What is the nature of the change due to impermanence ,is it just a random change or intelligent change ?,are the actions resulting from it considered right action or that depends on the degree of identification that the impermanent person/thing is having towards another person/thing?.

The more I watch it I see that sometimes this change or flux is not just random and is intelligent.All the changes happening inside the body and mind do not require a doer but are intelligent.Can the nature or the behavior of the change be also recognized ?.

  • This ,"will guiding the breath" is called Ignorance in buddhism. Enlightened one doesnot depend on any type of food ( material or wave ) ,so there is 'No will' inside an enlightened one but force(of ignorance) remains contributing to age .Even without food/water/air , enlightened one remain in peace till force remains.
    – user17220
    Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 18:58
  • I tried to clear the question a bit more ,check it out again please.This is important question for me Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 20:03
  • In and out-breath is considered bodily fabrication. That means it is not automatic. It is done by the mind or thought.
    – SarathW
    Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 20:26
  • What does "will" mean? Does it mean the same thing as "somebody's desire"? Are you suggesting that everything happens because God wants it to happen? And are you asking whether that (i.e. "everything happens because God wants it to happen") is Buddhist doctrine?
    – ChrisW
    Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 20:28
  • Nothing has a will of it's own. From ur meditation experience , ..., sit again :: behind every sensation there is a particular series of thoughts ,eg. if hungry , check ur mind & reason will be one of the defilements(lust , ,anger etc.) ;behind these thoughts , check subconscious state , worldly concerns will be there , now check age of such concerns , it would seem permanent due to every bit of energy in body is being consumed by these concerns & this energy keeps on coming back through eating but this is Ignorance . Don't get delusions of permanence & universal_will.
    – user17220
    Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 20:33

6 Answers 6


Buddhism isn't overly concerned with the source or cause of impermanence. The Buddhist problematic is that the mind fixates on permanence — on wanting things to be a certain way, always — and that fixation causes misery of various sorts when things do change (as they inevitably will).

I'm not certain what thought or insight is bubbling around behind this question (perhaps it hasn't made itself clear even to you, yet), but you should be aware that fixating on impermanence can be just as problematic as fixating on anything else. Who or what are you trying to ascribe intelligence to?

  • To impermanence itself.....out of watching impermanence that quality is recognized,a quality of impermanence ,I find that the changes inside the body or in the heavens for example ,are intelligent changes,, the changes that result due to impermanence seem wise . Commented Nov 10, 2019 at 17:35
  • Impermanence is not a 'thing' that you can ascribe qualities (like intelligence) to. Impermanence is merely a quality. If impermanence were a 'thing' it too would be impermanent... Commented Nov 10, 2019 at 17:37
  • What I mean just like Impermanence was recognized as a quality of a thing also the result that occurred due to this quality was intelligent ,so intelligence was also recognized as a quality of a thing due to impermanence,that goes in line with dependent origination ,because of that, this showed up . Commented Nov 10, 2019 at 17:46
  • I don't even know what that means. How is a result 'intelligent'? Commented Nov 10, 2019 at 17:53
  • Its like an animal adapting to its environment ,the change that occurred in it was not merely random but led to a result that solved a problem for the animal ,thus the change due to impermanence of the state of the cells was not random but intelligent..if you didn't recognize the quality by experiencing it ,I cannot explain it to you. Commented Nov 10, 2019 at 18:04

What is the nature of the impermanence ,is it just a random change or intelligent change ?

Impermanence is a characteristic of conditioned existence, ie. of Samsara. All compounded and conditioned things are tainted by this characteristic. It is an impersonal law with no known origin. It should be thoroughly contemplated and observed mindfully as it is part of the Triple Gateway to Liberation, signs that lead to the outlet of this world.

enter image description here


So much time it took to put up a correct question ... ÷) ÷).

Impermanence : It is defined at atomic level for tiniest possible energy particle which shows dual nature :: matter(as existence) and wave(as non-existence or Maya or Delusion).

Whatever happens due to this dual nature , is called as change.

Change seems to be intelligent to a human till it makes one happy ,otherwise it seems to be a curse. Change is intelligent upto what seems to be good. But ,my friend , what seems to be good is ,in itself, a biggest hinderance than not-good. Pain, actually ,is a pleasure in early form. When one gets used to this pain , it becomes pleasure and seems to be intelligent.

