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Vancaka(cheating) dhammas

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#1 RobertK



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Posted 27 May 2006 - 04:29 AM


The Pali is from the Nettippakaranaatthakatha,

The 'vangceti's only appear there (and nowhere else); even there its only as just small phrases without explanations. Examples and notes are from a Sri Lankan monk who was well versed in all three pitakas,[Ven. R. Chandavimala(1897-1997)], written in 1947.

In the preface the venerable says:
" There are 38 vangcaka dhammas are mentioned in netthippakarana atthakatha. But they are mentioned only namely. There are two tikas for the atthakatha but vangcaka dhammas are not mentioned in any of them."

" These arise in a mind that has developed a certain disliking towards akusalas. The akusala dhammas disguise themselves according to the mind's 'tendency' or mentality,(as the mud gets the shape of the object that pressed onto it.)"

In the book, the venerable describes the dhammas namely mentioned in the atthakatha, and describes more dhammas using his knowledge in the abhidhamma. First , the ones from the atthakatha:

1. apatikkulasagnamukhena kamacchando vangcethi

One develops the apatikkula sanna - looking at every living or non-living object in the same perspective. Whether the dhathu in his body, in an alien body, rocks, trees, young body, decayed body,... start to look the same. He has no disgust in the things that are disgusting to others.( phlegm,urine etc...) They look just like collections of dhathus to him. He will attend to the ones in need of help, without [being] disgusted [with] the filth.

But Kamacchanda will disguise itself as apatikkulasanna. One has liking to the praise, profits etc .. gained by helping people. (But he knows this kamacchada is a bad quality in him.) When there's a person in need, and others do not reach him because of the patikula things associated with helping, there's a chance that in the former's mind the kamacchanda will arise, and he helps the person without feeling any disgust. But he thinks that apatikkula sanna has arose. It is indeed real hard to distinguish the kusala from the akusala. The only catch is to see whether this 'apatikkula sanna' is still there when the praises and profits are not associated with the helping.

Another occasion is, a person may not feel disgust of the phlegm,urine, etc. (you know the lot) of another person he has some raaga for. The person knows that raaga is 'bad' and apatikkula sanna is 'good', he tends to think that what he has is the apatikkula sanna. But what he 'gives in' (and gladly develops) is none other than kamacchanda. As above the catch is to see whether this 'apatikkula sanna' prevails with regarding a person who he has no raaga for.

2. patikkulasanna pathirupena vyapado vancethi

One develops patikkula sanna with regarding to dhathus; (this helps to fight with excessive Raga). Whatever regarded beautiful in the normal sense, appears filthy to him; (eg. the glowing teeth of a pretty person will look as melon seeds glued to the mouth of an empty clay pot)

But vyapada will disguise as patikkulasanna. One knows vyapada is 'bad' and knows that there's a good thing called patikkula sanna. He will sometimes develop the raw vyapada , thinking that what he has is patikkula sanna. [story of sour grapes..] So checking is needed.

3. samadhimukhena thinamiddhang vangcethi

When one is trying to concentrate, without moving the body, viriya decreases. ( the tendency of the untrained mind is towards kamaraaga, not towards samadhi ) So thinamiddha arises, the one who mistakes this as samadhi gives in to it . (so cheated)

4. viriyarambhamukhena uddhaccang vangcethi

One over-tries to calm the mind, over-tries to understand things he thinks that he's developing viriya, but instead he's cheated by uddhacca.

5. sikkhakamathamukhena kukkuccang vangcethi

One who likes for moral restraint has the kusala - sikkhakamatha. But when one starts to worry about the things done, thinking whether they were allowed, not-allowed, etc., will develop the dvesha(dosa) rooted santhapa. Eventually kukkucca, mistaking it for sikkhakamatha.

6. ubhayapakkha santhiranamukhena vicikicchang vangchethi

This dhamma is profound, and expands into large areas ie, merits/demerits, kamma, rebirth, world systems, beings, jhanas etc... This is initially 'too much' for an untrained mind, limited mind - (to see the micro-organisms use of a microscope is needed, can't do it with the naked eye). So there are more things to develop mentally and physically. One feels that ' I have to know all the reasons, all the scenarios, all the logic,...then I'll start going along the noble path' ... he mistakes this for the kusala dhamma ubhayapakkha santhirana, but its none other than the vicikiccha. His development stops, he starts to worry about things that will not lead to progress. Vicikiccha (in true appearence or in disguise) is unavoidable and a great obstacle. Beings have to develop more and more saddha to fight with and find out vicikiccha. (saddha indriya)

7. ittanitta samuppekkhana mukhena sammoho vangceti.

