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‘Nibbåna and Anattå’ was published in abbreviated form: the text reproduced here is taken from the author’s typescript, which may be regarded as the definitive version. The essay first appeared in The Maha Bodhi, in two parts. Part one appeared in the December 1953 issue, pp. 416-423, and included all of Part I and the opening section of Part II. Footnotes include the author’s later comments, written in pencil on the typescripts. Footnotes belonging to the original texts are indicated by the symbol *. Those footnotes or parts thereof which are in square brackets are editorial.


Nibbåna and Anattå1

Atthaπgatassa na pamå~am atthi, yena naµ vajju, taµ tassa n’ atthi, sabbesu dhammesu sam¨hatesu sam¨hatå vådapathå pi sabbe ti. (Suttanipåta, Upas⁄vamå~avapucchå [Sn 1076]) Of one who’s passed away there is no measure Of him there’s naught whereby one may say aught; When once all things have wholly been removed, All ways of saying, too, have been removed.

i. nibbåna, attå & anattå It is a common error to suppose that a negative quantity is merely nothing, and that therefore, somehow or other, it ‘does not exist’. A negative quantity describes the operation of subtraction: it expresses the difference between an earlier and a later state. Suppose there are eight oranges in a pile, and three of them are taken away and eaten, then five will be left; and by comparing the pile before the oranges were removed with the pile after they were removed we can say that the later pile is the earlier pile ‘minus three oranges’. The difference of the two piles is expressed as a negative quantity, but no-one would say that the difference ‘does not exist’. Even if all the oranges are taken away and there is nothing left, a comparison gives the difference as minus eight, not as nothing; and, again, the difference is not a fiction. In much the same way, a statement that nibbåna, or extinction, is negative, that it is a destruction or an absence or cessation, does not mean that 1.  superseded – This article is out of date and, from p. 332 onwards, seriously mistaken. The earlier part, though not wrong, needs re-writing. Ñå~av⁄ra. 12.iii.65.


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it ‘does not exist’, nor does it mean that it is something mythical or unreal, nor that it is nothing; it simply means, as we shall see, that nibbåna is the essential difference between an earlier state and a later, between an ordinary living being and an Arahat. What has the Buddha said about nibbåna? We can hardly find a fuller description than the following Sutta affords. Vuttaµ hetaµ bhagavatå vuttamarahatå ti me sutaµ. Dve-må bhikkhave nibbånadhåtuyo. Katamå dve? Saupådiseså ca nibbånadhåtu anupådiseså ca nibbånadhåtu. Katamå ca bhikkhave saupådiseså nibbånadhåtu? Idha bhikkhave bhikkhu arahaµ hoti kh⁄~åsavo vusitavå katakara~⁄yo ohitabhåro anuppattasadattho parikkh⁄~abhavasaµyojano sammadaññåvimutto. Tassa ti††hanteva pañcindriyåni, yesaµ avighåtattå manåpåmanåpaµ paccanubhoti, sukhadukkhaµ pa†isaµvediyati. Tassa yo rågakkhayo dosakkhayo mohakkhayo, ayaµ vuccati bhikkhave saupådiseså nibbånadhåtu. Katamå ca bhikkhave anupådiseså nibbånadhåtu? Idha bhikkhave bhikkhu arahaµ hoti kh⁄~åsavo vusitavå katakara~⁄yo ohitabhåro anuppattasadattho parikkh⁄~abhavasaµyojano sammadaññåvimutto. Tassa idheva bhikkhave sabbavedayitåni anabhinanditåni s⁄tibhavissanti, ayaµ vuccati bhikkhave anupådiseså nibbånadhåtu. Imå kho bhikkhave dve nibbånadhåtuyoti. Etam-atthaµ bhagavå avoca, tatthetaµ iti vuccati:

Duve imå cakkhumatå pakåsitå nibbånadhåt¨ anissitena tådinå ekå hi dhåtu idha di††hadhammikå saupådiseså bhavanettisaπkhayå anupådiseså pana samparåyikå yamhi nirujjhanti bhavåni sabbaso Ye etad-aññåya padaµ asaπkhataµ vimuttacittå bhavanettisaπkhayå te dhammasårådhigamå khaye ratå pahaµsu te sabbabhavåni tådino ti

Ayam-pi attho vutto bhagavatå iti me suttan-ti. (Itivuttakaµ, Dukanipåto, II,7)


nibbåna and anattå

I heard this said by the August One, said by the Arahat. ‘There are, monks, two Extinction Elements. Which are the two? The Extinction Element with Remainder2 and the Extinction Element without Remainder. Which, monks, is the Extinction Element with Remainder? Here, monks, a monk is an Arahat, one whose cankers are destroyed, who has lived the life, done what was to be done, laid down the burden, achieved his own welfare, destroyed attachment to being, one who is free through knowing rightly. There remains in him just the five faculties; through their being undemolished he suffers what is agreeable and disagreeable, he experiences what is pleasant and painful. It is his destruction of lust, hate, and delusion, monks, that is called the Extinction Element with Remainder. And which, monks, is the Extinction Element without Remainder? Here, monks, a monk is an Arahat, one whose cankers are destroyed, who has lived the life, done what was to be done, laid down the burden, achieved his own welfare, destroyed attachment to being, one who is free through knowing rightly. All his feelings, monks, not being delighted in here and now, will become cold: it is this, monks, that is called the Extinction Element without Remainder. These, monks, are the two Extinction Elements.’ The August One said those words. This also he said: hese two Extinction Elements are made plain T By the Untrammelled One, the Saint, the Seer: Here, through destruction of what to being leads, One Element with Remnant still, in life; And one without Remainder as yet to come Wherein beings (= existences) shall entirely cease. The minds of those who know this unformed state Are free, through destruction of what to being leads: The Teaching’s heart attained, such ones rejoice In destruction, all beings laid aside. These words, too, spoken by the August One, I heard thus.

2.  [The typescript reads ‘Basis Left’ and ‘becoming’ throughout. These are crossed out in pencil and ‘Remainder’ and ‘being’, respectively, written over them in pencil.]


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The five khandhå, or aggregates, which constitute a living being together with his entire experience of the world, are in a condition of perpetual change. They are continually arising and passing away, and though the body may appear to alter slowly, the changes of the mind can be seen to follow each other in rapid succession; and so long as råga, dosa and moha, or lust, hate and delusion, have not been destroyed, the five aggregates continue to arise life after life. Rågaµ appahåya dosaµ appahåya mohaµ appahåya na parimuccati jåtiyå… (Aπguttara, II,i,6) Without putting aside lust, hate, and delusion, one is not free from birth… An Arahat is one who succeeds in destroying, once for all, his lust, hate, and delusion: this destruction, as we have seen, is known as saupådiseså nibbånadhåtu, or the Extinction Element with Remainder. The remaining basis—due to former lust, hate, and delusion—comprises the Arahat’s five faculties—eye, ear, nose, tongue, and body—and permits his experiences of pleasant and painful sensations while he yet lives. He does not, however, delight in, nor is he affected by, these various feelings, since he has destroyed lust, hate, and delusion; and when he dies his feelings cease. That is to say: his five faculties break up at death, and, being rid of lust, hate, and delusion, he is free from birth; the faculties, therefore, will not again come into existence, and there can consequently be no fresh sensations dependent upon them—in other words, his feelings ‘will become cold’: Seyyathåpi bhikkhave telañca pa†icca va††iñca telappad⁄po jhåyeyya, tasseva telassa ca va††iyå ca pariyådånå anåhåro nibbåyeyya. Evam eva kho bhikkhave bhikkhu kåyapariyantikaµ vedanaµ vediyamåno Kåyapariyantikaµ vedanaµ vediyåm⁄ti pajånåti J⁄vitapariyantikaµ vedanaµ vediyamåno J⁄vitapariyantikaµ vedanaµ vediyåm⁄ti pajånåti, kåyassa bhedå uddhaµ j⁄vitapariyådånå Idheva sabbavedayitåni anabhinanditåni s⁄tibhavissant⁄ti pajånåt⁄ti. (Vedanå Saµyutta, 7,12) Just as, monks, an oil lamp burns dependent upon oil and wick, and simply through the coming to an end of its oil and wick, being without sustenance, it is extinguished; so indeed, monks, when a monk feels


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a feeling that the body has come to an end he understands ‘I feel a feeling that the body has come to an end’, and when he feels a feeling that life has come to an end he understands ‘I feel a feeling that life has come to an end’, and he understands ‘With the breaking up of the body and the coming to an end of life, all feelings, not being delighted in, here and now will become cold’. Not only are feelings extinguished at the death of an Arahat, but the entire five aggregates, being inseparable, no longer arise: abhedi kåyo, nirodhi saññå, vedanå s⁄tibhaviµsu sabbå, v¨pasamiµsu saπkhårå, viññå~aµ attham agamå ‘ti. (Udåna, VIII,9) The body broke up, perception ceased, all feelings became cold, Formations subsided entirely, consciousness passed away. This is called anupådiseså nibbånadhåtu, or the Extinction Element without Remainder. The important thing to notice is that both the Extinction Elements are either destruction or cessation. The Extinction Element with Remainder is destruction of lust, hate, and delusion: it is the destruction, and not the remainder—the faculties—nor the sensation dependent upon it, that is called the Extinction Element. (In much the same way it is the absence of disease that is called ‘health’, and not the body itself, which can only be said to ‘possess health’ or to ‘be healthy’.) This destruction, furthermore, is permanent, since lust, hate, and delusion, once destroyed, can reappear neither in this lifetime nor hereafter: and also, since the presence of these three things is necessary for mental suffering to arise, this destruction, or Extinction Element, is pleasant, in the sense that absence of mental distress is pleasant. (Bodily suffering, as we have seen, is not affected so long as the faculties remain.) With the Extinction Element without Remainder, the remainder—the faculties—, which was not destroyed earlier, now breaks up, and the five aggregates finally cease to arise. This Extinction Element too—final cessation—is permanent, and it is pleasant in the sense of complete absence of all feelings whatsoever, mental or bodily: Tatra kho åyasmå Såriputto bhikkh¨ åmantesi, ‘sukhaµ idaµ åvuso nibbånaµ, sukhaµ idaµ åvuso nibbånan’ ti. Evaµ vutte åyasmå Udåyi åyasmantaµ Såriputtaµ etad avoca:—


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Kiµ pan’ ettha åvuso Såriputta sukhaµ, yad ettha natthi vedayitan ti? Etad eva khv ettha åvuso sukhaµ, yad ettha natthi vedayitaµ. (Aπguttara, IX,34) Then the Venerable Såriputta addressed the monks, ‘It is extinction, friends, that is pleasant; it is extinction, friends, that is pleasant.’ When this was said, the Venerable Udåyi said to the Venerable Såriputta, ‘But what, friend Såriputta, is pleasant herein, since herein there is no feeling?’ ‘Just this, friends, is pleasant herein, that herein there is no feeling.’ Thus, neither of the Extinction Elements is stated as containing, or consisting of, all or any of the five aggregates; both are stated in terms of absence of undesirable things; both are permanent and pleasant. Nibbåna then, or extinction, is negative, as ‘minus three oranges’ is negative: but just as there must have been a pile of oranges in the first place before we can say ‘minus three oranges’, so there must have been a living being full of lust, hate, and delusion, before we can say ‘nibbåna’. Nibbåna is not nothing: it is cessation of the process of3 existence. Bhavanirodho nibbånaµ, bhavanirodho nibbånan ti. (Aπguttara, X,7) Extinction is cessation of being! Extinction is cessation of being! And is this not annihilation? So, indeed, it will appear to anyone who believes that there is something permanent and unchanging, a lasting self, to be annihilated: Siyå nu kho bhante ajjhattaµ asati paritassanå ti.—Siyå bhikkh¨ti Bhagavå avoca. Idha bhikkhu ekaccassa evaµ di††hi hoti: So loko so attå, so pecca bhavissåmi nicco dhuvo sassato avipari~åmadhammo, sassati­samaµ tath’ eva †hassåm⁄ti. So su~åti Tathågatassa vå Ta­thå­ ga­ta­såvakassa vå sabbesaµ di††hi††hånådhi††hånå-pariyu††hånå­ bhini­vesånusayånaµ samugghåtåya sabbasaπkhårasamathåya sabb¨padhipa†inissaggåya ta~hakkhayåya virågåya nirodhåya nibbånåya dhammaµ desentassa. Tassa evaµ hoti: Ucchijjissåmi nåma su, vinassissåmi nåma su, na su nåma bhavissåm⁄ti. So socati kila­mati 3.  [‘the process of’ is crossed out in pencil.]


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paridevati, urattå¬iµ kandati, sammohaµ åpajjati. Evaµ kho bhikkhu ajjhattaµ asati paritassanå hot⁄ti. (Majjhima, 22) ‘Might there be anxiety about internal non-being, venerable sir?’— ‘There might be, monk’, the August One said. ‘Here, monk, someone holds this view, “that is the world, that is the self; when I have departed I shall be permanent, enduring, eternal, not subject to change; and like this shall I remain, for ever and ever”. He listens to the Tathågata or his disciple teaching the doctrine (dhamma) for the uprooting of all views, prejudices, obsessions, inclinations, and tendencies, for the calming of all formations, for the relinquishing of all foundations, for the destruction of craving, for dispassion, for cessation, for extinction. It occurs to him, “I shall surely be cut off! I shall surely perish! I shall surely be no more!” He sorrows, is distressed, and laments, and beating his breast and bewailing, he falls into confusion. Thus indeed, monk, there is anxiety about internal non-being.’ Only when the world of the five aggregates is no longer thought of as permanent and unchanging self (and we shall see that the idea of self is merely a mistaken view of the five aggregates), only then will extinction of becoming cease to appear as annihilation of self. The second discourse of the Buddha to the first five monks, the Anatta­ lakkha~a Sutta (Khandha Saµyutta, 59), is one of the better-known Suttas, and no-one now disputes that the Buddha categorically denied the existence of attå, self or soul, in the five aggregates. But belief in self is strong, and hard to abandon; and many people, forbidden to look for self inside the five aggregates, hope to find it outside;4* and they sometimes come to think that nibbåna must contain, or be, attå. In thinking that nibbåna is attå, two mistakes are made. The first may be seen from this text:

4.*  The practice of supposing that the Buddha, in his condemnation of attavåda, only denied the existence of an illusory personal self and approved belief in a real universal Self is sometimes to be met with. This distinction—presumably derived from the j⁄våtman and paramåtman of the Vedanta—is quite gratuitous, since no distinction can be detected in the Pali of the Suttas between a false and a true attå: the Buddha’s Teaching is perfectly consistent without this borrowed interpretation, and its introduction violates the principle of Occam’s razor, or the law of parsimony.


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Ye hi keci bhikkhave sama~å vå bråhma~å va anekavihitaµ attånam samanupassamånå samanupassanti, sabbe te pañcupådånakkhandhe samanupassanti, etesaµ vå aññataraµ. (Khandha Saµyutta, 47) Whatever ascetics or recluses, monks, there may be who consider self in various forms, they are all considering the five aggregates of clinging or one of them. All thoughts about self are necessarily, whether the thinker is aware of it or not, thoughts about the five aggregates of clinging; and to think of nibbåna as attå is to think of nibbåna as consisting of one or more of these five aggregates. The second mistake is to believe that there really is such a thing as self. The following text leaves no doubt about the matter. Ahañ c’Ånanda Vacchagottassa paribbåjakassa, Atthattå ti pu††ho samåno, Atthattå ti vyåkareyyaµ; api nu me taµ anulomaµ abhavissa ñå~assa upådåya, Sabbe dhammå anattåti. No hetaµ bhante. (Avyåkata Saµyutta, 10) ‘If, Ånanda, when asked, “Does self exist?”, I had answered the wanderer Vacchagotta, “Self does exist”; would that have been in accordance with the knowledge that I have, “All things are not-self”?’ ‘No indeed, Venerable Sir.’ Whatever the significance of sabbe dhammå anattå (a matter that will be discussed later), it is clear that an affirmative answer to the question ‘Does self exist?’ would not have been in accordance with the Buddha’s knowledge. It is quite evident that ‘nibbåna is attå’ cannot be said. Depending upon whether water is present or not, a piece of cloth may be either wet or dry; there is no third possibility: and it might seem that this alternative applies to all things. Whatever is not wet must be dry; whatever is not dry must be wet. Just so, it may be thought that whatever is not attå must be anattå, and whatever is not anattå must be attå. Since we cannot say ‘nibbåna is attå’, it follows that nibbåna must be anattå. But suppose a hole is made in the cloth by cutting a small piece of material from the middle: though the cloth itself must indeed be either wet or dry, the hole, as such, is neither. A hole is a negative, an absence of some material substance—in this case, of


nibbåna and anattå

cotton threads—, and we cannot ascribe to it qualities, such as wet and dry, that properly apply only to actual material substance. Nibbåna, like the hole in the cloth, is a negative, an absence of what formerly was present; and attå and anattå can properly apply—attå mistakenly, and anattå correctly—only to the positive five aggregates. The attempt to ascribe these attributes to nibbåna lands us in absurdities, as we may see when the Anattalakkha~a Sutta (Khandha Saµyutta, 59) is travestied by substituting nibbåna for the five aggregates: Nibbånaµ bhikkhave anattå. Nibbånañca hidaµ bhikkhave attå abhavissa, na yidaµ nibbånaµ åbådhåya saµvatteyya, labbhetha ca nibbåne, Evaµ me nibbånaµ hotu, evaµ me nibbånaµ må ahos⁄ti. Yasmå ca kho bhikkhave nibbånaµ anattå, tasmå nibbånaµ åbå­ dhåya saµvattati, na ca labbhati nibbåne, Evaµ me nibbånaµ hotu, evaµ me nibbånaµ må ahos⁄ti. Extinction, monks, is not-self. For if, monks, extinction were self, then extinction would not lead to affliction, and one would obtain of extinction, ‘Let my extinction be thus, let my extinction not be thus’. And indeed, monks, extinction is not-self, so extinction leads to affliction, and it is not obtained of extinction, ‘Let my extinction be thus, let my extinction not be thus’. To say that nibbåna is attå is to think that we can alter our personal extinction to suit our taste, which is a very curious idea: but to say ‘nibbåna is anattå’, in our haste to correct the mistaken view that nibbåna is attå, is merely to assert that extinction leads to affliction—to change, decay, and death—; and we escape out of the fire, but only into the frying-pan. Those who hold the view that nibbåna is attå are, indeed, doubly mistaken—they misunderstand nibbåna, and they believe in the reality of attå. But although those who hold that nibbåna is anattå may not believe in the existence of attå, or may think they do not believe in it,5* they still confound nibbåna, consciously or unconsciously, with the five aggregates. If it is remembered, that permanent abiding attå can only be thought of in connexion with the five aggregates; that, in fact, such a thought is mistaken, since it rests on an ontological deception, a mirage, the illusion ‘I am’; that the five aggregates are consequently without attå, or unchanging principle 5.*  Nibbåna is permanent; by predicating anattå of it they make it positive; and such a permanent positive state is a first cousin of the paramåtman of the Vedanta. The wheel comes full circle.


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or essence; that, since they have no unchanging principle or essence, they are powerless to resist impermanence and inevitably ‘lead to affliction’—to change, decay, and death—; and that this impotence in the face of change is the characteristic of anattå: and if it is also remembered that nibbåna is both void of the five aggregates and permanent,—then it should not be difficult to see why nothing is attå, why the five aggregates are anattå, and why it cannot be said that nibbåna is either. Certainly, a statement by the Buddha that nibbåna is attå or that it is anattå is nowhere to be found it the Suttas.

ii. saπkhårå & dhammå A discussion of nibbåna and anattå might, perhaps, have been needless, were it not that, in spite of the Buddha’s silence on the matter, the view that nibbåna is anattå is often put forward. To justify this view, appeal is generally made to these three statements of the Buddha’s, which occur in the Suttas in many places: Sabbe saπkhårå aniccå. Sabbe saπkhårå dukkhå. Sabbe dhammå anattå. (Aπguttara, III,134; Dhammapada, 277-279; etc.) All formations are impermanent. All formations are suffering. All things are not-self. They are interpreted in this way. Sabbe saπkhårå means everything that is saπkhata, or formed; or, in other words, everything excluding the asaπkhata, the unformed, nibbåna. Sabbe dhammå means both saπkhata and asaπkhata; that is to say, everything, nibbåna included. Nibbåna is thus anattå. As evidence of the correctness of such an interpretation, this Sutta passage will perhaps be adduced: Yåvatå bhikkhave dhammå saπkhatå vå asaπkhatå vå virågo tesaµ dhammånaµ aggaµ akkhåyati yadidaµ madanimmadano pipåsavinayo ålayasamugghåto va††¨pacchedo ta~hakkhayo virågo nirodho nibbånaµ. (Aπguttara, IV,34)


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Whatever things (dhammå), monks, there are, formed or unformed, the topmost of those things is declared to be dispassion, that is to say, the ending of intoxication, the removal of thirst, the uprooting of yearning, the interruption of the round, the destruction of craving, dispassion, cessation, extinction. At first sight this passage seems convincing; and it is only on closer examination that the argument based on it is seen to be fallacious. For this reason, and also because it provides a salutary warning against treating the Buddha’s teaching as an exercise in logic, it is dealt with here. It is clear enough that, in this Sutta, the asaπkhata, or nibbåna, is referred to as a dhamma. But to suppose that the term dhamma can therefore always apply to nibbåna would be a mistake, for it is said elsewhere, Dhammå aniccå: yad aniccaµ taµ dukkhaµ: yaµ dukkhaµ tad anattå. (Sa¬åyatana Saµyutta, 4) Things (dhammå) are impermanent: what is impermanent is suffering: what is suffering is not-self. Since nibbåna, as we saw earlier, is both permanent and pleasant—pleasant precisely because it is void of suffering—, it is evident that the word dhamma does not always have exactly the same meaning. It is not intended to prove that nibbåna is never referred to as dhamma, but simply to show that any syllogistic reasoning using the term dhamma—‘All things (dhammå) are anattå: nibbåna is a thing (dhamma): therefore nibbåna is anattå’—is suspect and unreliable. And, in fact, reference to the full text of the Sutta passage in question shows dhammå in the company of the words buddha and saπgha—a context where dhamma means ‘(The Buddha’s) Teaching’ or ‘Doctrine’ or ‘Norm’. This is clearly a quite different order of meaning of dhamma from that in sabbe dhammå anattå, and the above argument is consequently invalid.6 The earlier discussion should leave no doubt that sabbe dhammå anattå cannot possibly refer to nibbåna; but if this is once admitted, it becomes necessary to account for the change from saπkhåra to dhamma in the three statements, sabbe saπkhårå aniccå, sabbe saπkhårå dukkhå, and sabbe 6.  From this point to the end the argument is seriously at fault and hopelessly misleading. Ñå~av⁄ra, 12.iii.65.


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dhammå anattå. Why not simply sabbe saπkhårå aniccå, dukkhå and anattå? In the absence of an explanation by the Buddha, all that we can hope for, and, indeed, all that we can really want, is a simple interpretation that should not conflict with the Suttas and should be in conformity with the general intention of the Buddha’s teaching. What follows does not pretend to be more than a tentative opinion: it is a suggestion rather than an assertion. Like the colours of the rainbow, the meanings of saπkhåra and dhamma are many and various; and just as the blue merges into the green, and the green into the yellow, without any abrupt change, so each meaning of these two words merges into another, and that into a third, without our ever being able to say where one ends and the next begins: under these circumstances, exact definition is impossible, and formal logic, as we have seen, misleading. Some of these meanings—kåyasaπkhåra, ‘in and out breaths’, for example, and dhamma and adhamma, ‘right’ and ‘wrong’—are clearly irrelevant to the problem; others, just as clearly, are essential to it. The task is to decide where the dividing line shall be drawn. Quotations from the Suttas are here chosen according as they seem to illustrate various relevant meanings of saπkhårå and dhammå (in their plural form); and their general sense, indicated by these quotations, which cover for each word a certain limited range of meanings, will be found to give a reasonable interpretation of the three statements under discussion. Four texts will be enough to show that saπkhårå—at least within the range that is taken here—has a threefold aspect. Katamañca bhikkhave r¨paµ… Katamå ca bhikkhave vedanå… Katamå ca bhikkhave saññå… Katame ca bhikkhave saπkhårå. Chayime bhikkhave cetanåkåyå, r¨pasañcetanå saddasañcetanå gandhasañcetanå rasasañcetanå pho††habbasañcetanå dhammasañcetanå. Ime vuccanti bhikkhave saπkhårå… Katamañca bhikkhave viññå~aµ… (Khandha Saµyutta, 56) And which, monks, is matter?… And which, monks, is feeling?… And which, monks, is perception?… And which, monks, are formations? There are, monks, these six groups of volition: volition regarding forms, volition regarding


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sounds, volition regarding smells, volition regarding tastes, volition regarding touches, volition regarding things. These, monks, are called formations… And which, monks, is consciousness?… All the volitions of a living being, which arise in connexion with objects either of senses or of the mind, all his affective reactions to experience, his desires and aversions, his likes and dislikes, are called saπkhårå, or—as it is translated here—formations, and are included in the aggregate of formations. In this passage, therefore, saπkhårå are just volitions, and compose one of the five aggregates. In the next quotation the emphasis shifts: Kiñca bhikkhave r¨paµ vadetha… Kiñca bhikkhave vedanaµ vadetha… Kiñca bhikkhave saññaµ vadetha… Kiñca bhikkhave saπkhåre vadetha. Saπkhataµ abhisaπkharont⁄ti bhikkhave tasmå saπkhårå ti vuccanti. Kiñca saπkhataµ abhisaπ­ kharonti. R¨paµ r¨patthåya saπkhataµ abhisaπkharonti. Vedanaµ vedanatthåya saπkhataµ abhisaπkharonti. Saññaµ saññatthåya saπkhataµ abhisaπkharonti. Saπkhåre saπkhåratthåya saπkhataµ abhisaπkharonti. Viññå~aµ viññå~atthåya saπkhataµ abhisaπkharonti. Saπkhatam abhisaπkharont⁄ti kho bhikkhave tasmå saπkharå ti vuccanti. Kiñca bhikkhave viññå~aµ vadetha… (Khandha Saµyutta, 79) And what, monks, do you say is matter?… And what, monks, do you say is feeling?… And what, monks, do you say is perception?… And what, monks, do you say are formations? ‘They form what is formed’, that, monks, is why they are called ‘formations’. And what is the formed that they form? Matter as matter is the formed that they form, Feeling as feeling is the formed that they form, Perception as perception is the formed that they form, Formations as formations are the formed that they form, Consciousness as consciousness is the formed that they form.


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‘They form the formed’, that indeed, monks, is why they are called ‘formations’. And what, monks, do you say is consciousness?… Saπkhårå are no longer merely volitions: though still one of the five aggregates, they are now seen in their dynamic function. Saπkhårå ‘form what is formed’. And what is formed? The five aggregates are formed; all existence is formed. This simply means that the present existence of a living being—the five aggregates—is conditioned by his volitions in the past, and that his present volitions condition his future existence. Finally, here are two texts in which the meaning of saπkhårå has moved right over; and the word now refers to ‘what is formed’, to all five aggregates, to the new existence or the embryo in the womb. r¨paµ bhikkhave aniccaµ, vedanå aniccå, saññå aniccå, saπkhårå aniccå, viññå~aµ aniccaµ…: sabbe saπkhårå aniccå… (Majjhima, 35) Matter, monks, is impermanent, feeling is impermanent, perception is impermanent, formations are impermanent, consciousness is impermanent…: all formations are impermanent… Kabaliπkåre ce bhikkhave åhåre atthi rågo atthi nandi atthi ta~hå pati†­†hitaµ tattha viññå~aµ vir¨¬haµ; yattha pati††hitaµ viññå­ ~aµ vir¨¬haµ atthi tattha nåmar¨passa avakkanti; yattha atthi nåma­r¨passa avakkanti atthi tattha saπkhårå~aµ vuddhi; yattha atthi saπ­khårånaµ vuddhi atthi tattha åyatiµ punabbhavåbhinibbati; yattha atthi åyatiµ punabbhavåbhinibbati atthi tattha åyatiµ jåti­jarå­ma­ra~aµ; yattha atthi åyatiµ jåtijaråmara~aµ sasokantaµ bhikkhave sadaraµ saupåyåsanti vadåmi. (Nidåna/Abhisamaya Saµyutta, 64) If, monks, there is lust for the sustenance of solid food, if there is delight in it and craving for it, consciousness established there increases; where established consciousness increases, there is descent (into the womb) of mentality-and-materiality; where there is descent of mentality-and-materiality, there is growth of formations; where there is growth of formations, there is in the future a coming into renewed existence; where there is in the future a coming into renewed existence, there are in the future birth, decay, and death; where there


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are in the future birth, decay, and death, monks, there will be found sorrow, passion, and despair, I say. Saπkhårå are first, volitions; secondly, what form the formed; and thirdly, the five aggregates, the living being. Volitions, thus, are what form the formed; and what is formed is the living being. Combining these, we get a single phrase, ‘volitions form the living being’, which covers all three meanings. This we shall take as expressing the general sense of saπkhårå. The emphasis, in particular contexts, on any one of these three aspects may be more than on the others, as the quotations show; but if the general sense is entirely forgotten in such contexts, the essential background connecting different uses of the word saπkhårå is lost; and many passages, thus isolated, become hard to understand. If the context does not indicate any one particular aspect, then saπkhårå may be understood in its general sense. It will be seen that the general sense of saπkhårå, ‘volitions form the living being’, describes a process taking place in time—past volitions form present beings, present volitions form future beings. Since the chief characteristic of a temporal process is change, we may say ‘every formation of living beings by volitions is a process of change’, or more shortly, ‘all formations are impermanent’; and we thus arrive at sabbe saπkhårå aniccå. A general sense of saπkhårå has been found by putting together three particular and connected meanings: the result is, as it were, the Lowest Common Multiple. The meanings of dhammå, however, seem to be related rather differently, and the general sense may perhaps best be arrived at by finding a formulation that is true of all of them—a kind of Highest Common Factor. Manañ ca pa†icca dhamme ca uppajjati manoviññå~aµ. (Majjhima, 148) Dependent upon the mind and upon things, mind-consciousness arises. Mano anicco: dhammå aniccå: manoviññå~aµ aniccaµ. (Sa¬åyatana Saµyutta, 43) The mind is impermanent: things are impermanent: mind-consciousness is impermanent.


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In these quotations, and in many other passages, dhammå—here translated as the neutral word ‘things’—means anything that can be the object of mind-consciousness (as opposed to eye-consciousness and so on), or in brief, ‘objects of the mind’. The second quotation shows that dhammå, as objects of the mind, are impermanent. Nibbåna, being permanent, is clearly not an object of the mind; for if it were, consciousness and nibbåna would both cease together, and lust, hate, and delusion, would return to plague an Arahat upon his death—a strange state of affairs. Seyyathå pi Sandaka purisassa hatthapådå chinnå, tassa carato c’ eva ti††hato ca suttassa ca jågarassa ca satataµ samitaµ jånåti chinnå me hatthapådå ti, udåhu paccavekkhamåno jånåti, chinnå me hatthapådåti. Na kho bho Ånanda so puriso satataµ samitaµ jånåti, chinnå me hatthapådåti, api ca kho pana paccavekkhamåno jånåti, chinnå me hatthapådåti. Evameva kho Sandaka yo so bhikkhu arahaµ kh⁄~åsavo vusitavå katakara~⁄yo ohitabhåro anuppattasadattho parikkh⁄~a­bhava­ saµyojano sammadaññåvimutto, tassa carato c’ eva ti††hato ca suttassa ca jågarassa ca satataµ samitaµ ñå~adassanaµ na paccupa††hitaµ: kh⁄~å me åsavå ti, api ca kho pana paccavekkhamåno jånåti: kh⁄~å me åsavå ti. (Majjhima, 76—Burmese reading) ‘Suppose, Sandaka, there is a man whose hands and feet are cut off; whether he walks or stands or sleeps or wakes, does he perpetually and continuously know “My hands and feet are cut off”, or, rather, is it when he reflects that he knows “My hands and feet are cut off”?’ ‘No indeed, master Ånanda, that man does not perpetually and continuously know “My hands and feet are cut off”, but it is when he reflects that he knows “My hands and feet are cut off”.’ ‘Just so, Sandaka, a monk who is an Arahat, whose cankers are destroyed, who has lived the life, done what was to be done, laid down the burden, destroyed attachment to becoming, who is free through knowing rightly; whether he walks or stands or sleeps or wakes, he does not have knowledge and vision perpetually and continuously established in him “My cankers are destroyed”, but it is when he reflects that he knows “My cankers are destroyed”.’


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The man, when he is reflecting, actually sees only the stumps at the ends of his arms and legs—for there is nothing else to be seen—, and from the fact that he no longer sees his hands or feet he infers that these are cut off. In much the same way, the Arahat sees only his own undefiled mind, and from the fact that he no longer sees his former defilements he infers their destruction—which is nibbåna. Even if an Arahat is not engaged in reflecting on the state of his mind, still lust, hate, and delusion, remain absent, and nibbåna endures. To think about nibbåna is to entertain an idea or a concept; to realize nibbåna is to destroy lust, hate, and delusion;7* to infer or reflect upon nibbåna is to compare two states—before, and after, destruction of lust, hate, and delusion—: but just as we can never actually see, only infer, ‘minus three oranges’, so in no case can nibbåna itself—namely, ‘minus lust, hate, and delusion’—be directly an object of the mind. Even though dhammå—as objects of the mind—cannot, perhaps, include nibbåna, yet it may still be maintained that sabbe dhammå—all things— cannot possibly exclude nibbåna. Nevertheless, here, surely, is a passage where sabbe dhammå does not refer to nibbåna: Chandam¨lakå åvuso sabbe dhammå, manasikårasambhavå sabbe dhammå, phassasamudayå sabbe dhammå, vedanåsamosara~å sabbe dhammå, samådhipamukhå sabbe dhammå, satådhipateyyå sabbe dhammå, paññuttarå sabbe dhammå, vimuttisårå sabbe dhammå, amatogadhå sabbe dhammå, nibbånapariyosånå sabbe dhammå ti. (Aπguttara, X,58) All things, friends, are rooted in desire; all things are born of attention; all things originate with contact; all things have their source in feeling; all things have concentration as the foremost; all things have mindfulness as the chief; all things have understanding as the highest; 7.*  To realize nibbåna and ‘to destroy lust, etc.’ are synonymous expressions. Extinction is cessation of craving (and consequently of the five aggregates). When craving is put aside (pah⁄nå), nibbåna is ipso facto achieved or realized (sacchikataµ); and this happens when the eightfold path is developed (bhåvito) and suffering is thereby penetrated (pariññåtaµ)—i.e. by seeing the five aggregates as impermanent, suffering, and not-self. In the path (which is saπkhata) both sammåsati and sammåsamådhi are present, and the object of the latter is the four satipa††hånå (C¨¬avedalla Sutta, Majjhima 44). Thus the object of the mind at the moment of the path is the five aggregates or (which amounts to the same thing) the four satipa††hånå, and not nibbåna. To say that nibbåna is seen at the moment of the path is only to speak figuratively.


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all things have release as the heart; all things are swallowed up in the deathless; all things are ended in extinction. The meaning of dhammå in this text is less easy to determine precisely than in those considered first. Desire, in one way or another, is the root condition of all sentient existence; and feeling, as the Buddha explains at length in the Mahå Nidåna Suttanta (D⁄gha, 15), is the source of ta~hå, or craving, which is responsible immediately for much of the suffering of this existence, and more remotely for rebirth in the next. But sabbe dhammå, although it undoubtedly refers to sentient existence in general, has a more definite meaning. ‘All things—sabbe dhammå—are born of attention’ and ‘originate with contact’, and they are therefore not separate from consciousness; for when there is no consciousness there is neither attention nor contact. Furthermore, concentration, mindfulness, understanding, and release, all of them relate only to the mind. A meaning of dhammå that suggests itself as valid throughout this Sutta is ‘experiences’, understood in a wide sense to include all mental events: without experiences there is no sentient existence; experiences are not separate from consciousness; and also, concentration and other mental states are experiences in the sense intended here. Nibbåna, the deathless, brings all experiences to an end. ‘All things—sabbe dhammå—are born of attention’: so it was said above. This leads us to another Sutta. Catunnaµ bhikkhave satipa††hånånaµ samudayañca atthagamañca desissåmi, taµ su~åtha. Ko ca bhikkhave kåyassa samudayo. Åhårasamudayå kåyassa samudayo, åhåranirodhå kåyassa atthagamo. Phassasamudayå vedanånaµ samudayo, phassanirodhå vedanånam atthagamo. Nåmar¨pasamudayå cittassa samudayo, nåmar¨panirodhå cittassa atthagamo. Manasikårasamudayå dhammånaµ samudayo, manasikåranirodhå dhammånaµ atthagamo ti. (Satipa††håna Saµyutta, 42) I shall teach, monks, the origination and the passing away of the four stations of mindfulness; listen to it. And what, monks, is the origination of the body? With the originating of sustenance there is the originating of the body; with the cessation of sustenance there is the passing away of the body.


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With the originating of contact there is there is the originating of feelings; with the cessation of contact there is the passing away of feelings. With the originating of mentality-and-materiality there is the originating of mental states; with the cessation of mentality-and-materiality there is the passing away of mental states. With the originating of attention there is there is the originating of things (dhammå); with the cessation of attention there is the passing away of things. Here, dhammå are one of the four satipa††hånå, or stations of mindfulness. The body, feelings, and mental states, the first three satipa††hånå, are, for all their variety, fairly simple entities, and they can be observed more or less immediately. They originate and pass away together with sustenance, contact, and mentality-and-materiality, respectively; independently, that is to say, of whether they are deliberately made the objects of mindful contemplation or not. But dhammå, as described in the Satipa††håna Sutta (Majjhima 10), are the complex elements of five quite different elaborate analyses of various aspects of existence—five hindrances, five aggregates, six internal and external bases, seven factors of enlightenment, and four noble truths. These elements are entities that have been observed and identified by analysis and given a mental label. Idha bhikkhave bhikkhu santaµ vå ajjhattaµ kåmacchandaµ: atthi me ajjhattaµ kåmacchando ti pajånåti; asantaµ vå ajjhattaµ kåmacchandaµ: natthi me ajjhattaµ kåmacchando ti pajånåti, yathå ca anuppannassa kåmacchandassa uppådo hoti tañca pajånåti, yathå ca uppannassa kåmacchandassa pahånaµ hoti tañca pajånåti; yathå ca pah⁄nassa kåmacchandassa åyatiµ anuppådo hoti tañca pajånåti. (Majjhima, 10) Here, monks, a monk understands present sensual desire, ‘Sensual desire is present in me’; or he understands absent sensual desire, ‘Sensual desire is absent in me’; and how there is arising of un­arisen sensual desire, that he understands; and how there is putting aside of arisen sensual desire, that he understands; and how there is no arising in the future of sensual desire that is put aside, that he understands. Here, the observed entity is the lustful emotion that has arisen, and ‘sensual desire’ is the label. This labelling, and the elaborate analysis of the situation that accompanies it, are only possible in a deliberate contemplative


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effort of the mind; and the identified entities, the elements of analysis, the dhammå, can only occur in the mental process of analysing experience, irrespective of whether the original entities are mental or material. That is why dhammå only last as long as attention (manasikåra) is being paid to them, and why ‘with the cessation of attention there is the passing away of dhammå’. This suggests a more specific meaning of dhammå, having particular reference to the fourth satipa††håna, namely, ‘elements of mental analysis’. From the discussion in the last paragraph, it is apparent that dhammå as ‘elements of mental analysis’ represents what is common to both dhammå as ‘objects of the mind’ and dhammå as ‘experiences’ (in its widest sense); for ‘elements of mental analysis’ are experiences that have become objects of the analysing mind. We can now formulate a general sense of dhammå that is valid at least within the range of meanings indicated by the Suttas that have been considered: dhammå are ‘objects of mental analysis’. This general sense has been derived, not as an exact definition of dhammå, but as a guide to the implication of sabbe dhammå anattå. When this result is applied, sabbe dhammå anattå becomes ‘all objects of mental analysis are not-self’. Since attå, or self, arises in the first place merely as a delusive figment of the mind, and is then attributed by the deluded mind to its objects—‘the five aggregates of clinging or one of them’—, a statement that mental analysis finds no attå in any of its objects is equivalent to an absolute denial of attå. Remembering this, and also the fact that the mind is the only means there is of investigating anything at all, the foregoing interpretation of sabbe dhammå anattå may not seem unreasonable.8* Cakkhuµ kho Ånanda suññaµ attena vå attaniyena vå: r¨på suññå attena vå attaniyena vå: cakkhuviññå~aµ suññam attena vå attaniyena vå: cakkhusamphasso suñño attena vå attaniyena vå: yampidaµ cakkhusamphassapaccayå uppajjati vedayitaµ sukhaµ vå dukkhaµ vå adukkhamasukhaµ vå, tam pi suññaµ attena vå attaniyena vå. Sotaµ suññaµ…: saddå suññå… Ghånaµ suññaµ…: gandhå suññå… Jivhå suññå…: raså suññå… 8.*  Perhaps the most satisfactory translation of dhamma in this sense is ‘phenomenon’—that of which a sense or the mind directly takes note, immediate object of perception (Concise Oxford Dictionary). ‘All formations are impermanent, all formations are suffering, all phenomena are not-self.’


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Kåyo suñño…: pho††habbå suññå… Mano suñño…: dhammå suññå… Yasmå ca kho Ånanda suññaµ attena vå attaniyena vå, tasmå, Suñño loko ti vuccat⁄ ti. (Sa¬åyatana Saµyutta, 85) The eye, Ånanda, is void of self and of anything to do with self: forms are void of self and of anything to do with self: eye consciousness is void of self and of anything to do with self: eye-contact is void of self and of anything to do with self: whatever feeling arises conditioned by eye-contact, whether pleasant or painful or neither painful nor pleasant, that too is void of self and of anything to do with self. The ear is void…: sounds are void… The nose is void…: smells are void… The tongue is void…: tastes are void… The body is void…: touches are void… The mind is void…: things are void… Since, Ånanda, it is void of self and of anything to do with self, therefore ‘The world is void’, it is said. Thus the Buddha analyses the world into forty-two dhammå, and finds no self. There is no mention, be it noted, of nibbåna. What more remains to be said? We have sabbe saπkhårå aniccå because change is the characteristic of saπkhårå, a synthesis, a process involving time: sabbe saπkhårå dukkhå because suffering is a characteristic of change: and sabbe dhammå anattå because dhamma implies an analysis, a tally of the state of affairs at a given moment, in which no self can be found. If a length of cable is looked at sideways, the strands can be traced without difficulty from end to end, but it is hard to tell how many there are, and to make sure that not one is overlooked. Sabbe sankårå aniccå is existence seen sideways, as a process: impermanence is easy to observe, but can we be certain there is no hidden core of self inside? If a cross-section of the same cable is looked at, although the strands cannot be seen as they run through the cable they can be counted immediately, and not one will pass unnoticed. Sabbe dhammå anattå is existence seen in cross section, as a state: although impermanence is not immediately not evident, a hidden core of self inside would be noticed at once. R¨paµ bhikkhave aniccaµ, vedanå aniccå, saññå aniccå, saπkhårå aniccå, viññå~aµ aniccaµ; r¨paµ bhikkhave anattå, vedanå anattå,


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saññå anattå, saπkhårå anattå, viññå~aµ anattå: sabbe saπkhårå aniccå, sabbe dhammå anattå ti. (Majjhima, 35) Matter, monks, is impermanent, feeling is impermanent, perception is impermanent, formations are impermanent, consciousness is impermanent; matter, monks, is not-self, feeling is not-self, perception is nor-self, formations are not-self, consciousness is not-self: all formations are impermanent; all things are not-self. Seen as saπkhårå, the five aggregates are aniccå, seen as dhammå, they are anattå. Existence—the five aggregates—may be looked at, like the cable, in one way or in another: but in whichever way it is looked at, it is still anicca, dukkha, and anattå. How, then, can nibbåna be any of these things? For it is cessation of existence. Sabbesu dhammesu sam¨hatesu Sam¨hatå vådapathå pi sabbeti. December 1953


‘Sketch for a Proof of Rebirth’ was published (and reprinted several times) in abbreviated form: the text reproduced here is taken from the author’s typescript, which may be regarded as the definitive version. The essay first appeared in The Light of the Dhamma for April 1957, pp. 37-42, without the Appendices. Footnotes include the author’s later comments, written in pencil on the typescripts. Footnotes belonging to the original texts are indicated by the symbol *. Those footnotes or parts thereof which are in square brackets are editorial.


Sketch for a Proof of Rebirth1 A Phenomenological Approach to the Teaching of the Buddha

preface This short work sets out to explore certain aspects of the Buddha’s Teaching recorded in the Pali Suttas. Its manner of doing so, however, may seem unfamiliar in the prevailing atmosphere of scientific common sense. And in fact its aim is also to suggest that the Suttas will necessarily remain incomprehensible so long as common sense is taken for granted, and to exemplify what may perhaps be found a more fruitful way of approach. But it makes no claim to finality. What, exactly, did the Buddha teach? That he taught the way to nibbåna or extinction there is no doubt at all. But what is extinction? We are told (Aπguttaranikåya, X,i,6) that extinction is cessation of being, bhavanirodha. We shall not be surprised, therefore, to find that the Suttas are largely devoted to the analysis of being. And the key to an understanding of the Suttas is undoubtedly recognition of the fact that they are centred on a hard nucleus of ontology—things ‘must be seen, with right understanding, as they are’ (Khandha Saµyutta, vi,7). But how, in fact, are things? The answer is really very simple:2 things are as they appear; for how else could right understanding ever see them as they are? If a thing can appear, however, it can also disappear; and this shows that it must appear to something that does not disappear. To what does it appear? It appears to me. It seems, then, that a thing as it appears is only part of a total situation, the other part of which is myself; and since to understand a thing as it is I must study its 1.  not for publication – This article is out of date (1.vi.1961), and partly misleading, particularly as regards Dhamma. There is, however, a certain amount, particularly some of the analysis of action and presence/absence in the later appendices, that remains valid. It has to do with the three saπkhatalakkha~as (see Aπguttara Tikampålå). For ‘field’ read ‘thing’ throughout. The notion of craving = gradient of feeling is false and misleading. In some passages ‘degree of consciousness’ will do instead of ‘gradient of feeling’. There can be feeling (in the arahat) without craving. 2.  [From here to the end of the paragraph:] Confusion.


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appearance (and disappearance) I must consequently not ignore that total situation; but I cannot investigate the total situation without investigating myself. Thus there can be no understanding of things as they are without self-observation. It is precisely because of its blindness to this fact that natural science is compelled, in the last analysis, to invoke the mysterious notion of common sense. The professional rationalists, however, do not hold undisputed sway. Their unreasonable claims that reason can explain all things have always been questioned, and of late years particularly by the phenomenologists. This school (which is comparatively little known in the English-speaking world), basing itself on the absolute reflexive certainty of the Cartesian cogito ergo sum, understands that phenomena show themselves for what they are and that since they do not conceal any reality behind their appearance they can be studied and described simply as they appear. The fact will at once be plain that the remarks above on the Buddha’s Teaching were not made in ignorance of such doctrines. And indeed, as regards method, the present work owes a particular debt to the writings of Jean-Paul Sartre, one of the leading exponents of the school. If this work should be found to throw light in dark corners, the fact of such indebtedness may be of value as indicating a possible way of transition from traditional Western ideas to the Buddha’s Teaching. What follows, however, is not a treatise on phenomenology as such, and it supposes that other sources will be accessible to those who find difficulty in adapting themselves to an unaccustomed way of thinking. Moreover it should not be presumed that an acknowledgement of indebtedness necessarily implies agreement at all points with the writings concerned: the present work, in fact, goes further than they; nor does it accept them as unquestionably authoritative. In certain matters, indeed, they are thought to be3 mistaken. This needs emphasizing; for though they may seem to provide a means of access to the Buddha’s Teaching they are not in any way regarded as supplanting it. Common sense may denounce as scandalous and highly unlikely the view of things that eventually emerges, namely, that my manifold possibilities at every level of generality are always all existing at once, and that they continue to be so on the express condition that they do not appear as such but as so many rival intrinsic probabilities—as an objective world. But, after all, the phenomenon of precognition is antecedently no less unlikely in the eye of reason; yet, by the ultimate standards of reason itself, to wit, statistical exclusion of chance, it is a well-established fact. And on the view 3.  [‘thought to be’ is pencilled out and written in is:] certainly. Ñå~av⁄ra.


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of things that emerges (and particularly after the discussion of equivocal premonitions in Appendix VII) it seems that we may be able to describe the possibility of precognition as a regular structural feature of experience. On the same view of things we find that we cannot describe the future as predetermined. If phenomenological ontology should be capable (as it seems it might), not only of accomodating such an awkward fact as precognition, but also of reconciling it with indeterminacy in a single coherent picture, it would certainly enjoy a decided advantage over the rationalist view, which is here at a complete loss. This,4 however, is no absolute criterion; for the Buddha’s Teaching is concerned with bringing an end to being, not with description for its own sake; and the final appeal in deciding on one line of approach rather than another can only be to whether or not it leads to extinction. But each must determine this for himself. Acknowledgement of indebtedness must also be made to Dr. Ross Ashby’s admirably lucid book (see References), which sets out to account for the stability of animal behaviour in physiological terms by making use of the principles of cybernetics. This book has clarified and crystallized certain ideas and suggested several fruitful lines of thought. But it will become clear that the basic assumptions of such an approach—common sense, the study of behaviour from outside (valid only for other people’s behaviour), the physiological view of feeling—are quite unacceptable. The work consists of a short essay followed by a series of appendices. In the essay matters are presented with extreme simplification and generality, and expansions and qualifications are omitted that would be indispensable in a longer account. In the appendices, however, certain descriptions have been developed in greater detail, but with less regard for orderly presentation. They are intended as threads to guide readers who have not been discouraged by the essay and who want to pursue matters further. There is no direct exegesis of the Suttas, and though (for example) most of the individual terms of the usual formulation of dependent arising (pa†iccasamuppåda) will be recognized in one place or another, such formulation is not discussed specifically. Nevertheless it is hoped that this enigmatic Sutta statement, as well as others, will seem less arbitrary in the light of what is said. A Pali-English Conversion Table of principal terms will be found at the end. Ceylon, April 1957

4.  [From here to the end of this paragraph the typescript is crossed out in pencil.]


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references 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

All explicit references are to the Pali Sutta Pitaka. Two passages are quoted from Chapters XXV & XXIX respectively of Pascal’s Pensées. The following modern works, though not specifically quoted, are relevant: W. Ross Ashby, Design for a Brain, Chapman and Hall, London, 1952. J.-P. Sartre, Esquisse d’une Théorie des Émotions, Hermann & Cie, Paris, 1939. —, L’Être et le Néant, N.R.F., Gallimard, Paris, 1943. —, L’Imaginaire, N.R.F., Gallimard, Paris, 1948. The work alluded to in appendix v will have been the following: A. Eddington, New Pathways in Science, Cambridge, 1935. On the limitations of inferential argument the following work may be consulted if desired: Bertrand Russell, Human Knowledge: its scope and limits, George Allen and Unwin Ltd., London, 1948.



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Beginningless, monks, is this course; a starting point of creatures, who are running and coursing on constrained by nescience and attached by craving, is not evident. (Anamatagga SaÂľyutta, i,1)


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Can rebirth be proved? The last word is always emphasized. And it is certain that we should willingly trade all the circumstantial evidence in the world, all the cases, however well attested, of the Societies for Psychical Research, all the direct testimony of those who claim to have knowledge of their former lives, against one good satisfying proof (or disproof, for that matter) of rebirth that convinced us personally, at any hour of the day or night, beyond all possible manner of doubt. Clearly, if such a proof is to be entirely convincing at any moment at all that we care to consult it, then it must not depend on an act of memory, for the good reason that we cannot trust our memory with that complete certainty we are looking for. Thus we cannot accept a proof that involves such evidence, however attractive, as an apparition once seen, a message once received from the dead, a memory of what appears to be a past life. And in no circumstances can we be satisfied with a proof consisting of an inferential logical argument; for if it is deductive we can always doubt the premisses (to which the argument adds nothing), and if inductive, the conclusion (which is no more than probable). A proof that shall be entirely convincing at all times can only be found in what is at all times to hand and beyond doubt, namely our immediate conscious experience; and this proof, when stated, will necessarily be in the form not of a reasoned argument but of a description—a description of what each of us can see for himself whenever he wishes. So the question narrows itself down to this: Given the actual facts of conscious experience as we may at any time observe them, do we find any characteristics such that upon seeing them we cannot doubt rebirth? ‘What are our natural principles,’ asks Pascal ‘if not our habitual principles? A different habit will give other natural principles. This is seen by experience. Fathers fear that their children’s natural love will get effaced. What, then, is this nature that is liable to be effaced? Habit is a second nature that destroys the first. Why is habit not natural? I am very much afraid that this nature is itself only a first habit, as habit is a second nature’. Our nature is nothing else than our habit. A nature or habit destroys a preceding nature or habit. On these two observations we hope to build an absolutely certain proof of rebirth. What, first, is our nature? It is easy to reply that it is what governs our behaviour in any given circumstances. But we must avoid a trap. My behaviour as it appears to other people is by no means the same thing as what it appears to myself; for there is no certainty at all that my bodily activities and their repercussions in the world will in fact accord with what I am intending. I am given a cup of tea; there is glass jar on the table containing a white substance; I open the jar and put some of the contents in


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my cup; an onlooker who believes that the substance is arsenic says to me ‘Why are you poisoning yourself?’; ‘I don’t understand you,’ I reply ‘I am putting sugar in my tea’. Who is right? Certainly, the consequences of my putting the white substance in my tea will depend on whether it is sugar or arsenic—time will tell. But if I am to investigate my nature there is no doubt at all that my behaviour must be regarded as my intention; for even if the stuff really is arsenic and I do in fact poison myself, yet my nature is clearly to be drinking tea with sugar and not to be putting an end to my life, whatever outside appearances may say. The distinction between my behaviour as it is for other people—externally observed modifications in my body and in the world (of which my body is a part)—and my behaviour as it is for myself—my intention, what I am intending—is of fundamental importance, and if we confound the two we shall condemn ourselves to understand nothing of the matter. See appendix i. Since, therefore, we are concerned with my experience as I myself observe it, my behaviour or action must be understood as my intention, and the external point of view is to be excluded at all times with the utmost rigour. ‘It is intention, monks, that I say is action: in intending one does action by body, speech, or mind.’ (Aπguttaranikåya, VI,vi,9). See appendix vi. My nature, then, is what governs my behaviour, that is to say my intention, in any given circumstances. And it follows from this definition that so long as I have a certain nature my behaviour or intention under similar circumstances must always be the same. Thus, whenever I am given a cup of tea, if I always put sugar in it that is ‘because it is my nature to put sugar in my tea’; and, obviously, so long as this is my nature I shall continue to put sugar in my tea. But what is this nature if not my habit of putting sugar in my tea? It comes to exactly the same thing whether I say that it is my habit to put sugar in my tea, or that I put sugar in my tea because it is my nature to do so. My habit is my nature and my nature is my habit, and we have only to choose which word we prefer. If my behaviour was not always the same under similar circumstances, if in other words it was not habitual, how could I speak of having a nature? (And even if I say that it is my nature to be inconsistent, that can only be because I am inconsistent by habit.) This all sounds very well, but is it correct? While we have been busy examining the credentials of the word behaviour we have allowed the word circumstances to pass unchallenged. What, exactly, do we mean by circumstances? What were the circumstances when I was putting arsenic in my tea under the impression that it was sugar? To the onlooker it was arsenic that I was putting in my tea, but to me, immediately, it was sugar. In other words, if circumstances are seen from the external point


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of view they are unsatisfactory as a guide to my intention, and if they are seen from my own point of view at the time of the intention they are an integral part of that intention—or rather, from my point of view, there are no circumstances to be seen. So long as my intention remains the same I cannot possibly say that circumstances have altered, because I see nothing independent of my intention (if my intention is to be putting sugar in my tea, then what I am putting in my tea is necessarily sugar); and this is true even though, from the external point of view (which I myself can adopt at a later time, that is to say when my intention is to be ‘examining the circumstances under which I was “putting sugar in my tea”’ and no longer to be ‘putting sugar in my tea’), the circumstances are observed to be quite different—the ‘sugar’ is arsenic and the ‘tea’ is soup. The use of the word circumstances, as we now see, is either misleading or redundant, and if we are to escape the physiological trap we must abandon it as an explanation of my behaviour. My nature is now no longer what governs my behaviour ‘in any given circumstances’: it is indistinguishable from my behaviour, it is what I am intending. And my behaviour is habitual, not when ‘it is always the same under similar circumstances’, but simply when my intention does not change. If my intention to be putting sugar in my tea is observed by me as being to some extent stable, then my behaviour is habitual. But the important thing is that I do observe this; my behaviour is habitual; it is a perpetual feature of my observed experience that each particular intention does persist unchanged for some period of time, long or short. Our nature, then, is the name we give to a certain element of stability in our experience: a habit, as anybody who has ever tried to give one up can testify, has a tendency to stick; and some (such as eating and breathing) are so stable that they normally stay with us, once we have acquired them, for the rest of our life. This stability, it will be noticed, is stability in time: time passes but our nature remains unchanged. But this is not to say that our nature does not in time change; it does, as Pascal observed; but it does not change simply because a certain amount of time has passed: we do not expect our long-established habits to change sooner than our later ones just because we have had them longer, but rather the contrary—the age of our habits is an indication of their stability. When does our nature change? In Pascal’s experience (not our usual sense of the word in this essay) it changes when a fresh nature destroys it. And when is this? Evidently when it ceases to be satisfactory. It is my nature (or habit) to be taking sugar in my tea. But suppose (for any reason that a physiologist may care to assume) I begin to find that each time I sugar my tea I am afflicted with nausea, though if I take it unsweetened nothing unpleasant


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happens. When I now drink sweet tea my former idea (or field—appendix iii refers) combining the qualities or characteristics of sweet tea and those of bodily comfort is replaced by another idea combining the qualities of sweet tea and those of nausea; whereupon I give up sweet tea. And this change takes place because the former idea is no longer satisfactory—so long as I have it I make myself sick. (By satisfactory we must understand the least unpleasant available. See appendix ii.) In other words my nature becomes not to be taking sugar in my tea but to be drinking it without (perhaps with lemon or something else). My nature, then, has changed; a fresh nature has replaced the old. But the old nature has not merely been replaced (as one might replace a broken cup with a new one after throwing away the pieces); it has been utterly destroyed. How is this? By the simple fact that the new nature is exactly contrary to the old: formerly it was my nature to be sugaring my tea, now my nature is not to be sugaring my tea. But—it may be objected—you are still drinking tea; there is no change at all in that. And this is true: although I have given up drinking sweet tea, I still find tea stimulating and I am drinking as much as before, but unsweetened. There has undeniably been a complete reversal of my nature, but only at a certain level of generality; and that this is always the case in our life we may observe for ourselves—we never change all our habits at once. It may be seen, furthermore, that the whole of our experience is nothing else but a continual reversing of our nature at one level or another, that is to say of some particular intention (though it will be evident that these reversals are normally very particular: breathing in, breathing out, breathing in, breathing out, to choose the simplest example). Every change of my nature is a denial of that nature, but carried out against the background, or in the light, of a more general nature, which at that time remains constant. Note, however, that this is the necessary structure of my change; for, so long as it is possible to compare the earlier nature with the later nature (which is the direct opposite of the earlier)—so long, in other words, as we can say ‘something has changed’ or ‘I have changed’—the two natures will have something in common; and this, precisely, is the more general nature or character that remains unchanged on that occasion. See appendix iii. If I change from ‘taking sugar in my tea’ to ‘not taking sugar in my tea’ there is the general character ‘drinking tea’ that remains constant; but I might instead change from ‘drinking tea’ to ‘drinking coffee (i.e. not drinking tea)’, and here it is the still more general character ‘being a drinker of hot drinks’ that is constant. And there is no upper limit to the possible level of generality. In one way, however, there is, but it is essentially reflexive: our nature is never wholly without some element of self-appraisal. Ultimately we must


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choose (unless we are choosing not to be choosing) between the attitude of approving existence (or being) and the opposite attitude of disapproving it. ‘There are, monks, these two views: the view of being and the view of nonbeing. Whatever ascetics and recluses there are, monks, who adhere to the view of being, who resort to the view of being, who embrace the view of being, they all oppose the view of non-being. Whatever ascetics and recluses there are, monks, who adhere to the view of non-being, who resort to the view of non-being, who embrace the view of non-being, they all oppose the view of being.’ (Majjhimanikåya, ii,1) Conscious beings, for the most part (that is to say except when they are aware of their plight, at which time their reflexion tends to be sheer—appendix iv refers), are divided between these two reflexive attitudes in the face of existence; they are welcoming it or they are repulsing it, asserting it or denying it. And what is the still more general nature that must remain constant as we pass from the one to the other and back again? It is simply ‘having-to-do with existence’.5 (Strictly, this change in reflexive attitude will not be quite the same as the switch from one unreflexive attitude to another. But we need not stop to consider this.) And is it possible not to be ‘having-to-do with existence’? It seems likely: but if it is possible it is a one-way change; for it is the change from ‘having a nature at all’ to the nature of ‘not having a nature at all’, and when there is no nature at all there is no longer anything to change. Note that the description ‘the nature of not having a nature at all’ is self-destructive: that is because words are part of existence and can only describe existence, and where existence has ceased there is nothing to be said. ‘With the removal of all natures, all modes of saying, too, are removed.’ (Suttanipåta, V,vii,8) Let us see where we have got to. Our nature, at any given level, remains constant for just so long as it remains satisfactory; and that is to say that the structure of our experience is autonomous: experience does not vary as a function of an absolute time but determines its own changes from one stable attitude (at any level) to another; in a word, it is self-adaptive; and there is no given limit to the length of time its attitude, at any one level, will remain unchanged. In particular, when our nature does change, it changes completely: it is replaced by a nature that is the exact contrary. But it is the exact contrary only at a certain level of generality; which fact automatically entails that our nature at a higher level of generality remains unchanged (though with prejudice to its changing on some other occasion). But our nature only appears in this hierarchical form if we carefully observe it while it changes; and when we do not make this effort it keeps its secret. 5.  [From here to the end of paragraph:] needs revision


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My present nature, then, at any given level, remains constant until such time as it ceases to be satisfactory, when it gives place to an exactly contrary nature. But what is my present nature, at any one level, but the reversal of a previous nature? My nature, at any level on which I care to consider it, is built on the ruins of a past nature. The fact that I now have a nature at all requires that I must have had a nature in the past; for my present nature, in one sense, is my past nature. If, at one level, my nature changes to the exact opposite of my preceding nature, then at a more general level it necessarily remains the same; this is to say that at some level or other of generality my nature is what it was, and this is always true; and, in fact, whenever we reflect we shall invariably find that at one level or another we are in the middle of doing (or being) something. Thus the necessity of past experience is to be seen, if we look, in every moment of our present experience. If, therefore, at any time (at conception, at birth, last year, yesterday) I was created out of nothing or came into being spontaneously, then I was created with (or as) a nature (for otherwise I should not have a nature at present); and if I was created with a nature, I was created with past experience. Thus if I was created it was done in such a way that it is not just practically, but absolutely and inherently impossible for me to discover the fact. This, of course, is not a logical proof that I was not created; for it is equally impossible for me to refute the suggestion that I was created (say five minutes ago in the middle of writing this essay together with half of it already written in what appears to be my handwriting); but when I see that everything happens as if I always had a past it never occurs to me to try and do so. And when I notice in particular that I must have a past even to be able to consider the suggestion that I might not, then the suggestion remains meaningless, and I am quite untouched. And future existence? By observing our present experience we see that it has the structure of an autonomous system determining its own changes from one stable attitude to another. Whenever it changes its attitude (or adapts itself) at any given level it only does so by taking up a contrary attitude; and every attitude without exception persists until such a change takes place. In other words, our experience has a structure such that it cannot but continue indefinitely—time is powerless to stop it. The only way in which experience could possibly come to an end is if it changed from having-anattitude to not-having-an-attitude; but this change, like all other changes, must come from within experience itself, even though, unlike all other changes, it would be a change to end all changes. The fact of experience, then, is independent of any absolute time (it is ontologically prior to time: there is appearance of time only because of the fact of experiences—ap-


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pendix vi refers), and experience itself must necessarily continue to exist until such time as it determines itself to stop ‘having-to-do with existence’. And when I see this necessity, that I must have a future, the suggestion that I might arbitrarily be annihilated (at death or at any other time) will fare no better than its brother a few minutes ago. We promised ourselves ‘an absolutely certain proof of rebirth’. Have we got it? Our proof is based on direct observation of present experience at any time; and we have shown that that experience appears to the observer as a system with certain structural features. In particular, the system is seen to involve past experience as an integral part of its structure and to be autonomous in time. Since this is direct observation of present experience, it shares the same degree of certainty as the actual existence of that experience, neither more nor less. See appendix iv. But how certain is the existence of our present experience? It is absolutely certain; for it is impossible to doubt. Anyone who genuinely, honestly and in good faith, is doubting the existence of his present experience is successfully deceiving himself; for of one thing he is certain, namely that he is doubting his present experience. He has no doubt whatever of the existence of his present experience, which is, precisely, his doubting. (It will be seen that there are two orders of consciousness involved here: if I am doubting my experience, that is itself a certain complex cognitive experience, which, non-cognitively, I do not doubt—appendices iv & vi refer.) But does certainty about the structure of experience make rebirth equally certain? If we see with absolute certainty that all experience without exception must involve previous experience, we shall be absolutely unable to entertain the idea of any first beginning to experience; and if we see with absolute certainty that it is autonomous, we shall be absolutely unable to entertain the idea of any ending to experience not brought about from within experience itself. But can we be absolutely certain that all experience without exception, and not just present experience, has these characteristics? Might not the structure of experience change? It is absolutely impossible to conceive that the structure of experience could be other than it is, for the reason that our conception of the structure of experience is itself experience and therefore the structure of experience: if the structure of experience changed there would no longer be any conception of the structure of experience (or indeed of anything else), and it is absolutely impossible to conceive of a state of affairs devoid of conception, because where there was no conception there would be no state of affairs. More simply: the structure of experience is the structure of existence or being, and if that structure changed I should cease to be—and it is impossible to imagine that situation, because there would not then be any situation to


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imagine. If we see that it is inherently impossible to conceive of experience with a different structure, we shall be absolutely unable to suspect that a different structure could ever exist. This proof of rebirth is absolutely certain: it is as certain as our own existence. By sheer reflexion at any time it is possible for us to see in the structure of our present experience that our existence is necessarily without a beginning and that it necessarily continues until it puts an end to itself from within. And to the extent that we see these necessities at all we see them with certainty: but the trouble is that to see them is by no means easy—that needs hard work.

appendix i There is a curious but widespread assumption, based on the confusion of internal and external point of view, that pain is a physical object. It is assumed that my toothache as I now endure it is absolutely identical with the decayed tooth as the dentist unfeelingly prods it, or rather with the associated neural modifications, which are also observable, at least in theory. The dentist, who has a practical outlook, says that he sees my tooth (and perhaps also my nerve if it is exposed); but a neurologist who imagines that he is investigating my behaviour will say that by means of his various instruments he sees my pain. (A medical student recently explained that ‘pain is carried by nerves’, which seems to be the current teaching.) The neurologist is maintaining, in other words, that body-consciousness is the object of eye-consciousness. It is far less absurd to say, as we normally do, that the objects of eye-consciousness and of body-consciousness are the same—that we see what we touch, that it is the decayed tooth that is aching. This confusion of points of view is also responsible for the assumption (to which the very names bear witness) that the phenomena known as telaesthesia and telekinesis are sporadic and anomalous manifestations of ‘action at a distance’. (At a distance from what, pray? From my intention?) But once the ambiguity is understood and it is seen that they involve two radically discrete levels of experience without possible means of communication, they cease to be sporadic anomalies, and, though they will continue to disconcert the materialist, they are found to be a regular and persistent feature (namely feedback) of our equally ambiguous ‘existence in the world’. From this double point of view, every perception and every action (the two are not inseparable) is a violation of the deterministic laws of matter.


