The Three Things

March 2023 edition

The Three Things

Article summary

Once Samma SamBuddha said that there are these three things which cause to arise of a fully awaken Samma SamBuddha to this world and the noble Dhamma. If those three things don’t exist, none of this is happening. Not even this editorial. So, let’s see what are these three things and how it relates to our liberation!

It’s in the Sutta named “Tayodhamma” – The Three Things (Read the Full Sutta Here)   “Jāti ca jarā ca maraṇañca. Ime kho bhikkhave tayo dhammā loke na saṃvijjeyyuṃ, na tathāgato loke uppajjeyya arahaṃ sammāsambuddho, na tathāgatappavedito dhammavinayo leke dippeyya - Birth, Old Age, and Death. If these three things were not found, the Realized One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Samma SamBuddha would not arise in the world, and the teaching and training proclaimed by the Realized One would not shine in the world” 

{In Sutta Central – Ven. Bhikkhu Sujato’s translation for this Sutta, Jāti translated as rebirth which is also a possible meaning. But in this Sutta it means the general Birth. Birth of anything or anyone.  (}   

In here Samma SamBuddha trying to explain about the natural phenomenon which everyone & everything should face repeatedly over & over again.  So, even though it seems alright to translate Jāti as rebirth, it will give more profound meaning if we could just express the term “BIRTH” for Jāti.  Whether it is “RE” or not “The Birth” is a factor which one should look deeply with wisdom.  Whether it is one time or several times, “Birth” is something one should explore deeply.   It’s like when something or someone arises, it has to go through changes and comes to an end.    Whether it is living or non-living or even a situation, this nature is the only thing common to all those things.  Arise or Birth of a living and then changing towards to the end.  Arise or Birth of a non-living thing and then changing towards to the end.  Arise or birth of a situation and then changing towards to the end.  The beginning, The birth (Jāti) and the Changing towards the end (Jarā).  And finally, THE END (Maraṇañ).  As you can see, this cycle is visible in everything, everyone and every situation.  You just have to look deeply, and you will find this natural phenomenon in everything!  Whether it is for a longer period or even for a second or instant, this is the only cycle which is visible in everything.

To be honest, in another way, it's like we have given various names and labels to this nature.  We call "Self" is this same nature.  Whatever we call "Mine" is this same nature.  We identify as a "Situation" to this same nature.  Everything.  Everyone. End of the day, nothing but this nature only exists. So, if you see this default fault of your so-called existence, your search for the truth will begin!  That's where you are becoming a wise being who are not just rely on what is visible.  You identify a fraud system of your existence, and you begin to look for a solution.  This is how the journey begins and end by being liberated from this nature of "Birth, Changing, Death"!    

So, in this sutta named "Three Things" it says how one can develop the journey towards getting rid of this default fault "birth, changing and death" of our existence.  Let me summarize like this;

When you see the default issue of the whole system which is “Birth, Changing and Death” you seek for the eternal truth, the liberation hurriedly without being delayed.  You find a sense of shyness to do the wrong things, which are sinful. You feel fear for the sins.  That happens because of the default system error you identified in your existence which is “Birth, Changing and Death”.  So, basically now you are looking for the exit without being delay!

As long as you won’t notice the default issue, you were NOT listening to anyone higher or noble who guided you to see the truth.  You were so disrespectful towards them and were stubborn too.  And your friends were those who promote unwholesome actions, speech or thoughts because you believed in them and their belief.  But not anymore.  So, you eventually start giving up listening to your friends who promote unwholesome lifestyle, and you start listening to the one those who guide you to the wholesome activities.  Your respect towards the noble ones is developing now.   Now you are being able to destroy another three lower qualities of yours which are lack of faith, unkindness, sluggishness.  Now you planted the seed of faith and nurturing it enthusiastically by developing kindness.  And this leads to get rid of another 3 lower qualities, which are restlessness mixed up with arrogance, lack of restraint, and unethical conduct.  The lower quality of arrogance and interest of unethical conduct which lead you to be a person with lack of restraint made sure to keep you away from the noble ones.   But not anymore, now wanting to see the noble ones, wanting to hear the teaching of the noble ones, and do not have a fault-finding mind.  This leads you to have mindfulness, situational awareness with wisdom, and a well-focused mind by giving up the 3 lower qualities of lack of mindfulness, lack of situational awareness, a distracted mind.  As you can see, you are developing a mind which is freed from the frames you already had because of the delusional views you had earlier.  Your delusional views grew so well because of your unawareness of the three natures of "Birth, Changing, Death".  But being aware of the default issue of the existence, your mind opened up for a solution... an exit!  Now, look how that realization guide you to the eternal truth by opening you to new treasures!  You are no more following the wrong paths and your wisdom is developing to see the origin of everything.  You are developing your attention to the proper attention to see the origin. This energizes you more & more and your sluggishness to see the truth begins to vanish and your interest on liberation develops well.

Now, this well-developed qualities of yours guide you to listen more profoundly to the noble ones & their teachings for liberation.  In such occasion you realize what is Self-view and how this "Birth, Changing, Death" arise.  Because of the realization of how things origin and exists and ceased, you get rid of the skeptical doubts which you had almost about everything.  And as you also realize the path of liberation, you see how it is impossible to attain any liberation through any kind of ritual or conduct.  When this realization happens, you have entered to the path of stream entry where you are fully aware about what is Desire, Hatred & Ignorance or Unawareness means.  Now you get the understanding of the origin of desire, hatred & delusion.  This leads you to cease the desire, hatred & delusion by understanding the connection between these 3 and the 3 things named "Birth, Changing, Death"!  And that's it.  This is the end of the default system error.  Your exit from the vicious cycle!  Your liberation!  The Nirvana!       

As you can see, instead of looking for what is the teaching of Samma Sambuddha or other noble ones.  First check withing whether you have realized the depth of the three things which call “Birth, Changing, Death” as the default system error!  Because that realization will create your journey to the liberation!  That understanding will guide you to the noble ones & noble teachings!  If it is other way around, you will always end up with the false teachings!

Rajitha Viduransi | Kelaniya, Sri Lanka