When he asks Bhikkhu’s to contemplate the Four Noble Truths, the DO is included in the 2nd and 3rd Noble Truths. Yonisomanasikara leads to Right view (samma ditti). He himself says as a bodhisatta he would,starting from suffering, enquirie the cause of suffering. Finding the cause of suffering is paramount for someone seeking the end of suffering. When he finds insight (vijja) ignorance is replaced and suffering comes to an end.

It is important to note that suffering doesn’t end from replacing it with samadhi bliss.

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DO definitely is not merely an explanation or a meditation. It’s importance was emphasized by the Buddha from the intro to DN 15 to correct Ven. Ananda’s wrong perception about DO:

Ven. Ananda: “It is wonderful and marvellous, venerable sir, how this dependent arising is so deep and appears so deep, yet to myself it seems as clear as clear can be.”

The Buddha: “Do not say so, Ānanda! Do not say so, Ānanda! This dependent arising, Ānanda, is deep and it appears deep. Because of not understanding and not penetrating this Dhamma, Ānanda, this generation has become like a tangled skein, like a knotted ball of thread, like matted rushes and reeds, and does not pass beyond saṃsāra with its plane of misery, unfortunate destinations, and lower realms."

The Buddha said that this doctrine not only appeared to be deep and profound but was actually deep and profound on four counts: 1.it was deep in meaning, 2.deep as a doctrine, 3.deep with respect to the manner in which it was taught, 4.and deep with regard to the facts on which it was established.

Thanks for your interest in my posts. Really appreciate that you have spent time to read though them, and have many valid concerns. I hope that you also may find some good stuffs that will benefit you.

What I show here is just examples (do not take them as true - they are samples that I just copy and paste from SC) of how this new view/method of investigation can be done. Of course, we will need to validate for ourselves all the premises, definitions, theorems before we accept them.

For example, we can try to validate: With birth as condition, aging-and-death come to be. Is this true? If it is so, then we accept it as true, and use this to prove other new theorems or methods. Otherwise, we will need to explore further (or someone with faith can accept it by faith and go on to the new stuffs).

After we satisfied with our validations, we can accept them as true, so we can use them to prove new stuffs. That’s how mathematics works. (I am not a mathematician, so please do not question me!)

If we found inconsistency, we will need to question it with an open mind. If we are not agree with it, then we will not need to follow it for now. Or we can try to prove that it is wrong.

If there is no birth, then there is no death. That’s what I understood.[quote=“Deeele, post:21, topic:5703”]
Maybe the Buddha did not speak DN 15. How can we be certain the Buddha spoke DN 15 or SN 12.2?

How do you account for the following different definitions in SN 12.2 vs DN 15?
[/quote]

We don’t know. Let the scholars decide that. I am focusing on the method of investigation. Even if the Buddha did not speak DN 15, it does not really matter to me. All I know is what I investigated lead me to that.

Let the scholars decide that. I do not worry too much about this. However, this is a valid concern, and we should explore them further if we still have doubt. All I care about is where all of those words will lead me to? If they lead me to limbo, then I will question them. But, I am OK now.[quote=“Deeele, post:21, topic:5703”]
In the suttas, the phrase “independent from others” (including independence of the Buddha) seems to refer to realisation that ends suffering (stream-entry) rather than theory. For example:
[/quote]

Sorry, my English is terrible! What I tried to say is that I came up with this method of investigation by myself and I am not an authorized person to certify or approve it, so please take it just as an experiment, not the true, or blindly accept it.

Yes, many of DO can be validated here and now. With birth as condition, aging-and-death come to be. However, some of them are hard to see if we do not have all the jhanas, and may require faith in the Buddha to accept them if we want to move on. However, you will see many of these can be validated here and now.

I hope that we all will learn something new everyday. That will bring joy and happiness.

This is the last part from this series of posts.

Now I will try to show how we can use DO to see the four noble truths and the noble eight fold path.

