Conditional arising

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The dependent arising or arising in dependence ( Sanskrit pratītya-samutpāda ; pi. Paṭicca-samuppāda ; Chinese  緣起 , Pinyin yuánqǐ , W.-G. yüan-ch'i ; Japanese. 縁 起 , engi ; hgl. 연기, yeongi ; tib. rten cing 'brel bar' byung ba ; viet. duyên khởi ) is considered to be one of the Buddha in Buddhismdiscovered law. It explains how the painful chain of rebirths comes about and how it is to be broken. Since the "conditional co-creation" is described by twelve members, it is also the twelve-link chain of dependent origination called (Skt. Dvādaśa-Nidana , dvādaśâṅgaḥ pratitya-samutpādaḥ , dvādaśa-pratitya-samutpāda ; Chinese  十二因緣 , Pinyin Shier Yinyuan , W.-G. shih-erh yin-yüan ; jap. 十二 因 縁 , jūni inside ; hgl. 십이 인연, sibi inyeon ; T. rten `brel yan lag bcu gnyis ; np nhị nhân duyên).

Text from the Pali canon

“At that time, the Blessed One was staying at the foot of the Bodhi tree in Uruvelá (today Bodhgaya ) on the bank of the Nerañjara River, just fully awakened. Thus the Blessed One sat at the foot of the Bodhi tree for seven days with crossed legs, experiencing the happiness of liberation (pi. Vimutti-sukha-paṭisaṃvedī ).

At the beginning of the first part of the night, the Blessed One thought through the chain of dependent origination forwards and backwards: depending on ignorance, formations arise, consciousness formations, mentality and physicality consciousness, spirituality and physicality the six sensory gates, and contact from the six sensory gates , from contact sensation, from sensation craving, from craving clinging, from clinging to habitual tendencies, from habitual tendencies, from birth , old age , death , sorrow, misery , pain , suffering and despair . In this way all this mass of suffering arises. Through the complete dissolution and annihilation of ignorance, the formations dissolve, through the dissolution of the formations consciousness dissolves, through the dissolution of consciousness spirituality and physicality dissolve, through the dissolution of spirituality and physicality the six sensory gates dissolve Through the dissolution of the six sensory gates, the contact dissolves, the dissolution of the contact dissolves sensation, the dissolution of the sensation dissolves the desire, the dissolution of the desire dissolves the attachment, the dissolution of the attachment habitual tendencies dissolve, through the dissolution of habitual tendencies, birth dissolves; through the dissolution of birth, old age, death, sorrow, misery, pain, suffering and despair dissolve. In this way the whole mass of suffering goes away.

Since the Blessed One had recognized this state of affairs, he spoke this sentence at that time:

If the truth really arises in a zealous, meditating, noble person, then all doubts vanish for him, for he sees the law of conditionality. "

The twelve-link chain of Dependent Origination

The twelve-link chain, in which the following always arises depending on the preceding, here in its simplest and most common form:

