The Law of Causation

Thus have I heard:(*)

Gautama Buddha, the Exalted One was dwelling near Savatthi at Jeta Grove in Anathapindika’s Park.  There, the Exalted One, Gautama Buddha addressed the Bhikkhus, saying:


‘Yes, Lord! replied those Bhikkhus.

The Exalted One said:

‘I will teach you, Bhikkhus, the Law of Causation.  Do ye listen to it.  Apply your minds. I will speak.’

‘Even so, Lord, replied the Bhikkhus.’ 

Then thus spake Gautama Buddha, the Exalted One:

“What is the Law of Causation, Bhikkhus?  It is this:

Actions are determined by Ignorance; by Actions is determined Consciousness; by Consciousness are determined Name-and-Shape; by Name-and-Shape are determined Sense; by Sense is determined Contact; by Contact is determined Feeling; by Feeling is determined Craving; by Craving is determined Grasping; by Grasping is determined Becoming; by Becoming is determined Birth; by Birth is determined Age-and-Death, Sorrow and Grief, Woe, Lamentation, and Despair.  Such is the arising of all this mass of Suffering.

But from the utter fading out and ending of Ignorance comes also the ending of Actions; from the ending of Actions comes the ending of Consciousness; from the ending of Consciousness comes the ending of Name-and-Shape; from the ending of Name-and-Shape comes the ending of Sense; from the ending of Sense comes the ending of Contact; from the ending of Contact comes the ending of Feeling; from the ending of Feeling comes the ending of Craving; from the ending of Craving comes the ending of Grasping; from the ending of Grasping comes the ending of Becoming: from the ending of Becoming comes the ending of Birth; from the ending of Birth, comes the ending of Age-and-Death, Sorrow, and Grief, Woe, Lamentation, and Despair.  Such is the ending of all this mass of  Suffering.” 

                                                                                                    (S.N. ii 3-4)


Foot Note: (*) – Patica-samuppada.


[“Some Sayings of the Buddha – According to the Pali Canon”, translated from the Pali by F.L.Woodward, Oxford University Press, London, 1925].

To be continued