The kusala dhamma ittanitta samuppekkhana - untrained mind takes pride, delights, etc. in 'itta' happenings, (fame, gains,praise etc... ) and will entertain anger, hatred towards 'unitta' happenings.(fear, shame, blame, sorrow etc..) The mind without tanha, conceit stays unwavered and steady in all occasions. This quality is complete only in arahants, but can be there in a certain degree in puthujjanas and sekhas.

But sometimes, simply because failing to understand the true nature of particular itta and anitta happenings, one stays 'unwavered' and calm. He might think that this is his kusala , but that is the sammoha akusala dhamma.

8. attagnuta mukhena attani aparibhavena maano vangceti.

The kusala dhamma attagnuta - taking good care of one self , looking after oneself, taking the full responsibility of oneself with reasoning is a kusala dhamma praised by buddha in many occasions. But the akusala maana can cheat by taking the shape of that quality,one can mistake this attani aparibhavena maana in him for the former kusala dhamma and let it develop.

9. vimansa mukhena hetupatirupaka pariggahena miccaditthi vanceti.

Kusala - vimansa (inquiry?) is related to panna, vimansa is a very useful 'tool'. This is praised by the buddha. The obstacle here is the limitations in one's self. Due to these inherited limitations one can be cheated .

Who stands on a ditthi (either samma or micca) will begin to see many conditions that supports his ditthi; [when one believes in god, when inquiring, he will see supporting 'facts' for it.... when one does not believe in a god he will see supporting 'facts' for it... when one has attasanna ( soul-perception) , he will when one has anattasanna...when one believes in kamma , rebirth... when one does not believe in kamma, rebirth...]

So the micca ditthi akusala dhamma will cheat as the vimansa kusala dhamma, it will show solid 'facts' (hetupatirupaka pariggahena)

10. virattatha patirupakena satthesu adayapanththa vangceti.

Kusala - virattatha , this is non-attachment , non-bondedness to spouses,offsprings,siblings,friends etc. This kusala is triggered from not having the love and care for them but seeing the danger in the samsara; (greater samsara bhaya). The akusala adayapanatha is that feeling no (duty of) care, responsibility for others. One who has the desire to develop kusalas, can mistake this akusala as the former kusala, and can try to develop the disguised akusala.

The point here is to know the kusala as the kusala , and the akusala as the akusala.So one cannot get cheated by akusala.

11. anunnatha patisevana patirupathaya kamasukhallikanuyogo vangceti

In the Order , Buddha has allowed certain 'allowances' so the holylife can be lived smoothly and effectively (ie civara , pindapatha, senasana, gilanapaccaya). This has to be done with restraint and responsibility. Anunnatha patisevana is the kusala that the 'consuming' is only done with the 'allowed' and 'recommended'. But in some occasions priority may waver.One may only concentrate on what is allowed and not allowed. And when some'thing' is allowed, he would give full throttle for it. His priority is not living the holylife effectively , but to make full use of the 'allowances'. Due to the 'fear' of akusala, he thinks that this is the skill of anunnatha patisevana, but its none other than the disguised kamasukhallikanuyoga. In the lay life, the person who is cheated by kamasukhallikanuyoga ( he does not recognize that this is kamasukhallikanuyoga) begins to think.."in many occasions the buddha has adviced and allowed the lay people to earn righteously, live comfortably, have and look after children........." and he will dive into sensuality. He misses the point here and stops himself from ( the possibility of ) attaining the noble fruits of the very hard-earned human life.

12. ajivaparisuddhi patirupathaya asamvibhaga seelatha vangceti.

It is the way of the Noble Order that there should be 'sharing of the resources.' The monks who are more successful in receiving alms share it with the brethen who are less-successful.

Ajiva parisuddhi is , not having anything to do with dusseela (who lacks moral restraint ), alajji (who have no shame in doing unskillful unmeritorious deeds ) people. Asamvibhaga seelatha is, not sharing/giving anything to others, liking to consume everything by oneself. This may cheat as the ajiva parisuddhi -- ie.." Oh, I have no business with those alajji, dusseela ones. If I share these , then my ajiva parisuddhi will be in danger" So checking is needed. Prejudice must be chased away from the play.

