12 Links of Dependent-Arising

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The twelve links of dependent-arising

The twelve links of dependent-arising—symbolized by the twelve pictures around the outside —present the process in detail. These are called twelve links, or twelve branches, because they comprise the causal sequence of lives in cyclic existence

We will learn about each of these in detail. The twelve links are:

1 ignorance
which motivates an
2 action
at the end of which a predisposition is established on the consciousness, called the
3a cause-consciousness
This leads—after what can be a long time—to the taking of rebirth, which is called the
3b effect-consciousness
The beginning of a new lifetime is called
4 name and form
The next stage, the development of the embryo, is called
5 six sense spheres
From the formation of the body senses
6 contact
is developed; from contact, there is
7 feeling
from feeling there arises
8 attachment
from attachment arises
9 grasping
from grasping, there develops at the end of the lifetime a stage called
10 existence
which in fact is the moment just before the new lifetime; the new lifetime begins with
11 birth
and then continues with
12 aging and death