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Is the samsara itself and anicca are nicca?

The question of the permanence of Samsara occurs to me from the question. Is the mark of impermanence is permanent? Of course for those who attain Nibbana and have seen the world through 3 marks of existence Samsara is nicca and probably never existed. However, from the Samsaric point of view, I think that there is no guaranty and probably it will not come to the fact that every being will attain Nibbana so is does not mean that Samsara as a box for conditions marked by the three signs of existence and marks itself are nicca?

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Saṃsāra is not a place that you inhabit—it’s your subjective reality. You don’t exist in saṃsāra, it is your existence.

To end existence (or more accurately, to realise that existence is a perversion of perception), is to end saṃsāra.

The “saṃsāric point of view” you’re referring to assumes that one can have a “view from nowhere” into objective reality. The Buddha’s teaching only deals with one’s subjective experience (which happens to be the only thing one can have direct access to), and has very little to say about an objective world “outside”.

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AN4.77 Unthinkable

“Mendicants, these four things are unthinkable. They should not be thought about, and anyone who tries to think about them will go mad or get frustrated. What four?

The scope of the Buddhas …

The scope of one in absorption …

The results of deeds …

Speculation about the world …

These are the four unthinkable things. They should not be thought about, and anyone who tries to think about them will go mad or get frustrated.”

I’ll just leave that here. :slight_smile:

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Anicca is a permanent characteristic of conditioned experience (samsara). But nibbana is unconditioned and permanent. Even in the early stages experience should be categorised as two types- that which is conditioned on the one hand, and that leading to nibbana on the other. These are known as conventional and ultimate reality, and exist concurrently. Even for those who have attained experience of the unconditioned, there still remains the conditioned. When belief in the self is eliminated, the use of it in daily life is maintained (The construction of a self is dependent on a belief in permanence of conditioned experience):

“Truly wise, he’s gone beyond such thoughts.[1] That monk still might use such words as “I,” Still perchance might say: “They call this mine.” Well aware of common worldly speech, He would speak conforming to such use.[2]”—SN 1.25

Most lay Buddhists are in fact governed by mundane right view (MN 117), the skillful use of conditioned phenomena. But unlike the arahant in the quote, western lay Buddhists fail to separate their experience, which includes knowledge/ experience of transcendent right view. It’s not until this separation is done that they enter the reality of the middle way with its insights and responsibilities.

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Oh, and welcome to the forum @Saranga :slight_smile: Wishing you most happy and fruitful time on this wonderful board. :slight_smile:

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You are contemplating the wrong scope here. “Anicca is nicca”, this is a thought, an idea, an object. Anicca applies to that thought, as it is arising and last for a bit only, vanish. Reappear in another time and so on.
Once the thought is seen as anicca, the content of thought of course goes without saying anicca too.

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I think we can also distinguish between two kinds of thinking about the world according to the intention and integrity of the thinker. Those who stubbornly try to give meaning where it is not, and those who analyze and asking in the sake of dismissing false thoughts and concepts to put the mind on the right path. The former actually leads to madness and frustration. This second, to refine the view, getting even more familiar with the concepts and maybe one day to liberation :slight_smile: I believe that thanks to all your answers I’m getting slightly closer to the second

Thanks again everyone for your wise answers and thank you @Invo friend for your warm welcome :blush:

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Yes, but thing is this particular question is one of the philosophical ones that are paradoxical. I don’t remember the sutta but I think I read somewhere that Buddha stated it is one of questions that cannot be answered.

Of course all conditioned phenomena are anicca as long as they exist. When they cease to exist, nothing applies.

But as to entire samsara, Buddha would like us to switch our attention from this speculation towards realisation of Nibbana. Clinging to views is ayoniso manasikara - unwise attention. This very question is ayoniso manasikara.

Everyone has to end thier own path, and with stilling of all activity of their mind (sabbe sankhara samatho), this very question and need for answer cease to exist. In spirit of Buddha teachings, answer to this question “does not apply”.

I think it is related to simile of the arrow. We don’t need to ask who shot the arrow (what is ontological nature of conditioned reality), just take it out. And this is yoniso manasikara - wise attention.

