Nagarjuna: The Heart of Interdependent Origination

The Heart of Interdependent Origination

Nagarjuna’s Commentary to The Heart of Interdependent Origination

An Introduction to Nagarjuna’s Heart of Interdependent OriginationAll Buddhist schools have denied the existence of the self as an identical permanent and immutable substance which experiences the results of former actions. They have also universally rejected the notion of a supreme god. They have however accepted the relative reality of pre-existence and subsequent rebirth as well as the provisional efficiency of actions (Karma). Those who adhere to the doctrine of the self have opposed this view, because as they contend, denial of an identical permanent and immutable self controverts the efficiency of actions and the doctrine of rebirth. The Buddhist schools have replied to this objection with the doctrine of Interdependent Origination. The doctrine of Interdependent Origination has been expounded at length by the Buddha in numerous discourses, most notably in the Salistambasutra (1) wherein the famous and often cited example of the Interdependent Origination of the sprout appears.

Commentaries to the discourse were composed by Buddhist masters, such as Nagarjuna and Kamalashila. As the Madhyamaka system is based upon an interpretation of Interdependent Origination, this doctrine has been central to its inception and development. Nagarjuna, the foremost exponent of the Madhyamaka, has written extensively on the subject of Interdependent Origination. Among his works are counted his commentary to the Salistambasutra,

Aryasalistambakarikanamamahayanastratika and the twentysixth

chapter of The Foundation Stanzas of the Middle Way, and its commentary the Dvadasangaparikanamamahaynasauatiprakara as well as The Heart of Interdependent Origination and its autocommentary. The Sanskrit text of The Heart of Interdependent

Origination is no longer extant, therefore the text we used for the translation is the Tibetan version which appears in the Tan Gyur (mDo XVII). The Tibetan translation was made in the first quarter

of the ninth century by Jinamitra, Danasila, Silendrabodhi and Yeshes de, under the patronage of the then Tibetan king, Khri-sdesrong-tsan. The Heart of Interdependent Origination is widely

attributed to Nagarjuna. In this case, the traditional attribution has been largely accepted by modern scholars, not least on the strength of the fact that Chandrakirti cites a stanza and a half from the work in The Clearly Worded (Prasannapada) his commentary to The Foundation Stanzas of the Middle Way. Nonetheless, it seems reasonable to assume that only the first five of the seven stanzas which currently constitute the text in the Tibetan Canon actually belong to the original. This assumption follows from the fact that the auto-commentary covers only the first five stanzas, and from the fact that the sixth and seventh stanzas may be found in Reasoning: The Sixty Stanzas and in The Ornament of the Special Commitments (Abhisamayalankara). The Heart of Interdependent Origination, although short, is undoubtedly an important work, because of the axiological nature of

the topic which it treats. The value of a declamatory and didactic statement on the part of Nagarjuna with regard to the central doctrine of the Buddhist tradition, Interdependent Origination, can

scarcely be questioned given the polemical nature of works like The Foundation Stanzas of the Middle Way and Emptiness: The Seventy Stanzas. Therefore, the treatment accorded to the doctrine

of Interdependent Origination by Nagarjuna in The Heart of Interdependent Origination has to be seen as having a formative function for the whole of the Mahayana tradition. The doctrine of Interdependent Origination has from the very first been of paramount importance for practitioners of the Buddhist faith. In the Salistambasutra, the Lord, the Buddha has said, “The monk who sees Interdependent Origination, sees the Dharma. He who sees the Dharma, sees the Buddha.” While all the schools of Buddhism have without exception accepted the teaching of Interdependent Origination, it has been interpreted characteristically by the various schools. The Mahayana Buddhist accepts the interpretation of Interdependent Origination as it was expounded by Nagarjuna and Asanga, the founders of the Middle Way (madhyamaka) and the Mind Only (cittamatra) schools respectively. Both adopt the threefold cyclical classification of the twelve constituents of Interdependent Origination from The Discourse of the Ten Stages (Dasabhumikasutra) (2). In The Heart of Interdependent Origination, Nagarjuna explains that the two alternatives of permanence and annihilation or the denial of continuity are avoided through the teaching of Interdependent Origination. Nagarjuna, moreover, declares that Interdependent Origination is equivalent to Emptiness. Therefore Interdependent