#2 RobertK



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Posted 27 May 2006 - 04:30 AM

13. samvibhaga seelata patirupataya miccajivo vangceti.

'Sharing of the resources' is the recommended way in the noble order. This is the skill 'samvibhaga seelata'. But it is not allowed for a monk to give to laypeople other than the gifts of the dhamma( dhammadanas). Sometimes monks tend to gift laypeople with the commodities received as alms., to please them.( so , as they are please with monks , they will more and more aims in return) But this is miccajiva. A monk can 'feel' making the laypeople please by giving material gifts and worldly gifts is samvibhaga seelatha, but its miccajiva( wrong livelihood?) In this occcasion the lay followers get pleased and entertain a liking and friendship with the monk, but the point is this type of particular dhammas can be associated with even a thief/criminal who helps them, does favourable things for them. This may appear to build confidence in the lay followers' minds but its is a type of tanha associated with piti. (sapitika tanha). As always the idea here is to distinguish between the kusala and the akusala. No patigha should be entertained when the akusala is detected.

14. asamsaggaviharata patirupataya asamgahaseelata vangceti

The kusala asamsagga viharata is , not mixing up with the unsuitable, unallowed. For the monks , mixing up with the lay followers is unsuitable. Mixing in the sense, doing the unskillful talks ( the 32, ie..rajakata, corakata ..), frivoulous gossip..etc. Asamsagga viharata is a quality that should be developed by monks/yogins. The akusala asamgahaseelata - not doing anything for, ignoring the lay followers altogether. Not giving common courtesy, not gifting with dhamma etc. So this asamgaha seelatha can be mistaken for the asamsaggaviharata. This type of internal cheat happens mostly to the yogins who have gone forth with a lot of confidence, who are diligent in observing the holylife. So this type of akusala must be carefully detected.

15. samgaha seelata patirupataya ananulomika samsagga vangceti.
Kusala samgahaseelata - gifting the (lay ..etc)followers with the dhamma, gifting the allowed ( brethern..) with helpful 'materials' , acting with amity for everyone, acting with compassion for the others..... This samgahaseelatha is a quality developed by samana/yogins.

Akusala ananulomikasamsagga - the mixing up with unallowed, unsuitable and affairs therein.

The cheating of ananulomikasamsagga as samgahaseelatha happens not in the minds of crooks but ones who are thinking that they are actually developing a kusala. This can be detected as: One will 'feel' like much metta and samgahaseelatha for some rich followers, the people ( spouse,offsprings, etc..) of such followers. But He won't feel that with the poor ones.

When cheated ,the tendency to liking the worldly affairs , taking part in them etc .. with those rich ones , can be detected. With 'real' samgahaseelatha those would not arise.

16. saccavadita patirupataya pisunavacata vangceti.

saccavadita - speaking the truth, no lies, no half-truths.
pisunavacata- slandering

Regardless of the truth or fallacy in it, slandering is akusala and miccavaca. Sometimes ones who do slandering , internally get cheated as thinking ' this is the quality of telling the truth and that is a kusala ' .

17. apisunavadita patirupataya anatthakamata vangceti.

The evil of slandering is the intention to mess with the common understanding of a one with another. It is not a 'papakamma' to tell warn about a person ( or rather the evil qualities of such person ) to another for the well being of the 'another'. It is a good quality to warn ( and protect ) somebody from a possible harm.( a sappurisa quality ) Intention is the key here. Being 'silent' in such an occation 'thinking' " I will not say pisunavaca..." is a stage which needs to be further examined. In some minds there is this very minute 'anusaya dhatu' left that they sometimes have the secret delight in seeing harm happening to others.
Anatthakamatha..... ( anattha - harm ). This cheats them. The point here is to check whether what's operating is genuine apisunavacata or a cheating akusala. ( and to be aware of the kusala as kusala , and the akusala as akusala )

18. piyavadita patirupataya catukammata vangceti

kusala piyavadita - when communicating with others it should be done in a pleasant , unharmful way.

akusala catukammata - talking to please others in order to get favours, get the liking towards oneself. Some go to the extent of insulting, degrading oneself to keep the others on the higher position, so to please them. This can cheat as piyavadita.

19. mitabhanata patirupataya asammodana seelata vangceti

kusala mitabhanata - talking only as needed, with great care. Most probably this results in less and less talk.

akusala asammodana seelata - hating others, not having the tendency to develop metta. This akusala may cheat as mitabhanata.

