PTS: Middle Length Sayings I, #1: Discourse on the Synopsis of Fundamentals, Horner, trans., pp 3.
WP: Middle Length Discourses of the Buddha: The Root of All Things, Bhikkhu Nanamoli and Bhikkhu Bodhi, trans., pp 83
Examining the Mulapariyaya - Analysis
The Root Sequence, Bhikkhu Thanissaro, translation of the Mulapariyaya
Knowledge of Former Habitations.
|Pali||MO||Hare||Horner||Punnaji||Bodhi||Rhys Davids||(Mrs)Rhys Davids||Thanissaro||Walshe||Woodward|
|Subhaki.n.na||Luminescent Beings||all-lustrous devas||the Lustrous ones||the gods of Refulgent Glory||Luminescent Devas||Luminescent Devas||the gods of refulgent glory||Subhakinna Gods|
Pali Text Society
Pali English Dictionary
Edited by T. W. Rhys Davids and William Stede
Subha: [Vedic .subhas fr. subh; cp. sobhati] shining, bright, beautiful, auspicious, lucky, pleasant, welfare, good, pleasantness, cleanliness, beauty, pleasure
+ ki.n.na: the lustrous devas, a class of devas
Ki.n.na: 1. ferment, yeast; 2. strewn, scattered, covered
Abhassara and Subhakinna Gods. The Ambassadors of the Heart, and the Pure of Heart. Subsisting on Piti and Metta, they traverse the sky, emitting cries of joy: "Oh the Joy! Oh the Joy!" Hierarchies in Hindu and Buddhist Cosmology usually progress towards less and less, (or, more precisely for the Hindu system, towards greater and greater modesty) so the differentiation between the two sets of gods should be in the perceptability of their form. "Splendour" is sometimes mentioned in relation to the gods, and in this case those of more power (of goodness in the kamma that caused this rebirth) are said to be more splendid, of brighter light and clearer color. Most translators translate the two as Radiant ones and Luminescent ones respectively, but the breakdown of the word for Subhaki.n.na would indicate the reverse. I can't tell you, and follow the others in this. One set Radiates Light, you do not see the form, you see light radiate from the periphery of the form, the other set, by contrast do not emit light, but their shape is visable, so they are said to be luminous.