Origination is the very foundation of Nagarjuna’s conception of the ultimate truth. The text, particularly if read along with the autocommentary as the stanzas alone are extremely schematic, reveals an orientation rather different from that of Reasoning: The Sixty Stanzas and Emptiness: The Seventy Stanzas. It is also markedly different in its object and purpose from other well known works of Nagarjuna like The Foundation Stanzas of the Middle Way. Firstly, it is clear that The Heart of Interdependent Origination is an elementary text meant to introduce the rank novice to the central doctrine of Buddhism specially as it is understood by the Mahayana tradition. In so far as it is elementary in nature, it is not primarily directed against the views of the Buddhist Realists. On the other hand the other texts included in this book as well as The Foundation Stanzas of the Middle Way are clearly aimed at establishing the Madhyamaka philosophy in the minds of the pre-Madhyamaka

Buddhists. The Heart of Interdependent Origination is directed at a general audience hardly, if at all, familiar with Buddhist tenets. This much is obvious from a number of important clues. In the first

place, there appears a lengthy list of erroneous causes of the world of experience which includes the favorite doctrines of several nonBuddhist schools. The Sakhya doctrine of origination of the world through the interaction of primordial matter and spirit is alluded to as is the doctrine of the Materialists who maintained that chance was the prime mover in the creative process. The doctrine of the Naiyayikas who were also known as advocates of time, Kalavadins is also mentioned. A similar list of erroneous causes of the origination of the world also appears in Nagarjuna’s The Good Hearted Letter but there too the text is admittedly an elementary and introductory one. Later, we find a rhetorical question posed regarding the identity of the self and the ostensible creative function of a supreme

self or god. Thereby with a single deft stroke, Nagarjuna manages to reply both to the doctrine of an identical self and to that of a creator god. Both doctrines were undoubtedly popular, but neither can in

any way be identified with any Buddhist school. Even the much maligned Personalists (Pudgalavadins) of the middle period of the development of the final Buddhist conception of personality cannot

be supposed to be the object of this critique, particularly as neither they nor any other Buddhist school ever went so far as to advocate the creative function of a supreme self. In the light of these

considerations, it seems apparent that the text is chiefly meant to establish the Buddhist doctrine of Interdependent Origination implying as it does from the Madhyamaka standpoint, the continuity of cause and effect, the avoidance of alternative views and ultimately Emptiness. A case can also be made for asserting that The Refutation of Objections (Vigrahavyavartani) is also largely directed against non-Buddhist. In the case of that text, the opponent is usually thought to be a Naiyayika because of the

frequent appearance of the Nyaya categories of logic. However, it should be recalled that The Refutation of Objections also contains references to wholesome and unwholesome factors which would

seem to implicate the Buddhist realist system of soteriology. Perhaps the most important message of the text is to be found in its insistence upon the cyclical nature of the twelve constituents of Interdependent Origination. This, it seems to us, is a significant improvement upon the linear scheme which is found in most Abhidharma or Vigrahavyavartani treatments of the subject. There, as is well known, the twelve are also divided into three categories, however the division is much less sophisticated and also less

satisfactory for a number of reasons which we will attempt to detail. The rather simplistic schematization of the twelve constituents essayed by the Buddhist Realists merely assigns the first two constituents, ignorance and volitions, to the past life. The next eight from consciousness to becoming to the present life and the final two, birth and old age and death, to the future life. This linear and serial arrangement leaves several questions unanswered. Firstly, what happens next? Are we to assume that after birth and old age and death which as we have seen belong to the future life, ignorance and volitions simply take over again and so repeat the three lives procedure? Then what about the present life? Is it reasonable to suppose that ignorance and volitions which are said to belong to the past life simply disappear? Although scholastic solutions may have been proposed in an attempt to solve any or all of these problems, on the whole, we cannot help but conclude that the three lives scheme is at best rather artificial. On the other hand, the division of the twelve into the three categories of afflictions, actions and sufferings which removes them from a serial progression and thereby detemporalizes them

altogether has definite logical and psychological advantages. We would argue that the doctrine of Interdependent Origination is essentially synonymous with that of the Four Noble Truths, and

most patently with the first two, the truths of suffering and its origin. The latter two truths, cessation and the path can be easily extrapolated from the constituents of Interdependent Origination merely by deconstructing them. In as much as the movement toward liberation is agreed to be a negative process, that is to say, an undoing of the knot of Samsara rather than the achievement of anything concrete, this is perfectly plausible. If our assumption is correct, then the truth of the cause of suffering is expressly stated to consist of afflictions and actions, and so Nagarjuna’s scheme is in complete harmony with this conception. Besides, let us take a look for a moment at how afflictions and actions function to produce

