Death – Understanding the Inevitable

Majjhima Nikaya MN.9.21-23 Sammaadi.t.thi Sutta: Right View (AGEING AND DEATH) [spoken by Mahaathera Saariputta] (สัมมาทิฏฐิสูตร)

21. “When, friends, a noble disciple understands ageing and death, the origin of ageing and death, the cessation of ageing and death, and the way leading to the cessation of ageing and death, in that way he is one of right view, whose view is straight, who has unwavering confidence in the Dhamma and has arrived at this true Dhamma.

22. “And what is ageing and death, what is the origin of ageing and death, what is the cessation of ageing and death, what is the way leading to the cessation of ageing and death? The ageing of beings in the various orders of beings their old age, brokenness of teeth, greyness of hair, wrinkling of skin, decline of life, weakness of faculties-this is called ageing. The passing of beings out of the various orders of beings, their passing away, dissolution, disappearance, dying, completion of time, dissolution of the aggregates, laying down of the body–this is called death. So this ageing and this death are what is called ageing and death. With the arising of birth there is the arising of ageing and death. The cessation of birth there is the cessation of ageing and death. The way leading to the cessation of ageing and death is just this Noble Eightfold Path; that is right view, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.

23. “When a noble disciple has thus understood ageing and death, the origin of ageing and death, the cessation of ageing and death, and the way leading to the cessation of ageing and death, he here and now makes an end of suffering. In that way too a noble disciple is one of right view, whose view is straight, who has unwavering confidence in the Dhamma and has arrived at this true Dhamma.

Anguttaranikaaya AN.4.182: No Guarantee (โยธาชีววรรคที่ [๑๘๒])

Against four things, O Monks, there can be no guarantee, whether from an ascetic, a brahmin, a devaa or Maara or Brahmaa, or anyone else in the world.

What are these four things? That what is liable to decay should not decay; what is liable to illness should not fall ill; that what is liable to die should not die; and that no fruit should come forth from one’s own evil deeds, which are defiling, productive of re-becoming, fearful, having painful results, leading to future birth, decay and death.

Against these four things there can be no guarantee, whether from an ascetic, a brahmin, a deva or Maara or Brahmaa, or anyone else in the world.

Samyuttanikaaya SN.I.4.9: Maarasamyutta, Life Span (ปฐมอายุสูตรที่ ๙)

Thus I have heard. On one occasion the Blessed One was dwelling at Raajagaha in the Bamboo Grove, the Squirrel Sanctuary.

There the Blessed One addressed the Bhikkhus thus: “Bhikkhus!” “Venerable Sir!” those bhikkhus replied. The Blessed One said this: “Bhikkhus, this life span of human beings is short. One has to go on to the future life. One should do what is wholesome and lead the holy life for one who has taken birth there is no avoiding death. One who lives long, bhikkhus, lives a hundred years or a little longer.”

Then Maara the Evil One approached the Blessed One and addressed him in verse:

“Long is the life span of human beings,
The good man should not disdain it.
One should live like a milk-sucking baby:
Death has not made its arrival.”

[The Blessed One:]

“Short is the life span of human beings,
The good man should disdain it.
One should live like one with head aflame:
There is no avoiding Death’s arrival.”

Then Maara the Evil One, realizing, “The Blessed One knows me, the Fortunate One knows me,” sad and disappointed, disappeared right there.

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