Anguttara Nikaya


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Anguttara Nikāya
Sattaka Nipāta
Mahāyañña-Vagga

The Book of the
Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Sevens
Chapter V: The Great Sacrifice

Sutta 41

The Stations

Translated from the Pali by E.M. Hare.

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[1][olds][upal] THUS have I heard:

Once the Exalted One was dwelling near Sāvatthī,
at Jeta Grove, in Anāthapiṇḍika's Park.;
and there he addressed the monks, saying:

'Monks.'

'Yes, lord,' they replied;
and the Exalted One said:

'Monks, there are these seven stations of survival.[1]

What seven?

There are beings diverse in body,
diverse in mind;
for example men,[2] some devas[3]
and some who are utterly cast down.[4]

This is the first station of survival.

There are beings diverse in body
but uniform in mind;
for example devas reborn in Brahma's world
by reason of first (musing).[5]

This is the second station.

There are beings uniform in body
but diverse in mind;
for example the radiant devas.[6]

This is the third station.

There are beings uniform in body,
uniform in mind;
for example the lustrous devas.[7]

This is the fourth station.

There are beings, wholly gone beyond thoughts of form,[8]
gone to rest as to sense-reactions,
who, disregarding thoughts of the manifold,
have reached the sphere of infinite space, knowing,
"Infinite is space!"

This is the fifth station.

There are beings, wholly gone beyond the sphere of infinite space,
who have reached the sphere of infinite consciousness, knowing,
"Infinite is consciousness!"

This is the sixth station.

There are beings, wholly gone beyond the sphere of infinite consciousness,
who have reached the sphere of nothing whatever, knowing,
"There is nothing whatever!"

This is the seventh station.

Verily, monks, these are the seven stations of survival.'

 


[1] D. ii, 68; iii, 253, 263; below, p. 269. Comy. places of rebirth-consciousness; see Sakya, 158; Ind. Religion and Survival, 66.

[2] Comy. Even twins differ in speech, gait, etc.; as to mind, at rebirth there are three or two or no good conditions or motives, see Cpd. 50.

[3] Comy. Devas in the sense-world (Kāmaloka); some have blue bodies, some yellow and so forth; their minds are conditioned as in the case of men's.

[4] Comy. mentions Uttaramātā, Piyankaramātā, Phussamittā and Dhammaguttā - see Vism. trsl. 443; they differ in colour and size; their minds are as men's. The Vemānika-petas are also included in this group (vinipātikā) -i.e., are doomed to purgatory.

[5] They vary in size; their minds depend on first musing efficiency. See Cpd. 138 ff. for these and the following devas.

[6] Comy. These devas radiate light as in lightning flashes; their bodies are of the same size; their minds differ with their efficiency in the second and third musings.

[7] These do not radiate light in flashes; they are practised in the fourth musing.

[8] A. ii, 184; S. ii, 211.


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