suffering. The afflictions: ignorance, craving and clinging, in the obscuration and perturbation. The absence of aversion or ill will which often occurs listed along side ignorance and craving or attachment need not bother us, because craving and clinging which are states of emotional attachment are obviously complimented by their opposite, that is aversion, ill will or anger. These states of

intellectual and emotional confusion naturally impel one to actions, for the simple reason that an intellectual and emotional imbalance as a matter of course leads to volitional or intentional actions meant to secure the misapprehended objects of desire, or alternatively, remove the equally misapprehended objects of aversion. The first of the components of actions according to the scheme of the twelve presented in The Heart of Interdependent Origination are volitions. Even taken by themselves, volitions have a static as well as a dynamic facet. The static and dynamic aspects are reflected in the alternative translations of the original term samskara: mental formations, predispositions, volitions etc. Taken together with becoming which here represents the critical force which impels one to continued rebirth, the actions category clearly constitutes the specific cause of particular forms of experience, all of which taken together may be classified as sufferings. Now if we examine for a moment the seven constituents which comprise the category of sufferings in Nagarjuna’s scheme we will see that it includes: consciousness, name and form, the six sense spheres, contact,

feeling, birth and old age and death. All of the foregoing clearly make up the stuff of ordinary experience, the conscious as opposed to the unconscious, or semi conscious categories of afflictions and

actions. The effect, in general, of such experience is to reinforce, not to dissolve the causes of the experience of suffering. Therefore, it is entirely reasonable to suppose that from these seven, in turn, three originate, that is to say, the experience of ordinary sentient beings, if left unchecked by appropriate techniques, naturally contributes to the perpetuation of the wheel of existence, the circle of Samsara. In The Heart of Interdependent Origination, Nagarjuna firmly establishes causality as the basis of the phenomenal world, but this affirmation is emphatically linked with the declaration of the equivalence of causality and Emptiness. From factors (which are) only empty, empty factors originate.4 This brief and unelaborated declaration reveals the central theme of Nagarjuna’s philosophy.

The commentary discusses the Emptiness of factors in terms of the absence in them of self and that which pertains to a self (atma-atmiya). The first term is generally understood by all who have had some experience with Buddhist thought, but the latter is sometimes a source of puzzlement. In fact, the term really refers to the aggregates or general constituents which are believed to compose the personality. If we look even closer at the meaning of the phrase, “that which pertains to a self”, we will see that it also

implies the manifold of factors (dharmas). The eighteenth chapter of The Foundation Stanzas of the Middle Way, for instance, bears the title Atmadharmaparikha in the Tibetan and Chinese renderings of the name of the chapter. The fact is that the aggregates are just what the name implies, that is aggregates of factors, and so the factors are just fragments of experience which collectively receive

the name aggregates. Therefore, the insubstantiality of the self in the context of this text is not restricted to the not-self of early Buddhism, but is also extended to include the insubstantiality of

factors (dharmanairatmya)or Emptiness itself. Although Nagarjuna does not allow any misapprehension to enter the mind of his interlocutor regarding the emptiness of factors, his concern in The Heart of Interdependent Origination is to emphasize the equipoise between causality and Emptiness on the

phenomenal level and particularly, in the sphere of psychological and even moral reality. While the factors are empty, they nonetheless do originate after a fashion. If they did not, and the relationship between cause and effect were wholly discarded, it would result in the extreme alternative of nihilism which is morally and existentially abhorrent, because it leads to aggravated states of suffering. Therefore, in the world, factors originate from causes. The advocates of an identical self which may be assumed to belong by and large to the Brahmanical or priestly tradition in Indian philosophy would argue for the existence of an identical self which could, in their view, safeguard the psychological and moral continuity of a series of existences, but this is equally untenable. An identical self could never respond to the contortions imposed upon the personality by the effects of intentional actions. As Candrakirti was to put it later, “Such an identical self would necessarily be a non-entity, a flower growing in the sky” with no relevance to action and consequence. But what then exactly is the relationship between the empty factors which function as causes and the equally empty factors which appear as effects? Nagarjuna supplies a list of examples by means of which the unfathomable but all too familiar phenomenon is to be understood. The list includes such well known favorites as the instance of the kindling of a lamp from a flame, but it also introduces some rather novel examples such as the first, that of oral instructions which is elaborated in the commentary. The example has a peculiar relevance if we recall that the whole text is set in the context of a master’s instruction of a disciple. The conclusion is that from a cause, an effect originates, but whether cause and effect are identical or different is inexpressible. The notion of inexpressibility is central to the concluding portions of the text, although it is perhaps not as obvious in Nagarjuna’s other works. So much so that an outstanding scholar of

