December 3, 2018 at 10:13 am #20622upekkha100Participant
“Brahmās are unisex. However, even a human female who cultivated jhānās and is born as a brahma is said to be have “purisa gati” as a brahma: Bahdhātuka Sutta (MN 115). That term “purisa” is not used in the sense of “male” (Atthapurisa puggalā include women who have comprehended the Four Noble Truths, i.e., belong to the Sangha).”
1) What is meant by “purisa gati”. Is it the personality traits(mental traits) of a male?
2) So in that sutta, when it says purisa, it does not mean literally a male, only the personality of a male? Or is this only the case when referring to Brahma?
3) What about when referring to the Buddha, Sakka the King of devas, Universal Monarch, and Mara? In those cases, is it both literally male and purisa gati?
December 3, 2018 at 11:30 am #20623LalKeymaster
From MN 115:
– ‘Aṭṭhānametaṃ anavakāso yaṃ itthī arahaṃ assa sammāsambuddho, netaṃ ṭhānaṃ vijjatī’ti pajānāti; ‘ṭhānañca kho etaṃ vijjati yaṃ puriso arahaṃ assa sammāsambuddho, ṭhānametaṃ vijjatī’ti pajānāti. ‘Aṭṭhānametaṃ anavakāso yaṃ itthī rājā assa cakkavattī, netaṃ ṭhānaṃ vijjatī’ti pajānāti; ‘ṭhānañca kho etaṃ vijjati yaṃ puriso rājā assa cakkavattī, ṭhānametaṃ vijjatī’ti pajānāti. ‘Aṭṭhānametaṃ anavakāso yaṃ itthī sakkattaṃ kareyya … mārattaṃ kareyya … brahmattaṃ kareyya, netaṃ ṭhānaṃ vijjatī’ti pajānāti; ‘ṭhānañca kho etaṃ vijjati yaṃ puriso sakkattaṃ kareyya … mārattaṃ kareyya … brahmattaṃ kareyya, ṭhānametaṃ vijjatī’ti pajānāti.
Not possible for a female to be a Sammasambuddha, only a male can be a Sammasambuddha. Similarly for cakkavattī emperor (who would rule the whole of the Earth from time-to-time), Sakka (King of Devas), Mara Devaputta, and a brahma.
Except for the brahmas, all others are from kama loka. It is quite clear that a female would not be able to become any of those within that lifetime. That does not mean a woman in the current life cannot become a Buddha or any of the above in the future. In fact, I think when our Bodhisattva started the paramita process, he was a woman in that life.
The statement about the brahma is a bit confusing, since there are no female brahmas. It may just mean that a woman has to attain the “male qualities” to become a brahma. For example, a female cultivating jhana in this life, would acquire “male qualities” at that point. That just means the mindset has been elevated, not a sex change. Even if it is an anariya jhana, one would keep that “elevated mindset” until that kammic energy is exhausted at the death of that brahma.
Regarding the questions:
1)What is meant by “purisa gati”. Is it the personality traits (mental traits) of a male?
-it is an “elevated mindset”. It appears to be easier for a “conventional purisa” or a man to attain.
If the other questions do not have satisfactory answers above, we can discuss more. Furthermore, others may have more ideas or a better interpretation.
December 3, 2018 at 3:42 pm #20626y notParticipant
You mean asexual?
However, what Lal is here making reference to are rather androgynes (hermaphrodites or bi-sexuals), simultaneously male and female, but in the psychological sense. There are species that are physically androgynous in the animal kingdom (snails for instance).
There are records in some esoteric teachings that even humans were once androgynous, and that that state is the normal one for a humanity on acquiring a dense material body* To my mind, The Jewish legend of ‘God’ taking a rib from Adam to make a female is the symbolism of this ‘seperation of the sexes’, which I read as an extraterrestrial humanity having ‘quickened’ the, if left to itself,natural transition of an androgynous humanity to a male-and-female one here. *That all beings return from the Abhassara realm once the Earth is reformed may be relevant here. (I had not thought of that)
These fragments relating to the former states and physical structure of the humanity on this planet are found here and there in the world. They may be approximations, or distortions in some cases, of real facts from former Buddhas sasanas. Lal once pointed this out, but in reference to another subject altogether.
Like yourself, I feel that Brahmas have gone beyond sex altogether — in the physical, mental and emotional sense ,all, since they have made an end of kama raga.
December 3, 2018 at 7:02 pm #20627upekkha100Participant
y not said:
“Like yourself, I feel that Brahmas have gone beyond sex altogether — in the physical, mental and emotional sense ,all,”
Yes I agree with this. And that is why I think androgynous is not the best word to describe brahmas. As androgynous means the merging of both genders. Whereas brahmas are the absence of both genders.
December 3, 2018 at 7:23 pm #20628LalKeymaster
It is not possible to perceive beings in higher realms with our own experience.
– “Brahma bodies” are unimaginably small.
– They have attained “brhama bhava” by giving up cravings for not only sex but most sense pleasures in preference of jhanic pleasures.
I have been writing a series of posts at the following discussion forum. I recently wrote about this issue there.
I am trying to present a systematic presentation there, starting at a basic level (a suggested sequence of posts was published only a couple of days ago):
The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero
Since it is hard to present such a systematic approach at puredhamma.net, I plan to continue that series.
December 4, 2018 at 2:04 am #20631y notParticipant
Yes – that is what I meant. Like Yeos, I think Brahmas are asexual (sexless). Because if they were androgynous, the attraction between male and female would still be there: androgynous creatures still reproduce in the human realm.
In contrast, devas still enjoy pleasures arising from the male-female attraction as all the five senses persist but no reproduction process is involved there; while brahmas have only the senses of sight and sound left, (therefore no sense of touch, smell or taste).
Thank you for your endeavors on Dhamma Wheel as well.
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