Saṃyuktāgama

13. First Discourse on Gratification

Thus have I heard. At one time the Buddha was staying at Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s Park. At that time the Blessed One said to the monks:

“If living beings did not find gratification in bodily form, they would not get defiled by bodily form. Because living beings find gratification in bodily form, they are defiled by bodily form and attached to it. In the same way, if living beings did not find gratification in feeling … perception … formations … consciousness, they would not get defiled by consciousness. Because living beings find gratification in feeling … perception … formations … consciousness, they are defiled by consciousness and attached to it.

“Monks, if living beings did not experience the danger in bodily form, those living beings would not become disenchanted with bodily form. Because living beings experience the danger in bodily form, those living beings become disenchanted with bodily form. In the same way, if they did not experience the danger in feeling … perception … formations … consciousness, those living beings would not become disenchanted with consciousness. Because living beings experience the danger in feeling … perception … formations … consciousness, those living beings become disenchanted with consciousness.

“Monks, if for living beings there were no escape from bodily form, those living beings would not escape from bodily form. Because for living beings there is an escape from bodily form, those living beings escape from bodily form. In the same way, if for living beings there were no escape from feeling … perception … formations … consciousness, those living beings would not escape from consciousness. Because for living beings there is an escape from feeling … perception … formations … consciousness, those living beings escape from consciousness.

“Monks, as long as I had not understood as it really is the gratification in relation to the five aggregates of clinging as gratification, the danger as danger and the escape as escape, among gods, Māra, Brahmā, recluses, brahmins and the assemblies of gods and humans I was not liberated, had not gone beyond, was not released, was forever dwelling in mental distortion and was unable to declare of myself that I had attained supreme and right awakening.

“Monks, because I had understood as it really is the gratification in relation to the five aggregates of clinging as gratification, the danger as danger and the escape as escape, among gods, Māra, Brahmā, recluses, brahmins and the assemblies of gods and humans I was able to declare to have attained liberation, to have attained the going beyond, to have attained escape and to have attained liberation from the fetters, to be forever not dwelling in mental distortion and I was able to declare of myself that I had attained supreme and right awakening.”

Then the monks, hearing what the Buddha had said, were delighted and received it respectfully.