XIX. Purification by Overcoming Doubt¶
598 Knowledge established by overcoming doubt about the three divisions of time by means of discerning the conditions of that same mentality-materiality is called “purification by overcoming doubt.”
2 Ways of Discerning Cause and Condition¶
§2 The bhikkhu who wants to accomplish this sets about seeking the cause and condition for that mentality-materiality; just as when a skilled physician encounters a disease he seeks its origin, or just as when a compassionate man sees a tender little child lying on its back in the road he wonders who its parents are.
2.1 1. Neither Created by a Creator nor Causeless¶
§3 To begin with, he considers thus: “Firstly this mentality-materiality is not causeless, because if that were so, it would follow that [having no causes to differentiate it,] it would be identical everywhere always and for all. It has no Overlord, etc., because of the non-existence of any Overlord, etc. (XVI.85), over and above mentality-materiality. And because, if people then argue that mentality-materiality itself is its Overlord, etc., then it follows that their mentality-materiality, which they call the Overlord, etc., would itself be causeless. Consequently there must be a cause and a condition for it. What are they?”
§4 Having thus directed his attention to mentality-materiality’s cause and condition, he first discerns the cause and condition for the material body in this way: “When this body is born it is not born inside a blue, red or white lotus or water-lily, etc., or inside a store of jewels or pearls, etc.; on the contrary, like a worm in rotting flesh, in a rotting corpse, in rotting dough, in a drain, in a cesspool, etc., it is born in between the receptacle for undigested food and the receptacle for digested food, behind the belly lining, in front of the backbone, surrounded by the bowel and the entrails, in a place that is stinking, disgusting, repulsive, and extremely cramped, being itself stinking, disgusting, and repulsive. When it is born thus, its causes (root-causes) are the four things, namely, ignorance, craving, clinging, and kamma,
599 since it is they that bring about its birth; and nutriment is its condition, since it is that that consolidates it. So five things constitute its cause and condition. And of these, the three beginning with ignorance are the decisive-support for this body, as the [622/680] mother is for her infant, and kamma begets it, as the father does the child; and nutriment sustains it, as the wet-nurse does the infant.”
2.2 2. Its Occurance is Always Due to Conditions¶
§5 After discerning the material body’s conditions in this way, he again discerns the mental body in the way beginning: “Due to eye and to visible object eye-consciousness arises” ( [S] II 72 ; [M] I 111 ). When he has thus seen that the occurrence of mentality-materiality is due to conditions, then he sees that, as now, so in the past too its occurrence was due to conditions, and in the future too its occurrence will be due to conditions.
§6 When he sees it in this way, all his uncertainty is abandoned, that is to say, the five kinds of uncertainty about the past stated thus: “Was I in the past? Was I not in the past? What was I in the past? How was I in the past? Having been what, what was I in the past?” ( [M] I 8 ), and also the five kinds of uncertainty about the future stated thus: “Shall I be in the future? Shall I not be in the future? What shall I be in the future? How shall I be in the future? Having been what, what shall I be in the future?” ( [M] I 8 ); and also the six kinds of uncertainty about the present stated thus: “Am I? Am I not? What am I? How am I? Whence will this being have come? Whither will it be bound?” ( [M] I 8 ).
2.3 3. General and Particular Conditions¶
§7 Another sees the conditions for mentality as two-fold, according to what is common to all and to what is not common to all, and that for materiality as fourfold, according to kamma, and so on.
§8 The condition for mentality is twofold, as that which is common to all and that which is not common to all. Herein, the six doors beginning with the eye and the six objects beginning with visible data are a condition-common-to-all for mentality because the occurrence of all kinds [of mentality] classified as profitable, etc., is due to that [condition]. But attention, etc., are not common to all; for wise attention, hearing the Good Dhamma, etc., are a condition only for the profitable,
600 while the opposite kinds are a condition for the unprofitable. Kamma, etc., are a condition for the resultant mentality; and the life-continuum, etc., are a condition for the functional.
§9 Kamma, consciousness, temperature, and nutriment constitute this fourfold condition for materiality beginning with kamma. Herein it is only when it is past that kamma is a condition for kamma-originated materiality; consciousness is a condition, when it is arising, for consciousness-originated materiality. Temperature and nutriment are conditions at the instant (moment) of their presence for temperature-originated and nutriment-originated materiality. 
[623/681] This is how one man discerns the conditions for mentality-materiality.
§10 When he has seen that the occurrence of mentality-materiality is due to conditions in this way, he sees also that, as now, so too in the past its occurrence was due to conditions, and in the future its occurrence will be due to conditions. When he sees it in this way, his uncertainty about the three periods of time is abandoned in the way already stated.
