Saṃyutta Nikāya 12

Connected Discourses on Causation

58. Name-and-Form

At Savatthī. “Bhikkhus, when one dwells contemplating gratification in things that can fetter, there is a descent of name-and-form. With name-and-form as condition, the six sense bases come to be…. Such is the origin of this whole mass of suffering.

“Suppose, bhikkhus, there was a great tree, and all its roots going downwards and across would send the sap upwards. Sustained by that sap, nourished by it, that great tree would stand for a very long time. So too, when one lives contemplating gratification in things that can fetter, there is a descent of name-and-form…. Such is the origin of this whole mass of suffering.

“When, bhikkhus, one dwells contemplating danger in things that can fetter, there is no descent of name-and-form. With the cessation of name-and-form comes cessation of the six sense bases…. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering.

“Suppose, bhikkhus, there was a great tree. Then a man would come along bringing a shovel and a basket. He would cut down the tree at its foot … he would winnow the ashes in a strong wind or let them be carried away by the swift current of a river. Thus that great tree would be cut off at the root, made like a palm stump, obliterated so that it is no more subject to future arising.

“So too, bhikkhus, when one dwells contemplating danger in things that can fetter, there is no descent of name-and-form…. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering.”