Samudaya sacca

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Template:See Template:Buddhist term Samudaya sacca (Pali, also Samudaya saccã; Sanskrit: samudaya-satya) is the second of the four noble truths within Buddhist tradition. It refers to the origin or causes of dukkha (suffering).


Samudaya has several meanings. It is usually translated as "origin" or "source", but does also mean "whole", "combination" and junction".[1] According to James Woods, Template:Quote

Sacca, Sanskrit satya, means "truth" or "reality".

Thus, samudaya sacca is typically translated as the "truth of the origin" or "truth of the origin of suffering." It refers specifically to the origin or causes of dukkha (suffering).Template:Refn

Within the four noble truths

Within the context of the four noble truths, the origin (Pali: samudaya) of suffering (Pali: dukkha) is commonly explained as craving (Pali: tanha) conditioned by ignorance (Pali: avijja).Template:Sfn[web 1]Template:Refn This craving runs on three channels:Template:Sfn[2][3]

  • Craving for sense-pleasures (kama-tanha): this is craving for sense objects which provide pleasant feeling, or craving for sensory pleasures.
  • Craving to be (bhava-tanha): this is craving to be something, to unite with an experience. This includes craving to be solid and ongoing, to be a being that has a past and a future,[4] and craving to prevail and dominate over others.
  • Craving not to be (vibhava-tanha): this is craving to not experience the world, and to be nothing; a wish to be separated from painful feelings.[5]

Ignorance (Pali: avijja) can be defined as ignorance of the meaning and implication of the four noble truths.[6] On a deeper level, it refers to a misunderstanding of the nature of the self and reality.[7]

Another common explanation presents the cause of dukkha as disturbing emotions (Sanskrit: kleshas) rooted in ignorance (Sanskrit: avidya).Template:Refn In this context, it is common to identify three root disturbing emotions, called the three poisons,[8][9] as the root cause of suffering or dukkha. These three poisons are:

  • Ignorance (Sanskrit: avidya or moha): misunderstanding of the nature of reality; bewilderment.
  • Attachment (Sanskrit: raga): attachment to pleasurable experiences.
  • Aversion (Sanskrit: dvesha): a fear of getting what we don't want, or not getting what we do want.[10]

Within the Abhidharma

Within the Theravada Abhidharma teachings, the origin of dukkha is identified as the three unwholesome roots. The Pali terms for the unwholesome roots are:

The three unwholesome roots are referred to as the three poisons in the Mahayana tradition. The equivalent Sanskrit terms for these three kleshas are:

See also



  1. Sanskrit Dictionary for Spoken Sanskrit, samudaya
  2. Gethin (1998), p. 70
  3. Ajahn Sucitto (2010), Kindle Location 943-946
  4. Ajahn Sucitto (2010), Kindle Locations 966-979
  5. See the article Tanha for further citations and clarification.
  6. Ajahn Sucitto (2010), Kindle Locations 1125-1132.
  7. See the article Avidya (Buddhism) for further citations and clarification.
  8. Dalai Lama (1992), p. 4, 42
  9. Ringu Tulku (2005), p. 30.
  10. See the respective articles for citations and further clarification.

Web references




External links

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