Adhamma word is used at few places in the Suttas. Adhamma is opposite of Dhamma. If Dhamma means Right then Adhamma means Wrong.

There is a characteristic of existence: Sabbe Dhamma Anatta.

Can I say “ Sabbe Adhamma Anatta “?

Does “ Sabbe Dhamma Anatta “ exclude Adhamma? If not then how do we reconcile?

1 Answer 1


“Sabbe Dhamma Anatta “ incudes adhamma because the word 'adhamma' refers to 'wrong modes of practice/acting' (refer to Thag 4.10) where as the word 'dhamma' in 'sabbe dhamma anatta' does not refer to 'modes of pratice' but refers to 'phenomena' or 'things'.

The word 'dhamma' has multiple meanings dependent upon context. Refer to my old blog here: The word ‘dhamma’ in context

Note: this old blog says for Dhammapada verses 1 & 2, the word 'dhamma' means 'mental states". Currently, I am not sure about this. I now think the word 'dhamma' here means 'modes of practice/acting/living' (which become 'doctrines'; 'teachings').

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