MAJJHIMA Nikāya, SUTTA 99

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    • #15943
      Embodied
      Spectator

      Hi

      QUESTION: who is the mentioned High Divinity? The brahmas in the highest realms i suppose ?

      “Master Gotama, I have heard it said that the Monk Gotama teaches the path to the retinue of the High Divinity. It would be good if Master Gotama would teach me that.”
      “Then listen and attend carefully to what I shall say.”
      “Even so, sir,” the student Subha Todeyyaputta replied. The Blessed One said this.
      “And what is the path to the retinue of the High Divinity? Here a bhikkhu abides with his heart imbued with loving-kindness extending over one quarter, likewise the second quarter, likewise the third quarter, likewise the fourth quarter, and so above, below, around, and everywhere and to all as to himself; he abides with his heart abundant, exalted, measureless in loving-kindness, without hostility or ill-will, extending over the all-encompassing world. While this heart-deliverance of loving-kindness is maintained in being in this way, no action restricted by limited measurement is found there, none persists there. Just as a vigorous trumpeter could easily make himself heard in the four directions, so too when the heart-deliverance of loving-kindness is maintained in being in this way no action restricted by limited measurement is found there, none persists there. This is a path to the retinue of the High Divinity.”

      Source: Access to Insight.org

      Thanks

    • #15955
      Lal
      Keymaster

      Please follow the instructions given here to provide a link to your source:
      How to Reply to a Forum Question“.

      Everyone should follow those instructions. That will make it easier for all. I don’t have time to go look for references, and I am sure others don’t either.

      Another thing is to prepare your questions thoughtfully and grammatically. I am asking this from everyone. Let us keep the forum uncluttered and professional. Embodied question is fine, except for the missing link.

      • #15959
        Embodied
        Spectator

        Hi Lal,

        OK I’ll look for the link later. I thought that to cite the site only (accesstoinsight.org) would be enough but… I got it.

    • #15961
      SengKiat
      Moderator

      Here is the part of the sutta that @Embodied said:
      Middle Discourses 99 Majjhima Nikāya 99
      With Subha Subhasutta
      Link location at Suttacentral

      Answer is obvious with the below portion of the sutta.

      23.1
      “Master Gotama, I have heard that
      “Sutaṃ metaṃ, bho gotama:
      23.2
      the ascetic Gotama teaches a path to companionship with Brahmā.”
      ‘samaṇo gotamo brahmānaṃ sahabyatāya maggaṃ desetī’ti.
      23.3
      Please teach me that path.”
      Sādhu me bhavaṃ gotamo brahmānaṃ sahabyatāya maggaṃ desetū”ti.
      23.4
      “Well then, student, listen and pay close attention, I will speak.”
      “Tena hi, māṇava, suṇāhi, sādhukaṃ manasi karohi, bhāsissāmī”ti.
      23.5
      “Yes, sir,” replied Subha.
      “Evaṃ, bho”ti kho subho māṇavo todeyyaputto bhagavato paccassosi.
      23.6
      The Buddha said this:
      Bhagavā etadavoca:
      24.1
      “And what is a path to companionship with Brahmā?
      “Katamo ca, māṇava, brahmānaṃ sahabyatāya maggo?
      24.2
      Firstly, a monk meditates spreading a heart full of love to one direction, and to the second, and to the third, and to the fourth. In the same way above, below, across, everywhere, all around, they spread a heart full of love to the whole world—abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will.
      Idha, māṇava, bhikkhu mettāsahagatena cetasā ekaṃ disaṃ pharitvā viharati, tathā dutiyaṃ, tathā tatiyaṃ, tathā catutthaṃ; iti uddhamadho tiriyaṃ sabbadhi sabbattatāya sabbāvantaṃ lokaṃ mettāsahagatena cetasā vipulena mahaggatena appamāṇena averena abyābajjhena pharitvā viharati.
      24.3
      When the heart’s release by love has been developed and cultivated like this, any limited deeds they’ve done don’t remain or persist there.
      Evaṃ bhāvitāya kho, māṇava, mettāya cetovimuttiyā yaṃ pamāṇakataṃ kammaṃ na taṃ tatrāvasissati, na taṃ tatrāvatiṭṭhati.
      24.4
      Suppose there was a powerful horn blower. They’d easily make themselves heard in the four directions.
      Seyyathāpi, māṇava, balavā saṅkhadhamo appakasireneva cātuddisā viññāpeyya;
      24.5
      In the same way, when the heart’s release by love has been developed and cultivated like this, any limited deeds they’ve done don’t remain or persist there.
      evameva kho, māṇava … pe … evaṃ bhāvitāya kho, māṇava, mettāya cetovimuttiyā yaṃ pamāṇakataṃ kammaṃ na taṃ tatrāvasissati, na taṃ tatrāvatiṭṭhati.
      24.6
      This is a path to companionship with Brahmā.
      Ayampi kho, māṇava, brahmānaṃ sahabyatāya maggo.

      • #15964
        Embodied
        Spectator

        Hello

        That’s it yes, high divinity could but be the brahmas (plural thus for they are more than one,I suppose).

        So the more subtle the beings are, the more they dwell within limitless love.

        Thank you

    • #15965
      y not
      Participant

      ‘24.3 When the heart’s release by love has been developed and cultivated like this, any limited deeds they’ve done don’t remain or persist THERE’

      This would appear to indicate that ‘any limited deeds they’ve done don’t remain or persist THERE'( capitals mine) refers to those deeds done in or in connection with the realm of the retinue of Brahma (realm 12) or, if taken more loosely, some other sphere or spheres beyond that, either singly or collectively.

