Points of Controversy

15.6. Of Decay ancl Death

Controverted Point: That the decay and death of spiritual things is itself spiritual.

Theravādin: Then you must be prepared to classify it with one of the approved spiritual things—Path, Fruit, Nibbāna, etc… , For instance, is the decay and death of the Stream-Winner’s Path the Path itself? If you deny, your proposition falls through. If you assent, you must also apply your proposition to all the other stages, and say, finally, that the decay and death of the fruit of arahantship is itself fruit of arahantship—which you may not. Nor will you be prepared to admit decay and death as identical with any one of the Factors of Enlightenment.

Mahāsaṅghikas: Then, is the decay and death of supramundane things a mundane thing? You deny. Then it must be supramundane.