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appendix ii Satisfaction is certainly satisfaction of craving. But satisfaction of craving is not appeasement of craving; just the contrary; it is continuation of craving. ‘We never seek things, but the pursuit of things’, to quote Pascal again. And this continued satisfaction of craving clearly depends on the fact of feeling. Satisfaction, it should seem, is the mode of existence of craving, and implies that this mode of existence is satisfactory. But feeling may be unpleasant or neutral as well as pleasant, and how can unpleasant or neutral feeling be satisfactory? It is clear that by satisfactory we must understand least unsatisfactory; and to say that the mode of existence of craving is satisfaction is then to say that craving always exists in the least unpleasant mode available.6 But though this mode of craving, or attitude, is the least unpleasant that is available, it may still be very unpleasant (or merely neutral) from a reflexive point of view. Our nature (or attitude, or mode of craving) changes, then, when it is no longer the least unpleasant available. And this implies the continual presence of a tacit consciousness with a perpetual discrimination of feeling at varying levels of generality; for without such consciousness there would be no possible way of having alternative attitudes constantly available. Craving is the gradient of feeling, and it exists in the least unpleasant mode available: this requires that there should be a perpetual implicit transverse consciousness of feeling (as having a certain gradient—positive or pleasant, zero or neutral, or negative or unpleasant) at varying levels in the progressive actualization of the future. The future as such actually exists simply as our perpetual expectancy, or absolute faith, that the present world will continue (to intend is, precisely, to have this faith). This expectancy is always justified down to some level of particularity, though down to which level we only discover in the event: it is, in fact, the lowest level of generality at which the gradient of feeling is favourable. Thus the world we get, however unexpected, is never entirely unexpected; and it cannot but be the least unpleasant available. We are always living in the best of all possible worlds. See appendix v. Notice, incidentally, that the change in my attitude regarding sweet tea, which is impossible without tacit consciousness, does not necessarily involve explicit deliberation and reasoning; or if it does, these things, being essentially derivative, are not involved in the same way as tacit consciousness. I am quite likely to say ‘I used to enjoy sweet tea, but somehow I don’t seem to fancy the idea any more’; and in fact we commonly find that 6.  [From here to the end of paragraph:] This won’t do.


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our habits have changed unawares (it is fashionable, but mistaken, to say unconsciously; the psychologist, in his own way, is as big a nuisance here as the physiologist—he fails to see that there is a non-cognitive order of consciousness (which may be reflexive) that must be elucidated before a cognitive order of consciousness, whether involving reflexion or not, can be considered).

appendix iii What, when I am reflecting, I call my self (but not my ego, for which refer to appendix iv) is the something that on every occasion of change remains unchanged; but since on each occasion it is a different character that remains unchanged, my self is changing perpetually. At any given level of particularity (or down to such level; for the general is implicit in the particular) my self is permanent for an indefinite but not infinite period (in other words, it changes spasmodically or as a step-function); but there is no time when it is not changing at some level or other. It will be seen that consciousness at all levels is self-consciousness, that there is a tacit and transverse structural characteristic to be found in all conscious experience without exception. My self or nature, at any given level, can be regarded as a kind of field (existing, not representational), and in particular as the field of all possible (or rather, as we shall see, probable) field-changes of the next lower order of generality. But a field-change is a change from one field to another, and this can only happen at the intersection of two fields, which two fields together define the field of next highest order. (Although a second field is the exact contrary of the first and in this is totally determined, there is an infinite number of ways in which the second field can be the exact contrary of the first. I am convinced that this is sugar in that jar on the table; I put some in my tea and taste it, and I become convinced that it is not sugar in the jar. Here the change is determined: if there is to be a change at this level it must be this change. But it is quite undetermined whether I shall eventually be convinced that it is salt, or arsenic, or chalk, or soda, or any other of a multitude of white substances all of which are equally not sugar, that is in the jar. Every change has an essential element of indeterminacy; but indeterminacy, as we shall see later, is essentially an equivocal phenomenon. appendix vii refers.) Thus my nature, at any level, is a field of field-intersections of lower order (which lower-order fields are themselves fields of field-intersections of still lower order, and so on downwards, approaching but not reaching a limit). And, conversely, the intersection of any two fields of the same order


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defines my nature down to a certain level. If these fields each combine qualities in the province of the same sense they (at some level) indicate that sense (which at any time is the present orientation of that particular sensual world about the centre of reference ‘this’—‘The eye is that in the world whereby one is a perceiver and a conceiver of the world. The ear… The nose… The tongue… The body is that in the world whereby one is a perceiver and a conceiver of the world.’ (Sa¬åyatana Saµyutta, xii,3)); if these fields each combine qualities in the provinces of different senses they similarly indicate my mind (‘The mind is that in the world whereby one is a perceiver and a conceiver of the world.’ (Ibid.)). ‘There are, friend, these five faculties with various provinces and various pastures, which do not enjoy one another’s pasture and province; that is to say, eye-faculty, ear-faculty, nose-faculty, tongue-faculty, body-faculty. The meeting-place of these five faculties with various provinces and various pastures, which do not enjoy one another’s pasture and province, is mind; and mind enjoys their pasture and province.’ (Majjhimanikåya, v,3) (A second illustration of the structure of a field, but on a different level, may be useful. I choose to live only in capital cities. I may stay in one most of the time, but if I leave it I always go direct to another one. Whichever I happen to be in I have the choice of all the others in the world, but I never go anywhere else. Any journey I make (i.e. the intersection of any two subordinate fields—Madrid-Lisbon, Madrid-Delhi, Tokyo-Athens—will equally well define the field ‘living-in-capital-cities’.)

appendix iv It would be a mistake to suppose that we can observe our conscious experience of anything—of a significant or oriented object, that is to say—while being at the same time completely disengaged or detached from that experience: the experience-of-an-object that we observe and the consciousness observing that experience-of-an-object are intimately related structural features of a single but complex experience-of-an-object. Every experience, in fact, is a structure involving an infinity of different levels of generality: every object consists of a plurality of more particular objects (or details) against a unifying background of greater generality. An experience-of-anobject involves an infinite hierarchy of fields (or backgrounds) of different levels converging upon a lower, and strictly ideal, limit or vanishing point—absolute objectivity, instantaneous determinacy, pure unsignificance. Every experience, then, is consciousness of a field, which is necessarily consciousness of consciousness of the fields of next lower order: as long as


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a field does not change I am conscious of that field—in other words, I am self-conscious—, and this consists precisely in my being conscious of the changing of subordinate fields, in my being conscious of being conscious of those fields—in other words, in my cognizing them (for cognition is essentially consciousness of consciousness). (appendix vii will show that this account is rather simplified: consciousness of a field is consciousness of all probable changes of subordinate fields. We need not consider this here.) But consciousness of each of these more particular fields, until it changes, is in turn consciousness of consciousness of still more particular fields, and so on indefinitely. (Note, however, that it is only with the running up and down of this change from one level to another that the hierarchical structure of experience becomes explicitly manifest to reflexion; and reflexion, in any case, since its attention will at any time be directed to one part rather than another, never sees the entire hierarchy all at once except in a kind of recognitive synthesis.) From this it should be clear that experience-ofan-object at any level of generality, being at once both consciousness and cognition (or consciousness of consciousness at a lower level), can always be described as consciousness of experience-of-an-object of a lower level of generality, or rather, as consciousness of a number of such experiences. And, correspondingly, the object of an experience-of-an-object (of a going, an eating, a breathing, a speaking, a thinking), that is to say an object-tobe-experienced (a road-to-be-journeyed, a cake-to-be-eaten, a breath-tobe-inhaled, a talk-to-be-delivered, a thought-to-be-developed), can be described as a number of experiences-of-objects (of lower order) to be conscious of. But in order that we should have consciousness observing consciousness of consciousness, consciousness observing experience-ofan-object, an appropriate attitude (which can, however, never be totally absent if cognition, which is synthesis (composition), is to be possible) will be necessary: an object-to-be-experienced must be approached no longer simply in its capacity as a number of experiences-of-objects (of lower order) to be conscious of, but also and at the same time as a structure-tobe-observed. There is then one complex reflexive experience-of-an-object comprising consciousness of a number of experiences-of-objects and at the same time observation as a single structure, namely consciousness, of those same experiences-of-objects by that same consciousness. There is consciousness as consciousness. The word observation, however, implies a total detachment that has found no place in our description: in cognition (consciousness of consciousness) there is no more than a semi-detachment, and in reflexive consciousness (consciousness ‘observing’ itself) the separation is very small. (The expres-


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sion ‘observation by consciousness’ is misleading also in another way: it suggests a certain agency on the part of consciousness. But in fact, ‘to be observed by consciousness’ means simply ‘to be actually present in a selfrevealing manner’. ‘Consciousness of…’ must always be understood as ‘the actual presence of…’.) Accordingly, we shall call the single complex experience we have just described sheer reflexion. In unreflexive experiences an object appears: in sheer reflexion a system of fields appears, one7 pair of adjacent levels at a time, each field being my nature or self down to that level. (This sheer reflexive mode of experience can be developed by practice. A simple way of attaining it is to ask oneself ‘what am I doing?’: it will be found that one is already conscious of the answer.) Thus what is revealed in sheer reflexion is self-structure; and this structure is only mal-observed when it is observed at all, that is to say, with attempted detachment. In that case reflexion is no longer sheer but compromised, and what it reveals is a hypostatized ego (for it is an attempt, necessarily unsuccessful, to cognize an unchanging field, to approach it as an object proper). (It was indicated in the essay and above that reflexive consciousness of a sort must always be present in some degree, however small; but we must also note that reflexive consciousness is by no means always self-observation as such.) Since tacit (or self-) consciousness is always involved as a structural necessity of experience-of-an-object, and sheer reflexion involves the explicit appearance of that structure within the unity of a single experience-of-anobject, the certainty inherent in sheer reflexion is the certainty that is tacit consciousness and it is at the same time the certainty of the present existence of tacit consciousness and of the other structural features of experience-ofan-object. And the certainty that is tacit consciousness is the certainty of the present existence of my experience-of-an-object.

appendix v We have said (appendix ii) that craving always exists in the least unpleasant mode that is available; that intention, by refusing to admit the possibility of any alternative, preserves the present world down to the lowest level of generality at which craving, the gradient of feeling, is favourable. In other words, our world remains unchanged at any level until such time as the gradient of feeling there changes sign from positive to negative—that is to say until that field ceases to be pleasant—when intention withdraws its 7.  [Remainder of this sentence is crossed out in pencil.]


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veto and the world changes at that level. (Note, however, that stable fields with negative gradients may occur as part of a composite reflexive consciousness.) But the structure of the world is hierarchical, and the gradient of feeling of a field at any level is not more than the increase or decrease of pleasantness in the succession of fields of next lower order. ‘Pleasant feeling, friend Visåkha, is pleasant in its persisting, unpleasant in its changing.’ (Majjhimanikåya, v,4) And the feeling of each of these lower-order fields itself has a gradient; for feeling only pleases or displeases in virtue of its gradient. ‘There being feeling, craving exists; with feeling as condition, craving.’ (D⁄ghanikåya, ii,2) And so on, downwards. It will be clear that a change in sign of the gradient of feeling at any level implies a succession of sign-changes of the gradient of feeling at a lower level, and each of these in turn a succession at a level still lower. But the change in sign of the gradient of feeling is always arbitrary (we shall see in appendix vii that this change occurs when one of the available or alternative fields becomes more pleasant; and this can be discovered only in the event); and it is this adventitious or gratuitous character of the change that constitutes the reality or objectivity of the world (even the reflexive measures we take to control changes of feeling—voluntary actions—are strictly empirical). We now see that since these arbitrary changes work their way upwards from the particular to the general (the higher levels do not change until the lower ones have lost stability) the details of any object must necessarily appear as more real, more independent, than its general existence when compared with its details. Nobody will deny the reality of that patch of sunlight on the grass, but are we so sure about the real existence of such an object as a fine July? The same considerations apply, however, to each detail; and we are remorselessly driven towards the ideal limit of an object that would be instantaneous, or absolutely real—a contradiction. (The quantum physicists would appear to be suggestive that an ultimate particle, when considered not apart from experience, must be defined as just such a contradictory object—determinate only for an instant of no time. If such an object is to exist it will be indeterminate; that is to say, though it must exist hierarchically and with some orientation, it might exist with any orientation. A particle, presumably, is either determinate and non-existent or indeterminate and existent, but not both. The account of a field and its surroundings attempted in appendix vii also seems to recall certain descriptions we have read of a particle as a system of probability-waves. It is certainly to be expected that all descriptions of experience should ultimately reveal similar structures.)


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appendix vi Two successive fields of the same order are mutually exclusive, since each is the opposite of the other. They cannot co-exist, therefore. And this is why intention, in keeping a field in being, cannot admit the possibility of an alternative field; for to envisage an alternative field is, precisely, to bring it into being. There is no delay at all. No sooner do I seriously propose to be doing something than I find (if I look) that I am doing it, whether it is to be imagining a bath or to be taking one (in the second case I find myself already engaged in picking up my soap and towel and so on). Now, the relationship between a given field and its more general background field is that of a means to an end (and that end is itself a means to an end of still higher order, and so on8 until the field ‘having-to-do with existence’ is reached; but this is the limit, since existence is not a means to anything). Thus intention, in preserving a field, is keeping in being a means to an end. And is this not the definition of action? Action, as it actually takes place, is precisely the continued existence of one particular means to an end, and of one only: if a means to an end is kept in existence, then action is taking place (whatever the resistances may be), and the necessary condition for this is that no contrary action should also be taking place. Two fields of the same order are mutually exclusive: two different means to the same end cannot co-exist. It is inherently impossible for me to be going from A to B by two routes at the same time. I can only be raising my arm if I am intending to be raising it (we are not speaking of volition, which is essentially of a more complex order), that is to say if I am not in the least suspecting that there is any other possibility—that, in any one of a multitude of different ways, I am not raising it. When I act there is resistance; action, that is to say, is not distinct from temporalization: a resistant (or material) world and a temporal world are the same thing. But conversely there is no resistance unless I act: only if I have some end in view can there be any obstacle to overcome. If9 I am intending to be lifting a bucket of water there is a resistance, and this resistance appears as heaviness. Similarly, but more subtly, all the qualities or distinctive features that make up the variety of my world (colours, shapes, timbres, flavours, textures, temperatures, to give some of the simplest; as 8.  [Remainder of this sentence is crossed out, partly in pencil and partly in pen, apparently on three separate occasions. Over ‘until’ is penned:] indefinitely; though reflexively. 9.  [From here to end of paragraph:] Needs Revision.


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well as those, more complex, that appear only when my attitude is more evidently emotional—beauty, ugliness, hatefulness, fearfulness, and the like—; but the list is endless) are simply the various modes of existence of the resistances involved in all action or intention, of the inevitable delays while lower fields arbitrarily change sign. A tiger is terrible because I am fearing; a bucket is heavy because I am lifting; a leaf is visible (i.e. coloured and spatial) because I am looking. These qualities fall into five main groups, and it is thus we can speak of having five senses; and since qualities from different groups freely combine in mixed fields we can speak of having a mind (the whole of my nature is involved in the least of my actions). Action, as we have described it, appears to be essentially conservative; yet we normally think of it as just the opposite—to act is to change something. But there is no contradiction. Action changes the present world by withdrawing its protection from unpleasant fields: it ceases not to doubt, when the gradient of feeling at some level arbitrarily changes sign, that the present world at that level completely changes. See appendix vii. (Volition or voluntary action—essentially a reflexive intention to be intending—here, as elsewhere, complicates the situation but does not alter the principle. Any description of memory must involve at least this order of complexity.) Thus the continued existence of an oriented (significant) and variegated temporal world is nothing else than the consequence of the progressive encounter of the present orientation of the world—our senses and mind—with adventitious changes of feeling. Our world is always a hierarchy of fields, whose present orientation is the sum total of all past reorientations, that is to say, of past action; for action, in changing the present world by restricting the level of its change, is ceaselessly reorienting it. And since an orientation only exists when a subordinate orientation is changing (the orientation, for example of a particular verse to other verses or to a poem as a whole, only exists so long as the orientation of the present word to the verse is changing, that is, by the fact of my hearing a poem recited—appendix vii will make this clearer), it is action that keeps an oriented world in being; and were action to cease so would the world. The price of our world is perpetual action.10 ‘Which, monks, is old action? The eye is old action…, the ear… the nose…the tongue…the body…the mind is old action… And which, monks, is new action? It is the action that is done at present by body, speech, or mind… And which, monks, is cessation of action? It is the attaining of release by cessation of body-action, speech-action, and mind-action… And which, monks, is the practice leading to the cessation of action? It is just 10.  [Remainder of this appendix crossed out in pencil.]


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this noble eightfold path…’ (Sa¬åyatana Saµyutta, xv,1) [The expressions ‘old action’, purå~akamma, (as used in this Sutta) and ‘ripening of action’, kammavipåka, do not appear to mean at all the same thing, and should not be confused. The latter is one of the four acinteyyåni or ‘untheorizables’. (Cf. Aπguttara, IV,viii,7)]

appendix vii It might be asked how the choice is made which particular one of a multitude (probably not unlimited) of possible fields shall actually replace the present field when the world changes at any level. An attempt to answer this question throws some light on the peculiar nature of tacit self-consciousness. A field, we already know, is what remains unchanged when its subordinate fields change. We know, too, that a field, when it changes, is replaced by any one of a multitude of new fields, each of which is the exact contrary of the original field (and this implies the unchanging background of a more general field). But we remarked (in appendix iii) that a field-change can only occur at the intersection of two fields. A field-change, then, should be understood as a kind of radical change of direction defined by (or defining) a more general field. Thus it appears that at the moment of change the old field is the new field and that the only change is one of direction. This might suggest that we ought to say that a field is always the field that would supplant it were it to change at that instant. But this brings us back to the starting point—which field is it that would at that moment supplant the original one? It is precisely this that is not evident. If I reflect on a visual pattern, a leafy bush, for example, I discover that I am perceiving one particular feature, a leaf, and that there is a surrounding zone that appears as ‘not fully perceived’—perceived, that is to say, in less detail. I notice, however, that this surrounding zone, though not fully detailed, is not totally undifferentiated but is crystallized into a number of ‘half-perceived’ details, a mass of individual leaves or bunches of leaves. Finally, if I reflect carefully, there is sometimes to be noticed, just before my attention actually switches, one particular ‘half-perceived’ leaf (which in retrospect may be found not always to have been the nearest to the centre) that is more clearly perceived than the rest; and this leaf turns out to be the one that eventually became the new centre of attention. But I am not absolutely certain beforehand that this particular leaf is the predestined one, or even that my attention is on the point of switching (indeed this situation may arise and subside again without any switch of attention). (In more


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general experiences there is noticeably a longer ‘premonition’.) By reflecting I can never discover any necessary connexion between the present field and a peripheral field. A coming event, it seems, casts its shadow before, but I am never sure it is a coming event—indeed I find that by voluntary action I can substitute another. (Before proceeding we must remark that whatever we say has to be applicable to all modes of perception of spatial extension. Perception of spatial extension, though convenient for reflexion, is misleading in that we may be led to suppose that all temporalization is spatialization. But in other kinds of perception, even visual, temporalization takes the forms of qualities that are not essentially spatial—the flavour of honey, for example, or a particular shade of blue—, and here such expressions as ‘surrounding zone’ and ‘peripheral fields’ must not be understood spatially. Time appears in every sensual world, but not space. Furthermore, what we say has to be applicable to intersections of mixed fields—a red-hot lump of iron, for example—; and, finally, it must be applicable at all levels of generality.) It seems, then, that we encounter the following difficulty. In my ‘observation’ of a stable field I never discover any other field that I know to be the alternative of the present one; it is only when a field actually changes that I discover it to be capable of changing. And we have already seen (appendix vi) that it is enough merely to admit the possibility of an alternative field for the present field to change forthwith. It seems that in order to ‘observe’ a field as it really is we have to disturb it: a field reveals itself as able to change only by changing—but then it is no longer the same. Perhaps, then, we are wrong in assuming that a field ‘really is’ at all; perhaps the original question is inherently unanswerable. It may be that a field only exists as an ambiguity. If this is so we must be prepared to resort to equivocal language in order to describe it. Let us see what happens if we do so. We are faced with the paradox that a field is always replaced by one out of a multitude of contrary fields, and yet at the moment of changing a field is the one it is replaced by. We suggested earlier that a field is always the field that would supplant it were it to change at that instant; but this was not satisfactory. Let us modify it by saying that a field is always all those fields that might supplant it were it to change. But since a field is always replaced by a contrary field, we must also say that a field is always not any of those fields that might supplant it. We can reconcile these two statements by saying that a field is always all its alternative fields and that these fields are absent. But what is an absent field? Clearly it must be a field that is not present; but it must be not present in such a manner that its absence is evident. In a word, it must be in some sense relatively not


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present: it must be less present than the present field. We found, when looking at the leafy bush, that the peripheral fields were perceived in less detail. This provisionally suggests that in comparing two fields the present field will be the one with the greater detail and the absent field will be that with less detail—and this would clearly be a relative matter. The present field, then, might be regarded as some kind of simultaneous synthesis of all its alternative absent fields; and this would still be true at the instant of its changing, since the single alternative field at that instant is no longer absent—the two fields are then one and the same. We may also note that since a field (though not its subordinate fields) remains unchanged so long as it is stable it would equally well be defined by any of its possible alternatives (given the general arrangement of my room from a certain point of view, I can indifferently define the place of the chair by saying it is immediately to the left of the table, to the right of the bed, or below the window). This account, furthermore, would allow us to see how it is that except at the instant of a field’s changing, consciousness of that field is never consciousness of it as consisting of the possibility of being some other field (which would immediately entail its changing). A field is always all its alternatives; but a plurality of alternatives is a contradiction in terms. Consequently, to be conscious of a field as being a plurality of alternatives is no longer to regard those alternatives as alternatives, that is to say, as possibilities. Only when there is one alternative and one only does that alternative appear as a possibility; and only then does a field change. But it does not change to that possibility; for it already is that possibility: it merely ‘changes direction’. Thus to be possible, here, is to be actual. What, now, are we to understand by the expression ‘change of direction’? The present field, so long as it is stable, is surrounded by a multitude—a zone—of absent fields. The present field, in the centre, is detailed; the absent, peripheral, fields are less so. But with the singling out by peripheral attention of one of these absent fields at the expense of the others (which thereupon tend to disappear), the detail of the present field decreases and that of the particular absent field increases. There11 then comes an instant when the degree of detail is the same in each, and at that instant both fields are present. This is to say that they form one field; and this one field is none other than the more general field that we are already acquainted with, which is now explicitly in evidence as the common element in one actual change instead of implicitly so as that in a number of (as we shall see) only probable changes. Upon that the two fields suddenly become separated; 11.  [Referring to this sentence:] Not quite.


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but it is found that the formerly absent field is now the more detailed and is therefore present, and that the formerly present field has now become less detailed and is therefore absent (it is also now seen to be one among many such absent fields). Thus ‘change of direction’ consists in the transfer of the centre of attention (which is direction of intention) from one aspect of a more general field to another; it is the switching of presence from the present field to one of its surrounding fields. So far so good. The question now arises, however, what the structure of a field must be in order that this (theoretical) possibility should sometimes be distributed amongst a multitude of alternatives, and sometimes concentrated in one (when it ceases to be merely theoretical). In other words, what is the nature of the simultaneous synthesis mentioned above? It is clear, first, that all the absent fields are present together; for otherwise the distribution would simply be a rapid succession of single absent fields, and this will not do because the present field would then be one absent field at a time and one only, which is not so. In the second place, an unchanging simultaneous synthesis by itself would make impossible any tendency towards concentration of emphasis in a single field (or in several in turn), which we know by the evidence of reflexive consciousness to occur. So, assuming that a field is ambiguous, let us say that there is both a succession and a synthesis (indeed, we have already seen in appendix ii that consciousness must, in some way, be both progressive and transverse). We may call this a quasi-synthesis, whose ambiguous nature will perhaps become clearer as we proceed. (We shall continue to use the prefix quasi to indicate ambiguity.) In this way we have all the absent fields present simultaneously, and, at the same time, a perpetual variation in the manner of distribution of emphasis amongst them. (And how rapid is this succession? Evidently as rapid as the field-changes of next lower order. Thus the lower the order the faster it is.) It seems clear that the degree of attention to an absent field must correspond absolutely to its degree of pleasantness12 (there is, of course, no explaining this necessity, except perhaps to say that it is necessary in order to explain any explanation of it), and thus the most pleasant absent field will tend (since there is, in fact, opposition) to dominate the remainder by draining attention (and therefore pleasantness13) away from them. Since each of the absent fields possesses a gradient of feeling, it will be seen that a quasi-synthesis of all these fields must imply a quasi-synthesis of their gradients (which exists as opposition to the tendency of any absent fields to dominate the rest): there is a little 12.  [This word is drawn through in pencil.] 13.  [These three words are drawn through in pencil.]


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more to say of this in a moment. It is plain that a change of direction only operates between the field that is the centre of attention and a field of one peripheral zone; whereas, so long as the centre of attention remains fixed, variation of emphasis within the peripheral zone is in the province of the quasi-synthesis, and at that level does not involve a change of direction. The peripheral zone, it will now be clear, consists of a multitude of absent fields all differentiated and all given at once; and it is this combination of one and many that is the essence of the ambiguity. To be an absent field is to be given simultaneously with a number of other such fields, to co-exist with them; and the reason for an absent field’s lack of detail is evidently the dispersion of attention amongst a crowd of rival claimants. Consciousness of a field is consciousness of a dispersion of alternative fields, but it is not consciousness of them as such. Consciousness of a field necessarily involves a certain attitude regarding that field—not, to be sure, the pretended totally detached attitude of the scientist, nor even the semidetached attitude of cognition, nor yet the small separation of reflexive consciousness proper, but none the less a kind of slight fissure, an inherent quasi-attitude enough to confer on the field its existence, its elementary objectivity (without which it would never be manifest to reflexion)—, and that attitude, or quasi-attitude, consists in an ignoring of the implications of certain features of the field and its surroundings (for it cannot ignore the features themselves). Consciousness of a field, thus, is self-consciousness,14 and in the structure of a field there is already an inherent, pre-reflexive, element of reflexivity: a field exists as a blindness to its own nature. The15 gradient of feeling of a stable field as a whole (we are theorizing, of course) necessarily shares the equivocal structure of that field: on the one hand there are the gradients of the absent fields, and on the other there is the gradient of the quasi-attitude of the field towards itself (a quasi-gradient in fact); and the former are quasi-subordinate to the latter. It will now be evident that the gradient of feeling of a field as we described it earlier (appendix v) must at the same time be regarded as a complex consisting of the gradients of the absent fields and the quasi-gradient of these gradients (which last is indifferently either the dispersion of these gradients or the gradient of the succession of subordinate fields regardless of individual pleasantness; and this quasi-gradient must always be positive or there would be no dispersion of absent fields). We have already remarked that a field remains stable so long as its gradient is positive, but changes as soon as the 14.  [‘self’ is crossed out.] 15.  [This paragraph is crossed out in pencil.]


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gradient changes sign. The gradient of every field as a whole being positive (negative fields are part of positive composite reflexive fields), that of an absent field, in so far as it is absent, is negative; and the positivity of the present field as a whole depends on the positivity of the quasi-gradient (to which the gradients of the absent fields are quasi-subordinate: the present field, so to speak, confers positivity on all the absent fields to keep them in being, and negativity to keep them absent). So long, then, as the quasigradient of the gradients of a field’s absent fields remains positive the field as a whole is stable, but as soon as it reaches the point of changing sign, of no longer being pleasant (we might almost say quasi-pleasant; for, since it is present even at out worst moments of agony, this pleasantness of ‘having-to-do with existence’ is extremely subtle and elusive), the quasiattitude ceases to be maintained. In consequence the field appears as the possibility of changing; which is to say that it does change. Towards the instant of change all the absent fields except one, while still being absent, tend to sink out of sight; and this is due to the growth in pleasantness of that one absent field as a field. For, as it becomes more pleasant, pleasure in absence or dispersion, since it involves pleasure in that field’s absence, grows less. In other words, the quasi-gradient of the present field tends to zero, and its gradient is about to become the inverse of that of this particular field. As soon as this is completed the present field vanishes, and the absent field becomes present. There is no certainty, however, that a field that is pleasant as a field while absent, will for that reason continue to be so when it becomes present. It is, in fact, quite illegitimate to say, as we have been, that an absent field becomes present; or rather, it is only legitimate if its illegitimacy is pointed out. On the other hand, the new field cannot exist unless it is stable and its gradient positive. And since, at the instant of change, the quasi-gradient of the preceding field was zero, every change is, in effect, a change for the better. (Instead of change to an unstable field, which is impossible, there is a change for the better at a more general level.) The new field, then, is immediately complete with quasi-attitude and dispersion of absent fields. The present field’s absent fields are all the other fields appearing at the same time;16 and the intensity of each one’s appearance is its intrinsic likelihood of being then alternative to the present field (and thus reasoned thinking is provided with its data, as sheer reflexion with its evidence, by the quasi-attitude). In other words, all the manifold possibilities that I 16.  If the parallel with the quantum theory suggested in appendix v should be verified, it would appear that a field always has the same exact number of absent fields.


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am at one time at each level co-exist as rival probabilities of my being any of them; and in this way there continues to be an objective orientation or world. To17 the extent, however, that sheer reflexion rids itself of the quasi-attitude these probabilities will disappear; and ultimately there will cease to be absent fields, and therefore any fields at all. If the world consists entirely of probabilities, develop certainty and it must vanish. (Sheer reflexion discovers no indication in the present field which of its absent fields the immediately preceding, and now destroyed, present field may have been [though it cannot doubt that there was one]; and this is evidently the origin of the mathematical Theory of Groups.) A18 field is necessarily an equivocation, and can only exist as such. It should by now be clear that the absolute faith we spoke of earlier (appendices ii & vi) as characteristic of intention or action is nothing other than this quasi-attitude, this blindness, that is necessary for the existence of a field. Intention is the refusal to admit that a field may change; it is the assumption that a field is incapable of change. It is the assumption that is implied in the words ‘I am’ (but it is not the explicit view ‘my self exists’, which is of a different order). It is the certainty that I exist, the certainty that is tacit consciousness (appendix iv). And we have seen that this quasiattitude or conceit has a quasi-gradient, and craving therefore is one of its structures (indeed every attitude is a mode of craving); this conceit, then, may be described as the desire ‘I am’. (Cf. Khandha Saµyutta, ix,7.) Moreover this quasi-gradient is positive: the tacit assumption of a field’s endless existence is always pleasurable. My self, then, is simply a mirage; its being is an equivocal structure consisting of the pleasant delusion of permanence; and this implicit certainty of my existence is absolute—on the precise condition that I fail to see this equivocal structure completely for what it is (though I may well theorize about it, which is another matter). So it is that this absolute self-certainty, the condition of all action and therefore of the very existence of the world, itself rests upon nescience. And persistent sheer reflexion is self-destructive. ‘All structures are impermanent— when, understanding, thus he sees, he turns away from suffering: this is the path of purity.

17.  [This and the next sentences are crossed off in pencil.] 18.  [This paragraph is crossed off in pencil.]


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All structures, next, are suffering— when, understanding, thus he sees, he turns away from suffering: this is the path of purity. All natures, lastly, are not-self— when, understanding, thus he sees, he turns away from suffering: this is the path of purity.’ (Dhammapada, 277-9)

pali-english conversion table (It should be noted that these equivalents are valid within the context of this particular work only.) Attå.......................................self Abhijånåti............................to recognize Avijjå....................................nescience Asm⁄ti chanda......................desire ‘I am’ Upådåna..............................habitualness, stability of attitude or of mode of craving Kamma.................................action Cetanå..................................intention Jånåti, ñå~a.........................to cognize, cognition Ta~hå....................................craving, gradient of feeling Dhamma..............................nature (i.e. Essence), idea, field, habit, attitude Nåmar¨pa............................significant or oriented object, world of objects Pajånåti, paññå...................to understand, understanding Pa†igha.................................resistance Papañca................................dispersion Parijånåti.............................to see completely Phassa...................................encounter Bhava...................................being, existence Maññati................................to conceive Manasikåra..........................attention Mano....................................mind Måna....................................conceit


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Vijånåti, viññå~a................to be conscious, consciousness Vedanå.................................feeling Saπkhåra..............................structure (the word is used in the present work in three senses, (i) ‘mode of (ontological) structure’, (ii) ‘structural component’, (iii) ‘what has (ontological) structure’, ‘what is individualized or determined’—by saπkhåra the last is intended) Sañjånåti, saññå..................to perceive, perception, quality Sampajånåti, sampajañña..to be aware, awareness Sa¬åyatana...........................five-senses-and-mind, orientation


A notebook labelled Commonplace Book was found among Ven. Ñå~a­ v⁄ra Thera’s effects. On the inside front cover was written: All before 27.vi.1959. Footnotes or parts thereof which are in square brackets are editorial. c/o = crossed out, r/b = replaced by.


Commonplace Book


kamma i It will not be contemned of anyone; Who thwarts it loses, and who sees it gains; The hidden good it pays with peace and bliss, The hidden ill with pains. It knows not wrath or pardon; utter true Its measures meet, its faultless balance weighs, Times are naught, tomorrow it may judge, Or after many days. (from The Light of Asia—Edwin Arnold)


ii The Buddhas and the Arahats alone have discovered my true nature, in its very essence, and have triumphed over me. All other beings but live under my despotic rule: I put them to death and I make them to live; I am the deity who giveth them the prosperity they enjoy, and I bring about the doing of good deeds1 and of evil deeds2 among mankind. Gods, emperors, kings, rich and poor, strong and weak, noble and ignoble, brute creatures, and the happy and unhappy spirits existing in this world and in the upper and in the lower worlds—all these I elevate or cast down to their respective states. I humble the high and I exalt the low, according to their several works. Therefore am I, indeed, the God who ruleth the Universe. (from Karma’s Proclamation of His Omnipotence, tr. from Tibetan by Lama Kazi Dawa-Sandrup. Quoted in Milarepa, p. xiv.)


‘I have naught to do with homage, Någita, nor has homage aught to do with me. Whosoever cannot obtain at will, easily and without 1.  pleasure? 2.  pain?


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difficulty this happiness of renunciation, this happiness of seclusion, this happiness of calm and this happiness of enlightenment, which I can obtain at will, easily and without difficulty, let him enjoy that dung-like happiness, that sluggish happiness, that happiness gotten of gains, favours and flattery.’ A. v,50 4


Milindapañha IV. 3 [tr. Rhys Davids] 1. ‘Venerable Någasena, it was said by the Blessed One: “For it is the Dhamma, O Våse††ha, which is ‘the best in the world,’ as regards both what we now see, and what is yet to come.” But again (according to your people) the devout layman who has entered the Excellent Way, for whom the possibility of rebirth in any place of woe has passed away, who has attained to insight, and to whom the doctrine is known, even such a one ought to salute and to rise from his seat in token of respect for, and to revere, any member of the Order, though a novice, and though he be unconverted. Now if the Dhamma be the best that rule of conduct is wrong, but if that be right then the first statement must be wrong. This too is a double-pointed problem. It is now put to you, and you have to solve it.’ 2. ‘The Blessed One said what you have quoted, and you have rightly described the rule of conduct. But there is a reason for that rule, and that is this. There are these twenty personal qualities, making up the Sama~aship of a Sama~a, and these two outward signs, by reason of which the Sama~a is worthy of salutation, and of respect, and of reverence. And what are they? The best form of self-restraint, the highest kind of self-control, right conduct, calm manners, mastery over (his deeds and words), subjugation (of his senses), long-suffering, sympathy, the practice of solitude, love of solitude, meditation, modesty and fear of doing wrong, zeal, earnestness, the taking upon himself of the precepts, recitation (of the Scriptures), asking questions (of those wise in the Dhamma and Vinaya), rejoicing in the S⁄las and other (rules of morality), freedom from attachment (to the things of the world), fulfilment of the precepts—and the wearing of the yellow robe, and the being shaven. In the practice of all these things does the member of the Order live. By being deficient in none of them, by being perfect in all, accomplished in all, endowed with all of them does he reach forward to the condition of Arahatship, to the condition of those who have nothing left to learn; he is marching towards the highest of all lands. Thus it is because he sees him to be in the company of the Worthy Ones (the Arahats) that the layman who has already entered

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on the Excellent Way thinks it worthy in him to reverence and to show respect to the Bhikkhu, though he may be, as yet, unconverted. It is because he sees him to be in the company of those in whom all evil has been destroyed, because he feels that he is not in such society, that the converted layman thinks it worthy of him to do reverence and to show respect to the unconverted Bhikkhu. It is because he knows that he has joined the noblest brotherhood, and that he himself has reached no such state, that the converted layman holds it right to do reverence and to show respect to the unconverted Bhikkhu—because he knows that he listens to the recitation of the På†imokkha, while he himself can not—because he knows that he receives men into the Order, and thus extends the teaching of the Conqueror, which he himself is incapable of doing—because he knows that he carries out innumerable precepts, which he himself cannot observe—because he knows that he wears the outward signs of Sama~aship, and carries out the intention of the Buddha, while he himself is gone away far from that—because he knows that he, though he has given up his hair and beard, and is unanointed and wears no ornaments, yet is anointed with the perfume of righteousness, while he is himself addicted to jewelry and fine apparel—that the converted layman thinks it right to do reverence, and to show respect to the unconverted Bhikkhu.’ 3. ‘And moreover, O king, it is because he knows that not only are all these twenty personal qualities which go to make a Sama~a, and the two outward signs, found in the Bhikkhu, but that he carries them on, and trains others in them, that the converted layman, realising that he has no part in that tradition, in that maintenance of the faith, thinks it right to reverence and to show respect to the converted Bhikkhu. Just, O king, as a royal prince who learns his knowledge, and is taught the duties of a Khattiya, at the feet of the Brahman who acts as family chaplain, when after a time he is anointed king, pays, reverence and respect to his master in the thought of his being the teacher, and the carrier on of the traditions of the family, so is it right for the converted Bhikkhu to do reverence and to pay respect to the unconverted Bhikkhu.’ 4. ‘And moreover, O king, you may know by this fact the greatness and the peerless glory of the condition of the Bhikkhus—that if a layman, a disciple of the faith, who has entered upon the Excellent Way, should attain to the realisation of Arahatship, one of two results must happen to him, and there is no other—he must either die away on that very day, or take upon himself the condition of a Bhikkhu. For immovable, O king, is that state of renunciation, glorious, and most


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exalted—I mean the condition of being a member of the Order!’ ‘Venerable Någasena, this subtle problem has been thoroughly unravelled by your powerful and great wisdom. No one else could solve it so unless he were wise as you.’ Milindapañha IV 1 67. ‘Venerable Någasena, your people say that everything which a Tathågata has to accomplish that had the Blessed One already carried out when he sat at the foot of the Tree of Wisdom. There was then nothing that he had yet to do, nothing that he had to add to what he had already done. But then there is also talk of his having immediately afterwards remained plunged for three months in ecstatic contemplation. If the first statement be correct, then the second must be false. And if the second be right, then the first must be wrong. There is no need of any contemplation to him who has already accomplished his task. It is the man who still has something left to do, who has to think about it. It is the sick man who has need of medicine, not the healthy; the hungry man who has need of food, not the man whose hunger is quenched. This too is a double-headed dilemma, and you have to solve it!’ 68. ‘Both statements, O king, are true. Contemplation has many virtues. All the Tathågatas attained, in contemplation, to Buddhahood, and practised it in the recollection of its good qualities. And they did so in the same way as a man who had received high office from a king would, in the recollection of its advantages, of the prosperity he enjoyed by means of it, remain constantly in attendance on that king—in the same way as a man who, having been afflicted and pained with a dire disease, and having recovered his health by the use of medicine, would use the same medicine again and again, calling to mind its virtue.’ 69. ‘And there are, O king, these twenty and eight good qualities of meditation in the perception of which the Tathågatas devoted themselves to it. And which are they? Meditation preserves him who meditates, it gives him long life, and endows him with power, it cleanses him from faults, it removes from him any bad reputation giving him a good name, it destroys discontent in him filling him with content, it releases him from all fear endowing him with confidence, it removes sloth far from him filling him with zeal, it takes away lust and illwill and dullness, it puts an end to pride, it breaks down all doubt, it makes his heart to be at peace, it softens his mind, it makes him glad, it makes him grave, it gains him much advantage, it makes him worthy of reverence, it fills him with joy, it fills him with delight, it shows

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him the transitory nature of all compounded things, it puts an end to rebirth, it obtains for him all the benefits of renunciation. These, O king, are the twenty and eight virtues of meditation on the perception of which the Tathågatas devote themselves to it. But it is because the Tathågatas, O king, long for the enjoyment of the bliss of attainment, of the joy of the tranquil state of Nirvåna, that they devote themselves to meditation, with their minds fixed on the end they aim at. 70. ‘And there are four, reasons for which the Tathågatas, O king, devote themselves to meditation. And what are the four? That they may dwell at ease, O king—and on account of the abundance of the advantages of meditation, advantages without drawback—and on account of its being the road to all noble things without exception-and because it has been praised and lauded and exalted and magnified by all the Buddhas. These are the reasons for which the Tathågatas devote themselves to it. So it is not, great king, because they have anything left to do, or anything to add to what they have already accomplished, but because they have perceived how diversified are the advantages it possesses, that they devote themselves to meditation.’ ‘Very good, Någasena! That is so, and I accept it as you say.’ Li antropologi furono i primi che maugiasseo carne numana—Laudi ‘Cammentario’


Catupa†isambhidå—Attha (Expansion/Sign Situation/Identification of referent/Interpretation of Signs) Dhamma (Reference/Ideas3); Nirutti (Usage); Pa†ibhå~a (Symbolization/Perspicuity [of Expression]) N⁄tattho Literal Interpretation (of words or gesture) Neyyattho Qualified   etaµ atthaµ viditvå—having grasped [felt (known) the interpretation of] the (sign) situation.




Anyone with an orderly mind can master the Abhidhamma Pi†aka, but only an arahat can master the Suttas, and even he not all of them.


Kamma vipåka is harder to accept than Rebirth.

10 Only when there is joy in the Suttas is there joy in the Vinaya. 3.  alloting of interpreted signs to the proper context.


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11 A thing may be said to exist when it is capable of being perceived by any being whatsoever, even though that being is not then capable of perceiving it, but is no longer living.4 12 A thing may be said to exist when it is potentially capable of being perceived: there need not actually be, at that time, any potential percipient; it is enough that there could be. Thus, to discover whether a thing exists, one must ask first, if any ‘being’ could conceivably perceive it, and second, if he could actually perceive it (perhaps there should also be a second percipient to eliminate ‘hallucinations’). If, the first answer is ‘No’, the thing is a ‘bogus entity’; if it is ‘Yes’, and the second answer is ‘No’, the thing is a ‘real entity’ but which does not happen to exist now. This definition is probably circular, since it assumes the ‘existence’—potential at least—of a percipient. On the other hand, if the definition is restricted to ‘physical objects’, only the ‘existence’ of perception—which is not ‘physical’—is assumed. What is a ‘physical object’?5 13 The great error of the Abhidhammikas is that they imagine themselves to be practising vipassanå. 14 It is most fortunate that the realization of nibbåna depends upon one’s understanding the four Truths oneself, and not upon one’s success in explaining them to others. 15 ‘It has often been said that Metaphysics is a hybrid of science and poetry. It has many marks of the hybrid; it is sterile, for example.’ —Meaning of Meaning, p. 82 16 ‘Physical5 objects really exist in themselves.’ This is true, because it is no more than saying that certain objects of one’s perceptions do not appear to originate within one’s consciousness. Otherwise, the words are meaningless; that is to say, they stand for no ‘referent’ in the actual order. But it should be remembered that the ‘actual order’ is limited not by the nature of ‘physical objects’ but by the nature of our perceptions.

4.  [This section is crossed out.] 5.  [From here to the (editorially placed) β on p. 384 is crossed out.]


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17 A ‘physical object’ is what is potentially capable of being perceived by more than one being. 18 A ‘physical’ phenomenon exists but does not occur. A ‘mental’ phenomenon occurs but does not exist. 19 The ‘occurrence’ of a ‘mental’ phenomenon is direct experience, and cannot be further analysed. It is the fundamental term, to which all things are ultimately reducible. (Everything can be reduced to ‘occurrences’, but Nibbåna is absolute ‘non-occurrence’.) 20 A ‘physical object’ is any object or stimulus of consciousness, the origin of which is not to be found within the series of consciousnesses (or occurrences) of which that consciousness is a/the latest member. 21 Someone else’s consciousness neither occurs nor exists. Thus, one cannot ‘have’ someone else’s consciousness, nor can it be the object of one’s own consciousness. (To read another’s mind may consist in having the same object of consciousness or to have his (?brain) conformation as one’s object of consciousness—but what if he is remembering past feeling? The ‘trace’ theory would assume this, but it is not satisfactory: what about memory of previous existences?—But memory can be mental, and a state of mind reflected by the physical conformation of the (?brain). This would answer.) 22 1. a. Were one to say, ‘Sabbe dhammå aniccå/dukkhåti’, it might be understood that there is no way out of impermanence or suffering. b. Were one to say, ‘Sabbe saπkhårå anattåti’, it might be understood that the asaπkhata is attå. or 2. a. Sabbe saπkhårå aniccåti may be short for Sabbe dhammå aniccå saπkhatå pa†iccasamuppannå. (Not satisfactory.) b. Sabbe dhammå anattåti is as it stands. (Does saπkhårå as above necessarily include ‘inanimate objects’?) or 3. a. Sabbe saπkhårå aniccåti/dukkhåti may refer only to what is specifically stated as saπkhato, that is, mind, and matter connected with mind (i.e. excluding ‘inanimate’ matter). Herein, what is saπkhata is evidently anicca dukkha.


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b. Sabbe dhammå anattåti includes all mind and matter, in order positively to exclude attå.β

23 Logic flattens the Dhamma as a map-maker flattens the world. 24 As a globe represents the world, so the Suttas represent the Dhamma; and as a flat map is true only in the centre, so a logical view is true only of that Sutta (or part of it) upon which it is centred. 25 By seeing that all things are anattå one realizes nibbåna, which is none of these things. 26 One soon discovers what one had learned to expect, that having read the Suttas there is no fresh wisdom to be found in other books. 27 Attå is desirable but a myth; anattå is the unhappy fact; and nibbåna is the escape from suffering—neither unhappy nor a myth. 28 The world is void of attå, but nibbåna is void of anattå. 29 ‘He who needs others is for ever shackled; he who is needed by others is for ever sad.’ —Chuang Tzu XX b. (tr. Waley, 3 Ways of Thought, p. 63) 30 It is your understanding that matters, so do not quarrel with others if they disagree with you. 31 The Abhidhamma Pi†aka perverts the understanding. 32 If the Suttas are not the Buddha’s Teaching, then I am not a Buddhist. 33 The Commentaries are sometimes right—sometimes. 34 You do not wish to be misunderstood? Then keep your mouth shut. 35 You do not mind being misunderstood? That is progress indeed. 36 A Bodhisatta progresses by trial and error. At last he hits upon the right answer, and tries it, and becomes a Buddha. (Corollary. A Bodhisatta is not infallible.)


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37 The Buddha tells us how to avoid the Bodhisatta’s mistakes; and so save time. 38 The glittering icy peaks of the Suttas are too often hidden from our eyes by the dusty haze rising from the Commentarial plains. 39 Q. Why the Buddha rather than Jesus? A. Jesus wept. 40 Nibbåna is not non-existent; it is non-existence—of lust, hate, and delusion. 41 Each of us creates man in his own image; and thus we come to misunderstand each other. 42 We never feel our isolation and invulnerability so much as when others are angry with us. It is a salutary experience. 43 Learn to duck in time. 44 Our gratitude is due to the Buddha, not for having attained extinction, but for having told us about it. 45 If you disagree you are not bound to say so. 46 By speaking you estrange others; by keeping silent you estrange yourself. 47 Indigestion constipates. 48 Nothing takes one so much unawares as other people’s anger. 49 Let your adversary have the last word: he will cling to it, as he would to your coat, while you slip from his grasp and go your way unhindered. 50 You do not understand a thing until you can write it down. 51 Without knowing exactly what is meant by nibbåna do not think that you understand the Buddha’s teaching.


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52 If we have difficulty in imagining nibbåna, that is because there is nothing to imagine: when we imagine, we always imagine something. 53 How often how misleading the Commentary is! 54 When doing vipassanå, it is of the greatest importance to keep the mind from straying beyond what is said in the Suttas, and into the Abhidhamma Pi†aka or the Commentaries. 55 You cannot disagree with the Buddha’s teaching, you can only shut your eyes. 56 The most wonderful thing in the world is silence. And how noisy thoughts are! 57 Dhammå = Ideas. This is the clue to much of the Buddha’s teaching. 58 [Saπkhårå = Formations (usually, will), form, what is formed (usually, the living being). Dhammå = (usually, correct) Ideas (of things).] 59 All formations are impermanent [A (correct) idea6 (of things)] All formations are suffering [A (correct) idea (of things)] All (correct) ideas (of things) are not-self [The conceit ‘I am’ does not arise when an idea is cognized (i.e. when a thing is thought of) correctly, or without ignorance.] 60 Even ‘things’ are merely ‘(our ideas of) things’; and that is why they are called ‘dhammå’. Sabbesu dhammesu sam¨hatesu, sam¨hatå vådapathå pi sabbe’ti. We can only speak of our thoughts. 61 ‘The Dhamma’ = ‘The Correct Idea of Things’ (and therefore a Teaching, a Rule, a Law). Dhammånupassanå = Contemplation of (correct) ideas (of things). And so on. But who will understand?

6.  Correct idea = idea correctly cognized = idea correctly associated with other ideas.


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62 Attå and anattå are not attributes of things, the one hypothetical, the other actual; they are merely wrong and right view of things, respectively, and arise only in the observer’s mind. 63 ‘So-and-so is anattå’ means either, ‘So-and-so has none of the characteristics of an hypothetical attå’, or, ‘So-and-so, when correctly thought about, does not give rise to the thought of attå’. But any hypothesis about attå is preceded by the thought of attå. In the mind of an arahat the thought of attå cannot arise: he does not need to rationalize about ‘characteristics of an hypothetical attå’. Sabbe dhammå anattå means that an arahat does not endow any idea with attå. 64 The Buddha does not say, ‘There is no self’, for those who believe in self would think it comes to be annihilated, as Vacchagotta; the Buddha says that when there is right view the idea of self does not arise. 65 Saπkhåra is not a gladstone bag: it will not accomodate phassa and manasikåra (at least not as marbles). 66 Pain is painful: this is the basic fact. (Cast your bread upon the waters!) 67 Idiots to think that the way out can be anything but extinction. 68 S⁄la is something to hang on to when we are seized by attacks of emotion—what samådhi or paññå for us then? 69 The passionate mind cannot understand that there is pleasure in dispassion, or that the dispassionate mind does not desire passion. Sometimes the mind alternates rapidly between the two states, and in either is convinced that the other is unattractive. 70 You have an excuse? And to whom, pray, will you offer it? 71 Before we can reject the world we must accept it; and this is not easy; for it is sometimes most disagreeable. 72 The world is consumed by passion and, what is worse, thinks passion admirable. 73 Until you have practised and mastered the Buddha’s Teaching, and


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then found it defective, you are not entitled to look for some other solution. 74 Most scientists suffer from naive incredulity. 75 Even if you cannot gain concentration, at least you can be mindful. If you are always mindful you may gain concentration. But whether you do or not, perpetual mindfulness is the remedy against depression. If you are always mindful, even when tired or disinclined, you will have no regrets. This is your final refuge; and it cannot fail; but it is not achieved without perpetual effort, and perpetual effort is not easy. Unless you determine on this effort you are lost. This is written in fair weather: read it in foul. 76 Demand mindfulness of yourself as a right: accept concentration as a favour. 77 Lust is insatiety with the pleasurable false idea ‘I am’. Resistance is satiety with the unpleasurable false idea ‘I am’. Ignorance is satiety with the neutral false idea ‘I am’. 78 Even as the pleasurable false idea ‘I am’ grows, so lust for (unsatiety with) it grows. And even as lust for (unsatiety with) the pleasurable false idea ‘I am’ grows, so attention repeatedly turns towards the pleasurable false idea ‘I am’. 79 Even as the unpleasurable false idea ‘I am’ grows, so resistance against (satiety with) it grows. And even as resistance against (satiety with) the unpleasurable false idea ‘I am’ grows, so attention repeatedly turns away from the unpleasurable false idea ‘I am’. 80 Thus lust is slow, and resistance is quick, to disappear. 81 Only if you are not quite convinced yourself will you be anxious to convince others: you are seeking confirmation.7 Those who know don’t speak.

7.  You also wish to prove to yourself that you cannot be convinced—success in convincing others will be accompanied by disappointment.


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82 Attention turns towards/away from a pleasurable/unpleasurable idea ‘I am’.8 This is fundamental; and this turning (or increase/decrease) of attention is called ‘lust’ or ‘aversion’ as the case may be. Thus ‘asm⁄ti chando’. 83 Mind is the track on which the train of thought runs. 84 Mind is the behaviour of thought. (mode of thinking) (thought-behaviour) (My mind is the behaviour of my thought.) The Mind is the behaviour of thought hypostatized. 85 Matter is not-mind. Matter is the behaviour of [sense-]perception. 86 ‘Dhamma’ is more than just an idea; it is an ‘I’ interpretation. Thus ‘Sabbesu dhammesu sam¨hatesu, sam¨hatå vådapathå pi sabbe’ti’ means that when asmimåna has been removed there is no assertion ‘I am this or that’. Cf. Chandam¨lakå sabbe dhammå. 87 Saµsåra is deducible from the existence of ignorance. How? 88 Ignorance is present self-differentiation from the past (all ideas of self are interpretations based on memory). Were there no past, ignorance could not arise. Moreover, that past must have been a self-differentiated past (memory of a present self-differentiation),9 for what is differentiated from cannot be undifferentiated. There is thus no first moment of ignorance to be found. Furthermore, so long as there is still ignorance there is no good reason to expect a change in the order of things which is continued existence. 89 Self is satisfied craving—an infinitely pleasurable state—; and ‘the Self’ is satisfied craving hypostatized. Self is a myth because there is no such thing as satisfied craving. Pleasurable feelings arise; the thought of such feelings as permanent is itself pleasurable; attention to such thoughts rises to a maximum; but attention to thoughts (= thinking) modifies them, and its rising to a maximum accelerates the modification of these pleasurable thoughts and the consequent appearance of 8.  Better: Attention to (manasikåra—thinking about) a pleasurable/unpleasurable idea ‘I am’ increases/decreases. 9.  ‘Self’ is a psychological context necessarily involving time.


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fresh ones of the same kind; and thus the spiral proceeds. The increase and maintenance of attention to such pleasurable thoughts is craving; and the thought of craving as satisfiable, that is to say, that this spiral might turn to everlasting steady circular spinning, ‘I am’—an inherent impossibility. 90 Self is satisfied craving. Craving is unsatisfied self. 91 All craving is unsatisfied craving, that is to say, it involves the idea (or assumption) that craving is satisfiable. Perception of impermanence, in removing this false assumption, removes craving. 92 Dependent arising (pa†iccasamuppåda) has neither duration nor instantaneity: it expresses, as it were, the gradient of the curve of existence taken over an infinitesimally short period. It always describes what is now happening, namely, growth of established consciousness; and that is why death, no matter when we meet it, entails birth. We see, too, why the series is non-reversible [phassapaccayå vedanå no vedanåpaccayå phasso]. 93 Chaque dimension est une facon de se projeter rainement vers le Soi. (J.-P. Sartre.) p. 18310 94 As mind (mano) is the behaviour of thought, so eye (cakkhu) is the behaviour of sight, and so also with the other four. 95 Indriyåni vippasannåni refers to other people. 96 The mind is the way the body thinks. The body is the way the mind acts. 97 All [negational] activities11 (Saπkhåra) are manifestations of unwisdom (avijjå), which is the tacit assumption of permanence. 98 The answer is simple but unacceptable.

10.  [‘Each dimension is the For-itself’s way of projecting itself vainly toward the Self.’ B&N, p. 137] 11.  [[negational] activities c/o, r/b: determinations]


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99 (i) There must be a way out: for bhavata~hå is choice (of bhava): and to choose implies alternatives—thus, ‘An earliest point of bhavata~hå, monks, is not evident… And yet it is evident “with this as condition, bhavata~hå”.’ (A. X,vii,2) (ii) This alternative to bhava12 is necessarily not describable in terms of bhava (and therefore not describable at all—cf. D. ii,32). 100 De la boite de Pandore où gronillaient les maux de l’humanité, les grecs jirent sortir l’espoir après tous les autres, comme le plus terrible de tous.’—A. Camus, L’été à Alger13 101 Il faut gagner sa mort. (We must earn our death.) 102 Dependent arising is not in time—it is time. 103 All gerundives are impermanent. All gerundives are suffering. All gerunds are not-self. 104 It is altogether impossible for anyone who takes life seriously to understand the Buddha’s Teaching. 105 You are wasting your time!—Well, why not? What else is it for? 106 ‘… l’attitude spirituelle la plus répandue dans notre siècle éclaire celle qui s’appuie sur le principe que tout est raison et qui vise à donner une explication au monde.’14—Camus, p. 62 107 The existence of laws (in the scientific sense) is a characteristic (of the structure) of consciousness. Thus to speak of the law of dependent arising is only to beg the question; it is to suppose that dependent arising

12.  I do not mean vibhava, which is a kind of bhava—consciousness of nothing, a chimera. 13.  [‘From Pandora’s box, where all the ills of humanity swarmed, Greeks drew out hope after all the others, as the most dreadful of all.’ From: Summer in Algiers {Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays, Vintage Books, New York, 1955, p. 113}] 14.  [… the most widespread spiritual attitude in our century shed light on that which depends on the principle that reason is all and which aims to give an explanation to the world.]


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might be other than it is—and yet still be a law. It has been said15 that there can be consciousness of a law but not a law of consciousness. Yo pa†iccasamuppådaµ passati so dhammaµ passati. Yo dhammaµ passati so pa†iccasamuppådaµ passati: this might be rendered ‘He who sees dependent arising sees law: he who sees laws sees dependent arising’. Dependent arising is not a law; it is not even the law: it is law. Dependent arising is the only certainty we have; for the rest there are only probabilities—there are laws, there are laws of laws, and there are laws of those laws, and dependent arising states this fact. It has also been said16 that nothing is certain, ‘Mais ceci du moins est une certitude’.17 108 The only professional writer who is anywhere near understanding the Suttas is Sartre—and he has not read them. The scholars—who have read them—are a mile away. But, alas! to come near to understanding is not yet to understand. 109 Nåmar¨papaccayå phasso (D. ii,2)—a feedback system of psychokinesis and clairvoyance (clairaudience etc.). 110 You fill your world with certainties, which for me are not certainties at all. 111 Ah the blessed innocence of the scientists! 112 How to waste your time: look for an explanation of consciousness, ask to know what feeling is. 113 If you explain consciousness you must then explain how you explained it; and this explanation, too, will need explaining; and so in its train will this third explanation: in brief, to explain consciousness you must assume consciousness. And we do well to shut up this intolerable paradox in the unconscious, that last excuse and refuge of modern man. 114 The Unconscious, though it contains some remarkable things, will not hold water. 15.  Sartre, p. 22 [= B&N, p. lv] 16.  C. p. 76 [= Camus] 17.  [‘But this at least is a certitude.’]


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115 —What are you doing?—Answering your question. 116 —Can you explain consciousness?—No. —Then how can you assume that it starts at birth and stops at death? 117 The Suttas are perfectly intelligible, but what they describe is hard to grasp. If, then, you do not follow the Suttas it is a mistake to run to the Abhidhamma Pi†aka (or the Commentaries) for illumination: nobody would dream of trying to understand the theory of relativity from a school primer of arithmetic, yet that theory is not unintelligible—it is not easy, that is all. 118 The Commentaries are not to be rejected on principle: they are to be rejected if they are seen to be inadequate or misleading. And this will happen only if some understanding of the Suttas is gained in spite of the Commentaries. 119 J.-P. Sartre—W. Ross Ashby—J.B. Rhine. Between them they hold the key—a curious trinity! Consciousness—Feedback—Psychokinesis & Clairvoyance: never one without the others.18 120 A saint, by popular definition, is one who successfully resists temptation. But to resist temptation one must take good care to keep temptation continuously before one. And since to resist temptation is painful, what else is a saint but one devoted to self-torture? Perhaps this is why saints, especially in books, spend so much of their time reforming whores (who are certainly entitled to their usual fee for services rendered). 121 ‘Qu’est-ce nos principes naturels, sinon nos principes accoutumés? Une différente coutume donne d’autres principes naturels. Cela se voit par expérience. Les pères craignent que l’amour naturel des enfants ne s’éfface. Quelle est donc cette nature sujette à être effacée? La coutume est une seconde nature qui détermine la première. Pourquoi la coutume n’est-ell pas naturelle? J’ai bien peur que cette nature ne soit elle-même qu’une première coutume, comme la coutume est une seconde nature.’19—Pascal. This statement, if true, is enough to establish rebirth 18.  [This note is crossed out.] 19.  [What are our natural principles … (see translation at Sketch, p. 350) … is a second nature.


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[For our nature or habit is an absolute system, whose structure does not alter with time: ‘That a system … should be absolute it is necessary and sufficient that … the fluxions of the set … can be specified as functions of that set and of no other functions of the time, explicit or implicit’—Ross Ashby. That is to say, if we are created ex nihilo then we are created complete with a nature or set of habits: and, therefore, with a past; for each nature ‘détruit la première’—it can only appear on the ruins of an earlier nature: ‘… le projet antérieur s’effondre dans le passé à la lumière d’un projet nouveau qui surgit sur ses ruines …’—Sartre.20 And this is because any modification of my nature is only possible under the sign of an unmodified and more fundamental nature: ‘Si les … importance’—Sartre (p. 587).21 But this more fundamental nature is nothing else than the more general project of which the two more particular and mutually exclusive projects, the earlier and the later, are alike exemplifications. And this more fundamental nature, in its turn, may, upon occasion, be modified in a similar way.] 122 Mind is the glue that holds the world together. 123 Name-and-form: Form is the static of name. Name is the dynamic of form. 124 The association of ideas is the intersection of fields. 125 Dhamma is subjective intention. Saπkhåra is objective intention, or the product of intention—the breaths; thoughts and pondering; feeling and perception (all objective as in nåmar¨pa). 126 ‘But according to our conclusions, the laws of physics are a property of the frame of thought in which we represent our knowledge of the objective content, and thus far physics has been unable to discover any laws applying to the objective content itself.’—Eddington, The Philosophy of Physical Science, p. 217. 20.  [L’Être et le Néant, p. 555 (‘… the prior project collapses into the past in the light of a new project which rises on its ruins …’ B&N, p. 476)] 21.  [‘If the changes which occur in my environment can involve modifications of my projects, they must be subject to two reservations. First, they cannot by themselves effect the abandoning of my principal project which, on the contrary, serves to measure their importance.’ B&N, p. 505]


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127 ‘That my will moves my arm is not more intelligible to me than if somebody said to me that he could stop the moon in its orbit.’—I. Kant, Dreams of a Spirit Seer, p. 117. 128 ‘I dotti di regola nimangono dotti.’—K.E. Neumann 129 There is no ‘conflict of feelings’: our present attitude (however brief) is stable at all levels of feeling. 130 Craving is the gradient of feeling (unpleasant → pleasant). 131 Self-consciousness (conscience (de))—to feel Consciousness of (conscience de)—to perceive You feel a feeling, but you perceive (not a percept but) matter. And in perceiving matter you feel a feeling. The perceiving of matter is a percept; a percept is pleasant, painful, or neutral; thus perceiving matter and feeling a feeling are inseparable. A feeling is cakkhusamphassajå vedanå (i.e. (of)) A perception is r¨pasaññå (i.e. of) 132 Matter is the inertia of objects, the sluggishness of things. 133 ‘Pour l’Américain, penser à quelque chose qui l’embête, ca consiste à faire tout ce qu’il peut pour ne pas y penser.’22—J.P. S. 134 ‘L’esprit de sérieux … [The spirit of seriousness has two characteristics: it considers values as transcendent givens independent of human subjectivity, and it transfers the quality of ‘desirable’ from the ontological structure of things to their simple material constitution] … constitution matérielle.’—Sartre, p. 721 [B&N, p. 626] 135 ‘A spokesman for the masculine inverts stated the bisexual theory in its crudest form in the following words: “It is a female brain in a male body.” But we do not know the characteristics of a “female brain”. The substitution of the anatomical for the psychological is as frivolous as it is unjustified.’—Freud, Three Contributions 136 ‘Our own death is indeed unimaginable, and whenever we make the 22.  [See CtP, L. 40 (13.ii.64).]


