Itivuttaka 51

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: “Monks, there are these three properties. Which three? The property of form, the property of formlessness, the property of cessation.1 These are the three properties.”

Comprehending the property of form,

not taking a stance in the formless,

those released in cessation

are people who’ve left death      behind.

Having touched with his body

the deathless

property                  free

from acquisitions,

having realized the relinquishing

of acquisitions,


the Rightly

Self-awakened One

teaches the state


no sorrow,

no dust.


1. The property of form corresponds to the experience of the form of the body as present in the first four levels of jhāna (see Glossary). The property of formlessness corresponds to the formless experiences based on the fourth level of jhāna: the dimension of the infinitude of space, the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness, the dimension of nothingness, and the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. The property of cessation is the experience of the total cessation of stress.

See also: §§72-73