Reply To: Four Conditions for Attaining Sōtapanna Magga/Phala


Puthujjana wrote: “Anupasampannassa here, is unlikely to render as “not attained”, but “not ordained” fit well, right?”

Here is what I found so far: “sāmaṇera” is one who is just ordained, i.e., became a bhikkhu.
“upasampadā” is a higher level which is attained with seniority and other qualifications.

It seems “upasampannassa” is used to indicate one who has attained upasampadā.
“Anupasampannassa” is still a sāmaṇera.

But any bhikkhu commits a parajika offense (which is one of 4 most serious offenses) by declaring a supermundane attainment like jhana or magga phala (Uttarimanussadhamma) knowing that he does not have jhana or magga phala.

Here is the definition from 1. Pārājikakaṇḍa:
Asantaṃ abhūtaṃ uttari­manus­sa­dhammaṃ ullapanto kati āpattiyo āpajjati? Asantaṃ abhūtaṃ uttari­manus­sa­dhammaṃ ullapanto tisso āpattiyo āpajjati. Pāpiccho icchāpakato asantaṃ abhūtaṃ uttari­manus­sa­dhammaṃ ullapati, āpatti pārājikassa..”

Now, for the minor offense of pācittiya seems to involve who tells whom, and seems to be bit complicated.
– It also involves speaking of attainments by others (which no one would know except for a Buddha).
– However, a pācittiya offense can be overcome by confessing it to an assembly of bhikkhus.

But a pārājika offense cannot be overcome; one who committed a pārājika offense stops being a bhikkhu. He has to give up robes. Even if he does not give up robes he would not be a bhikkhu in the Buddha Sasana.

That is my understanding so far. I do not want to get into those pācittiya offenses. They seem to be complicated and are not beneficial to us for this discussion.

So, the bottom line is that any bhikkhu (or a lay person) can declare an attainment if desired. But if it is done without really having such attainments that is a pārājika offense.
– I have given sutta references for that on May 27, 2019 at 7:24 am.
– I must note that there many instances of declaring such attainments in the Tipitaka. For example, the first three Buddhist Councils (Sangayana) involved only Arahants. Without declaring Arahanthood by oneself, how would others know?

P.S. Thanks for posting the Sutta Central guide.
But unfortunately they translate anicca and anatta as “impermanence” and “no-self”. There are more as I have pointed out.
That is why I always give the link to the Pali version. One can get a translation (sometimes to several languages) by clicking on the “hamburger menu”) on top left. So, yes, they are good resource, but one needs to be careful.