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attempt to imagine it we can perceive that we really survive as spectators. Hence the psychoanalytic school could venture on the assertion that at bottom no one believes in his own death, or to put the same thing in another way, in the unconscious every one of us is convinced of his own immortality.’—Freud, ‘Thought on War and Death’, Collected Papers IV, p. 304. 137 ‘A word as the point of junction of a number of ideas, possesses, as it were, a predestined ambiguity.’ —Freud, Interpretation of Dreams (The field of points of transition from one idea to another.) 138 ‘C’est qu’en effet la proposition cogito ergo sum résulte—si elle est bien prise—de l’intuition que conscience et existence ne font qu’un.’23—J.P. Sartre, L’Imaginaire, p. 207. 139 To be actual is to be possessed of a hierarchical organization approaching a limit. This must not be confused with the independence of the object, although they are usually associated. In fact there sometimes occur non-actual objects that are independent, and also all action consists in preventing some particular aspect of independence. 140 Feeling exists as self-consciousness (of) feeling. Self-consciousness (of) feeling is craving (gradient of feeling). Craving (gradient of feeling) exists as self-consciousness (of) craving. Self-consciousness (of) craving (gradient of feeling) is series of feeling (of lower order). Each feeling (of lower order) exists as self-consciousness (of) feeling. Thus we have self-consciousness (of) feeling is self-consciousness (of) series of self-consciousness (of) feeling (of lower order). 141 Pa†igha is an arbitrary step-change in the gradient of feeling, it is the source of resistances—but there must already be a gradient of feeling, that is to say, action.24 142 ‘Il apparait clairement que la chose principale au ciel et sur la terre est d’obéir longtemps et dans une même direction. À la longue il en résulte 23.  [‘Actually, the proposition cogito ergo sum, if well grasped, results from the intuition that consciousness and existence are one.’] 24.  [‘that is to say, action’ is pencilled out]


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quelque chose pour quoi il vaille la peine de voir sur cette terre comme par exemple la vertu, l’art, la musique, la danse, la raison, l’esprit, quelque chose qui transfigure, quelque chose de raffiné, de fou ou de divin.’—Nietzsche.25 143 ‘Méfiez vous de ceux qui disent: “ceci je le sais trop pour pouvoir l’exprimer”, car s’ils ne le peuvent c’est qu’ils ne le savent pas ou que par paresse, ils se sont arrêtés à l’écorce.’—Camus, p. 116.26 144 ‘La vanité est si ancrée dans le cœur de l’homme, qu’un goujat, un marmiton, un crocheteur se vante, et veut avoir ses admirateurs. Et les Philosophes mêmes en veulent. Ceux qui écrivent contre la gloire, veulent avoir la gloire d’avoir bien écrit; et ceux qui le lisent, veulent avoir la gloire de l’avoir lu; et moi qui écris ceci, j’ai peut-être cette envie; et peut être que ceux qui le liront l’auront aussi.’—Pascal XXIV.27 145 ‘Nous ne cherchons jamais les choses, mais la recherche des choses.’— Pascal XXIV.28 146 Indeterminacy is a pause in determinacy, and I am that pause. Time is a pause in instantaneousness, and I am temporalization. 147 All my possibilities exist now in various degrees of absence, and my being consists simply in choosing which one shall be present. 148 ‘J’avais passé beaucoup de temps dans l’étude des sciences abstraites; mais le peu de gens avec qui on peut communiquer m’en avait dégoûté. 25.  [‘It seems evident that the principal thing in heaven as on earth is to steadfastly persevere in a single direction. In the long run the result is something worth seeing on this earth, as for example virtue, art, music, dance, logic, spirit, or something that transfigures, something refined, mad, or divine.’] 26.  [‘What will you do with those who say: “This, I know it so well that I can’t explain it”? For if they can’t, it is because they don’t know it or because through laziness they have stopped at the bark.’] 27.  [‘Vanity is so much anchored in the heart of man that a boor, a cook, a picklock, pride themselves and want to have their admirers. And philosophers too. Those who perceive glory want that glory for having written well; and those who read it want the glory for having read it. And I, who write this, perhaps I have this glory, and perhaps those who will read me will have it too.’] 28.  [‘We never search for things, but for the search of things.’]


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Quand j’ai commencé l’étude de l’homme, j’ai vu que ces sciences abstraites ne lui sont pas propres, et que je m’égarais plus de ma condition en y pénétrant que les autres en les ignorant, et je leur ai pardonné de ne s’y point appliquer. Mais j’ai cru trouver au moins bien des compagnons dans l’étude de l’homme, puisque c’est celle qui lui est propre. J’ai été trompé. Il y en a encore qui l’étudient que la géométrie.’—Pascal XXIV.29 149 ‘McTaggart … held that he could prove by purely philosophical reasoning the eternity of each human mind, and could show that its eternity would appear under the form of time as beginningless pre-existence and endless post-existence out up into an infinite sequence of finite embodied lives.’—C.Q. Broad, Journal of Parapsychology, Dec. 1956 (‘A Half-Century of Psychical Research’) 150 ‘It is, of course, the ideal of science to reach unambiguous answers to all such general questions of fact. The assumption is that,30 with appropriate methods of study, any question can in time be properly answered.’—J.B. Rhine, Journal of Parapsychology, June 1956 151 ‘In more elementary problems, and in special cases, Dirac’s symbols are associated with direction, and that is the notion we have of them to start with; but this notion is extended to include anything that can make a difference to the way in which one numerical characteristic of a system can be associated with another, and it has become more or less divided from any kind of graphical representation.’—Eddington, New Pathways in Science, p. 236 152 ‘Heisenberg’s principle has a very curious consequence when … [this passage is already quoted at EL. 25, q.v.] … automatically begins to spin one way or the other. To say that there is definitely no spin would be to claim an accuracy which we have seen to be impossible. 29.  [I have spent much time in the study of the abstract sciences; but the paucity of persons with whom you can communicate on such subjects disgusted me with them. When I began to study man, I saw that these abstract sciences are not suited to him, and that in diving into them, I wandered farther from my real object than those who knew them not, and I forgave them for not having attended to these things. I expected then, however, that I should find some companions in the study of man, since it was so specifically a duty. I was in error. There are fewer students of man than of geometry.] 30.  [Ven. Ñå~av⁄ra Thera’s italics]


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The most “restful” system we can contemplate is one equally likely to have any value of the spin up to half a unit in either direction. Knowing then the probability distribution, we can compute the average energy of spin of a large number of these restful atoms; in macroscopic physics the average is all that concerns us. The more complicated the system, the greater will be the number of directions or orientations defined in our picture of it; and since each of these has its own uncertainty of spin, there is on the average a considerable amount of angular momentum present which is of this irreducible kind. In short, in ascribing geometry to the system we are compelled by the Uncertainty Principle to ascribe to it energy of constitution. Observation may show us that more than this minimum energy is called energy of excitation; it may be radiated or otherwise passed from system to system.’—Ibid., p. 106 153 (N.B. F.A. Lindemann—The Physical Significance of the Quantum Theory.) 154 To get from one space to another takes time: to get from one time to another takes space. 155 ‘Il semble que le grandes âmes … [We want love to last and we know that it does not last; even if, by some miracle, it were to last a whole lifetime, it would still be incomplete. Perhaps, in this insatiable need for perpetuation, we should better understand human suffering, if we knew that it was eternal. It appears that great minds are, sometimes, less horrified by suffering than by the fact that it does not endure. In default of inexhaustible happiness, eternal suffering would at least give us a destiny. But we do not even have that consolation, and our worst agonies come to an end one day. One morning, after many dark nights of despair, an irrepressible longing to live will announce to us the fact that all is finished and that suffering has no more meaning than happiness.] … que le bonheur.’—Camus, L’Homme Révolté, p. 323 [The Rebel, p. 227] 156 You have other fish to fry. 157 You are breaking the deterministic laws of Science every time you allow an electron to shift.


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158 Two spaces in the same time* Transcendence Two times in the same space Pa†haviµ maññati – he conceives earth Pa†haviyå maññati – he conceives internality of earth Pa†havito maññati – he conceives externality of earth Pa†haviµ me ti maññati – he conceives ‘earth is mine’

*Time has thickness = 1. This defines time.

159 A star, unlike a planet, having no size, must needs twinkle. There is more in this than meets the eye. 160 An unchequered colour, too, being rigorously equivalent to a point, must twinkle. 161 What does Humanity care? 162 ‘Let the enquiring scholar labour with incessant zeal … [see NoD, Preface (c)] … his parrot-like echo.’—S. Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 24 163 ‘The thinker who can forget in all his thinking also to think that he is an existing individual, will never explain life. He merely makes an attempt to cease to be a human being, in order to become a book or an objective something, which is possible only for a Munchausen. It is not denied that objective thought has validity … [see L. 41, 22.iii.63] … in becoming purely objective.’—S. Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 85 164 If there exists at all an absolute system—that is, one to which the group property applies—then there exists an observer whose sole property is to conceive only absolute systems. And this observer is himself an absolute system. Thus, if the group property applies anywhere, it applies everywhere. If the observer should remark ‘All systems are absolute: all things are things’, he himself is included in its scope. 165 If any thing exists at all, it exists as an absolute system. Now an absolute system possesses the group property. But if an absolute system is to exist there must also exist an observer for whom that absolute


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system exists: that is to say the observer must have the property of conceiving absolute systems, and since he, too, exists, he must be an absolute system. Thus, if any thing exists at all, it must possess a group structure such as will account also for an absolute observer for whom that thing is a thing. And since the observer exists, he will need a further observer for whom to exist. Thus the group structure must justify its own application or validity. 166 Truth is = ‘Truth is’ is. And so on. Cf. S. Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 170. 167 ‘When the question of truth is raised in an objective manner, reflection is directed objectively to the truth, as an object to which the knower is related. Reflection is not focussed on the relationship, however, but upon the question of whether it is the truth to which the knower is related. If only the object to which he is related is the truth, the subject is accounted to be in the truth. When the question of truth is raised subjectively, reflection is directed subjectively to the nature of the individual’s relationship: if only the mode of this relationship is in the truth, the individual is in the truth even if he should happen to be related to what is not true.’ (ibid. p. 170) 168 ‘But the absolute difference between God and man consists precisely in this, that man is a particular existing being…, while God is infinite and eternal.’ (ibid. p. 193) God, then, is not an existing being: he does not exist, that is to say. How, then, can he be anything (whether it is infinite or eternal, or what you will)? This is where K. goes off the rails. 169 ‘God does not exist, he is eternal.’ (ibid. p. 296) 170 If ‘Truth is’ is the truth, then ‘Truth is’ is; which proves it. 171 …Absolute Systems of Absolute Systems of Absolute Systems of… And it is only because every part is absolute that one might say that the whole is absolute. But we cannot, ultimately, speak of the whole; for ‘existence must be revoked in the eternal before the system can round itself out; there must be no existing remainder, not even such a little minikin as the existing Herr Professor who writes the system.’ (K.)


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172 ‘The right way up’ is the body pour-autrui. If I see that a tumbler, for example, is ‘the right way up’ (against a blank background and relative to my body), that is a quality of the tumbler; for my eye cannot tell which way up a tumbler is—the tumbler must tell my eye. And ‘to be the right way up’ is evidence of my body, objective evidence. 173 To say that a particle spins is to say that for a single eye, unattached to a body, things do not appear any way up, right or wrong. 174 When you see the straight edge of a table, and then run your finger along it, you may say that your touch confirms your vision. But the truth is, that you were already touching the edge with your eye. Would it appear straight to an eye unprovided with muscles? 175 Pure vision can only give coloured blocks (extension—and, strictly, not even spatial extension—and colour, but not direction31): all outline (or direction) comes of our faculty of moving the eye bodily. (Our tongue gives us only blocks of taste.) 176 Our body, perhaps, gives us only blocks of direction (thus, direction has no spatial extension). (That is, if we consider that hot and cold and the like are another sense.)


177 The body (muscular) will this do? The body (tactile) (The second to be further subdivided—temperature, pressure, ? etc.) Gravity, then, would be the intersection of the spin of the body (muscular) and that of the body (tactile-pressure). Gravity is the being ‘the right way up’, not merely relative to the body, but of the body. 178 In each sense there is non-spatial extension, if by space we understand direction [which is confined to the body (muscular)]. This extension is the ajjhattikåyatana, while the colour (for example) or the direction is bahiddhå. (Being the relation between two successive colours—i.e. the temporal aspect.) [Direction, then, is time-like!]

31.  And not even side by side—one taste is not beside another, though it has extension.


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179 Movement occurs when the object of one of two intersecting senses changes its transcendence independent of the other. In order that the object shall continue to be the same in both something has to give. Since the eye gets the directional orientation of its objects from the body it has no objection if the body changes it. A change in visual directional orientation (i.e. peripheral movement) is simply a unilateral bodily (muscular) change in orientation. 180 ‘What lies at the root of both the comic and the tragic is this connection, is the discrepancy, the contradiction, between the infinite and the finite, the eternal and that which becomes. A pathos which excludes the comic is therefore a misunderstanding, is not pathos at all. The subjective existing thinker is as bifrontal as existence itself. When viewed from a direction looking toward the Idea, the apprehension of the discrepancy is pathos; when viewed with the Idea behind one, the apprehension is comic.’— S. Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 82-83 181 Eternity (or saµsåra), when seen as the sum of individual things or experiences, each of which is impermanent, is comic; when seen as the unchanging or permanent structure of these things or experiences, it is pathetic. An exister is in existence, and he can (if he wishes) look at structure (the Dhamma) from the point of view of content (of dhammas) and the tragic will appear, and he can look at content from the point of view of structure (with the Dhamma behind him) and the comic will appear. There is no other point of view, nor is there anything else to see. In immediacy structure does not appear, that is to say that the tragic does not appear; and when the tragic does not appear neither does the comic. Only in sheer reflexion do they both appear, and then reciprocally. Suddhaµ dhammasamuppådaµ suddhaµ Saπkhårasantatiµ (Theragåthå, 716). The first is comic, the second pathetic. 182 ‘He who would only hope is cowardly, he who would only recollect is a voluptuary, but he who wills repetition is a man, and the more expressly he makes his purpose clear, the deeper he is as a man.’—S. Kier­ke­gaard, Repetition, p. 5. 183 ‘Repetition is reality and it is the seriousness of life. He who wills repetition is matured in seriousness.’ p. 6. (Repetition = uniformity of structure, i.e. saπkhårasantatim.)


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184 ‘The only possible way of drawing a distinction between thought and action is to relegate thought to the sphere of the possible, the disinterested, the objective, and to assign action to the sphere of the subjective. But along this boundary there appears a twilight zone. Thus when I think that I will do this or that, this thought is not yet an action, and in all eternity it is qualitatively distinct from action; nevertheless, it is a possibility in which the interest of action and of reality already reflects itself.’—S. Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 302. 185 ‘The real action is not the external act, but an internal decision in which the individual puts an end to the mere possibility and identifies himself with the content of his thought to exist in it.’ Ibid. 186 ‘The very maximum of what one human being can do for another, in relation to that wherein each man has to do solely with himself, is to inspire him with concern and unrest.’ Ibid., p. 346. 187 Humility is no more virtue than pride.


188 AB – AB Same/Different AB – BA Neither/Both AB – AB One/Two

Either/Or None/Some

189 (i) Nothing is what two things have in common that have nothing in common. (ii) The negative is the unification of opposites. (iii) Two things have nothing in common—otherwise, to the extent that they have something in common, they are one. (iv) Mediation is the passage via the negative from one opposite to the other. 190 ‘—Vecchi luoghi comuni filosofici … [‘Old philosophical commonplaces … (see L. 21 (15.i.63 (d)); L. 88 (25.iii.64))] … sua vittoria.’—Gli Ossessi, p. 201. 191 Something is related to Nothing by way of sixteen negatives, six of them negative. 192 For Hindus all religions are one; for Buddhists they are not. Herein they differ.


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193 I do this because there is nothing else to be done. 194 À moi c’est tellement égal.32 195

Pa†hav⁄ : Essence (and Existence) Pa†haviyå : Essesnce (less Existence)—Essence precedes Pa†havito : Existence (less Essence)—Existence precedes Pa†haviµ me : Existence (and Essence)

196 A and the relation between A and Å is perpendicular to A. Dissimilar things are not related: that is to say, they are similar things related by ‘not’—i.e. related (for relation and the negative are identical). Two dissimilar things intersect—they are not together [An intersection (not-A) regarded as a relation (Not-not-Not, where not-Not = A) brings forth a fresh not.] They are not separated by not. Å, therefore, is perpendicular to A. In Å, or not-A, not is not related to A, since they are different: not and A intersect. Not and A are dissimilar: they are therefore similar things related (by not). How? (Either A-not-A or) Not-not-Not. Not-not-Not = Not A and not A. A ⋅ A = AB (AÅ) ¯) ¯ (AÅ AB ⋅ AB = AB ¯) AB ⋅ AB = AB (AÅ B is perpendicular to A when it is not-A, Å; but B is not the relation between not and A, since there is no relation between them. Not and A together are not, they are the negative: thus B is the negative. It is not, however, the not of not-A, the not that A is not, but the not that Not is not—the not of not-Not. AB, therefore, is perpendicular to A, if AB is understood as the intersection of A and B, of A and not. But B is not-A: it is therefore similar to not-A; that is to say, related by a negative. Thus, as we had ¯ . This means A-not-A and Å-not-Å or B-not-B, now we have B¯-not-B ¯ ¯ to say that B or Å is the negative. AB, therefore, is perpendicular to A. ¯ ⊥ A. (AA = Å, because if A and A intersect we 197 AA ⊥ A; AÅ ⊥ A; AÅ have the original not or relation of two similar things.) 198 The Repetition of A is perpendicular to A. A comes first; Repetitions follows. 32.  [As for me, it is the same.]


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But for Repetition of A to be Perpendicular to A, A must be a direction: it must be double ( _____ ), a Repetition, identified as A. Repetition, thus, comes first; A follows. The Repetition of A is perpendicular to Repetition A. The condition for perpendicularity is therefore the dual precedence of A and of Repetition. Starting with both A and Repetition we start with a perpendicular. Starting with A we have A: starting with Repetition we have Å. AA → A ÅÅ → —— ↓ ↓ —— A Identity (A) and Repetition (Å) are absolutely different. In other words duality is given. The subject cannot be deduced from the object, nor vice versa.

199 Does one precede two? No: duality is what is given; therefore two precedes one. But only one thing, namely duality, is given; therefore one precedes two. What, then, is given—one or two? 200 Since, in practice, we cannot start with repetition, but only with a repeated thing (A) we allow A to precede always, but remain uncertain whether it is identity or repetition. The object is always an ex-subject. 201 ‘… every politically wise government knows—and this the lovers only discover afterwards—that man is reduced to insignificance by marriage …’—S. Kierkegaard, Attack, p. 215 202 The Repetition of A is perpendicular to A. In our experience A and its Repetition are given: the perpendicular is given. A and its Repetition consists of A in the first place and A in the second place. We need one, A, in the first place; and a second place, not; and one, A, in the second place, both A and not, Å. 203 C’est vieux jeu ça, la vie.33 204 Thus, for A and its Repetition Å we need three items, or things, one, not, and both. Since the perpendicular is given, we have one and both given dually—there is the first (one) and the second (both) in such a way that the less of the first the more of the second, exactly, so that 33.  [It’s an old game, this life.]


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there is always the third (both). One and not constitute both. It will be seen that as the transition from A to its Repetition takes place the third transfers its allegiance from the second to the first, so that from the point of view of the second, the first is the second. (This ignores a fourth item, precedence.) That is to say, the third always joins forces with the other; it is this union of one and both that constitutes other or not. Finally, if we consult the third, both, it tells us that it is simply the one thing that the other two have in common, that is, the third is simply one in distinction to the other two, which together are both: the third is one, not both—that is to say, from its point of view. Both and not constitute one. We thus have three items, one, not, both, each of which is one, not, and both: one is ‘one and not both’, not is ‘not one and both’, both is ‘both and not one’. These three things are mutually perpendicular—one perpendicular requires three. 205 A, Å, and AÅ, or one, not, and both are each given dually with the other pair. There is also, however, an order of precedence, since one must be given first and each fresh one must be perpendicular to all preceding ones. Obviously A is the absolute one that precedes; for it is not defined in terms of the others. Å follows, and AÅ is third. The order A → Å and (A → Å) → AÅ is irreversible.34 206 The Law of Entropy: any given closed system gets more and more boring. 207

The passage of time is the waning of interest. The passage of space is the transfer of interest. The passage of time is the transfer of the object. The passage of space is the waning of the object.

208 Nibbåna is not nothing, because ‘nothing’ is something. 209 You say that in seeking what benefits me I am being selfish? And that it is better for me to be unselfish? Better for me, did you say? How selfish, then, to seek to be unselfish! 210 Things that are absolute are members of a group; but a thing must be a group to be absolute.

34.  [This paragraph is crossed out.]


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211 It is said of a sage that when people asked him pressingly for counsel in important affairs he invariably replied, ‘But I myself am plunged even now into anxiety about an important transaction. At this very instant it may turn into frightful urgency’, and so saying he would turn a deaf ear and immerse himself in meditation. And even then he only attained to heavenly rebirth. 212 An electron behaves like anything else. 213 Everything is repetition; everything is repeated. That is existence. 214 An operation is repetition of an operation. 215 ‘This is a dialectical qualification which must be kept sharply in mind— only when the object exists does the desire exist, only when the desire exists does the object exist; desire and its object are twins, neither of which is born a fraction of an instant before the other. But though they are thus born at exactly the same instant, and with no time interval between, as is the case with other twins, the importance of their thus coming into existence is not that they are united, but, on the contrary, that they are separated.’—S. Kierkegaard, Either/Or, O.U.P. London 1944, p. 64. 216 Time tends to accelerate; eternity repeatedly comes to an end. This is an hierarchical secret. 217 Repetition of an operation is integration of this operation with respect to itself. (∫x dx = 1/2 x2)35 The repetition of x is what has x as its rate of change. 218 Number, by definition, is quantity, and quantity presents itself immediately as intensity (or degree of emphasis or weight). More strictly, there is the one-to-one correspondence between number and quantity. (This, incidentally, puts paid to the Q.T.) Always, an absolute quantity, of value unity, is required; and this is always given—it is simply the quantity of the present object. If two objects are present, the total quantity is unity: that is to say, the sum of their respective quantities is unity—this defines addition. Their difference is the degree of sub35.  [This sentence c/o and r/b: No—the square.]


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jectivity. This defines subtraction. When both objects equal one half, the hitherto greater one vanishes—for the objects are X and X2, one and both. 219 Time varies as intensity of feeling. At any level, therefore, time is absolute, for intensity (or quantity) of feeling (regardless of whether pleasant, painful, or neutral) is necessarily unity. 220 At each repetition of an operation, the intensity of feeling is diminished by one half (from Kummer X becomes X2); and at each repetition of an operation the degree of objectification is increased. The subject, however, requires that the intensity of feeling be maintained; for ‘self’ (or time, on the next higher level) is absolute. In consequence, time is obliged to accelerate. The square of X, as it occurs naturally, has half the intensity of X; that is to say, the square of X occurs naturally in the integral of X, 1/2 X2. The square of X is not the repetition of X, since the operation X is not naturally the operation of squaring X1/2, but of integrating (2X)1/2 with respect to (2X)1/2. ( ∫ (2X)1/2 d(2X)1/2 = 1/2 [(2X)1/2]2 = X ) 221 In Kummer, X has 16 different squares: the integral of X, therefore, can take any one of sixteen different forms. 222 An index of dispersion is needed, > 0 and < 1, and decreasing in value by repeated squaring. This will correspond to the degree of subjectivity. At the critical point its value will be zero. At each successive starting point (after a critical point) its value will be the square of its value at the immediately preceding starting point. Thus, at successive starting points there will be a more general decline in the degree of subjectivity. When this more general value reaches zero (in the limit, with the acceleration of time) a critical point on a more general level is reached. u.s.w.36 223 ‘Place no. 1 drops out, and no. 2 becomes the first place.’—K. Plus ca change et plus c’est la même chose. ‘… la terrible amertume de ceux qui ont eu raison.’—C.37 36.  [u.s.w. = und so weiter = and so forth.] 37. [The more the change the more the same thing.] [The terrible bitterness of those who had it right.]


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224 A thing’s existence is its integral with respect to itself. 225 If a scientist has before him two nervous systems and he wants to make a strictly objective description of them (as he is bound to do as a scientist), the two descriptions will be, except for accidentals, indistinguishable. To make his descriptions he will use whatever instruments (microscope, electroencephalograph, clock, ruler) are necessary, and his descriptions will be in terms of pointer readings on these instruments. These readings can be checked by another scientist, thus ensuring that the descriptions are truly objective. The scientist’s function is limited to setting up the apparatus, noting the readings, and arranging the results to form a coherent picture. Now it may happen that whenever an identical stimulus is applied in turn to the two nervous systems (say A and B) the scientist notices a pain as the stimulus is applied to A, but not as it is applied to B. Since, however, the pointer readings on the instruments are essentially the same as the stimulus is applied to A as it is applied to B, the scientist cannot admit the pain as distinguishing stimulus of A from stimulus of B; for he is limited to the data provided by his instruments. He is bound to conclude that ‘pain’ does not enter into the scientific description of nervous systems. For example, there is no way of telling whether the pain was ‘caused’ by stimulus of A or by the scientist’s leaning on a drawing pin every time he stimulated A but not when he stimulated B. It might be, however, that he would wish to account for the occurence of pain together with stimulus of A and its non-occurence together with stimulus of B. He cannot (as noted above) say that pain distinguishes stimulus of A from stimulus of B, but he might perhaps say, ‘A is my nervous system; B is somebody else’s nervous system’; therefore stimulus of A causes pain in me, and stimulus of B causes pain in somebody else; there is pain in both cases, which is why the pointer readings are the same.’ But how does the scientist know that A is his nervous system and B not, seeing that the instruments make no distinction? If another scientist is collaborating with the first, both will observe the same pointer readings, as noted above. But this second scientist may come to the conclusion, ‘B is my nervous system, A is somebody else’s.’ Which is the objective scientific truth—’A is my nervous system’ or ‘B is my nervous system’?


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226 —Why do you punish? —I am a Judge, and it is a Judge’s duty to punish. —It is a Judge’s duty to punish, true; but is it your duty to be a Judge? 227 If anything is, everything else is. 228 The eye is exactly as large as what it sees. 229 Both theist and atheist accept the laws of common sense, now known as the laws of science, as certainly true, as not admitting of exceptions. The theist, however, admits that exceptions to these laws do occur, and he calls these exceptions ‘God’. God, thus, both does not exist, since exceptions to these laws cannot occur, and does exist, since exceptions to these laws do in fact occur. God is a logical contradiction. The atheist, on the other hand, will not admit that such exceptions occur, and asserts that God does not exist, that there is no God. It might be thought that he has resolved this logical contradiction by his denial of the attribute of existence to God. But no. Since, in fact, exceptions to these laws of common sense or science do occur, the atheist is in effect saying, ‘These laws do not admit of exceptions; but exceptions to them do occur, and this is God; but these exceptions that do occur do not occur, and God, who both does not exist and does exist, does not exist.’ The atheist, thus, accepts the theist’s God before denying him, and is even more deeply in contradiction than the theist. 230 The laws of common sense, however, are no more than probably true: the laws of science are laws of statistical probability, obtained by induction. That exceptions to them should occur is nothing wonderful, and far less an occasion for inventing God. 231 Matter/things are as they seem; good; but what if they fail to seem? When something seems in some degree permanent, then in fact it is failing to be wholly seen. A permanent thing, being without termination, would not be determinate, it would not be a thing. Nothing can seem wholly permanent, and, wholly to seem, a thing must seem wholly impermanent, that is, wholly determined to termination. 232 Q. When is a thing not a thing? A. When it is mine.


‘Marginalia’ uses the following scheme: page and line number of the book in which comments were found is followed, in square brackets, by the text commented upon. Following the closing square bracket is editorial description, if any: u/l = underlined, c/o = crossed out, r/b = replaced by, noted = a passage marked by a vertical line in the outside margin; this seems to mean ‘approved of, significant, noteworthy’, whereas passages indicated by a ‘wavy line’ seem to be indicated as ‘not straight thinking’, ‘almost certainly wrong’, etc. Following editorial description is a colon, after which is Ven. Ñå~av⁄ra’s comment, if any. Which books were commented upon ‘earlier’ and which ‘later’ (i.e. after 1959) is not always clear. (The editors assume that marginal notes which were inserted in the books before 1960 are of the following authors: Camus, Dirac, Lavelle, Ogden, Richards, Sartre, and Stebbing; and post-1960 notes appear in: Balfour, Blackham, Bradley, Heidegger, Murti, Ñå~amoli Thera, Nyanaponika Thera, Rhys, Russell, Tyrrell, Warner, and Wettimuny.) Ven. Ñå~av⁄ra read all French books in the original; herein translations are offered, together with the original texts in cases where those texts would not be readily available. For where (in the case of the Camus and de Beauvoir) published translations are available, page/line references are to the original texts and the translations offered herein are by the editors, inasmuch as the translations were not available.



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Bachelard, Gaston, La Terre et les Rêveries de la Volonté, Librairie José Corti, Paris, 1948 [En réalité, le soleil couchant est une image de nirvâna, …]1 u/l: Note that atthaµ gacchati is used both of the setting of the sun and for the extinction (nibbåna) of the arahat. [C’est donc à juste titre que les pratiques de nirvâna demandent qu’on vide peu à peu l’esprit de ses images.]2: This is true of samatha practice. [Au contraire l’antinirvâna, la philosophie du réveil, …]3 u/l: Réveil, ‘awakening’, is ambivalent. Certainly nibbåna is kammanirodha, ‘cessation of action’, but it is also bodhi, which is precisely ‘awakening’. J. Evola’s book on the teaching of nibbåna is called La Dottrina del Risveglio. [L’annulaire est aussi le doigt médical, celui qui est le plus convenable pour mêler les mixtures …]4 u/l: This is so today in Ayurvedic medicine.

Bachelard Gaston, La Terre et les Rêveries du Repos, Librairie José Corti, Paris, 1948 p. 121/35-122/2 [Je dis : ma Mère. Et c’est à vous que je pense, ô Maison!

Maison des beaux étés obscurs de mon enfance. (Mélancolie.)

1.  ‘In reality, the sunset is an image of nirvâna, …’ 2.  ‘So it is justified that the practices of nirvana demand that one should empty the mind gradually of its images.’ 3.  ‘In contrast the anti-nirvana, the philosophy of awakening, …’ 4.  ‘The ring-finger is also the medical finger, the one that is most convenient for mixing mixtures.’


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p. 61

Mère et Maison, voilà les deux archétypes dans le même vers.]5: Kintåham ku†ikaµ br¨mi,/Måtaran ku†ikaµ br¨si (S.I,8)6 [… le principe de la petite fenètre que nous avons énoncé à propos de la lucarne du grenier : voir sans être vu, … Charles Baudouin (Victor Hugo, p. 158) signale chez Victor Hugo la fréquence de la rime fenêtre-naître. Et Baudouin signale ce rapprochement dans le chapitre où il prouve que le désir de curiosité est le désir de connaître le secret de la procréation.]7: A womb with a view. [Toujours les labyrinthes ont un léger mouvement qui prépare une nausée, un vertige, un malaise pour le rêveur labyrinthé.]8: The wall in the ‘purgatorio’. [… Lévis envisage l’action salutaire d’un fantôme-choc, comme si une petite peur, une peur insidieuse, rivée dans l’inconscient, pouvait être guérie par une peur plus claire!]9: Excellent comment! Balfour, Gerald William, A Study of the Psychological Aspects of Mrs Willett’s Mediumship, and of the Statements of the Communicators Concerning Process, Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research, Volume 43, part 140, London, 1935 : Myers died in 1901, Gurney in 1888, Sidgwick in 1900, Butcher in 1910, Verrall in 1912. Axel Munthe gives an account of Myer’s death (in Rome) in his Story of San Michele.

5. ‘I say “My Mother”, and it is of you that I think, O house! The house of the obscure and beautiful summers of my childhood. (Melancholy) Mother and House, these are the two archetypes in the same verse.’ 6.  ‘Of what do I say “hut”? / Of Mother do you say “hut”.’ 7.  ‘… the principle of the small window that we have formulated about the skylight in the loft: to see without being seen, … Charles Baudouin (Victor Hugo, p. 158) points out in Victor Hugo the frequency of the rhyme fenêtre-naître [window-to be born]. And Baudouin points out this parallel in the chapter where he proves that desire of curiosity is desire to know the secret of procreation.’ 8.  ‘Always labyrinthes have a slight movement which prepares a nausea, a dizziness, an uneasiness for the labyrinthed dreamer.’ 9.  ‘… Lévi conceives the salutary action of a shock-phantom, as if a little fear, an insidious fear, riveted into the unconscious could be cured by a clearer one!’



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[But there is evidently a tendency to develop a higher degree in the scale by the addition of what I have called a psycho-sensory element.] ‘psycho-sensory element’ u/l: The ‘words coming from outside’ are already a psychosensory element. (It is a mistake to confine mental imagery to visual images.) [… a veridical apparition is the hallucinatory shape in which a telepathic impulse from the mind of a distant person is embodied for the percipient. As such it is subjective. All that is veridical in it is packed into the telepathic impulse in the form of a “nucleus of a transferred impression”.]: This is hardly adequate. See p. 197. Claivoyance must be taken into account. [Concerning the nature of the ‘telepathic impulse’ and the ‘nucleus of a transferred impression’ he is studiously indefinite.]: ! [It’s the name of a Field Marshal I’m trying to get, a German name.]: Perhaps ‘Blücher’, which is the name of one of the Dormitories at Wellington, Marshal B. having been one of the Duke of W’s generals. [One does not sniff an idea.]: Why not? An idea (i.e. an image) can make one retch physically. [… thought without words or mental imagery] u/l: see note on p. 115. [Heavy with script all day] u/l: A pregnant phrase! [Eleanor Mildred Sidgwick]: Mrs Sidgwick was the sister of G.W. Balfour. [Thought is possible not only without the assistance of verbal or other conventional symbolism, but without even that of mental imagery.] last 7 words u/l: This is a mistaken view. See J.-P. Sartre, L’Être et le Néant, p. 601: … pure psychological idols, such as … thought without images and without words.’ Note, however, that the images need not be visual. [Flashes of meaning may reach the automatist unclothed in symbols of any kind.]: A ‘flash of meaning’ without any formal substance is a complete incomprehensibility. ‘Meaning’ (or ‘significance’) is the relation between the formal substances (i.e. two phenomena), one present and the other absent. The latter is the ‘meaning’ of the former.


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[It is capable of improvement by practice, and likely, in the opinion at least of the communicators, to become more widespread and more developed as time goes on.] ‘and likely … goes on’ u/l: On what grounds? [But I see no reason to suppose that the difficulty of catching a sound-image telepathically conveyed differs in any essential respect from the difficulty of catching a sound heard in the course of ordinary speech or dictation.] noted and checked. [Had the communicator himself failed to find the appropriate word, and had he transmitted his thought by means of a periphrasis, leaving it to the automatist to fill in the blank? Or had he used the correct word but failed to impress it on the mental hearing of the automatist?]: Or as a visual image? : The tangle of speculations in this chapter arises directly from attavåd’upådåna (‘holding a belief in “self”’). There is more of this later. [She called the house Henry Sidgwick’s house, and on my saying it was Mrs. Sidgwick’s house, insisted that it was his, not hers, that his books were there and that he frequently came and looked at them.]: I have read of this same sort of thing elsewhere. [He believed it would be many ages before humanity reached anything like a basis of certainty, and in the meantime vast assumptions must be made. But he did not like making assumptions, and often objected to the assumptions made by Myers.] ‘and in the meantime … Myers.’ double noted. [The argument would still hold good even if we choose to regard the communicators as so many additional me’s masquerading as spirits.]: This ignores the fundamental distinction between me and somebody else (not me). Myers is better. [The subject is one that calls for further examination.] u/l: Indeed it does! What is meant by a ‘true self’? [An external communicator impressing his message on the normal self should be at least as effective in creating a sense of alien origin as a secondary self communicating with a primary self.] ‘creating’ u/l: No need to create it—you can’t avoid it.


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[If genius consists, as Myers holds, in the interaction of subliminal with supraliminal mentation, we must recognize that in the majority of cases that interaction goes on subconsciously so far as the normal self is concerned. The thoughts resulting from it in the conscious mind will then appear to that mind to be its own thoughts, not thoughts impressed on it from elsewhere.]: What is the distinction between ‘subliminal’ and ‘subconscious’ (and between ‘supraliminal’ and ‘conscious’)? This seems to be particularly confused thinking. See p. 202. [Say this the Ideal is the Real. What men call Visionary is the Bare fact. What they call fact is often evanescent vapour which will melt into nothingness before the light of truth. I yearn to say the bare bones are the unreal. The Magic Vision Holy Grail is the Actual. I am feeling after much that is yet obscure to me. My knowledge is fragmentary and as I progress I feel its limits more.]: Mystical speculations—quite on the wrong track. [there is a terrible competition] u/l: Queue outside the telephone booth. [the communicators do not admit the passage of thought from subliminal to supraliminal to be telepathic…]: Of course not—there is no telepathy within the same being. The whole idea of communication between one part of the ‘self’ (as Balfour calls it) and another is wholly misleading—see note 1 on next page. One does not communicate with oneself. What is required is the notion of a single but complex structure. See p. 184 and pp. 263ff. [even in deep trance Mrs. Willett retains a consciousness of self, whereas Mrs. Piper loses all sense of her own personality.] ‘whereas … Personality’ u/l: A bad way of expressing it. What is presumably meant is that Mrs. Piper is almost completely displaced and her body is occupied (or possessed) by someone else. [The extraneous spirit acts on a man’s organism in every much the same way as the man’s own spirit habitually acts upon it.]: Yes. [Possession of the organism by a dissociated fragment of the medium’s personality is abundantly recognised by Myers.]: There is something of a contradiction in the notion


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p. 174/1-3 p. 174/10-12 p. 179/17-21 p. 181/fn.1 p. 181/fn.3

p. 184/5-9 p. 184/14-17


that one’s body can be possessed by (part of) oneself. Myers seems to be aware of this, and makes a distinction. To be ‘self-possessed’ is to be reflexively in control of the body: but this is not what is referred to here. [If the Dorr incident was really a case of ‘possession’, it was a case of possession shared between the invading spirit and the spirit of the medium.]: Perfectly possible. [There was no question there of either ‘mind’ being other than a dissociated element of the sensitive’s own personality.]: Are you quite sure? [The vividness of her sensation then was compounded of not only the initial stimulus but of the answering one that sprang from me…]: Resonance. [Hélène Smith] u/l: What a name! [I draw no distinction, so far as process is concerned, between possession by a dissociated self and a possession by an extraneous spirit.] u/l: See note on p. 150. [the Weltgeist, or Absolute Spirit] ‘Absolute’ c/o: World. [May it not be that the attainment of self-consciousness by a finite spirit A requires not only A’s consciousness of B’s reality, but also B’s recognition of A’s reality, and similar with B?]: Curious idea of an attainment! The notion is only partly valid. Recognition by others is, in a manner of speaking, a dimension of our being; but even without this the Cartesian Cogito ergo sum is valid. See Sartre in L’Être et le Néant on the question of other people. The Weltgeist is a mystical notion. [… possession … must certainly include some kind of ascendency or domination of the possessing mind over the possessed.]: Presumably so. [normal mentality in the individual may involve an element of telepathic possession by the primary self of the other psychical units in the group that enter into the constitution of the personality as a whole.]: Once again, telepathy is an inappropriate word to describe a being’s internal relation with himself. Telepathy implies distance—i.e. the separation of one being from another, which is an absolute negative (‘I am not someone else’ and vice versa). There is not such a negative within the being, since, whatever part may be in the ascendant, all parts are equally ‘I’. See p. 256, p. 279 and p. 308.


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[whether such a faculty is really found in man.] u/l. N.B. The faculty is that of clairvoyance. : It is; but it is accepted much less easily than telepathy. [I further propose to retain the word clairvoyance … to cover both the ‘independent clairvoyance’ … and the ‘telepathic clairvoyance’ which that definition if carried to its logical conclusion would exclude.] last 15 words u/l: Inclusion of this in clairvoyance seems to add to, not subtract from, the confusion. See p. 205. [Oh he says, Who applies the stimulus under which certain ideas—use that word, not what I wanted.]: See p. 198. [telaesthesia (M) may be described as immediate knowledge, supernormally acquired, of facts relating to the world of physical reality.] and, on the next page, [telaesthesia (W) … clearly cannot be … direct perception of facts relating to external reality.]: Does ‘physical’ equal ‘external’? [… an oft-recurring dream in which she seemed to herself to visit a certain house … When, at a later time, she actually visited the real house … it was found that in many respects the dream house corresponded much more closely with the internal arrangements of the house as it was fifty or sixty years ago than with contemporary fact …]: I have read somewhere another account of what appear to be the same episodes. It seems that Mrs. W. (if it was she) had a shock when she actually drove up to the house of her dreams and recognized it. But the owner of the house had a greater shock when she recognised Mrs. W. and exclaimed, ‘You’re the person who has been haunting this house for so long!’ It seems that the occupants saw Mrs. W. on her wanderings through the house though Mrs. W. said that in her wanderings she never saw anybody. Balfour’s views of the matter—that it was telepathy (W) or telaesthesia (W)— is clearly inadequate. Reference to the note on pp. 204-5 show that Balfour has certain prejudices in the matter. It is odd that he makes no reference to the fact (if I am not mistaken) that Mrs. W. was seen haunting the house. [both these topics are spoken of as ideas.] and, after ‘ideas’ on line 28: Note that on p. 194 the communicator says ‘… ideas—use that word, not what I wanted—…’


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[Whatever the ground or justification may be for treating the telepathically impressed Pegasus as an idea, and the telaesthetically acquired Steeds of Dawn as an object…]: Both are images. [the world of external reality.]: External to what? [Potential naturally transcends actual, and it is not at the actual that the limit lies.] noted and checked. [Potential means possible to be apprehended of mind as it exists in the parts—potential to the parts—using the word parts in contradistinction to the word whole—Oh he says, the parts can’t be conscious of the whole, but the whole can be conscious of itself as a whole, and also as a whole of parts.]: Cf. Sartre’s ‘totalité détotalisée in L’Être et le Néant, p. 242. [Unconscious is not an equivalent for potential. No.] checked. [her conscious and unconscious self are identified with her supraliminal and subliminal self.]: See p. 157. [using the term subliminal here to denote what is highest and best in the human mind.] u/l: But ‘subliminal’ is ‘unconscious’ (see above), and, for Freud at least, the ‘unconscious’ is not unlike a cesspool. See p. 273. [the distinction between potential and actual content is to be understood as applying to minds in general, whether incarnate or discarnate]: Yes. [by ‘potential content’ is meant the store of past impressions which have become and remain latent unless called up into present consciousness and made actual by an exercise of memory.] ‘the store of past impressions’ u/l: This is too restricted—also too naive—e.g. a potential precognition is not a past impression. An exercise of attention is better. [I find it hard to believe that retro-cognitive telaesthesia could ever be independent of the memories of some mind or other.] u/l: Why? This seems to take the phenomenon of memory as something already clearly understood. [An idealistic theory of the universe may resolve matter into the content of some cosmic mind.]: This, of course, won’t do. [But as long as we treat the distinction between matter and mind as fundamental] u/l: See NoD, nåma (b) or (c).


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[The idealistic hypothesis would … do away with the conception of independent clairvoyance altogether, and leave telaesthesia (W) alone in possession of the field.]: This is not the only solution. [A vague but genuine consciousness of the spiritual environment; that (it seems) is the degree of revelation which artistic or philosophic genius is capable of conferring. Subliminal uprushes … tend to become telaesthetic. … indefinite intimations of … the great truth that the human spirit is essentially capable of a deeper than sensorial perception … outside the range of any specialized organ or any planetary view … that world … which the seer or the sensitive projects a narrower but exacter gaze …]: All this has a mystical flavouring. Handle with care. [… one mind may be able to perceive and apprehend the contents, actual and potential, of another mind without that other’s active intervention …]: This faculty can be developed by practice. It is more generally accepted as a fact by Orientals than the reverse (i.e. telepathic communication). [If complete oneness were ever actually achieved] u/l: Impossible supposition! [Tennyson]: Alfred Lawn Tennyson gentlemanpoet, as Joyce calls him. [We need not deny the transcendental ecstasy to any of the strong souls who have claimed to feel it;—to Elijah or to Isaiah, … to Buddha or to Mahomet, … to Wordsworth or to Tennyson.]: To speak of the Buddha as a ‘soul’—even as a ‘strong soul’—is a particularly unfortunate blunder. And it does not improve matters to put him in the same company as Mahomet and Tennyson. [To relive and to realize through the experience of the living that is what the dead do … To be satisfied through another’s filling solidarity say that No man liveth unto himself]: Parasites! I read of an account of a prostitute who, having died and being reborn in some low spirit world, spent her time seeking vicarious satisfaction of her lust by possessing (in the sense used in this book) the bodies of human beings engaged in sexual intercourse. ‘To be satisfied through another’s filling solidarity’ seems to fit the case very nicely.


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Not all the dead keep their mind above their waist like these respectable Victorian gentlemen. ‘No man liveth unto himself’ u/l: On the contrary, every man liveth unto himself. To judge by these extracts, the dead do not seem to have progressed very much in wisdom. All this is wallowing in bhavata~hå, craving for existence. It is in the opposite direction that we have to go to reach emancipation. [… To them we may become faint memories … it is our unguessed influence that touches them when they do not suspect it …]: This is all very well, but there are times when I should prefer to be alone. Probably, however, we are never alone. [The soul’s true native element] u/l: The soul’s true native element is avijjådhåtu. [So far as the Willett records are concerned, activity of communication is almost entirely on the side of the discarnate.]: The question might seem to arise how the sitter communicates with the communicator. But I do not find the question raised in this book. Possibly there is direct communication; but only one way, i.e. incarnate to discarnate. See top of p. 217. This arrangement might seem to have certain advantages for us—the dead can’t answer back. Unrestricted communication with our dear departed ones might not be an altogether unmixed blessing. Besides, it is here that the Buddhas appear, not there. [… a region of speculative mysticism into which I will not attempt to penetrate further.]: I should hope not! One of Balfour’s merits is the sobriety of his discussion. [by some direct supernormal percipience without the intervention of any other mind to which the facts are already known, may there not be also a tetro-cognitive telaesthesia by which we may attain a direct knowledge of facts in the past?] noted and checked. [It may even be that some World Soul is perennially conscious of all its past, and that individual souls, as they enter into deeper consciousness, enter into something which is at once reminiscence and actuality.] ‘perennially conscious of all its past’ u/l: This is a contradiction in terms. This idea of a World Soul is quite redundant. If the whole of the


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past, present and future is potentially accessible to each individual, what need of a World Soul? (See NoD, r¨pa and FS II/10.) [… the inmost sanctuary of mysticism … the most holy place …]: The Christian idea that heaven is a holy place (no doubt because God is supposed to live there). [… the horns of a duality … a conception of the selves as separated in such a way as to amount to 2 entities. But I was not to be impaled.]: Right. But see pp. 308-9. : J.-P. Sartre’s chapter (in L’Être et le Néant) on mauvaise foi, which adversely criticizes Freud’s doctrine of the ‘unconscious’, can be profitably studied in connexion with the distinction between the ‘Supraliminal’ and the ‘Subliminal’. [to be unconscious of each other’s action, or even to engage in a conflict of wills and in acts of mutual hostility.]: If they are unconscious of each other’s action, how can they engage in a conflict of wills and acts of mutual hostility? [it is evidently essential to come to a clear understanding of what we mean by a ‘self’] u/l: See NoD, attå and sakkåya. All the muddle of this chapter comes of the puthujjana’s failure to distinguish personality from individuality. Personality as ‘self’ is indivisible. Individuality is as divisible as you please; that is, within the individual. The word individual does not exclude internal divisions; it simply means that you cannot treat these internal divisions as a collection of individuals. ‘Individual’ is opposed to ‘class’. [no less a thinker than William James] u/l: W. J.’s thinking was never very profound. [It seems … that our moral nature is as easily split up as our intellectual nature, and that we cannot be any more certain that the minor current of personality which is diverted into some new channel will retain moral than that it will retain intellectual coherence.] noted. [My own instinctive conviction is that my true self is the ‘me as I know myself’.] u/l: Within limits, this is well said. The rationalist pays no attention to this instinctive conviction, and in consequence makes things too simple. This ‘instinctive conviction’ is asmimåna, based on avijjå. It is the kernel of the problem. But Balfour’s solution of the problem is hopelessly mistaken.


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p. 275/fn.1

[Otherwise it would not be the ‘I as I know myself’ that survives, but another personality altogether.] last 3 words u/l: i.e. ‘someone else as he knows himself’? p. 276/33-34 [supernormal powers are the exclusive prerogative of the subliminal.] u/l: This, of course, is completely disproved by the possibility of developing voluntary iddhi powers. p. 280/21-282/9 [In order to avoid the use of clumsy periphrases let us describe communication which passes from one mental element within the personality to another by the term interior, and communication which passes supernormally from one individual to another by the term exterior. ‘Exterior’ communication by common consent we describe as telepathic. Is ‘interior’ communication also telepathic, and if not, what is the nature of the process by which it takes place? Interior telepathy, if accepted as a fact, would, of course, be in flat contradiction to the doctrine that telepathic faculty is confined to the subliminal. But its implications do not end there. Telepathy is so clearly identified in Human Personality with the process of communication between distinct psychical entities that to accept the idea of interior telepathy would be in effect equivalent to recognizing the mental elements associated together in the individual man as being such distinct psychical entities. We are thus once more brought up before the old question concerning the selfhood of the independent currents of consciousness that are somehow combined in one and the same individual human being. Are these independent currents true selves, or are they phases, fragments, layers, strata, of one and the same unitary self? Interior telepathy interpreted as a process of communication between distinct psychical entities or true selves … is incompatible with the conception of the mental elements themselves as merely different manifestations or aspects of the soul’s activity. It is equally incompatible, I think, with the doctrine that identifies man’s true self with his subliminal self. … If I am asked whether, in my view, interior communication is always telepathic, my answer must be, Yes, if the selves between whom communication takes place are true selves. But at this point the controversy once more resolves



itself into the original difference of opinion concerning the nature of the mental elements between which the interaction takes place. Those who hold the mental elements to be true selves will inevitably take the further step and treat communication between them as telepathic. Those who hold them to be phases, strata, or ‘states’ of a single unitary self will naturally and rightly seek for some other term to describe the passage of thought from one to the other …]: Within Balfour’s presuppositions—i.e. within the sphere of the puthujjana—all this argument is perfectly valid. p. 297/3-7 : The ‘Absolute’ is simply a euphemism for ‘God’. p. 306/12-16 [… Myers … accepted the paradox as a true description of the nature of the soul. The soul is at once a unitary self, or ego, and a self distinguishable into parts sufficiently independent of each other to deserve on their own account to be described as ‘selves’.]: See p. 311. p. 308/11-12 [In a sense individual human beings are parts of one whole— that is, they are all rooted, as it were, in the absolute.] u/l: BOSH! p. 308/21-309/2 [No doubt it is to this incident that Gurney is referring when … he charges me with having tried to get him ‘on the horns of a duality which would almost amount to a conception of the selves as separated in such a way as to amount to 2 entities’. Yet even now it is clear that he has not fully grasped the nature of the dilemma as it presents itself to me. If supraliminal and subliminal are to be regarded as aspects of a unitary self, I should have nothing to say in deprecation of his contemptuous outburst. That aspects of a self cannot be selves on their own account is, in fact, one of the very points for which I have been contending throughout the present chapter. If they are aspects of self they cannot be separate selves. If they are not separate selves how can they be used in satisfactory explanation of those phenomena of abnormal psychology for the understanding of which separate selves seem to be imperatively demanded—such, for instance, as secondary personalities of the Sally Beauchamp type, or those ‘nunciative automatisms’ which Myers himself admits to be indistinguishable in form and circumstance from telepathic messages accepted by him as proceeding from independent entities whether spirits of the dead or


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p. 311/34-35

p. 312/20-23


other human beings?]: For all this see NoD, paramattha sacca para a5. From a puthujjana’s point of view, Balfour’s objections are valid—‘self’ cannot be divided into separate ‘selves’, and yet the Sally Beauchamp case requires it. The same dilemma occurs in the puthujjana’s reflexion—see a note on pa†iccasamuppåda para 24. This paradox cannot be resolved in the sphere of the puthujjana. If Gurney is right, that is only because he has, in fact, failed to appreciate Balfour’s dilemma. Gurney is right for the wrong reason; Balfour is wrong for the right reason: neither is right for the right reason. [… when some one, hesitating what course of action he shall adopt, says, ‘I was in two minds about it’ … nobody would seriously suggest that an interaction between two distinct selves is involved. The duality is in the thought, not in the thinker …]: This won’t do. Who or what is the thinker? [Among these other selves it occupies a position of primacy, and in normal conditions is in supreme control of the organism.]: This is quite mistaken. Each individual (which for Balfour is a ‘self’) is a totality, and there cannot be primacy amongst totalities. Balfour has simply re-introduced in another form the problem (the ‘paradox’ of p. 306) he is attempting to solve. [but unless the modification appears to the primary self to be impressed upon it from without by something other than itself, its thoughts will be for it its own thoughts, and will carry with them no objective significance.]: All thoughts have objective significance, i.e. the expression ‘its own thoughts’ in this context is meaningless. More exactly, all thoughts are objective and all thoughts are ‘mine’, and it is not legitimate to divide thoughts into those that are objective and those that are mine. The notion of subjectivity (i.e. reflexively) created thoughts is a pure invention. All that reflexion can do is to bring potential (or latent) thoughts (i.e. images) into actuality. How can a thought be created ex nihilo? But this does not mean that all images are recovered memories of reality. Imaginary things exist in their own right, no less than real things, and both are objective.


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p. 317/1-2

p. 317/6-7 p. 317/10 p. 317/13-16

p. 10/22-25

[… I cannot say that it amounts to proof]: But the question to be asked is what is meant by the word proof. These things can never be shown to be logically necessary, since they are prior to logic. A proof is what satisfies a given individual, and this will vary from one ‘individual’ to another. There can be no general proof. [What is real is what lies at the back of objective phenomena.] u/l: BOSH. There is nothing at the back of objective phenomena. There is no ‘Reality behind Appearance’. Objective phenomena are all the reality there is. Things are as they appear. Even a mirage is as it appears, namely, as a mirage. This does not mean that objective phenomena are without significance, but that the significances are also objective phenomena. [Are things symptomatic of an abiding and total sum of truth]: No. [or do things contribute and form and create the only reality]: Yes. [ACTION and TRUTH which is dependent which is primary and which well say the word derivative. You have travelled far and now you must go back.]: Action is primary. On the other hand, one can speak of a FALSEHOOD (avijjå) that is primary to ACTION. (Action, kamma, depends upon Being, bhava; but Being depends on Falsehood, avijjå, not on Truth, vijjå. And this Truth of Action is the only Truth there is; and recognition of it brings Action to an end. Action, therefore, depends on the Falsehood that is non-recognition of this Truth of Action. That is to say, Truth depends on the Action that ends Action, namely recognition of the Truth.) Beauvoir, Simone de, Pour une morale de l’ambiguité, Paris: Gallimard, 1947 [translated as The Ethics of Ambiguity by B. Frechtmann, New York, Philosophical Library, 1948] [… ; ou encore ils ont nié la vie, la considérant comme un voile d’illusion sous lequel se cache la vérité du Nirvâna.]10: Mahåyåna.

10.  ‘Or they denied life, considering it like a veil of illusion under which is hidden the truth of Nirvåna.’


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p. 15/21-24

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p. 21/5-8

[La conscience morale ne peut subsister, nous dit Hegel dans la dernière partie de la Phénoménologie de l’Esprit, que dans la mesure où il y a désaccord entre la nature et la moralité; elle disparaîtrait si la loi de la morale devenait la loi de la nature. Si bien que par un « déplacement » paradoxal, si l’action morale est le but absolu, le but absolu est aussi que l’action morale ne soit pas présente.]11 last sentence noted: Correct. [C’est dire d’abord que sa passion ne lui est pas infligée du dehors ; il la choisit, elle est son être même et comme telle elle n’implique pas l’idée de malheur.]12: ‘La réalité humaine est souffrante dans son être … Elle est donc par nature conscience malheureuse, sans dépassement possible de l’état de malheur.’ 13 L’Être et le Néant, p. 134. Can’t you read, my good woman? [Et, en fait, Sartre nous dit que l’homme se fait manque d’être afin qu’il y ait de l’être ; le terme « afin que » indique clairement une intentionalité …]14: If there is malheur (p. 15) how can there be intentionality? [… ; puisq’elle est, du dehors, injustifiable, ce n’est pas condamner l’existence que de la déclarer, du dehors, in­ justifiée.]15: If not, then why try to justify it? The point is that the word ‘unjustified’ would never be used at all if my existence were not essentially suffering. But Simone de Beauvoir denies this (on p. 15) in direct contradiction to Sartre. Sartre is right (though for the wrong reason), and S. de B., in rejecting this, is wrong for the right reason. But if she rejects it, this book is pointless.

11.  ‘Hegel tells us in the last part of the phenomenology of the mind that moral consciousness may persist only insofar as there is disagreement between nature and morality. It would disappear if the law of morality became the law of nature. Thus, by a paradoxical “shifting”, if moral action is the absolute aim, the absolute aim is also that moral action be not present.’ 12.  ‘His passion is not inflicted on him from the outside. He chooses it. It is its very being and as such no longer implies the idea of unhappiness.’ 13.  ‘The being of human reality is suffering … . Human reality therefore is by nature an unhappy consciousness with no possibility of surpassing its unhappy state.’ 14.  ‘And in fact, Sartre tells us that man makes himself lack being in order that there is being; the term ‘in order to’ clearly indicates intentionality … ’ 15.  ‘Declaring from outside that existence is unjustified is not to condemn it.’



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[Ainsi sur le plan terrestre une vie qui ne cherche pas à se fonder sera pure contingence.]16: It will be in any case. See p. 34. p. 27/7-21 [Seulement, dans le marxisme, s’il est vrai que le but, le sens de l’action, sont définis par des volontés humaines, ces volontés n’apparaissent pas comme libres : elles sont le reflet des conditions objectives par lesquelles se définit la situation de la classe, du peuple considéré ; dans le moment présent du développement du capitalisme, le prolétariat ne peut pas ne pas vouloir sa suppression comme classe ; la subjectivité se résorbe dans l’objectivité du monde donné ; révolte, besoin, espoir, refus, désir, ne sont que les résultantes des forces extérieures ; la psychologie du comportement s’efforce de rendre compte de cette alchimie.]17: See Kierkegaard’s remark on p. 129 et seq. of the Postscript. p. 33/9-34/11 [Mais l’homme se veut aussi dévoilement d’être, et, s’il coïncide avec cette volonté, il gagne, car le fait est que, par sa présence au monde, le monde devient présent. Mais le dévoilement implique une perpétuelle tension pour maintenir l’être à distance, pour s’arracher au monde et s’affirmer comme liberté : vouloir le dévoilement du monde, se vouloir libre, c’est un seul et même mouvement. La liberté est la source d’où surgissent toutes les significations et toutes les valeurs ; elle est la condition originelle de toute justification de l’existence ; l’homme qui cherche à justifier sa vie doit vouloir avant tout et absolument la liberté elle-même : en même temps qu’elle exige la réalisation de fins concrètes, de projets singuliers, elle s’exige universellement. Elle n’est pas une valeur toute constituée qui se proposerait du dehors à mon adhésion abstraite, mais elle apparaît (non sur le plan de la facticité, mais sur le plan moral) comme cause de soi :

16.  ‘So in the earthly field a life which does not try to found itself will be mere contingency.’ 17.  ‘However, in Marxism, if it is true that the goal and the sense of action are defined by human wills, these wills do not appear as free: they are the reflection of objective conditions with which the situation of the class of the considered people is defined. At this point in capitalist development, the proletariat cannot but want its abolition as a class; subjectivity is absorbed into the objectivity of the world. Revolt, need, refusal, desire, are only resultants of external forces. Behavioural psychology is striving to explain this alchemy.’


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elle est appelée nécessairement par les valeurs qu’elle pose à travers lesquelles elle se pose ; elle ne peut pas fonder un refus d’elle-même, car en se refusant elle refuserait la possibilité de tout fondement. Se vouloir moral et se vouloir libre, c’est une seule et même décision.]18: This is no more than making the best of a bad job. It cannot justify my existence, which is contingent (p. 22), unless it abolishes the contingency either by making my existence necessary or by bringing it to an end; and it does neither. p. 36/15-23 [Pour convertir cette absence en présence, ma fuite en volonté, il faut que j’assume positivement mon projet ; il ne s’agit pas de me replier sur le mouvement tout intérieur et d’ailleurs abstrait d’une spontanéité donnée, mais d’adhérer au mouvement concret et singulier par lequel cette spontanéité se définit en se jetant vers un fin …]19: See p. 44. p. 39/21-40/2 [Cependant, l’homme ne crée pas le monde ; il ne réussit à le dévoiler qu’à travers les résistances que ce monde lui oppose ; la volonté ne se définit qu’en se suscitant des obstacles ; et de par la contingence de la facticité certains obstacles se laissent vaincre, d’autres non. C’est ce qu’exprimait Descartes lorsqu’il disait que la liberté de l’homme

18.  ‘But also, man wants to be an unveiling of being; and, if he coincides with this will, he wins because the fact is that with his presence to the world the world becomes present. But the unveiling implicates a constant tension to maintain being at a distance. To tear oneself away from the world and affirm oneself as liberty: to want the unveiling of the world, to want to be free; these are one and the same movement. Liberty is the source from which spring all significations and all values. It is the original condition of all existential justifications. The man who seeks to justify his life must want before all and absolutely the realization of liberty itself; at the same time as it requires concrete ends and singular projects it requires itself universally. It is not a wholly constituted value which would offer itself from the outside to my abstract adhesion, but it appears (not on the level of facticity but on the moral plane) as cause of self. It is necessarily called by the values that it poses as and through it reposes. It cannot found a refusal of itself because by refusing itself it would refuse the possibility of any foundation. To want to be moral, to want to be free, is one and the same decision.’ 19.  ‘To correct this absence into presence, my (escaping) into will, I have to assume positively my project; there is no question of withdrawing myself into a wholly interior movement and further abstraction of a given spontaneity, but of adhering to a concrete and singular movement by which this spontaneity is defined by throwing itself towards an end.’



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est infinie, mais son pouvoir limité.]20 last sentence noted: Precisely. And S. de B. takes advantage of this to interpret ‘vouloir la liberté’ as ‘vouloir le pouvoir’, which is more to her taste. [Cependant, il est peu de vertu plus triste que la résigna­ tion.]21: This is simply prejudice, not a philosophical objection. If I have a taste for resignation there is nothing more to be said—except that it becomes my duty to wish it for everybody. [Mais on ne réussit par là qu’à sauver une notion abstraite de la liberté, on vide celle-ci de tout contenu et de toute vérité : le pouvoir de l’homme cesse d’être limité parce qu’il s’annule. C’est la singularité du projet qui determine la limitation du pouvoir ; mais c’est elle aussi qui donne au projet son contenu et qui lui permet de se fonder. Il y a des gens à qui l’idée d’échec inspire une telle horreur qu’ils se retiennent de jamais rien vouloir : mais nul se songerait à considérer cette morne passivité comme le triomphe de la liberté.]22: See p. 40. [Cependant un tel salut n’est possible que si, en dépit des obstacles et des échecs, un homme conserve la disposition de son avenir, si la situation lui ouvre encore des possibilités. Dans le cas où sa transcendance est coupée de ses buts, où il n’a plus aucune prise sur les objets qui pourraient lui donner un contenu valable, sa spontanéité se dissipe sans rien fonder ; alors il lui est interdit de justifier positivement son existence, et il en éprouve la contingence avec un dégoût

20.  ‘However, man does not create the world. He succeeds in unveiling it only through the resistances that the world sets against him. Will defines itself only by giving rise to obstacles; and from the contingency of facticity some obstacles are overcome, others not. That is what Descartes expressed when he said that the freedom of man is infinite, but his power limited.’ 21.  ‘However, there are few virtues that are sadder than resignation.’ 22.  ‘But in this way, we succeed merely in retaining an abstract notion of liberty. We empty it of all content and all truth: man’s power ceases to be limited because it nullifies itself. It is the singularity of the project which determines limitation of power. But it is also this that gives to the project its content and that permits it to base itself. There are people to whom the idea of failure inspires such fright that they abstain from ever wanting anything; but no one would think to consider this sad passivity as the triumph of liberty.’


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désolé.]23: Can one not live authentically in prison? This arbitrary assumption is necessary in order to justify the doctrine of (political) action that follows. p. 44/3-6 [Une liberté ne peut se vouloir sans se vouloir comme mouvement indéfini ; elle doit absolument refuser les contraintes qui arrêtent son élan vers elle-même …]24: What exactly does this mean? It seems that the freedom that I have (or am) is not, after all, the freedom that I have to will (p. 35 seq.): the former is absolute and totally unaffected by any constraint, whereas the latter can be opposed and frustrated. The passage from the one to the other is carried out by abusing the former as ‘abstract’ and praising the latter as ‘concrete’ (p. 37). But the former freedom is concrete in that I am always found with a concrete choice, and willing this consists in recognizing at every moment that I am totally responsible for whatever I choose, that my choice is perpetually revocable. But this is not enough for S. de B., who carries a gun. She interprets her freedom to choose as freedom to choose freely, i.e. without outside interference, and then wills this instead. At once it becomes a duty to fight opposition to our projects and, by extension, to everybody else’s projects as well. This is tub-thumping, not philosophy. p. 118/22-26 [… sa mort même n’est pas un mal, puisqu’il n’est homme qu’en tant qu’il est mortel : il doit l’assumer comme le terme naturel de sa vie, comme le risque impliqué par toute démarche vivante.]25: To say that death is simply a risk is just mauvaise foi. p. 121/24-122/5 [Il y a donc deux manières de dépasser le donné : il est très différent de poursuivre un voyage ou de s’évader de prison. Dans les deux cas le donné est présent dans son dépassement 23.  ‘However, such a salvation is only possible if, in spite of obstacles and failures, a man retains the disposition of his future, if the situation still opens possibilities to him. If his transcendence is cut off from his aims, if he does not have any more hold of the objects which could give him a content of value, his spontaneity disperses without founding anything. It is then forbidden for him to positively justify his existence, and he feels the contingency of this with a desolate disgust.’ 24.  ‘Freedom can only be willed as indefinite movement; it must absolutely refuse the limits which stop its movement towards itself.’ 25.  ‘Even his death is not a bad thing, since he is a man only as a mortal: he must assume it as the natural end of his life, like the implicated risk for all living processes.’



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p. 125/12-13 p. 196/15-18

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; mais dans un cas, présent en tant qu’accepté, dans l’autre, en tant que refusé, et cela fait une radicale différence. Hegel a confondu ces deux mouvements sous le vocable ambigu de « aufheben » …]26 ‘mais … « aufheben »’ noted: See Kierkegaard’s Postscript, pp. 199-200. [Ce qu’il faut faire, c’est fournir à l’esclave ignorant le moyen de transcender sa situation par la révolte, c’est dissiper son ignorance ; on sait que le problème des socialistes du xix e siècle a été précisément de développer chez le prolétariat une conscience de classe ; on voit dans la vie d’une Flora Tristan par exemple combien une pareille tâche était ingrate : ce qu’elle voulait pour les travailleurs, il lui fallait d’abord le vouloir sans eux.]27: Oui, en effet il est peu de vertu plus triste que le socialisme.28 [— car toute abstention est complicité, …]29 u/l: What are the dialectics of this assertion? Are not the grapes sour because S. de B. ne sait demeurer en repos dans une chambre?30 [Si nous n’aimons pas la vie pour notre propre compte et à travers autrui, il est vain de chercher d’aucune manière à la justifier.]31: This seems to imply that one cannot live authentically unless one is fond of life. S. de Beauvoir seems herself to be just a little sérieuse. If life is to be justified at all (which can only be done by abolishing its contingency) the first step, certainly, is to become authentic; but the second step is to refuse what is thus revealed, not to accept it. [… « Le vote des femmes, c’est très bien en principe ; seulement si on donne le vote aux femmes, elles voter-

26.  ‘Therefore there are two ways to overstep the given: it is very different to go on a trip and to escape from jail. In both cases the given is present in its surpassing; but in one case it is present as accepted, in the other as refused; and this makes a radical difference. Hegel mixed up these two movements under the ambiguous term “aufheben”.’ 27.  What has to be done is to furnish to the ignorant slave the possibility to transcend his situation through revolt, and to dispel his ignorance. We know that the problem of the socialists in the xixth century has been precisely to develop class-consciousness in the proletariat. One sees in the life of Flora Tristan, for example, how such work was unappreciated. What she wanted for the workers she had first to want without them. 28.  ‘Yes indeed, there are few virtues that are sadder than socialism.’ 29.  ‘—for every abstention is complicity, …’ 30.  ‘cannot stay quietly in a room?’ 31.  ‘If we don’t love life for ourselves and through others, it is futile to try to justify it in any way.’