  1. Ignorance, ignorance, ignorance (Sanskrit अविद्या avidyā "ignorance", " ignorance "; pi. Avijjā ). Refers to ignorance of the Four Noble Truths and the impersonal process of Dependent Origination. From this arise
  2. Formations / designs / formations / preparation, intention to act (Sanskrit संस्कार saṁskāra , "preparation", "production", "processing", "decoration", "grinding", "care", "education"; "correctness", "correctness", "Perfection"; pi. Sankhāra ). Together with ignorance (avidya), it is the producer of karma . The formations are also called karmic formation forces. They can be wholesome (skt. Kuśala , pi. Kusala ), not wholesome (skt. Akuśala , pi. Akusala ) or neither-wholesome-nor-not-wholesome. The Sanskāra forms the basis for that
  3. Consciousness (Sanskrit विज्ञान vijñāna "knowing as", " knowledge ", correct knowledge, " knowledge "; pi. Viññana ), which holds the potential for renewed identification.
  4. Spirituality and physicality (Sanskrit नामरूप nāmarūpa name and form, name and shape; pi. Nāmarūpa ) are everything that forms the spiritual and physical nature of a newborn. Mind and body arise conditionally together.
  5. Six sensory gates (Sanskrit षडायतन ṣaḍāyatana "from the six Ayatana"; pi. Salāyatana ), these are eyes (seeing), ears (hearing), nose (smelling), tongue (tasting), body (touch) and mind (thinking).
  6. Contact (Sanskrit स्पर्श sparśa "touching in", "touching", "urgently in", "touching"; pi. Phassa ). Depending on the sense organ / mind and sense objects / mind objects, object consciousness arises, the meeting of the three is contact. E.g .: eye + shape & color + eye awareness = eye contact. Creates through contact
  7. Sensation (Sanskrit वेदना vedanāperception ”, “ sensation ,” “ feeling ”; “ suffering ”, “ pain ”; pi. Vedanā ). Three types of sensation: 1. pleasant, 2. unpleasant, 3. neither-pleasant-nor-unpleasant. From the sensation arises
  8. Desire, desire (Sanskrit तर्ष tarṣa "thirst", "greed", "desire" also tṛṣṇā ; pi. Tanhā ). It is the desire for being, for becoming, for identification; the 'I want' or 'I don't want' mind. Because of desire arises
  9. Clinging, thinking, grasping, identifying (Sanskrit उपादान, upādāna pi.). The story of the 'why' of desire, the distinctive awareness of “I and mine”, all thoughts, ideas, concepts and ideas. This leads to the
  10. Becoming process / habitual tendencies (Sanskrit भव bhava ; pi.), Both karmic actions ( kamma-bhava ) and their effects ( upapatti-bhava ) - often translated as 'being'. A personal 'archive' of habitual re-actions. These lead to
  11. Birth (Sanskrit जाति jāti , pi. “Birth”, “family”, “form of existence determined by birth”, “species”, “class”, “caste”) of an action. This can be mental, verbal or physical. Or: birth in a new existence (rebirth). Because of birth there is
  12. Old age and death, pain and lamentation, suffering, grief and despair (skt. Jarāmaranaśokaparidevaduḥkhadaurmanasyopāyāsāḥ , pi. Jarāmāranaṃ sokaparidevadukkhadomanassupāyāsā ).

The recognition of the dependent coexistence was, according to the Pali Canon, the result of the meditative practice of the historical Buddha and together with the Four Noble Truths forms the central Buddhist teaching statement. For the historical Buddha, the insight into this law meant awakening (skt., Pi. Bodhi ), his liberation (skt. Vimukti , pi. Vimutti ). It explains the human process of becoming without resorting to ideas of a creator or an eternal self.

One can analyze this twelve-link chain of dependent arising under different aspects.

Temporal: Members 1–2 belong to the previous life, while members 3–10 represent the conditions (3–7) and fruits (8–10) of the current life. 11–12 are part of future life. This explains the cycle of existence ( samsāra ).

Functional: Members 2–3 are potentials, members 4–7 are impersonal properties of the physical body and mind of every sentient being, 8–11 are the personal aspects.

Each member is at the same time conditioned by the preceding ones and again conditions for the following members.

While the Buddha in the early discourses of the Pali Canon points to the desire or “thirst” (pi. Tanha ) as the cause of entanglement in the cycle of rebirths , there he later emphasizes ignorance (pi. Avijjā ) as Cause so that for him there are two mutually dependent causes of suffering. The twelve-link chain of causes accordingly combines the two (last) causes of suffering in one concept.

The descriptions of Theravada and Mahāyāna Buddhism largely, but not completely, coincide. While the not-self of the Dhammas (moments of consciousness) is represented for the Theravada in the dependent co-arising, the Mahāyāna wants to point out the emptiness of all phenomena, which is just another concept. The Mādhyamikas, “representatives of the doctrine of the middle”, therefore equate the twelve-link chain of dependent arising with emptiness (Skt. Śūnyatā ).


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Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Mahāvagga, I. The great department, 1st chapter: The awakening