Reply To: Good Discourse on Anicca, Dukkha, Anatta


Sybe wrote: “anicca – in the end, we can maintain nothing the way we like – is not difficult to see or understand but it is very difficult to live with, to really accept, to have peace in the heart with it.”

That is an important point.
– It is easy to “express in words” what is anicca.
– However, UNDERSTANDING is different.
– If one really understood what is meant by anicca, one would “drop everything and work towards stopping the rebirth process.”

One analogy that I can give pertains to smokers or drug addicts.
– They have read enough things about how bad those activities are.
– But they have not COMPREHENDED the consequences of such activities.

I had a friend who smoked and he and I had many discussions where I tried to persuade him to stop smoking. He was well-educated and knew all about the dangers of smoking. But he thought somehow he would be able to bypass such bad consequences.
– Later on, he had several surgeries to remove parts of his lungs. In the end, most of his lungs were gone and he was on oxygen. Then he died a miserable death.

Another example from the Tipitaka is where Ven. Ananda told the Buddha that Paticca Samuppada was easy to understand. But the Buddha admonished that Ven. Ananda was nowhere close to such an understanding. Of course, later on Ven Ananda attained the Arahanthood after comprehending it better.

By the way, Paticca Samuppada and Tilakkhana are inter-related.
– The Buddha said that “one who understands Paticca Samuppada understands Buddha Dhamma.”
– Therefore, it is a good idea to make sure one understands Paticca Samuppada.
– In essence, Paticca Samuppada explains how one makes one’s own future rebirths in different realms.
– This is why I am doing a systematic series of posts on that: “Paticca Samuppāda – Not ‘Self’ or ‘No-Self’