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ont rouge. »]32: This delicious bit of candour has got Miss Pankhurst de Beauvoir hopping mad. p. 228/5-12 [Il est possible qu’un homme se refuse à rien aimer sur terre ; il prouvera ce refus et il l’accomplira par le suicide. S’il vit, c’est que, quoi qu’il dise, il demeure en lui quelque attachement à l’existence ; sa vie sera à la mesure de cet attachement, elle se justifiera dans la mesure où elle justifiera authentiquement le monde.]33: Much too simple! One does not have to be in love with Life to pause before embracing Death. p. 223/bottom This book has too much rhetoric and too little philosophy. p. 225/28-34

p. 304/28-32

Berval, René de (direction), Presence du Bouddhisme, Saigon: France-Asie [tome xvi, 153-157], février-juin 1959 ‘Liminaire’ by René de Berval [Il est pourtant à craindre, en dépit d’une vitalité certainement accrue depuis quelques décades, que la contribution du Saπgha a l’activité sociale, voire politique, que la « modernisation » de l’enseignement religieux réalisée ici et là, ne finissent par être gravement dommageables à l’aspect contemplatif — donc essentiel — de la vie bouddhique.]34: noted. ‘The Meaning of Orthodoxy in Buddhism: A Protest’ by Bhikshu Saπgharakshita [Broadly speaking, the doctrine of anattå denies that in the absolute sense there exists in any object, whether transcendental or mundane, an eternal unchanging principle of individuality or selfhood. Logically it amounts to a repudiation of the ultimate validity of the principle of self identity.] last sentence noted: It does not.

32.  ‘“Franchise for women is very well in principle; but if you give franchise to women, they will vote red.”’ 33.  ‘It is possible that a man refuses to love anything on earth. He will test this refusal and he will demonstrate it by committing suicide. If he lives it is because, whatever he says, there remains in him some attachment to existence. His life will be shaped according to this attachment. It will justify itself in so far as it will authentically justify the world.’ 34.  ‘Yet it is to be found, in spite of a vitality certainly increased during the past few decades, that the participation of the Sangha in the social scene, even politically, and that the ‘modernization’ of the religious teaching realized here and there, will in the end be seriously prejudicial to the meditative—and therefore the essential—aspect of the Buddhist life.’



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‘Face aux Troix Refuges’ by Çrama~er⁄ Dharmarak‚itå [Qui refuse le mystère refuse d’en être libéré. Cette expérience est plus impérieuse pour l’adepte mahåyåniste que le theravådin. Ce dernier peut en effet s’accrocher aux réalisme des dharma et se protège de la vue du gouffre. Au contraire, celui qui accepte l’ultime démarche du Mahåyåna, c’est à dire le développement de la Prajñåpåramitå à travers l’École de Någårjuna, se voit « détaché », précipité successivement de chacune de ses prises. De tout ce qui est nommable, de tout ce qui est faisable, on fait pour lui une vérité de convention (samv®tti satya). Il n’est rien d’extérieur ou de mental oui n’appartienne à ce domaine de la dénomination artificielle.]35: This is how adoption of wrong views creates unnecessary difficulties. ‘La Bouddha et l’intuition de l’Universel’ by Dr. Hubert Benoit [Il est intéressant de comprendre que toute la recherche du Bouddha s’est développée non pas dans la perspective objective d’un devoir à remplir, mais dans celle subjective du bonheur individuel à trouver.]36: This is no difference. ‘La Bouddha et l’avenir du Bouddhisme’ by B.R. Ambedkar [Une religion ne peut en aucun cas prétendre sanctifier ou ennoblir la pauvreté. La renonciation aux richesses par ceux qui les possèdent peut-être un état béni; jamais la pauvreté. Proclamer la noblesse intrinsèque de la pauvreté est vouloir pervertir la religion, car c’est consentir a transformer la terre en un enfer vivant, et, du même coup, perpétuer les vices et les crimes qu’engendre la misère.]37 noted and checked.

35.  ‘One who refuses the mystery refuses to be freed from it. This experience is more urgent for the Mahåyånist adept than for the Theravådin. The latter in fact may cling to the realism of all dharmas and protect himself from seeing the abyss. Conversely, one who accepts the ultimate process of the Mahåyåna, i.e. the Prajñåpåramitå development through Någårjuna’s school, finds himself ‘detached’ and successively throws off each one of its holds. Whatever is nameable, whatever is makeable, is for him a conventional truth (samv®tti satya). There is nothing, external or mental, which does not belong to this sphere of artificial denomination.’ 36.  ‘It is interesting to realize that the Buddha’s entire search evolved not in the objective perspective of a duty to fulfil, but rather with the subjective idea of an individual happiness to be found.’ 37.  ‘On no account can a religion claim to sanctify or ennoble poverty. The renunciation of wealth by those who possess it may be a blessed state; never poverty. To declare nobility intrinsic to poverty is to desire to corrupt religion, for it is to consent


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‘Le Bouddhisme d’après les Textes pålis’ by Solange Bernard-Thierry [Cependant, la priorité du canon påli n’est pas définitivement établie, et l’on s’éfforce de comparer sans partialité les autres documents, qu’ils soient en sanskrit, en chinois, en tibétain ou en d’autres langues.]38: S’efforcer est bien dit.39

Blackham, H.J., Six Existentialist Thinkers, Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1952) on Karl Jaspers [The more or less obscure and fugitive sensations, perceptions, feelings, intuitions, intimations of the private consciousness, which are in part the raw material of public knowledge and in part are intractable to scientific method, and responsive to unpredictable manifestations of reality; and the uniquely personal self-determination of the free personality. These vitally important elements pass through the filter of the most resourceful and perfected science.]: Too woolly. [The will to affirm, even in the acceptance of final frustration, is essential …] Crudely, the will to affirm is evidence of God. The will to affirm, certainly, must not be ignored (as it tends to be in Sartre); but this is not the solution. The will to affirm, bhavata~hå, is evidence of avijjå or nescience; it is evidence, that is to say, of failure to understand what it is evidence of. on Gabriel Marcel [My own being, then, and the being in which I participate are not problems before me on which I can get to work, for I have no standing and no possible existence outside of Being, and the independent standing which seems to be given to the knowing subject in reflective consciousness is a mistake which further reflection corrects.]: This is the puthujjana’s vicious circle.

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to transform earth into a living hell and, at the same time, to perpetuate crimes and vices which are generated by misery.’ 38.  ‘However, the priority of the Pali canon is not definitely established, and we are striving to compare impartially other documents, whether they be Sanskrit, Chinese, Tibetan, or other languages.’ 39.  ‘“Striving” is well said.’



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on Martin Heidegger [Kierkegaard has profoundly influenced Protestant theology, and has influenced Jaspers and Heidegger, but it is as one of the developments of Husserl’s fruitful school of pure phenomenology that existentialism takes its place in contemporary technical philosophy.] See Husserl’s article, ‘Phenomenology,’ in the Encyclopædia Britannica. [… death does not strike me down, it is not an accident which happens to me, it is from the very beginning one of my own possibilities which I nurse within me. Indeed, it is my possibility eminently, because its realization is inevitable and will be realized by me in the most authentically personal way without any possibility of avoidance or substitution.] This will do if ‘my possibility’ does not imply (as it does in Sartre) that I can choose it. It is ‘my possibility’ since at any moment it is possible that it will happen to me. [… if I can die, I need not have existed, nobody need exist, personal existence is launched between nothingness and nothingness and it is nothingness that is real, everything is absurd, the impossibility of existence is possible, nothing is necessary.] Note that Karl Barth speaks of ‘God’s impossible possibility.’ [The culpability which I fasten on myself is not the guilt of living inauthentically but the guilt of resolving to live authentically; it is original, for the Dasein, whatever it does, is itself the source of evil so soon as it assumes and accepts an existence of which it can never be master; it is culpable whatever it does so soon as it accepts and takes responsibility for a finite existence irretrievably determined and doomed. All particular faults and wrongs are metaphysically founded in this culpable nature of Dasein. When I accept with fully open eyes my existence as I find it to be, issuing from nothing into nothing, and I live it out in the light of that understanding, I make myself culpable.]: This is inadequate. A gratuitous act is not necessarily an evil act, and to accept responsibility for it is not necessarily to make oneself culpable. The root of evil, and therefore also guilt, is the conceit ‘I am’. [… to reject personal existence with the definitiveness of suicide or of Eastern nihilism.]: Mahåyåna? Things do not


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really exist: they are only thought to exist by the ignorant.— Prajñåpåramitå. [These meanings answer the questions what, what for, how, as, …]: What is the question ‘as?’ [Nothing is not merely a notional negation, not-any-thing, and thus the counter-concept opposed to Being. It can be experienced and is itself the source of all forms of negation and negativity.] last 9 words u/l [The intelligible world constructed by personal existence, in which man feels safe and at home, the world of meanings, is nihilated and he is plunged back into the sheer ‘is-ness’ of what is, his ship on which he is riding and voyaging disappears in the night and he finds himself in the deep waters and tastes their saltness.]: See Sartre’s criticism of this in L’Être et le Néant, pp. 54-55. Heidegger’s Nothing is certainly the counterpart of the world, but not of meanings in the world. With the arahat, there is no more world (in this sense), but things remain meaningful or significant of other things. on J.-P. Sartre [These two modes of being, consciousness and its object, the pour-soi and the en-soi, are not merely in contrast.]: Sartre’s fundamental mistake is to assume that the soi (self) of pour-soi and en-soi is unambiguous. It is not. In pour-soi, ‘soi’ means ‘oneself’, whereas in en-soi it means ‘itself’. The first is self as ‘subject’, the second is simply the self of ‘self-identity’. These are not the same. [Knowledge is necessarily intuition, the presence of consciousness to the object which it is not.]: A mistake. Consciousness is not present to the object which it is not; it is the presence of the object (which, of course, it is not). Otherwise, consciousness would be the subject. What, then, is the subject? Answer, no-thing is the subject—sabbe dhammå anattå. This is a costly error. [… (a possibility which raises a metaphysical problem beyond the scope of ontological description).]: In spite of his claim to steer midway between Realism and Idealism (cf p. 112) Sartre is sometimes something of an Epiphenomenalist—not openly, of course, but in his assumptions he will cheerfully allow that material circumstances can modify our intentions, but finds difficulty in understanding that our


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intentions can modify the material circumstances (the easiest example is a conversation between myself and another, where the (material) speech I hear affects my thoughts and my thoughts affect the (material) speech I utter); but it is because this is so that we can afford to ignore the word ‘circumstances’ (which implies an outside view) and speak of being ‘en situation’—which puts the account on Realism. There is no mention at all in his work of paranormal phenomena. [… ‘when I deliberate, the die is cast’.]: i.e. it is already cast. [… my consciousness of something and implicit awareness of this consciousness, which is the foundation of all, is not awareness of me and can never reach me; the pour-soi as pure flight and pursuit can never know itself as flight and pursuit, and therefore the principle which ingeniously furnishes the ontological description from within could never produce the reflective consciousness which carries out the description.]: This criticism is just. Sartre rejects Spinoza’s infinite regression—idea, ideae, ideae—for no good reason, and is thenceforward unable to give a satisfactory account of reflexion. [Simone de Beauvoir … her Pour une Morale de l’Ambiguité …]: This book, when one comes to read it, is a disappointment: it is rhetoric, not philosophy, and takes us no further than Sartre. [‘The business of any morality is to consider human life as a match which can be won or lost, and to teach men how to win.’]: No, in the match of human life one is defeated in advance. The choice is between looking this fact in the face and running away from it, and in neither case does one escape defeat. At best one delays the inevitable decision. The only victory is to stop the match. [The natural order of this human existence is willed and becomes a moral order; he is no longer explained, he is justified: he justifies himself.]: To see that one is justified is not to justify oneself. One only justifies oneself in ceasing to be justified, which means ceasing to be, tout court. One is reflexively justified in seeing that one is immediately unjustified, certainly; but one is still unjustified. In other words, we again encounter an ambiguity. And to


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see this is only to generate a fresh ambiguity, and so on in an endless regression. Although, as it turns out later, this step is moral, it is not itself the foundation of morality, since it cannot transcend ambiguity. It is moral because it states the problem, which is ambiguity (and also because it favourably affects the immediate choice—the stronger the reflexion the less immoral the immediate action), and unless the problem is stated it cannot be transcended; and it is the transcending of ambiguity that is the foundation of morality. [Sartre proposes to clear the ruins and reconstruct a dogmatic humanism which understands and assumes the eternal human situation, offering a liberation of mankind which starts with a total knowledge of man by himself.]: This dogmatic humanism (or any other humanism) is not a liberation: it is merely a suspended sentence.

Bradley, F.H., Appearance and Reality, Oxford University Press, 1893/1962 Inside Front Cover:  This book is of considerable less value than the Principles of Logic. Ñå~av⁄ra, 6.6.1964 p. 5/16-20 [The man whose nature is such that by one path alone his chief desire will reach consummation, will try to find it on that path, whatever it may be, and whatever the world thinks of it; and, if he does not, he is contemptible.] noted. p. 9/6-8 [I shall point out that the world, as so understood, contradicts itself; and is therefore appearance, and not reality.] last 4 words u/l: But we are told later (pp. 112-119) that appearance ‘belongs to’ reality. See, in particular, the bottom of p. 113 and p. 123: ‘Everything which appears must be real.’ But see also p. 430. p. 10/4-6 [A thing may be cold or hot according to different parts of my skin; and, without some relation to a skin it seems without any such quality.]: Without relation to a skin you cannot say that a (tactile) thing is; so it is incorrect to say ‘it seems without any such quality’—unless it is it cannot seem. The argument in this chapter is very superficial. p. 10/14-16 [But nose and tongue are smelt and tasted only by another nose or tongue.] noted and checked. p. 12/18-21 [… the relation of the primary qualities to the second-



ary—in which class feeling and thought have presumably to be placed—seems wholly unintelligible.] ‘the secondary … placed’ u/l: This is a good suggestion, but McTaggart (Nature of Existence, §§ 353-4), who seems to quote traditional chapter and verse, would exclude them. Primary: Size, Shape, Position, Mobility, Impenetrability. Secondary: Colour, Hardness, Smell, Taste, Sound. p. 12/37-13/1 [The extended comes to us only by relation to an organ; and, whether the organ is touch or is sight or muscle-feeling— or whatever else it may be—makes no difference to the argument.]: This means that extension should be classed as secondary, not as primary. The only primary quality of matter is time. p. 13/7-9 [… the extended thing will have its quality only when perceived by something else; …] noted and checked: But also it will only be when perceived by something else. p. 13/39-14/2 [Without secondary quality extension is not conceivable, and no one can bring it, as existing, before his mind if he keeps it quite pure.]: This is a mistake—there is a pure intuition of space. p. 14/10-15 [If it is visual, it must be coloured; and if it is tactile, or acquired in various other ways which may fall under the head of the ‘muscular sense’—then it is never free from sensations, coming from the skin, or the joints, or the muscles, or, as some would like to add, from a central source.] This is muddled—space is tactual in its essence; there is not on the one hand extension and on the other ‘muscular sensations’ (these latter being a pure invention if regarded as something other than extension.) What is here called the ‘muscular sense’ is simply the spatial sense, by which we perceive extension. p. 14/21-23 [Like the general ‘what’, they will consist in all cases of secondary quality from a sensation of the kinds I have mentioned above.]: What is a ‘secondary quality from a sensation’? Introduction of the word ‘sensation’ here invalidates the whole argument. Rewrite this paragraph without using this word and what is left? p. 14/28-30 [Extension cannot be presented, or thought of, except as one with quality that is secondary.]: As noted on p. 12, space is secondary in any case, and no contradiction arises


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when it is shown that extension is never given as a purely primary quality. p. 16/35-17/3 [‘Sweet’, ‘white’, and ‘hard’ seem now the subjects about which we are saying something. We certainly do not predicate on of the other; for, if we attempt to identify them, they at once resist.]: On the contrary, we do—but this is not to identify them. p. 17/12-13 [… we recoil in horror.] u/l: But we don’t. p. 17/20-23 [If you predicate what is different, you ascribe to the subject what it is not; and if you predicate what is not different, you say nothing at all.]: Quite right too. p. 18/30-32 [This foundation, if we say that A is like to B, is the identity X which holds these differences together.]: Yes. p. 20/20-21 [Otherwise the thing, without the points of view, appears to have no character at all …]: Nothing has any character except from some point of view. p. 25/36-38 [But I urge, on the other hand, that nothings cannot be related, and that to turn qualities in relation into mere relations is impossible.]: This is true if the qualities are homogeneous. p. 32/31-34 [Space, to be space, must have space outside itself. It for ever disappears into a whole, which proves never to be more than one side of a relation to something beyond.]: Of course. p. 33/35-37 [If you take time as a relation between units without duration, then the whole time has no duration, and is not time at all.]: Of course. p. 49/29-31 [Mere identity, however excellent, is emphatically not the relation of cause and effect.] noted. p. 50/20-22 [For, without some duration of the identical, we should have meaningless chaos, or, rather, should not have even that.] noted. p. 80/3-4 [… pleasure and pain are essentially not capable of being objects.]: In so far as they exist they are always objects! p. 80/fn.1 [Notice that our emotional moods, where we hardly could analyse them, may qualify objects aesthetically.] noted. p. 86/20-22 [Mere self is whatever part of the psychical individual is, for the purpose in hand, negative. It, at least, is irrelevant, and it may be even worse.]: O dear! p. 91/9 [sensation] u/l: i.e. perception?



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[It is not even true that at first self and not-self exist. And though it is true that pleasure and pain are the main feature on which later this distinction is based, yet it is even then false that they may not belong to the object.]: ‘I’ precedes ‘self’. Avijjåsamphassajå vedanå. [We found that reality was not the appearances, and that result must hold good; but, on the other hand, reality is certainly not something else which is unable to appear. For that is sheer self-contradiction …] noted by a wavy line. [Its diversity can be diverse only so far as not to clash, and what seems otherwise anywhere cannot be real. And, from the other side, everything which appears must be real.] noted by a wavy line. [… in asserting that the real is nothing but experience, I may be understood to endorse a common error. I may be taken first to divide the percipient subject from the universe; and then, resting on that subject, as on a thing actual by itself, I may be supposed to urge that it cannot transcend its own states. Such an argument would lead to impossible results, and would stand on a foundation of faulty abstraction. To set up the subject as real independently of the whole, and to make the whole into experience in the sense of an adjective of that subject, seems to me indefensible. And when I contend that reality must be sentient, my conclusion almost consists in the denial of this fundamental error.] Very good. The absolute [cannot be less than appearance, and hence no feeling or thought, of any kind, can fall outside its limits.]: Thought is appearance (i.e. it appears). Yes. [And if it is more than any feeling or thought which we know, it must still remain more of the same nature. It cannot pass into another region beyond what falls under the general head of sentience. For to assert that possibility would be in the end to use words without meaning. We can entertain no such suggestion except as self-contradictory, and as therefore impossible.]: Yes. [… if an idea has been manufactured and is composed of elements taken up from more than one source, then the result of manufacture need not as a whole exist out of my thought, however much that is the case with its separate elements.]: Yes.


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[For it is not true that in all religions the object is perfection; nor, where it is so, does religion possess any right to dictate to or to dominate over thought. It does not follow that a belief must be admitted to be true, because, given a certain influence, it is practically irresistible. There is a tendency in religion to take the ideal as existing; and this tendency sways our minds and, under certain conditions, may amount to compulsion. But it does not, therefore, and merely for this reason, give us truth, and we may recall other experience which forces us to doubt. A man, for instance, may love a woman whom, when he soberly considers, he cannot think true, and yet, in the intoxication of her presence, may give up his whole mind to the suggestions of blind passion. But in all cases, that alone is really valid for the intellect, which in a calm moment the mere intellect is capable of doubting. It is only that which for thought is compulsory and irresistible—only that which thought must assert in attempting to deny it—which is a valid foundation for metaphysical truth.] noted. ‘But in all cases … truth.’ double noted: Admirable. p. 133/23-31 [‘But how,’ I may be asked, ‘can you justify this superiority of the intellect, this predominance of thought? On what foundation, if on any, does such despotism rest? For there seems no special force in the intellectual axiom if you regard it impartially. Nay, if you consider the question without bias, and if you reflect on the nature of axioms in general, you may be brought to a wholly different conclusion. For all axioms, as a matter of fact, are practical. They all depend upon the will.]: Also good. p. 136/35-137/1 [Hence if we understand by perfection a state of harmony with pleasure, there is no direct way of showing that reality is perfect. For, so far as the intellectual standard at present seems to go, we might have harmony with pain and with partial dissatisfaction.]: This argument is good if pain is taken as mental pain. p. 143/17-31 [If we take up anything considered real, no matter what it is, we find in it two aspects. … There is a ‘what’ and a ‘that’, an existence and a content, and the two are inseparable. That anything should be, and should yet be nothing in particular, or that a quality should not qualify and give



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a character to anything is obviously impossible. If we try to get the ‘that’ by itself, we do not get it, for either we have it qualified, or else we fail utterly. If we try to get the ‘what’ by itself, we find at once that it is not all. It points to something beyond, and cannot exist by itself and as a bare adjective. … these aspects … are distinguishable only and are not divisible.]: Right. [But an idea is any part of the content of a fact so far as that works out of immediate unity with its existence. And an idea’s factual existence may consist in a sensation or perception, just as well as an image.]: No. The content of an idea as such is of a more reflexive order than the images that exemplify it. [For facts which are not ideal, and which show no looseness of content from existence, seem hardly actual. They would be found, if anywhere, in feelings without internal lapse, and with a content wholly single. But if we keep to fact which is given, this changes in our hands, and it compels us to perceive inconsistency of content. And then this content cannot be referred merely to its given ‘that’, but is forced beyond it, and is made to qualify something outside.]: This seems, in brief, that things are given with their significance(s) or possibilities—i.e. they transcend the actual. This is intentionality. [For it is in and by ideas only that thought moves and has life.]: In other words, thought is essentially discursive. [Hence, truth shows a dissection and never an actual life. Its predicate can never be equivalent to its subject. And if it became so, and if its adjectives could be at once self-consistent and re-welded to existence, it would not be truth any longer.]: Truth is a statement of possibility or significance. [It would have then passed into another and a higher reality.]: i.e. All-at-once, or God. [And there is no impossibility in thought’s existing as an element, and no self-contradiction in its own judgement that it is less than the universe.]: Because you can think thought, which is then a double transcendence, and so on. [For I do not deny that reality is an object of thought; I deny that it is barely and merely so.]: In reflexion you have the present and its image together.


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[Thought would be present as a higher intuition; will would be there where the ideal had become reality; and beauty and pleasure and feeling would live on in this total fulfilment. Every flame of passion, chaste or carnal, would still burn in the Absolute unquenched and unabridged, a note absorbed in the harmony of its higher bliss.]: Hurrah! p. 152/22-23 [We cannot imagine, I admit, how in detail this can be.]: We cannot indeed! p. 155/37-156/2 [I mean that its detail always goes beyond itself, and is indefinitely relative to something outside.]: It is infinitely significant: it has infinite determinations. p. 173/38-39 [For what is possible, and what a general principle compels us to say must be, that certainly is.] noted. p. 226/25-27 [Hence I cannot prove that the yesterdayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s self, which I construct, did, as such, have an actual existence in the past.]: It is not a question whether my self did have an existence in the past, but whether it does have an existence in the past. I.e. does it now exist as past? I.e. does my past self now exist? p. 231/9-17 [And we sometimes forget that this world, in the mental history of each of us, once had no existence. Whatever view we take with regard to the psychological origin of extension, the result will be the same. There was a time when the separation of the outer world, as a thing real apart from our feeling, had not even been begun. The physical world, whether it exists independently or not, is, for each of us, an abstraction from the entire reality.] noted. p. 231/32-232/4 [And we find no difficulty in the idea of a bodily reality remaining still and holding firm when every self has been removed. Such a supposition to the average man appears obviously possible, however much, for other reasons, he might decline to entertain it. And the assurance that his supposition is meaningless nonsense he rejects as contrary to what he calls common sense.] noted. p. 232/8-10 [â&#x20AC;Ś and the physicist himself, outside his science, still habitually views the world as what he must believe it cannot be.] noted. p. 232/17-19 [He is forced to the conclusion that all I know is an affection of my organism, and then my organism itself turns out to be nothing else but such an affection.] noted.



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[Is there any Nature not experienced by a finite subject? Can we suppose in the Absolute a margin of physical qualities, which, so to speak, do not pass through some finite percipient? Of course, if this is so, we cannot perceive them.]: Berkeley. [The question is, when we have abstracted from finite centres of feeling, whether we have not removed all meaning from such sensible quality.]: Quite! [Nature will not merely be the region that is presented and also thought of, but it will, in addition, include matter which is only thought of. Nature will hence be limited solely by the range of our intellect. It will be the physical universe apprehended in any way whatever by finite souls.] noted. [But, on the other hand, to take sameness as destroyed by diversity, makes impossible all thought and existence alike. It is a doctrine, which, if carried out, quite abolishes the Universe.] noted. [… the whole question is … whether in Nature … qualities are actually so to be identified with extension. … I find no reason to think that this is so. If in two parts of one extended there are distinctions sufficient to individualize, and to keep these two things still two, when their separate spaces are gone—then clearly these two things may be compenetrable. For penetration is the survival of distinct existence notwithstanding identification in space. And thus the whole question really turns on the possibility of such a survival. Cannot, in other words, two things still be two, though their extensions have become one? We have no right then (until this possibility is got rid of) to take the parts of each physical world as essentially exclusive. We may without contradiction consider bodies as not resisting other bodies. We may take them as standing towards one another under certain conditions, as relative vacua, and as freely compenetrable. And, if in this way we gain no positive advantage, we at least escape from the absurdity, and even the scandal, of an absolute vacuum.]: This is very good. [That things to be the same must always be different, and to be different must be, therefore, the same—this is not a paradox, until it is paradoxically stated. It does not seem


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p. 450/13-15 p. 452/1-9


absurd, unless, wrongly, it is taken to imply that difference and sameness themselves are actually not different.] noted. [So long as we avoid this mistake, we may, and even must, affirm that things are different, so far as they are the same, and the same, so far as they are different. To get difference, or sameness, bare would be to destroy its character.] noted. [And thus in the soul we can have habits, while habits that are but physical exist, perhaps, only through a doubtful metaphor.] noted. [We should be compelled rather to assert that (in a sense) the soul has been, because it now is.]: Excellent! [We must, in short, admit that some appearances really do not appear, and that hence a licence is involved in our use of the term.]: But this should have been said earlier. [For we can think of our own total surcease, but we cannot imagine it. Against our will, and perhaps unconsciously, there creeps in the idea of a reluctant and struggling self, or of a self disappointed, or wearied, or in some way discontented. And this is certainly not a self completely extinguished. There is no fear of death at all, we may say, except either incidentally or through an illusion.]: This is all very well, but the ‘illusion’ is universal. Sabbe bhåyanti maccune (Dh. 129) ‘All fear death.’ [If you are to be perfect, then you, as such, must be resolved and cease …] noted and u/l: Yes. [A personal continuance is possible … On the other hand it is better to be quit of both hope and fear, than to lapse back into any form of degrading superstition. And surely there are few greater responsibilities which a man can take on himself, than to have proclaimed or even hinted, that without immortality all religion is a cheat and all morality a self-deception.] noted; ‘without immortality’ u/l: The confusion here lies in the phrase ‘without immortality’. Bradley is assuming that ‘personal continuance’, if there is such a thing, means another life in some radically different sense of the word life. But suppose ‘personal continuance’ is simply a series of finite lives, similar in essentials to this,—then it becomes something to be feared, not hoped for. Belief in an eternal life in heaven or hell is certainly a


‘degrading superstition’—but then so is the idea that when this life is ended we are quit of existence. p. 547/40-548/35 [Let us take the instance, given by Mr. Stout, of a child or other young animal desiring milk. The perception, visual and otherwise, of the breast or teat suggest the sucking, but that sucking I take to qualify the perception and not to be an image apart. The breast becomes by ideal suggestion the breast sucked, while on the other hand by some failure of adjustment the breast is not sucked in fact. The perceived breast is therefore at once qualified doubly and inconsistently with itself, and the self of the animal also is qualified doubly and inconsistently. That self is both expanded by ideal success and contracted by actual failure in respect of one point, i.e. the sucking. And so far as the expansion, under the whole of the above conditions, becomes actual, we get the sense of activity. And there actually is an idea present here, though there is no image nor anything that could properly be called forethought. Or take a dog who, coming to some grassy place, begins to run and feels himself to be active. Where is here the idea? It might be said that there is none, because there is no forethought nor any image. But this in my opinion would be an error, an error fatal to any sound theory of the mind. And I will briefly point out where the idea lies, without of course attempting to analyse fully the dog’s complex state. The ground in front of the dog is a perception qualified on the other hand, not by images, but by an enlargement of its content so as to become ‘ground run over’. It comes to the dog at once as both ‘run over’ and ‘not’. And the ‘run over’ is ideal, though it is not an explicit idea or a forethought or in any sense a separate image. Again the dog comes to himself as qualified by an actual running, supplemented by an ideal running over what is seen in front of him. In his soul is a triumphant process of ideal expansion passing over unbrokenly into actual fruition, the negative perception of the ground as ‘not run over’ serving only as the vanishing condition of a sense of activity with no cloud or check of failure. This is what I mean by an idea which is not explicit, nor, except that the name is perhaps a bad one, do I see anything in


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p. 550/3-11

p. 550/22-26

p. 2/29 p. 3/27-30

p. 6/19 p. 6/24 p. 7/18-19 p. 10/28-30


it deserving censure. I should perhaps have done better to have used no name at all. But the distinction itself, I must repeat, is throughout every aspect of mind of vital importance.]: With due qualification, this is correct. [And it is in the end idle to strive to divide the being of the known, and to set up there a being-in-itself which remains outside and is dependent of knowledge. For the being-initself of the known, if it were not itself experienced and known, would for the knower be nothing and could not possibly be asserted. And knowledge which (wrongly) seems to fall outside of and to make no difference to the known, could in any case not be ultimate. It must rest on and presuppose a known the essence of which consists in being experienced, and which outside of knowledge is nothing.] noted. [The knower is evidently and plainly altered; and, as to the known, if it remains unchanged, it would itself remain outside of the process, and it would not be with it that the knower would be concerned. And its existence asserted by the knower would be a self-contradiction.] noted. Bradley, F.H., The Principles of Logic, Oxford University Press, [1881] 1958 [fact] u/l: For fact read thing throughout. [Thus every flower exists and has its own qualities, but not all have a meaning. Some signify nothing, while others stand generally for the kind which they represent, while others again go on to remind us of hope or love.] ‘Some signify nothing’ u/l: This is never utter entirely true, though certainly not everything is a symbol. [… the actual idea at each moment …] and [… that psychical event which is in ceaseless flux …] ‘ceaseless flux’ u/l: This is too quickly said. You speak earlier of a moment; what is that? of idea and sensation, [Fleeting and self-destructive as is their very endurance, wholly delusive their supposed individuality, …]: Why? [By the truth of a judgement we mean that its suggestion is more than an idea, that it is fact or in fact.]: Here, fact is not the same as thing.


p. 14/24 p. 15/1-5

p. 16/2-6

p. 16/26-32

p. 28/16-17 p. 28/21-29

p. 29/32-34

[An orange presents us with visual sensations, …]: This simply means that the orange is visible. [Let us suppose in the first place that the ‘idea’ maintains itself. Then no doubt, as one fact, it stands in mental relation with the fact of the sensation. The two phenomena coexist as a headache may coexist with a syllogism, but such psychical coherence is far from assertion.] ‘psychical coherence’ u/l: Sensation—i.e. feeling and perception—and images (or ideas) are not psychical in the same sense. Images are mental (= imaginary) simply on account of being images; sensations are mental since they are not material. There is imaginary matter (or material images) and real sensation. Omit the word ‘psychical’ in line 5. Also ‘mental’ in line 2. [… to merge the content of an image in a modified presentation, is but one step towards judgment, and it is a very long step beyond association. While conjunction or coherence of psychical phenomena is not only not judgement, but would not serve as its earliest basis and beginning.]: External. (Omit the word ‘psychical’.) [In an abnormal state such images, it is well known, may become hallucinations, and take their place in the room before our eyes as actual perceptions. But with an educated man they would be recognized as illusions, and would not be judged to be outwardly real, any more than the fainter and normal images are judged to be anywhere but in our own minds.]: This is rather begging the question; ‘an educated man’, here, is almost equivalent to ‘a right thinking man’—i.e. someone who agrees with Bradley. [It is identical, not because it is simply the same, but because it is the same amid diversity.] double noted. [… every judgment affirms either the identity which persists under difference, or the diversity which is true of one single subject. … We should then have to ask if, in the end, every possible relation does not involve a something in which it exists, as well as something between which it exists, and it might be difficult to reconcile the claims of these propositions.] noted. [That the thing as it is, and as it appears in perception, are not the same thing, is, we all are aware, a very late afterthought.]: But still not late enough.


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p. 29/37-30/2 [That a fact should be, and should yet be an appearance, should be true of, and belong to, something not itself; or again, should be illusion, should exist and yet be false, because its content is an adjective neither of itself nor of any other substantive—these distinctions are impossible for an early intelligence.] ‘an early intelligence’ u/l: And also for a very late intelligence. Abstract thought is not the highest manifestation of human activity. See Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 267. p. 33/9 [… exists but in our heads.] u/l: The expression is a fiction— nothing exists in our heads but our brains (or sometimes a headache). p. 33/36-38 [But judgment is the act which, while it recognizes the idea as appearance, nevertheless goes on to predicate it.] ‘as appearance’ u/l: i.e. as imaginary. p. 35/1-2 [… nothing ever is associated without in the process being shorn of particularity.]: In the context of judgement this is approximately true. p. 43/3-6 [Wherever we predicate, we predicate about something which exists beyond the judgment, and which … is real, either inside our heads or outside them.] ‘inside … them’ u/l: i.e. either real reality or real imagination. p. 45/19-20 [The individual is so far from being merely particular that, in contrast with its own internal diversity, it is a true universal.] ‘in contrast … diversity’ u/l p. 45/22-23 [We are accustomed to speak of, and believe in, realities which exist in more than one moment of time or portion of space.] ‘moment’ and ‘portion’ u/l: If these are homogeneous, then a ‘moment’ is not the same as an ‘instant’, which corresponds to a ‘point’. p. 45/fn. [If space and time are continuous … we can at once proceed to the conclusion, no mere particular exists. Every phenomenon will exist in more times or spaces than one; and against that diversity will be itself one universal.]: But space and time are not continuous in a simple sense. Continuity is an ambiguous notion. See pp. 52-3. p. 47/3-5 [If we think these puzzles too technical or sought out, let us take more obvious ones. Have the past and the future we talk of so freely any real existence?]: Is this more obvious?



p. 51/10-13 p. 51/30-38

p. 52/19-22

p. 52/28-29 p. 52/fn.

p. 53/7-9

[Are we to hold that the real … is identical with the merely momentary appearance?]: Which momentary appearance? [‘The present is real’; this seems indubitable. And are we to say that the momentary appearance is therefore real? This indeed would be mistaken. If we take the real as that which is confined to a single ‘here’ or a single ‘now’ … we shall have questions on our hands we shall fail to dispose of. For … we are threatened with the loss of every proposition which extends beyond the single instant.]: But a single ‘here’ or ‘now’ in the sense of a point or an instant is a fantasy. This is tilting at windmills. [… we fall into a hopeless dilemma. This moment which we take either has no duration, and in that case it turns out no time at all; or, if it has duration, it is a part of time, and is found to have transition in itself.]: Good! [… the now and the here must have some extension. For no part of space or time is a final element.]: Yes. [If time consists of discrete parts, it is hard to see how the fact of succession can possibly be explained, unless time be taken between these parts of time. And that would lead to untenable conclusions. But it is the fact of change which shows that time is continuous. The rate of change, the number of events in every part of time, may, so far as we know, be increased indefinitely; and this means that in every part of time more than one event may take place. If the parts be discrete, then not only will motion imply that a thing is in several places in one time (and this is a fact), but also (which is absurd) that throughout all these places no time elapses, that they are strictly contemporaneous. I should be glad to enter into the discussion at length, but the subject cannot properly be treated by logic.]: Except for the assumption of time as an absolute medium this note is right. The fact of change shows that time is continuous in that it is not made up of instants of time with spaces in between, but it does not show that it is uniform. At any level there are units of time separated by instantaneous changes. ‘But it is the fact of change … the number of events in every part of time’ further noted: You cannot speak of ‘parts’ in continuous time. [‘Now’, in this sense, stands for ‘simultaneous with’; it


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signifies not existence but bare position in the series of time.] ‘the series of time’ u/l p. 53/12-15 [The real is that with which I come into immediate contact, and the content of any part of time, any section of the continuous flow of change, is present to me if I directly encounter it.] ‘continuous flow of change’ u/l: Provided the expressions ‘the continuous flow of change’ and ‘the series of time’ are eventually to be abandoned, all this is admirable. It rather seems as if Bradley accepts a priori the idea of time as a ‘continuous flow of changes’ (i.e. as a flux), and when finds that, so conceived, it is incompatible with reality (see p. 57). Can he not take the final step and see that the nature of time most be discovered from consideration of the nature of reality? p. 53/24-33 [(i) Two events in time are now to one another, if both are given simultaneously in my series. (ii) Since the real appears in the series of time, the effort to find it both present and existing within that series, creates the fiction of the atomic now. (iii) If the real can never exist in time, but only appear there, then that part of the series in which it touches me is my present. (iv) And this suggests the reflection that presence is really the negation of time …]: It is the negation of an absolute time (‘continuous flow of change’), but once the idea of absolute time is abandoned it will be found that presence and time do not clash. We speak correctly of ‘the present time’. p. 54/19-23 [If we would but observe it, should see it itself to be a fluid sequence whose parts offer no resistance to division, and which is both now, and itself without and made up of nows.]: Quite so: in fact an impossible notion. p. 54/32-40 [If it really is necessary to have some image, perhaps the following may save us from worse. Let us fancy ourselves in total darkness hung over a stream and looking down on it. The stream has no banks, and its consent is covered one filled continuously with floating things. Right under our faces is a bright illuminated spot on the water, which ceaselessly widens and narrows its area, and shows us what passes away on the current. And this spot that is light is our now, our present.]: This is ruined by the retention of the notion of flux. p. 54/40-55/4 [We may go still further and anticipate a little. We have not



only an illuminated place, and the rest of the stream in total darkness. There is a paler light which, both up and down stream, is shed on what comes before and after out now. And this paler light is the offspring of the present.]: Yes, but … p. 55/10-12 [In this image we shall mark two things, if we are wise. It is possible, in the first place, that the light of the present may come from behind us, …]: ? p. 62/20-22 [… synthetic judgments are possible only by being connected with what is given at this very instant.] ‘at this very instant’ u/l: ‘at present’, not ‘at this point-instant’. p. 62/30-40 [Let the past and future be as real as you please, but by what device shall I come in contact with them, and refer to them my ideas, unless I advance directly to the given, and to them indirectly? It is possible, I am aware, to assert that past realities are directly presented, and possible also (for all I know) to say the same of the future, and of all the space I am not in contact with, and of all the qualities that I do not perceive. In this way, no doubt, we dispose of the difficulty, and indeed may make a very simple matter of any kind of problem, if indeed any problems any longer will exist.]: But we cannot possibly even mention the word ‘time’ unless we do in some way have experience of past (as ‘no more’) and future (as ‘not yet’). Bradley has overlooked this. p. 64/35-39 [… it is only the ‘this’ which is real, and ideas will suffice so far as ‘thisness’, but can never give ‘this.’ It is perhaps a hard saying and announces difficulties we shall need both courage and patience to contend with.]: Yes. p. 64/40-65/3 [… psychical events, … —every possible phenomenon that can be present—both is ‘this’ and has ‘thisness.’] ‘physical events’ u/l: i.e. experiences. But if ideas, too, are ‘this’ they transcend their presentation no less than the real, and there is regress to infinity (see note 13). p. 65/11-12 [… how far it holds of the actual fact, and how far only of the mere appearance …] u/l: There is no difference. p. 66/11-16 [In every judgment, where we analyse the given, and where as the subject we place the term ‘this,’ it is not an idea which is really the subject. In using ‘this’ we do use an idea, and that idea is and must be universal; but what we mean, and


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p. 66/24-28

p. 67/9-13

p. 67/25-31

p. 68/3-29


fail to express, is one reference to the object which is given as unique.]: Yes. [… we have in addition another idea. We have the idea of immediate contact with the presented reality; and it is that idea which is signified by ‘this,’ and which qualifies the idea which stands as the subject of our analytic judgment.]: Phassa. [… presence, though it does not fall within the content, though we can hardly call it a quality of the appearance, yet is recognized as the same amid a change of content, is separable from it, and makes a difference to it.] ‘though … appearance’ u/l: Consciousness is negative as regards essence. It is an ‘absolute universal’, unlike the others, which are ‘relative universal’. [The idea of ‘this’ has a striking difference. Distinguished as an aspect of presented reality, when we call it up we take any perception or feeling that is given and, attending to the aspect of presence within it, recognize that as the meaning of our term. We contemplate it ideally, without any reference to the content of that which is actually before us.]: Quite. This is reflexion as opposed to reflection. [… the presented instance of reality is unique. By discrimination we are able to fix that uniqueness in the shape of an idea. We thereupon try to make it the idea of something else. But, for the idea to be true of something else, that something else must be present and unique. We have then either two unique presentations, or one must disappear. If the first one goes, the idea goes with it. If the last one goes, there is now no fact for the idea to be referred to. In either case there can be no judgment. The idea, we see, is not the true idea of anything other than its own reality. It is a sign which, if we judge, can signify nothing except itself. To be least alone then when most alone, and to enjoy the delights of solitude together, are phrases which have a very good sense; but, taken in their bare and literal meaning, they would exemplify the contradiction we have here before us. Between the fact and the idea of the ‘this’ in judgment, there can be no practical difference. The idea of this would be falsely used, unless what it marks were actually presented. But in that case we should be trying to use a sign, when we


p. 69/fn.

p. 71/8-10

p. 71/13-15

p. 71/18-19 p. 71/24-26 p. 71/36-37 p. 71/bottom p. 73/25-29

have before us the fact which is signified. We can use the idea so far as to recognize the fact before us as a fact which is ‘this;’ but such a use does not go beyond the given. It affirms of the subject a predicate without which the subject disappears. … the addition of the idea adds nothing to the subject.]: All this argument is excellent. It seems that ‘absolute universals’ cannot be abstractions—see NoD mano (b). There is no particular content to abstract from—it is already ‘in brackets’. Or again, one cannot even attempt to think existence in isolation from existence. [‘This’ is not the only idea which can never be true as a symbol. I will not ask to what extent ‘this’ means ‘for me,’ but what has been said of ‘this’ will held in the main of ‘I’, ‘me’ and ‘mine.’ But there are difficulties here which we can not discuss. We may remark in passing that, for the purposes of metaphysics, it would be necessary to find all those ideas whose content appears not able to be used as the adjective of something else.]: Very good. [The mere perpetual disappearance in time of the given appearance is itself the negation of its claim to self-existence.] ‘Perpetual disappearance in time’ u/l: An invariant does not ‘perpetually disappear in time’. This ‘time’ is an unjustified assumption. on reality [Living by relation to what it excludes, it transcends its limit to join another element, and invites that element within its own boundaries.]: But this is failure to see that there are different levels of generality. [There is no solid point of either time or space.] u/l: All right—than abandon the myth! [The real can not be identical with the content that appears in presentation. It for ever transcends it, and give us a title to make search elsewhere.]: On the contrary, it is. [A completed series in time or space can not possibly exist.]: It can, if it accelerates. : Cf. Kierkegaard’s Postscript pp. 102-3 and 299-302. See also NoD, FS II, §§4&5. [There are cases where the subject or, if we please, the Ego seems divided in two. When one self is present the other is absent, and the memories of either self are distinct. Their pasts and futures do not ever touch. The explanation that


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p. 74/23-24 p. 75/10-17

p. 86/7-9

p. 93/17-18 p. 93/20-21

p. 93/27-31

p. 93/31-36


is offered, and which seems sufficient, will illustrate our theme. It is because the present selves are different that the past and future selves are foreign. It is because one system of ideas has not got a point of connection with the other system, or has rather some point which excludes the connection, that the one can never be used to extend ideally a present which belongs to the other.]: In mathematical terms, two lines of behaviour in an absolute or state-determined system cannot start from the same point; two such lines, in other words, cannot intersect. [If a fact or event is what is felt or perceived, then a fact that is past is simple nonsense …]: But then so is the present one, if by ‘present’ we mean a ‘point-instant’. [Synthetic judgments thus cease to be merely adjectival …. They are … directly related to perception. But their ideas are never referred as adjectives to the presentation itself. They are attributed to the reality, which both shows itself there, and extends itself beyond.]: Fortunately, this removes all necessity for ‘present’ perception. If everything is ‘as if’ there is nothing to worry about. [A supposal is, in short, an ideal experiment. It is the application of a content to the real, with a view to see what the consequence is …]: This marks clearly the discursive nature of abstraction, of which the syllogism is, the most pronounced example. [In transcending what is given by actual perception, we without any doubt make use of an inference.] ‘we … inference’ u/l: Only if we judge. [By itself this synthesis is merely universal, and is therefore hypothetical.] ‘therefore’ u/l: No, not ‘therefore’. It is hypothetical in that it is a judgement, but universals are not necessarily a part of judgements. (As adjectives, of course, they are part of judgements.) [… judgments which assert within what is given in present perception … seem categorical because they content themselves with the analysis of the given, and predicate of the real nothing but a content that is directly presented.] ‘directly presented’ u/l: In a point-instant? [… the elements of these judgments must actually exist. … I am sure that nothing else is attributed. I am sure that


I do not make any inference, and that I do not generalize. And how than can my assertion fail to be true?]: I am not so sure. p. 94/5-8 [The fact, which is given us, is the total complex of qualities and relations which appear to sense. But what we assert of this given fact is, and can be, nothing but an ideal content.] ‘an ideal content’ u/l: which is necessarily a discursive generalization. p. 95/12-16 [Such naive assurance of the outward reality of all mental distinctions, such touching confidence in the crudest identity of thought and existence, is worthy of the school which so loudly appeals to the name of Experience.]: All right, but an idea is still a discursive generalization. p. 95/23-27 [… thought in the end is the measure of things, yet at least this is false, that the divisions we make within a whole all answer to elements whose existence does not depend on the rest.]: No—all knowledge is ultimately intuitive. p. 95/38-39 [The whole that is given us is a continuous mass of perception and feeling …] ‘continuous mass’ u/l: An ‘organized complex’ would be better. p. 97/3-8 [In the religious consciousness God and Man are elements that are given to us in connection. But, reflecting on experience, we make distinctions, and proceed as above to harden these results of analysis into units. We thus have God as an unit on one side, and Man as an unit on the other: and then we are puzzled about their relation.]: Quite. p. 99/13-22 [The difficulty is insuperable. … No possible mind could represent to itself the completed series of space and time; since, for that to happen, the infinite process must hate come to an end, and be realized in a finite result. And this can not be. It is not merely inconceivable psychologically; it is metaphysically impossible.]: It is insuperable because it rests on false assumptions about the nature of time. p. 99/39-100/5 [… the statement … rests in the end … upon a ‘because,’ which, although unknown, is none the less real. … But even this claim it is impossible to admit.]: This is Bradley’s Idealism. To correct this read Sartre’s L’Être et le Néant, pp. 11-14. p. 117/12-16 [But in negative judgment … we do not say what there is in A which makes B incompatible. We often, if asked,


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should be unable to point out and to distinguish this latent hindrance; and in certain cases no effort we could make would enable us to do this.] last phrase noted: This seems incredible. p. 121/30-122/1 [We must not, if we can help it, introduce into logic the problems of the ‘dialectical’ view. It may be, after all, that everything is just so far as it is not, and again is not just so far as it is. Everything is determined by all negation; for it is what it is as a member of the whole, and its relation to all other members is negative. Each element in the whole, itself the whole ideally while actually finite, transcends itself by mere self-assertion, and by mere self-emphasis brings forth the other that characterizes and negates it. If everything thus has its discrepant in itself, then everything in a sense must be its own discrepancy. Negation is not only one side of reality, but in the end it is either side we please.]: This is very good, provided the ‘whole’ is understood as any whole, not as ‘The Whole’—see p. 650. p. 122/20-23 [What denial tells us is merely this, that, when we bring the discrepant up, it is rejected. Whether what repels it is entirely independent, or whether it has itself produced or solicited what it excludes, is quite irrelevant.]: Actually, the latter: but only to a certain extent. p. 122/28-34 [The dialectical method, in its unmodified form, may be untenable. It has, however, made a serious attempt to deal with the relation of thought to reality. We can hardly say that of those eminent writers who are sure that logic is the counterpart of things, and have never so much as asked themselves the question, if the difference and identity, with which logic operates, are existing relations between actual phenomena.] ‘We can … of things’ noted: Hegel presumably. p. 123/9-25 [The contradictory idea, if we take it in a merely negative form, must be banished from logic. If Not-A were solely the negation of A, it would he on assertion without a quality; and would be a denial without anything positive to serve as its ground. A something that is only not something else … is a mere nonentity which can not be real. … It is impossible for anything to be only Not-A. … It is less than nothing, for nothing itself is not wholly negative. Nothing at least is empty thought, and that means at least my thinking emp-



tily. Nothing means nothing else but failure. And failure is impossible unless something fails; but Not-A would be impersonal failure itself.]: It is everything other than A. p. 126/n.3 [… The beginning of negation is the exclusion of an ideal change in the object—this exclusion not being retained by the mind, though action is thereby prevented. By ‘action’ (I should add) is not meant necessarily action which is ‘practical.’]: Action is intention, yes. Manokamma. p. 130/17-33 [‘Man, woman, and child,’ have a common basis in ‘human being.’ … ‘In England and America,’ ‘alive or dead,’ commit us to the statements ‘somewhere not elsewhere’ and ‘organized being.’ And so, if we call a man ‘bad or good,’ we say at least he is a moral agent. There is no exception to the truth of this rule. Even existence and non-existence have so much in common that, in any sense in which we can use them, they imply some kind of contact with my mind. We have seen that there is no pure negation. So, in every disjunction and as the ground of it, there must be the assertion of a common quality, the sphere within which the disjunction is affirmed.]: Very good. ‘Even existence and non-existence … contact with my mind’ double noted: This is why everything exists either in reality or in imagination, either presently or absently. p. 136/30-38 [‘A is b or c’ may be expressed by (i) If A is b it is not c, and if A is c it is not b, (ii) If A is not b then it is c, and if A is not c then it must be b. … The second pair are based on the assumption that, because we do not find a predicate of A which excludes b or c, therefore there is none.] ‘because … none’ noted: Bradley’s hesitation here is justified. In NoD (FS) we start from a simple disjunction between o and x and then show that this implies a fourfold disjunction—a thing A, in other words, is necessarily one present and three absents. In practice this is seen in the three dimensions of space, which require four points (o, x, y, z) to fix them. p. 137/18-138/40 [Disjunction means ‘or,’ and, viewed psychologically, ‘or’ stands for Choice. Hence it may be useful to consider here how choice arises. Where something is desired, where there are various ways of realizing this end, and where I find that I can not have all of these as a whole and at once—and where, by this negation, action has been suspended—the result


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p. 141/5-19

p. 145/10-12 p. 146/24-26


may be choice. And, in choosing, I accept one way while rejecting the rest. … And obviously the ‘or’ thus contained in choice is exclusive; and any other view as to ‘or’ would, here at least, conflict with plain fact. … What is true here is that when, and so far as, in choice or otherwise, you identify yourself with one possibility, the residue tends to be regarded or at least treated, so far, as not even possible. It is taken for our purpose, we may say, in the lump and as all one, and so, we may add, is taken but as one only. … In a complete and perfect system, where all conditions were filled in, the real Universe would have all its determinations at once, all as connected and each as qualifying the others and the whole. And here negation would disappear except as one aspect of positive and complementary distinction. But for us this ultimate stage of the intellect remains an ideal, in the sense that it can not in detail and everywhere be attained completely.] bottom of p. 137: This is admirable (except for ‘Universe’ on the next page). [The principle of Identity is often stated in the form of a tautology, ‘A is A.’ If this really means that no difference exists on the two sides of the judgments, we may dismiss it at once. It is no judgment at all. As Hegel tells us, it sins against the very form of judgment; for, while professing to say something, it really says nothing. It does not even assert identity. For identity without difference is nothing at all. It takes two to make the same, and the least we can have is some change of event in a self-same thing, or the return to that thing from some suggested difference. For, otherwise, to say ‘It is the same as itself’ would be quite unmeaning. We could not even have the appearance of judgment in ‘A is A,’ if we had not at least the difference of position in the different A’s; and we can not have the reality of judgment, unless some difference actually enters into the content of what we assert.] ‘For identity … suggested difference’: Yes. after ‘what we assert’: But the fact remains that one comes across assertions that ‘A is not A’ that make ‘A is A’ synthetic. E.g. Sartre, L’Être et le Néant, p. 33. [… if anything is individual it is self-same throughout, and in all diversity must maintain its character.]: Of course. [We might remark that no thing excludes any other so long


as they are able to remain side by side, that incompatibility begins when you occupy the same area …]: Two things are discrepant simply by being two. They are not both ‘this’. p. 146/bottom : ‘A is not both b and not-b’ means ‘A is not both b and c or d or e.’ (See p. 136.) p. 147/6-8 [And this does not mean that if a miracle in psychology were brought about, and the mind did judge both affirmatively and negatively, both judgments might be true.]: It is a common enough miracle. p. 147/12-16 [In the nature of things (this is what it all comes to) there are certain elements which either can not be conjoined at all, or can not be conjoined in some special way; and the nature of things must be respected by logic.]: For can read are. p. 147/27-33 [But in the present instance the law of Contradiction has had the misfortune to be flatly denied from a certain theory of the nature of things.]: Hegel! See Kierkegaard, Postscript, p. 270 foll. p. 152/22-32 [Disjunction asserts an area of incompatibles. Affirmation or denial of b is here the area within which A falls. The evidence that it does not fall outside and that all the discrepants are completely given, may be called my impotence to find any other.]: This needs correction in view of the fact that disjunction is, ‘A is b or c or d or e’ (see p. 136). Thus ‘A is b or not-b’ means ‘A either is b or it is c or d or e’. All the discrepants are completely given. 152/bottom : The three principles may be taken as:— 1. A is A—A is still A whether it is b or c or d or e. 2. A  is not both b and not-b—A is not both b and c or d or e. 3. A is either b or not-b—A is either b or c or d or e. p. 153/28-30 [‘Is motion continuous? Yes or no.’ I decline to answer until you tell me if; by saying Yes, I am taken to deny that it is also discrete.]: The point is that continuity is a selfcontradictory notion. (A = B, B = C; A ≠ C, whence A is not-A.) If you contradict a self-contradictory notion you get one that is no less self-contradictory. But see NoD, pa†iccasamuppåda (c). p. 155/1-4 [… if Things-in-themselves are taken as such to have existence, then that is not proved by our Excluded Middle, but is a sheer assumption on which we base it and which


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p. 158/12-14 p. 165/n.12

p. 166/n.12

p. 166/n.17

p. 173/20-21

p. 187/10 p. 187/24-30

p. 188/1-2 p. 188/2-22


it presupposes.]: The three principles are not judgements at all, since they are not abstract. They are about the ‘this’. Bradley, I think, has not seen this. [But to hold that what contradicts the real must be real, is a logical mistake which I cannot venture to attribute to Prof. Jevons.]: God end the devil? But what is the real? [… the principle of Excluded Middle … presupposes a disjoined world of incompatibles, and its truth is but relative and limited to Reality taken in the character of such a world. … If we accept the view that no truth is quite true and no error merely false … we must admit that Excluded Middle, however necessary and important, is not true absolutely.]: ? [… the principle that every idea is attributed to Reality … has no special connection with Excluded Middle. And the same thing holds again of the corollary that, where all possibles but one are excluded, the one left is actually real.] noted. [‘False alternative.’ … must mean that Excluded Middle has been assumed to hold outside its own limited sphere, and that hence it does not hold everywhere. … But I agree that it is certainly possible, and sometimes easy, to object wrongly to the legitimate and necessary use of Excluded Middle.]: But surely we cannot exclude self-contradictory notions from the sphere of these principles. [Are universals always more abstract than particulars?]: Agreed. They are not. Abstraction is irrelevant to the question of universals. In the preceding sections the discussion was about adjectivals, which are abstractions; here it is about universals. [But the universal is nothing whatever but an adjective.] u/l: See p. 173. [The true particular … has no continuance, and in space it can not occupy extension. … Such a particular is of course not to be verified in experience.] ‘Such … experience’ u/l: Quite! [The abstract universal and the abstract particular are what does not exist.]: as such. [The concrete particular and the concrete universal both have reality, and they are different names for the individual.


p. 190/9-13

p. 191/3-5 p. 193/12-13 p. 195/n.27 p. 205/11-13

p. 206/9 p. 206/24-25 p. 206/29-30 p. 206/31-33

p. 210/9-10 p. 211/30-31 p. 211/35-36

What is real is the individual; and this individual, though one and the same, has internal differences. You may hence regard it in two opposite ways. So far as it is one against other individuals, it is particular. So far as it is the same throughout its diversity, it is universal. They are two distinctions we are making within it.]: Yes. [An individual which is finite or relative turns out in the end to be no individual; individual and infinite are inseparable characters.]: This is right, so no individual is finite. The ‘this’ is the absolute individual. [Nothing will fall outside the subject, and the predication will be categorical.]: God, or the universe, no doubt. [In the end all truth, if really true, is true of the ultimate non-phenomenal fact.]: Indeed? [the Universe itself] u/l: And what is that, pray? [… everything conceivable has existence in some sense.] noted. [We have now discussed the meanings of ‘possible’ and ‘necessary,’ so far as to see that both are forms of the hypothetical.] bottom of the page: Necessity comes into being in the act of abstraction. It exists as such—i.e. as an abstraction exists. But an abstraction, which depends on image, can have no counterpart in reality (i.e. as opposed to imagination). [Facts for logic must be facts that are and that never must be.]: This is right. [When the possible becomes real it ceases at once to be a mere possibility.] u/l: Yes. [… the possible … can not exist outside the domain of human doubt and human ignorance.]: Inadequate. [We have seen that to say ‘S — P is possible,’ means, ‘S — P would follow under certain conditions, some at least of which are not known to be present.’]: But the conditions not known to be present are simply presence. [Apart from the judgment the real is mere fact and has no potentiality …] u/l: Not so. The abstract is given. [But now what is this real or, I should say, these reals …] u/l: You should say ‘are these reals’. [Are they real things, as distinct from sensations, or, if not, what are they?]: What is this distinction? What is a ‘sensa-


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p. 214/6-11 p. 214/15-17

p. 214/23-24 p. 214/25-28

p. 228/18-19 p. 228/37-39 p. 230/24-25 p. 238/n.19

p. 240/n.31 p. 243/16-18 p. 254/14 p. 272/n.1


tion’? [… the mental presence of the real …]: Why mental? This simply means the real as present in experience. [… the base of our assertion that X is not rejected by the real, is the assumption that the real differs in no point from the real as at this moment it is present.]: Why is this an assumption? The real is what is present. [… what we have in our minds is co-extensive with reality.]: If this simply means ‘What is present is … reality’, then it is correct. [What the real does not exclude is not possible, it is actual and necessary. And if we shrink from this assertion, ought we to maintain that X is even possible?]: We do not shrink from it, but we refer to p. 240/2-3. [An infinite series is of course not possible. It is self-contradictory; it could not be real.]: This assumes that it does not accelerate. [Outside mathematics an infinite number is an idea that attempts to solder elements which are absolutely discrepant.]: Yes. [Now take the whole series. That series, before I throw it, is as certain and fixed as though I had thrown it already.]: Is it? [The possible, as the partly grounded, is negative of a limited known reality, in the sense that not all of the possible is there. A fact falls beyond and is actual only in another world.]: Certainly—it is the absent of ‘this’. [… alternative possibilities (r1, r2, r3) are all possible, though they can not all at once simply qualify our limited reality. Thus the possible and the actual may or may not exclude one another.] ‘they can not … reality’ u/l: This seems to be a mistake. [… a vicious identification of the real, as it is, with the real as we find it now mentally present …]: But what is the real ‘as it is’? [I do not indeed know, after my first Book, if at this stage I have any actual reader …]: Yes, you still have me. [… naked positions in space or time …] u/l: There are no such things. [We have, first, the knowledge that everything falls within


p. 286/21-22 p. 287/5-6 p. 288/35-36 p. 288/36-40

p. 289/fn.

p. 290/1-2 p. 290/5-6 p. 293/8-10

p. 293/13 p. 294/6-9

and qualifies one individual Universe.]: No. [We next, in any particular case, have to do also with some subordinate individual whole.] ‘next’ c/o: Yes. [Likeness and sameness should never be confused, for the former refers properly to a general impression.]: Quite. [… I am waiting, and have been waiting for years, to be told what is meant by an ‘exact likeness.’]: Very good! [… if we say that inference rests on the principle that what seems the same is the same …] after ‘the same is’: so far after ‘the same is the same’: Yes. [… the same is the same, and can not be made different by any diversity, and that so long as an ideal content is identical no change of content can destroy its unity. The assumption in this principle may be decried as monstrous …] ‘The assumption … monstrous’ u/l: Only if it is not seen that experience is an absolute system. Far from being monstrous, it is necessary. [Not only, for instance, must spaces related be more than a mere relation in space, but they must also have a difference in quality.]: This takes space as featureless, which it is not. But if it were this would be correct. [It is not possible to contemplate points in relation unless you distinguish them by a qualitative reference to the right or left or upper or lower sides of your body … It may be objected that in certain cases the difference of quality is only one aspect of the whole relation. … The ultimate connection of quality and relation is a most difficult problem.] last sentence noted: Only because of the false assumption noted above. [… the content of the given has always two sides, sensible qualities and relations …]: Cittasaπkhåra and cetanå. [I do not say that these two elements are metaphysically irreducible …]: They are. [It sounds terrible to say that Identity is an ideal synthesis of differences, and that this identity is real fact.]: This is the quite unnecessary distinction that constitutes ‘Idealism’. [… the change that is past is no fact of sense.] u/l: On what ground? [It is frivolous to say that identity may be real, where exist-


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ence is continuous and is not broken in the series of time, but is not real anywhere else] ‘is not … time’ u/l: This is a contradiction. p. 297/n.2 [On the ultimate difficulty as to Identity …]: There is none. p. 297/n.4 [… Immediate Experience or Feeling must not be called ‘given.’]: This is a mistake due to B’s wrong notions about time. Sartre is right to say that a thing’s significance is given with the thing (in his booklet on Camus’ L’Étranger). [ultimate whole] u/l: What is this? p. 297/n.5 [What is true of B once is true of B always under the same conditions.]: This is a contradiction. If it were true it would mean that a difference in time (once/always) is not a difference in conditions. But difference in time is change even if only of orientation (at any level), so either once = always or conditions are different. [We have to assume a concrete whole containing still further conditions such as to modify these terms and to unite them in something higher. But in this whole, we must remember, conditions and terms cease in the end, as such, to exist.]: This is Bradley’s deism. p. 298/n.9 [If you keep to change as perceived, then within that perception you have identity in diversity, and you have ideality …] ‘and you have ideality’ u/l: Only if you are an Idealist. [On the relation of Continuity to identity …]: ‘Continuity’ is a self-contradiction, as you yourself tacitly admit on p. 153. You do not openly admit it since you accept it as valid of time. p. 299/15-16 [The psychological fact of ‘Association’ is of course unquestionable.]: It is, in spite of Sartre. p. 304/23-305/23 [… The main Law of Reproduction may be laid down thus; Any part of a single state of mind tends, if reproduced, to re-instate the remainder; or Any element tends to reproduce those elements with which it has termed one state of mind. This may be called the law of Redintegration. For we may take this name from Sir W. Hamilton (Reid, p. 897), having found nothing else that we could well take. … What is a single state of mind? Does it exclude succession? It certainly does not do so. It may be further defined as any psychical complex which is present together, presence signifying presentation, a certain direct relation to the



mind which does not imply succession in time. … This law of Redintegration, we must bear in mind, does not exclude any succession of events which comes as a whole before the mind; and it is not to be confined to perceptions and ideas.]: All this seems to be in order. p. 305/31-32 [But Redintegration … never re-instates the particular fact.]: This would seem to depend on whether one considers the reproduced state as the same thing as the original or not. p. 305/39-40 [… universals, which as such do not exist.] u/l: But at the foot of p. 45 you argue that particulars do not exist. You must make up your mind about existence. p. 307/1-8 [The doctrine of Redintegration does not ask us to subscribe to the belief that what is past exists over again. … The fact of the presentation absolutely disappears. What is left behind is a mental result, into the ultimate metaphysical nature of which we do not here enquire.] ‘The fact … enquire’ noted: All that has happened is that the present has become absent. This is not so good. As the present can change, so can the absent. p. 340/6-10 [And to those who are not prepared for metaphysical enquiry, who feel no call towards thankless hours of fruitless labour, who do not care to risk a waste of their lives on what the world for the most part regards as lunacy, and they themselves but half believe in …]: Good. p. 341/18-342/7 [The psychologist is to confine himself within certain limits; he is not to cross over into metaphysics. But unfortunately if he is not a metaphysician he will not know what these limits are. And it is the same to some extent with all the sciences. The physicist, for instance, is constantly tempted to think that his ruling ideas are ultimate facts. And this temptation is fatal to the mere specialist. It is only, on the one hand, a general culture and largeness of mind, or else some education in metaphysics, which saves him from this error. And it is much worse in psychology. The subject brings with it a special temptation; …]: This is a pleasant paragraph. p. 344/12-16 [Suppose we all are victimized by chance conjunction, are we not right to be so victimized?]: We are victimized by a chance conjunction in being born. p. 345/23-25 [… visual sensations without extension are the merest hy-