Madhyamaka philosophy some years ago was lead to state in print that “unlike the Vedanta, the Madhyamaka never sets up inexpressibility as a truth value.” According to him, Nagarjuna opts

for absolute negation instead. The statement would of course not have been made if the author had been familiar with and had accepted the very clear declaration in The Heart of Interdependent

Origination. Actually, the advocacy of inexpressibility in so far as the functioning of cause and effect in the phenomenal world is concerned isn’t all that strange to the Madhyamaka. Candrakirti, in

elucidating phenomenal causality, and causality can of course only be phenomenal, describes the Madhyamaka point of view by likening it to that of the man in the street or the farmer in the field.

Such a person simply takes cognizance of the fact that having formerly planted a seed, a son is born, or alternatively, a tree has sprung up. He by no means goes into the abstract and quite useless

business of speculating about whether the seed and the son or tree are identical or different. The problem however did not go away altogether and teachers of Buddhism have always had to resort to

examples of a similar kind to illustrate the continuity of causality in the absence of identity. An Empress of China, for instance, is said to have been convinced of the doctrine only when shown the

progression of flames appearing in individual lamps lit successively and then being asked whether the first and last flame were identical or different. What answer could there be other than

inexpressibility? The auto commentary to The Heart of Interdependent Origination also contains, early on, two more analogies which we think it worth calling to the attention of the reader. Not because

they are altogether unknown, although the first is better known than the second, but rather because they illustrate two complimentary currents in the development of Buddhist thought.

The first belongs to the analytical current characteristic of much of the Buddhist Realist tradition and perhaps best represented in the first book of the Pali Abhidhamma Pitaka, The Collection of Factors

(Dhammasangani). It is the example of a chariot, or better, the constituents of a chariot. It is best known as a stock analogy for explaining the doctrine of not-self in the context of the theory of the aggregates or factors. It appears in The Questions of King Milinda for this very purpose and it represents those analytical, or to use a modern expression, reductionist tendencies in Buddhist philosophy.

The second and less well known analogy is that of the roof beams of a house which depend one upon another. This analogy reflects the relational or synthetic current in Buddhist philosophy. Like the analytical current, it has its Canonical origins, in this case, in The Book of Relations (Patthana) the last of the seven books of the Pali Abhidhamma Pitaka. In modern terms, it represents a reaction to a totally analytical or reductionist approach to reality and introduces an holistic vision which comes more and more to the fore in Mahayana and Madhyamaka philosophy. The appearance of these two analogies in the auto commentary, almost casually as it would seem, is nonetheless significant, because it signals the importance of these two currents in Buddhist thought, currents which not to put too fine a point on it, were hardly duplicated in the West until the Twentieth century.

In conclusion, perhaps a word or two about the style of the composition of the text might be in order. In keeping with the elementary nature of the work, the style is hardly as complex or technical as that of texts like Emptiness: The Seventy Stanzas not to mention The Foundation Stanzas of the Middle Way. The greater part of the text is strictly didactic, and it is in this manner that the threefold division supported by Nagarjuna is presented. Nonetheless, the latter portions of the work do contain a couple of

arguments ad absurdum and the use of simile or example also features as it does so prominently in Reasoning: The Sixty Stanzas. It might almost be said that the text taken as a whole

together with its auto commentary is Upanishadic in tone. However it would be a mistake to read too much into this resemblance. Although the style and content of the text may appear at first glance

similar to the famous Upanishadic dialogue wherein the notion of actions and their effects in future lives, in other words, Karma, is first introduced into the Brahmanical tradition, the rigorously logical and analytical approach of the Buddhist thinker remains unmistakable. Notwithstanding its elementary character, The Heart of Interdependent Origination is still a work of systematic philosophy, or if the reader prefers, psychology belonging to the Abhidharmic tradition. The text was first translated by me together with an old and valued colleague many many years ago, and we must admit that in general we have not made any significant changes to the original translation. The text is simply too precise and concise to in its form to allow for any creative transformation as the euphemism goes. Despite the consistency of the version presented here with earlier translations of the text done by us, we would like to underline the fact that each time we look at The Heart of Interdependent Origination again, we find new levels of meaning, new possible implications and new pregnant suggestions. All of this is an eloquent testimony to the depth of Nagarjuna’s thought and to his skill in expressing profound and far reaching intuitions in a very few words.

