I have heard more than one Dharma teacher say the Buddha claimed that practitioners who are more strongly inclined towards hate than greed are closer to nibbana.

Is there any evidence from the suttas to support this claim?

If true, did the Buddha offer any hints as to why this might be true?


2 Answers 2


I have seen this discussed at length in a traditional Buddhist text, but I don't remember in which one 😔

To be precise it was not "hate" vs "greed" but "aversion" vs "attachment" ( or "indulging").

Basically, the logic went as follows: aversion is by its nature unpleasant and so the person naturally wants to get rid of the feeling it generates, while indulging is pleasant and so is more difficult to abandon, because there's no motivation to do so.

That's the basic logic, I'll try to find the text but can't promise.

  • 1
    This is helpful and it intuitively feels correct. Thank you.
    – Alex Ryan
    Feb 25, 2021 at 23:31
  • Most suttas that I have read seem to treat passion/ greed and aversion equally.
    – ruben2020
    Feb 27, 2021 at 9:40

An 'annihilationist' is a person that still believes in self however believes or is cognizant the self will end at death and whatever the self possesses will be lost at death.

Iti 49 provides an example of the views of 'annihilationists' who have hate rather than greed; which it contrasts with 'eternalists' who have greed rather than hate; as follows:

[Annihilationist view] How, bhikkhus, do some overreach? Now some are troubled (harāyati), ashamed (aṭṭiyati) and disgusted (jigucchati) by this very same being and they rejoice in (the idea of) non-being, asserting: ‘In as much as this self, good sirs, when the body perishes at death, is annihilated and destroyed and does not exist after death—this is peaceful, this is excellent, this is reality!’ Thus, bhikkhus, do some overreach.

[Eternalist view] And how, bhikkhus, do some hold back? Devas and humans enjoy being, delight in being, are satisfied with being. When Dhamma is taught to them for the cessation of being, their minds do not enter into it or acquire confidence in it or settle upon it or become resolved upon it. Thus, bhikkhus, do some hold back.

Iti 49

AN 10.29 describes views which are 'annihilationist'. AN 10.29 says these views are closer to Nibbana because they are expected to cause dispassion, as follows:

Bhikkhus, of the speculative views held by outsiders, this is the foremost, namely: ‘I might not be and it might not be mine; I shall not be, and it will not be mine.’ For it can be expected that one who holds such a view will not be unrepelled by existence and will not be repelled by the cessation of existence.

AN 10.29

  • Which part of your answer relates to the question? It's too obscure. Your answer is about views and not the fetters of sensual desire & I'll-will or attraction & aversion or greed & hate.
    – user17652
    Feb 26, 2021 at 17:49
  • No. It is your reading that is obscure. I have edited my answer for those who don't understand Buddhism very well. The answer is now perfect. Feb 26, 2021 at 19:02
  • Excellent! Very sharp: This is how they (the annihilationist, the hateful ones) are closer to nirvana: For it can be expected that one who holds such a view will not be unrepelled by existence and will not be repelled by the cessation of existence.
    – user17652
    Feb 26, 2021 at 20:49
  • very good........ Feb 26, 2021 at 21:55

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