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pothesis. Not only can this alleged fact not be observed, but there are very strong reasons for rejecting it wholly.]: It is to be rejected in practice since the eye is a muscular organ. But in principle it is not necessary to reject it. Sounds are much less tied to extension. p. 346/n.4 [The doctrine that every mental state still survives and is active below the conscious level, was, and is, as a working hypothesis, not to be treated with contempt.]: But if they survive they are universals. p. 347/n.19 [… the incoming stimulus.] u/l: This is a wholly objectionable expression: it belongs to physiology. p. 351/9-14 [The facts, I should have thought, would have left little doubt that the result of experience is a connection of attributes, where the differences of their particular subjects are blurred—a confused universal, which may appear to the mind in a particular imagery, but is used without any regard to that.]: The images (which there must be) may well be confused (i.e. plural) but the universal is not confused. p. 352/22-353/6 [I will conclude with an appeal to common experience. We all know very well that in our daily life we reason habitually from the results of past experience, although we may be wholly unable to give one single particular fact in support of our conclusion. We know again that there are persons, whose memory is so good that they recall past details in a way which to us is quite impossible, and who yet can not draw the conclusions which we draw, since they have never gone beyond the reproduction of these details. It is not the collection of particular facts, it is the general impression one gets from these facts which is really the sine qua non of reasoning; and it is that from which we really go to our result. If you begin the discussion of a question, such as this, with a vicious disfunction, you can not go right. As a preliminary to discussion you have excluded the truth. From the alternative—either an explicit syllogism or an inference from particulars to particulars —you can hardly fail to get a false result. You may infer—The syllogism in extension is no argument, and therefore we go from particulars to particulars. You may infer—It is not possible to agree from particulars, and therefore we reason always in syllogisms,



p. 369/5-7 p. 385/11-15 p. 395/14-16 p. 428/23-29

p. 444/8-10 p. 445/32-35

p. 449/10-13

p. 459/16-40

explicit and (if you like) also extensional. But to me it is nothing which conclusion you adopt. For both are errors, and both at bottom are one and the same error. They are twin branches from one root of inveterate prejudice and false assumption.]: A good observation. [… the group is taken as a region within which a universal connection holds throughout. Hence, and hence alone, we can use such expressions as ‘any’ and ‘one case with.’]: Yes. [Contradictory possibilities can co-exist as long as they remain mere possibilities, but the moment you affirm them as actual fact, they exclude one another.]: Yes. [It may be denied that, when water is hot to one hand and cold to the other, the mistake that exists is a fallacy of inference.]: But what is the mistake? [… every judgment is really an inference … But we can hardly add that, with so much, the inference is specified as disjunctive.] This is Husserl’s ‘Factual Necessity’: ‘It must be so because it is so.’ [We might explain perhaps every phenomenon offered, on the view that reproduction is always logical.]: It is. [Yet somewhere we find a solution of continuity; somewhere the identity of the datum is lost; at some point we pass from the adjectival content attributed to our basis, and slide into on image which is not its predicate.]: On this solution of continuity see Sartre, L’Imaginaire, pp. 151-2. [We may, however, remark that even ‘uncontrolled’ fancy brings an object before us, and so far is ‘objective.’ And imagination, when ‘controlled’ in a certain way, becomes at once strictly logical and is itself the same as ‘thought.’]: Yes. For a detailed description see Sartre, L’Imaginaire (Image at Pensée). [But is it so too with Distinction? Take for instance, ‘A is not equal to B,’ and where is the third term? I answer, It is there, though we do not perceive it. For consider the case thus; A and B, it is certain, are still related, since they are taken as different; and their difference is not abstract but specific and definite. It is as quantities that we fail to find them identical. But, this being grasped, observe what follows. Just as the general perception of difference implies a mind which distinguishes, and which serves in


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p. 462/23-26 p. 468/31-39

p. 471/28-29 p. 472/6-14


some vague character as the base which supports that general relation—so it is with every special difference. What is true in general will prove true in particular. All objects of our thought in the first place must have some relation because, as our objects, they are all identical; and again every distinction of special qualities, such as sounds or colours, takes place on the basis of a special community. … A and B are perceived to be unequal, but inequality presupposes that both have quantity. In this they are the same, and it is because of this point that they can be seen as unequal. Thus identity in regard to the possession of quantity is here the third term that was required, and it is relation to this centre which interrelates the quantitative differences.]: Very good. [No change can be perceived unless by means of an ideal continuity. This ideal identity is a necessary element in the perception of difference.] each ‘ideal’ u/l: Not only ideal! [The immediate experience of change and difference, or a succession of such mere feelings, would not by itself generate the relational perception which follows. But it leaves behind it what we may call a tendency in the mind to move hereafter, under certain conditions, in a certain way. … However, I once more agree, the detail of the process by which we pass from Feeling to relational consciousness is open to question. In any case mere ‘after-sensation’ … could not possibly by itself account for this passage.]: This is inadequate, but the final sentence is quite correct. [But in synthesis we find that … the whole is not given any longer, but is made.] altered to read: … not given as a datum any longer, but itself depends on the inference. [Thus it is analysis where your conclusion falls within the boundary of your original premise; but it is synthesis where the conclusion falls beyond each premise and transcends its limits. Analysis is the inward synthesis of a datum, in which its unseen internal elements become explicit. Synthesis is the analysis of a latent whole beyond the datum, in which the datum becomes explicit as a constituent element, bound by interrelation to one or more elements likewise constituent.] ‘Analysis is … likewise constituent’ noted, and the page as


p. 476/29-32

p. 477/fn.

p. 478/7-9 p. 478/9-28

p. 478/18-20 p. 478/21-35

a whole marked: All that is good. [Let us imagine a judgement before any reproduction has taken place. Certainly no such judgment could exist, since judgment proper appears long after redintegration has been used, and is a consequence of that use …]: Yes. [When, for example, we argue that without a Permanent no change could be experienced, we should remember that on the other side it may be urged that, unless this Permanent were itself phenomenal, it could not be effective, and that the fact of there being something stable in phenomena seems deducible from no principle.]: This, of course, is right; but it is a mistake to suppose that there could be any principle antecedent to this factual necessity. [Assume, as we must, that our intellect … has no intelligible ground for many of the events which it is forced to register.] after ‘has’ is inserted: for itself. [Recognize the fact that more chance strength of stimulus, blind emphasis of sense, is the reason why our perception was thus and was not otherwise. Acknowledge, in the end, that whatever intellectual assimilation by affinity you may fairly suppose to have worked unconsciously—yet at last the effective condition of the judgment is found in more sensuous depression and relief; that it was by this that a part of the presentation was sunk, and the rest loft standing in a prominent conjunction.]: All first class. [But, I repeat, all this is nothing to the purpose; we here have got the sine qua non, but we have got nothing else.] altered to read: … but we have got, so far, no more. [The intellect in judgment may be guided and led by irrational suggestions, and yet that judgment after all may be an intellectual act. For the sensuous emphasis which prompts and directs disappears in the result, and, however the mind has come to its judgment, after all it has judged. The selection and relation, which appears in the product, is not the mere blurring and accentuation of sense. It may have been influenced by it, and arisen from it, but its essence is now diverse. Bare difference is one thing and distinction is another; solicitation and tempting prominence are still not recognition; and we may be forced to notice, but after all we notice. Judgment is our act; and the separation and


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p. 479/7-9 p. 480/26 p. 481/35 p. 482/35-39

p. 484/17-21

p. 484/25-28

p. 484/38-39 p. 485/8-13

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integration, which appear in its content, are the work of our own analysis and synthesis, compelled, if you will, but none the less active.] noted, and the first sentence double noted: Yes. [All judgment necessarily contains a relation; but every relation, beside its pair of related elements, presupposes an unity in which they subsist.]: Certainly. [The evolution of the mind …] u/l: The ‘evolution of the mind’ is absolutely inadmissible unless it is confined to one individual’s development from childhood. [If we begin our enquiry from the physiological side …] u/l: This is quite illegitimate. [But it is intellectual in the sense that, when we come to reflect on its datum, we find marks of activities, which, if they had been conscious, and if they had not stopped at feeling, we must have called intellect.]: the usage in this work of the words feeling, sensation, perception and consciousness, is unintelligible. [No physiologist would believe that colours or sounds were the properties of those stimuli which act on the centres of vision or hearing. But, if so, by what process are we to remove the influence of the subject in knowledge?]: Physiologists are capable of believing all sorts of strange things. This is a bogus question. [We have seen that this demands a central identity, and where is the central identity here? But, without it, what becomes of the relation of the premises and of the ensuing result?]: So is this. [… reproduction implies a rudiment of judgment …]: No. [It will be objected no doubt that in abcd there perhaps may be no rudiment of judgment; that there may exist in this foundation no intellectual act, no unconscious selection, or notice, or preferential attention to b — d; and that in short there may be nothing but sensuous strength and prominence of b and d.]: Right. [And thus the purification of b — d is an intellectual act, performed as part of the reproduction. It shows clearly that function of selective analysis which belongs to judgment and to inference alike.]: Also right. [The point here is that, without some stability in the con-


p. 502/20-32

p. 504/fn. p. 505/8-11

p. 536/6-8

p. 539/fn.

tent of what comes in Feeling and Sensation, no orderly world would be possible. For order could not be simply super-induced by or from any mere abstract principle or function.]: Quite. But how does the idea of an ‘orderly world’ square with Idealism? [… the earliest intelligence … is scarcely to be recognized; for it lacks, as we saw, the chief marks of intellect. It can not judge, for it has no ideas. It can not distinguish its images from fact … it can not reason … It would not be aware of on ideal activity, but would blindly accept the transformation of an object. … As perceived by the downing reason, the object itself is unable to change; … such a process is too hard for nascent intelligence.]: All this is highly questionable. [… I do not feel at liberty to assume that psychical life does not precede the development of nerves.]: Quite right—you are not. [The so-called ‘muscular sense’ appears to be as doubtful an article in physiology as it is in psychology, and in these pages we are compelled to avoid it wholly.]: Sartre agrees. [We should ask in vain for any harmonious finding as to the bodily process which conditions my feeling of energy put forth.]: This question presupposes that it is caused by the body. [Hence we see that a cause demands previous change. It can not exist without producing its effect, so that, if the effect is to have a beginning, the cause must have a beginning also. To produce the effect it becomes the cause; and that becoming is a change in time, which naturally calls for another cause by which to account for it. Hence first cause is pure nonsense. Again the effect is the change which issues from the union of the conditions. It is a passing event, and it is only by a licence that we allow ourselves to treat it as a permanent product. Being a phenomenon in time it can not persist. Once more the effect must follow the constitution of the cause; it can not begin until after the moment when the synthesis is complete. It is impossible it should ever co-exist with its cause, and the belief that it does so arises from con-


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p. 555/4-6

p. 577/24-28 p. 577/29-32

p. 579/26-27 p. 581/11-12 p. 583/18-21 p. 584/18-19


fusion. For we forget that both cause and effect are events, and we tend to think of them as substances maintaining an identity in spite of events. But, though the effect succeeds, it succeeds immediately. Causation is really the ideal reconstruction of a continuous process of change in time. Between the coming together of the separate conditions and the beginning of the process, is no halt or interval. Cause and effect are not divided by time in the sense of duration or lapse or interspace. They are separated in time by an ideal line which we drew across the indivisible process. For if the cause remained for the fraction of a second, it might remain through an indefinite future. Permanent cause, unless you take cause in another meaning and treat it as substance, is simply nonsensical. I should be glad to discuss some of the difficulties which arise in connection with causation, but the questions raised would hardly be logical.]: This will not do at all. We have here once again Bradley’s mistaken notions of time. ‘Continuous change’ is a self-contradiction. [Whether rightly or wrongly, all logic assumes that a mere attention, a simple retaining and holding together before the mind’s eye, is not an alteration.]: Attention alters weight or emphasis, but this does not alter relations. [… an ‘otherwise’ that alters is an admissible idea.]: This is quite right. [But obviously, where our A is taken as ultimate Reality, the suggestion of an ‘otherwise’ becomes quite untenable. An ‘otherwise than A,’ whether as a contrary or as an alteration, is here, alike in either case, no idea at all, but is wholly senseless.]: And this is quite wrong—there is no ‘ultimate Reality’ behind appearances. [Is the intellectual experiment the parallel of a movement in the real universe?]: It is a movement in the real (universe). [How frivolous an idea, but how inevitable; and yet once more how wholly indefensible.]: And how elegantly put! [Unless you revolutionize your belief about reality … you cannot maintain the strict correspondence of thoughts and of things.]: But thoughts are things. [But ideas do not exist, and they can not exist, if existence means presence in the series of phenomena.] ‘the series of


phenomena’ u/l: Again, this is a mistake. p. 584/21-22 [I do not mean that ideas, being inside my head, can not also and at once be found outside it.]: Again, all we have ‘in our heads’ is brains, or perhaps a headache. But not ideas. p. 591/1-2 [… a lingering scruple still forbids us to believe that reality can ever be purely rational.]: It is not. p. 591/6-7 [That the glory of this world in the end is appearance leaves the world more glorious …] ‘is appearance’ u/l: It is not appearance as opposed to Reality. p. 519/8-10 [… but the sensuous curtain is a deception and a cheat, if it hides some colourless movement of atoms …] ‘it hides’ u/l: It does not hide anything. p. 592/n.5 [As, however, there is verifiable activity on our side, we can hardly get rid of the problem by leaving the presence of activity on the other side doubtful. The true answer is that there is one joint activity on both sides.]: This is right. p. 594/n.15 [Now an idea, as an idea, in not an event …]: The notion of ‘event’ is vicious. An ‘event’ can only be a change, never a thing. There cannot be a continuous sequence of ‘events’. p. 599/38-40 [The general solution of the problem raised by the essence of inference is found, I think, so far as logic is concerned, in the double nature of the object.] ‘in … object’ u/l: Yes—as dhamma & saπkhårå. p. 600/5-7 [… the object not only is itself, but is also contained as an element in a whole; and it is itself, we must add, only as being so contained.]: Good. p. 600/14-15 [… that which mediates and necessitates its advance is implied within its own self.]: Yes. p. 606/10-20 [There is … a whole … which in every case is presupposed. Are we to say then that this whole already contains every possible arrangement and succession of arrangements, so that the conclusion of our inference both is and was? Shall we on the contrary, denying this, hold that space and time alter, so that, when our construction in fact happens and is there, our conclusion, then and on this, becomes true and real? Or shall we, thirdly, attempt to maintain both theses at once, though how to bring them together without contradiction we do not know?]: Both, I think, and they can be brought together. p. 606/40-607/1 [… the known nature of space and time …] u/l: This is


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certainly not generally known. p. 607/1-4 [I may add that to any one who, like myself, holds that the nature of both space and time, as such, involves selfcontradiction, the above conclusion is even obvious.]: This is Bradley’s Idealistic dilemma. The accepted view of s and t certainly involves self-contradiction. See NoD. p. 615/16-18 [Since the real whole works in and through myself, its activity and mine are thus one.]: Attå ca loko ca. p. 625/21-25 [… what is false is the conclusion that the unknown conditions of body and mind do not belong to the special object which my judgment asserts.]: Quite. p. 629/33-39 [This two-fold nature of Reality, by which it slides away from itself into our distinction, so as there to become a predicate—while all the time it retains in itself, as an ultimate subject, every quality which we loosen from and relate to it—is, if you please, inexplicable. But none the less, I must insist, it is a fundamental fact, the ignoring of which brings certain ruin to any theory of judgment.]: This is comprehensible in the light of the reflexive reduplication. (NoD—attå (a)) p. 631/35-36 [Further, ideas and judgments, when I reflect, are known and recognized by me as things which exist in my head.]: ‘things … head’ u/l: They are not. p. 632/17-21 [Hence, unless the Universe itself is a disconnected conjunction, separable at pleasure, and itself really grouping itself into limited conjunctions at our will—judgment fails to take in connections and conditions apart from which its truth is not true.] ‘disconnected conjunction’ u/l: ‘Une totalité détotalisée.’ p. 632/36-634/3 : This is very good. p. 632/36-633/1 [Not only is all judgment conditioned, not only does it involve a ‘because,’ but, in addition, every judgment is conditional and implies and depends on an ‘if.’] ‘conditioned’ u/l: Saπkhata—‘determined’. p. 633/7-8 [The question ‘What is because?’ asks (I understand) about the nature of a ‘ground.’] ‘ground’ u/l: loka. p. 633/10-21 [Hence on one side … there can not conceivably be a ground and ‘because’ which is merely external. If the ground is not implied and so intrinsic, it, as a ground, has no meaning. On the other side, unless the ground is beyond, it, once



more and no less, is meaningless. And for anything to imply merely itself is, to my mind, nonsense. The result of the above … is that the ground in a whole, in which the thing to be grounded must be included. It is a whole pervaded essentially by connection and implication, and is, in some sense, a system which throughout justifies its contents.]: Yes. p. 633/24-31 [If this is the ‘ground,’ what then (we have next to enquire) is a ‘condition’? A condition appears (we must reply) to be a partial ground. Where anything is included in a whole which is its ground, there any other part of the ground, beyond this thing itself, is called its condition. And this element will be one among our thing’s many conditions, unless at least we can assume or show that no further element is contained in the ground.] first ‘condition’ u/l: Saπkhåra—a ‘determination’. p. 633/32-634/3 [Hence the ‘because’ of anything may be called that by which it is conditioned. Its full ‘because’ implies the presence of the entire whole of its conditions, and includes in this whole the thing’s own nature, so for as grounded. This, and no less than this, is the true and real ‘because.’ But we can use ‘because’ again in a less complete sense where we take the thing as conditioned partly. Here we single out and refer merely to one selected element, one part of the whole of those connections which one involved in the ground. Such an imperfect use of ‘because’ is unavoidable and necessary in practice, but, indefensible in the end, it is even in practice a constant source of grave and insidious error. p. 634/4-12 [In proceeding from the above to ask next for the meaning of ‘if,’ we may be said, leaving the conditioned, to pass on to that which is merely conditional. The first of these gave us a judgment which actually is mediated. S here is P because of M. We had, in other words (we saw), a whole which includes and supports and guarantees at once S and P and also their actual junction. This is what is implied, and this is what we should mean when we call a judgment conditioned.]:The point is that a thing’s determinations are its significances or possibilities, and it may become one (and in Judgement it does become one, but in imagination) of


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p. 650/3-4

p. 652/5-12

p. 654/19-21 p. 655/23-32

p. 655/fn. p. 657/1-14


its possibilities. Cf. Sartre’s ‘circuit de l’ipseité’. [The case of the Universe (to take that first) seems free from doubt.]: ‘The Universe’ as a closed totality is an impossible idea. You cannot ‘take the case of the Universe’ unless you can get outside it. Each universe is a closed totality, and for that very reason there is always more beyond, and no universe is The Universe. If you say ‘all’, it is an open totality that you say; and this means that you can never take it as a whole. See pp. 660-1. [Further, what is given has degree, extensive or intensive or both; and it is tinged again by ‘feeling’ in various senses of that term. And we can neither exhibit these differences each by itself, nor understand how in a given case they unite to make our unique particular. Nor, even with so much, have we reached the end. For the diverse appearances of our quality in space and time seem, I may say, even obviously to belong to it.] ‘For … to it’ noted: Certainly. [And if in change we find also a ‘not-yet,’ we have, with this, a feature which, even apparently, is ideal and transcendent; …]: It is actually transcendent. [On the other hand we may agree that about the ‘this,’ as again about the diversity of qualities, there really is something unique. We have something here at once positive and yet not resolvable wholly into an aspect of ‘such’. But what in the end this ‘something’ is we are unable to say; and, attempting here to advance, we do but turn in a maze of repeated dilemmas. The aspect which we claim to have found we are unable to produce, nor can we show that, if produced, it would not more or less belie a character due to our partial apprehension.]: All this is very good; but the point is that the ‘this’ is a transcendent. [With regard to the limit of the ‘this’ on the side of the future, I find myself now (I may add) for less inclined to admit its fixity.]: Good. [Every finite individual is hence on one side imperfect in a varying degree. … Perfect uniqueness and individuality remain therefore in one sense an ideal. … Every individual is in some sense perfect … and, in its very striving for perfection, it is already, beyond our vision, itself unique and complete.]: At what point does Bradley’s


p. 657/19-23

p. 660/1-2 p. 660/16-27

p. 661/14-17

p. 662/1 p. 663/14-19

p. 663/26-29

p. 663/30-36

mysticism start? [And no true religion, we may add, will seek to justify, whether in this world or in any other world, the perfection of the individual, if taken by himself; nor will it anywhere think to escape from the grace of God and from the life gained only through constant dying.]: And what about the perfection of God? [It is … clear that we have ideas alike of ‘this,’ ‘now,’ ‘my,’ and ‘here’; …]: Ideas? [Everything, to be in any sense real, must hold of the one Reality. And the felt ‘this’ is therefore, so far, the real Universe. On the other side, while the Universe is the ‘this,’ it also is more and beyond, and it contains within itself other ‘thises’ innumerable.]: The Universe can only be ‘this’ against a background of ‘not-this’, which shows the inadequacy of ‘the Universe’ as an ultimate concept—you can only speak of ‘the Universe’ or ‘the one Reality’ if you can get outside it. See p. 650. [But if the reader asks how in the end the one Reality has such a character as to appear in various special diversities—I would once more repeat that to my mind no explanation is possible.]: See remarks on ‘The Universe’ on p. 650. Each universe or reality as a closed totality is a Group (in the mathematical sense), and every Group is a ‘totalité détotalisée’, in Sartre’s phrase. For detail, see NoD—FS. [ESSAY VI]: This is an excellent essay. [… I emphasize one element in my whole while disregarding the residue. But this residual mass, none the less, is there, and is actually experienced. And hence, even at this stage, I am in some sense positively aware of a totality which includes in itself both an aspect emphasized and an aspect ignored.]: Admirable. [Our ‘universe,’ as the conditions vary, brings forward or puts back now this feature and now that, and, according to the conditions, it hence shows itself as ‘either,’ and it is itself one or the other alternative.]: Yes. So also Sartre. [A long road, I agree, separates our first distinction from … a scheme of distinctions where each at once excludes and affirmatively qualifies the rest. But the way is traceable, and its course would show how the ultimate end is present in


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a sense at the start …]: See NoD, FS. p. 665/4-6 [… I have to turn my experience into a disjunctive totality of elements which, according to the conditions, explicitly imply and negate one another.] ‘explicitly … another’ u/l: Yes. p. 665/9-12 [This task, I agree, can never be accomplished in full. But we have seen how in principle it is laid on us from the first, and how negation aids and is essentially implied in all positive construction.]: Yes—see Kierkegaard, CUP. p. 665/32-666/2 [Hence, again, negation is not ‘subjective.’ You may, when it is compared with affirmation, call it, if you please, more ‘reflective’, in the sense that we, perhaps generally, know that we assert, before we know that we deny. But such prior or greater awareness is irrelevant to the point here at issue. The distinctions in our ‘objective’ world do not become merely ‘subjective,’ because we can be said to make them or again because we know that we make them. On the contrary they form the essential structure of that world.] ‘On … world’ u/l: FS. p. 666/17-20 [If you confine your real world to one asserted position and identify this one position with the Universe, then, with this (if it were possible), negation, I admit, has become barely ‘subjective.’] ‘if … possible’ u/l: It is not possible, since there is no ultimate ‘Universe’. p. 666/31-667/40 [Real assertions and denials … are made always with some intention, and never apart from a certain interest. … this ‘reason why’ is a ground which never fails to qualify our original position. … denial affirms throughout an identity and a difference … This diversity affects throughout, in my view, the relation … But, as far as a judgment is purposeless and useless theoretically, it so far, we may say, is not any real judgment. It is either meaningless, and, if so, as a judgment it is nothing, or else its meaning and consequence fall somewhere beyond that knowledge which at the moment we possess. We must hold on to this truth in the case of affirmative judgments, and apply it, certainly with not less strictness, when we deal with negation.]:All this is excellent. p. 667/19-20 [But, if at least we view the Universe as a whole …] u/l: See p. 650. p. 699/27-29 [What you have so far is a ‘real’ which (if you please) may



p. 700/10-13

p. 702/8-9 p. 702/11-37

p. 703/24-25 p. 704/19-27

be said to lie below possibility.]: See p. 706. [… I shall take as an instance here the sphere of things as happening and enduring in time—the region, that is, which often is called the ‘real world’ of Common Sense, and which is better termed ‘existence.’]: The trouble with this is that it seems to imply that only what is in accordance with Common Sense really ‘exists’. It seems unfortunate to link ‘Common Sense’ and ‘existence’, though certainly the ‘world of Common Sense’ is useful—see p. 702. [… the idea that only in ‘existence’ can anything actual be found seems cleanly untenable.]: See p. 700. (If anything can ‘be found’, it must in some sense ‘exist’.) [Far from having but one world we all, I presume, live in worlds many and of diverse kinds. And even to conclude that but one of these worlds is ‘real’ will hardly warrant the result that no other can be actual. On the contrary this distinction of ‘actual’ and ‘possible’ is used habitually within those very worlds which, taken as imaginary, we oppose to ‘existence.’ We speak, for example, of actual and possible occurrences in a novel; and how could this be, if such events were, all alike, merely possible? … There is a valid distinction between that which is absolutely possible and that which, on the other hand, is but possible relatively or possibly … The possible always is partly real, but that reality, which it involves and on which it stands, may either be real absolutely, or, again, may be something less which we take for our purpose as real. Hence the imaginary existence, though merely conditional as against that existence which is absolute and actual, may, by a legitimate abstraction from its conditional character, be used as actual and real. And, by a permissible artifice, this secondary existence may further be taken to serve as itself the ‘actual’ basis of possibilities within itself, and so on indefinitely. Hence in any possible world we can have possibilities to which this world is opposed as actual.]: This is very good. [… if by ‘existence’ we mean the ‘real world’ of fact and event, …]: See p. 700. [Certainly the world of truth is on my view pervaded by inconsistency. It claims on the one hand to be itself actu-


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p. 706/6-11

p. 706/17 p. 707/2-4 p. 707/31-35 p. 716/1-8

p. 716/24-30


ally a grounded system, where every element is there and each is actual. And in such a world the ‘more or less actual or possible’ can hold only with regard to differences in amount of reality. Truths will be more or less dependent, as reigning over and as standing on a less or greater area of the common ground, and as containing, each within itself, less or more of the total system.]: The world of propositions, inhabited by logicians. The mind’s presence [… shows itself again within logic, when, as applied to existence, it is termed Designation or pointing. Employed, as above, to mark and distinguish a point of departure within the world of truth, this felt presence (I would repeat) is no temporal event, nor is it borrowed from what we call Time.]: Is this about the ego? [… the fact of feeling …] u/l: Perhaps Bradley uses ‘feeling’ in the sense of ‘subjectivity’. [… actuality is the mark of an individual, an individual that is at once above more immediacy and, again, superior to any mere grounding.]: God and the Universe? [… we must even be careful as to what we mean if we go on to add that the Universe itself is actual.]: We must indeed! [Practical activity, in the first place, can not consist in a mere sequence of events and in a consequence which simply happens. An alteration of existence is, by itself, clearly not an activity. And practice in the proper sense involves, on my view, an idea which carries itself out into the changed fact, and, by and in that issuing change, so realizes itself. And, apart from the self-realization of an idea, there is not, I contend, any such thing as an experienced activity.]: If this statement is equivalent to Sartre’s (in L’Être et le Néant, p. 556): Si l’acte n’est pas pur mouvement, il doit ce définir per une intention’—then it is correct. ‘Intention’ can be taken as an absence that becomes a presence. This is Bradley’s ‘self-realization of an idea’. [And further, since in practice the idea is felt as in opposition to the existing fact, the subject, which the idea qualifies and to which it belongs, must itself be at once over against the mere fact, and yet actually real. A real world, other then what merely exists, is hence involved in the essence of all practical activity, and something belonging to such a world


p. 717/16-20

p. 718/fn. p. 717/16-32

p. 717/33

p. 718/fn.

is, in practice everywhere, judged to be real.] and [To say that, in every experience of a something ‘not there’ and ‘yet to be,’ I realize to myself that there is a world other than and opposed to the actual fact, and that in this world I knowingly place my idea as real—would to my mind be ridiculous.] and all three passages are indicated by arrows pointing to them originating from the single word (on p. 716, margin): Teleology. [To say that … ridiculous. For no such consciousness as the above belongs necessarily to all judgment, nor can it belong to any judgment if that is taken as below a certain level of reflection. On the other hand judgment actual in its full essence, though not as yet reflective, is a fact which to me is familiar and constant; and it is in this sense of judgment that I have insisted on its necessary presence in practice. And a failure here to keep the right path may in two opposite ways bring disaster. We may deny the implication of any judgment, and perhaps of any idea, in practical activity. Or, on the other side, we may insist on the unfailing presence there of one or both in a form which collides ruinously with the actual fact.] ‘experience of a something “not there” and “yet to be,”’ and ‘below a certain level of reflection’ are both u/l, the entire passage is noted: Yes. [Passing from this point I will now deal briefly with a second mistake. In this it is admitted that idea and judgment are present in all practical activity, but judgment and idea are taken to refer merely to a future event. Their completed issue and result in a consequent fact is that which (according to this view) is affirmed by the judgment. Hence (it may be added) there is no world other than that mere sequence of events in which existence consists. The facts, as they happen, are everywhere the one sole reality, and it is nothing (in any case) but the future fact which is anticipated in practice and so judged to be real.]: Yes. The point is that the future is essentially underdetermined. See NoD, FS. [How far (a) must that which in practice I feel as a ‘nothere,’ be also even felt as a ‘not-yet,’ and a ‘to be hereafter’? It is when this question is answered that we arrive at the further problem—‘How far (b) does and must all that I


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feel in practical activity, itself enter into that which the idea affirms?] noted p. 718/fn. [And both of these aspects at once will now be essential in and to practical activity. Hence, without the affirmed reality of that which, none the less, is to realize itself in the coming ‘hereafter,’ and which yet itself is so qualified actually and now, the essence of our experience as practical will have been missed.]: i.e. as not this. Very good. See NoD, a note on pa†iccasamuppåda §14. p. 719/fn. [For the very meaning of practice is that something, real in another world, is to realize itself in the world of existing events.]: See Sartre and Heidegger. p. 719/fn. [And fasten your eyes on time’s process, and regard the future as something which is merely to come about or to become done—and you have shut out that ideal, emptied of which the future event or action has become worthless, since it now realizes nothing. Remove in short the contradiction, and you have abolished that which makes practice to be itself, as a fact and as a human value.]: Yes—except the contradiction can be accounted for. See FS. p. 720/7-8 [Reality as a bare succession of passing events is itself selfcontradictory; …] u/l: Yes—but Bradley is not able to resolve the self-contradiction (which rests on B’s idea of time). p. 728/bottom : 3.5.1964 p. 126/17-20

p. 170/25-27

Camus, Albert, L’homme révolté, Paris: Gallimard, 1951 [translated as The Rebel by Anthony Bower, London, Hamish Hamilton, 1953] [La pensée de Breton offre d’ailleurs le curieux spectacle d’une pensée occidentale où le principe d’analogie est sans cesse favorisé au détriment des principes d’identité et de contradiction.]40: But read Dirac’s Quantum Mechanics. […, il y a dans Hegel, comme dans toute grande pensée, de quoi corriger Hegel.]41: Il y a donc dans toute grande pensée de quoi corriger Hegel? (Therefore there is in all

40.  ‘Breton’s thinking, besides, presents the curious spectacle of a western thinking where the principle of analogy is constantly favoured to the detriment of the principles of identity and contradiction.’ 41.  ‘…; there is in Hegel, as in all great thought, something with which to correct Hegel.’



p. 210/11-12

p. vii/15-18

p. ix

p. 3/8-24

great thought something with which to correct Hegel?) […: « Je te maudirais si j’arrivais en retard chez les camarades »]42: Prig! Dirac, P.A.M., The Principles of Quantum Mechanics, Oxford University Press, 1958 [The important things in the world appear as the invariants (or more generally the nearly invariants, or quantities with simple transformation properties) of these transformations.]: Leaving out the parenthesis and the word ‘important’ this statement is more or less correct. It must not be forgotten that the things that undergo transformation are themselves invariants of transformations. (A ‘nearly invariant’ is a hopelessly illegitimate creature—to be ‘nearly invariant’ is to be ‘almost a thing’.) : The ingenious system, depending on the principle that black is white, that is set before us in the pages that follow, may well serve to deal with those practical problems for the solution of which it was expressly devised. But to expect that it will be found philosophically satisfying is the height of presumption. We do not ask for common sense—it is not common sense that we are looking for—but we cannot accept dishonesty. A physical experiment is essentially public: it must, in theory at least, be observable by more than one person. If, then, you start by assuming the validity of the experimental method, which does not admit that there is such a thing as a point of view, you cannot thereafter introduce an observer without falling into contradiction. If there is no such thing as an ‘observer’ occurring in the physical experiment, we are entitled, or rather obliged, to ask what is meant by the word. Is it something that occurs only in quantum mechanics? : Classical theory assumes the statistical nature of matter; this is a confusion. Quantum theory assumes the classical assumption, and then assumes an ultimate structure of matter: this is a double confusion. [So long as big and small are merely relative concepts, it is no help to explain the big in

42.  ‘“I would curse you if I came too late to the comrades.”’


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terms of the small. Ii is therefore necessary to modify classical ideas in such a way as to give an absolute meaning to size.] last sentence u/l: If there is absolute smallness, how is magnification possible? When one inch is magnified to two inches (with a lens) is each unit of absolute smallness in the (finite) row of such units that make up the inch, doubled in length? Or are the units doubled in number? Or is there simply more space between them? p. 4/9-23 [… Causality applies only to a system which is left undisturbed. If a system is small, we cannot observe it without producing a serious disturbance…]: How does one discover that causality (or anything else, for that matter) applies to what causes be observed? p. 13 : The principle of superposition is of the greatest importance in phenomenology; but precisely on that account it cannot be introduced into a scientific theory without at once violating the principles of identity and contradiction. In consequence of this, Quantum theory is obliged to fall back, in the last resort, on the principle of analogy. See p. 53. p. 15/16-18 [The justification for the whole scheme depends, apart from internal consistency, on the agreement of the final results with experiment.]: This puts the proposed axioms in a queer light. See p. 310. p. 20/27-p. 21/5 [… we shall use the words ‘conjugate complex’ to refer to numbers and other complex quantities which can be split up into real and pure imaginary parts, and the words ‘conjugate imaginary’ for bra and ket vectors, which cannot…]: Kierkegaard: ‘to think a contradiction is… not an easy matter, it is always connected with great difficulties.’ See p. 57. p. 37/34-36 : How can one introduce the Infinitesimal Calculus into a theory that assumes absolute smallness? p. 53/7-9 [However, for some purposes it is more convenient to replace the abstract quantities by sets of numbers with analogous mathematical properties and to work in terms of these sets of numbers.]: What is the mathematical definition of analogy? p. 310/8-11 [The difficulties, being of a profound character, can be removed only by some drastic change in the foundations of the theory, probably a change as drastic as the passage from



Bohr’s orbit theory to the present quantum mechanics.]: ‘… it is ridiculous to treat everything as if the System were complete, and then to say at the end, that the conclusion is lacking. If the conclusion is lacking at the end, it is also lacking in the beginning, and this should therefore have been said in the beginning. A house may be spoken of as finished even if it lacks s minor detail, s bell-pull or the like; but in s scientific structure the absence of the conclusion has retroactive power to make the beginning doubtful and hypothetical, which is to say: unsystematic.’—S. Kierkegaard, CUP, pp. 16-17 Heidegger, Martin, Being and Time, Harper & Row, 1962 [a translation by John Macquarrie and Edward Robinson of Sein und Zeit, seventh edition, Tübingen, Neomarius Verlag, 1953] Inside the front cover Ven. Ñå~av⁄ra Thera has inscribed the passage from Camus’ Le Mythe de Sisyphe quoted (in English translation) in L 40 [13.ii.64] and L 151 [8.v.65]. p. 17/13-14 [Einführung in die Metaphysik] u/l: This book gets fairly rough handling by Jean Wahl (Professeur à la Sorbonne) in his study of it, entitled Vers la fin de l’ontologie (SEDES, Paris, 1956). Heidegger is right, in that there is more of a problem of Being than Wahl will admit; but s he goes too far, in that he takes Being as a Good Thing. It is necessary to account for the difference between ‘I am’ (or ‘he is’) and ‘it is’, and Being and Time does not quite succeed, and does in fact ‘volatilize the core of Dasein’ (see p. 153). But Heidegger’s latter efforts (as in this Einführung in die Metaphysik) still fail to account for the apparently ‘eternal’ element in Being (which, for Heidegger, is essentially temporal). Cf. M. Wyschogrod, Kierkegaard and Heidegger (London: Kegan Paul, 1954). Where Sartre disagrees with Heidegger (see L’Être et le Néant), Heidegger’s view is nearly always to be preferred. p. 32/21-33/3 [Here “Being-ontological” is not yet tantamount to “developing an ontology”. So if we should reserve the term “ontology” for that theoretical inquiry which is explicitly devoted to the meaning of entitles, then what we have had in mind in speaking of Dasein’s “Being-ontological” is to


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p. 33/22 p. 34/13-19

p. 34/39-40 p. 63/2

be designated as something “pre-ontological”. It does not signify simply “being-ontical”, however, but rather “being in such a way that one has an understanding of Being”. That kind of Being towards which Dasein can comport itself in one way or another, and always does comport itself somehow, we call “existence”. And because we cannot define Dasein’s essence by citing a “what” of the kind that pertains to a subject-matter, and because its essence lies rather in the fact that in each case it has its Being to be, and has it as its own, we have chosen to designate this entity as “Dasein”, a term which is purely an expression of its Being.]: Dasein is potentially reflexive—pre-reflexive. See NoD, SN, dhamma (b). [exist] u/l. [But the roots of the existential analytic, on its part, are ultimately existentiell, that is, ontical. Only if the inquiry of philosophical research is itself seized upon in an existentiell manner as a possibility of the Being of each existing Dasein, does it become at all possible to disclose the existentiality of existence and to undertake an adequately founded ontological problematic]: A double reflexion. [… a vicious subjectivizing of the totality of entities.]: (Idealism) [Higher than actuality stands possibility.]: Cf. Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 282 sq.43

43.  Aristotle remarks in his Poetics that poetry is higher than history, because history merely tells us what has happened, while poetry tells us what might have happened and ought to have happened, i.e. poetry commands the possible. From the poetic and intellectual standpoint, possibility is higher than reality, the aesthetic and the intellectual being disinterested. There is only one interest, the interest in existence; disinterestedness is therefore an expression for indifference to reality. This indifference is forgotten in the Cartesian cogito ergo sum, which infects a disturbing element into the disinterestedness of the intellectual and affronts speculative thought, as if it were instrumental to something else. I think, ergo I think; but whether I exist or it exists in the sense of an actuality, so that “I” means an individually existing human being and “it” means a definite particular something, is a matter of infinite indifference. That the content of my thought exists in the conceptual sense needs no proof, or needs no argument to prove it, since it is proved by my thinking it. But as soon as I proceed to impose a teleology upon my thought, and bring it into relation with something else, interest begins to play a role in the matter. The instant this happens the ethical is present, and absolves me from any further responsibility in proving my own existence. It forbids me to draw



p. 86/27-28

[It would be unintelligible for Being-in-the-world to remain totally veiled from view,] ‘to remain’ u/l: i.e. that [it] should remain (?) p. 97/n.1/7-10 concerning the term Zeug, which has no precise English equivalent, [For the most part H. uses the term as a collective noun, so that he can say that there is no such thing as ‘an equipment’; but he still uses it occasionally with an indefinite article to refer to some specific tool or instrument—some item or bit of equipment.]: utensil. p. 101/14-31 concerning utensils (p. 97), [The kind of being which belongs to these entities is readiness-to-hand. But this characteristic is not to be understood as merely a way of taking them, as if we were talking such ‘aspects’ into the ‘entities’ which we proximally encounter, or as if some world-stuff which is proximally present-at-hand in itself were ‘given subjective colouring’ in this way. Such an Interpretation would overlook the fact that in this case these entities would have to be understood and discovered beforehand as something purely present-at-hand,… To lay bare what is just present-at-hand and no more, cognition must first penetrate beyond what is-ready-to-hand in our concern. Readiness-to-hand is the way in which entities as they are ‘in themselves’ are defined ontologico-categorially. Yet only by reason of something present-at-hand, ‘is there’ anything ready-to-hand. Does it follow, however, granting this thesis for the nonce, that readiness-to-hand is ontologically founded upon presenceat-hand?]: Present-to-hand entities are, each absolutely and alone. Immediate intention, taking any one, posits (as it were) [see (a), next page] that there is ‘another’—and hence ‘others’ (see NoD, FS). The others, being there already, now appear as others—i.e. appear in relation to the present entity as absent entities. At the same time, now that they all appear ‘together’, preference takes place, raising the pleasant absents and lowering the unpleasant. The whole is new a ready-to-hand entity. Further intention (in depth) spreads this scheme horizontally, and a hierarchy of (closed) worlds of ready-to-hand entities then appears. But intention is a conclusion that is ethically deceitful and metaphysically unclear, by imposing upon me the duty of existing.


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equiprimordial with present-to-hand entities in so far as they are. (a) More precisely: to say of a present-to-hand entity that it is, is simply to say that it is present; which is also to say that there is consciousness of it. But consciousness, being at two removes from matter (perception and feeling are at one remove)—see NoD, SN, r¨pa (c)—, ipso facto generates a lateral vacancy for other matter. A further remove from the original matter fills this vacancy. Intention is simply the relation between the other (or absent) and the this (or present). In so far, then, (to answer H’s question) as the present-to-hand is present it is the ontological foundation of readiness-to-hand. All consciousness (or presence) entails intention (or in-order-to). p. 114/8-9 [Reference is not an ontical characteristic of something ready-to-hand.] u/l: In which case reference would be confined to some only (i.e. signs) of the ready-to-hand. p. 119/14-34 [Dasein always assigns itself from a “for-the-sake-of-which” to the “with-which” of an involvement; that is to say, to the extent that it is, it always lets entities be encountered as ready-to-hand. That wherein Dasein understands itself beforehand in the mode of assigning itself is that for which it has let entities be encountered beforehand. The “wherein” of an act of understanding which assigns or refers itself, is that for which one lets entities be encountered in the kind of Being that belongs to involvements; and this “wherein” is the phenomenon of the world. And the structure of that to which Dasein assigns itself is what makes up the worldhood of the world…] noted. p. 124/11 and 16 [shapes] and [Shape] u/l: Gestalt. p. 138/n.2 noted: De-severance fixes the perspective or point of view; directionality fixes the organization or arrangement of things amongst themselves (regardless of point of view)— l’agencement des choses-ustensiles en choses-ustensiles (weightage or distance within the perspective). For de-sever, perhaps de-ploy (display, unfold) might be better. p. 145/30-36 [With anything encountered as ready-to-hand there is always an involvement in a region. To the totality of involvements which makes up the Being of the ready-to-hand within-theworld, there belongs a spatial involvement which has the



p. 147/3 p. 150/15 p. 150/17 p. 152/36 p. 153/1 p. 153/4-9

p. 165/27 p. 171/5-16

character of a region. By reason of such an involvement, the ready-to-hand becomes something which we can come across and ascertain as having form and direction.] noted. [shapes] u/l: Gestalt. [The answer to the question of who Dasein is,]: The mistake is to ask the question. [constantly] u/l: absolutely. [constancy] u/l: absoluteness. [‘failure to stand by itself’] u/l: ‘non-absoluteness’. See p. 369. [But if the Self is conceived ‘only’ as a way of Being of this entity, this seems tantamount to volatilizing the real ‘core’ of Dasein. Any apprehensiveness however which one may have about this gets its nourishment from the perverse assumption that the entity in question has at bottom the kind of Being which belongs to something present-at-hand, even if one is far from attributing to it the solidity of an occurrent corporeal Thing.]: Yes—but how does this ‘perverse assumption’ arise? And how does it cease? Answer: it arises in asking the question Who? It ceases in seeing that it arises in asking the question Who? [‘them’] u/l: i.e. one. [The entity which is essentially constituted by Being-inthe-world is itself in every case its ‘there’. According to the familiar signification of the word, the ‘there’ points to a ‘here’ and a ‘yonder’. The ‘here’ of an ‘I-here’ is always understood in relation to a ‘yonder’ ready-to-hand, in the sense of a Being towards this ‘yonder’—a Being which is de-severant, directional, and concernful. Dasein’s existential spatiality, which thus determines its ‘location’, is itself grounded in Being-in-the-world. The “yonder” belongs definitely to something encountered within-the-world. ‘Here’ and ‘yonder’ are possible only in a ‘there’—that is to say, only if there is an entity which has made a disclosure of spatiality as the Being of the ‘there’. This entity carries in its ownmost Being the character of not being closed off. In the expression ‘there’ we have in view this essential disclosedness, this entity (Dasein), together with the Beingthere of the world, is ‘there’ for itself.]: For the dependence of ‘here’ (idha) & ‘yonder’ (huraµ) upon ‘there’ (tattha),


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see Udåna i,10.44 p. 173/15 [cognition] u/l: knowing. p. 173/12-17 [Being has become manifest as a burden. Why that should be, one does not know. And Dasein cannot know anything of the sort because the possibilities of disclosure which belong to cognition reach far too short a way compared with the primordial disclosure belonging to moods, in which Dasein is brought before its Being as “there”.]: for H, in other words, bhavata~hå is primordial. There is no escape to be seen. p. 174/6 [in] c/o: as to. p. 174/9-11 [The expression “thrownness” is meant to suggest the facticity of its being delivered over.]: dereliction. p. 175/1 [would] c/o: should. p. 175/12,19,21, and passim [cognition] u/l: ‘knowing’. p. 175/14-16 [When irrationalism, as the counterplay of rationalism, talks about the things to which rationalism is blind, it does so only with a squint.] noted. p. 176/25-34 [But to be affected by the unserviceable, resistant, or threatening character of that which is ready-to-hand, becomes ontologically possible only in so far as Being-in as such has been determined existentially beforehand in such a manner that what it encounters within-the-world can “matter” to it in this way. The fact that this sort of thing can “matter” to it is grounded in one’s state-of-mind; and as a state-ofmind it has already disclosed the world—as something by which it can be threatened, for instance.]: Yadabhinendati taµ bhayaµ (Udåna iii,10 [Ud.33])45 p. 177/4-14 [Under the strongest pressure and resistance, nothing like an affect would come about, and the resistance itself would remain essentially undiscovered, if Being-in-the-world, with its state-of-mind, had not already submitted itself to having entities within-the-world “matter” to it in a way which its moods have outlined in advance. Existentially, a state-of-mind implies a disclosive submission to the world, out of which we can encounter something that matters to us. Indeed from the ontological point of view we must as a 44.  Ud. i,10 is quoted at L 130, 2.vi.65. 45.  Ud. iii,10: When one delights, there is fear.



general principle leave the primary discovery of the world to ‘bare mood’. Pure beholding, even if it were to penetrate to the innermost core of the Being of something presentat-hand, could never discover anything like that which is threatening.]: ‘Bare mood’ is more or less asm⁄ti. (See NoD, SN, phassa (b). Things concern me or matter to me because ‘I am’.—This is the puthujjana’s view.) p. 182/16 [Understanding always has its mood.] u/l: Not with the arahat. p. 194/4-195/27 noted. p. 194/6-9 [All interpretation, moreover, operates in the fore-structure, which we have already characterized. Any interpretation which is to contribute understanding, must already have understood what is to be interpreted.] double noted. p. 195/22-24 [An entity for which, as Being-in-the-world, its Being is itself an issue, has, ontologically, a circular structure.] double noted. p. 207/27-32 [Admittedly, when what the discourse is about is heard ‘naturally’, we can at the same time hear the ‘diction’, a the way in which it is said, but only if there is some counderstanding beforehand of what is said-in-the-talk; for only so is there a possibility of estimating whether the way in which it is said is appropriate to what the discourse is about thematically.]: Cf. Kierkegaard, CUP, pp. 151-2.46 46.  And furthermore, it is evident that when the subject thinks his own death, this is a deed. For a man in general, for an absent-minded individual like Soldin or a systematic philosopher, to think death in general is indeed no act or deed; it is only a something in general, and what such a something in general really is, is at bottom a very difficult thing to say. But if the task of life is to become subjective, then the thought of death is not, for the individual subject, something in general, but is verily a deed. For the development of the subject consists precisely in his active interpenetration of himself by reflection concerning his own existence, so that he really thinks what he thinks through making a reality of it. He does not for example think, for the space of a passing moment: “Now you must attend to this thought every moment”; but he really does attend to it every moment. Here then everything becomes more and more subjective, as is quite natural when the task is to develop the subjectivity of the individual. In so far it might seem as if communication between man and man were abandoned to an unhampered freedom in lying and deception, if anyone so desires; for one need only say: “I have done so and so,” and we can get no further with him. Well, what of it? But suppose he has not really done it? What business is that of mine? Such a deception would be worst for himself. When we speak about something objective it is easier to exercise a control over


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p. 217/6-8

[Curiosity is everywhere and nowhere. This mode of Beingin-the-world reveals a new kind of Being of everyday Dasein—a kind in which Dasein is constantly uprooted.]: The antithesis of Repetition. ‘Whoever wills repetition proves himself to be in possession of a pathos that is serious and mature.’—Kierkegaard, Repetition.47 p. 220/34 [would]: read ‘should’ p. 222/10, 13, 14, 17, 26, 30, and passim, [tranquillity] [tranquillizing] [tranquillization] and [tranquillized] read: complacency, complacification, etc. p. 223/16-19 [Since the understanding is thus constantly torn away from authenticity and into the “they” (though always with a sham of authenticity), the movement of falling is characterized by turbulence.]: A vicious spiral? p. 226/10 [would] c/o: should. p. 228/10-12 [Entities are, quite independently of the experience by which they are disclosed, the acquaintance in which they are discovered, and the grasping in which their nature is ascertained.]: See note, p. 101. p. 250/17-19 [Shrinking back in the face of what fear discloses—in the face of something threatening—is founded upon fear; and this shrinking back has the character of fleeing.] ‘this’ u/l. p. 231/5-13 [That in the face of which one is anxious is completely indefinite. Not only does this indefiniteness leave factically undecided which entity within-the-world is threatening what is said; when, for example, a man says that Frederick the Sixth was an Emperor of China, we answer that this is a lie. But when a man speaks about death, and of how he has thought it and conceived its uncertainty, and so forth, it does not follow that he has really done so. Quite so. But there is a more artistic way of finding out whether he lies or not. Merely let him speak: if he is a deceiver, he will contradict himself precisely when he is engaged in offering the most solemn assurances. The contradiction will not be a direct one, but consists in the failure of the speech to include a consciousness of what the speech professes directly to assert. Objectively the assertion may be quite straight-forward; the man’s only fault is that he speaks by rote. That he also perspires and pounds the table with his fists, is not proof that he does not merely patter; it only goes to show that he is very stupid, or else that he has a secret consciousness that he is guilty of ranting. For it is exceedingly stupid to think that reciting something by rote could properly stir the emotions: since the emotion is the internal, while ranting is something external, like making water… 47.  Kierkegaard’s text is misquoted. It actually reads: ‘Repetition is reality, and it is the seriousness of life. He who wills repetition is matured in seriousness.’



p. 231/13-15

p. 231/35-36

p. 232/1-2 p. 232/8-14

us, but it also tells us that entities within-the-world are not ‘relevant’ at all. Nothing which is ready-to-hand or presentat-hand within the world functions as that in the face of which anxiety is anxious. Here the totality of involvements of the ready-to-hand and the present-at-hand discovered within-the-world, is, as such, of no consequence; it collapses into itself;] noted ‘Nothing … itself’ double noted: This does not (or should not) mean that the ready-to-hand and present-at-hand lose all involvement—see p. 393. [it collapses into itself; the world has the character of completely lacking significance. In anxiety one does not encounter this thing or that thing which, as something threatening, must have an involvement.] ‘the world … significance’ u/l: The general world-determination ‘mine’ or ‘for me’ is undermined in each individual entity within the world.48 Thus the (significant) world, in angst, lacks significance—‘mine’ is ‘not-mine’. In other words ‘I am’ is unjustifiable. What ‘matters’ (what ‘I am’) threatens to be ‘not mattering’ (to be not what ‘I am’) by its possibility of being other. Yena yena hi maññanti tato taµ hoti aññathå.49 See also the Uddesavibhaπga Sutta of the Majjhima (No. 138, quoted in NoD, SN, saññå) where angst is said to arise when what is (more explicitly) identified as ‘self’ is seen to be other. (Angst = paritassanå). [What oppresses us is not this or that, nor is it the summation of everything present-at-hand; it is rather the possibility of the ready-to-hand in general; that is to say, it is the world itself.] ‘the possibility … in general’ u/l [But this “nothing ready-to-hand”, which only our everyday circumspective discourse understands, is not totally nothing.] ‘only’ u/l: i.e. is all? [Being-anxious discloses, primordially and directly, the world as world. It is not the case, say, that the world first gets thought of by deliberating about it, just by itself, without regard for the entities within-the-world, and that, in the

48.  To be ‘mine’ is to be privileged: it is to claim for sole recognition as what ‘I am’. To see that whatever ‘I’ now ‘am’ could be other (which ‘I’ as das Man do not see) is to suspect that there is no privilege and to experience angst. 49.  Whatever they conceive, it is other than that.


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face of this world, anxiety then arises; what is rather the case is that the world as world is disclosed first and foremost by anxiety, as a mode of state-of-mind. This does not signify, however, that in anxiety the worldhood of the world gets conceptualized.] noted. p. 232/15-18 [Anxiety is not only anxiety in the face of something, but, as a state-of-mind, it is also anxiety about something. That which anxiety is profoundly anxious about is not a definite kind of Being for Dasein or a definite possibility for it. Indeed the threat itself is indefinite, and therefore cannot penetrate threateningly to this or that factically concrete potentiality-for-Being.] ‘Anxiety … possibility for it’ noted: Dasein is anxious with anxiety about its ownmost potentiality-for-Being (p. 321) since that potentiality-for-Being threatens not to be. p. 232/21-26 [That which anxiety is anxious about is Being-in-the world itself. In anxiety what is environmentally ready-to-hand sinks away, and so, in general, do entities within-the-world. The ‘world’ can offer nothing more, and neither can the Dasein-with of Others. Anxiety thus takes away from Dasein the possibility of understanding itself, as it falls, in terms of the ‘world’ and the way things have been publicly interpreted.] noted: Camus. p. 232/27-33 [Anxiety individualizes Dasein for its ownmost Beingin-the-world, which as something that understands, projects itself essentially upon possibilities. Therefore, with that which it is anxious about, anxiety discloses Dasein as Being-possible, and indeed as the only kind of thing which it can be of its own accord as something individualized in individualization.] Cf. NoD, Preface, ‘Every man … relieve him of anxiety.’ p. 232/36-38 [Anxiety brings Dasein face to face with its Being-free for (propensio in …) the authenticity of its Being, and for this authenticity as a possibility which it always is.] changed to read: Anxiety brings Dasein face to face with its Being-free for … (propensio in …) the authenticity of its Being as a possibility that it always is. p. 233/6 [disclosure] and [disclosed] u/l: read ‘anxiety in the face of’ and ‘anxiety about’. p. 233/20, 23, 35 and passim, [‘uncanny’], [“uncanniness”], [‘uncanniness’]



all u/l: read ‘strange’, ‘strangeness’ p. 233/23 [“not-being-at-home”] u/l: read ‘estrangement’ or ‘“exile”’. p. 234/24-26 [From an existential-ontological point of view, the “not-athome” must be conceived as the more primordial phenomenon.] noted p. 237/9-12 [The formally existential totality of Dasein’s ontological structural whole must therefore be grasped in the following structure: the Being of Dasein means ahead-of-itselfBeing-already-in-(the-world) as Being-alongside (entities encountered within-the-world).] double noted: Das Sein des Daseins besagt: Sich-vorweg-schon-sein-in-(das-Welt) als Sein-bei (innerweltlich begegnen dem Seinden). p. 237/13-32 [This Being fills in the signification of the term “care”, which is used in purely ontologico-existential manner … Because Being-in-the-world is essentially care, Being-alongside the ready-to-hand could be taken in our previous analyses as concern, and Being with the Dasein-with of Others as we encounter it within-the-world could be taken as solicitude … Care does not characterize just existentially, let us say, as detached from facticity and falling; on the contrary, it embraces the unity of these ways in which Being may be characterized …] noted: ‘Care’ is more or less (bhava)ta~hå—except that Heidegger does not quite see it that way (since he has no conception of ta~hånirodha). p. 239/14-20 [As something factical, Dasein’s projection of itself understandingly is in each case already alongside a world that has been discovered. From this world it takes its possibilities, and it does so first in accordance with the way things have been interpreted by the “they”. This interpretation has already restricted the possible options of choice to what lies within the range of the familiar, the attainable, the respectable—that which is fitting and proper.] ‘This … proper’ noted. p. 239/28 [tranquillized] u/l: complacent. p. 239/28-240/5 [All the same, this tranquillised ‘willing’ under the guidance of the “they”, does not signify that one’s Being towards one’s potentiality-for-Being has been extinguished, but only that it has been modified. In such a case, one’s Being towards possibilities shows itself for the most part as more wishing. In the wish Dasein projects its Being upon possibilities which not only have not been taken hold of in


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p. 247/20-23

p. 248/34-36 p. 249/9-10 p. 249/10-41 p. 251/3-15 p. 254/39-41 p. 254/1 p. 255/4-18


concern, but whose fulfilment has not even been pondered over and expected. On the contrary, in the mode of mere wishing, the ascendancy of Being-ahead-of-oneself brings with it a lack of understanding for the factical possibilities. When the world has been primarily projected as a wishworld, Being-in-the-world has lost itself inertly in what is at its disposal; but it has done so in such a way that, in the light of what is wished for, that which is at its disposal (and this is all that is ready-to-hand) is never enough. Wishing is an existential modification of projecting oneself understandingly, when such self-projection has fallen forfeit to thrownness and just keeps hankering after possibilities. Such hankering closes off the possibilities; what is ‘there’ in wishful hankering turns into the ‘actual world’. Ontologically, wishing presupposes care.]: A hierarchy of increasing intensity with care at the base. [Kant calls it ‘a scandal of philosophy and of human reason in general’ that there is still no cogent proof for the ‘Dasein of Things outside of us’ which will do away with any scepticism. He proposes such a proof himself …]: See p. 249. [The Being-present-at-hand-together of the physical and the psychical is completely different optically and ontologically from the phenomenon of Being-in-the-world.] noted. [The ‘scandal of philosophy’ is not that this proof has yet to be given, but that such proofs are expected and attempted again and again.] double noted: Yes, yes, yes! noted: N.B. The index xv seems to have been omitted. noted. [The experiencing of resistance—that is, the discovery of what is resistant to one’s endeavours—is possible ontologically only by reason of the disclosedness of the world.] noted. [The character of resisting is one that belongs to entities with-the-world.] ‘with’ u/l: within. [Reality is referred back to the phenomenon of care. But the fact that Reality is ontologically grounded in the Being of Dasein, does not signify that only when Dasein exists and as long as Dasein exists, can the Real be as that which in itself it is. Of course only as long as Dasein is (that is, only as long as


an understanding of Being is ontically possible), ‘is there’ Being. When Dasein does not exist, ‘independence’ ‘is’ not either, not ‘is’ the ‘in-itself’. In such a case this sort of thing can be neither understood nor not understood. In such a case even entities within-the-world can neither be discovered nor lie hidden. In such a case it cannot be said that entitles are, nor can it be said that they are not. But now, as long as there is an understanding of Being and therefore an understanding of presence-at-hand, it can indeed be said that in this case entities will still continue to be.] noted: Cf. notes on p. 101, and also NoD, SN, cetanå (e). p. 262/3-29 noted: Heracleitus’s use of λόγος is skin to the word dhamma. p. 264/23-265/15  noted. p. 268/15-20 [If the ‘truth’ which we encounter proximally in an ontical manner is considered ontologically in the way that is closest to us then the λόγος (the assertion) gets understood as λόγος τιός—as an assertion about something, an uncoveredness of something; but the phenomenon gets Interpreted as something present-at-hand with regard to its possible presence-at-hand.] ‘but …-at-hand.’ noted: i.e. statistically (theory of probability). p. 271/5-6 [Because this presupposing of itself belongs to Dasein’s Being, ‘we’ must also presuppose ‘ourselves’ as having the attribute of disclosedness.] noted. p. 272/34-35 [Being (not entities) is something which ‘there is’ only in so far as truth is.] double noted. p. 273 bottom: 24.5.65. Ñå~av⁄ra. p. 276/19 [Everydayness is precisely that Being which is ‘between’ birth and death.] noted: This is true of everydayness, but see note below. p. 276/41-277/3 [But to that which is thus outstanding, the ‘end’ itself belongs. The ‘end’ of being-in-the-world is death. This end, which belongs to the potentiality-for-Being—that is to say, to existence—limits and determines in every case whatever totality is possible for Dasein.] noted: It is true only within limits to say that Dasein is at an end in death. But it is probably true enough to support H’s following argument. p. 281/11-15 [When Dasein reaches its wholeness in death, it simultaneously loses the Being of its “there”. By its transition to no-longer-Dasein, it gets lifted right out of the possibility


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p. 281/27-37

p. 283/33-34 p. 285/29-30 p. 287/29 p. 288/1-5

p. 288/5 p. 288/23 p. 288/35 p. 289/6-8


of experiencing this transition and of understanding it as something experienced. Surely this sort of thing is denied to any particular Dasein in relation to itself.] ‘Surely … itself.’ noted: Actually not—except for the arahat. But such refinements are out of H’s range. Perhaps it is of no great consequence for his discussion. [Even the Dasein of Others, when it has reached its wholeness in death, is no-longer-Dasein, in the sense of Being-nolonger-in-the-world. Does not dying mean going-out-ofthe-world, and losing one’s Being-in-the-world? Yet when someone has died, his Being-no-longer-in-the-world (if we understand it in an extreme way) is still a Being, but in the sense of the Being-just-present-at-hand-and-no-more of a corporeal Thing which we encounter. In the dying of the other we can experience that remarkable phenomenon of Being which may be defined as the change-over of an entity from Dasein’s kind of Being (or life) to no-longer-Dasein. The end of the entity qua Dasein is the beginning of the same entity qua something present-at-hand.] noted: The Other’s body has changed its significance. It is no longer the point of view that I am not. [‘One is’ what one does.] noted: NoD, SN, kamma. [the ‘variations’ in which we are chiefly interested are those of end and totality;] ‘of’ u/l: i.e. belonging to (not: that are). [Dasein must, as itself, become—that is to say, be—what it is not yet.] noted. [When we speak of the “not-yet” of the unripeness, we do not have in view something else which stands outside, and which—with utter indifference to the fruit—might be present-at-hand in it and with it. What we have in view is the fruit itself in its specific kind of Being.] last sentence noted: A fruit is as a coming-to-ripeness. [The sum which is not yet complete] ‘The sum’ is circled: i.e. not ‘the sum of the fruit’ but ‘a sum as such’. Read ‘a sum that is not yet …’. [“not-yet” (of unripeness)] changed to: “not-yet” (i.e. of unripeness) [by] u/l: omit ‘by’. [The road stops. Such an ending does not make the road disappear, but such a stopping is determinative for the road


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p. 292/16-21

as this one, which is present-at-hand.] noted: as (this one, which is) present-at-hand. [just as Dasein is already its “not-yet”, and is its “not-yet” constantly as long as it is, it is already its end too. The “ending” which we have in view when we speak of death, does not signify Dasein’s Being-at-an-end, but a Being-towardsthe-end of this entity. Death is a way to be, which Dasein takes over as soon as it is. “As soon as man comes to life, he is at once old enough to die.”] noted: Sartre (L’Être et le Néant, pp. 615-638) criticizes H.’s Sein zum Ende (or Tode), not altogether in good faith. But both H. and S. assume that death is annihilation, an assumption that they do not attempt to justify. (But see p. 292.) Granted this assumption, S.’s argument has some weight; but since in fact the assumption is mistaken, H.’s argument turns out in practice to be more effective. We do not and cannot shrink from the possibility of an absolute blank (which is wholly unimaginable)—and here S. is right—, but we can and do shrink from change, and a fortiori from the possible radical change of death (which to some degree is imaginable)—and here H. is right, in that he says that we shrink from ‘our death’. But H. is wrong in supposing that we shrink from an absolute blank, and S. is wrong in supposing that we do not shrink from ‘our death’. If we shrink, says S. (in effect), it is not from our death that we shrink. It is our death that we shrink from, says H. (in effect), and our death is complete blankness. (S. actually says that we do shrink from death, but not from our death. But if death is not in some way ‘ours’, why should we shrink? S.’s concept of what constitutes ‘my possibility’ is also inadequate. [Only when death is conceived in its full ontological essence can we have any methodological assurance in even asking what may be after death; only then can we do so with meaning and justification. Whether such a question is a possible theoretical question at all will not be decided here. The this-worldly ontological Interpretation of death takes precedence over any ontical other-worldly speculation.] noted: Perhaps so; in which case, modify marginal note on p. 289. But to what extent is it justifiable to define death as the ‘end’ of Dasein if it is ‘not the end’? In this


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existence it is the end, and perhaps that is enough for H.’s purpose. Possibly, even, he escapes almost completely from S.’s criticism by not—at least explicitly—assuming annihilation. How far is the assumption implicit? Or perhaps is the implicit assumption towards eternalism? Heidegger’s later change of orientation perhaps suggests a shift from the one to the other—yet even so, Being, for him, is still temporal. Perhaps, on p. 289, it would be better to say that Sartre assumes that death is annihilation, and assumes that Heidegger assumes it. Confusion arises in this way: (i) we cannot have an idea of total blankness. (ii) We can have an idea of a radical change. (iii) An idea of change, and a fortiori the idea of a radical change, can be anxious. (iv) It is anxious because it is the idea that ‘I’ have always the possibility of being otherwise than ‘I’ am—in other words, that ‘I’ am not the eternal entity ‘I’ take myself for—in other words, that ‘I’, as such, am not. (v) Thus the ‘nothingness’ that I face in anxiety is not the (presumed) blankness of death, but the possibility that I do not exist—i.e. a personal nothingness, but not an individual nothingness (see NoD, SN, sakkåya). H. cannot distinguish between these. There is no anxiety for the arahat in the face of death. p. 292/30-38 [Methodologically, the existential analysis is superordinate to the questions of a biology, psychology, theodicy, or theology of death. … If Dasein in general never becomes accessible as something present-at-hand, because Beingpossible belongs in its own way to Dasein’s kind of Being, even less may we expect that we can simply read off the ontological structure of death, if death is indeed a distinctive possibility of Dasein.] noted: Necessary precautions! Are they sufficient? p. 292/39-293/1  [On the other hand, the analysis cannot keep clinging to an idea of death which has been devised accidentally and at random.] ‘which’ u/l: The idea, presumably, not the death. p. 294/18-19 [Dasein’s … death is the possibility of no-longer beingable-to-be-there.] noted: Yes—because it is the possibility of having-to-be-elsewhere (unspecified). p. 297/31-298/9  noted (and ‘tranquillization’ and ‘tranquillity’, altered to



‘complacification’ and ‘complacency’) p. 298/13-16 [It is already a matter of public acceptance that ‘thinking about death’ is a cowardly fear, a sign of insecurity on the part of Dasein, and a sombre way of fleeing from the world. The “they” does not permit us the courage for anxiety in the face of death.] noted. p. 298/19-21 [In anxiety in the face of death, Dasein is brought face to face with itself as delivered over to that possibility which is not to be outstripped.] noted: A bugbear. p. 298/24-28 [What is ‘fitting’ according to the unuttered decree of the “they”, is indifferent tranquillity as to the ‘fact’ that one dies. The cultivation of such a ‘superior’ indifference alienates Dasein from its ownmost non-relational potentialityfor-Being.] noted (and ‘tranquillity’ changed to ‘complacency’): Cf. Camus, Noces, ‘Le Vent à Djéwila’. p. 302/26-27 [Thus the “they” covers up what is peculiar in death’s certainty—that it is possible at any moment.] noted. p. 309/31-310/1  [Holding death for true (death is just one’s own) shows another kind of certainty, and is more primordial than any certainty which relates to entities encountered within-theworld; or to formal objects; for it is certain of Being-in-theworld. As such, holding death for true does not demand just one definite kind of behaviour in Dasein, but demands Dasein itself in the full authenticity of its existence.] noted: Camus. p. 310/1-11 [In anticipation Dasein can first make certain of its ownmost Being in its totality—a totality which is not to be outstripped. Therefore the evidential character which belongs to the immediate givenness of Experiences, of the “I”, or of consciousness, must necessarily lag behind the certainty which anticipation includes. Yet this is not because the way in which these are grasped would not be a rigorous one, but because in principle such a way of grasping them cannot hold for true (disclosed) something which at bottom it insists upon ‘having there’ as true: namely, Dasein itself; which I myself am, and which, as a potentiality-for-Being, I can be authentically only by anticipation.] noted: That I am (that Dasein exists) as a totality—disclosed in anticipation—is taken for granted when any question about the ‘I’ is raised. Asmimåna underlies attavåda, ‘I am’ before


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‘myself exists’. Cf. NoD, SN, mama. p. 312/24-26 [Dasein makes no choices, gets carried along by the nobody, and thus ensnares itself in inauthenticity. This process can be reversed only if Dasein specifically brings itself back to itself from its lostness in the “they”.] last sentence noted: Camus. p. 321/27-28 [in the face of this “nothing”, Dasein is anxious with anxiety about its ownmost potentiality-for-Being.] noted: I.e. lest it should not be. p. 325/8-10 [we cannot seek to delimit any concrete single possibility of existence as long as we correctly understand the methodological possibilities and tasks which such an Interpretation implies.] noted: I.e. … we shall not seek … provided… p. 326/35-39 [‘Guilty!’ turns up as a predicate for the ‘I am’. Is it possible that what is understood as ‘guilt’ in our inauthentic interpretation lies in Dasein’s Being as such, and that it does so in such a way that so far as any Dasein factically exists, it is also guilty?] noted. p. 329/34-330/1 [Dasein’s Being is care. … As being, it has taken the definite form of a potentiality—for-Being which has heard itself and has devoted itself to itself, but not as itself.] ‘but not as itself’ u/l: No, but as a basis. p. 330/1-12 [… as long as Dasein is, Dasein, as care, is constantly its ‘that-it-is’. To this entity it has been delivered over, and as such it can exist solely as the entity which it is; and as this entity to which it has been thus delivered over, it is, in its existing, the basis of its potentiality-for-Being. Although it has not laid that basis itself it reposes in the weight of it, which is made manifest to it as a burden by Dasein’s mood.] noted: Viññå~a = Being; Nåmar¨pa = basis; Saπkhårå (or Cetanå) = possibilities. p. 330/22-23 [It itself, being a basis, is a nullity of itself.] noted: Because basis is not Being-basis. p. 330/26-28 [in being its Self, Dasein is, as a self, the entity that has been thrown. It has been released from its basis, not through itself but to itself, so as to be as this basis.] ‘released from its basis’ u/l: i.e. in authenticity? p. 330/28-30 [Dasein is not itself the basis of its Being, inasmuch as this basis first arises from its own projection; rather as Beingits-Self, it is the Being of its basis.] noted: I = viññå~a rather



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than nåmar¨pa (this is the usual existential view). [Not only is the projection, as one that has been thrown, determined by the nullity of Being-a-basis, as projection it is itself essentially null.] noted: This may mean that Dasein must resign itself to a double limitation: to be something definite, and to be only one definite possibility. (Grimsley confirms.) [In the structure of thrownness, as in that of projection, there lies essentially a nullity. This nullity is the basis for the possibility of inauthentic Dasein in its falling; and as falling, every inauthentic Dasein factically is. Care itself, in its very essence, is permeated with nullity through and through. Thus “care”—Dasein’s Being—means, as thrown projection, Being-the-basis of a nullity (and this Being-the-basis is itself null). This means that Dasein as such is guilty, if our formally existential definition of “guilt” as “Being-the-basis of a nullity” is indeed correct.] noted: This is not enough unless Being is taken in the assertive sense of the conceit (måna) ‘I am’. Guilt is the undermining of this conceit by a nullity. This conceit is more than what H. has in mind. (The evidence is, that with the arahat there are still these nullities, but no guilt, because no conceit or assertion.) In H.’s later writings (particularly What Is Metaphysics?) he goes too far in the other direction. He bases anxiety (and therefore guilt) on a Nothing that is not simply a negation of all that is. There is such a Nothing, but it depends on avijjå. See NoD, SN, atakkåvacara (a). See Wyschogrod, p. 73. See note on p. 292. [Not only can entities whose Being is care load themselves with factical guilt, but they are guilty in the very basis of their Being; and this Being-guilty is what provides, above all, the ontological condition for Dasein’s ability to come to owe anything in factically existing. This essential Beingguilty is, equiprimordially, the existential condition for the possibility of the ‘morally’ good and for that of the ‘morally’ evil—that is, for morality in general and for the possible forms which this may take factically. The primordial “Being-guilty” cannot be defined by morality, since morality already presupposes it for itself.] noted: If we allow (against H.) that Being is not merely ‘I am’ but the conceit


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(måna) or desire (chanda) ‘I am’, then this § is absolutely correct. (There are entities ‘whose Being is care’, and they are the puthujjanas; and there are entities whose Being is cessation of care, and these are the arahats. Ta~håpaccayå … bhavo, and ta~hånirodhå … bhavanirodho.) p. 332/39-333/1  [The call is the call of Care. Being-guilty constitutes the Being to which we give the name of “care”.] ‘“care”’ u/l: (bhava)ta~hå. p. 333/4-6 [To the extent that for Dasein, as care, its Being is an issue, it summons itself as a “they” which is factically falling, and summons itself from its uncanniness towards its potentiality-for-Being.]: … summons itself from out of its strangeness … p. 334/6-10 [The common sense of the “they” knows only the satisfying of manipulable rules and public norms and the failure to satisfy them. It reckons up infractions of them and tries to balance them off. It has slunk away from its ownmost Being-guilty so as to be able to talk more loudly about making “mistakes”.] last sentence noted. p. 334/25-31 [Factically, however, any taking action is necessarily ‘conscienceless’, not only because it may fail to avoid some factical moral indebtedness, but because, on the null basis of its null projection, it has, in Being with Others, already become guilty towards them. Thus one’s wanting-to-havea-conscience becomes the taking-over of that essential consciencelessness within which alone the exietentiell possibility of being ‘good’ subsists.] noted: In ‘being good’ inauthentically the damage is already done. In ‘being good’ there is no question of having a ‘clear conscience’ since I am already guilty—I am guilty of being ‘good’. Goodness is s mode of Being; Being is Being-guilty. p. 336/2-3 [‘Life’ is a ‘business’, whether or not it covers its costs.] noted: Schopenhauer—“‘Life’ is a ‘business’ that does not cover its costs.” p. 337/19-20 [Dasein is an interconnected sequence of successive Experiences,] noted, u/l. p. 337/29-30 [The order of the sequence in which Experiences run their course does not give us the phenomenal structure of existing.] noted. p. 337/33 [self-subsistent]: read ‘absolute’.



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[Resoluteness, however, is only that authenticity which, in care, is the object of care, and which is possible as care—the authenticity of care itself.] altered to read: … which, in care, cares, and which possibilizes itself as care … p. 350/4-45 [What if it is only in the anticipation of death that all the factical ‘anticipatoriness’ of resolving would be authentically understood] ‘if death’ corrected to: of death. p. 351/fn. 1.3-6 [In this sentence Heidegger has used no less than five words derived from the Indo-European base ‘stå-’…] noted: Pali ‘ti††hati’. p. 352/3-14 noted. p. 353/12-16 [The ‘Guilty!’ which belongs to the Being of Dasein is something that can be neither augmented nor diminished. It comes before any quantification, if the latter has any meaning at all.] noted: It can be removed altogether—by the removal of asmimåna. p. 353/14-16 [Moreover, Dasein is essentially guilty—not just guilty on some occasions, and on other occasions not.] noted: Cf. Kierkegaard, CUP, p. 468 ff.50 50.  The dialectical reader will easily perceive that the investigation goes backward instead of forward… In existence the individual is a concretion, time is concrete, and even while the individual deliberates he is ethically responsible for his use of time. Existence is not an abstract sport but steady striving and a continuous meanwhile; even at the instant when the task is clearly set there has been some waste, for meanwhile time has passed, and the beginning was not made at once. Thus things go backwards: the task is presented to the individual in existence, and just as he is ready to out at once a fine figure (which only can be done in abstracto and on paper, because the loose trousers of the abstractor are very different from the strait-jacket of the exister) and wants to begin, it is discovered that a new beginning is necessary, the beginning upon the immense detour of dying from immediacy, and just when the beginning is about to be made at this point, it is discovered that there, since time has meanwhile been passing, an ill beginning is made, and that the beginning must be made by becoming guilty and from that moment increasing the total capital guilt by a new guilt at a usurious rate of interest. The task appeared so lofty, and one thought, “Like for like; as the task is, so surely must be he who is to realize it.” But then came existence with one “but” after another, then came suffering as a more precise determinant, and one thought, “Oh, yes, a poor exister must put up with that, since he is in existence.” But then came guilt as the decisive determinant—and now the exister is in thorough distress, i.e. now he is in the medium of existence. And yet this backward movement is a forward movement, in so far as going forward means going deeper into something. In abstracto and on paper the deception is to be off like Icarus, soaring up to an ideal task. But this progress, being chimerical, is sheer


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[When the call of conscience is understood, lostness it the “they” is revealed. Resoluteness brings Dasein back to its ownmost potentiality-for-Being-its-Self. When one has an understanding Being-towards-death—towards death as one’s ownmost possibility—one’s potentialityfor-Being becomes authentic and wholly transparent.] noted: Camus. [Ontological Interpretation projects the entity presented to it upon the Being which is that entity’s own, so as to conceptualize it with regard to its structure.] noted: I.e. instead of projecting this or that, it projects itself. [Dose it not then become altogether patent in the end that this problem of fundamental ontology which we have broached, is one which moves in a ‘circle’?] noted: Naturally—and that is its justification. It is self-justifying. [What common sense wishes to eliminate in avoiding the ‘circle’; on the supposition that it is measuring up to the loftiest rigour of scientific investigation, is nothing less than

retrogression, and every time an exister makes a beginning at anything of that sort, the inspector of existence (the ethical) takes note of him that he is rendering himself guilty, even though the man himself takes no note of it. On the other hand, the more deeply an individual in dealing with his task plunges into existence, the more he goes forward, even if the expression, if one cares to say so, goes backward. But since all deliberation means “going back to fundamentals,” so to recall the task back to a more concrete expression, means precisely a deeper absorption in existence. In comparison with the totality of the task, the fact of realizing a little of it is a retrogression, and yet it is progress in comparison with having the whole task in view and accomplishing nothing at all… …Precisely because it is an exister who is to relate himself, while guilt is at the same time the most concrete expression of existence, the consciousness of guilt is the expression for the relationship. The more abstract the individual is, the less he is related to an eternal happiness, and the more remote he is from guilt; for abstraction assumes the indifference of existence, but guilt is the expression for the strongest self-assertion of existence, and after all it is an exister who is to relate himself to an eternal happiness. … Therefore when in s particular case a person casts from him the blame and thinks that he is without guilt, at that very instant he makes the concession that on the whole he is one who is essentially guilty, only possibly in this particular he is not guilty. But here indeed we are not dealing with a particular case in which a man casts guilt from him and precisely by this denounces himself as essentially guilty, but it is a question of one’s essential relation to existence. But to will essentially to throw off guilt from oneself, i.e. guilt as the total determinant, in order thereby to become innocent, is a contradiction, since this procedure is precisely self-denunciation. It is true of guilt, if it is of any other determinant, that there is a catch to it; its dialectic is so crafty that he who justifies



p. 363/15-28 p. 363/39-40 p. 367/24-26

p. 368/32 p. 369/35-38

the basic structure of care.] noted: Quite! noted. [If we make a problem of ‘life’, and then just occasionally have regard for death too, our view is too short-sighted.] noted: Yes! [the ontological concept of the subject characterizes not the Selfhood of the “I” qua Self, but the selfsameness and steadiness of something that is always present-at-hand.] noted: It characterizes neither. (Granted that the ‘subject’ is selfsame and steady, it is not present-at-hand or it would be an object. This, of course, is a contradiction, since to be selfsame and steady a thing has to be an object. We might say that a ‘subject’ is a ‘trying-to-be-an-object’.) [one is that with which one concerns oneself.] noted: If this were so, there would be no possibility of concern. [… In terms of care the constancy of the Self, as the supposed persistence of the subjectum, gets clarified. But the

himself totally, denounces himself; and he who justifies himself partially denounces himself totally… In everyday life the total guilt, as a thing which is generally presupposed, is gradually so taken for granted that it is forgotten. And yet it is this totality of guilt which makes it possible that in the particular instance one can be guilty or not guilty. He who totally or essentially is guiltless cannot be guilty in the particular instance; but he who is totally guilty can very well be innocent in the particular instance… The priority of the total guilt is not to be determined empirically, is no summa summarum; for no determination of totality ever results from numerical computation… The consciousness of guilt is the decisive expression for existential pathos in relation to an eternal happiness. As soon as one leaves out the eternal happiness, the consciousness of guilt also drops out essentially, or it results in childish definitions which are on a part with a schoolboy’s report for conduct, or it becomes a defence of civil order. Therefore the decisive expression for the consciousness of guilt is in turn the essential maintenance of this consciousness, or the eternal recollection of guilt, because it is constantly put together with the relationship to an eternal happiness. So here there can be no question of the childish thing of making a fresh start, of being a good child again, but neither is there any question of the universal indulgence that all men are like that. One guilt is enough, as I have said, and with that the exister who along with this is related to an eternal happiness, is forever caught. …But still he is related to an eternal happiness, and the consciousness of guilt is a higher expression of this than is suffering. And in the suffering of guilt-consciousness, guilt at once assuages and rankles. It assuages because it is an expression of freedom as this is found in the religious sphere, where the positive is recognizable by the negative, freedom by guilt, but not directly recognizable aesthetically: ‘freedom’ recognizable by freedom. So it is that things so backward …


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phenomenon of this authentic potentiality-for-Being also opens our eyes for the constancy of the Self, in the sense of having achieved some sort of position. The constancy of the Self, in the double sense of steadiness and steadfastness, is the authentic counter-possibility to the non-Self-constancy which is characteristic of irresolute falling. Existentially, “Self-constancy” signifies nothing other than anticipatory resoluteness. The ontological structure of such resoluteness reveals the existentiality of the Self’s Selfhood.]: ‘Constancy of the Self’ = ‘absoluteness’. This seems to indicate that H. takes ‘self’ in the sense of ‘self-reflexion’. This is confirmed with the identification of ‘self-constancy’ as resoluteness, which is essentially a reflexive phenomenon. But, after all this, why should I care? If ‘self’ (i.e. ‘reflexion’) is the absoluteness of care, we still do not know why care should be care—that is, suffering. See NoD, SN, attå. See note on p. 153. [it is as care that Dasein’s totality of Being has been defined.] u/l: Yes, it is defined as care, but when we come to seize care reflexively, we find ourselves asking ‘Who cares?’ H.’s answer is ‘Care cares’, i.e. ‘self cares’; but this ‘self’, according to H., is the reflexion of resoluteness, and this still does not answer the question. The nullity (or notness) of care (p. 331) is the reason for guilt; and guilt is the reason for fleeing guilt in fallenness; and fallennees is the reason for hypostatising this self revealed by resoluteness into a self-thing;—but this cannot be so, unless there is already a hypostasis lurking in the phenomenon of care. Where does this hypostasis come from? (See note on p. 155.) Go back to p. 173 and we find that Dasein is a burden, and ‘Why that should be, one does not know’. [Projecting discloses possibilities—that is to say, it discloses the sort of thing that makes possible.] noted: Projection discloses determinations (cetanå, saπkhårå). ‘… thing that makes possible—i.e, that determines.’ [makes possible] changed to: determines. [Environmental entities no longer have any involvement. The world in which I exist has sunk into insignificance; and the world which is thus disclosed is one in which entities can be freed only in the character of having no involve-


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ment. Anxiety is anxious in the face of the “nothing” of the world; but this does not mean that in anxiety we experience something like the absence of what is presentat-hand within-the-world. The present-at-hand must be encountered in just such a way that it does not have any involvement whatsoever, but can show itself in an empty mercilessness.] noted: This goes too far. Things do not lose all involvement whatsoever, but rather the involvement itself shows itself as ‘to no purpose’. The teapot is still ‘for tea’—but of what use is that? But see p. 403. noted: Camus. noted. noted. [We shall not trace further how science has its source in authentic existence.] noted: It does not seem to follow from this that science offers a particularly authentic way of existing; ‘The main objection, the whole objection’ says Kierkegaard, ‘to natural science may simply and formally be expressed thus, absolutely: it is incredible that a man who has thought infinitely about himself as spirit could think of choosing natural science (with empirical material) as his life’s work and aim.’—Journals, No. 619. And Nietzsche: ‘Science as self—anaesthetic—do you know that?’—The Genealogy of Morals, Third Essay. But it must be remembered that Heidegger is speaking of ‘science’ as it ought to be, not as it necessarily is. See p. 447. [Factical Dasein exists as born; and, as born, it is already dying, in the sense of Being-towards-death.] u/l: Jåtipaccayå jaråmara~aµ. [if the ‘temporal’ distance from “now and today” is of no primary constitutive significance for the historicality of entities that are authentically historical, this is not because these entities are not ‘in time’ and are timeless,] ‘entities … historical’ u/l: Dasein. [Once one has grasped the finitude of one’s existence, it snatches one back from the endless multiplicity of possibilities which offer themselves as closest to one—those of comfortableness, shirking, and taking things lightly—and brings Dasein into the simplicity of its fate.] ‘and taking things lightly’ u/l: ‘Taking things lightly’ is not at all the


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same as ‘not taking things seriously’—cf. Kierkegaard, CUP pp. 450-1.51 [If Dasein, by anticipation, lets death become powerful in itself, then, as free for death, regain understands itself in its own superior power, the power of its finite freedom, which ‘is’ only in its having chosen to make such a choice, it can take over the powerlessness of abandonment to its having done so, and can thus come to have a clear vision for the accidents of the Situation that has been disclosed.] ‘its having done so’ u/l: i.e. its having made a choice. [… The idea seems to be that in resolute repetition one is having, as it were, a conversation with the past, in which the past proposes certain possibilities for adoption, but in which one makes a rejoinder to this proposal by ‘reciprocating’ with the proposal of other possibilities as a sort of rebuke to the past, which one new disavows…] noted: What is disavowed is surely the value (or anti-value) of the past as such (i.e. in comparison with the present). See pp. 445-4. [That which is familiar pre-scientifically in Dasein as disclosed Being-in-the-world, gets projected upon the Being which is specific to it.] noted: I.e. it is not projected upon this or that possibility (as it is in the normal way), i.e. as for this or for that; but upon its own specific mode of Being, i.e.; as for being what it is. It thus appears as an object for science. See second note on p. 447. [Remains, monuments, and records that are still present-athand … can turn into historiological material only because, in accordance with their own kind of Being, they have a world-historical character. And they become such material

51.  Irony is a specific culture of the spirit, and therefore follows next after immediacy; then comes the ethicist, then the humorist, and finally the religious individual. But why does the ethicist use irony as his incognito? Because he grasps the contradiction there is between the manner in which he exists inwardly, and the fact that he does not outwardly express it. For the ethicist does indeed reveal himself, in so far as he pours himself forth in the tasks of the factual reality in which he lives; but this is something that the immediate individual also does, and what makes him an ethicist is the movement of the spirit by which he sets his outward life inwardly in juxtaposition with the infinite requirement of the ethical, and this is something that is not directly apparent. In order not to be distracted by the finite, by all the relativities in the world, thereby insuring himself against becoming comical … (rest of passage is to be found at L. 129, 18.v.65)



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only when they have been understood in advance with regard to their within-the-world-ness.] last sentence noted: See note on p. 445. [Our going back to ‘the past’ does not first get its start from the acquisition, sifting, and securing of such material; these activities presuppose historical Being towards the Dasein that has-been-there—that is to say, they presuppose the historicality of the historian’s existence.] noted. [The delimitation of the primordial theme of historiology will have to be carried through in conformity with the character of authentic historicality and its disclosure of “what-has-been-there”—that is to say, in conformity with repetition at this disclosure. In repetition the Dasein which has-been-there is understood in its authentic possibility which has been.] ‘that is to say … has been’ noted: As now, so then. [If historiology, which itself arises from authentic historicality, reveals by repetition the Dasein which has-been-there and reveals it in its possibility, then historiology has already made manifest the ‘universal’ in the once-for-all.] noted: See last note. noted. [the Objectivity of a science is regulated primarily in terms of whether that science can confront us with the entity which belongs to it as its theme, and can bring it, uncovered in the primordiality of its Being, to our understanding.] noted: Science, in this sense, does not deal with ‘laws’. [If the historian ‘throws’ himself straightway into the ‘world-view’ of an era, he has not thus proved as yet that he understands his object in an authentically historical way, and not just ‘aesthetically’. And on the other hand, the existence of a historian who ‘only’ edits sources, may he characterized by a historicality which is authentic.] noted, “aesthetically’’ u/l: In the Kierkegaardian sense? See CUP, passim. But also, a preoccupation with ‘Buddhist Art’ or ‘Buddhist Culture’ conceals the Buddha and his Teaching. See NoD, Preface (c), where the careful editor of texts comes off better than the scholar as higher critic. [To the natural scientist, there remains, beside his science, as a kind of human tranquillizer, only aesthetic enjoyment.]


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noted. [holds it fact] ‘fact’ u/l: ‘fast’? or ‘holds it as fact’? [a further peculiarity of the time which has been ‘assigned’ shows itself. Not only does the ‘during’ have a span; but every ‘now’, ‘then’, and ‘on that former occasion’ has, with its datability-structure, its own spanned character, with the width of the span varying: ‘now’—in the intermission, while one is eating, in the evening, in summer; ‘then’—at breakfast, when one is taking a climb, and so forth.] noted. Kierkegaard, Søren, Concluding Unscientific Postscript, Oxford University Press, 1945 [translated by David F. Swenson] [I assume now the opposite, that the opponents have succeeded in proving what they desire about the Scriptures, with a certainty transcending the most ardent wish of the most passionate hostility—What then? Have the opponents thereby abolished Christianity? By no means. …it does not follow that Christ has not existed. In so far, the believer is equally free to assume it; equally free, let us note this well, for if he had assumed it by virtue of any proof, he would have been on the verge of giving up his faith.]: Would K agree to the logical conclusion of this line or thought, viz. that one could be a Christian even if there were no historical evidence whatsoever of Christ’s existence—or rather that a men claiming to be God had ever existed? [The certainty afforded by sense-perception is a deception, as one may learn from a study of the Greek sceptics …]: This is a mistaken view. See Sartre, L’Être et le Néant, pp. 11-12. [It is not so much that God is a postulate, as that the existing individual’s postulation of God is a necessity.]: Cf. Kirilov in Dostoievsky’s Possédés: “L’homme n’a fait qu’inventer Dieu pour ne pas se tuer. Yoilà le résumé de l’histoire universelle jusqu’à ce moment.’ [If God were to reveal himself in human form and grant a direct relationship, by giving Himself, for example, the figure of a man six yards tall, then our hypothetical society man and captain of the hunt would doubtless have his at-


p. 313/34-39

tention aroused. But the spiritual relationship to God in truth, when God refuses to deceive, requires precisely that there be nothing remarkable about the figure, so that the society man would have to say: ‘There is nothing whatever to see’. When God has nothing obviously remarkable about Him, the society man is perhaps deceived by not having his attention at all aroused. But this is not God’s fault, and the actuality of such a deception is at the same time the constant possibility of the truth. But if God had anything obviously remarkable, He deceives men because they have their attention called to what is untrue, and this direction of attention is at the same time the impossibility of the truth. In paganism, the direct relationship is idolatry; in Christendom, everyone knows that God cannot so reveal Himself. But this knowledge is by no means inwardness, and in Christendom it may well happen to one who knows everything by rote that he is left altogether ‘without God in the world’, in a sense impossible in paganism, which did have the untrue relationship of paganism. Idolatry is indeed a sorry substitute, but that the item God should be entirely omitted is still worse.]: Here, when applied to the Buddha’s Teaching, is what or where the position of samatha bhavanå comes in. It is ONLY with the initiation and development of samatha bh. that a puthujjana can even develop any anulomikåya khantiyå samannågato (see SN, sakkåya (b)). With the increase of samatha bh. towards the samådhi degree these pa†isotagåmi vertiginous views of the nature of existence can be developed and held longer and steadier finally with the possibility of culmination at first jhåna, that is if anulomikåya khantiyå samannågato has been developed. Without it samådhi guarantees nothing as far as attainment. It is only the necessary ‘allower’ for the mind to have such views if it wants. In short, ONLY samatha bh. allows anulomikåya khantiyå samannågato; only samådhi allows the ambiguity to subside once for all, tout court. [But the subjective thinker is not a poet, though he may also be a poet; he is not on ethicist, though he may also be an ethicist; he is not a dialectician, though he may also be a dialectician. He is essentially an existing individual,


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while the existence of the poet is non-essential in relation to the poem, the existence of the ethicist, in relation to his doctrine.]: In as far as Ethics is understood as referring to a particular doctrine, Christian or Mahometan for example, this is true: but if Ethics is a matter of concern over the question ‘What should I do?’ than every subjective thinker is necessarily an ethicist (unless he exists in pure immediacy; in which case however, though he may be subjective, he is hardly a thinker); for the first thing brought to light in subjective reflexion is individual responsibility for action. For Johannes Climacus this question does not become acute, since he takes for granted the validity of the Christian scriptures (see p. 237). In this patter he is inconsistent, since he does not profess to be a Christian. The question becomes acute with Nietzsche, and has remained so. p. 349/10-17 [Aesthetically it would be the highest pathos for the poet to annihilate himself, for him to demoralize himself if necessary, in order to produce masterpieces. Aesthetically it would be in order for a man to sell his soul to the devil, to use a strong expression which recalls what is perhaps still done more often than is ordinarily supposed—but also to produce miracles of art. Ethically it would perhaps be the highest pathos to renounce the glittering artistic career without saying a single world.] noted bottom of the page:  It is related of the late F.W.H. Myers, that, at a dinner party one evening, ha asked the gentleman sitting opposite what he thought would happen to him after his death. At first the gentleman made as if he hadn't heard the question, but Myers pressed him, and was eventually rewarded with the tasty reply, ‘Oh, I suppose I shall inherit Eternal Bliss—but why must you talk about such an unpleasant matter?’ p. 563/note 2 to page 108  [This is S.K.’s constant complaint]: S.K. would have complained more if Hegel had included an Ethics in the System. See p. 119/23-24. p. 10/15-16


Lavelle, Louis, Introduction à l’ontologie, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1951 [Et pour que l’être se puisse dire de toute chose de la même


p. 10/20-24

p. 11/fn. p. 13/fn.

p. 18/8-10

p. 99/fn.

manière, il faut que, d’aucune chose, il ne dise rien.]52: Precisely, and therefore l’être ne se peut pas se dire de toute chose de la même manière.53 For example: any part of a given object, and that object as a whole, both are; but they have a different order of being. The object as a whole is itself a part of a more general object. [Mais c’est un paradoxe évident de considérer l’être comme un abstrait. Il est le tout que l’on peut diviser, mais non point accroître. On le lui ajoute pas ses déterminations, on les discenre en lui par l’analyse.]54: But what is l’analyse? [… il est vrai de tout objet, au moins si l’on considère ses propriétés purement géométriques, qu’il implique le tout de l’espace.]55: But what is l’espace? [… (comme on le voit quand on considère l’affirmation de l’apparence comme telle ou de la possibilité comme telle).]56: And what about l’être de l’analyse or l’affirmation de l’affirmation?57 The reply on p. 18 is a deception. [Et l’affirmation d’aucune objet n’est rien de plus qu’une objectivation de l’acte même de l’affirmation.]58: This resembles Sartre’s reflet-reflétant, which is an illegitimate device for avoiding an infinite regression. Pure cowardice. [… le choix qui lui est laissé est seulement le choix entre son bien propre qui n’est jamais que l’apparence du bien, et le bien commun qui est seul capable de lui assurer son propre bien.]59: Noble sentiments.

52.  ‘For being to be said of everything in the same way it must not say anything about any thing.’ 53.  ‘being cannot be said of every thing in the same way.’ 54.  ‘But it is an obvious paradox to consider being in abstract. It is a whole that can be divided but not increased. One does not add its determinations to it, one discerns them in it by analysis.’ 55.  ‘… so it is true of any object, at least if one considers its purely geometrical characteristics, that it implies the whole of space.’ 56.  ‘… (as can be seen when considering the affirmation of appearance as such or of possibility as such).’ 57.  ‘the being of analysis or the affirmation of affirmation?’ 58.  ‘And this affirmation of any object is nothing but an objectification of the very act of affirming.’ 59.  ‘… the choice that is left to him is only a choice between his own welfare, which is nothing but the appearance of welfare, and the common good, which is alone able to assure him his own welfare.’


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Murti, T.R.V., The Central Philosophy of Buddhism, London: George Allen & Unwin, 1955 [Early Buddhism (Theravåda) was … an order of monks held together by certain rules of discipline (vinaya) and reverence for the human teacher.] noted [… everything is in flux. Existence … is discontinuous, discrete and devoid of complexity.]: If it is discontinuous how can it be in flux? [Denial of Satkåya … is the very pivot of the Buddhist metaphysics and doctrine of salvation.]: Where does the Buddha deny sakkåya? [… denial of the self is the basic tenet of Buddhism.]: Denial of the self—natthi attåti—is ucchedavåda. [For the Upani‚ads, the self is a reality; for the Buddha, it is a primordial wrong notion, not real.]: Why is a wrong notion ‘not real’? The Buddha is [… conscious of the interminable nature of the conflict, and resolves it by rising to the higher standpoint of criticism.]: ! [If he had answered the questions, yes, or no, i.e. accepted one of the alternatives propounded, he would have been guilty of that very dogmatism (di††hi) which he had so vehemently condemned in others.]: What about sammådi††hi, ‘right dogmatism’? [Though innocently stated as a description of facts, every philosophical system is an evaluation of things or a prescription to view them in a particular way.] noted [Vijñåna contains within itself the ingredients of the subjectobject relation.] noted [Rejection of all thought-categories and views is the rejection of the competence of Reason to apprehend Reality. The Real is transcendent to thought, it is non-dual (ç¨nya), free from the duality of ‘is’ and ‘not is’.] noted [The Vaibhå’ikas or any school of Buddhism never took Nirvå~a as nothing, but as an asaøsk®ta dharma, some sort of noumenal unconditioned reality behind the play of phenomena.]: !


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Ñå~amoli Thera, The Path of Purification, Colombo, A. Semage, 1956 [translation of the Visuddhimagga by Bhadan­tåcariya Buddhaghosa] This book provides an explanation of the Buddha’s Teaching that satisfies the immature thinker, who, thinking that he understands what he does not understand, remains a puthujjana. Unless one first understands that, in spite of the Visuddhimagga, in spite of the Commentaries, in spite of all that is not Sutta, one does not understand the Buddha’s Teaching, no progress towards understanding the Buddha’s Teaching is possible. Anaññåte aññåtamån⁄ sunanto pi saddhammam abhabbo niyåmam okkamitum kusalesu dhammesu sammattam. (Anguttara Nikåya V,152: iii,175) Cf. also ibid. p. 107, §§ 4&5. Ñå~av⁄ra, 7 September 1960 Nowell-Smith, P.H., Ethics, London, Penguin Books, 1954 [Nevertheless, although a man cannot see or hear or in any way ‘witness’ his own seeing or hearing, he can observe his own listening; for ‘observe’ here means ‘attend to’. … This sort of observing is not analogous to seeing and is not infallible, and it therefore gives no support to the searchlight theory of introspection.] ‘not infallible’ u/l: How can you tell? [But this fact in no way weakens the logical thesis that, for a man to explain fully why he does something, he must at some point or other use a word with a pro- or con-force, even though his case may be so complicated that he has to make use of a whole hierarchy of expressions.]: Yes. [But they do not seem to have been mistaken in their basic assumptions that the language of obligation is intelligible only in connexion with the language of purpose and choice, that men choose to do what they do because they are what they are, and that moral theories which to attempt to exclude all considerations of human nature as it is do not even begin to be moral theories.] noted [his vicious condition is one to be remedied by education, medical treatment, psycho-analysis or whatever means the wit of man can devise; it does not call for moral condemnation.]: Certainly it does call for moral condemnation.


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p. 306/24-26 p. 307/27-30


[There would be no incompatibility between an action’s being ‘self-determined’ and its being predictable or characteristic of the agent; for ‘self-determined’ would mean ‘determined by his motives and character’, as opposed to ‘forced on him by circumstances or other people’.]: This assumes that ‘character’ remains unchanged. Choice is certainly determined by character; but is character predictable? [We all know what it feels like to make an effort. These feelings are phenomena or occurrences that we experience in the same sort of way that we experience aches, pains, qualms and twinges.]: No. [‘Could he have tried harder than he did?’ But how can we answer the question? Ex hypothesi he did not try harder than he did; so that we must say either that his failure to try harder is inexplicable or that it was due to circumstances beyond his control—in which case he is blameless—or that it was due to his not having tried to try as hard as he could have tried to try. But this is absurd. In the first place, ‘try to try’ is meaningless.] ‘But … absurd’ u/l: Why? [… two lists, the one of moral traits, the other of non-moral. Cowardice, avarice, cruelty, selfishness, idleness would go into the first list; clumsiness, physical weakness, stupidity, and anaemia into the second.]: Råga and dosa go into the first list, but moha (stupidity) is put in the second. Why? [Even when it is known that a certain type of conduct, for example homosexuality, is not amenable to penal sanctions or moral disapproval, it is difficult to persuade people that it is not morally wrong.]: Is this simply a matter of language? The majority of people regard queers with emotional horror. [A wicked character can be improved by moral censure and punishment; and if we really thought that a man was so bad as to be irremediable we should, I think, cease to blame him.]: Therefore a bad man is more to be blamed than a very bad man. [But both he and the wicked man differ from the addict or compulsive in that the latter will respond neither to threats nor to encouragement.]: This is simply a matter of degree. [Now since a moral principle is a disposition to choose, a man cannot be said to have a certain moral principle if he regularly breaks it, and we discover what a man’s moral


principles are mainly by seeing how he in fact conducts himself.]: This is a muddle. A man cannot be said to ‘break’ a moral principle. p. 312/26-28 [Moreover the logic of practical language is adapted to the practice of ordinary men, not to that of mental paralytics.]: Practical language, then, has its philosophical limitations. p. 313/37-314/2 [But the one thing he cannot do is to try to alter his conception of the Good Life; for it is ultimately by reference to this conception that all his choices are made.]: If you define the conception of the Good Life as the conception by ultimate reference to which all choices are made, it is a mere tautology to say that one cannot choose to alter this conception. But it does not follow that there is such a conception: all that is implied is that upon any occasion of choice the degree of reflexion or self-criticism involved is limited. If there really was the conception of the Good Life we should have to conclude that the limit of the degree of self-criticism was fixed at a certain point. But this is evidently not so. A limit is only reached when successive reflexive regressions reveal no fresh attitude. This will tell us something about the nature of pro and con attitudes, but not about the Good Life. The ethical limit is reflexion for its own sake. p. 315/12-19 [We may ask what ‘we’ mean by a certain word; but we do not all mean the same thing and, if we did, it would be impossible to understand why it is that, in a philosophical dispute, which is concerned with the meanings of words that are the common property of everybody, the points made by the protagonists on each side seem to their opponents so absurd, and far-fetched.] ‘in a philosophical … everybody’ noted: This excludes from philosophy any concept for which there is no adequate word. p. 28/n.19

Nyanaponika Thera, The Discourse on the Snake Simile, Kandy, BPS, 1962 [‘The Universe is the Self’, lit.: ‘This (is) the world, this (is) the self’ (so loko so attå). That, in fact, an identification of the two terms is intended here, will be shown in the following comments. The best explanation of the passage is furnished in the Brahmajåla Sutta (D. 1) where a similar


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p. 38/n.49

p. 39/n.50

p. 15/22-27

p. 20/3-9

p. 20/10-12


phraseology is used: ‘There are, monks, some ascetics and brahmans who are eternalists and who proclaim self and world to be eternal’ … subsequently the theorist is introduced as stating his view in similar terms: ‘Eternal are self and the world … they exist as eternally the same’ … . The last term appears likewise in our text … . From this we may safely conclude that it is the identity, or unity, of the Self (or soul; mahåtman, paramåtman) with the universe (or the Universal Spirit, Brahman) which is conveyed by our text.] ‘From this we may … by our text.’ noted: No! Self and the world are complementary—attå and attan⁄ya. [When they (dhammånusår⁄ and saddhånusår⁄) actually reach the Path of Stream-entry (sotåpattimagga) they are called ‘Mature in Dhamma’ and ‘Mature in Faith’.] noted: They have reached it. See M.70. [They (those who have simply faith in me) are said to be of assured destiny (niyatagatika), i.e., of the final attainment of … Nibbåna. The Elder Monks of old say that such Bhikkhus are Lesser Stream-enterers (c¨¬a- or båla-sotåpanna; Vis.M. 703).] noted: No! If these were so, the Buddha would have said so in this Sutta, as he has of the D and S. Ogden, K.C. & Richards, I.A., The Meaning of Meaning, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1949 [10th ed.] [Normally, whenever we hear anything said we spring spontaneously to an immediate conclusion namely, that the speaker is referring to what we should be referring to were we speaking the words ourselves. In some cases this interpretation may be correct; this will prove to be what he has referred to.] noted [Those who allow beyond question that there are people like themselves also interpreting signs and open to study should not find it difficult to admit that their observation of the behaviour of others may provide at least a framework within which their own introspection, that special and deceptive case, may be fitted.]: No—the two points of view have nothing in common. [Any sensible doctor when stricken by disease distrusts his own introspective diagnosis and calls in a colleague.]: The sick doctor calls in a colleague precisely because his own


p. 65/22-23 p. 67/23-30

p. 81/6-16

p. 81/fn.

p. 82/5-10

p. 82/13-15 p. 82/28-30

introspective diagnosis does not fit into the framework of Medicine (which is the doctor’s view of the patient). [A primordial mind’s first thought could hardly be a general thought in the sense here considered.] noted [The question then arises: “What are these parts from which it would seem references can be compounded?” The answer which we shall give will be that they are themselves references, that every compound reference is composed wholly of simple references united in such a way as will give the required structure to the compound reference they compose.] noted [What then is this direct apprehending to which so important a role is assigned? The correct answer is usually rejected without hesitation, so contrary is it to some of our favorite verbal habits. To be directly apprehended is to cause certain happenings in the nerves, as to which at present neurologists go no further than to assert that they occur. Thus what is directly apprehended is a modification of a sense organ, and its apprehension is a further modification of the nervous system, about which we may expect information at some future date.]: This rests on the unjustified, and almost certainly false, assumption that all such modifications obey the laws of physics. [the referents being the same] u/l: No: the modification of the retina is a second ‘sense-datum’—it must be seen by another eye. Cf. J.-P. Sartre, L’Être et le Néant, p. 415: ‘La faute est … de confondre nos sens « pour nous » avec nos organes sensoriels pour autrui’.60 [However much we try, we cannot go beyond reference in the way of knowledge. True reference is reference to a set of referents as they hang together. False reference is reference to them as being in some other arrangement than that in which they actually hang together.] noted [By no manner of make-belive can we discover the what of referents. We can only discover the how.] noted [Directly apprehended retinal modifications such as colours are therefore initial signs of ‘objects’ and ‘events’ (or

60.  EN p. 415 = B&N p. 348: ‘The fault here is … that of confusing our sense “for ourselves” with our sensory organs for others.’


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however we agree to symbolize referents).] noted p. 84/fn. [In the case of the florin, to “this cone that I see, whose base is the florin, is both round and elliptical.” Here the sign, namely, the cone, may be interpreted as signifying either an elliptical cross-section, i.e. normal section, or a circular oblique section.]: I cannot see as a cone a cone whose apex is supposed to be seen by another to be in my eye. This confounds my vision with the other’s vision of me seeing. p. 88/17-19 [Symbols may contain necessary parts, e.g., the negative, and words like ‘the’ and ‘which’, which themselves have no specific referents.] noted p. 92/14-16 [‘The King of England’ and ‘the owner of Buckingham Palace’ have the same referent. They do not however symbolize the same reference.] noted p. 98/7-17 [But language, though oft spoken of as a medium of communication, is best regarded as an instrument; and all instruments are extensions, or refinements, of our senseorgans. The telescope, the telephone, the microscope, the microphone, and the galvanometer are, like the monocle or the eye itself, capable of distorting, that is, of introducing new relevant members into the context of our signs, so do manipulative instruments extend the scope of the motor activities.] noted p. 99/22-29 [Linguistic fictions occur in two ways, either through a misunderstanding of the function of symbolic accessories … or through hyposttization of such connective structural machinery as ‘or’, ‘if’, ‘not’, etc. to which only logicians are prone.] ‘as ‘or’ … are prone’ noted p. 99/31-100/1 [There is a group of words, such as ‘conception’, ‘perception’, ‘exitation’, which have been a perpetual source of controversy since the distinction between happenings inside and happenings outside the skin was first explicitly recognized. Processes of perceiving caused in an interpreter by the action on him of external objects haven been commonly called ‘perceptions’.] ‘and happenings … recognized’ noted; after the words ‘skin’ and ‘percieving’: See p. 81. p. 100/15-17 [A transcendental world of ‘concepts’ has therefore been envisaged by philosophers;]: asaπkhata; paññatti p. 100/24-26 [In discussions of method or of mental processes, ‘concepts’ or abstract references may, of course, be themselves talked



p. 104/19-23

p. 201/15-31

p. 202/13-15 p. 246/24-26

p. 60/n.4

p. 118/8-12

about;]: dhammånupassanå [Faced with such a contradiction, the mathematician proceeds to improve his symbolism, and we should follow his example rather than suppose that we have proved some curious eccentricity in the universe.] noted [Whether we judge ‘I am thinking of rain’, or, after looking at the barometer, judge ‘It is going to rain’, we are equally engaged in a sign situation. In both cases we are making a secondary adaptation to a previous adaptation as sign, or more usually to some part or concomitant of the adaptation; such as, for instance, the words symbolizing the reference about which we are attempting to judge in introspection, or, failing words, some non-verbal symbol or, failing even that, the obscure feelings accompanying the reference. It is possible of course to respond directly to our own responses. We do this constantly in long trains of habitual and perceptual actions; but such responses being themselves non-conscious, i.e., conscious of nothing, do not lead to introspection judgements of the kind which provide evidence for or against any view as to the nature of thinking.] ‘or, failing even that … the reference’ noted: ‘but such responses being themselves non-conscious’: ? [But those direct certainties notoriously vary from hour to hour and are different in different persons.]: attå [The observance of these causes ensures a clear prose style, though not necessarily one intelligible to men of letters.] noted Oltramare, Paul, L’Histoire des idées théosophique dans l’Inde (Tome II: La théosophie bouddhique), Paris: Geuthner, 1923 [Dhammadharo vinayadharo måtikådharo. Ce dernier terme est intéressant, car il contient une allusion manifeste à la 3e Corbeille.]61: No, måtikå is the bhikkhu-bhikkhun⁄ påtimokkha. [De toute les causes de faiblesse qui paralysent l’home, la plus funeste est le désir de la jouissance sensuelle. Aussi la sensualité figure-t-elle sous des noms variés parmi les

61.  ‘The last term is interesting, for it obviously refers to the third basket.’


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p. 160/n.2

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kleça, les âsava, les nîvarana, est les samyojana. Elle est le péché originel par lequel le mal a fait son apparition dans le monde.]62: No, micchådi††hi is the original sin. [Tout momentanés qu’ils sont les dharma existent et, par conséquent, its ont les trois caractères de toute existence: ils naissent, ils sont, ils cessent (uptâda, sthiti, bhanga). Cela veut-il dire qu’ils passent par trois états successifs? Non. S’il s’agissait d’états, chacun d’eux aurait aussi commencement, durée et fin, et ainsi de suite à l’infini. Ce sont des caractères et non des moments. Mais l’un des trois, la sthiti (station), ne comporte-t-il- pas par lui-même l’idée de la durée ? Pour se débarrasser de cette objection, on a remplacé sthiti par sthityanyathâtva « changement dans la station »; ou bien on a déclaré que ces laksana, ces caractères, concernent non les phénomènes mêmes, mais les séries; …]63: This is inside out. Sthityanyathåtva (†hitassa aññathattaµ) is canonical (A. and S.), whereas utpåda sthiti bhanga is later. [Pour faire de la formule une interprétation de la vie, on a posé le nâmarûpa comme l’équivalent des cinq skandha, ce qu’il n’était certainement pas dans le principe.]64: ‘ce qui … principe’ u/l & checked. Rhys Davids, T.W. & Stede, William, PTS Pali-English Dictionary, Oxford, Pali Text Society, 1921 N.B. All marginal notes by me (Ñå~av⁄ra) were made after 8th March 1960, which is the date of Ven. Ñå~amoli Thera’s

62.  ‘Among all the causes of weakness that paralyse man, the most disastrous is desire for sensual pleasure. Thus sensuality comes under various names, among them, klesa, åsava, n⁄varana, and samyojana. It is the original sin with which evil made its appearance in the world.’ 63.  ‘However momentarily, dharma exist and, consequently they have the three characteristics of all existence: they are born, they are, they cease (utpåda, sthiti, bhanga). Does this mean that they pass through three successive stages? No. For if it were a matter of stages each of them would also have a beginning, a duration, and an end, and so on infinitely. But they are characteristics, not moments. And does not one of these three sthiti (stations) include within itself the idea of duration? In order to get rid of this objection sthiti has been replaced by sthityanyathåtva, ‘alteration in the station’, or else it has been stated that these laksa~a, these characteristics, do not concern the phenomena themselves, but rather the series.’ 64.  ‘In order to make the formula an interpretation of life, the nåmar¨pa has been stated as equivalent to the five skandhå, which was certainly not in the principle.’




p. 16 p. 22

death. but we agreed that history and fact should be our sterling coins and measure, and that we should not interpret a word in the sense of later commentators, but get its unadulterated meaning, as it was in the mind of the oldest Theras and the near followers of Gotama himself: See Ariya. [We shall have a great many critics, and they will all be only too ready and glad to find fault—and they will find slips and unsolved problems—yet you and I know better, and we can feel satisfied, for we really solved a great many cruxes.]65: The reason for many mistakes is simply failure to read the context of the word. This is inexcusable carelessness. A††hamaka [Hence the eighth is he who stands on the lowest step of the Path and is called a sotåpanna]: NO. He is sotåpattiphalasacchikiriyåya pa†ipanno. Atta (1) [The Arahant … keeps an open mind on all speculative theories.]: He does nothing of the sort. The di††hi­ sampanna (sotåpanna) sees them as based on avijjå and has no more to do with them; for the arahat, who has no avijjå, they do not even present themselves. It is possible (etymologically, that is to say) that this derivation of atta/ niratta is justified, that the meaning is ‘assumed/rejected’ and not ‘self/denial of self’; nevertheless this article is unobtrusively misleading. For the ‘speculative theories’ in question are precisely the existence or non-existence of self (or the soul—see NoD, Preface (b), attå & cetanå), atthi attå ti or natthi attå ti (S. iv,400). Assumption of (the existence of) self is then attaµ (Sn. 787) whether it means ‘assumed’ or ‘self’, and likewise rejection of (the existence of of) self is nirattaµ, whether it means ‘rejected’ or ‘denial of self’. (And consequently—etymology apart—atta means both ‘assumed’ and ‘self’ and niratta means both ‘rejected’ and ‘denial of self’.) It is not possible to ‘keep an open mind’ on the existence or not of self (since the question of ‘who is it that keeps an open mind?’ incessantly undermines the stability of the neutral position), but it is possible to vacillate between the two extremes (in church on Sundays atthi attå ti; in laboratory on weekdays

65.  This section has been omitted from more recent reprintings of the Dic­tionary.


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natthi attå ti) or to ignore the whole question by plunging into distraction or going to sleep. The escape from both attaµ and nirattaµ is through anattasaññå. Attan (Meanings. 1.): For Abhidhånappad⁄pikå66 definition of attå see NoD, paramattå sacca. This article cleverly evades the issue by supposing that attå is either a phenomenon of purely historical interest known as a ‘soul’, or else the reflexive ‘self’, apparently of purely grammatical interest. All suggestion that there might be some connexion (of purely vital interest—see NoD, sakkåya) between ‘soul’ and ‘self’ is (with the exception of the artless little remark about conscience) discreetly avoided. Cf. NoD, cetanå. [A ‘soul’ according to general belief was some thing permanent, unchangeable, not affected by sorrow] ‘was’ u/l: Was? Attha (1) §4 [attho ca dhammo ca]: Dhamma = rule or teaching; attha = its purpose or advantage or benefit. Attha (2) [attha-gåmin, in phrase uday’atthagåmin leading to birth and death (of paññå)]: NO—it is understanding of arising and cessation. What sort of paññå leads to birth and death? Anabhåva [In the supplement to the D⁄gha (D iii.326)]: ? Anamatagga [Ep. of Saµsåra “whose beginning and end are alike unthinkable”] ‘end’ u/l: Why? Arahatta is the end of saµsåra. Anamatagga: pubbåko†i na paññåyati.67 Anågåmin: Confusion! Abhijånåti [to recognise] u/l: Abhijånåti is to know a thing for oneself, or to recognize a thing for what it is, and is used in particular for the ariyapuggala’s right view of things. Parijånåti is used specifically for the absolute knowledge of things occuring at the moment of realization. Naturally enough, there is no exact English equivalent. (To intuit?) See use in M¨lapariyåya Sutta (M.1). See also M. i,251. Arahatta (1) [A iii.451 gives the names of more than a score lay Arahants]: NO, they were sekha. Ariya [in accord with the customs and ideals of the Ary-

66.  Abhidhånappad⁄pikå: is a Pali dictionary written in the twelfth century by Moggallåna Thera of Ceylon. 67.  Anamatagga: an earliest point is not manifest.



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an clans, held in esteem by Aryans, generally approved]: NO. It is what is opposed to puthujjana, i.e. those on the four paths and those who have attained the four fruitions. Common/Noble: A commoner/A Noble. This article is a misleading (and perhaps not entirely ingenuous) application of the Historical Method. The tacit assumption is that the entire Teaching of the Buddha can be accounted for by reference to historical facts. It is a method of sterilizing ancient texts before touching them. However—no scholar no dictionary, so one mustn’t complain. If you are personally concerned to know what the Buddha taught, you must not use the scientific (or historical) method, which rests upon the assumption that you, the enquirer, are not personally concerned in the matter. And, in fact, the Buddha’s Teaching is strictly paccattaµ veditabbo viññ¨hi; and impersonal ‘scientific’ study is necessarily incapable of a clear formulation. [-dhamma, the national customs of the Aryans]: Nonsense! A particularly ridiculous translation. [-sacca, a standard truth, an established fact]: ‘Standard’ or ‘established’ only amongst the Noble Ones. [-såvaka, a disciple of the noble ones]: NO. A Noble Disciple. (concerning the commentators) [They sometimes therefore erroneously identify the two words and explain Aryans as meaning Arahants. In other ways also they misrepresented the old texts …]: The misrepresentation is not all on one side. The commentators certainly misrepresented the Suttas, but not as imagined by the author of this article. Eastern and Western scholarship—anurodha and pa†ivirodha.68 Alla [allavattha, with clean clothes (in an ablution; often as a sign of mourning)]: When not in mourning does one wear dirty clothes? Asura [pl. asurå, the Titans, a class of mythological beings] ‘mythological’ u/l: How can one be reborn as a mythological being? Asekha [very often meaning an Arahant] ‘very often’ c/o: always Ahosi-kamma [an act or thought whose kamma has no

68.  anurodha and pa†ivirodha: Submissiveness and belligerence.


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longer any potential force] u/l: What is the meaning of ‘an act whose kamma …’? An act is kamma; the meaning of kamma is action. But ahosikamma is highly commentarial in any case. Iddhi [There is no valid evidence that any one of the ten Iddhis in the above list actually took place. A few instances are given, but all are in texts more than a century later than the recorded wonder. And now for nearly two thousand years we have no further instances.]: What should you regard as ‘valid evidence’? ‘Nearly two thousand years’ would seem to take us back to the time of Jesus Christ, would it not? Somebody’s Protestant conscience is showing. Indriya [often wrongly interpreted as “organ”] u/l Udåna: This is all rather pompous; the word hardly means more than an exclamation. Cf. A. iii,76. Upådi~~a [laid hold of]: (Matter) that has been laid hold of (by craving), i.e. the body. Opakkamika [characterising a sensation of pain: attacking suddenly, spasmodic, acute]: NO. It means ‘due to effort or exertion’—often ‘self-inflicted’. Kamma (B. in objective relation: universal karma): It is useless to translate a Pali word by a Sanskrit word. Kamma is action.69 Kåma §2 [equivalent to abrahmacariyå] u/l: NO. Kåmesu­

69.  A note found among the papers left by the author: Cf. the Vinaya passage where the bhikkhus Yame¬u and Tekula asked the Buddha: Etarahi bhante bhikkh¨ nånånåmå nånågottå … te sakåya niruttiyå buddhavacanaµ d¨senti. Handa mayam buddhavacanaµ chandaso åropemå ti. ‘Nowadays, lord, monks of many names, from many clans … are corrupting the Buddha’s word in its own language. Why should we not formulate the Buddha’s word in Sanskrit verses?’ —which the Buddha forbade and made the rule: Na bhikkhave buddhavacanaµ chandaso åropetabbaµ. Yo åropeyya åpatti dukka†assa. Anujånåmi bhikkhave sakåya niruttiyå buddhavacanaµ pariyåpu~itun ti. (Vin. C¨lavagga V, 33.139) ‘The Buddha’s word, monks, is not to be formulated in Sanskrit verses. Whoever so formulates it commits an offence of wrongdoing. I enjoin that the Buddha’s word primarily be studied in its own language.’ Saka-nirutti is Mågadhi, the Buddha’s own language. Sakkata Sanskrit. Compare the Ven. Ñå~ananda Bhikkhu’s argument for the opposite view in his ‘Concept and Reality’ (Kandy: Buddhist Publication Society, 1971), pp. 41-3.



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micchåcårin is one who indulges in sexual misconduct (i.e. takes women belonging to others); abrahmacårin is one who engages in any sexual activity at all. §3 [‘one who is above the stream’] c/o: one who goes upstream. Kåya [-saπkhåra, the material aggregate, substratum of body] c/o: kåyasaπkhåra is either assåsapassåså (with vac⁄saπkhåra and cittasaπkhåra—M. i,301-2) OR kåyasañcetanå (with vac⁄saπkhåra and manosaπkhåra—A. ii,158). See note to CITTASAΠKHÅRA. Kåyasaπkhåra is clearly a different grammatical compound in the two cases (so also vac⁄saπkhåra). Saπkhåra in both cases means that which something depends on; but in the first case it is what the body depends on, namely, the in and out breath, and in the second case it is what the pañcakkhandhå depend on, that is to say, intention. In the second case, then, kåyasaπkhåra is intention associated with the body, that is to say, bodily action. See NoD, saπkhåra. There is no particular connexion between these two meanings. Kesika [hairy, of mangoes]: A mango is not hairy (like a gooseberry), though it may be fibrous. Khanti [anulomikåya khantiyå samannågata (being of gentle and forbearing disposition)]: ‘being … disposition’ c/o: ‘persuaded/acquiescing in conformity (scil. with the Dhamma), i.e. not of contrary opinion though not yet seeing for oneself’. See NoD, sakkåya (b). Khandha II.B. [khandhå (pl.) the elements or substrata of sensory existence, sensorial aggregates which condition the appearance of life in any form. Their character according to quality and value of life and body is evanescent, fraught with ills & leading to rebirth.]: They are simply the constituent parts of every experience. Ga~∂in: Not (f.) at the second reference (J V.202), but (m.). A case of mistaken identity. The lexicographer has (again) paid no attention to the context. Gu~a (1) [pañca kåmagu~å, the 5 strands of kåma, or 5-fold craving]: NO. At A. iii,411 it is said that the kåmagu~å are not kåma. Go [-rakkhå … given as a superior profession]: The origin of the name Gurkha. Gotrabh¨ [a supplementary Sutta in the Majjhima (Vol.


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III.256)]: What is a ‘supplementary Sutta’? Citta (2): There seems to be no entirely satisfactory English equivalent. Mindedness? after -sankilesa add: -saπkhåra, saññå and vedanå (M. i,3012). See KÅYASAΠKHÅRA. Cittasaπkhåra appears to have this meaning only, whereas manosaπkhåra (A. ii,158) appears to mean only manosañcetanå (or manokamma— M. i,389). Cittasaπkhåra and manosaπkhåra should not, therefore, be confused. This distinction clearly indicates the difference in meaning between citta and mano. (Though mano, like the English ‘mind’, is a rather protean word, and sometimes approximates to citta, e.g. dummano (D. ii,148), whence domanassa, and manopavicåra at A. i,176. And citta may sometimes approximate to mano: Citte gahapati rakkhite kåyakammam pi rakkhitaµ hoti … pe … manokammam pi rakkhitaµ hoti. (A. i,262) But see S. iv,112: Rakkhitena kåyena rakkhitåya våcåya rakkhitena cittena. We cannot substitute ‘cittasañcetanå’ for cittasaπkhåra, since ‘cittasañcetanå’ simply repeats itself—it is ‘intention associated with volitional consciousness’; if we compare: Saññå ca vedanå ca ete dhammå cittapatibaddhå, tasmå saññå ca vedanå ca cittasaπkhåroti with Phu††ho bhikkhave vedeti phuttho ceteti phuttho sañjånåti (S. iv,68) both at NP §5, we see that, in the definition of cittasaπkhåra, cetanå is conspicuous by its absence. And, conversely, we cannot say that saññå and vedanå are particularly ‘bound up with’ mano (as they are with citta), since imagining or reflexion does not exhaust the whole of volitional consciousness (as citta does)—see ‘Citte rakkhite … rakkhitena cittena’ above. Cittasaπkhåra is ‘that which is bound up with volitional consciousness’, ‘that upon which volitional consciousness depends’. Manosaπkhåra is manosañcetanå which is ‘intention associated with thought’ or ‘mental action’. See NoD, mano & PTSD Mano. It is thus a mistake to equate the triad kåyasaπkhåra vac⁄saπkhåra cittasaπkhåra with kåyasaπkhåra vac⁄saπkhåra manosaπkhåra, bodily, verbal, and mental intention or action. M. i,54, 301-2, A. ii,158; iii,82 seq., M. i,389. Cetanå: N.B. Husserl’s use of ‘intention’ is perhaps stricter


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than we need. His Britannica article on phenomenology may be found helpful, particularly his description of a cube. (The article, naturally, has its lokiya limitations (which, however, are instructive). Note that the words ‘psychological’ and ‘transcendental’, which appear in the article, are Husserl’s terms, and are not to be confused with lokiya/ lokuttara. Chanda [The commentaries follow the canonical usage of the word without adding any precision to its connotation.]: Quite rightly. Chanda has no more precise connotation than the word ‘desire’, which is almost exactly its English equivalent. Ñå~a [Perception (saññå) is necessary to the forming of ñå~a, it precedes it] ‘it precedes it’ u/l: This is structural precedence as much as temporal. See NoD, saññå, and D. i,185. ˝hita [-dhamma (adj.) everlasting, eternal]: No—‘invariant’ is the meaning. Ta~hå [Chain of Causation]: ‘Dependent Co-Origination’, not ‘Chain of Causation’. [Just as physical thirst arises of itself, and must be assuaged, got rid of, or the body dies; so the mental “thirst”, arising from without, becomes a craving that must be rooted out, quite got rid of, or there can be no Nibbåna. The figure is a strong one … ]: Curious simile! It seems to suggest that craving must be got rid of by satisfying it (like physical thirst). [… charged with religious emotion.]: ! ‘arising from without’? Thåvara [vegetable world]: No! How does one practice mettå towards vegetables? Thera [-våda, the doctrine of the Theras, the original Buddhist doctrine M i,164]: NO. This was before the Enlightenment!! Meaning is ‘declaration of being well grounded in (Ålåra Kålåma’s) doctrine’. Danta (1) [as one of the taca-pañcaka, or 5 dermatic constituents of the body] ‘dermatic’ u/l: The skin of one’s teeth? Di††hi [-patta, one who has formed (a right or wrong) view]: NO—one who has attained through right-view. Opp. to


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saddhåvimutta, one released through faith. Dukkha III. [ (c) dukkha as “feeling of pain” forms one of the three dukkhatå or painful states, viz. d.-dukkhatå (painful sensation caused by bodily pain), saπkhåra-dukkhatå having its origin in the sankhårå, viparinåma-dukkhatå being caused by change] ‘d.-dukkhatå, saπkhåra, & vipari­ nåma’ u/l: These are the unpleasure of unpleasant feeling, neutral feeling, and pleasant feeling, respectively. See M. i,303. [adukkham-asukhaµ, indifference (indifferent sens.), the last of which is the ideal state of the emotional habitus to be gained by the Arahant]: This suggests that the arahat does not feel pain. [one’s whole life-experience is caused by one’s former kamma]: This is the Nigantha’s view. Dvi III. [Stonehenge]: It is something of an achievement to have got Stonehenge into a Pali Dictionary. Dhamma [Freq. in formula sabbe dhammå aniccå] u/l: Where? Nava (2) [Gotamo navo pabbajjåya ‘a novice in the Wanderer’s life’] ‘Wanderer’s’ u/l: NO—homeless (confusion with paribbajati). Navuti [number ninety VvA 345 & in compn. eka- 91 D ii.2 (i.e. 92 minus 1)] ‘92 minus 1’ u/l: Or 97 minus 6? Or 104 minus 13? Nåma: This article merely reflects the traditional commentarial failure to understand nåmar¨pa. Nowhere in the Suttas is viññå~a included in nåma. Nåmar¨pa is not ‘mind and matter’ as the Visuddhimagga describes it. Muddle. [Synonymous with nåmar¨pa is nåmakåya]: NO—nåmakåya is the body or whole collection of nåma, i.e. of nåmar¨pa without r¨pa (as in ar¨pabhava). See also marginal notes to D. ii,62-3 (my copy). The four mahåbh¨tå are matter in its simplest modes. See NoD, r¨pa. Rigidity, cohesiveness, metabolism, stress (compressiveness). Nippapañca [-åråma, not fond of delay]: NO. It means loving non-diversification (see M. 18). Nibbåna II. [Nibbåna is purely and solely an ethical state]: A specious over-simplification. The English word ‘ethical’ does not cover right and wrong view, for example. And


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it turns out (see M. 9) that only the ariyasåvaka sees the foundation of ethics, so ethics have a transcendental (lokuttara) origin and justification. Besides, nibbåna is, precisely, the end of ethics. All personal existence (‘I am’) is ethical, since all action is either good or evil. Nibbåna is beyond good and evil. [The first and most important way to reach N. is by means of the eightfold Path]: Is there any other way? [N. is the untranslatable expression of the Unspeakable] ‘untranslatable’ u/l: Why? The translation is ‘extinction’. [cp. the simile of extinction of the flame which may be said to pass from a visible state into a state which cannot be defined] ‘state … defined’ u/l: Nonsense—the flame is extinguished, and so is the arahat. [årogya-paramå låbhå nibbånam paramam sukham … “N. is a higher bliss than the acquisition of perfect health …”]: No. årogya here is a synonym for nibbåna, and does not refer to bodily health. ‘(Mental) health is the highest gain, extinction is the highest bliss, etc.’ Nimitta [animitta]: Animitta cetosamådhi is possibly equivalent to saññåvedayitanirodha. M. iii,107-8; A. iii,397; iv,78; S. iv,268. (A. iv,78 restricts it to ariyas. A. iii,397 allows it to sotåpannas and sakadågåm⁄s—who can still be a prey to råga. S. iv,268 and M. iii,107 put it after nevasaññånåsaññå.) This identification is perhaps doubtful—will not cetosamådhi also have ceased? The usual interpretation, that it is equivalent to phalasamåpatti (not, I think, a Sutta expression), may be correct. Niratta (1) [soulless; view of soullessness or unsubstantiality]: NO—denial of self or soul, i.e. ucchedadi††hi, is not the same as anattå. Paccaya [I.e. paccaya became synonymous with our “relation”, understood in a causal sense, hetu meaning condition, causal antecedent, and 23 other relations being added as special modes of causality. Later still these 24 were held as reducible to 4]: A wholly misc(h)ievous and misleading development. [-åkåra]: Structure of conditions. Pañca [When Gotama said that his “religion” would last 500 years he meant that it would last a very long time,


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practically for ever.]: NO! Now that women were admitted, it would last only 500 years, and not 1000. Cf. ‘Na dåni brahmacariyaµ cira††hitikaµ bhavissati, pañc’eva dåni vassasatåni saddhammo †hassati.’ (A. iv,278). See also Vinaya C¨lavagga I,i. The author of this article has been too clever by half. This sort of blunder is what comes of inventing the meaning instead of consulting the texts. p. 394 Pa†icca-samuppanna [evolved by reason of the law of causation] c/o: Dependently (co-)arisen. p. 394 Pa†iccasamuppåda §1 [a preceding cause] u/l: NO. A cocommitant condition. §2 [The oldest account is found in the Mahåpadåna Suttanta of the D⁄gha Nikåya]: ? p. 411 Padhåniya [-anga, a quality to be striven after]: NO! A quality necessary for striving or exertion. p. 462 P⁄ti [classed under sankhårakkhandha, not vedanå-]: Not in the Suttas. See M. iii,84 (vedanånupassanå). p. 468 Pubbe [pubbe-nivås’ ånussati (-ñå~a), (knowledge of) remembrance of one’s former state of existence, one of the faculties of an Arahant] ‘of an Arahant’ u/l: Not only and not always. p. 482 Bala (1): As powers they make up the strength of the ariyasåvaka, who is thereby better equipped than the puthujjana. The puthujjana, in comparison, is a weakling. p. 489 Buddha [He is said to be the 25th of the series of former Buddhas (pubbå buddhå) S i,109,140; iv,52]: Not in these texts. p. 494 Brahma [-vihåra]: 1. Amity 2. Compassion 3. Congratulation 4. Equanimity p. 509 Bho [a familiar term of address]: Why ‘familiar’? It was the normal Brahmanical mode of polite address. Brahmans (bhovådins) were certainly proud, but they did not use bho to express their superiority (for which other words were available—Ud. 28). Bho is also used to address oneself—Ud. 15; M. i,168; M. iii,120. Used by a Brahman pupil to address his Brahman teacher—D. i,88. p. 520 Mano & Mana(s) [Both sides are an inseparable unity: the mind fits the world as the eye fits the light, or in other words: mano is the counterpart of dhammå, the subjective dh. Dhamma in this sense is the rationality or lawfulness



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of the Universe (see dhamma B. 1), Cosmic Order, Natural Law.] and [Dhamma as counterpart of mano is rather an abstract (pluralistic) representation of the world, i.e. the phenomena as such with a certain inherent rationality; manas is the receiver of these phenomena in their abstract meaning.]: This is quite good. See NoD, mano, dhamma. Manda: An infant is manda, so the meaning is rather ‘simple’ than ‘foolish’. I have heard it said in praise of scientists that they are very simple people; but this is not altogether a matter for congratulation. (Their simplicity does not afford them protection from dogmatism. There comes a point when their open mind shuts, and when it shuts, it shuts tight. It is hard for them to understand that things do not always obey the Laws of Science.) The scientific attitude of methodical doubt, or denial-of-all-attitude, has a certain restricted practical usefulness; but it cannot deal with problems of existence since it does not admit that there are any. Scientists, however, do not often understand this; and their simplicity, natural or artificial, is allowed to take charge.— ‘… idh’ekacco satthå mando hoti mom¨ho, so mandattå mom¨hattå tathå tathå pañham puttho samåno våcåvikkhepam åpajjati amaråvikkhepam: evam pi me no, tathå pi me no, aññathå pi me no, no ti pi me no, no no ti pi me no ti.’ (M. 76: i,520-1).70 Måtikå [used in Vinaya in place of Abhidhamma Pitaka] u/l: ? Viññå~a [It is difficult to give any one word for v., because there is much difference between the old Buddhist and our modern points of view.]: This is pure mystification. Saπkhåra: The traditional interpretation (Visuddhimag­ ga, Ch. XVII) that saπkhåra is kamma, and viññå~a to vedanå kammavipåka in the next life, is to be entirely ignored. There are no two ways about this. See also Sutta at A. i,173-77. (From this Sutta it can be seen (p. 176, §8 & §9) that vedanå in the pa†iccasamuppåda formulation in-

70.  ‘… here a certain teacher is simple and dull. Because he is simple and dull, when he is asked such and such a question he starts verbal wriggling, eel-wriggling: “I don’t say it is like this. And I don’t say it is like that. And I don’t say it is otherwise. And I don’t say it is not so. And I don’t say it is not not so.”’