      I write this because of its (possible) connection to what Lal said in the post ‘Working towards good rebirths/kamma debt and meditation’ #8 ‘(Actually, the Buddha has said that if one does the Ariya metta mediation frequently, one could pay off the debts associated with the kamaloka (first 11 realms); more on that in a future post).’ NOW I AM IN NO WAY HINTING TO LAL TO COME UP WITH THAT NOW. I am well aware he has other more pressing matters at hand.

      Now (24.2)’ a monk meditates spreading a heart full of love to one direction,…everywhere, all around, they spread a heart full of love to the whole world’….would be the PRACTICE, and (24.3)..’When the heart’s release by love has been developed and cultivated like this, any limited deeds they’ve done don’t remain or persist there.'(meaning the consequences or kamma vipaka of deeds that had been generated there) would be the CULMINATION or phala of Ariya Metta Bhavana.

      So, although the practice of Ariya Metta Bhavana and the factors involved in that practice (a heart full of love,expansive, limitless, in all direction, no ill-will etc), where It has effect will depend on the intention or on the MENTAL direction as a particular objective, although spatially, that spreads out ‘in all directions’ in any case.

      I welcome comments gratefully,

      y not

      • #15969
        Embodied
        Spectator

        @Y not,

        I understood quite the opposite (unless I misunderstood your post ha). I understood that whatever the “nonsense” you would have done in the past, if one succeeds into expand one’s heart as taught in the Sutta, one will rebirth in the brahmas realm… ?

    • #15966
      y not
      Participant

      …time up for editing..

      …by ‘where it has effect’ last para, 2nd verse, I mean which REALM. I thought I should leave no room for doubt about that.

      y not

    • #15971
      y not
      Participant

      Embodied:

      I had thought of that possibility. You could be right.

      But see… we come to a particular realm because we had created the causes for it and grabbed onto the bhava for that. If, according to what is being stated, ‘When the heart’s release by love has been developed and cultivated like this, any limited DEEDS THEY’VE DONE DON’T REMAIN OR PERSIST THERE.’ can only refer to the consequences of those deeds done there, – and not to the deeds in themselves as past events; they are done already anyway – which consequences in turn are the causes of the kamma vipaka for which we WOULD HAVE HAVE HAD to return there were it not for the practice dealt with in this Sutta.

      That is, if we eliminate here and now the causes of being born there again, the possibility of being born there cannot arise. But that will involve the debts we carry with beings we came in contact with there, and we can eliminate those even here and now. This is what I make out.

      We will have to wait.

      Metta

      y not

    • #15973
      y not
      Participant

      Embodied:

      Reading through again you ARE right.

      But how is it that the Buddha is giving instruction on how ‘attain’ the realm of Brahma? Which is also a trap in the sansaric journey?

      I saw another goal which actually was not what the sutta is about apparently.

      Thank you

      y not

    • #15980
      Embodied
      Spectator

      well sangha fellow to meditate half of the day, sometimes amidst the dangerous jungle, to sleep only 3h per night etc etc…it’s not for everyone.
      But on the other hand i like to think that the devas and the brahmas adepts of the Buddha are aware that nowadays, perhaps more than ever, every single person striving to accomplish Buddha Dhamma has added merit…look around you: the senses have never been more assaulted than nowadays…it’s a death-fight against the demon Kali.The demon, not the goddess.

    • #15982
      Lal
      Keymaster

      Y not said: “But how is it that the Buddha is giving instruction on how ‘attain’ the realm of Brahma? Which is also a trap in the sansaric journey?”

      That is correct. The Buddha NEVER advocated striving to be born ANYWHERE in the 31 realms. That is because one could not ELIMINATE future suffering that way, even if one could get temporary jhanic bliss. Even a billion years in a brahma loka is still a brief time compared to the sansaric time scale!

      This is a long story that I did not want to get into yet. But I will try to give a brief summary in a few days. I am on travel for a few days.

    • #15985
      y not
      Participant

      Hello Lal:

      I undertand. I will wait. I am writing now only because my interest will switch to other topics as well by that time and I may forget what I have in mind now.

      "one could not ELIMINATE future suffering that way, even if one could get temporary jhanic bliss"....except in the case where one had attained magga phala before getting to those realms.
      

      I had touched upon this in some earlier post months back: that beings in the higher realms (except the arupa lokas) will be of two ‘classes’ or ‘categories’, so to speak: those who had attained some stage of magga phala (and so have already eliminated the worst kinds of suffering in the future and are ‘paying’for the temporary bliss there by the subtle suffering they go through only while there) and those who had not, and these last are there only because of the temporary rewards of jhanas and are liable to fall back into the lower relams later. Clearly the distinction is there.

      Now the possibility arises: what of the case where someone with magga phala (leading to a brahma realm) INTENT on reaching that brahma realm, aware that it is temporary, aware of the subtle suffering and of death eventually, NEVERTHELESS asks for instructions how to get there, DESPITE all advice to abandon all that and strive for the Ultimate now?

      Is this what this sutta is all about?

    • #15986
      Embodied
      Spectator

      “is this what this Sutta is all about ?” it might be – imo.
      As for your awareness/acceptance of suffering: very well put.

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