2.4 4. Dependent Origination in Reverse Order¶
§11 Another, when he has seen that the formations called mentality-materiality arrive at aging and that those that have aged dissolve, discerns mentality-materiality’s conditions by means of dependent origination in reverse order in this way: “This is called aging-and-death of formations; it comes to be when there is birth, and birth when there is becoming, and becoming when there is clinging, and clinging when there is craving, and craving when there is feeling, and feeling when there is contact, and contact when there is the sixfold base, and the sixfold base when there is mentality-materiality, and mentality-materiality when there is consciousness, and consciousness when there are formations, and formations when there is ignorance.” Then his uncertainty is abandoned in the way already stated.
2.5 5. Dependent Origination in Direct Order¶
§12 Another discerns mentality-materiality’s conditions by means of dependent origination in direct order as already shown (XVII.29) in detail, doing so in this way: “So, with ignorance as condition there are formations” ( [M] I 261 ). Then his uncertainty is abandoned in the way already stated.
2.6 6. Kamma and Kamma-Result¶
§13 Another discerns mentality-materiality’s conditions by means of the round of kamma and the round of kamma-result in this way:
“In the previous kamma-process becoming there is delusion, which is ignorance; there is accumulation, which is formations; there is attachment, which is craving; there is embracing, which is clinging; there is volition, which is becoming; thus [624/682] these five things in the previous kamma-process becoming are conditions for rebirth-linking here [in the present becoming].
“Here [in the present becoming] there is rebirth-linking, which is consciousness; there is descent [into the womb], which is mentality-materiality; there is sensitivity, which is sense base; there is what is touched, which is contact; there is what is felt, which is feeling; thus these five things here in the [present] rebirth-process becoming have their conditions in kamma done in the past.
“Here [in the present becoming] with the maturing of the bases there is delusion, which is ignorance; there is accumulation, which is formations; there is attachment, which is craving; there is embracing, which is clinging; there is volition, which is becoming; thus these five things here in the [present] kamma-process becoming are conditions for rebirth-linking in the future.
“In the future there is rebirth-linking, which is consciousness; there is descent [into the womb], which is mentality-materiality; there is sensitivity, which is sense base; there is what is touched, which is contact; there is what is felt, which is feeling; thus these five things in the future rebirth-process becoming have their conditions in kamma done here [in the present becoming]” ( [Paṭis] I 52 ).
Of these, (i) the volition, either profitable or unprofitable, of the first of the seven impulsion consciousnesses in a single cognitive series of impulsions is called kamma to be experienced here and now: it gives its result in this same [625/683] selfhood. But if it cannot do so, it is called (iv) lapsed kamma (ahosi-kamma), according to the triad described thus, “There has been (ahosi) kamma, there has been no kamma-result, there will be no kamma-result” (see [Paṭis] II 78 ). (ii) The volition of the seventh impulsion that accomplishes its purpose is called kamma to be experienced on rebirth: it gives its result in the next selfhood. If it cannot do so, it is called (iv) lapsed kamma in the way already described. (iii) The volition of the five impulsions between these two is called kamma to be experienced in some subsequent becoming: it gives its result in the future when it gets the opportunity, and however long the round of rebirths continues it never becomes lapsed kamma.
Herein, (v) when there is weighty and unweighty kamma, the weightier, whether profitable or unprofitable, whether kamma consisting in matricide or kamma of the exalted spheres, takes precedence in ripening. (vi) Likewise, when there is habitual and unhabitual kamma, the more habitual, whether consisting in good or bad conduct, takes precedence in ripening. (vii) Death-threshold kamma is that remembered at the time of death; for when a man near death can remember [kamma], he is born according to that. (viii) Kamma not included in the foregoing three kinds that has been often repeated is called kamma [stored up] by being performed. This brings about rebirth-linking if other kinds fail.
§16 Another fourfold classification of kamma is this: productive, consolidating, frustrating, and supplanting.  [626/684] Herein, (ix) what is called productive is both profitable and unprofitable. It produces the material and immaterial aggregates both at rebirth-linking and during the course of an existence. (x) Consolidating kamma cannot produce result, but when result has already been produced in the provision of rebirth-linking by other kamma, it consolidates the pleasure or pain that arises and makes it last. (xi) And when result has already been produced in the provision of rebirth-linking by other kamma, frustrating kamma frustrates and obstructs the pleasure or pain that arises and does not allow it to last. (xii) Supplanting kamma is itself both profitable and unprofitable;
602 and it supplants other, weaker kamma, prevents its resulting and usurps that kamma’s opportunity in order to cause its own result. But when the opportunity has thus been furnished by the [other] kamma, it is that [supplanting kamma’s] result that is called arisen. 
§17 The succession of kamma and its result in the twelve classes of kamma is clear in its true nature only to the Buddhas’ “knowledge of kamma and its result,” which knowledge is not shared by disciples.  But the succession of kamma and its result can be known in part by one practicing insight. That is why this explanation of difference in kamma shows only the mere headings.
This is how one man discerns mentality-materiality by means of the round of kamma and the round of kamma-result, applying this twelve-fold kamma classification to the round of kamma.