MN72

So I have heard. At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery.

Then the wanderer Vacchagotta went up to the Buddha and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, he sat down to one side and said to the Buddha:

“Master Gotama, is this your view: ‘The cosmos is eternal. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘The cosmos is not eternal. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘The world is finite. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘The world is infinite. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘The soul and the body are the same thing. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘The soul and the body are different things. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘A Realized One exists after death. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘A Realized One doesn’t exist after death. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘A Realized One both exists and doesn’t exist after death. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Then is this your view: ‘A Realized One neither exists nor doesn’t exist after death. This is the only truth, other ideas are silly’?”

“That’s not my view, Vaccha.”

“Master Gotama, when asked these ten questions, you say: ‘That’s not my view.’ Seeing what drawback do you avoid all these convictions?”

“Each of these ten convictions is the thicket of views, the desert of views, the trick of views, the evasiveness of views, the fetter of views. They’re beset with anguish, distress, and fever. They don’t lead to disillusionment, dispassion, cessation, peace, insight, awakening, and extinguishment. Seeing this drawback I avoid all these convictions.”

“But does Master Gotama have any convictions at all?”

“The Realized One has done away with convictions. For the Realized One has seen: ‘Such is form, such is the origin of form, such is the ending of form. Such is feeling, such is the origin of feeling, such is the ending of feeling. Such is perception, such is the origin of perception, such is the ending of perception. Such are choices, such is the origin of choices, such is the ending of choices. Such is consciousness, such is the origin of consciousness, such is the ending of consciousness.’ That’s why the Realized One is freed with the ending, fading away, cessation, giving up, and letting go of all identifying, all worries, and all ego, possessiveness, or underlying tendency to conceit, I say.”

“But Master Gotama, when a mendicant’s mind is freed like this, where are they reborn?”

“‘They’re reborn’ doesn’t apply, Vaccha.”

“Well then, are they not reborn?”

“‘They’re not reborn’ doesn’t apply, Vaccha.”

“Well then, are they both reborn and not reborn?”

“‘They’re both reborn and not reborn’ doesn’t apply, Vaccha.”

“Well then, are they neither reborn nor not reborn?”

“‘They’re neither reborn nor not reborn’ doesn’t apply, Vaccha.”

“Master Gotama, when asked all these questions, you say: ‘It doesn’t apply.’ I fail to understand this point, Master Gotama; I’ve fallen into confusion. And I’ve now lost even the degree of clarity I had from previous discussions with Master Gotama.”

“No wonder you don’t understand, Vaccha, no wonder you’re confused. For this principle is deep, hard to see, hard to understand, peaceful, sublime, beyond the scope of logic, subtle, comprehensible to the astute. It’s hard for you to understand, since you have a different view, creed, preference, practice, and tradition.

Well then, Vaccha, I’ll ask you about this in return, and you can answer as you like.

What do you think, Vaccha? Suppose a fire was burning in front of you. Would you know: ‘This fire is burning in front of me’?”

“Yes, I would, Master Gotama.”

“But Vaccha, suppose they were to ask you: ‘This fire burning in front of you: what does it depend on to burn?’ How would you answer?”

“I would answer like this: ‘This fire burning in front of me burns in dependence on grass and logs as fuel.’”

“Suppose that fire burning in front of you was extinguished. Would you know: ‘This fire in front of me is extinguished’?”

“Yes, I would, Master Gotama.”

“But Vaccha, suppose they were to ask you: ‘This fire in front of you that is extinguished: in what direction did it go—east, south, west, or north?’ How would you answer?”

“It doesn’t apply, Master Gotama. The fire depended on grass and logs as fuel. When that runs out, and no more fuel is added, the fire is reckoned to have become extinguished due to lack of fuel.”

“In the same way, Vaccha, any form by which a Realized One might be described has been cut off at the root, made like a palm stump, obliterated, and unable to arise in the future. A Realized One is freed from reckoning in terms of form. They’re deep, immeasurable, and hard to fathom, like the ocean. ‘They’re reborn’, ‘they’re not reborn’, ‘they’re both reborn and not reborn’, ‘they’re neither reborn nor not reborn’—none of these apply.

