Visuddhimagga VIII-190

Tattha iminā ādikammikena kulaputtena paṭhamaṃ gaṇanāya idaṃ kammaṭṭhānaṃ manasi kātabbaṃ.


Ñ(VIII,190): 1. Herein, this clansman who is a beginner should first give attention to this meditation subject by counting.

Gaṇentena ca pañcannaṃ heṭṭhā na ṭhapetabbaṃ.


Ñ: And when counting, he should not stop short of five

Dasannaṃ upari na netabbaṃ.


Ñ: or go beyond ten

Antarā khaṇḍaṃ na dassetabbaṃ.


Ñ: or make any break in the series.

Pañcannaṃ heṭṭhā ṭhapentassa hi sambādhe okāse cittuppādo vipphandati sambādhe vaje sanniruddhagogaṇo viya.


Ñ: By stopping short of five his thoughts get excited in the cramped space, like a herd of cattle shut in a cramped pen.

Dasannampi upari nentassa gaṇananissitako cittuppādo hoti.


Ñ: By going beyond ten his thoughts take the number [rather than the breaths] for their support.

Antarā khaṇḍaṃ dassentassa ‘‘sikhāppattaṃ nu kho me kammaṭṭhānaṃ, no’’ti cittaṃ vikampati.


Ñ: By making a break in the series he wonders if the meditation subject has reached completion or not.

Tasmā ete dose vajjetvā gaṇetabbaṃ.


Ñ: So he should do his counting without those faults.

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Acknowledgment: Thanks to Buddhist Publication Society (BPS) and Venerable Nyanatusita for allowing me to use the English translation of the Visuddhimagga (The Path Of Purification) by Bhadantācariya Buddhaghosa, translated from the Pāḷi by Bhikkhu Ñāṇamoli, as part of a combined Chinese English translation.

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