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cludes cetasikå vedanå as well as kåyikå (and even kåyikå vedanå is not necessarily kammavipåkajå—see S. iv,230. The Commentator (Manorathap¨ra~⁄), who relies on the traditional interpretation, speaks (as far as I remember) of ‘vipåkacetanå’—what else can he do? But he has to turn a blind eye to cetanåhaµ bhikkhave kammaµ vadåmi (A. iii,415), and he has altogether failed to observe that he has fallen into one of the three views denounced in this very Sutta: Yaµ kiñcåyaµ purisapuggalo pa†isaµvedeti sukhaµ vå dukkhaµ vå adukkhamasukhaµ vå sabbaµ taµ pubbe­ katahet¨ti (p. 173-74).) But until the advocates of the traditional interpretation can find a di††hisampanna who will uphold them, there is no burden of disproof resting on those who cannot accept this interpretation. Also see Sn. 123, verse 653, where the words pa†iccasamuppådadaså (i.e. kammaµ pa†icca kassako hoti, sippiko hoti, ‘what one is depends on what one does’) kammavipåkakovidå (’the result of acting in a certain way is that one is known accordingly’—for vipåka in this sense see A. iii,413: Vohåravepakkåhaµ bhikkhave saññå vadåmi etc., quoted at NoD, kamma) do not refer to the twelve nidånå but are to be understood in the context in which they occur. Satta (4) [It is a collective and concluding (serial) number; its application has been spread from the week of 7 days (or nights), and is based on astronomical conception (Babylon!), this science being regarded as mystic, it invests the number with a peculiar magic nimbus.]: Are we to gather from this that the number 7 was discovered by the Babylonians? If so, insert the following: ‘From the week of 7 days its application has so far spread that, in modern times at least, it applies to practically anything with the property of being seven in number.’ S⁄la: Since the expression dasa-s⁄la does not seem to appear in the Suttas at all, it is futile to discuss which set of ten items really are (or are not) the ‘ten s⁄las’. But it is simply perverse to maintain that kammapathas (which lie partly outside the province of s⁄la) are more properly s⁄las than sikkhåpadas (which lie wholly within the province of s⁄la).


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[We have material enough to treat philosophical terms (like citta, dhamma, mano, viññå~a, sankhåra) historically] ‘to treat … historically’ u/l: The surest way of failing to discover what they mean.

Richards, I.A., Principles of Literary Criticism, London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1947 [… things outside the mind … ]: But what is ‘the mind’? The proper distinction is not ‘inside/outside the mind’, or even ‘mental/material’; it is ‘imaginary/real’ or ‘absent/ present’. [An unconscious mind is a fairly evident fiction.]: No, it is just a mistaken idea. [the mind is the nervous system] u/l: A perverse statement. [if mental events are recognized as identical with certain neural events] ‘identical’ u/l: ? If an act of ‘recognition’ is necessary to establish the identity of two things, it is clear that they are two and not one—i.e. that they are not identical. [a mental event, such as a toothache, and a non-mental event, such as a sunspot]: Why is a toothache a mental event? A toothache corresponds to kåyaviññå~a, a sunspot to cakkhuviññå~a. Neither corresponds to manoviññå~a. [when we have identified the mental event with a neural change … it loses none of its observable peculiarities, only certain alleged unstable and ineffable attributes are removed.] ‘it loses … peculiarities’ u/l: A toothache is private, a neural change is public. On this account pain is an ‘ineffable attribute’—regard a toothache as a neural change and pain is removed! [the identification of the mind with a part of the working of the nervous system, need involve, theology apart, no disturbance of anyone’s attitude to the world, his fellowmen, or to himself.]: All right, if you are going to take the external observer’s point of view—but then you have no business to speak of ‘conscious’ or ‘unconscious’. [but in many cases nothing is felt, the mental event is unconscious] u/l: Here, Conscious Mental Event = Neural Event accompanied by Consciousness (i.e. feeling, etc.). Unconscious Mental Event = Neural Event not accompanied by

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Consciousness (feeling, etc.). They differ in that one is, and the other is not, accompanied by consciousness. They are alike in that they are both mental events. The question would then be, ‘Other than by introspection can they be distinguished?’ But is this quite what is intended here? A different question is assumed in the following pages. [The process in the course of which a mental event may occur, a process apparently beginning in a stimulus and ending in an act, is what we have called an impulse.]: On p. 83, ‘the mind is a system of impulses’. It follows that ‘mental events’ may occur in the course of the processes called ‘mind’. There is therefore more to ‘mind’ than ‘mental events’. All this account is unsound. Matter may be described ultimately in terms of perception, but perception cannot be ultimately described in terms of matter. How can blue be described in terms of neural changes? A more satisfactory hypothesis, at least for purposes of this chapter, is that mental (= conscious) events (better, ‘occurrences’) and neural events have a one to one correspondence (less misleading than ‘are parallel’)—but this statement needs considerable expansion (a mental event is only known introspectively, for example, and a neural event extrospectively). [Stimuli are only received if they serve some need of the organism] u/l: Does the accidental sight of e.g. a cow serve a need of mine? [the conscious characters of the mental event, include evidently both sensations and feelings] after ‘sensations’: saññå [Every mental event has, in varying degrees, all three characteristics.] (the three are cognition, feeling, and conation) u/l: Even unconscious mental events? These, by definition (p. 86), are without feeling. The cat is out of the bag. [The advantage of substituting the causation, the character and the consequences of a mental event as its fundamental aspects in place of its knowing, feeling and willing aspects is that instead of a trio of incomprehensible ultimates we have a set of aspects which not only mental events but all events share.] ‘incomprehensible ultimates’ u/l: Why not? You must stop somewhere: you cannot describe everything in terms of something else; for if you do, you are simply playing with words. Finally you must say, ‘By “X” I mean


that’. p. 90/9-13 [To say that the mental (neural) event so caused is aware of the black marks is to say that it is caused by them, and here ‘aware of’ = ‘caused by’. The two statements are merely alternative formulations.]: All right, but there is no need to identify mind and matter. p. 92/top of p. Sensation here apparently = saññå (‘a pure invention’: see Sartre, p. 37). p. 92/6-11 [We speak, for instance, of pleasures and pains in the same fashion, as though they were of the same order, but, strictly, although pains as single self-sufficing modifications of consciousness are easily enough obtainable, pleasures by themselves do not seem to occur.] ‘of the same order … pains as’ checked p. 93/25-27 [We must of course be careful here to avoid confusing the intrinsic pleasure-unpleasure of the sensations with that which arises through memory.] after ‘intrinsic’: better ‘immediate’ p. 96/13-16 [Instructed by experience man and animal alike place themselves in circumstances which will arouse desire and so through satisfaction lead to pleasure.]: vicious circle of ta~hå p. 148/31-35 [If we say that we see a picture we may mean either that we see the pigment-covered surface, or that we see the image on the retina cast by this surface … ] ‘or that … surface’ u/l: How do we see this? With the mind’s eye? p. 176/n. [The very strange and important phenomena of apparent telepathy, and the feats of some ‘psychometrists’ and ‘clairvoyants’, although they may call for a great extension of our ideas as to how minds influence one another, do not require any desperate devices as transference of, or participation in, identical experiences. If they did, the possibility of investigating them by the only technique with which anything has ever been successfully investigated would be remote.]: That is not a valid objection. p. 282/15-21 [For clear and impartial awareness of the nature of the world in which we live and the development of attitudes which will enable us to live in it finely are both necessities, and neither can be subordinated to the other. They are almost independent, such connections as exist in well-organised individuals being adventitious.]: They are independent only


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when we are mistaken about the nature of the world! This is a much harder saying. Russell, Bertrand, Mysticism and Logic, Pelican, 1953 [But the greatest men who have been philosophers have felt the need both of science and of mysticism.]: Or of neither. p. 13/37-14/2 [Ethical considerations can only legitimately appear when the truth has been ascertained.]: If ethical considerations are to be postponed until after the truth has been ascertained, there is no truth in Ethics. p. 15/8-10 [The impossibility of change follows from this principle, for what is past can be spoken of, and therefore, by the principle, still is.] u/l: It does not follow. The past is, but as past. It is on account of this principle that change is possible. p. 28/3-4 [the whole stream of time]: But time is not a stream. p. 46/13-16 [The kernel of the scientific outlook is the refusal to regard our own desires, tastes and interests as affording a key to the understanding of the world. Stated thus baldly, this may seem no more than a trite truism.]: On the contrary, it seems like a dangerous falsehood. p. 46/21-26 [Aristotle, I understand, considered that the stars must move in circles because the circle is the most perfect curve. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, he allowed himself to decide a question of fact by an appeal to aestheticomoral considerations. In such a case it is at once obvious to us that this appeal was unjustifiable.]: This is an abstruse foolish question—we should be just as well off with Aristotle’s opinions. p. 48/9-11 [A certain self-absorption, not personal, but human, has marked almost all attempts to conceive the universe as a whole.] last 5 words u/l: But suppose there is no such thing as ‘the universe as a whole’? p. 48/22-23 [until we have arrived at such an attitude, it is hardly to be hoped that philosophy will achieve any solid results.]: It is a curious assumption that philosophy has not yet achieved any solid results. p. 48/32-35 [The desire for a larger life and wider interests, for an escape from private circumstances, and even from the whole recurring human cycle of birth and death, is fulfilled by the impersonal cosmic outlook of science as by nothing else.]: p. 9/911



p. 54/34-35 p. 55/14-16 p. 83/15-19

p. 98/9-10 p. 99/21-23

p. 104/10-13

p. 104/19-21 p. 104/28-31

p. 105/25-26 p. 106/26-28

Rubbish! ‘Science as self-anaesthetic: do you know that?’ Nietzsche. [The necessity of renunciation is evidence of the existence of evil.] u/l and checked. [For the young, there is nothing unattainable; a good thing desired with the whole force of a passionate will, and yet impossible, is to them not credible.] noted [We may not at least indulge the comfortable belief that a body in motion is just as truly where it is as a body at rest. Motion consists merely in the fact that bodies are sometimes in one place and sometimes in another, and that they are at intermediate places at intermediate times.]: This is all very well, but how are we to account for the fact that motion is perceived? [We can easily conceive of things that shall have no connexion whatever with each other.] u/l: If we can conceive of them they are connected. [Thus what is surprising in physics is not the existence of general laws, but their extreme simplicity.] u/l: This extreme simplicity of physics is simply the extreme simplicity of the physicists. [The ethical element which has been prominent in many of the most famous systems of philosophy is, in my opinion, one of the most serious obstacles to the victory of scientific method in the investigation of philosophical questions.]: Of course it is; but this is not an argument in favour of scientific philosophy. [To regard ethical notions as a key to the understanding of the world is essentially pre-Copernican.]: Only if it is presupposed that there is an ethical progress. [Ethics is essentially a product of the gregarious instinct, that is to say, of the instinct to cooperate with those who are to form our own group against those who belong to other groups.]: Is it? This is an infantile notion of ethics. Ethics is concerned with the question ‘What should I do?’, and this is only secondarily a social question. [the imaginative liberation from self] u/l: The scientific ‘liberation from self’ is a complete self-deception. ‘Science as self-anaesthetic: do you know that?’ Nietzsche. [I do believe that a philosophical proposition must be ap-


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plicable to everything that exists or may exist.]: It is typical of a logician to take for granted that philosophy is a matter of propositions. p. 122/3 [the outer world] u/l: How do you know there is an ‘outer world’? p. 122/15-17 [But it does not upset the physiological argument in so far as this constitutes merely a reductio so absurdum of naive realism.]: Of course it does. Either (i) we perceive the (outside) world, and the (outside) world is precisely what we perceive, or (ii) we perceive nervous impulses, in which case we do not perceive the ‘outside world’ at all. Russell, however, supposes that we perceive the outside world through our senses, which are thus a kind of transparent but distorting spectacles. If this is so, we have only to remove our senses in order to perceive the outside world as it really is. p. 123/2-3 [Since the immediate data of sense are … in a state of perpetual flux.] u/l: They are not. The notion of flux is scientific or speculative—it is by no means a given in immediate sense-perception. p. 123/bottom The cinema is by no means a good example of continuity. The still photographs have a positive endurance, not a ‘momentary existence’. p. 124/2-12 [Each of these is to be regarded, not as one single persistent entity, but sees series of entities succeeding each other in time, each lasting for a very brief period, though probably not for a more mathematical instant. In saying this I am only urging the same kind of division in time as we are accustomed to acknowledge in the case of space. A body which fills a cubic foot will be admitted to consist of many smaller bodies, each occupying only a very tiny volume; similarly a thing which persists for an hour is to be regarded as composed of many things of less duration. A true theory of matter requires s division of things into time-corpuscles as well as into space-corpuscles.]: This is quite good, but it is in contradiction with what is said on p. 82, which asserts the existence of instants and points. p. 127/11-15 [When a man says he has pain in his great toe, what he means is that he has a sensation associated with his great toe and having the quality of painfulness.]: He does not. p. 127/24-26 [In fact, however, it is not the sensible object in such a case



which is painful, but the sensation, that is to say, the experience of the sensible object.] ‘sensible object’ and ‘experience … object’ u/l: These two expressions are synonymous; we do not have on the one hand, a sensible object, and on the other, experience of it—if an object is sensible it is experienced. The word ‘sensation’ is superfluous. p. 162/7-8 [The continuity of appearances at very small distances from the thing] u/l: A close-up view of a thing can make, at best, only a relative difference. p. 162/8-11 [It is probable that the common-sense conception is not capable of complete precision. Let us therefore concentrate our attention upon the conception of the persistence of matter in physics.]: On the contrary, it is the physical conception of persistence that cannot be made precise. p. 162/13-16 [… if time and space form compact series …]: Series consisting of points or instants (or point-instants) can never be ‘compact’. p. 162/20 [intermediate] u/l: How is ‘intermediate’ defined? What is intermediate between red and blue—is it anything other than a combination of red and blue? p. 166/23-29 [it is significant and true to say ‘My present sense-datum exists’, and it may also be true that ‘x is my present sensedatum’. The inference from these two ‘propositions to ‘x exists’ is one which seems irresistible to people unaccustomed to logic; yet the apparent proposition inferred is not merely false, but strictly meaningless.] last 12 words noted: The word ‘merely’ implies that it is both false and meaningless. This is clearly impossible. p. 167/22-25 [Concerning the immediate objects in illusions, hallucinations, and dreams, it is meaningless to ask whether they ‘exist’ or are ‘real’. There they are, and that ends the matter.] ‘It is … exist’ and ‘they … matter’ u/l: If the assertion ‘they are’ can be made, then why not the assertion ‘they exist’? What is the difference between being and existence? p. 174/29-175/3 [… No two instants are contiguous, since the time-series is compact; hence either the cause or the effect or both must, if the definition is correct, endure for a finite time …]: But see p. 124. p. 175/3-15 [… if the cause is a process involving change within itself, we shall require (if causality is universal) causal relations


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p. 190/28-30

p. 191/16 p. 191/28-30 p. 191/31-34

p. 194/8-11

p. 196/11-13 p. 199/7-10


between its earlier and later parts …]: This completely ignores the question of level of generality. [… the sense that it will be what it will be. We all regard the past as determined simply by the fact that it has happened; but for the accident that memory works backward and not forward …] ‘the sense … will be’ u/l: ! ‘accident’ u/l: ? [our present wishes are conditioned by the past] u/l: This simply taken determinism for granted. Russell has not told us what the difference is between past and future. [… the accidental fact that the past but not the future can be known by memory]: On what grounds is it ‘accidental’? [Although the sense of ‘determined’ in which the future is determined by the more fact that it will be what it will be is sufficient (at least so it seems to me) to refute some opponents of determinism …] ‘the mere … will be’ u/l: This is not a statement of fact but a tautology, since ‘the future’ by definition, means ‘what will be’. The question ‘What will be’ remains unanswered. [Whether this doctrine is true or false is a mere question of fact; no a priori considerations can exist on either side.] u/l: On the contrary, the structure of volition is not compatible with that of a deterministic system. [We found that a system with one set of determinants may very likely have other sets of a quite different kind.] ‘may very likely have’ u/l: It cannot—even in cybernetic systems. [But it is hard to discover any state of mind in which I am aware of myself alone, as opposed to a complex of which I am a constituent.]: A sound observation. Sartre, Jean-Paul, Being and Nothingness, Methuen, 1957 [a translation by Hazel E. Barnes of L’Être et le Néant] (N.B. Ven. Ñå~av⁄ra Thera’s marginal notes were made in his copy of the French edition [f]; pagination below conforms to the English translation [e]. For those who wish to refer to the original French, the correspondence to the English pagination is roughly as follows: f11 = exlv; f37 = e3; f100 = e60; f200 = e153; f300 = e243; f400 = e334; f500 = e427; f600 = e517; f700 = e608.) The paperback edition published by Citadel (New York, 1966) follows the same pagination as Methuen as far as page 46, at which point it


omits Part One, Chapter Two, Bad Faith (Methuen pp. 4772). Subsequently the Citadel edition is paginated 24 pages less than Methuen (e.g. m73 = c49). The Citadel edition also omits Part Four, Chapter Two, Doing and Having (Methuen, pp. 557-616). p. xlv/24-26 noted. p. xlvi/13 [“to appear” supposes in essence somebody to whom to appear.]: The puthujjana’s mistake. p. xlvii/30-35 [What appears … is only an aspect of the object, and the object is altogether in that aspect and altogether outside of it. … It is altogether outside, for the series itself will never appear nor can it appear.] after last sentence: åyusaπkhårå? p. xlviii/27-31 noted. p. xlix/6-8 noted. p. lii/6-7 [the necessary and sufficient condition for a knowing consciousness to be knowledge of its object, is that it be consciousness of itself as being that knowledge.] ‘is that … itself’ u/l, and p. lii/15 [What is this consciousness of consciousness?] ‘consciousness of consciousness’ u/l, both lines 6-7 and 15 commented on: This is absolutely inadmissible: all consciousness is consciousness of something that is not itself consciousness. Husserl (see p. li) is quite right. Nonetheless, there is both pre-reflexion and reflexion, but they must be managed in some other way. Sartre (as will be seen) postulates the invalidity of the Law of Identity (A is A) within consciousness. This is remarkably ingenious, but it is not right. However one may look at it, it is still a piece of legerdemain. (No doubt Sartre would reply that human reality is a piece of legerdemain—see Part II, Ch. I.) p. lii/38-40 [Or else we affirm the necessity of an infinite regress (idea ideae ideae, etc.), which is absurd.] noted, ‘which is absurd’ u/l: Why is this absurd? Why not a pre-reflexive hierarchy to infinity? p. liii/3-6 [the reflecting consciousness posits the consciousness reflected-on, as its object. In the act of reflecting I pass judgement on the consciousness reflected-on; I am ashamed of it, I am proud of it, I will it, I deny it, etc.]: See Blackham’s comment on p. 154. p. lv/13-16 noted.


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p. lvi/24-28 p. lvi/34-37 p. lvii/32-36 p. lviii/3-5 p. lix/7-10 p. lx

p. lx/34-35 p. lxii/35-38 p. lxiii/3-5 p. lxv/9-11 p. lxv/17-18 p. lxv/29-30 p. lxv/33-35 p. lxvi/25 p. lxvi/37-41 p. 3/15-17 p. 5/23-34 p. 13/7-9

p. 19/6-32


noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. [All consciousness is consciousness of something. This definition of consciousness can be taken in two very distinct senses: either we understand by this that consciousness is constitutive of the being of its object, or it means that consciousness in its inmost nature is a relation to a transcendent being. But the first interpretation of the formula destroys itself: to be conscious of something is to be confronted with a concrete and full presence which is not consciousness.] last sentence noted: Sartre takes the subject for granted, and therefore fails to see that ‘Être en face d’une présence’ is redundant. The wrong alternative is rejected. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. [Thus Being cut from Essence which is its ground becomes “mere empty immediacy.” This is how the Phenomenology of Mind defines it by presenting pure Being “from the point of view of truth” as the immediate.]: Kierkegaard is very entertaining about all this in his CUP, pp. 101-6 and 299-302. [And we can ask the same question of Heidegger in these words: “If negation is the original structure of transcendence, what must be the original structure of ‘human reality’ in order for it to be able to transcend the world?” … Heidegger … makes of Nothingness a sort of intentional correlate of transcendence, without seeing that he has already inserted it into transcendence itself as its original structure.


Furthermore what is the use of affirming that Nothingness provides the ground for negation, if it is merely to enable us to form subsequently a theory of non-being which by definition separates Nothingness from all concrete negation? … I say, “Pierre is not there,” “I have no more money,” etc. Is it really necessary to surpass the world toward nothingness and to return subsequently to being in order to provide a ground for these everyday judgements? And how can the operation be affected? To accomplish it we are not required to make the world slip into nothingness; standing within the limits of being, we simply deny an attribute a subject. Will someone say that each attribute refused, each being denied is taken up by one and the same extramundane nothingness, that non-being is like the fullness of what is not, that the world is suspended in non-being as the real is suspended in the heart of possibilities? In this case each negation would necessarily have for origin a particular surpassing: the surpassing of one being toward another …] noted: These criticisms of Heidegger are partly justified and partly not. Two negations are in fact necessary, one for self-and-the-world, and one for negations within the world. (Only the first has to do with ta~hå or craving, and this can be brought to an end without affecting the other.) Neither H. nor S. sees this. p. 19/38-39 [a sort of geometrical place for unfulfilled projects] u/l: Oxford! p. 22/26-28 noted. p. 32/6-8 noted. p. 33/41-34/3 noted. p. 36/21-22 noted. p. 37/39-38/1 noted. p. 38/9-10 noted. p. 38/13-14 noted. p. 40/37-42 noted. p. 44/6-7 noted. p. 48/42-43 noted. p. 49/7-9 noted. p. 50/14-18 noted. p. 51/29 [Pierce] c/o: Peirce p. 55/6-9 noted.


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p. 73/7-10 p. 74/30-32

p. 76/3-11 p. 76/14-16 p. 76/25-26 p. 76/31-32 p. 77/1-7

p. 77/19-25 p. 77/29-33 p. 78/21-23 p. 78/35-37 p. 79/4-5 p. 79/11-12 p. 80/17-20

p. 80/20-23


noted. [The distinguishing characteristic of consciousness, on the other hand, is that it is a decompression of being.] noted: This is a postulate. It can satisfy only those who are content to accept a contradiction (A≠A) as irreducible. noted. [a duality which is unity, a reflection which is its own reflecting.] noted: See p. 74. noted. [The self refers, but it refers precisely to the subject.] ‘but … subject’ u/l: It can only do so if the sujet is already given. [The self therefore represents an ideal distance within the immanence of the subject in relation to himself, a way of not being his own coincidence, of escaping identity while positing it as unity—in short, of being in a perpetually unstable equilibrium between identity as absolute cohesion without a trace of diversity and unity as a synthesis of a multiplicity. This is what we shall call presence to itself.] noted: You cannot possibly derive a sujet from soi. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. [In truth Heidegger’s description shows all too clearly his anxiety to establish an ontological foundation for an Ethics with which he claims not to be concerned, as also to reconcile his humanism with the religious sense of the transcendent.] noted: Heidegger disclaims preoccupation with God, not with Ethics. (And, in fact, it is only without God that there can be an Ethic.) [The intuition of our contingency is not identical with a feeling of guilt. Nevertheless it is true that in our own apprehension of ourselves, we appear to ourselves as having the character of an unjustifiable fact.] noted: The word unjustifiable cannot be separated from the idea of culpabilité. My existence is unjustifiable because, in some way, I am guilty of existing. The existence of a stone is not unjustifi-


able, it is simply contingent. Kierkegaard (Postscript, p. 468 seq.) is closer to the mark. p. 80/36-39 noted. p. 82/3-4 noted. p. 82/14-16 noted. p. 82/19-21 [Consciousness is its own foundation but it remains contingent in order that there may be a consciousness rather than an infinity of pure and simple in-itself.]: ? p. 82/25-27 [Thirst refers to the consciousness of thirst, which it is, as to its foundation—and conversely. But the totality “reflected– reflecting,” if it could be given, would be contingency and in-itself.]: ? p. 82/31-32 noted. p. 83/3-4 noted. p. 83/21 noted. p. 84/23-25 noted. p. 86/23-25 noted. p. 87/13-14 [The existence of desire as a human fact is sufficient to prove that human reality is a lack.] noted: But this does not explain the existence of desire. There is no a priori reason why a lack should be unpleasant. p. 89/21-25 noted. p. 90/28-33 [The being of human reality is suffering because it rises in being as perpetually haunted by a totality which it is without being able to be it, precisely because it could not attain the in-itself without losing itself as for-itself. Human reality therefore is by nature an unhappy consciousness with no possibility of surpassing its unhappy state] noted: Why is this of necessity a condition of suffering? p. 91/13-17 [It is consciousness itself, in the heart of consciousness, and yet out of reach, as an absence, an unrealizable. Its nature is to inclose its own contradiction within itself; its relation to the for-itself is a total immanence which is achieved in total transcendence.] noted: See p. 74. p. 92/16-20 noted. p. 92/40-41 [Now we can ascertain more exactly what is the being of the self: it is value.] double noted p. 93/34-36 noted. p. 94/fn.12.4-7 noted. p. 94/fn.12.9-10 [the For-itself is not a moment which can be surpassed. As


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p. 95/6-8 p. 98/20-22

p. 103/13-17

p. 103/32-36

p. 104/3-4 p. 112/29-35 p. 114/20-22 p. 115/6-11 p. 116/19-26 p. 117/25-30 p. 118/22-24 p. 118/32-33 p. 120/18-19 p. 120/38-40 p. 121/36-37 p. 122/13-17 p. 122/24-25 p. 123/7-10 p. 123/27-31 p. 126/34-36


such its nature approaches much nearer to the “ambiguous” realities of Kierkegaard.] noted: Postscript, p. 302. noted. [The cloud is not “potential rain;” it is, in itself, a certain quantity of water vapour, which at a given temperature and under a given pressure is strictly what it is. The in-itself is actuality.] noted by a wavy line. [But the Ego is far from being the personalizing pole of a consciousness which without it would remain in the impersonal stage; on the contrary, it is consciousness in its fundamental selfn.ess which under certain conditions allows the appearance of the Ego as the transcendent-phenomenon of that selfness.] noted: It is inherently impossible to derive an Ego from a play of reflexions, unless it is already there implicitly. [Thus from its first arising, consciousness by the pure nihilating movement of reflection makes itself personal; for what confers personal existence on a being is not the possession of an Ego—which is only the sign of the personality—but it is the fact that the being exists for itself as a presence to itself.] noted: This is a clever guess, but all the same it is wrong. [In fact how can the person be defined if not as a free relation to himself?] noted: This question is not as rhetorical as Sartre intends it. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted.


p. 127/43-128/4 noted. p. 129/8-21 noted. p. 134/3-8 noted. p. 138/40 [the pure In-itself.] u/l: ? p. 139/9-140/8 noted. p. 146/14-19 noted. p. 146/42-147/1 noted. p. 147/34-37 noted. p. 149/17-19 [A for-itself which did not endure would remain of course a negation of the transcendent in-itself and a nihilation of its own being in the form of the “reflection-reflecting.”] noted; ‘which did not endure would remain’ u/l: This seems to imply an instant of no time, in which the pour-Soi-demeurerait, which implies some time however small. p. 149/22-23 [In the nihilating unity of the dyad reflection-reflecting, it would be.] ‘it would be’ u/l p. 150/39-40 noted. p. 152/22-25 noted. p. 154/29-34 [This phenomenon of reflection is a permanent possibility of the for-itself because reflective scissiparity exists potentially in the for-itself which is reflected-on; it suffices in fact that the reflecting for-itself (reflétant) posit itself for it as a witness of the reflection (reflet) and that the foritself (the reflection) posit itself for it as a reflection of this reflecting.] noted, u/l: This won’t do. The assertion in the first part of this sentence does not follow from the second part, which is simply a statement of desideration. Nothing is offered to show that the pour-soi-reflétant and reflet are capable of doing what is required of them. Cf. H.J. Blackham (Six Existentialist Thinkers, Kegan Paul, p. 145): ‘… my consciousness of something and implicit awareness of the consciousness, which is the foundation of all, is not awareness of me and can never reach me; the pour-soi as pure flight and pursuit can never know itself as flight and pursuit, and therefore the principle which ingeniously furnishes the ontological description from within could never produce the reflexive consciousness which carries out the description.’ p. f201/1 (e154/24)  [In existe lui-même sans forme de pour-soi] (compare footnote 9, e154) ‘sans’ corrected to: sous


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p. 155/28-31 p. 156/14-15

noted. [Thus the reflective achievement of Descartes, the cogito, must not be limited to the infinitesimal instant.] noted, ‘the infinitesimal instant’ u/l: what is this? Either it is an instant or it is an infinitesimal, but not both. Presumably the former is meant, but a certain ambiguity hangs about it. See p. 195 (=e149). p. 156/42 [for my being-in-the-instant is not a being] u/l: This, too, is ambiguous. p. 157/27-31 noted. p. 159/25-30 noted. p. 160/24-25 [this in-itself which reflection has to be is the reflected-on in so far as the reflective tries to apprehend it as being-initself.] ‘in so far … in-itself’ u/l: But how is it that impure reflexton succeeds where pure reflexion falls (pp. 200-201 [= e153-4])? If pure reflexion is really pure, how is impure reflexion possible? Does not impure reflexion haunt pure reflexion as the soi haunts the pour-soi? (See pp. 133-4 [= e89-91].) p. 161/21-32 noted. p. 165/28-40 noted. p. 168/27-33 noted. p. 170/8-9 noted. p. 170/17-24 noted. p. 172/5-9 noted. p. 172/23-24 noted. p. 172/32-33 noted. p. 173/27-31 noted. p. 174/24-26 noted. p. 174/33-36 noted. p. 174/40-175/4 noted. p. 175/34-38 noted. p. 176/41-43 noted. p. 177/18-20 noted. p. 177/27-35 noted. p. 179/10-11 noted. p. 179/25-28 noted. p. 179/35-37 noted. p. 179/43-44 noted. p. 180/39-181/3 noted.



p. 181/29-31 p. 184/30-35 p. 185/8-12 p. 186/20-26 p. 188/28-30 p. 191/12-14 p. 191/36-41 p. 192/28-30 p. 194/4-7 p. 194/42-44 p. 197/8-11 p. 197/26-37 p. 200/28-31

noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. noted. [What the world makes known to me is only “worldly.” It follows that if the infinite reference of instruments never refers to a for-itself which I am, then the totality of instruments is the exact correlate of my possibilities;] noted: Sartre too willingly ignores that Dasein ist jemeines.71 p. 200/37-38 [It is not then through unauthenticity that human reality loses itself in the world.] noted: But this is right (as against Heidegger). p. 200/44-201/2 [Of course the Worumwillen refers us to a structure of being which we have not yet elucidated; namely, the forothers. And the “for whom” constantly appears behind the instruments.] noted (Worumwillen = “for whom”): This is the flaw in Sartre’s argument—the chain is composite of different people’s points of view. (From the point of view of the workman the repairing of the roof is to procure him his wage, not to keep the rain off the clerks.) p. 202/23-25 noted. p. 203/15 [world] u/l (= fr. monde): ‘mode’? p. 203/19-21 noted. p. 204/19-29 noted. p. 205/10-14 noted. p. 206/21-26 noted. p. 206/29-34 noted. p. 206/37-39 noted. p. 208/1-4 noted. p. 209/5-10 noted. 71.  p. 200 Dasein ist jemeines = Dasein is in each case mine.


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p. 209/21-26 p. 210/9-11 p. 215/20-26 p. 221/23-27 p. 235/16-19

noted. noted. noted. noted. [But actually although I am still persuaded that the hypothesis of a transcendental subject is useless and disastrous, abandoning it does not help one bit to solve the question of the existence of Others.] noted: In this matter Husserl is better than Sartre (see pp. 147-8 [= e134-5]). p. 237/12-14 noted. p. 239/36-39 [Here as everywhere we ought to oppose to Hegel Kierkegaard, who represents the claims of the individual as such. The individual claims his achievement as an individual, the recognition of his concrete being, and of the objective specification of a universal structure.] noted: Postscript, p. 169 seq. p. 244/10-12 noted. p. 246/32-247/9 noted. p. 248/27-28 noted. p. 249/44-250/1 [Consequently it would be in vain to look in Sein und Zeit for a simultaneous surpassing of all idealism and all realism.] noted: But Sartre’s solution involves ‘an insurmountable discrepancy between the ideal and the actual’—Blackham, p. 145. p. 251/11-12 noted. p. 251/33-34 noted. p. 252/8-10 noted. p. 254/5-14 noted. p. 257/18-20 noted. p. 258/37-39 noted. p. 260/37-40 noted. p. 264/fn.18 Ven. Ñå~av⁄ra has corrected his text to: L’autre p. 265/41-266/4 noted. p. 266/6 noted. p. 267/35-42 noted. p. 273/9-12 noted. p. 277/39-41 noted. p. 281/24-30 noted. p. 282/27-31 [It would perhaps not be impossible to conceive of a Foritself which would be wholly free from all For-others and



which would exist without even suspecting the possibility of being an object. But this For-itself simply would not be “man”] noted: But the reverse is inconceivable. p. 287/15-20 noted. p. 288/3-8 noted. p. 288/41-289/2 noted. p. 290/30-35 noted. p. 294/43-295/1 noted. p. 297/17-21 [Only the dead can be perpetually objects without ever becoming subjects—for to die is not to lose one’s objectivity in the midst of the world; all the dead are there in the world around us. But to die is to lose all possibility of revealing oneself as subject to an Other.] noted by a wavy line p. 298/1-11 noted. p. 301/11-14 noted. p. 305/7-14 noted. p. 307/23-27 noted. p. 307/31-35 noted. p. 310/8-12 noted. p. 312/5-11 noted. p. 312/22-26 noted. p. 313/35-38 noted. p. 314/17-19 noted. p. 315/22-27 noted and checked (and quoted at SN, phassa [e]) p. 319/12-19 noted. p. 321/28-32 noted. p. 326/30-36 noted. p. 327/40-42 [Thus the body as facticity is the past as it refers originally to a birth; that is, to the primary nihilation which causes me to arise from the In-itself which I am in fact without having to be it.] noted: ? p. 328/28-32 noted. p. 329/38-41 noted. p. 336/8-10 noted. p. 338/21-23 noted. p. 338/42-339/2 noted. p. 339/18-30 noted. p. 343/37-344/3 noted. p. 346/11-19 noted. p. 346/39-42 noted.


seeking the path

p. 348/27-36 noted. p. 356/15-23 noted. p. 358/26-27 noted. p. 358/39-41 noted. p. 369/1-5 noted. p. 370/6-14 noted. p. 372/2-5 noted. p. 372/35-44 noted. p. 374/8-10 noted. p. 375/35-37 noted. p. 408/21-36 noted. p. 409/2-5 noted. p. 409/24-30 noted. p. 411/32-40 noted. p. 412/25-28 noted. p. 419/17-19 noted. p. 422/30-37 noted. p. 425/23-27 noted. p. 427/9-13 noted. p. 428/25-29 noted. p. 429/40-430/13 noted. p. 436/22-24 noted. p. 437/43-438/1 noted. p. 438/9-16 noted. p. 439/27-30 noted. p. 443/33-36 noted. p. 445/17-23 noted. p. 447/12-19 noted. p. 448/20-23 noted. p. 450/21-25 noted. p. 453/18-26 noted. p. 456/6-20 noted. p. 458/14-16 [Affectivity for Freud is at the basis of the act in the form of psycho-physiological drives. But this affectivity is originally in each of us a tabula rasa.] last sentence noted: ! p. 459/44-460/1 noted. p. 461/8-11 noted. p. 462/11-14 noted. p. 465/28-33 noted. p. 466/28-29 noted.



p. 468/35-36 noted. p. 473/30-42 noted. p. 481/38-39 noted. p. 482/16-18 noted. p. 482/42-483/1 [If conceiving is enough for realizing, then I am plunged in a world like that of a dream in which the possible is no longer in any way distinguished from the real. I am condemned henceforth to see the world modified at the whim of the changes of my consciousness;] noted: ? p. 486/35-39 noted. p. 497/24-28 noted. p. 500/21-32 noted. p. 501/44-502/3 noted. p. 503/12-15 noted. p. 505/31-33 noted. p. 506/12-13 noted. p. 506/43-507/4 noted. p. 507/30-33 noted. p. 508/16-18 noted. p. 525/22-28 noted. p. 530/34-41 noted. p. 534/12-14 [But is the death which will overtake me my death? In the first place it is perfectly gratuitous to say that “to die is the only thing which nobody can do for me.”] noted: Heidegger does not say that it is the only thing that nobody else can do for me. (See Sein und Zeit, pp. 240-242). p. 535/1-3 [If to die is to die in order to inspire, to bear witness, for the country, etc., then anybody at all can die in my place—as in the song in which lots are drawn to see who is to be eaten.] noted: But Heidegger admits this—SZ, p. 240. p. 538/21-28 noted. p. 543/36-40 noted. p. 545/26-29 noted. p. 545/41-43 noted. p. 554/26-29 [If I am mobilized in a war, this war is my war; it is in my image and I deserve it. I deserve it first because I could always get out of it by suicide or by desertion; these ultimate possibles are those which must always be present for us when there is a question of envisaging a situation.] ‘these … situation’ noted: ?


seeking the path

p. 562/21-24 noted. p. 570/24-28 noted. p. 571/9-12 noted. p. 572/29-31 noted. p. 573 24-28 noted. p. 579/13-20 noted. p. 580/20-22 noted. p. 581/17-25 noted. p. 593/11-14 noted. p. 593/30-33 noted. p. 593/35-36 noted. p. 594/22-25 noted. p. 599/29-32 noted. p. 605/43-606/4 noted.

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Sartre, Jean-Paul, L’imaginaire, psychologie phenomeno­ logique de l’imagination, Paris, Librairie Gallimard, 1940 [28th ed. translated as The Psychology of the Imagination, Rider, 1951] The well-documented occurrence of precognitive images is fatal to the whole of Sartre’s theory of images, and thus to the whole of his philosophy. This does not make him worthless reading. [Si la conscience imageante d’arbre, par example, n’était consciente qu’au titre d’objet de la réflexion, il en résulterait qu’elle serait, à l’état irréfléchi, inconsciente d’ellemême, ce qui est une contradiction. Elle doit donc, tout en n’ayant d’autre objet que l’arbre en image et en n’étant elle-même objet que pour la réflexion, enfermer une certaine conscience d’elle-même. Nous dirons qu’elle possède d’ellemême une conscience immanente et non-thétique.]72: This mystical device is designed to avoid an unavoidable infinite hierarchy of pre-reflexive consciousnesses. Elaborated in

72.  ‘If the imagining consciousness of a tree, for example, were only conscious as an object of reflexion, the result would be that in the unreflexive state consciousness would be unconscious of itself, which is a contradiction. Therefore, though it has no other object than the tree’s image and is itself an object only for reflexion, it must contain a certain consciousness of itself. We shall say that it has an immanent and non-thetic consciousness of itself.’



L’Être et le Néant. p. 75/47-76/2 [… lorsque la conscience proprement imageante s’évanouissait, il restait un résidu sensible qu’on pouvait décrire : c’était la toile peinte ou la tache du mur.]73: This unjustified assumption is the source of the En-soi-Pur. You cannot get apodictic knowledge after the experience has ceased. p. 76/7-8 [La matière de ma conscience imageante de portrait, c’était évidemment cette toile peinte.]74 ‘évidemment’ (obviously) u/l: No. p. 100/41-101/3 [Husserl a remarquablement décrit ces intentions particulières qui, à partir d’un « maintenant » vivant et concret se dirigent vers le passé immédiat pour le retenir et vers le futur immédiat pour le saisir. Il les appelle « rétentions » et « protentions ».]75: Cf. L’Être et le Néant, p. 145 & pp. 152-3.76 p. 101/44-47 [A ces impressions visuelles constituées en une forme immobile se joignent des impressions proprement kinesthésiques (sensations cutanées, musculaires, tendineuses, articulaires) qui les accompagnebt en sourdine.]77: Cf. L’Être et le Néant, pp. 388-9.78 p. 156/22-23 [Reste évidemment que je perçois toujours plus et autrement que je ne vois.]79: How do you know what you see, if it is not what you perceive? Voir here means the bare seeing of un­adorned reality. This is a pure invention, Sartre’s fundamental mistake. p. 162/12-19 [Ils {les objets} ne sont ni lourds, ni pressants, ni astreignants : ils sont pure passivité, ils attendent. La faible vie 73.  ‘… when the properly imagining consciousness vanished, there was left a sensible residue which could be described, namely the painted canvas or the spot on the wall.’ 74.  ‘The matter of my imagined consciousness of the portrait was obviously this painted canvas.’ 75.  ‘Husserl described outstandingly those particular intentions which, from a living and concrete now, head for an immediate past to hold it back and for an immediate future to seize it. He calls them “retentions” and “protentions”.’ 76.  EN pp. 145, 152-3 = B&N pp. 100, 109-110. 77.  ‘To these visual impressions constituted in a motionless form are joined some impressions purely kineothesic (articular, tendinous, muscular, cutaneous feelings) which accompany them without being noticed.’ 78.  EN pp. 388-9 = B&N pp. 323-325. 79.  ‘Obviously I perceive the rest always more and differently than I see it.’


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p. 168/7 p. 177/27-29

p. 180/17-20

p. 122/9-11

que nous leur insufflons vient de nous, de notre spontanéité. Si nous nous détournons d’eux, ils s’anéantissent; nous verrons au chapitre suivant qu’ils sont totalement inagissants : termes ultimes, ils ne sont jamais termes d’origine. Même entre eux, ils ne sont pas cause ni effet.]80: This completely ignores telepathic and clairvoyant images. [On sait que la plupart de nos rêves sont fort courts.]81: How? [Sans doute, chez la plupart des gens, l’élément affectif qui constitute l’analogon se réduit à un simple abstrait émotionnel.]82 ‘abstrait emotionnel’ u/l: Cf. L’Être et le Néant, p. 396.83 [Seulement cet irréel si bien précisé, si bien défini, c’est du vide; ou, si l’on veut c’est le simple reflet du sentiment. Ce sentiment, donc, s’alimente à son propre reflet.]84: This won’t do. Compare S.P.R. Proceedings vol. XLIII, pp. 176-180. Sartre, Jean-Paul, L’imagination, Paris: Librairie Félix Alcan, 1936) [Naturellement, il faudrait bien accepter l’existence de contenus sensibles dans la perception. Mais on reconnaîtrait, de ce fait même, que l’ordre de leur succesion est rigoureusement indépendant de la conscience.]85 ‘Naturellement … conscience’ double noted.

80.  ‘These objects are neither heavy nor pressing nor exacting. They are pure passivity. They await. The feeble life we blow into them comes from us, from our spontaneity. If we turn away from them they vanish utterly. We shall see in the following chapter that they are completely inactive. Being ultimate terms, they are never terms of origin. Even between themselves they are neither cause nor effect.’ 81.  ‘One knows that the majority of our dreams are very short.’ 82.  ‘No doubt with most people the affective element which constitutes the analogue is reduced to a simple emotional abstract.’ 83.  EN p. 396 = B&N p. 330. 84.  ‘But this unreal so well specified and defined is a void; or if we prefer, it is a simple reflection of feeling. This feeling, thus, sustains itself in its own reflection.’ 85.  ‘Naturally we should accept the existence of perceptible contents in the perception. But one would recognise, by this very fact, that the order of their succession is strictly independent of consciousness.’



p. 122/11-24

p. 124/30-32 p. 125/6-12

p. 125/20-22

[Et, de fait, je ne suis pas maître de voir un chapeau sur ce porte-manteau, ou un piano à la place de ce fauteuil. L’apparition des contenus sensibles resterait donc régi par un certain type d’association. C’est ce que Husserl exprime en disant que le principe de la liaison des contenus sensibles est la genèse passive par association, dont la forme essentielle est l’écoulement temporel. La conscience psychologique ne saurait diriger cette succesion ; mais, toute conscience étant acte, elle la « constate » comme dit Spaier. Avec cette constatation, dont les structures doivent faire l’objet d’une description spéciale, apparaît la perception du monde extérieur.]86: If this were so, then bodily action (as opposed to mental action) would be impossible. [Et si l’on vient dire ensuite que la pensée va chercher les images, la conséquence est inévitable : on transforme la pensée en une force matérielle.]87 (psychokinesis): P.K. [… en fait, si je puis soulever ce livre ou cette tasse, c’est en tant que je suis un organisme, c’est-à-dire un corps soumis aux mêmes lois d’inertie. Le seul fait que je puisse opposer mon pouce à mes quatre autre doigts dans un geste de préhension suppose déjà toute la mécanique.]88: Sartre’s mistake. I am not an organism. My body, in this sense, is ‘pour autrui’; it is an inert object, not subject. [… quand on dit que la pensée évoque, écarte, que la conscience sélectionne, on parle au figuré.]89 ‘on parle au figuré’ u/l: Why?

86.  ‘And in fact, I am not master of seeing a hat on this peg or a piano instead of this armchair. The appearance of perceptible contents would therefore remain governed by a certain type of association. It is what Husserl expresses when saying that the principle of connection of the perceptible contents is a passive genesis by association whose essential form is temporal flow. The psychological consciousness would not be able to direct this succession; but all consciousness being action, it “notices” it, as Spaier says. With this noticing, of which the structures must be the object of a special description, the perception of the external world appears.’ 87.  ‘If one comes and says, thereafter, that the thought goes to fetch images, the consequence is unavoidable: one transforms the thought into a material force.’ 88.  ‘… in fact, if I can lift this book or this cup, it is because I am an organism, i.e. a body subject to the same laws of inertia. The very fact that I can set my thumb against my four fingers by an act of prehension already supposes all the mechanism.’ 89.  ‘When one says that thought evokes, sets aside, that consciousness selects, one speaks in a figurative sense.’


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p. 126/2-3

p. 151/10-13


p. 17/22-25

p. 32/8-11

p. 56/16-18

[… la seule façon d’exister pour une conscience c’est d’avoir conscience qu’elle existe.]90: A half truth—a consciousness cannot have itself as object (even non-thétique), but only another layer of consciousness. [Ces lignes noires servent à la fois à la constitution de l’image « Chevalier » ou de la perception « traits noirs sur une feuille blanche ».]91: No. In the first case there are no lines, only the image. This opinion is S’s fundamental mistake, which he never afterwards corrects. Stebbing, L. Susan, A Modern Introduction to Logic, London: Methuen, 1930 [5th ed., 1946] [Neither Bradley, nor Bosanquet, nor any of this school of Idealist Logicians, has ever succeeded in making clear what exactly is meant by the principle of identity-in-difference upon which the metaphysical logic of the Idealists is based.]: Invariance under transformation? This cannot be made clear to a mathematical logician, since he does not know what it is to exist. [Mr. I.A. Richards has suggested the convenient terminology “the scientific use of language” and “the emotive use of language”. When language is used simply in order to refer to a referend its use is scientific.]: Nonsense! This suggests that any exact statement is scientific, i.e. impersonal or objective. A subjective statement can be no less precise. [But, as we have seen, a descriptive phrase which is, of course, connotative may have no application, e.g. ‘glass mountain’, ‘circular square’, ‘consistent philosopher’, ‘impeccable statesman’.] ‘circular square’ u/l: A ‘circular square’ is not connotative. [Affirmative existential propositions are true if, and only if, the descriptive phrase applies to an individual existing in the actual world.] ‘applies … world’ u/l: On p. 80 you say that an assertion of existence is an assertion that a certain property belongs to something, and an example

90.  ‘… the only way of existing for consciousness is to be conscious of its existence.’ 91.  ‘Black lines serve as well for constituting the image “Knight” as for the perception “Black marks on a white a page”.’



p. 70/23-26

p. 121/2-5

is given on pp. 160-1: ‘“Lions exist” means “the property of being a lion belongs to something”.’ From the passage above and Appendix A it seems that you maintain that a given property ‘belongs to something’ if the descriptive phrase of which it is the referent ‘applies to an individual existing in the actual world’. Thus the assertion ‘lions exist’ cannot be true—and in general no assertion of existence can be true—unless individuals exist, that is to say, by your own statement, unless the property of being an individual belongs to something. Thus neither ‘the property of being a lion belongs to something’ (i.e. ‘lions exist’) nor ‘the property of being an individual belongs to something’ (i.e. ‘individuals exist’) can be true unless ‘the property of being an individual belongs to something’ (i.e. ‘individuals exist’) is true. But whereas ‘lions exist’ need not be true even if ‘individuals exist’ is true ‘individuals exist’ must be true (by the Principle of Identity—p implies p—p. 472). Applying the criterion of logical types of p. 162 to the foregoing sentence, it becomes clear that ‘lions’ and ‘individuals’ are of different logical types. Thus, from the discussion on p. 162 the word exist in ‘lions exist’ does not mean the same as in ‘individuals exist’. Thus, in your definition of existence as ‘the belonging of the property of being an individual to something’, you are assuming this other meaning of existence, viz. ‘the belonging of the property of being an individual to something’. To be lion is to be an indivudual to which the property of being a lion belongs. Had you not better quickly find out what it is to be an individual? [It is not usual to interpret the “or” in an alternative proposition as expressing the exclusion of one alternative. That is, “or” is consistent with “perhaps not”. If “or” be interpreted exclusively, then p or q includes not both p and q. Some logicians hold that it must be so interpreted.]: On p. 191 you say ‘any proposition is either true or false’. Does this mean that it is ‘perhaps both’? Evidently not, since you go on to say ‘Not any proposition is both true and false’. This makes chaos of the Excluded Middle. [As Prof. Whitehead puts it: ‘Operations of thought are like cavalry charges in a battle—they are strictly limited


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p. 139/19-20 p. 140/1-5

p. 143/37-39 p. 144/4

p. 148/33-38


in number, they require fresh horses, and must only be made at decisive moments.’]: No wonder science is such an unintelligent pastime! [No one supposes that a class is an object of the same kind, or type, as an individual.]: On p. 503 you say that Russell holds that a table is a class. [a Chinese philosopher … is reported to have said that if there is a dun cow and a bay horse, then there are three things; for the dun cow is one thing, and the bay horse is another thing, and the two together are a third. We must inquire wherein precisely lies the absurdity of this statement.]: Far from being absurd, this statement is of fundamental ontological importance. (If there is a bowl and a stem, is the pipe that comes of taking the two together simply a class? If so, then the bowl and stem are also classes, since different parts of them can be distinguished.) : (1) All dodos have large heads. (2) Some dodos are female. In the argument here the second proposition implies that dodos exist, whereas the first does not. after ‘belong’: From Russell’s argument on p. 153 it seems that ‘All dodos’ is an incomplete symbol, whereas ‘Some dodos’ is not, since it implies the existence of some dodos. But this interpretation of ‘some dodos are female’ is a confusion between ‘n% of (all) dodos are female’ and ‘here are (some) female dodos’ (which is equivalent to ‘these female dodos [exist]’). In the first of these statements ‘some dodos’ (=‘n% of dodos’) is an incomplete symbol, and in the second (= ‘these dodos’, ‘here are dodos’) it is not. Whether or not ‘all dodos’ and ‘some dodos’ (as incomplete symbols) imply the existence of dodos depends on what is understood by ‘existence’. [The assertion that the properties Φ and Ψ both belong to something will be false if nothing has Φ, or if something has Ψ but nothing which has Φ has Ψ. Hence, A poet was stabbed implies that a poet exists. In asserting (∃x).Φx.Ψx, we are asserting (∃x).Φx, i.e. that Φ belongs to something. Neither of these propositions contains a particular as a constituent.]: Nonsense! ‘Something’ is a particular. It would not be significant to say ‘I saw something’ (= ‘I saw a thing’) if there were no such thing as things. That is why ‘some


p. 159/34-38

p. 160/3-5

p. 160/27-32

p. 160/36-40

p. 161/1-2 p. 161/8 p. 161/13-18

dodos’ (on p. 144) is not a incomplete symbol. There is no such thing as unspecified existence. : How can you say there certainly are no unicorns? How can you tell? The whole point is that if they can be thought of they might exist—their existence would not involve contradiction. In other words to be thought of is to be possible. But it does not follow that unicorns exist as possibilities apart from the act of thinking about them. And it does not follow from the fact that to be seen is to be certain that horses exist as certainties apart from the act of seeing them. [As Professor Moore points out, ‘unreal’ does not stand for any conception at all. We use the expression ‘are unreal’ to express the denial of existence, not to assert a special mode of existence.]: Ass! Unreal = Imaginary. [There is no doubt that properties may be present to mind in a way analogous to, but different in important respects from, the way in which an individual object may be present to mind. But properties are not individual objects, and can be thought of even if there are no objects which possess these properties.]: A property is a thing. I.e. it is distinct from other properties. What distinction is there between a thing and an individual object? : ‘This lion exists’ = ‘this lion is certain’ (not to be confused with ‘this is certainly a lion’). ‘Lions exist’ = ‘this lion is possible’ (not to be confused with ‘this is possibly a lion’). (Cf. Russell: ‘“it is a lion” is sometimes true.’) In other words, ‘Lions exist’ = ‘I am thinking of a lion’. [… Mr. Russell puts this point by saying that ‘it is of propositional functions that you can assert or deny existence’ … ]: Ergo; I am a propositional function. [he says that ‘Lions exist’ means ‘“x is a lion” is sometimes true’.]: Therefore ‘we exist’ means ‘“x is I” is sometimes true’. [Mr. Russell points out that if we say ‘Men exist, and Socrates is a man, therefore Socrates exists’, we are committing the same sort of mistake as we should be if we said, ‘Men are numerous, Socrates is a man, therefore Socrates is numerous’. The mistake is to suppose that it is significant to say the same sort of things about an individual as is said


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p. 162/18-22

p. 166/22-25

p. 174/31-33 p. 176/33-36

p. 176/36-39


about a class.]: Agreed, so we must choose which of these is meaningful: (1) stones exist (2) that stone exists. The choice is crucial. [Mr. Russell suggests that a logical type may be defined as follows: ‘A and B are of the same logical type if, and only if, given any fact of which A is a constituent, there is a corresponding fact which has B as a constituent, which either results from substituting B for A, or is the negation of what so results’.] noted [From the common sense point of view we may say that if it is true that A is red, then A can be regarded as possessing the quality of being red independently of any reference to any other object.]: This is a mistake. A red thing implies not-red things. If red is present, it is so absolutely and alone: not-red is absent and plural—i.e. not-reds. Red is related to—i.e. is not—each not-red individually; and when all these relations or negatives are taken together we have singular (or present) red related to plural (or absent) not-red. This is simply the Principle of Identity—A must be given before not-A can appear. But this does not make A independent of not-A, it simply states that ‘an irreducible multiple relation’ cannot be given (or exist) without a point of view (or orientation). This is an ontological necessity, hidden from the eye of the non-existing logician. (A is A = A or not-A exclusively). [Self-evidence is a relative notion. What we are able to doubt depends upon our previous knowledge and our mental capacity.]: Rubbish! [The necessity of logical principles is nothing but the necessity of constructing systems. The construction of such systems may be the expression of the thinking of rational beings. But this would not establish the necessity.]: This assumes that ‘the thinking of rational beings’ is a fortuitous and arbitrary quality of certain beings, like having blue eyes, or red hair: man + blue eyes = blue-eyed man; being + thinking = thinking (or rational) being. But cogito ergo sum: thinking implies being. [We … deny that any significance can be attributed to the notion of absolutely necessary principles and absolutely indemonstrable propositions.]: Wrong. Absolute principles


p. 177/2-5

p. 183/6-7 p. 191/5 p. 191/6 p. 191/fn.

p. 192/23-24 p. 193/17-18 p. 193/21-23

p. 197/37-38

p. 232/1-2 p. 232/35-37

are those that cannot be conceived without being tacitly assumed in the act of conception. [The propositions of a deductive system are established as true only by means of inductive verification. Such verification is never complete; it could not amount to demonstration.] noted [There is a class of all possible individuals, called the ‘universe’.]: This assumption is unjustified. [Any proposition is either true or false.]: (and perhaps both) [Not any proposition is both true and false] is changed to read: Any proposition is not both true and false (and perhaps neither). [The principles of identity, excluded middle, and contradiction have been traditionally considered as the only fundamental logical principles. This is a complete mistake. They are neither less, nor more, important than the other principles we have stated.]: But the point is not whether they are more important, but whether they are more fundamental. [The formal principles stated above in terms of implication suffice for the construction of deductive systems] u/l and [Without these two principles it would be impossible to construct a deductive system] also u/l, both sentences connected by a line: Which do you mean? [The development of the primitive propositions stated in Principia Mathematica takes place in virtue of the repeated use of these two principles.] u/l: Nonsense! See pp. 232-3 and 489. [If by ‘the world’ we mean ‘everything that is the case’, then it may be doubted whether the world is a system.]: The expression ‘is the case’ applies only to propositions (we cannot, for example, say ‘a lion is the case’), and ‘everything that is the case’ means ‘all true propositions’. A world of propositions is truly a logician’s world. [A mathematical proposition is independent of what happens to exist.]: Even of the existing mathematician? [Owing to its independence of empirical facts mathematics is a wholly deductive science; hence it employs a method of exact demonstration.]: If mathematical propositions are, as you say, independent of what exists, then they are not concerned with matters of fact—they do not depend


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p. 244/4-7

p. 246/4-6 p. 285/29-33

p. 287/2-3 p. 287/37-39 p. 401/2-8


upon inductive verification. And if this is so, mathematics is neither deductive nor demonstrative. I rather fancy that the contradictory statements on pages 192 and 193 are due to a wish to avoid this conclusion. (From p. 415 it is clear that mathematical propositions—e.g. 2 + 2 = 4—cannot be asserted as true in the same way as propositions about matters of fact (e.g. ‘all crows are black’). The Principle of Deduction does not therefore apply to mathematics: this seems to be as good as admitted at the top of p. 489, and footnote 1.) [We do in fact apprehend general principles in this way … To describe this method of discovering axioms as inductive inference involves an extension of the word “inductive” as ordinarily used, but no doubt this extension is desirable.]: This is mathematical or true induction, which is not inferential. [In order that a proposition should be scientific it must relate to something other than the immediate experience of an individual.] noted [there seems not the slightest justification for the view that, for example, the causal law Sugar dissolves in water must hold in all possible worlds, in the sense in which ‘must’ means ‘could not be otherwise’.]: If it did not hold, could we still speak of sugar and water? It must hold in every world where there is sugar and water. The question is: will this still be sugar in all possible worlds? [the property being on this table is an external relational property of this book.]: It is not a property of this book. It is a property of the situation book-on-a-table. [This is equivalent to the assertion that every property of A is an internal property. There is no reason to suppose that this assertion is true.]: On the contrary. [Professor Whitehead goes so far as to say that ‘the incredible labours of the scientist would be without hope’ were it not for ‘the inexpungable belief that every detailed occurrence can be correlated with its antecedents in a perfectly definite manner exemplifying general principles’. This is perhaps an overstatement. The scientist is quite ready to leave out of account a number of details which do not fit into his scheme.]: Whitehead is justified: the scientist does


p. 401/25-26 p. 404/21-23 p. 405/5-10

p. 406/1-5

p. 407/29-32 p. 415/1-19

not merely ‘leave out of account’ what does not fit his scheme, he denies its existence. Thus only what fits his scheme is an occurrence. [But if nature exhibited a type of order of unimaginable complexity, finite minds could not discover it.]: What, pray, is a ‘finite mind’? [there seems to be a deep-rooted tendency in the human mind to seek what is identical, via the sense of something that persists through change.] noted [The demand for continuity is closely bound up with the demand for persistence and identity. There must be no sudden breaks, no arbitrary discontinuities. The appearance of such discontinuities presents a problem; the discovery that, in spite of appearances, something identical or conserved is felt to be an acceptable solution.]: Confusion! There cannot be identities without discontinuity. It is continuity that presents a problem. [‘the feature of the whole development of theoretical physics, up to the present, is the unification of its systems which has been obtained by a certain elimination of the anthropomorphous elements, particularly the specific sense-perceptions.’ In accordance with the principle of unity, or simplicity, the complex has been reduced to the simple.]: Unfortunately for this ideal, space is a specific sense-perception. [Now this change of attitude is never experienced with regard to propositions that have been validly deduced from propositions accepted as axiomatic.] noted [… the square of the hypotenuse is equal to the square of the two sides, or … three times five is equal to the half of thirty … these propositions follow from the initial concepts and the axioms or primitive propositions, which determine a given abstract system. To assert that they are true is to assert that they are validly deduced. But to assert that propositions concerning matters of fact are true is to assert that they express facts with regard to what exists. Such propositions cannot be deduced from initial concepts and axioms with regard to the relations of such concepts. Hence, the denial of such propositions cannot be demonstrated to be false; hence, either of two contradictory propositions with regard to matters of fact might be true.] noted


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p. 443/1-3

p. 443/23-24

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p. 448/2-5


[‘the paradox is now fully established that the utmost abstractions are the true weapon with which to control our thought of concrete fact.’—A.N. Whitehead.]: This simply boils down to the observation that things endure, which is only a paradox if one starts from the scientific assumption that there are no such things as things. The paradox is in the presupposition. Whitehead mistakenly assumes that the concrete is instantaneous, and then proclaims a paradox when he discovers it is not. Concrete things are transcendent, but this does not make them abstract. [‘To be abstract’, says Professor Whitehead, ‘is to transcend particular concrete occasions of actual happenings’.] ‘transcend’ u/l: No, it is to ignore them. the full sentence noted: A rock is therefore abstract if, by its remaining unchanged (as the same rock), it transcends the successive particular concrete states of the advance of the tide. [… Thus the man watching the sea-gull may notice a second sea-gull, and it is possible that he should be sensibly aware of the same specific shade of whiteness in the throat of each of them, although he cannot name this shade. The particular occasion, then, is irrelevant to what is meant by the ‘absolute specific shade of white’, since it can be within more than one particular occasion. It is in this sense that the absolutely specific shade of white is abstract.]: From this argument it follows that my cousin Bill is abstract, since he is independent of the particular occasions in which he is present. Cousin Bill is transcendent in that he is the invariant of a number of different situations, but he only becomes abstract if he is thought of apart from any situation. But as a concrete existing transcendent he is always in some situation. [But as the plain man would admit, there are an infinite number of points in a line.]: Only if adjacent points are separated by a line. If not, there is no way of getting beyond one point. [A point cannot be thought of as an infinitesimal line, it is something of a different kind, and is not a part of the line in the same sense in which the smaller lines into which it is divided are parts of the line.]: This is misleading. A line can be divided into infinite numbers of smaller lines by


p. 459/14-16 p. 463/3-4 p. 467/29-32

p. 469/11 p. 470/7-8

p. 471/19-24

p. 471/27-29 p. 471/31-34

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repeated halving, which can be done an infinite number of times. [Thus, mathematics may be defined as the science concerned with ‘deduction by logical principles from logical principles’]: See pp. 232-3 and p. 489. [It cannot, however, be maintained that this axiom of reducibility is self-evident.]: It can. [Whether there are any propositions self-evident in the latter sense is a matter for investigation. To recognize that self-evident propositions may require investigation is already to have abandoned the way of self-evidence.]: Suppose we do not agree that it is a matter for investigation? They may be described, which is quite a different matter. discussing the Laws of Thought, [but it is absurd to suppose that there are only three]: Why? [it expresses a theory with regard to the nature of persistent individuality.] ‘a theory’ u/l: It does not. It expresses a necessity, and as such is a fundamental principle of logical thinking. [… We cannot think contradictory propositions, because we see that a thing cannot have at once and not have the same character; and the so-called necessity of thought is really the apprehension of a necessity in the being of things.]: Correct. [It is also misleading to describe them as laws of things since such an expression suggests that they in some way determine what is actual, or given.]: Does it? [Only in the sense that what is actual must also be possible could these principles be regarded as determining what is actual; they do not determine what is actual in so far as it is actual; they in no sense limit the actual to be so-and-so.]: They limit the actual to be a so-and-so. [It is not likely to be denied that these principles are all psychologically self-evident.]: All right, but do you still maintain, as on p. 174, that self-evidence is a relative notion? If so, to what, pray, is psychology relative? [Yet the relation between logic and the other sciences is very close. Were this not the case our discussion of scientific method would have been a sheer irrelevance.]: This


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p. 489/n.1

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implies that logic is closely related to the sciences because Miss Stebbing’s discussion is not irrelevant. [They found it necessary to formulate explicitly the logical principles involved, and in so doing they had to use logical principles. This procedure appears to be circular; in one sense it is circular, but the circularity is not necessarily vicious. There is, however, reason to suppose that Whitehead and Russell aimed at affecting an analysis that did not involve any kind of circularity. This would mean that the primitive propositions of the system exhibited in Principia Mathematica are to be regarded as properly primitive, rather than as undemonstrated propositions.]: The circularity shows that the propositions are, in fact, primitive. [There is a fundamental difference between inference by logical principles from asserted matters of fact, and inference by logical principles from purely logical propositions. The latter cannot be asserted in the same sense as a proposition concerning a matter of fact can be asserted. Thus we may say that we do not assert the truth of mathematics; we assert the validity of the logical structure exhibited by the system of mathematical propositions.]: If logical inference is either inductive or deductive, the second is not logical inference. [… It is for this reason that mathematics cannot be regarded as a system of true propositions; it is a structure.]: Then why, on pp. 230-233, do you say it is a science and deductive? The Principle of Deduction (p. 192) is “what is implied by a true proposition is true”. Since mathematics does not contain true propositions, this Principle does not apply to it. [The problem of the logical justification of induction is not one that need concern the scientist.]: Why not? It should give him sleepless nights. [As Mr. Keynes says: ‘Hume’s statement of the case against induction has never been improved upon; and the successive attempts of philosophers, led by Kant, to discover a transcendental solution have prevented them from meeting the hostile arguments on their own ground and from finding a solution along lines which might, conceivably, have satisfied Hume himself.’]: This seems to suppose that there ought to be a solution.


p. 496/8-10 p. 503/5-6

p. 503/18-20

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[Every modern logician recognizes that the foundation of the theory of induction is to be found in the theory of probability.] noted [Russell came to hold that a table is a class of appearances.]: This is about as near to the truth as a logician can come. Cf. Sartre: ‘L’essence d’un existant … c’est la loi manifeste qui préside à la succession de ses apparitions, c’est la raison de la série.’—L’Être et le Néant, p. 12.92 [the table is not the sort of object which could be directly presented, so that the table could not be referred to demonstratively.]: Sartre: ‘Mais, en definitive, l’essence come raison de la série n’est que le lien des apparitions, c’est à dire elle-même une apparition.’—ibid. p. 12.93 ‘Ce que paraît, en effet, c’est seulement un aspect de l’objet et l’objet est tout entier dans cet aspet et tout entier hors de lui.’—ibid. p. 13.94 [The table, he seems to suppose, is reached by an inference; but all inferences concerning that which is not purely formal, are liable to doubt; hence, he seeks to justify the inference.]: The table is not inferred: it is intended. Cf. Husserl: ‘In unreflective consciousness we are “directed” upon objects, we “intend” them, and reflection reveals this to be an immanent process characteristic of all experience… The perception of a cube, for example, reveals a multiple and synthesized intention: a continuous variety in the “appearance” of the cube… Observation of this “stream” of “appearance-aspects” and of the manner of their synthesis shows that every phase and interval is already in itself a “consciousness of” something, yet in such a way that with the constant entry of new phases the total consciousness, at any moment, lacks not synthetic unity, and is, in fact, a consciousness of one and the same object.’—E.B. article “Phenomenology”.95

92.  B&N, p. xlvi: ‘The essence of an existent … it is the manifest law which presides over the succession of its appearances, it is the principle of the series.’ 93.  B&N, p. xlvi: ‘But essence, as the principle of the series, is definitely only the concatenation of appearances; that is, itself an appearance.’ 94.  B&N, p. xlvii: ‘What appears in fact is only an aspect of the object, and the object is altogether in that aspect and altogether outside of it.’ 95.  E.B. = Encyclopædia Britannica.


