SN 12.48 Lokayatika Sutta: The Cosmologist

A cosmologist (C) asks the Buddha (B) a series of questions:

C: “Does everything exist?”
B: “This is the oldest cosmology.”

C: “Does everything not exist?”
B: “This is the second oldest cosmology.”

C: “Is everything a unity?”
B: “This is the third form of cosmology.”

C: “Is everything a plurality?”
B: “This is the fourth form of cosmology.”

B then goes on to say that his teaching avoids these extremes and ‘teaches by the middle’ ie. dependent origination .

This sutta shows that the Buddha did not hold to the doctrine of ‘all is one’ as we so often here.

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