20. sammodana seelata patirupataya maya satheyyangca vangceti

kusala sammodana seelata - communicating pleasently with others with metta.

akusala maya - hiding own defilements and bad qualities

akusala satheyya - showing off that one has the good qualities that he doesnt have.

One who has the intention to hide own faults talks about people who have that fault condemning them.So the listeners think that this 'guy' doesnt have such faults. One who likes to say that he has such and such (non-existant) good qualities, praises those qualities and advices others to have such good qualities, so the listeners may assume that this 'guy' must have such good qualities.

This maya and satheyya can cheat in the disguise of sammodana seelata.

21. niggahavadita patirupataya parusavacata vangceti

kusala niggahavadita - Condemning wrongful actions done by a person who is under the care ( ie student ), [focus is on the action not the person] as a help for guiding the person. [ by 'harshly' condemning the wrong action ]

akusala parusavacata - this is using of harsh words. The internal tendency and the delight in using harsh words may cheat as niggahavadita.So the condemning with harsh words will focus on the person rather than on the deed. The point is to see whether , the arisen dhamma is either a kusala or an akusala, and being honest in understanding it.

22. papagarahita patirupataya paravajjanupassita vangceti

kusala papagarahata - this is again condemning the evil deeds. And it is not done by aversion towards the evil deed or the evil doer . Papagarahata is used (even) by the Buddha.

But some people may entertain dosa for the evil deeds done by others. And this is a severe akusala ( to let develop) on the part of the former. They give in for lot of dosa regarding others and their evil deeds., thereby abusing their own mind. Some may have the (hidden) tendency to search for others' wrong doings and the subsequent condemnation. This is the akusala of liking to condemn others - paravajjanupassita. and not the condemning of evils without dosa towards the deed or the doer.(papagarahata)

And again the point is to find and be aware of any hidden akusala dhammas.

(I am not very sure about whether 'condemn' is the right english word for the pali 'garaha' and 'niggaha'...or is it 'insulting'?)


#3 RobertK



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Posted 27 May 2006 - 04:30 AM

23. kulanuddayata patirupataya kulamacchariyam vangceti

[friends , pls put the best english word for pali 'macchariya'..... ]

kusala kulanuddayata - The monks/yogins/samanas should develop the compassion, anukampaa (empathy?) etc for the lay people( kula ) who supply them with the basic commodities. Samanas get the help from the 'kula's to live the holylife effectively, and the kulas get the dhammadana, inspiration and guidance from the samanas; (the simile is how the bee collects nectar without harming the flower)

akusala kulamacchariya - the akusala macchariya regarding the kulas can arise in a samana. He may have the internal tendency to dislike the idea that the kulas who give the courtesy to him , doing the same to other samanas. But this kulamacchariya can disguise itself by appearing in the form of ' protecting the kulas from unknown dusseela monks'.

24. avasaciratthitikamata mukhena avasamacchariyam vanceti.

[ and for 'avasa' too...]

kusala avasaciratthitikamata - protecting and maintaining the avasas so the conditions favourable for the holylife will prevail for a long time.

akusala avasamacchariya - not liking to share the avasa with fellow monks. Being restless at the idea of sharing the avasa with others. These types of cheating happen in minds of solitary monks.( The point is to see the danger as the hidden akusalas are being developed(upasampada) mistaking them as for kusalas. And another main point to recall again is that these are not the 'bad', 'unpleasant' types of people but the ones who have the intention to live the holylife accordingly and to develop kusala. )

25. dhammaparibandha pariharana mukhena dhammamacchariyam vangceti.

kusala dhammaparibandhapariharana - protecting the dhamma knowledge . Sometimes ones may wish to study dhamma in order to 'discover' the 'loop holes', 'business interests', potential 'business' ideas, gateways, methods for winning popularity contests..etc and sometimes with the direct intention of harming the dhamma, and subsequently harm the propagation of true dhamma. Detecting these motives ( the motive! , focus is not on the person ) and being cautious in such situations is dhammaparibandhapariharana. [ pariharana - handling ( with care)].

akusala dhammamacchariya - and again!... macchariya regarding the dhamma knowledge.., not liking the idea of spreading and sharing it..as all forms of macchariyas are.

