Why is the forward sequence of Dependent Origination the wrong path? : An annotated translation of the Commentary to the Nidānasaṃyutta’s Discourse of the [Two] Paths

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Eng Jin Ooi

Abstract

In the Pāli Paṭipadā Sutta (Discourse of the [Two] Paths) of the Nidānasaṃyutta, the Buddha distinguishes two opposite paths of dependent origination (paṭicca-samuppāda); the forward sequence (anuloma) of dependent origination is the wrong path (micchāpaṭipadā), while the reverse sequence (paṭiloma) is the right path (sammāpaṭipadā). However, a question is raised as to why the former is called the wrong path: despite ignorance, there are also meritorious volitional formations (puññābhisaṅkhāra) and imperturbable volitional formations (āneñjābhisaṅkhāra) being generated. The commentary to the Sutta (Paṭipadāsuttavaṇṇanā) explains that actions or attainments rooted in the desire for success within the cycle of rebirth (saṃsāra) are not good enough to free a person from suffering. However, actions that are rooted in the aspiration for nibbāna, will eventually lead to liberation. This article provides an annotated English translation of the commentary to the Paṭipadā Sutta, with selected input from its sub-commentary (Nidānavagga-purāṇaṭīkā) and a brief outline of the philosophical tenets addressed in the text.

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How to Cite
Ooi, E. J. (2022). Why is the forward sequence of Dependent Origination the wrong path? : An annotated translation of the Commentary to the Nidānasaṃyutta’s Discourse of the [Two] Paths . Journal of the Philosophy and Religion Society of Thailand, 17(1). Retrieved from https://so04.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/parst/article/view/256630
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Research Article