§18 When he has thus seen by means of the round of kamma and the round of kamma-result how mentality-materiality’s occurrence is due to a condition, he sees that as now, so in the past, its occurrence was due to a condition by means of the round of kamma and the round of kamma-result, and that in the future its occurrence will be due to a condition by means of the round of kamma and the round of kamma-result. This is kamma and kamma-result, the round of kamma and the round of kamma-result, the occurrence of kamma and the occurrence of [627/685] kamma-result, the continuity of kamma and the continuity of kamma-result, action and the fruit of action:
2.7 7. No Doer Apart from Kamma and Result¶
In all kinds of becoming, generation, destiny, station, and abode there appears only mentality-materiality, which occurs by means of linking of cause with fruit. He sees no doer over and above the doing, no experiencer of the result over and above the occurrence of the result. But he sees clearly with right understanding that the wise say “doer” when there is doing and “experiencer” when there is experiencing simply as a mode of common usage.
§20 Hence the Ancients said:
3 Full-Understanding of the Known¶
§21 When he has discerned the conditions of mentality-materiality in this way by means of the round of kamma and the round of kamma-result, and has abandoned uncertainty about the three periods of time, then all past, future and present states are understood by him in accordance with death and rebirth-linking. This is his full-understanding of the known (see XX.3).
§22 He understands thus: “Aggregates produced in the past with kamma as condition ceased there too. But other aggregates are produced in this becoming with past kamma as their condition, although there is no single thing that has come over from the past becoming to this becoming. And aggregates produced in this becoming with kamma as their condition will cease. And in the future becoming other aggregates will be produced, although no single thing will go over from this becoming to the future becoming.
“Furthermore, just as, while the recitation from the teacher’s mouth does not enter into the pupil’s mouth, yet recitation does not because of that fail to take place in the pupil’s mouth—and while the potion drunk by the proxy does not enter the sick man’s stomach, yet the sickness does not because of that fail to be cured—and while the arrangement of the ornaments on the face does not pass over to the reflection of the face in the looking glass, yet the arrangement of the ornaments does not because of that fail to appear—and while the flame of a lamp does not move over from one wick to another, yet the flame does not because of that fail to be produced—so too, while nothing whatever moves over from the past becoming to this becoming, or from this to the future becoming,
604 yet [629/687] aggregates, bases, and elements do not fail to be produced here with aggregates, bases, and elements in the past becoming as their condition, or in the future becoming with aggregates, bases, and elements here as their condition.”
§24 When all states are understood by him thus in accordance with death and rebirth-linking, his knowledge of discerning the conditions of mentality-materiality is sound in all its aspects and the sixteen kinds of doubt are more effectively abandoned. And not only that, but the eight kinds of doubt that occur in the way beginning thus, “He is doubtful about the Master” ( [A] III 248 ; [Dhs] §1004 ) are abandoned too, and the sixty-two kinds of views are suppressed (See DN 1 and MN 102).
§25 The knowledge that has been established by the overcoming of doubt about the three periods of time by discerning the conditions of mentality-materiality according to the various methods should be understood as “purification by overcoming doubt.” Other terms for it are “knowledge of the relations of states” and “correct knowledge” and “right vision.”
§26 For this is said: “Understanding of discernment of conditions thus, ‘Ignorance is a condition, formations are conditionally arisen, and both these states are conditionally arisen,’ is knowledge of the causal relationship of states” ( [Paṭis] I 50 ). And:
“When he brings to mind as impermanent, what states does he correctly know and see? How is there right seeing? How, by inference from that, are all formations clearly seen as impermanent? Wherein is doubt abandoned? When he brings to mind as painful … When he brings to mind as not-self, what states does he correctly know and see? … Wherein is doubt abandoned?
“When he brings to mind as impermanent, he correctly knows and sees the sign. Hence ‘right seeing’ is said. Thus, by inference from that, all formations are clearly seen as impermanent. Herein doubt is abandoned. When he brings to mind as painful, he correctly knows and sees occurrence. Hence … When he brings to mind as not-self, he correctly knows and sees the sign and occurrence. Hence ‘right seeing’ is said. Thus, by inference from that, all states are clearly seen as not-self. Herein doubt is abandoned. [630/688] “Correct knowledge and right seeing and overcoming of doubt
605 —are these things different in meaning and different in the letter or are they one in meaning and only the letter is different? Correct knowledge and right seeing and overcoming of doubt—these things are one in meaning and only the letter is different” ( [Paṭis] II 62f. ).
§27 When a man practicing insight has become possessed of this knowledge, he has found comfort in the Buddhas’ Dispensation, he has found a foothold, he is certain of his destiny, he is called a “lesser stream-enterer.”
The nineteenth chapter called “The Description of Purification by Overcoming Doubt” in the Treatise on the Development of Understanding in the Path of Purification composed for the purpose of gladdening good people.