Sabbe Sankhara Anicca. But it is not clear why all Sankhara are impermanent?

Can I ask ,who is responsible for making all Sankhara impermanent? Are we responsible for making the Sankhara impermanent? Is it some kind of God who is responsible for making all Sankhara impermanent? Or Does it happen on its own ?

  • @blue_ego I asked this because I can change my sankhara… so I am speculating whether this is true for all Sankharas. Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 16:59
  • I don't understand what "my sankhara" means. Would you read Can anyone explain Sanskara / Sankara indepth? and then maybe specify more precisely which thing or meaning you're asking about?
    – ChrisW
    Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 18:38
  • I'm not sure how to summarize this logically. You might read more on a closely-related subject if you read some of the essays which people have written about the "Dhamma Eye".
    – ChrisW
    Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 18:58
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    I’m voting to close this question because this question does not appear to be about Buddhist philosophy, teaching, and practice Commented Oct 22, 2023 at 20:36
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    @ChrisW suppose I lie frequently. Then lying is my Sankhara and by practising honesty I can change it. There is a choice and intention. Similarly there is a Sankhara of profit making in the modern world. Question is whose choice and intention is to make money ? Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 13:54

4 Answers 4


I think the doctrine is that a person could assume there is such a thing as "me" -- but that, if they do then that's not a useful/helpful theory, it's misleading.

Instead we're encouraged to see everything as not-self.

Things happen or don't happen because of conditions -- for example, greed, poverty, wisdom, anger, fear, skill, good or bad companions, and so on, or the brahmaviharas (e.g. metta), including also "views" i.e. assumptions about the way things are and function.

There's no use in saying, "Oh it's because a god decided it would be that way". Instead we're encouraged to understand 'causes' -- i.e. "what", and "how", and "why", and so on (but not really a "who") -- and to understand that when a cause or condition changes, or ceases, or increases, then that affects or changes or determines a result or a new set of conditions.


Sankhara is a compounded phenomenon. That is, it is a phenomenon which is composed of other things. It is a phenomenon which arises based on causes and conditions. It is not a thing- it is an appearance based on other appearances. It is the nature of all compounded phenomenon- to be impermanent. Being compounded- an aggregate- is a symptom of impermanent nature. Subject to change.

  • to say 'it's not a thing' creates confusion, but that's ok
    – blue_ego
    Commented Oct 31, 2023 at 23:02
  • "a thing" is a substance which is always there. Hence, I have emphasized that sankhara is not a thing (ontologically speaking). To help avoid such confusions, I have also written that it is a phenomenon. There is a difference between a thing and phenomenon - both philosophically and (especially) in Buddhist contexts. Commented Oct 31, 2023 at 23:07

It's simply a universal law. No one designed it that way.

“Monks, whether Tathāgatas arise or not, this aspect of the world remains the same – this stable truth, this fixed truth: All conditional things are impermanent. A Tathāgata awakens to that and realizes that. Having awakened to it and realized it, he announces it, teaches it, describes it, expresses it, reveals it, explains it, and clarifies it: ‘All conditional things are impermanent.’
AN 3.136


After meditation on Dhamma (or law) of Anicca (or impermanence) , I had an enlightening moment. Anicca or the impermanence is a sankhara. Nibbana is neither permanent nor impermanent.

There is a birth of change of sankhara. Therefore Dhamma of Dependent origination applies.

Who makes it Anicca or impermanence does not apply.

How does the birth of change of sankhara originates ? This can be answered as follows :

First there was ignorance, this led to the volitional formations, volitional formations led to consciousness, consciousness led to name and form , name and form led to six senses , six senses led to contact, contact led to feelings , feelings led to clinging, clinging led to cravings , cravings led to attachments , attachments led to becoming , becoming led to birth , ageing and death of the change of sankhara.

  • Hello. This is an English language form. For Theravada, it is proper to use Romanized Pali, i.e., "sankhara". For Mahayana, Romanized Sanskrit, i.e., "saṃskāra". Commented Oct 30, 2023 at 2:14
  • @DhammaDhatu ok Commented Oct 30, 2023 at 3:28

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