Nyanaponika Thera

The Five Mental Hindrances and Their Conquest

The Five Mental Hindrances and Their Conquest

Many are the obstacles which block the road to spiritual progress, but there are five in particular which, under the name of hindrances (nivarana), are often mentioned in the Buddhist scriptures: sensual desire, ill-will, sloth and torpor, restlessness and remorse, and sceptical doubt. They are called ‘hindrances’ because they hinder and envelop the mind in many ways, obstructing its development. Every step in weakening these hindrances takes us nearer to the stages of sanctity where deliverance from these hindrances is unshakable.

In this booklet, following a brief introduction, Ven. Nyanaponika gives a selection of passages which he translated from the Discourses of the Buddha and the commentaries.


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About Nyanaponika Thera

Nyanaponika Thera (Siegmund Feniger) was born on 21 July 1901 in Hanau, Germany. He came into contact with Buddhism early in his youth and left for Sri Lanka in 1936, where he was ordained as a novice and a year later as a mong by the famous German monk Nyanatiloka.

Interned in camps like Dehra Dun's in India, he worked intensively during the war years on translations of Pali texts. Not only as author of the now classic The Heart of Buddhist Meditation and of many other books and translations, but also as co-founder in 1958, editor and president of the Buddhist Publication Society he made a great contribution to the international dissemination of the Theravāda teachings. He died on October 19, 1994 in Kandy, Sri Lanka.

You yourselves must strive, the Buddhas only point the way

Buddha, Dhp 276

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