We can see: With name-and-form as condition, six sense bases, with six sense bases as condition, contact,…, with birth as condition, aging-and-death come to be. This chain of dependent originations is fixed and stable. It must happen. Therefore, with name-and-form which can be used as condition we must have sufferings with no exception!

Name-and-form is the “person” that we take as “I” or we can call it a self. Therefore, with “self”, suffering must arises. We now know why we need to get rid of this self (or name-and-form). How can we do so? Let’s see what is maintaining this name-and-form?

Remember last time, we discovered the loop:

“With ignorance and with name-and-form as condition, volitional formations comes to be, with volitional formations as condition, consciousness comes to be, with consciousness as condition, name-and-form comes to be.”

With ignorance, name-and-form as condition, volitional formations and also six-sense base come to be. Therefore, we have one chain leading to suffering while another chain feed back to name-and-form and start another chain of suffering.

From this, we can also see volitional formations by ignorance is feeding name-and-form in an endless loop. This will create endless suffering to the person (One suffering ended, another will come).

We also know that without ignorance, volitional formations will end and the loop will be cut off. Now we need to know what is ignorance?

The problem we are facing now is that name-and-form (the person) keeps going back to volitional formations and renews itself and then running to sufferings again. Why? Because it does not know by doing that it is heading again to sufferings. It does not see what it gets is sufferings in disguise.

So, let see what it is trying to get? It is looking for happiness and pleasures in its experiences with the outside world. However, it does not see all of them are impermanent, suffering and not self (do not belong to them).

Let’s see a simple example for easier understand.

A mother wants to have a child and she gets a beautiful, lovely little son. Let see what she thinks/sees:

• This is my beloved son. He is my son, he is forever my son. I will be with him forever (permanent)
• He is my happiness, my hope, my pleasures (happiness, pleasures)
• He is my son, he is mine (self)

Let see what she does not see

• She and her son are subject to old age, sickness and death, lamentation, pain, anger… He or she can die. (Impermanent)
• When her son gets sick or die or when he causes troubles…, she will suffer. (Suffering)
• When she or her son dies, she will lose him (or he may go away from her someday…) (not self)

Let see if she would lose this son, what would she do: She would want another one! (Of course, there are many options here, but just get a simple one for now)

Therefore, by not seeing suffering, she keeps trying to get more…In general, everything we are trying to get is impermanent, suffering and not self, and all of them will lead us to sufferings.

So, the first component of ignorance is “not knowing suffering”.

We see that name-and-form keeps turning back to volitional formations and build up its intention to get more (ex: the lady keeps trying to get another child after the first son was death) even if it was experiencing sufferings (ex: the lady experienced sufferings from the death of her first son). Why? Because it does not know what cause that sufferings!

So the second component of ignorance is “not knowing the cause of suffering”.

Because of ignorance, name-and-form keeps turning back to volitional formations to build up the intention of getting new pleasures and happiness. Why? Because that’s all it know how to get pleasures and happiness; it never experiences the true happiness born from seclusion, cessation, nibbana. It does not have the taste of nibbana which is the true happiness
.
So the third component of ignorance is “not knowing the cessation of suffering”.

Because all of those above, it has no escape from suffering; Therefore, the fourth component of ignorance is “not knowing the way leading to the cessation of suffering”

We can validate our understanding by comparing what we found with the definition of ignorance.

By definition, ignorance is: Not knowing suffering, not knowing the origin of suffering, not knowing the cessation of suffering, not knowing the way leading to the cessation of suffering. This is called ignorance. Therefore, we are in line with the system (Of course, we can directly take this definition from the system without going through all of those examples). However, we went through all that just to have better ideas why it is defined that way.

If we look at DO, we will see that suffering is the name-and-form that we are trying to renew. And that name-and-form is the five aggregates that we are continuously trying to renew (cling to). So, the five clinging aggregates are sufferings.