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p. 504/15-16 p. 511/25-26

[there can be no doubt that there are tables] u/l: Full marks! [Complete disappearance is incompatible with scientific investigation, just as creation ex nihilo would be.]: What does this mean?

Strachey, Lytton G., Landmarks in French Literature, London: Oxford University Press, 1945 [… Wisdom and poetry are intertwined with flatness and folly; splendid situations drift purposeless to impotent conclusions; brilliant psychology alternates with the grossest indecency and the feeblest puns. ‘O matter and impertinency mixed!’ one is inclined to exclaim at such a spectacle.]: This judgement of Troilus and Cressida comes of failing to observe that the hero of the play is Theisites. It may be a bad play, but it is a philosophical masterpiece.

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p. 37 p. 199/26-31

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p. 235/5-8


Tyrrell, G.N.M., The Personality of Man, Harmondsworth, Penguin Books, 1954 [Possibly intelligence and morality have reached higher standards for limited times in special places; the first, perhaps, in ancient Greece; the second, it might be suggested, in the Britain of to-day.] ‘the second … today.’ noted: Indeed? [MYSTICISM: The highest level of human personality.] noted: Rubbish! [One said: As I emerged from the head I floated up and down and laterally like a soap-bubble attached to the bowl of a pipe.” The other said that he thought to himself: “… Here I am, ball of air in the air, a captive balloon still attached to the earth by a kind of elastic string…”] after ‘string’: Ernest Hemingway tells of a similar experience when he was hit by a mortar bomb during the 1914-1918 war. [One of the chief grounds of objection to survival is the view that all conscious and mental processes are exactly correlated with nervous processes.] noted: This is why emphasis is put on interactionalism (p. 157). There is exact correlation, but it is two-way. [But the main point is that, all the way through, the critics are not arguing that paranormal phenomena are untrue as a matter of fact but that they must be untrue as a matter of


p. 253/9-11

p. 259/34-35

p. 181/10-13

p. 211/3-4 p. 225/1-10

p. 225/25-27

principle.] after ‘principle’: One gets the impression, reading this book, that Tyrrell himself dislikes the possibility of clairvoyance because it would be inconsistent with his theories about telepathy. [They are not ‘white elephants’—scandalous interlopers into law and order which it is superstition even to contemplate.]: A white elephant is a costly and useless possession, not a scandalous interloper. [‘That great philosopher Bacon’, writes Professor Macneile Dixon, ‘could not to the last believe that the earth revolved round the sun.’]: If he was standing on the earth he was right in his opinion. The earth goes round the sun if you stand on the sun. Warner, Rex [transl.], The Confessions of St. Augustine, New York: Mentor-Omega, 1963 [… grave widows and women grown old in virginity, and in them all was Continence herself, not barren but a fruitful mother of children, her joys, by you, Lord, her husband.]: Continence—with a husband! [Men are a race very inquisitive about other people’s lives, very lazy in improving their own.] noted [But it is not easy to say whether this takes place by means of images or not. I pronounce the word “stone” or “sun” when the things themselves are not present to my senses; images of them however are in front of my memory. I pronounce the word for some physical pain; this pain is not present to me, since I am not in pain; but unless the image of it was in my memory, I should not know how to speak of it, and, in any discussion, I should be unable to draw a distinction between it and pleasure.] noted [Can memory itself be present to itself by means of its images rather than by its reality?]: Can I remember a memory?

Wettimuny, R.G. de S., Buddhism and Its Relation to Religion and Science, Colombo: Gunasena, 1962 p. 39/27-40/2 the Buddha taught action without an actor [in his two fundamental doctrines of Impermanence (anicca) and NotSelf-ness (anattåya). The three dimensional “object” of the earlier physics was a mathematical interpretation of the


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concept of Self-ness (attåya) which the Buddha so emphatically rejected, i.e., of a persisting thing.] noted by a wavy line: X p. 45/13-18 [That is, the concept makes out definitely circumscribed identities or entities out of things. But Reality knows no such entities, permits no such circumscribings. Reality is all movement, all action. It is what the Buddha defines as a becoming (bhava).] noted by a wavy line: X p. 45/19-24 [The fact is that all thinking sets in with this opposition to truth, with the accentuation of the is and not with the realization of the basic fact of becoming. And until this basic characteristic of Reality is perceived, nothing of Reality is rightly perceived.]: X This is totally mistaken. p. 56/28-57/3 [The sensations that one receives through his sense organs such as the eye and the ear, always relate to an instant slightly earlier to that of the sensations. “It is the inexorable law of our acquaintance with the external world that that which is presented for knowing becomes transformed in the process of knowing.”] noted with a wavy line: How do you know? p. 137/17-27 [“Just, Khitta, as from a cow comes milk, and from milk, curds, and from curds, butter, and from butter, ghee, and from ghee, junket; but when it is milk it is not called curds, or butter or ghee, or junket; and when it is curds, it is not called by any other name; and so on. For these, Khitta, are merely names, expressions, turns of speech, designations in common use in the world. And of these a Tathågata makes use indeed, but is not led astray by them.” (D⁄gha Nikåya 9)] after ‘and so on’: This omits a passage about, attå, which is what the second part is referring to. p. 138/1-5 [Or, as the Venerable Såriputta pointed out, the word ‘hut’ is merely a convenient designation for various materials put together after a certain fashion so as to circumscribe a portion of space; not that it means there is a hut-entity in existence.]: Why not? There is, at that time, a hut. p. 146/13-15 [The simile given by the Buddha to indicate this movement of the Grasping Groups is that of the burning flame.] ‘by the Buddha’ u/l: Where is this simile? p. 149/3-4 [In each of the Five Grasping Groups is seen an arising and passing away,]: and an invariance under transformation.



Uppådo paññåyati vayo paññåyati †hitassa aññathattaµ paññåyati—Khandha Saµy. no. 37. p. 149/7-19 [“This same Grasping is not those Five Grasping Groups, nor yet is it something apart from those Five Groups.” (Saµyutta Nikåya III). It is “neither the same, nor yet another” (na ca so na ca añño). This same teaching of the Buddha—na ca so na ca añño—is expressed in the words: “The future is never entirely determined by the past, nor is it ever entirely detached.” Just as the flame that now is, is not the same flame that was a moment ago, nor yet is something apart from that flame, but is the result of the growth of that flame, so is it with these Five Groups.] noted by a wavy line: X p. 149/12 [na ca so na ca añño] u/l: This celebrated phrase is not to be found in the Suttas. It occurs in the Milinda. p. 149/27-30 [Things … present themselves exactly as processes which allow of no dissections.]: They do not. p. 152/1-3 [Thereby they make their readers to infer that the Buddha did not say there is no Self.]: The Buddha did not, in fact, say there is no self. To assert there is no self—natthi attåti—is to fall into ucchedavåda. The Buddha said that nothing is self—sabbe dhammå anattå—which is not the same thing. p. 166/10-14 [The five senses—eye, ear, nose, tongue and body, belong to the first Khandha, Form. The sixth sense, mind or thinking, belongs to the next three Khandhas—Sensation, Perception, Mental Tendencies.]: X p. 166/17-23 [“Consciousness and its supporting points are not opposites, but transitions, one the form of development of the other, in which the Saπkhåras represent that transition-moment in which thinking as Vedanå and Saññå, in the glow of friction, is on the point of breaking out into Viññå~a.” (Dahlke).]: X p. 167/13-19 [It is neither the function of a Self nor a fall between two states of potential, but a “process of growth, in which one moment becomes another, passes into another, just as one moment of a flame is neither the same as the next nor yet another, but becomes the next.”]: X p. 168/26-169/15 [For life starts off with the accentuation of the is in the mind and not with the comprehension of the basic fact of becoming. Nothing is. Everything becomes, depending


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on the preceding conditions and the nutriments available. To see the becoming nature of things means to see their Not-Selfness, Becoming, Transient, Not-Self—these are all synonymous …]: X p. 171/3-9 [It is where no such understanding is, that one finds introduced into the Buddha-word also, that gross misconception called “mind-and-matter.” The splitting of Reality into two dissimilar things called mind (on the metaphysical side), and matter (on the physical side), is one of the greatest errors of human thought.] noted and checked p. 176/30-177/1 [With every change in Consciousness there comes about a change in Name-and-Form. This change in Name-andForm in turn conditions a new Consciousness, which latter Consciousness again conditions a new Name-andForm.]: X p. 243/1-4 [This arising and ceasing from its own preceding conditions as a universally applicable law is what flashes forth into the minds of Buddhas] ‘preceding’ u/l: No! p. 302/24-28 [His is a residual Grasping, like the residual burning of the flame which having burnt out all its fuel is now burning towards the end of all burning. The Arahat Grasps only towards the end of all Grasping.] ‘His is a residual Grasping’ and ‘Arahat Grasps’ u/l: ! Saupådisesa nibbånadhåtu is not sa-upådåna. p. 311/22-24 [Certainly, Nibbåna in its second phase is the annihilation of the Grasping Groups (barring of course the Group of Form)]: ! p. 318/17-18 regarding Ven. Khemaka, [In spite of his intellectual acceptance of Not-Self, he still reacts to things with the conceit ‘I am.’] ‘intellectual acceptance’ u/l: He was anågåm⁄! Marginal Notes made in the P.T.S. editions of the Sutta Pi†aka. D⁄gha Nikåya Vol. 1 p. 11/25 :Tathågatassa va~~aµ vadamåno p. 34/2 : våda sato sattassa p. 34/35 [‘Ananto åkåso’ti]: See p. 183. p. 45/n.2 [So all MSS, though they have no corresponding clause in the previous two lists.]: The first half of this paragraph 71 is parallel to paragraph 29 on p. 39. p. 50/8 : ‘Må bhåyi mahåråja, må bhåyi mahåråja.



p. 61/23 p. 63/28 p. 63/29-30 p. 77/8 p. 84/10 p. 84/34 p. 85/29 p. 86/2-4 p. 157/15 p. 165/19 p. 165/20 p. 183/28 p. 200/22 p. 200/28 p. 209/10-11 p. 223/8-9 p. 223/12 p. 223/17 p. 229/3 p. 229/29 p. 230/12 p. 233/6 p. 237/13 p. 237/21 p. 250/31 p. viii/2-9

p. 11/27 p. 34/34 p. 43/28

: vatassåhaµ puññåni : methunå gåma: pa†ivirato hoti saccavådi : manomayaµ abhinimminåya : vimuccati, vimuttasmim ‘vimuttam’ : vimuccati, vimuttasmim ‘vimuttam’ : bahukara~¨ja ti. : See A.ii,4. : åvuso Gotama taµ : såmaµ dakkh⁄ti: Sama~o va : kålavåd⁄ bh¨tavåd⁄ : Åkåsånañcâyatana-sukhuma[?] c/o : mogho atito mogho [nâparaµ itthattåyâti pajånati] c/o : th¨laµ subhasubhaµ? [sabbato pahaµ]: K. pabhaµ. See M.i,329, line 30 and Udåna I,10. Sabbatopahaµ (or °pabhaµ) may be sabbato-apahaµ (or °apabhaµ) from apahoti (or apabhavati [apabhoti]). [Viññå~assa nirodhena]: Anurodha/Pa†ivirodha/Nirodha (See M.i,65). : visesaµ : visesaµ : sukhåyåti : visesaµ [?] c/o [?] c/o [pe] c/o D⁄gha Nikåya Vol. 2 [Those in the Udåna (say 50) and in the Itivuttaka (say 200), though somewhat later, and also the few independent verses in the Vinaya, should also be examined; for though those books, as a whole, are somewhat later, many of the verses they preserve belong to the earlier period. Even so, however, the total number of verses is by no means unmanagable.]: ‘later’, on what grounds? : bhikkhu-sahassåni [vipassanå] c/o: myâyaµ maggo bo: dhammañ ca bhikkhu-saπghañ ca


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p. 62/12-37

noted: Adhivacana—designation, appearance. Pa†igha— resistance, inertia, behaviour. In any experience both are present (i.e. cognized). Whatever appears behaves, and whatever behaves appears (however absently). But how a thing behaves is independent of its appearance, and vice versa. A thing is designated in terms of vedanå, saññå, etc., which make up the nåmakåya. It behaves as pa†hav⁄, åpo, etc., which make up the r¨pakåya. p. 63/3-5 [api nu kho nåmar¨paµ måtu kucchismiµ samucchissathâti?’]: (i) I-[am-]lying-in-the-mother’s-womb. p. 63/8-9 [api nu kho nåmar¨paµ itthattåya abhinibbattissathâti?’]: (ii) I-[am-]being-born-into-the-world. p. 63/12-14 [api nu kho nåmar¨pam vuddhiµ vir¨¬hiµ vepullaµ åpajjissathâti?’]: (iii) I-[am-]a-young-man-about-town. (Cf. NoD, SN, nåma.) p. 63/18-23 [“Nåmar¨papaccayå viññå~aµ … dukkhasamudaya sambhavo paññåyethâti?’]: The argument here (as above—the third paragraph of SN, nåma, the passage “Nåmar¨pa at D⁄gha ii,2 … totality of nåmar¨pa at any time.”) is not cause-and-effect but dhammanvayatå, or the temporal invariability of the Nature of Things: ‘As now, so it was, so it will be’. p. 68/22-24 : The construction is as above—Tad abhiññå vimuttaµ bhikkhuµ [yo evaµ vadeyya], Na jånåti, na passati, iti ’ssa di††h⁄ti tad akallaµ. p. 120/n.4 [Daharå pi ca ye vu∂∂hå … evaµ maccåna j⁄vitaµ.] Cf. Sn. 577-8. p. 188/12-189/8 : I.e. things upon which King Mahåsudassana in various ways depended. With their cessation there was cessation of King M. He was determined by them—only in relation to them could he think of himself as ‘King M.’ at all. More formally those saπkhårå were nåmar¨pa, the condition for phassa upon which sakkåyadi††hi depends. p. 292/1-10 : for ajjhatta and bahiddhå here see p. 216. p. 306/10-15 [manosamphassajaµ]: The Cetosamphassajanti of K, perhaps a better reading? M. iii,250 omits cetasikam dukkhaµ. p. 33/33 p. 109/19-20


D⁄gha Nikåya Vol. 3 : Adhicca-samupanno : dasa pi samva††aviva††åni. ‘Amutrasiµ evaµ nåmo


p. 109/n.5 [Bmr K omit.]: Cf. also Brahmajåla. p. 248/6,18,30, p. 249/11,22-23, and p. 250/2 all corrected to: anavakåso yaµ Majjhima Nikåya Vol. 1 : Idam avoca Bhagavå. Na attamanå te bhikkh¨ Bhagavato bhåsitaµ nåbhinandunti. p. 140/9-11 [Venayiko sama~o Gotamo, sato sattassa ucchedaµ vinåsaµ vibhavaµ paññåpetîti. Yathå vâhaµ bhikkhave na, yathå câhaµ na vadåmi, tathå maµ te bhonto]: “Since I am not [scil. venayiko], and since I do not say [scil. sato sattassa ucchedaµ vinåsaµ vibhavaµ], so …” p. 262/37 : vadåmi: Iti imasmiµ p. 328/31-32 [Yåvatå candimasuriyå pariharanti diså bhanti virocanå tåva sahassadhå loko, ettha te vattat⁄ vaso.]: Not gåthå. Cf. A. i,227; v, 59. p. 329/30-31 [Viññå~aµ anidassanaµ anantaµ sabbatopabhaµ]: See D. i,223, line 12; and Udåna I, 10. p. 417/6 [vihareyyåsi]: Is this right? Cf. p. 98 and A. iii,307. Vijeheyyåsi? Vihåheyyåsi? p. 439/26-32 : bhågavimutto—paññåvimutto—kåyasakkh⁄—di††hi­ ppatto—saddhåvimutto—dhammånusår⁄—saddhånusår⁄, taµ ahaµ … p. 440/17 : satthusåsane sikkhåya aparap¨rap. 497/26-498/1 [Ahaµ hi bho Gotama evaµvåd⁄ evaµdi††hi: sabbaµ me na khamatîti.—Yå pi kho te eså Aggivessana di††hi: sabbaµ me na khamatîti, eså pi te di††hi na khamatîti.—Eså ce me bho Gotama di††hi khameyya taµ p’assa tådisam eva, taµ p’assa tådisam evâti.]: ‘Even if I liked it I should still not like it, I should disapprove of my liking it.’ This is the correct position; from which it follows that it should be given up. But few are consistent in this matter. This view, like all views, is an addiction, and is to be brought to an end; but, tending to self-destruction, it is salutary (sabbaµ me na khamatîti, tesam ayaµ di††hi asårågåya santike asaµyogåya santike anabhinandanåya santike anajjhosånåya santike anupådånåya santike ti—p. 498/18-20) if held consistently. (The contrary view tends to self-preservation and is therefore unsalutary [sabbaµ me khamatîti, tesam ayaµ di††hi sårågåya santike saµyogåya santike abhinandanåya santike ajjhosånåya santike upådånåya santike.—ibid. 14-16].) p. 6/24-25


seeking the path

But so long as the consistent view ‘I like nothing including the view “I like nothing”’ is held, the view cannot be totally destructive. (It cannot get below sakkåyadi††hi.) For absolute consistency and total self-destruction a further movement is necessary, indicated from the outside. Only the Buddhas can give this indication. p. 515/4-8 noted: Ajita Kesakambal⁄. p. 516/3-17 noted: P¨ra~a Kassapa. p. 516/32-517/3 noted: Makkhali Gosåla (see also below). p. 517/18-31 noted: Pakudha Kaccåyana. p. 517/31-518/15 noted: Makkhali Gosåla (see also above). p. 518/4 : D.i,54 inserts satta pavu†åsatåni 96 p. 518/10 [hevaµ natthi]: D.i,54 attaches this to the following sentence. p. 519/13-520/2 noted: Niga~†ha Nåthaputta. p. 523/14-29 : See alternative reading (p. 573) which may be preferred. p. 157/16 p. 228/19-20 p. 230/2 p. 230/30 p. 233/9-10 p. 234/31 p. 239/7 p. 242/15-16 p. 242/23 p. 256/24 p. 261/4 p. 263/26 p. 19/20 p. 20/21

Majjhima Nikåya Vol. 2 [na Pu~~o dabbigåhoti?]: Should this be pu~~o as adj. qualifying dabbigåho? [Sato vå pana sattassa ucchedaµ vinåsaµ vibhavaµ paññå­ penti.]: Cf. M.i,140. : nånattasaññånaµ, n’atthi kiñc⁄ti : aññatra saπkhårehi viññå~assa [sabbe te imån’ eva pañc’åyatanåni]: I.e. the four expanded above and di††hadhammanibbånaµ. : yeva ñå~aµ bhavissati [yaµ bhikkhuµ suvacataraµ maññeyyåtha,]: The bhikkhu that you think is more easily spoken to. : Tathå yaµ bhikkhuµ suvacataraµ : dhammaµ appahåya na nibbånaµ : anuyuttassa, asappåyaµ manaså : cittaµ vå uppådessat⁄ti : pa†isañcikkhati: Suññam idaµ Majjhima Nikåya Vol. 3 [attånaµ phusissant⁄ti? Pa†ipucchå]: See A.i,72-7 for pa†i­ pucchå vin⁄tå pariså. : bhåsitaµ abhinanduµ.

96.  Between pavu†å and satta.



p. 24/12 p. 24/13 p. 45/1-5

p. 80/11 p. 82/23-24 p. 83/20 p. 88/1-2 p. 99/27 p. 103/2 p. 166/11 p. 188/23 p. 188/25-26 p. 227/32-33 p. 227/36 p. 228/19 p. 232/8 p. 232/20 p. 232/30 p. 245/3 p. 245/8 p. 245/12 p. 247/12 p. 250/7 p. 266/5 p. 266/7 p. 266/27

: khave, sappuriso sakkaccadånaµ deti, sahatthå dånaµ deti, cittakatvå dånaµ [parisuddhaµ]: ? See back and also A.iii,171-2 anapaviddhaµ. noted: Compare the passage at S.iv,95. ‘Yena kho åvuso lokasmiµ lokasaññ⁄ hoti lokamån⁄ ayaµ vuccati ariyassa vinaye loko. Kena cåvuso lokasmiµ lokasaññ⁄ hoti lokamån⁄. Cakkhunå … Sotena … Ghånena … Jivhåya … Kåyena … Manena kho åvuso lokasmiµ lokasaññ⁄ hoti lokamån⁄.’ This gives us lokaµ for kiñci, lokasmiµ for kuhiñci, and cakkhunå etc. for kenaci. : puññakkhettaµ lokassa, tathår¨pe : bhikkhave, ånåpånasati? Kathaµ bahul⁄katå mahapphalå hoti mahånisaµså? : ånåpånasati kathaµ: satta bojjhaπgå kathaµ bahul⁄katå : khattiyamahåsålånaµ vå sahavyataµ : devå; Sudasså devå sudass⁄ devå; Akani††hå : Appamattako ayaµ, bhante, : na samanvåneti, : tattha nandiµ na samanvåneti.—Evaµ kho, bhikkhave, anågataµ nappa†ikankhati. : r¨pavipari~åmånuparivatti viññå~aµ hoti, tassa r¨pa­ vipari~å: vighåtavå ca apekhavå ca, anupådåya : pådå cittaµ pariyådåya : kesañci bhavasaµyojanaµ : ananuyuttå h⁄naµ : ananuyuttå dujjhaµ : sabbavedayitåni anabhinanditåni : kåyapariyantikaµ : eva sabbavedayitåni anabhinanditåni : upasampadan ti. [cetasikaµ asåtaµ manosamphassajaµ]: See D.ii,30697— perhaps a better reading? : niccakappana sådhukaµ manasikåtabbaµ: So Sa¬åyatana Saµy. 87 (S.iv,59). : passaddhi; passaddhiyå : nåhaµ, na kho panåhaµ Såriputta, : Do

97.  Which reads: cetasikaµ dukkhaµ cetasikaµ asåtaµ manosamphassajaµ


seeking the path

p. 266/30-31 p. 269/25-29 p. 280/6 p. 297/15

[sa-upavajjo ti vadåmi. Taµ Channassa bhikkhuno n’atthi anupavajjo Channo bhikkhu satthaµ åhares⁄ti.]: Different in Sa¬åyatana Saµy. 87 (S.iv,60). noted: Rather different in S.iv,63. See ref. below. : Idam avoca Bhagavå. Attamano åyasmå : kho me vijjå ca vimutti cåti,—tena

Saµyutta Nikåya Vol. 1 p. 22/last stanza : Cf. A.iii,411. p. 174/6 [punappunaµ aññaµ upeti ra††haµ]: Thag. 531 has dhaññaµ. p. 174/7 [Punappunaµ yâcakâ yâcayanti]: Thag. 532 has yåcanaka caranti. p. 174/10 [punappunaµ saggaµ upeti †hânaµ]: Thag. 532 has upenti. p. 147/

Saµyutta Nikåya Vol. 2 : R¨padhåtu—R¨pa; R¨pasaññå—Pa†ighasam°; R¨pa­ sankappo—Adhivacanasaµ°; R¨pasamphasso—°Phasso; etc.

p. 8/12 p. 8/17 p. 23/§§4-6 p. 50/2 p. 60/2-5 p. 63/6-8 p. 66/8-17 p. 86/16 p. 98/3-8

Saµyutta Nikåya Vol. 4 : dhammå, ayaµ r¨pånaµ åd⁄navo. Yo r¨pesu : dhammånaµ assådo. Yaµ dhammå aniccå dukkhå [bhavasatto]: See Ud. 32-3: From sajjati ‘to cling to’. [sutaµ hoti sabbe dhammå nålaµ]: See A.VIII,vi,8. [imañ ca kåyaµ … etaµ Såriputta dhåreh⁄ti]: Cf. M.iii,266. noted: Rather different in M.iii,269, see ref. above. : Cf. Ud. 32. : dha upådånanirodho, upådånanirodhå bhavanirodho noted: ‘What bases (Magadhism: åyatane for åyatanåni) are, should be known [as being] where both the eye ceases and perception of forms fades out.’ corrected to read as at 98/3-8 [na] c/o [na] c/o : Sakkånam nigamo. [R¨på saddå gandhå raså]: See Sn. 759. See also A.iii,379. : Sukhanti di††ham ariyehi, sakkåyassuparodhanaµ pacca­ n⁄kaµ idaµ hoti, sabbalokena passataµ. : Passa dhammaµ duråjånaµ, sampam¨¬hettha aviddasu : santike na vijånanti, maggådhammass’ akovidå

p. 101/3-5 p. 120/2 p. 120/11 p. 127/§§1.2 p. 127/16 p. 127/20-21 p. 127/24-25 p. 128/2



p. 128/4 p. 132/4 p. 147/11-12 p. 391/9

: nåyam dhammo susambuddho. : Devadahakha~o Saπgayha Dve honti Palåsinå : evaµ passato sakkåyadi††hi [va∂∂haµ natthi paññåpanåyåti]: “Va††am” is perhaps better. At M.i,141, “va††aµ tesaµ natthi paññåpanåyå”.

p. 10 p. 25/9 p. 25/22 p. 25/26 p. 82/32-33

Aπguttara Nikåya Vol. 2 (1955) end of sutta 9: = Sn.iv,740-1. : manaså tam ahaµ jånåm⁄ ti. : dhammesu tådiso yeva, tådi, tamhå ca pana tådi tamhå : Ablative of tådiso. : Na tesu tådisayaµ saµvutesu [na kammantaµ payojeti na kammojaµ gacchati?]: Sinhalese v.l. Kambajaµ (also Commentary reading). [tho samåno iti pa†isañcikkhanti]: Or “tho samåno na iti pa†isañcikkhanti”? : Idha bhikkhave bhikkhu s⁄lavå hoti … samå: lånaµ dhammånaµ … pe … upasampadåya] thåmavå da¬haparak-

p. 188/29 p. 251/17 p. 251/22 p. 178/8 p. 189/15 p. 189/23 p. 285/17 p. 347 p. 362/13 p. 363/17 p. 411 p. 411/27 p. 443/20 p. 367/4 p. 403/9-13 p. 403/25-30 p. 422/16-17

Aπguttara Nikåya Vol. 3 : vitthårena paraµ våcenti : peyya anuddayaµ yeva : upa††håpetabbaµ anuddayaµ yeva [jåya samapatto viharati]: Ariyå hi visame samå (S.II,i,7). end of gåthå: = Thag. 689-704 : vitthårena paraµ våceti : †hånå asapattibhi~iveså issariyapariyosånå ti. gathå: Cf. S.i,22 [Phassanirodhå bhikkhave kåmanirodho. Ayaµ eva]: So phassanirodhå on pp. 412-16. : Sabbasaπkhåresu ca me tibbå bhayasaññå paccupa††hita Aπguttara Nikåya Vol. 4 : te ca kasirena and beginning [evañ ca kho åvuso Candikåputta] c/o [neva saññånåsaññåyatanam p’ahaµ bhikkhave nissåya åsavånaµ khayaµ vadåmi] c/o


seeking the path

p. 425/4 : bhikkhave nissåya p. 428/10 : ñå~ena p. 429/6 and 10 [ñå~avådånaµ]: Or nånåvådånaµ? p. 429/18 and 20 [;] c/o p. 432/10 [bh⁄tå] bracketed and c/o with light pencil lines p. 59/8 p. 59/8-9 p. 59/17 p. 63/29-30 p. 342 to 347 verse number 165a 281-283 653

Aπguttara Nikåya Vol. 5 [bhanti virocanå, tavå sahassadhå loko]: So M.i,328; A.i,227. [sahassadhåloke]: This word is omitted in A.i,227 q.v. [bhikkhave sahassilokadhåtu]: See A.i,228. [yad idaµ ’no c’assaµ, no ca me siyå, na bhavissåmi, na me bhavissat⁄’ti.]: In M.106 (M.ii,265) ‘No c’assa, no ca me siyå, na bhavissati, na me bhavissati …’ : This Sutta is in the Majjhima Nikåya. Sutta Nipåta

: Enijaµghaµ kisaµ viraµ appåhåraµ : = A.iv,172 : I.e. Kammaµ pa†icca kassako hoti, sippiko hoti, etc. ‘What one is depends on what one does’. [kammavipåkakovidå]: The result of acting in a certain way is that one is known accordingly. For vipåka in this sense cf. A.iii,413 Vohåravepakkåhaµ bhikkhave saññå vadåmi, etc. 661 : Ud.iv,8 740-741 : A.ii,10 reads addhånaµ for addhåna and ta~hånaµ for ta~hå. See Iti.109. 755a : ar¨pesu asa~†hitå: So Iti.III,i,2 (Iti 45) 2nd line following v. 755: [… samårakassa sabrahmakassa sassama~abråhma~iya 759 [raså gandhå]: S.iv,127 inverts these two. See also A.iii,379. 764 : bhavasotånusåribhi. 785 gåthå noted: See 954b. Nirassati ∼ nirattam (787c); ådiyati ∼ attaµ (787c): line 785b seems to qualify dhammaµ in line 785d. 954b : See 785d 1050c to 1051c : equals 728. 1106 [th⁄nassa (ca)]: Ca omitted at A.i,134.



p. 6/29 p. 7/7 p. 7/26 p. 8/4-12 p. 8/25 p. 9 p. 10/10 p. 11/23 p. 12/5 p. 12/18 p. 12/27 p. 23/28 p. 24/27 p. 25/7 p. 31/25 p. 32/16 p. 32/29-32 p. 32/29-30 p. 33/11 p. 33/14 p. 33/18 p. 36/1 p. 37/1 p. 37/4 p. 37/6 p. 40/11 p. 41/20+26 p. 41/21 p. 42/12+17 p. 43/8 p. 44/8 p. 44/30 p. 45/10-12 p. 45/14 p. 45/28

Udåna Bâhiyassa Dârucîriyassa rahogatassa pa†isall⁄nassa evaµ cetaso : atha ke carohi : guttam yatindriyaµ någaµ, (corrected at L. 121 (v) [2.vi.1965]; see Sa¬åyatana Saµy x,2 (iv,73)). : sar⁄rakaµ ga~hitvå mañcakaµ bottom of page: Every Udåna in this vagga contains the word bråhma~a. : ∂aµsamakasavåtåtapasiriµsapasaµ: ta~hakkhayasukhass’ ete kalaµ : sukhakåmåni bh¨tåni yo da~∂ena : rosenti vihesenti atha : vihesent⁄ti : devatå abhikkantåya : maññe macchevilope ’ti : maññe macchevilope ’ti : katarasippaµ sippånaµ aggan ti : hatvå månaµ ekacaro : For these two lines cf. S.iv,23. : vadati atthato, yena yena hi maññati tato taµ hoti aññathå. Being and Time, p. 231/5-13. : upadh⁄ hi : bhavå aparimuttå : vibhavaµ nåbhinandati : vitakko ’ti tassa mayaµ : yå : appicchakathå santu††hikathå pavivekakathå asam: evar¨påya : ava††håsi addaså : hatthikalabhehi : hatthicchåpehi : hatthikalabhehi hatthacchåpehi : bhattasmiµ panthañ ca : jakå: vo-di††hå : rosenti vihesenti: : Sn. p. 128 : vihesenti, te : asaññatå sarehi saπgåmagetaµ


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p. 48/12 p. 50/18 p. 51/14 p. 53/26 p. 56/11 p. 58/18 p. 59/21 p. 59/27 p. 59/33 p. 63/20 p. 65/9 p. 66/7 p. 69/9 p. 70/27 p. 71/11 p. 71/30 p. 74/22 p. 75/5 p. 75/27 p. 76/9 p. 76/26-27 p. 79/26 p. 81/6-10 p. 81/7 p. 81/22 p. 86/27 p. 91/10 p. 91/30-31 p. 92/8 p. 93/12

: bhavissanti te våpi sabbe : ni††hubhitvå apasavyaµ karitvå : sace bhåyatha dukkhassa sace vo : Aciravat⁄ Sarabh¨ Mah⁄ : cattåro sammappadhånå : sace maµ upajjhåyo bhagavå : So~aµ ajjhesi: pa†ibhåtu taµ bhikkhu dhammaµ bhåsitun : vissa††håya ana¬agalåya atthassa. : dhammaµ nir¨padhiµ. : vin⁄tå visåradapattayogakkhemå : acela satta ca ekaså†ake satta ca : pacchå såpayissåmi : mu††h⁄hi saµsubhiµsu : pa†ikacca passato : na jåtumet⁄ : upa††hånaµ sårå, ayam eko anto ye ca : maññamåno : acchecchi va††aµvyagå niråsaµ : sammattakajåtå kåmesu [pamattabandhunå bhandå]: Or baddhå? : See Cittasaµyutta. [sassariva]: Or sassati viya. : Cf. M.144 : sati nati na hoti, natiyå asati : bhagavatå dhammiyå kathåya sandassito : dhikara~aµ [saddhiµicaraµ ekato vasaµ misso aññajanena vedag¨]: “aññajanena”—“ignorant”. : avivittå (Såvatth⁄ pi) bhante såvatthi(yå) manussehi [yesaµ v⁄sati piyåni v⁄sati]: Or v⁄sam. between lines 17 and 18 is inserted: atha kho : abhedi kåyo, nirodhå saññå, vedanå s⁄tibhaviµsu sabbå

Itivutakka II,v,9 (44.1) : bho ayaµ attå kåyassa bhedå II,vii,3 (53-54) : See Devatå Saµy.ii,10 (S.i,8-12). vv 689-704 vv 995-996a


Theragåthå : = A.iii, 346-7. : M.i,501 / M.74.


Miscellany A collection of various loose papers

The usual reason given for saying that nibbåna is anattå, is simply that there is clearly no attå in nibbåna, that nibbåna is void of attå. It is only on the surface that this seems to be true. A closer inspection shows it involves one or other of two misconceptions. If it is taken together with the fact that the five aggregates are void of attå, it implies that the five aggregates and nibbåna are on the same level. But nibbåna is, in fact, void of the five aggregates. If it is taken together with the fact that nibbåna is void of the five aggregates, it implies that attå and the five aggregates are on the same level. But the five aggregates (which are real) are, in fact, void of attå (which is imaginary). Upan⁄yati loko addhuvo ti. Attå~o loko anabhissaro ti. Assako loko sabbaµ pahåya gaman⁄yan ti. ¨no loko atitto ta~hådåso ti. (Ra††hapåla Sutta – M.82/ii,68) Transient is the world, unstable. Without shelter is the world, without an overlord. Not one’s own is the world, having put all away one must go. Wanting is the world, insatiate, a/the slave to/of craving. Eye is old action, it should be known and seen, having been determined and intended. Dependent arising has neither duration nor instantaneity: it is, as it were, the gradient of the curve of existence taken over an infinitesimally short period. At any time, thus, it describes what is now happening. ‘Chaque dimension est une façon de se projeter vainement vers le Soi, d’être ce qu’on est par delà un néant, une manière différente d’être ce flêchisse-


seeking the path

ment d’être, cette frustration d’être que le Pour-soi a à être.’1 (L’Être et le Néant, p. 183) Nåmar¨pa = r¨pa and r¨pa-given-r¨pa [nåma] repetition of this is r¨pa and r-g-r and r + r-g-r given r + r-g-r. [r-g-r is not-r] nåmar¨pa which is r¨pa and r¨pa-given-r¨pa and r-g-r2 and (r-g-r given r-g-r). This now is asserted afresh, wherefore r-given-r is r’ (i.e. not-r, but on the same level). Given the straightforward hierarchy of experience. In Immediate Experience attention rests on the world. This requires no effort. In Reflexive Experience attention moves back one step in the hierarchy. It does not, however, move back spontaneously: it requires to be pulled back by an intention that sees both the fundamental (or ground) level and the first step. This intention is located on the second step. A deliberate intention to enter upon reflexion requires a further intention on the third step; for deliberate intention is intention to intend (= volition). Double attention is involved. But though, in Immediate Experience, attention rests at ground level, the entire hierarchy remains ‘potential’ (it is there, but not attended to), and Immediate Experience is always under potential reflexive observation (i.e. it is ‘seen’ but not ‘noticed’). The added complication of ‘self’ is not, despite philosophical opinion, an essential feature of this structure. Sartre’s reflet-reflétant (p. 118) is a brave (but inadequate3) effort to describe the structure of ‘self’; but he is quite wrong to reject Spinoza’s idea-ideae-ideae-…to infinity. In the puthujjana both are found. Suppose that the principle of self-reflexion is false. If the principle of selfreflexion is false it follows that the statement, ‘To demonstrate that the principle of self-reflexion is necessarily true it is essential to show that the supposition of its falsity assumes its truth’ is false: for the statement assumes the truth of the principle of self-reflexion. Is it necessarily true that a true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself? There are three possibilities: 1.  ‘Each dimension is the For-itself’s way of projecting itself vainly toward the Self, of being what it is beyond a nothingness, a different way of being this fall of being, this frustration of being which the For-itself has to be.’ (B&N, p. 137) 2.  But r-g-r without r given, itself is r (i.e. asserted by itself). 3.  S.’s ‘Self’ is an ‘itself’, not a ‘myself’ – an objective ‘self’ instead of subjective ‘self’. A mere negative is not enough.



1. A true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself. 2. A true unrestricted proposition is not an argument to itself. 3. A true unrestricted proposition may not be an argument to itself. If 2, then ‘“A true unrestricted proposition is not an argument to itself” is an argument to itself’ is not an argument to itself… ad inf. This alternation is to be rejected since it is evident that a true unrestricted proposition can be an argument to itself. It is enough to produce one true unrestricted proposition that is necessarily true, i.e. a tautology, e.g. ‘“A positive proposition is an assertion” is an assertion’… If 3, then ‘A true unrestricted proposition may not be an argument to itself’ may not be an argument to itself. There are now two possibilities: (i) ‘A true unrestricted proposition may not be an argument to itself’ is not an argument to itself. In this case we cannot say ‘“A true unrestricted proposition may not be an argument to itself” may not be an argument to itself’; (ii) ‘A true unrestricted proposition may not be an argument to itself’ is an argument to itself. In this case ‘a true unrestricted proposition may not be an argument to itself’ may not be an argument to itself. But we cannot say this since it is an argument to itself. Therefore 1. It is in the nature of a true unrestricted proposition that it is an argument to itself. A true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself. If a true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself, then ‘A true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself’ is an argument to itself. A proposition is true. If a proposition is true, then ‘A proposition is true’ is true. No contradiction. A proposition is false. If a proposition is false, then ‘A proposition is false’ is false. Contradiction. Is ‘a true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself’ an argument to itself? ‘A true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself’ is an argument to itself if there is no contradiction in asserting that a true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself. There is only no contradiction if there is no true unrestricted proposition that is not an argument to itself, i.e. is it self-evident that a true unrestricted proposition is an argument to itself? Suppose the contrary: ‘A true unrestricted proposition is not an argument to itself’. If a true to unrestricted proposition is not an argument to itself then ‘A true unrestricted proposition is not an argument to itself’ is not an argument to itself. But if it is not an argument to itself then it is not true


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that a true unrestricted proposition is not an argument to itself. Answer—It may not be an argument to itself. ‘Whenever, as individual, a general proposition is in the class of those objects of which it treats, but cannot be considered as an argument to itself, it is either false or restricted in scope. If the second, its range of argument must be specified. Accordingly, we can state as a necessary condition for the truth of a general proposition whose scope is unspecified, that when it has a character that is one of the characters about which it speaks, it must be an argument to itself… Conformity to this condition indicates that the unrestricted proposition is possibly true. To demonstrate that such proposition was necessarily true, it would be essential to show that the supposition of its falsity assumes its truth.’ ‘An unrestricted proposition applies to every member of the category, and has some aspect of itself as value. It is in some sense, then, a determinate in the category that it determines. If the proposition refers to some other category than the one to which it, as fact, or some aspect of it, as fact, belongs, it is restricted. Thus “all men are mortal” is neither man nor mortal and, as condition, does not determine itself as fact.’ ‘Accordingly we shall say: All true unrestricted propositions are arguments to themselves; or, by transposition, those propositions that are not argument to themselves are either restricted or false. As this proposition can take itself as argument, it is possibly true. Unless no proposition is possible that does not conform to it, it cannot be said to be necessarily true. I have not been able to demonstrate this…’ (Abbreviated extract from an article ‘The Theory of Types’, by Paul Weiss in Mind Vol. XXXVII, N.S., No. 147) If, in order to demonstrate that the principle of self-reflexion (as we may call it)—or, indeed, any other unrestricted proposition—is necessarily true, it is enough to show that the supposition of its falsity assumes its truth, then the principle of self-reflexion is necessarily true. For we assume its truth to prove its truth. [N.B. The next sentence is an unrestricted proposition.] ‘Everything that the human race has done and thought is concerned with the satisfaction of felt needs and the assuagement of pain. One has to keep this constantly in mind if one wishes to understand spiritual movements and their development. Feeling and desire are the motive forces behind all human endeavour and human creation, in however exalted a guise the latter may present itself to us.’ (A. Einstein, The World As I See It)



‘It is only the highest intellectual power, what we may call genius, that attains to this degree of intensity, making all time and existence its theme, and striving to express its peculiar conception of the world, whether it contemplates life as the subject of poetry or of philosophy. Hence undisturbed occupation with himself, his own thoughts and works, is a matter of urgent necessity to such a man; solitude is welcome, leisure is the highest good, and everything else is unnecessary, nay, even burdensome. ‘This is the only type of man of whom it can be said that his centre of gravity is entirely in himself; which explains why it is that people of this sort—and they are very rare—no matter how excellent their character may be, do not show that warm and unlimited interest in friends, family, and the community in general, of which others are so often capable; for if they have only themselves they are not inconsolable for the loss of everything else. This gives an isolation to their character, which is all the more effective since other people never really quite satisfy them, as being, on the whole, of a different nature: nay more, since this difference is constantly forcing itself upon their notice, they get accustomed to move about amongst mankind as alien beings, and in thinking of humanity in general, they say they instead of we.’ (A. Schopenhauer, The Wisdom of Life) ‘Psychical research is the experimental study of the supernormal faculties (real or supposed) of human personality. The word “supernormal” is merely an equivalent for “not recognized by general scientific opinion” and is free of all implications of “supernatural”.’ (Article ‘Psychical Research’, Encyclopædia Britannica) ‘Our task is not that of deducing the rational but of describing the conceivable, or that which comes with Evidenz as incontrovertably given. ‘It is important to realise the fundamental position of probability in science. At very best, induction and analogy give only probability. Every inference worthy of the name is inductive, therefore all inferred knowledge is at best probable.’ B. R.[ussell] Outline of Philosophy, 1927-41, p. 285. All things obey the Laws of Science, except when they don’t. ‘J’étais contente de me remettre à la philosophie. Je restais aussi sensible que dans mon enfance à l’étrangete de ma présence sur cette terre qui sortait d’ou? J’y pensais souvent, avec stupeur, et sur mes carnete je m’interrogeais; il me semblait etre dupe « d’un tour de prestidigitation dont le truc est enfantin,


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mais qu’on n’arrive pas à deviner ».’—Simone de Beauvoir, Mémoires d’une Jeune Fille Rangée, Paris: Gallimard, 1958, pp. 221-2.4 ‘Si donc on prend le mot exister en un sens univogue, il faut affirmer qu’en tant que les choses sensibles existent, les lois n’existent pas (ou inversement).’— G. Marcel, Journal Métaphysique, Paris: Gallimard, 1935, p. 18.5 ‘It is not well to stay for age, in travelling on the Way. Do not the graves of early youth cry loud against delay. When unheralded sickness grips a man and the world forsakes him then he begins to taste the pangs of unavailing regret for the irretrievable.’ (from The Yen-rin no Juin) ‘If an author borrows an idea from some other author without naming his source, and proceeds perhaps to make a perverted use of the borrowed idea, this is by no means an intrusion. But if he names his author, perhaps even with admiration, as a source of the perverted idea, he creates a most embarrassing situation.’ S.K. CUP, p. 5. ‘Our own affirmative attitude toward the world and toward life threatens constantly to externalize Christianity.’ A. Schweitzer, Out of My Life and Thoughts. ‘Why do so few “scientists” ever look at the evidence for telepathy, socalled? Becasue they think, as a leading biologist, now dead, once said to me, that even if such a thing were true, scientists ought to band together to keep it suppressed and concealed. It would undo the uniformity of nature and all sorts of other things without which scientists cannot carry on their pursuits.’ William James, The Will to Believe, pp. 10-11.

4.  ‘I was glad to get back to philosophy. I was still just as sensible as in my childhood of the strangeness of my presence on this earth, which had come—whence? Which was going—whither? I often thought about it, with amazement, and in my notebooks I questioned myself; it seemed to me that I was the victim “of a piece of sleight of hand whose trick is childish but which we can’t manage to pin down”.’ 5.  ‘If then we take the word to exist in an unequivocal sense we have to maintain that to the extent that perceptible things exist laws do not exist (or vice versa).’



‘The connection between theoretical, i.e. speculative, philosophy and the philosophy of life has become very tenuous in modern British and American thought. One finds a growing and general acceptance of the thesis that philosophy as practised here has little or nothing to do with the practical problems of life—a feeling which has undoubtedly been the spur for the coming of the various philosophies of existentialism on the Continent by way of reaction, and their enthusiastic espousal by many sensitive people.’ Karl H. Potter, Presuppositions of India’s Philosophies, Prentice-Hall Inc. Englewood Cliffs, N.J., 1963, p. 45. Karl H. Potter Ph.D. Harvard Univ. is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Minnesota. Twice recipient of Fulbright grants for study in India. Dr. Potter is general editor of the forthcoming Encyclopedia of Indian Philosophy. Graecum est: non legitur.

Note on Catupa†isambhidå The Four Departments/Discriminations


1. ATTHAº—(Identification of) REFERENT. (a) When communication is not involved:—Selection of relevant, and rejection of irrelevant, signs (any event mental or material, perceiving which we think of something else, is a sign; the ‘something else’ is the referent and, ultimately, is an expectation/expected6 event) until the completion of a context/pattern of events becomes clear. (N.B. Some relevant signs will be remote both in time and place. Signs may be mental or material.) (Primary) interpretation of the sign situation. [I sweat on a warm Tuesday. Referent: Activation of sweat glands by heat—Tuesday is not a relevant sign (or is not a sign).] (b) When communication is involved:—Expansion of symbol (symbols are signs as words or gestures in rational communication) until sign-situation behind the symbolized reference/communication becomes clear. (Primary) interpretation of the symbol situation. (See Meaning of Meaning, Canon III.) interpretation of symbols Cf. N⁄tattho—Unqualified or literal (Aπg. II,iii,5-6 [A.i,60]). Neyyattho—Qualified or provisional Etam atthaµ viditvå—having grasped/felt/known (see 2. Cf. below) the interpretation of/the (sign or symbol) situation. (Udåna, passim) 6.  Not necessarily future or even temporal.


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Ime dhammå ekatthå vyañjanameva nånanti—these things are one in referent/interpretation and various only in the letter. (Citta Saµy. 1 [S.iv,281]). Suggested translations. Technical: (Identification of) Referent. (Primary) Interpretation of the sign/symbol situation. Literary: Interpretation. [Bespoke for upaparikkhati?] Meaning [convenient but vague]. Significance. Sense. 2. DHAMMAº—(Correct) REFERENCE. Allotting of interpretations of signs or symbols to the proper context. Seeing the wider significance of interpreted sign or symbol situations (events or communications), in particular in the context of the Buddha’s Teaching. Cf. Atthaµ na jånåti. Dhammaµ na passati.—He does not know the referent/interpretation. He does not see the reference/idea. Suggested translations. Technical: (Correct) Reference. Literary: (True) Ideas. 3. NIRUTTIº—(Knowledge of) SYMBOLS. Knowledge of actual and conventional usage of symbols to symbolize and communicate reference. Awareness of the general or individual reaction to words and gestures. Cf. D. 15—Nirutti is equivalent to adhivacana (expression) and paññatti (denotation). M. 139—Janapadanirutti—Local usage, dialect. Suggested translations. Technical: (Knowledge of) Symbols. Verbal usage. Literary: Language. Speech. Dialect. [‘Expression’, already bespoke by adhivacana, is condemned in Meaning of Meaning.] 4. PA˝IBHÅNAº—(Appropriate) SYMBOLIZATION. Ability to symbolize reference by appropriate words and gestures. Perspicuous expression of ideas. Cf. Yuttapa†ibhåno—Pertinent perspicuity, Muttapa†ibhåno—Fluent perspicuity (Aπguttara IV,xiv,2 [A.ii,135])



Appa†ibhåno—Without perspicuity, tongue-tied (M. 152) Suggested translations. Technical: (Appropriate) Symbolization. Literary: Perspicuity. [Query: how to translate pa†ibhåti. Pa†ibhåti maµ Bhagavå … pa†ibhåtu taµ Vaπg⁄sa (Vaπg⁄sathera Saµy. 5 [S.i,188]).] Dhammå pi maµ na pa†ibhanti (Khandha Saµy. ix,2 [S.iii,106]).

* Dvayanissito khvåyaµ Kaccåyana loko yebhuyyena atthitañ ceva natthitañ ca. Lokasamudayaµ kho Kaccåyana yathåbh¨taµ sammappaññåya passato yå loke natthitå så na hoti: lokanirodhaµ kho Kaccåyana yathåbh¨taµ sammappaññåya passato yå loke atthitå så na hoti. Nidåna/Abhisamaya Saµy. 15 (S.ii,17) Atthitå ceases when cessation of the world is seen Yathåbh¨taµ, i.e. when cessation is seen to occur with cessation of conditions. Natthitå ceases when arising of the world is seen Yathåbh¨taµ, i.e. when arising is seen to occur with arising of conditions. Therefore:— Atthitå is the view that the world arises or continues, even though conditions have ceased. Natthitå is the view that the world ceases, even though conditions arise or continue. Therefore: (i) Where there is no world (i.e. pañcakkhandhå) one cannot say ‘Atth⁄ti’. (ii) Where there are no conditions (i.e. rågadosamoha) one cannot say ‘Natth⁄ti’. But:— (i) In ‘one who has passed away’ (atthangato) there are no five khandhas. (After anupådisesa.) (ii) In ‘one who has passed away’ there is no rågadosamoha. (Before anupådisesa.) Therefore: In ‘one who has passed away’ there is nothing whereby one might say either (i) Atth⁄ti, or (ii) Natth⁄ti. Sabbesu dhammesu sam¨hatesu Sam¨hatå vådapathå pi sabbe may then easily be understood as follows:— ‘When all phenomena (both (i) paccuppannå dhammå [five khandhas] and (ii) paccayas [rågadosamoha]) have been removed, all ways of saying (both atth⁄ti and natth⁄ti), too, have been removed.


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For there to be contact, inertia must be felt; the datum must be perceived; but the feeling and the perception must be specific (and this is designationcontact). And vice versa, for there to be contact feeling must possess inertia, it must endure; and perception must have a datum, there must be something that is perceived; but the inertia and the datum must be specific (and this is resistance-contact). Any inertia and datum can be specifically felt and perceived (a specific pleasant blue light can endure for any length of time); and any feeling and perception can have a specific inertia and datum (a specific alternation of long and short can be any pleasant or unpleasant coloured light). But for contact, both must be specific, and thus both designation and resistance are needed. Whence by you, Båhiya, then seen shall be merely seen. Thence you, Båhiya, will not be that by which [the seen]—i.e. the perceiver. Thence you, Båhiya, will not be that where [= therein (the seen)]—i.e. the conceiver. Thence you, Båhiya, will not be here [the perceiver], nor beyond [the conceiver], nor between both [the (visual) cognizer (or seer)]. Perception is by which. The Perceiver is that by which. Conception is where. The Conceiver is that where [‘where’ in the sense of a bare datum]. Perception and Conception is by which there, or nåmañca r¨pañca (adhi­ vacana-pa†igha). tena = taµ yena yena = by which tattha = taµ yattha yattha = where Yena and yattha fulfil each other and do not require a taµ in addition—i.e. there is the percept and the concept but no perceiver or conceiver. Yato te Båhiya di††he di††hamattaµ bhavissati … tato tvaµ Båhiya na tena Thence Båhiya there will not be that visible object [in the world complete with negatives] of zero visibility by reason of which you are perceived [as visible]. (Can end of perception [and conception (as subjectivity of the world)] form a point of view?) Tato tvaµ Båhiya na tattha Thence Båhiya there will not be an ‘in the world’ [of that said visible object (the said object of zero visibility is nothing beyond ‘that which is



in the world’)] by reason of which you are conceived [as the subjectivity of the world] Tato tvaµ Båhiya n’ev’idha na huraµ na ubhaya… Thence Båhiya there will be no visible object of zero visibility (here) or non-world (beyond) or both combined (i.e., the world); by reason of all of which you are conceived as the visible subjectivity of the world. N.B. I am the subjectivity of the world (i.e. that part of the world that is missing) The eye is the polarity of the world (the visible eye is au ________ du monde) Whence by you, Båhiya, the seen shall be merely seen. Thence, Båhiya, there will not be that in the world by reason of which you are perceived and conceived as possessor or subjectivity of the world (i.e. the world is perceived and conceived as yours). Thence, Båhiya, you will not be engaged in the world (since there will be neither you nor the world). Thence, Båhiya, you will not locate yourself here, or there, or in between. Thence, Båhiya, there will not be that whereby you are perceived. Thence, Båhiya, there will not be that wherein you are conceived. The eye is a determinate partial structure (as is also the world). The total structure is indeterminate, i.e. a contradiction (attå). [The contradiction being, precisely, that the determinate, and therefore impermanent, structure is permanent.] The eye is negative nåma-r¨pa (yena-loko) (tena-tattha) (perceptionconception) Perception and conception (determinate) become the Perceiver and the Conceiver in the contradiction—i.e. the former are the condition (tena/ tattha) for the latter. R¨pa is the (arahat’s) non-world. Cakkhu is the distortion of this (polarization). Cakkhuviññå~aµ is the world (a matter of degree).



Review of E. Baptist’s pamphlet

Ånåpånasati and The Brahmavihåras Cattåro Brahma Vihårå: Meditation on 4 Sublime States by Egerton C. Baptist, Vesak 1955 from: Buddha Jayanti, 4th July 1955, pp. 3-6 and passim. The purpose of Mr. Baptist’s short pamphlet is to introduce the practice of meditation on the four brahmavihåras—mettå, karunå, muditå, and upekhå—to laymen, and to young folk in particular. The practice of meditation should certainly be encouraged; it is the hightest kind of meritorious action; and without it the final goal cannot be achieved. But if it is not correctly taught it is better not taught at all: a snake caught by the tail will turn and bite the hand that grasps it. Mr. Baptist offers the brahmavihåras as a meditation that ‘brings quick and immediate results’—‘Otherwise’, he says ‘the younger generation, in particular, would not be interested’. Other kinds of meditation (and he singles out ånåpånasati for particular mention) ‘are elaborate and tedious and exact a great deal of time and energy’. Perhaps it is true that the younger generation demands quick results. Perhaps it is not true. But to suggest that there is a short cut to ‘results’ in meditation is most certainly false. The degree of ‘results’ in meditation correctly practised is roughly proportional to the time and energy devoted to it, no matter what kind of meditation is chosen. Mettåbhåvanå, slightly practised, leads to a slight removal of thoughts of anger; much practised, to considerable removal of thoughts of anger; completely practised, it leads to absorption (jhåna); asubhabhåvanå (meditation on the foul) slightly practised, leads to a slight removal of thoughts of lust; much practised, to a considerable removal of thoughts of lust; completely practised, it leads to absorption; ånåpånasati, slightly practised, leads to a slight removal of all evil thoughts; much practised, to a considerable removal of all evil thoughts; completely practised, it leads to absorption. And absorption (without which nibbåna or extinction cannot be realized) is no more quickly attained by one method


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than by another. There are no get-rich-quick methods in the Buddha’s teaching, and to suggest that there are is to sow the seeds of disappointment and discouragement. Mr. Baptist contends that the brahmavihåras are less elaborate than other forms of meditation, and the brevity of his instructions for their practice may seem to bear him out. But in fact he is mistaken. If instructions for the practice of ånåpånasati are reduced to this one sentence ‘Fix your attention on the passage of the breath in and out of the nose’, it might well be argued that ånåpånasati is the simpler. And it is perhaps worthy of note that the detailed exposition of the brahmavihåras in the Visuddhi Magga is actually a little longer than the corresponding exposition of ånåpånasati meditation (30 pages as opposed to 27 in the P.T.S. edition). Mr. Baptist’s account of the brahmavihåras has in fact sacrificed precision to brevity; and his rather generalized instructions are too vague to be a satisfactory practical guide, especially for beginners, who need fairly detailed indications to get themselves started. Reference to Chapter IX of the Visuddhi Magga will make this point clear. But not only are these instructions of his inadequate: they are also positively misleading. Mr. Baptist says: ‘Then concentrate thoughts of goodwill on to yourself, saturating your whole being with thoughts of love and goodwill. The idea here being that it is possible to transmit thoughts of love to the outer world only if you yourself are full of love within. Thereafter concentrate your thoughts upon ideas of loving-kindness and imagine a ray of love going out from your heart (which is now full of love), and embracing all beings in the Eastern Quarter of the world.’ This suggests that we are to charge ourselves, like some kind of storage battery, with love; and then, being fully charged, to radiate it, as it were the light from a lighthouse, in various directions. In the first place, the purpose of starting the meditation by thinking kindly thoughts towards oneself is certainly not in order to ‘saturate your whole being with thoughts of love’. The Visuddhi Magga says: ‘He who cultivates the wish, ‘May I be well!’ appeals to himself as testimony that ‘as I wish to be happy, have a distaste for misery, wish to live, do not wish to die, so other beings also wish for the same’’.’ In other words, what you propose to wish for others you must first wish for yourself; for, if you wish for others what you do not sincerely wish for yourself, your thoughts cannot be entirely free from some trace of illwill. It is a safety measure to ensure that you really are wishing well, and not ill, to others. In the second place, there is no question of actually broadcasting or transmitting thoughts of mettå like wireless or light waves (the phenomenon of telepathy has nothing to do with the physical propagation of waves). In


review of e. baptist’s pamphlet

the Suttas all four brahmavihåras are treated in the same way; and if we insist that mettå can be sent out in rays (which is perhaps conceivable by a stretch of imagination) then we must allow the same of upekhå (and a ‘ray of indifference’ is not conceivable), for the same word, pharati, is used of both. The Visuddhi Magga defines pharati as ‘to make an object of’: and in fact the word really means no more than ‘to think about’. In other words, instead of flashing all-embracing rays of love (or indifference, as the case may be) to the six points of space, we simply think about beings in these various directions and say to ourselves, ‘May they be well’. It should be noted that Mr. Baptist confines indifference to ‘indifference towards all evil beings’. This is a curious limitation, without any apparent justification, and the Visuddhi Magga (quoting the Vibhanga) says: ‘As, on seeing a person neither lovable nor unlovable, he would be even-minded, so he considers (pharati) all beings with even-mindedness’. Indifference is to be practised towards all beings, good or evil. Without our going into further detail, it may be said that the purpose of the brahmavihåra meditation is not to benefit or improve other people by directing our mettå and so forth toward them (though some such effect is possible in certain cases) but, in the first place, to rid ourselves of illwill, cruelty, envy, and partiality, and in the second, to develop concentration so that insight may be successfully practised. So much for the brahmavihåras. What about Mr. Baptist and ånåpånasati? The Foreword (not written by Mr. Baptist) states that ånåpånasati ‘entails a primary basis of an ascetical moral make-up’ and ‘involves absolute mindfulness and control of breathing (our italics).’ Mr. Baptist himself says not only that it is elaborate and tedious and exacts a great deal of time and energy (points we have already touched upon) but that ‘it is not easy to practise as it involves the leading of a very pure, celibate life, free from stress and strife’. And in a letter to the Ceylon Observer (4th June 1955) he says: ‘To meditate, following the ånåpånasati system, one should be a brahmachariya—this is what elementary yoga teaches. Laymen can hardly be expected to lead brahmachari lives. Can they then be expected to practise this difficult form of meditation without grave danger to their health?’ This is largely nonsense. Ånåpånasati does not involve control of breathing; it is no more elaborate or tedious than any other form of meditation (and probably less so); and though indeed some degree of s⁄la is necessary—as for all meditation—, it is not true that one must be a brahmachari to practise it—there are many laymen, married and single, who have long practised ånåpånasati and have derived much benefit from it without in any way injuring their health. Mr. Baptist takes elementary yoga as his authority;


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but does he not know that there is no ånåpånasati in the yoga systems? The breathing exercises of yoga—pranayama as they are called—are quite a different affair, which do involve control of the breath and, for all we know, the most fearful bodily afflictions for any non-brahmachari who presumes to practise them. (‘By the practice of Pranayama one is freed from all diseases. By mistaken course of Yoga, the Yogin brings upon himself all diseases’—Hatha Yoga Pradipika, II, 16.) Ånåpånasati consists in the paying of constant mental attention to the natural breath as it comes and goes; and whether we do ånåpånasati or not we still continue to breathe in the same way. Where, then, is the threat to health? In fairness to Mr. Baptist it must be said that he is not the first to tell us of the horrid effects of this kind of meditation—we have been warned, before now, that the practice of ånåpånasati leads to such diseases as diabetes and consumption. Let us end with the Buddha’s own words: ‘When one cultivates and makes much of the concentration on inbreathing and out-breathing, there is no wavering or shaking of body, no wavering or shaking of mind.’ (Kindred Sayings, Vol V., p. 280). ‘Wherefore, monks, if a monk should desire: May neither my body nor my eyes be fatigued, and by not clinging may my mind be freed from the åsavas,—he must give strict attention to this same intent concentration on in-breathing and out-breathing.’ —Ibid., p. 281. ‘Monks, this intent concentration on in-breathing and out-breathing, if cultivated and made much of, is something peaceful and choice, something perfect in itself, and a pleasant way of living too. Moreover it allays evil, unprofitable states that have arisen and makes them vanish in a moment.’ —Ibid., p. 285.

Ñå~av⁄ra Bhikkhu


review of e. baptist’s pamphlet

[Letter to the Editor, Buddha Jayanti, 15th October 1955] Ånåpånasati and the Brahmavihåras Sir, In Mr. Egerton Baptist’s reply (C. B. J. 15/9/55) to my review of his pamphlet he disagrees with my statement that telepathy has nothing to do with the physical propagation of waves. To support his point he speaks of the electroencephalograph, an instrument that measures the electrical rhythms of the brain. These rhythms or ‘brain waves’ he maintains, are synonymous with ‘thought-waves’. An eminent authority on electroencephalography, Dr. W. Grey Walter1 of the Burden Neurological Institute, Bristol, who has himself pioneered most of the developments in this branch of science in Great Britain during the last twenty years, and who is an editor of the International EEG Journal, is actually one of the sources for my assertion. On p. 175 of his book The Living Brain (Duckworth, 1953), he says that all investigations hitherto of the functioning of the brain have entirely failed to account for telepathy or allied phenomena. It has ‘often been suggested’ he continues ‘that … electrical sensitivity of the brain might be a means of communicating with some all-pervading influence. Quite apart from any philosophic objection there may be to such an argument, the actual scale and properties of the brain’s electrical mechanisms offer no support for it.’ And he goes on to say that since neither distance nor intervening obstacles appear to make the slightest difference to the strength of messages received telepathically the phenomena cannot be explained by the laws of matter as we now formulate them. I should, perhaps, make it clear that I am not denying the effects, sometimes considerable, that thoughts of mettå have on other living beings: What I am denying is that such thoughts are transmitted by any wave mechanism known to modern science. To say that ‘brain waves’ and ‘thought waves’ are synonymous is to confuse mind and matter, nåma and r¨pa, two items that the Buddha takes good care to distinguish. Mr. Baptist also says that I and certain other monks living in my temple are of the opinion that the Venerable Buddhaghosa was a worldling. Though I said nothing of this in my review, Mr. Baptist is correctly informed. Our source for this opinion is the Venerable Buddhaghosa himself, who, at the conclusion of the Visuddhi Magga, says:

1.  Guy Walter erected the first autonomous robotic animals, and he became recognized as a founding father of cybernetics.


seeking the path

‘By these, the merit and the deed, may I in my next birth in Tåvatiµsa heaven delight in virtuous behaviour, not cleaving to the five delights of sense, but gaining the first fruit.’ If the Venerable Buddhaghosa aspires to become sotåpanna in his next life, it does not seem unreasonable to assume he was a worldling in this; and since he aspires to rebirth in Tåvatiµsa, it is quite possible that he had not even attained jhåna here. But this is not to say that his writings are not an authority on the Buddha’s teaching. They do not merely represent his own personal view, but the traditional view of the Mahåvihåra at Anurådhapura. This traditional view, though not infallible, must surely be allowed some credit. Since part of the material in Mr. Baptist’s original pamphlet is based on the Visuddhi Magga, presumably he, too, holds that book as to some degree authoritative. The rest of Mr. Baptist’s reply must take care of itself.

Ñå~av⁄ra Bhikkhu


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Early Writings (Seeking the Path - Ñāṇavīra Thera)  

Part B includes two early essays (Nibbana and Anatta and Sketch for a Proof of Rebirth) as well as notes from a Commonplace Book and Margina...

Early Writings (Seeking the Path - Ñāṇavīra Thera)  

Part B includes two early essays (Nibbana and Anatta and Sketch for a Proof of Rebirth) as well as notes from a Commonplace Book and Margina...

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