Any feeling … perception … choices … consciousness by which a Realized One might be described has been cut off at the root, made like a palm stump, obliterated, and unable to arise in the future. A Realized One is freed from reckoning in terms of consciousness. They’re deep, immeasurable, and hard to fathom, like the ocean. ‘They’re reborn’, ‘they’re not reborn’, ‘they’re both reborn and not reborn’, ‘they’re neither reborn nor not reborn’—none of these apply.”

When he said this, the wanderer Vacchagotta said to the Buddha:

“Master Gotama, suppose there was a large sal tree not far from a town or village. And because it’s impermanent, its branches and foliage, bark and shoots, and softwood would fall off. After some time it would be rid of branches and foliage, bark and shoots, and softwood, consisting purely of heartwood. In the same way, Master Gotama’s dispensation is rid of branches and foliage, bark and shoots, and softwood, consisting purely of heartwood.

Excellent, Master Gotama! … From this day forth, may Master Gotama remember me as a lay follower who has gone for refuge for life.”

I hope this helps. :slight_smile:

You’re welcome! (pun intended) :slight_smile:

With Metta :yellow_heart: :slight_smile:

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What I understand is as follows;

Samsara is anicca. Impermance is not a mark of it but one of 3 true natures (Dhammas) of Samsara.

3 signs appear based on impermanent Samsara.

As long as Samsara goes (even to heavenly abode or Brama plane), there will be those 3 signs.

But, as the original body Samsara itself is anicca, true colors of it are also anicca.

Thanks and regards,

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there was a question here recently about whether universal laws are permanent: Impermanence vs math theorem

@Invo
That’s totally true and it helps a lot !! Thank you
Every turning attention into yoniso manasikara is worth its weight in gold and I think that’s is the main purpose
of Kaliyanamittas and this board.

It’s nice also to notice that Buddha came to this conclusion from ayonisomanasikara(as a Bodhisatta) Vacca was asking that question from ayonisomanasikara and my question came also from ayonisomanasikara. I think that everyone is starting from the question „What is that arrow?” and what helps to understand that the question itself is wrong and that this is ayonisomanasikara is vitakka-vicara. I think skillfull vittaka-vicara is what defines whether we go to madness and frustration with ayonisomanasikara or turn it into yonisomanasikara.and we all together as Kalyanamittas are strengthening that process through the word of another. Correct me if I ‘am wrong please :blush:

@prabhath , @paul1 , @Jacky, @ZawNyunt , @turntables
Your answers bring me to the conclusion that my way of thinking was incorrect because I was asking this question from putting samsara in terms of both in my experience and beyond As some objective place full of impermanent conditions rather than my experience fueled by grasping on things. If there is an option to log out of this experience by not adding fuel, it obviously makes both samsara and even the 3 signs of existence impermanent. @Invo And what does not add fuel is yonisomanasikara, which is the fruit of the change of perception from grasping to letting go

This is my first shy post here and I am grateful of your understanding and wise words. Thank you much and with metta ! :pray: :pray: :green_heart: :green_heart:

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I want to disassociate my post from any connection with the millennial notion that impermanence is purely mental. Impermanence needs to be developed from observing the body and physical phenomena both internally and externally as a cycle of beginning, maturity and ending. It is much easier to perceive this with physical objects and exerts a much stronger influence on the mind.

"Or, he abides contemplating the nature of arising in the body, or he
abides contemplating the nature of passing away in the body, or he
abides contemplating the nature of both arising and passing away in
the body "----MN 10 Satipatthana sutta

The Buddha’s own response to impermanence developed from seeing the external physical forms of old age, sickness, and death, which motivated the development of the path.

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Exactly right, Sir!
Those strong Samvega motivated the Prince Siddharsa to give up all worldly sensual things and to find the path of freedom from old age, unwellness and death (permanance free from insatifactoriness (dukkha)).
Let me quote dpd21-32 of Dhammapada:

Heedfulness is the path to the Deathless. Heedlessness is the path to death. The heedful die not. The heedless are as if dead already.

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