By definition, we know what is suffering: (First noble truth)

“Birth is suffering, aging is suffering, illness is suffering, death is suffering; union with what is displeasing is suffering; separation from what is pleasing is suffering; not to get what one wants is suffering; in brief, the five aggregates subject to clinging are suffering.” (SN 56.11)

From the second component of ignorance, by not knowing the cause of suffering, name-and-form keeps seeking for new pleasures and happiness. It acquires pleasures and happiness from its experiences from the outside world through contact. With contact as condition, feeling come to be; when it experiences pleasant feelings, it wants more by looping back to volitional formation and build up its intention to get more and renew itself. Even if it experiences unpleasant feeling from its experience, it will try to get a different one which it thinks “pleasant”. This is craving, and this is why from feeling as condition, craving comes to be.

Because name-and-form continuing seeking for happiness from the outside world, it will lead itself to suffering. This is the cause of suffering or we can say the cause of suffering is that craving (for happiness from the outside world leading to renew itself). This is the second noble truth.

From the third component of ignorance, because it does not know the cessation of suffering; therefore, it does not seek for it. However, to reach the cessation of suffering, it will need to end the cause that leads it to suffering which is craving. By our theorems, this is possible because “with cessation of craving, cessation of clinging, with cessation of clinging, cessation of existence, with cessation of existence, cessation of birth, with cessation of birth, cessation of suffering”. Therefore, this is proven by the system. (Third noble truth)

However, we will need to have a method to do so (fourth noble truth – The noble eight fold path). First, we will need to know the problem and the way to end it (right view). Now, let see what should we do?
Our purpose is to still that volitional formations feedback. Let’s remind us what is volitional formations again. It is the bodily volitional formation, the verbal volitional formation, the mental volitional formation. Therefore, to end (or still) this we will need to end those components (mental, verbal and bodily), so we will need right thought (to end/still mental volition), right speech (to end/still verbal volition), right action (to end/still bodily volition). However, to end or still all of these, we will need to have appropriate living environment. We cannot sit on an ant nest and be still and not craving for the pleasure of not being bitten. So, we will need right livelihood. However, we will also need to put in enough effort to make that happen. We will need to put in effort to get rid of the troubles and cultivate the benefits so we will eventually have less and less trouble to support the stilling of volitional formations (right effort). To do so, we will need to be vigilant to detect the volition in body, speech and mind (right mindfulness). When we can do so, the volitional formations will be still and be ended, and it will lead us to the true pleasures and happiness (right concentration).

Now we know why in the second noble truth, the cause of suffering is craving (but not ignorance). In the third noble truth, the cessation of suffering is the ending of that craving (not ending of ignorance). However, we can see that craving is actually what ignorance is about!

Another discovery from this analysis is that the weak link is the loopback from name-and-form -> volitional formations. This link caused by craving. This is where we can break the loop. We cannot break any other links from the DO chain that leading to dukkha because they all are dependent origination components.

I have tried to put down some of my understanding of dependent origination, and show how we can see the four noble truths and the noble eight fold path from DO. However, my English is very bad, and I often have trouble expressing my ideas, or using correct wordings or grammar, so please try to understand it with an open mind and ignore those mistakes and focus on the ideas and the method of investigation. Of course, this is not a completed explanation of DO. Hope that there will be better people who will benefit from this new approach, and continue perfecting it so that it can bring more benefits to every being.

My purpose is to share my new way of seeing DO with whoever has interest in it. I do not expect everybody will accept this new approach. There will be many errors in my understanding or approaches because I am just a simple lay person who learn and practice the Dhamma by himself. I do not have any teacher to correct my errors before sharing this to you, so you should be critical with the content, but have an open mind to see and try the new approach.

All I have tried to show here is just rough samples of how to see DO with this new approach. The method for investigation that I used is more important than what I understood. That’s what I hope for.

There are many more things that we can see using DO. Hope that you will continue exploring DO and find out for yourselves. Please share with the world what you found, so I can also learn from you and everybody can be benefit from it.

This is the end of this series of posts.

May this work benefit all beings.