1 Ramanan, K.V.,Nagarjuna‘s Philosophy, Bharatiya Vidya Prakashan, Varanasi, India, 1971, p.25

2 Rahulabhadra is also known as the Mahasiddha Saraha

3 Takakusu, J., (Tr.) A Record of the Buddhist Religion as Practiced in India and the Malay Archipelago (AD 671-695) by I–Tsing, Munshiram Manoharlal, Delhi, India,1966, p. 162

The Stanzas of The Heart of Interdependent Origination

Salutations to Manjusrhi The Youthfully Transformed.

I. The twelve individual constituents of Interdependent Origination which were taught by the Sage are wholly included in three: afflictions, actions and suffering.

II. The first, eighth and ninth are afflictions, the second and tenth are actions, and the remaining seven are sufferings. Thus the twelve factors are included in three.

III. From the three, two originate; from the two, seven originate; and from these seven, in turn, the three originate. Thus the wheel of existence revolves again and again.

IV. The whole world is cause and effect; excluding this, there is no sentient being. From factors (which are) only empty, empty factors originate.

V. Through the examples of: oral instruction, a lamp, a mirror, a seal, a sun-crystal, a seed, sourness and sound, the wise should understand the non-transmigration as well as the re-emergence of

the aggregates.

VI. Those who impute origination even in regard to very subtle entities, being unwise, have not seen the meaning of conditioned origination.

VII. Hence, there is nothing to be denied and nothing to be affirmed. See the real rightly, (for) one who sees the real is released.

The Heart of Interdependent Origination of Acarya Nagarjuna is complete herein.

Nagarjuna’s Commentary to The Heart of Interdependent Origination

The disciple who possesses renunciation and is desirous of hearing, attentive, retentive, appreciative and able to dispel imputation, having drawn near to the master, asked thus about the doctrine of the Tathagata. In what are The twelve individual constituents of Interdependent Origination which were taught by the Sage included, for I beg to see and study (them). The master, having understood him to ask about the essence of those (twelve) factors, thus spoke these lucid words from the stanza, (these twelve) are wholly included in three: afflictions, actions and sufferings. Thus, twelve is ten plus two. Constituents alone are individual as the constituents of a chariot have been shown to be, therefore, individual constituents. The Sage, because mighty of body, voice and mind, (while) taught by the Sage is synonymous with demonstrated and elucidated (by him). The twelve constituents do not originate from causes (like): space, primordial matter, natural order, spirit, nor through dependence upon others, god, time, intrinsic being,5 chance, circumstance, free will and so on. They are interdependently originated. As the roof beams of a house depend upon one another, so these twelve individual constituents are wholly included in three: afflictions, actions and sufferings. Wholly, means all without remainder.

Which are afflictions, which actions and which sufferings?

How and in what (categories) are these constituents of Interdependent Origination included?

II. The first, eighth and ninth are afflictions. Of the twelve constituents, the first is ignorance, the eighth craving and the ninth clinging. Know these three to be afflictions. If it is asked, which are actions? (Then) the second and tenth are actions. the second is volitions and the tenth becoming. Know these two factors to be included in actions. And the remaining seven are sufferings. (Five) constituents are included in afflictions and actions. Know the seven which remain to be included in sufferings. Thus, consciousness, name and form, the six sense spheres, contact, feeling, birth and old age and death. The word, and, (serves) to include (sufferings which are not listed among the seven constituents), that is, the sufferings of separation from the loved, meeting with the despised and of frustrated desires. Thus, the twelve factors are included in three. Therefore know these twelve factors as afflictions, actions and

sufferings. The (Tibetan) particle ni (which occurs between the word factors) and the phrase are included in three thus indicates that there remains part of the sentence (which is wanting), that is,

the constituents demonstrated in the discourse are complete herein.

Thus, it has been determined that there are none apart from these. Just so, but please demonstrate what these afflictions, actions and sufferings originate from.

