Under the rose-apple tree

Under the rose-apple tree

Thursday, 12 April 2018

MMK Chapter One: Exploration of Causes

pratyaya-parīkṣā nāma prathamaṁ prakaraṇam |
Chapter One: Exploration of Causes

na svato nāpi parato na dvābhyāṁ nāpy ahetutaḥ |
utpannā jātu vidyante bhāvāḥ kva-cana ke-cana ||1.1||
Neither from self nor from another, nor from both, nor also from no cause, have any things at all ever arisen, anywhere.

na hi svabhāvo bhāvānāṁ pratyayādiṣu vidyate |
avidyamāne svabhāve parabhāvo na vidyate ||1.2||
For, among causes et cetera, the self-existence of things is not found. Where intrinsic existence of a thing unto itself is not found, extrinsic existence of a thing unto others is not found.

catvāraḥ pratyayā hetur ārambaṇam anantaram |
tathaivādhipateyaṁ ca pratyayo nāsti pañcamaḥ ||1.3||
The four cornerstones of causation are: the primary cause, the objective support, the gapless and this -- it being exactly so -- predominance.There is no fifth cornerstone.

kriyā na pratyayavatī nāpratyayavatī kriyā |
pratyayā nākriyāvantaḥ kriyāvantaś ca santy uta ||1.4||
Action does not have a cause. Nor is action without causes. Nor are the causes dispossessed of action. Possessed of action, indeed, they very much are.

utpadyate pratītyemān itīme pratyayāḥ kila |
yāvan notpadyata ime tāvan nāpratyayāḥ katham ||1.5||
It is said that these are causes, because depending on them [action] arises. Insofar as [action] does not arise, how can they not be non-causes?

naivāsato naiva sataḥ pratyayo 'rthasya yujyate |
asataḥ pratyayaḥ kasya sataś ca pratyayena kim ||1.6||
A cause is not workable for an object, either a real and present one or a non-existent one. Of what non-existent [object] is there a cause? And to a real and present [object], what use would a cause be?

na san nāsan na sad-asan dharmo nirvartate yadā |
kathaṁ nirvartako hetur evaṁ sati hi yujyate ||1.7||
When, beyond the existent, beyond the non-existent, beyond existence and non-existence, the Dharma is unfolding, how is it workable that a primary cause is causing it – when it is just like this – to unfold?

anārambaṇa evāyaṁ san dharma upadiśyate |
athānārambaṇe dharme kuta ārambaṇaṁ punaḥ ||1.8||
This real and present Dharma, here and now, one is taught, is utterly beyond objective support. What purpose then, when the Dharma is beyond objective support, does objective support serve?

anutpanneṣu dharmeṣu nirodho nopapadyate |
nānantaram ato yuktaṁ niruddhe pratyayaś ca kaḥ ||1.9||
Where dharmas are unborn, destruction is not possible, and so the gapless is not workable. And what, when destroyed, is a cause?

bhāvānāṁ niḥsvabhāvānāṁ na sattā vidyate yataḥ |
satīdam asmin bhavatīty etan naivopapadyate ||1.10||
If not for the real and present reality of freedom of things from self-existence, it would never be possible [to say]: “That being so, this is.”

na ca vyasta-samasteṣu pratyayeṣv asti tat phalam |
pratyayebhyaḥ kathaṁ tac ca bhaven na pratyayeṣu yat  ||1.11||
Again, when the effect does not exist in separate causes or in combinations of causes, how can that which is not in causes come to exist from causes?

athāsad api tat tebhyaḥ pratyayebhyaḥ pravartate |
phalam apratyayebhyo 'pi kasmān nābhipravartate ||1.12||
Or if, even without existing, it emerges from those causes, why does that effect not manifest itself even from non-causes?

phalaṁ ca pratyaya-mayaṁ pratyayāś cāsvayaṁ-mayāḥ |
phalam a-sva-mayebhyo yat tat pratyaya-mayaṁ katham  ||1.13|| 
[Or if] the effect is made from causes, while the causes are not self-made, how, from the [causes that are] not self-made, can there be that effect which is made from causes?

tasmān na pratyaya-mayaṁ nāpratyaya-mayaṁ phalam |
saṁvidyate phalābhāvāt pratyayāpratyayāḥ kutaḥ  ||1.14||
On these grounds, an effect made from causes or from non-causes is not found. In the absence of an effect, how are there causes and non-causes?

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