26. dhammadesanabhirati mukhena bhassaramata vangceti.

kusala dhammadesanabhirati - 'liking' to do dhamma katha , preachings

akusala bhassaramata - 'talkative'-ness with useless thiracchina talks. (useless talks with a 'dhamma' wrapper)

27. gananuggahakarana mukhena samganikaramata vangceti.

kusala gananuggahakarana - maintaining 'anuggaha' to others. (anuggaha- helping,assisting,progressive company gana- groups etc... egroups? )

akusala samganikaramata - mere 'social'-ness , hidden attachment to company and social activities. When cheated by this the samanas divert from the essencial components of effective living, ie study, samatha & vipassana...

28. punnakamata patirupataya kammaramata vangceti.

kusala punnakamata - 'desire' to do good deeds(punna). (in order to maintain a hiccup-free lifeflux so the internal search for truth can be effectively continued.)

akusala kammaramata - desire in building and construction works of temples, ponds, aramas..etc.
Some samanas got the hidden tendency to attach to these types of work. And also got the hidden tendency to divert from study of the dhamma,contemplation,dhammadesana,samatha & vipassana. So cheated they develop an unskillful dhamma thinking that its a skill ( punnakamata.)

29. samvega patirupataya cittasantapo vangceti

samvega - the (g)nana that sees the dukkha in the world as a 'bhaya' and a danger

cittasantapa - the sadness in the mind, on dukkhas in the life/s of oneself and others ( relatives, friends, people who have interest..)

samvega is not associated with dosa . It is what triggers the search for truth and renunciation. Citta santapa is an akusala associated with dosa. The check is to observe the situation on seeing the dukkhas faced by neutral beings.

30. saddhaluta patirupataya aparikkhata vangceti

saddaluta - liking to see persons with high virtue, liking association of them, liking treating them.

aparikkhata - Most people may show a face of high virtue just for enjoying the high gains associated with it. venerating all of them without actually finding out the facts is not a skill. This may cheat as saddhaluta.

31. vimamsana patirupataya assaddhiyam vangceti

vimamsana - inquiring, searching in order to take examples of the lifestyles and virtues of venerable ones.

assaddhi - Not liking to see, associate,venerate persons with high qualities and virtue.

When cheated by this one's time 'expires' only and simply(uselessly) for the false 'viamamsana'.

32. attadhipateyyata patirupataya garunam anusasaniya appadakkhinaggahita vangceti

attadhipateyyata - Giving the due careful consideration for the facts spoken and taught by others, thereby taking the takable and leaving out the non-takable.

garunam anusasaniya appadakkhinaggahita - Not taking the advice of teachers. The 'know all' type. Associated with atimaana and thambha ( non-flexibility ) . In refined form this may cheat as attadhipateyya.

33. dhammadhipateyyata patirupataya sabrahmacarisu agaarawam vangceti

dhammadhipateyyata - Keeping the dhamma study, seela and bhavana at the top, first priority, above the rest.

agaaravam sabrahmacarisu - not giving the respect and care for the sabrahmacarins ( samanas who practice holylife with one )( other samanas in the sangha community) The person may isolate himself from the brethern , even without doing the essential sangha karmas, vinaya karmas,.This will be disadvantageous for the cheated mind.

34. Lokadhipateyyata patirupataya attani dhammeca paribhavo vangceti
Lokadhipateyyata - No one can 'customize' the world according to his/her liking. One has to adjust his/her lifestyle so he/she can live without conflict.

attani dhammeca paribhavo -

When 'adjusting with the world' the moral decipline and qualities should not be harmed.

There's the possibility of the internal cheat that tendency to go along the modernisation and the subsequent adjusting may result in the harm to the morals.

35. mettayana mukhena raago vangceti.

raga as the metta - refer to visuddhimagga for a story regarding this

36. karunayana mukhena soko vangceti.

sorrow as compassion

37. muditavihara patirupataya pahaso vangceti

mudita - opponent of jealousy....

pahasa- the 'sapitika tanha' based on the 'subha' arammanas of satva and sankharas.

38. upekkhavihara patirupataya kusalesu dhammesu nikkhittachandata vangceti

kusalesu dhammesu nikkhittachandata - 'losing hope' in kusala kamma/kusalacchanda...the cheated can live without 'trying' for dhammastudy, bhavana..he thinks hes developing upekkha.


Theres a chance that even the writer may be under the influence of a vangcaka. The Citta is so diverse and the number of cheating dhammas is incalculable. The point is to see the cheating ability of the mind, and accept it, be aware of it, and beware.