The (Fourfold) Round
Parivaṭṭa Sutta  (SN 22:56)

Near Sāvatthī. There the Blessed One said, “Monks, there are these five clinging-aggregates. Which five? The form clinging-aggregate, the feeling clinging-aggregate, the perception clinging-aggregate, the fabrications clinging-aggregate, the consciousness clinging-aggregate.

“Now, as long as I did not have direct knowledge of the fourfold round with regard to these five clinging-aggregates as they have come to be, I did not claim to have directly awakened to the unexcelled right self-awakening in this cosmos with its devas, Māras, & Brahmās, in this generation with its contemplatives & brahmans, its royalty & common folk. But when I did have direct knowledge of the fourfold round with regard to these five clinging-aggregates as they have come to be, then I did claim to have directly awakened to the unexcelled right self-awakening in this cosmos with its devas, Māras, & Brahmās, in this generation with its contemplatives & brahmans, its royalty & common folk.

“The fourfold round in what way? I had direct knowledge of form… of the origination of form… of the cessation of form… of the path of practice leading to the cessation of form.

“I had direct knowledge of feeling.…

“I had direct knowledge of perception.…

“I had direct knowledge of fabrications.…

“I had direct knowledge of consciousness… of the origination of consciousness… of the cessation of consciousness… of the path of practice leading to the cessation of consciousness.

“And what is form? The four great existents [the earth property, the liquid property, the fire property, & the wind property] and the form derived from them: This is called form. From the origination of nutriment comes the origination of form.1 From the cessation of nutriment comes the cessation of form. And just this noble eightfold path is the path of practice leading to the cessation of form, i.e., right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration.

“For any contemplatives or brahmans who by directly knowing form in this way, directly knowing the origination of form in this way, directly knowing the cessation of form in this way, directly knowing the path of practice leading to the cessation of form in this way, are practicing for disenchantment—dispassion—cessation with regard to form, they are practicing rightly. Those who are practicing rightly are firmly based in this Dhamma & Vinaya. And any contemplatives or brahmans who by directly knowing form in this way, directly knowing the origination of form in this way, directly knowing the cessation of form in this way, directly knowing the path of practice leading to the cessation of form in this way, are—from disenchantment, dispassion, cessation, lack of clinging/sustenance with regard to form—released, they are well released. Those who are well released are fully accomplished. And with those who are fully accomplished, there is no cycle for the sake of describing them.

“And what is feeling? These six bodies of feeling—feeling born of eye-contact, feeling born of ear-contact, feeling born of nose-contact, feeling born of tongue-contact, feeling born of body-contact, feeling born of intellect-contact: This is called feeling. From the origination of contact comes the origination of feeling. From the cessation of contact comes the cessation of feeling. And just this noble eightfold path is the path of practice leading to the cessation of feeling.…

“And what is perception? These six bodies of perception—perception of form, perception of sound, perception of smell, perception of taste, perception of tactile sensation, perception of ideas: This is called perception. From the origination of contact comes the origination of perception. From the cessation of contact comes the cessation of perception. And just this noble eightfold path is the path of practice leading to the cessation of perception.…

“And what are fabrications? These six bodies of intention—intention with regard to form, intention with regard to sound, intention with regard to smell, intention with regard to taste, intention with regard to tactile sensation, intention with regard to ideas: These are called fabrications. From the origination of contact comes the origination of fabrications. From the cessation of contact comes the cessation of fabrications. And just this noble eightfold path is the path of practice leading to the cessation of fabrications.…

“And what is consciousness? These six bodies of consciousness—eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, nose-consciousness, tongue-consciousness, body-consciousness, intellect-consciousness: This is called consciousness. From the origination of name-&-form comes the origination of consciousness. From the cessation of name-&-form comes the cessation of consciousness. And just this noble eightfold path is the path of practice leading to the cessation of consciousness, i.e., right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration.

“For any contemplatives or brahmans who by directly knowing consciousness in this way, directly knowing the origination of consciousness in this way, directly knowing the cessation of consciousness in this way, directly knowing the path of practice leading to the cessation of consciousness in this way, are practicing for disenchantment—dispassion—cessation with regard to consciousness, they are practicing rightly. Those who are practicing rightly are firmly based in this Dhamma & Vinaya. And any contemplatives or brahmans who by directly knowing consciousness in this way, directly knowing the origination of consciousness in this way, directly knowing the cessation of consciousness in this way, directly knowing the path of practice leading to the cessation of consciousness in this way, are—from disenchantment, dispassion, cessation, lack of clinging/sustenance with regard to consciousness—released, they are well released. Those who are well released are fully accomplished. And with those who are fully accomplished, there is no cycle for the sake of describing them.”

Note

1. For an alternative description of the origination of this and the other aggregates, see SN 22:5.

See also: DN 15; MN 148