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The word ‘dukkha’ in context

The word ‘dukkha’ in context
6/13/16 4:54 AM
In the Pali scriptures, the word ‘dukkha’ is found in (at least) three contexts. To understand the Pali scriptures, it is essential to discern/differentiate between these three contexts. These three contexts are:

(i) ‘Dukkha’ as mental suffering, such as stress, torment, anguish, neurosis, unhappiness, lack of peace, etc.  This 1st context of ‘dukkha’ is found in the Four Noble Truths, where all ‘dukkha’ is summarised as attachment (‘upadana’) to the five aggregates. This context of ‘dukkha’ is shown in the following verses: 

‘I am’ is a construing. ‘I am this’ is a construing. ‘I shall be’ is a construing. ‘I shall not be’… is a construing. Construing is a disease, construing is a cancer, construing is an arrow. By going beyond all construing, he is said to be a sage at peace.MN 140 
He is seized with the idea that ‘I am form’ or ‘Form is mine.’ As he is seized with these ideas, his form changes & alters, and he falls into sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress & despair over its change & alteration.SN 22.1
By & large, Kaccayana, this world is in bondage to attachments, clingings & biases. But one such as this does not get involved with or cling to these attachments, clingings, fixations of awareness, biases or obsessions; nor is he resolved on ‘my self.’ He has no uncertainty or doubt that just suffering, when arising, is arising; suffering, when passing away, is passing away. SN 12.15
Why now do you assume ‘a being’? Mara, have you grasped a view? This is a heap of sheer constructions: Here no being is found. Just as, with an assemblage of parts, The word ‘chariot’ is used, So, when the aggregates are present, There’s the convention ‘a being.’ It’s only suffering that comes to be, Suffering that stands and falls away. Nothing but suffering comes to be, Nothing but suffering ceases. SN 5.10

Please note: in SN 12.15 & SN 5.10 above, ‘dukkha’ means ‘suffering’ because it refers to the arising of suffering related to ‘self-view’.

(ii) ‘Dukkha’ as ‘unsatisfactoriness’, the 2nd of the Three Characteristics, i.e. the inability of conditioned impermanent things to bring true or lasting happiness. This context of ‘dukkha’ is shown in the following verses: 

“What do you think of this, O monks? Is form permanent or impermanent?”“Impermanent, O Lord.”“Now, that which is impermanent, is it unsatisfactory or satisfactory?”“Unsatisfactory, O Lord.”“Now, that which is impermanent, unsatisfactory, subject to change, is it proper to regard that as: ‘This is mine, this I am, this is my self’?”“Indeed, not that, O Lord.” SN 22.59
Then, friend Yamaka, how would you answer if you are thus asked: A monk, a worthy one, with no more mental effluents: what is he on the break-up of the body, after death?Thus asked, I would answer, ‘Form is impermanent… Feeling… Perception… Fabrications… Consciousness is impermanent. That which is impermanent is unsatisfactory. That which is unsatisfactory has ceased and gone to its end.Very good, my friend Yamaka. Very good.SN 22.85

Please note: as the verse from SN 22.85 refers to the aggregates of an arahant, ‘dukkha’ here cannot mean ‘suffering’ or ‘stressful’ since  arahants are free from suffering. 

The verse below contains both contexts (i) and (ii): 

All conditioned things are unsatisfactory — when one sees this with wisdom, one turns away from suffering. This is the path to purification.Dhammapada 278

Please note: as stated above, as insight into ‘unsatisfactoriness’ is developed & increases, ‘suffering’ reduces & ceases.  Thus the experience of one kind of ‘dukkha’ eliminates the experience of the other kind of ‘dukkha’, as described below: 

O monks, the well-instructed noble disciple, seeing thus, gets wearied of form, gets wearied of feeling, gets wearied of perception, gets wearied of mental formations, gets wearied of consciousness. Being wearied he becomes passion-free. In his freedom from passion, he is emancipated. SN 22.59

(iii) ‘Dukkha’ as painful feelings. This context of ‘dukkha’ is shown in the following verses: 

…whatever feeling he feels, whether pleasant or painful or neither pleasant or painful, he abides contemplating (observing) impermanence in those feelings, contemplating (observing) fading away (of attachment), contemplating (observing) cessation (of suffering), contemplating (observing) relinquishment (letting go). Contemplating (observing) thus, he does not cling to anything in the world. When he does not cling, he is not agitated, he personally attains Nibbana…. Briefly, it is in this way…that a bhikkhu is liberated in the destruction of craving, one who has reached the ultimate end, the ultimate security from bondage, the ultimate holy life, the ultimate goal…MN 37
Here a bhikkhu is an arahant, one whose taints are destroyed, the holy life fulfilled, who has done what had to be done, laid down the burden, attained the goal, destroyed the fetters of being, completely released through final knowledge. However, his five sense faculties remain unimpaired, by which he still experiences what is agreeable and disagreeable and feels pleasure and pain. It is the extinction of attachment, hate, and delusion in him that is called the Nibbana-element …Iti 44
When the Blessed One had entered upon the rainy season, there arose in him a severe illness, and sharp and deadly pains came upon him. And the Blessed One endured them mindfully, clearly comprehending and unperturbed. DN 16

The verse below contains both contexts (i) and (iii): 

He is seized with the idea that ‘I am feeling’ or ‘Feeling is mine.’ As he is seized with these ideas, his feeling changes & alters, and he falls into sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress & despair over its change & alteration. SN 22.1

In summary, as shown in the above verses, only the ‘dukkha’ of attachment & egoism is real ‘suffering’. The ‘unsatisfactoriness’ of conditioned things (dukkha lakkhana) and painful feelings (dukkha vedana) are not suffering (unless they are attached to). 



RE: The word ‘dukkha’ in context
6/13/16 7:54 AM as a reply to Nicky.
Buddha has pains or was in pain in order to teach by expedient ways. Seriously pain can be solved knowing how to, and can understanded the cause of it and never set conditions for it to arise in the future.