III. From the three, two originate. From the three which are afflictions: ignorance, craving and clinging, two which are actions, volitions and becoming, originate. From the two (which are actions) seven originate. Thus (those seven) sufferings demonstrated above, (that is: consciousness, name and form, the six sense spheres, contact, feeling, birth and old age and death). From these seven, in turn, the three originate which are afflictions. Thus again, from the three (which are) afflictions originate two (which are) actions. Thus the wheel of existence revolves again and again.

(In the world of) becoming there are three (spheres): (those of) desire, form and the formless (sphere). Ordinary people have become like a wheel which revolves without rest. The (Tibetan) particle, ni,

(which occurs between the phrase the wheel of existence and the phrase revolves again and again) thus indicates a sense of uncertainty. That is, while a wheel revolves serially (each point on the circumference following upon the preceding one), in the three spheres, it (does) not happen thus. (Therefore) uncertainty is indicated. Who is called the sentient being,6 the god of all individual

beings? How is his creation?

IV. The whole world is cause and effect, excluding superimposition, there is no sentient being. That which is superimposed does not exist when examined, so it is not fitting that what is just nominally existent should exist substantially.

If so, then who transmigrates from this world to the next?

From this to the next world, not so much as an atom transmigrates, however, from factors (which are) only empty, empty factors originate. Entities are without self and that pertaining to a self,7 thus, afflictions and actions have become the causes. From these five factors (ignorance, craving, clinging, volitions and becoming) which are empty, originate sufferings without self and that pertaining to a self. The seven empty factors (consciousness, name and form, the six sense spheres, contact, feeling, birth and old age and death) are alleged8 to be effects. Such is the purport. Thus, what is without self and that pertaining to a self is neither self nor that pertaining to a self. However, from factors without self originate factors in their intrinsic being without self. Thus, understand it as it has been demonstrated.

From factors in their intrinsic being without self originate only factors in their intrinsic being without self. What are examples of these?

V. Through the examples of: oral instructions, a lamp, a mirror, a seal, a sun-crystal9 a seed, sourness and sound, know also (what is in its) intrinsic being without self, as well as the subsequent existence. For instance, if there were transference of the instructions from the master’s mouth to the disciple, then the master would become deprived of the instructions. Therefore, there is no transference. Nor are the instructions of the disciple from any other (source),because if so they would be without cause. As with the instructions from the masters mouth, so in a like manner, at the point of death, the mind does not transmigrate to the subsequent existence, because the error of permanence would follow. Nor does

the subsequent existence originate from any other (source), because the error of being without a cause would follow. As the master’sinstructions are the cause of those of the disciple, (but whether)

those (of the disciple) are identical with those (of the master) or different, is inexpressible. So in a like manner, (whether) the mind at the point of death and the mind which belongs to (the subsequent) birth are identical or different is inexpressible. Similarly, from a flame, an oil lamp (is kindled); from a form, an image is produced in a mirror; from a seal, an impression, from a sun-crystal, fire, from a seed, a sprout, from the juice of a sour fruit, saliva is engendered (even in the mouths of others’); or yet again

from a sound, an echo is produced. Thus, the wise should understand the non-transmigration as well as the re-emergence of the aggregates. There are aggregates of form, feeling, perception, volitions

and consciousness. Their re-emergence means that from an extinguished cause another effect originates, (but) from this world to the next, not so much as an atom transmigrates. Therefore the

wheel of becoming is produced by the propensity for erroneous imagination. The phrase “as well as” indicates opposition. (That is), the opposite of the re-emergence of the aggregates should (also) be

understood. One who understands entities to be impermanent, full of suffering, empty and insubstantial will not be deluded in regard to entities. Free from delusion, attachment will not originate; free from attachment, aversion will not originate; free from aversion, actions will not be performed; free from actions, clinging to entities will not originate; free from clinging to entities, becoming will not be engendered; free from becoming, rebirth will not occur; and free from rebirth suffering of the body and mind will not originate. Thus the erroneous views, the alternatives of permanence and annihilation etc., are dispelled. (In this regard) there are two stanzas.

VI. Those who impute origination even in regard to very subtle entities, being unwise, have not seen the meaning of conditioned origination.

VII. Hence, there is nothing to be denied and nothing to be affirmed. See the real rightly, (for) one who sees the real is released.

The commentary to The Heart of Interdependent Origination is complete herein.

Translated and corrected by the Indian master Jinamitra,

Danasila, $ilendrabodhi and (the Tibetan translator) Bande Yeshe de.

http://www.ecst.csuchico.edu/~dsantina/wayofnag.pdf

 

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