Fruits of change in living beings is due to Ignorance and in non-living beings is due to chemical reactions. Now unless you are a believer in God or something like that , it won't create a confusion otherwise you might think who is causing these chemical reactions. Such questions are hindrances to meditation. Sit again and try to analyze that seems to be intelligent to you , it's just a pleasure feeling. Otherwise ,when you see it WISELY , it becomes merely cause and conditions passing by while Ignorance as stand-by...÷)

  • The time I took was also based on causes and conditions :).What I tried to clear out is the changes based on the causes and conditions are constructive ,the reaction to the causes and conditions was't compulsive but in line with causes and conditions so due to the sun,the flower opened up ,that was good for the flower ,no other reaction would have been more constructive .So its the quality of the reaction to causes & conditions that is intelligent. Iam not saying there is God but what I felt experientially that there is a quality of intelligence. Commented Nov 15, 2019 at 13:11
  • During past time , this reaction towards cause and conditions was not same , because during evolution , that flower might have damaged a lot of times because of excessive heat from sun . In Future also , that flower might be destroyed due to radioactive rays due to Ozone layer depletion. This constructive reaction is only for present time , as it is constructive in present and fruitful to you ,it seems to be intelligent to you. Remain calm ,it(this process of constructiveness) will also pass-by.
    – user17220
    Commented Nov 15, 2019 at 13:18
  • Exactly ,just like how my question progressed .Its ok for the bird to not able to fly first ,this in itself is indication to an intelligent quality ,that there is a learning curve and progress ,its not just random impermanence ,but constructive impermanence .Karma also cannot be a linear rule ,but also is fundamentally, just & good for all beings ,that also is an intelligent quality.. Commented Nov 15, 2019 at 13:30
  • But , Omar , this is not a permanent intelligence , bird is able to fly now but not a master ,when becomes a master , then not a king of sky , even king of sky can be caught by someone else.If this intelligence is permanently being acquired by anything/anyone ,till now all the beings would have been perfect. This time , you used a word ,'good' , which is for Ignorance to Awareness ,can be intelligence ,still is a process ,not quality. Try to understand , your intellect is confusing you from looking in past & future consequences which might not be intelligent.
    – user17220
    Commented Nov 15, 2019 at 13:42
  • I didn't say the intelligence is permanent ,the existence of intelligence is an existential reality ,just like impermanence is.It can vary in degree and develop over time ,but it exists fundamentally in all things and beings ,you can recognize it from meditation without being concerned about recognizing something specific. Commented Nov 15, 2019 at 13:49

I don't know if I'm following your point but impermanence in Buddhism isn't intelligent or a belief but is merely what one notices objectivly when not distracted by habits & beliefs.

  • yes it is noticed ,from that noticing also the change that is occurring,is it just a random change or intelligent ? Commented Nov 9, 2019 at 1:37
  • 1
    Are you talking about the insight that arises from witnessing impermanance? Insight may seem random but really it is just a matter of the right conditions arising for insight to arise. It's like wandering through a labyrinth and being fortunate enough to find the way out. The more we make the right conditions arise, the higher the chance of accidentally discovering insight. Nothing is random in samsara as everything in existence has causes and conditions that are never random but because we don't know the underlying causes and conditions things may appear random.
    – Lowbrow
    Commented Nov 9, 2019 at 2:08
  • 1
    Yes thats what I mean .The change due to impermanence itself I noticed is good for all beings ,so it isn't just a ruthless rule but has intelligent quality because all the causes and conditions you talked about make sense together, they fit and thats smart. Commented Nov 9, 2019 at 2:18

The Oxford dictionary defines intelligence as "the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills." The nature of impermanence is that what is born also dies, and what is acquired is lost. And this applies to knowledge and skills, which are also acquired and lost. Intelligence itself is impermanent--it waxes and wanes as well.

dn16: ‘Conditions are impermanent. How could it possibly be otherwise?’”

Buddhism addresses the end of suffering. And that would require an end to grasping at impermanence:

an10.93: “Sirs, anything that is created, conditioned, chosen, and dependently originated is impermanent.

an10.93: And what’s impermanent is suffering.

Specifically, what is important about impermanence is that, intelligent or random, impermanence is just ...

... unsatisfactory.


I think the "intelligence" is a projection -- i.e. that it is your saying, "that's clever, that fits, that's purposeful, that make sense to me."

I think impermanence happens because of causes -- e.g. a cup is made from clay, later the cup is broken.

I don't see it's useful to apply the word "intelligent" -- maybe the cup being broken is "negligent" rather than "intelligent", or maybe it's "natural".

It may be a human tendency to ascribe intelligence -- see animism.

I don't remember suttas which support the view that "impermanence is intelligent", although of course it says a lot of other things.

  • Yes so the quality of the reaction to the causes and conditions is what I felt as intelligent.The very fact that I felt that must also be because of causes and conditions Commented Nov 14, 2019 at 18:16

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .