bahula-kamma: 'habitual karma': s. karma.
bala: 'powers'. Among various groups of powers the following five are most
frequently met with in the texts: (1) faith (saddhā, q.v.), (2) energy (viriya,
q.v.), (3) mindfulness (sati, q.v.), (4) concentration (samādhi, q.v.), (5)
wisdom (pa˝˝ā, q.v.).
Their particular aspect, distinguishing them from the corresponding 5 spiritual
faculties (indriya, q.v.), is that they are unshakable by their opposites: (1) the
power of faith is unshakable by faithlessness (unbelief); (2) energy, by laziness; (3)
mindfulness, by forgetfulness; (4) concentration, by distractedness; (5) wisdom, by
ignorance (see Pts.M., Đāna Kathā). They represent, therefore, the aspect of firmness
in the spiritual faculties.
According to A.V. 15, the power (1) becomes manifest in the 4 qualities of the
Stream-winner (sotāpannassa angāni, q.v.), (2) in the 4 right efforts (s. padhāna),
(3) in the 4 foundations of mindfulness (satipatthāna, q.v.), (4) in the 4
absorptions (jhāna, q.v.), (5) in the (full comprehension of the) 4 Noble Truths (sacca,
Cf. S. XLVIII, 43; S. L. (Bala Samyutta).
In A. VII, 3, the powers of moral shame (hiri, q.v.) and moral dread (ottappa)
are added to the aforementioned five Several other groups of 2 (s. patisankhāna-bala),
4, 5 and more powers are mentioned in the texts. - About the 10 powers of a Buddha, s. dasa-bala.
balance of mental faculties: indriya samatta (q.v.).
bases: The 12 of the perceptual process: āyatana (q.v.).
beautiful: sobhana (q.v.).
beauty, deliverance through the perception of: cf. vimokkha (II. 3) To
hold for beautiful or pure (subha) what is impure (asubha), is one of the 4
perversions (s. vipallāsa).
behaviour, morality consisting in good: abhisamācārikasīla (q.v.) .
being, living: satta (q.v.); further s. puggala. - Belief in
eternal personality: bhava-ditthi (s. ditthi), sassata-ditthi (q.v.).
beings, The 9 worlds of: sattāvāsa (q.v.).
belief, blind: s. indriya-samatta.
bhangānupassanā-˝āna: 'knowledge consisting in contemplation of dissolution'
(of all forms of existence), is one kind of insight: s. visuddhi (VI, 2).
bhava: 'becoming', 'process of existence', consists of 3 planes: sensuous
existence (kāma-bhava), fine-material existence (rūpa-bhava), immaterial
existence (arūpa-bhava). Cf. loka.
The whole process of existence may be divided into two aspects:
(1) Karma-process (kamma-bhava), i.e. the karmically active side of existence,
being the cause of rebirth and consisting in wholesome and unwholesome volitional actions.
See Karma, paticca-samuppāda (IX).
(2) Karma-produced rebirth, or regenerating process (uppattibhava), i.e. the
karmically passive side of existence consisting in the arising and developing of the
karma-produced and therefore morally neutral mental and bodily phenomena of existence. Cf.
Tab. - (App.).
bhāva: (feminine and masculine) 'nature', refers to the sexual characteristics
of the body, and belongs to the group of corporeality (s. khandha). It is a
commentarial term for the faculties of femininity and masculinity (s. indriya 7,
bhava-ditthi: 'belief in being' (eternal personality); s. sassataditthi,
bhāvanā: 'mental development' (lit. 'calling into existence, producing') is
what in English is generally but rather vaguely called 'meditation'. One has to
distinguish 2 kinds: development of tranquillity (samatha-bhāvanā), i.e.
concentration (samādhi), and development of insight (vipassanā-bhāvanā),
i.e. wisdom (pa˝˝ā).
These two important terms, tranquillity and insight (s. samatha-vipassanā), are
very often met with and explained in the Sutta, as well as in the Abhidhamma.
Tranquillity (samatha) is the concentrated, unshaken, peaceful, and therefore
undefiled state of mind, whilst insight (vipassanā) is the intuitive insight into
the impermanence, misery and impersonality (anicca, dukkha, anattā; s. tilakkhana)
of all bodily and mental phenomena of existence, included in the 5 groups of existence,
namely, corporeality, feeling, perception, mental formations and consciousness; s. khandha.
Tranquillity, or concentration of mind, according to Sankhepavannana (Commentary to
Abhidhammattha-sangaha), bestows a threefold blessing: favourable rebirth, present happy
life, and purity of mind which is the condition of insight. Concentration (samādhi)
is the indispensable foundation and precondition of insight by purifying the mind from the
5 mental defilements or hindrances (nīvarana, q.v.), whilst insight (vipassanā)
produces the 4 supra mundane stages of holiness and deliverance of mind. The Buddha
therefore says: "May you develop mental concentration, o monks; for who is mentally
concentrated, sees things according to reality" (S. XXII, 5). And in Mil. it is said:
"Just as when a lighted lamp is brought into a dark chamber, the lamp-light Will
destroy the darkness and produce and spread the light, just so will insight, once arisen,
destroy the darkness of ignorance and produce the light of knowledge."
Vis.M III-XI gives full directions how to attain full concentration and the
absorptions (jhāna, q.v.) by means of the following 40 meditation subjects (kammatthāna):
10 kasina-exercises (s. kasina). These produce the 4 absorptions
10 loathsome subjects (asubha, q.v.). These produce the 1st absorption.
10 recollections (anussati, q.v.): of the Buddha (buddhānussati), the
Doctrine (dhammānussati), the Brotherhood of the Noble Ones (sanghānussati),
morality, liberality, the heavenly beings, death (maranasati, q.v. ), the body (kāyagatāsati,
q.v.), in-and-outbreathing (ānāpāna-sati, q.v.) and peace (upasamānussati,
q.v.). Among these, the recollection (or mindfulness) of in-and-out breathing may produce
all the 4 absorptions, that of the body the 1st absorption, the rest only
neighbourhood-concentration (upacāra-samādhi, s. samādhi).
4 sublime abodes (brahma-vihāra, q.v.): loving-kindness, compassion, altruistic
joy, equanimity (mettā, karunā, muditā, upekkhā). Of these, the first 3
exercises may produce 3 absorptions, the last one the 4th absorption only.
4 immaterial spheres (arūpāyatana, s. jhāna): of unbounded space,
unbounded consciousness, nothingness, neither-perception-nor-non-perception. These are
based upon the 4th absorption.
1 perception of the loathsomeness of food (āhāre patikkūla-sa˝˝ā), which
may produce neighbourhood-concentration
1 analysis of the 4 elements (catudhātu-vavatthāna, s. dhātu-vavatthāna),
which may produce neighbourhood-concentration.
Mental development forms one of the 3 kinds of meritorious action (pu˝˝a-kiriya-vatthu,
q.v.). 'Delight in meditation' (bhāvanā-rāmatā) is one of the noble usages (ariya-vamsa,
bhāvanā-bala: s. patisankhāna-bala.
bhāvanā-maya-pa˝˝ā: wisdom based on mental development'; s. pa˝˝ā
bhavanga-santāna: 'continuity of subconsciousness'; s. santāna
bhavanga-sota and bhavanga-citta: The first term may tentatively be
rendered as the 'undercurrent forming the condition of being, or existence', and the
second as 'subconsciousness', though, as will be evident from the following, it differs in
several respects from the usage of that term in Western psychology. Bhavanga (bhava-anga),
which, in the canonical works, is mentioned twice or thrice in the Patthāna, is explained
in the Abhidhamma commentaries as the foundation or condition (kārana) of
existence (bhava), as the sine qua non of life, having the nature of a
process, lit. a flux or stream (sota). Herein, since time immemorial, all
impressions and experiences are, as it were, stored up, or better said, are functioning,
but concealed as such to- full consciousness, from where however they occasionally emerge
as subconscious phenomena and approach the threshold of full consciousness, or crossing it
become fully conscious. This so-called 'subconscious life-stream' or undercurrent of life
is that by which might be explained the faculty of memory, paranormal psychic phenomena,
mental and physical growth, karma and rebirth. etc. An alternative rendering is
It should be noted that bhavanga-citta is a karma-resultant state of
consciousness (vipāka, q.v.), and that, in birth as a human or in higher forms of
existence, it is always the result of good, or wholesome karma (kusala-kamma-vipāka),
though in varying degrees of strength (s. patisandhi, end of the article). The same
holds true for rebirth consciousness (patisandhi) and death consciousness (cuti),
which are only particular manifestations of subconsciousness. In Vis.M XIV it is said:
"As soon as rebirth-consciousness (in the embryo at the time of conception) has
ceased, there arises a similar subconsciousness with exactly the same object, following
immediately upon rebirth-consciousness and being the result of this or that karma
(volitional action done in a former birth and remembered there at the moment before
death). And again a further similar state of subconsciousness arises. Now, as long as no
other consciousness arises to interrupt the continuity of the life-stream, so long the
life-stream, like the flow of a river, rises in the same way again and again, even during
dreamless sleep and at other times. In this way one has to understand the continuous
arising of those states of consciousness in the life-stream." Cf. vi˝˝āna-kicca.
For more details, s. Fund. 11. (App.).
bhava-tanhā: 'craving for (eternal) existence'; s. tanhā.
bhavāsava: 'canker of existence'; s. āsava.
bhayatupatthāna-˝āna: 'knowledge consisting in the awareness of terror', is
one of those kinds of insight-knowledge that form the 'purification by knowledge and
vision of the path-progress' (s. visuddhi, VI.).
bhikkhu: A fully ordained disciple of the Buddha is called a bhikkhu.
"Mendicant monk" may be suggested as the closest equivalent for
"Bhikkhu", literally it means "he who begs" but bhikkhus do not beg.
They silently stand at the door for alms. They live on what is spontaneously given by the
supporters. He is not a priest as he is no mediator between God and man. He has no vows
for life, but he is bound by his rules which he takes of his own accord. He leads a life
of voluntary poverty and celibacy. If he is unable to live the Holy Life, he can discard
the robe at any time.
bhojane matta˝˝utā: 'knowing the measure in eating'.
"Now, o monks, the monk wisely reflecting partakes of his almsfood, neither for
pastime, nor for indulgence, nor to become beautiful or handsome, but only to maintain and
support this body, to avoid harm and to assist the holy life, knowing: 'In this way I
shall dispel the former pain (of hunger, etc.) and no new pain shall I let arise, and long
life, blamelessness and ease will be my share ' This, o monks, is knowing the measure in
eating." (A. III. 16). "How o monks, would it be possible for Nanda to lead the
absolutely pure life of holiness, if he did not watch over his senses and did not know the
measure in eating?" (A. VII, 9).
biases: s. āsava.
birth process: upapatti-bhava: s. bhava. Further s. patisandhi,
bodhi (from verbal root budhi, to awaken, to understand): awakenment,
enlightenment, supreme knowledge. "(Through Bodhi) one awakens from the slumber or
stupor (inflicted upon the mind) by the defilements (kilesa, q.v.) and comprehends
the Four Noble Truths (sacca, q.v.)" (Com. to M. 10).
The enlightenment of a Buddha is called sammā-sambodhi (q.v.) 'perfect
enlightenment'. The faith (saddhā, q.v.) of a lay follower of the Buddha is
described as "he believes in the enlightenment of the Perfect One" (saddahati
Tathāgatassa bodhim: M. 53, A. III, 2).
As components of the state of enlightenment and contributory factors to its
achievement, are mentioned in the texts: the 7 factors of enlightenment (bojjhanga
(q.v.)= bodhi-anga) and the 37 'things pertaining to enlightenment' (bodhipakkhiya-dhammā,
q.v.). In one of the later books of the Sutta-Pitaka, the Buddhavamsa, 10 bodhipācana-dhammā
are mentioned, i.e. qualities that lead to the ripening of perfect enlightenment; these
are the 10 perfections (pāramī, q.v.).
There is a threefold classification of enlightenment: 1. that of a noble disciple (sāvaka-bodhi,
q.v.). i.e. of an Arahat, 2. of an Independently Enlightened One (pacceka-bodhi,
q.v.), and 3. of a Perfect Enlightened One (sammā-sambodhi). This 3-fold division,
however, is of later origin, and in this form it neither occurs in the canonical texts nor
in the older Sutta commentaries. The closest approximation to it is found in a verse sutta
which is probably of a comparatively later period, the Treasure Store Sutta (Nidhikkanda
Sutta) of the Khuddakapātha, where the following 3 terms are mentioned in stanza 15:
pacceka-bodhi, buddha-bhūmi (see Khp. Tr., pp. 247f.).
The commentaries (e.g. to M., Buddhavamsa, Cariyapitaka) generally give a 4-fold
explanation of the word bodhi: 1. the tree of enlightenment, 2. the holy path (ariya-magga),
3. Nibbāna, 4 omniscience (of the Buddha: sabba˝˝utā-˝āna). As to (2), the
commentaries quote Cula-Nidesa where bodhi is defined as the knowledge relating to
the 4 paths (of Stream-entry, etc.; catūsu maggesu ˝āna).
Neither in the canonical texts nor in the old commentaries is it stated that a follower
of the Buddha may choose between the three kinds of enlightenment and aspire either to
become a Buddha, a Pacceka-Buddha, or an Arahat-disciple. This conception of a choice
between three aspirations is, however, frequently found in present-day Theravāda
countries, e.g. in Sri Lanka.
bodhipakkhiya-dhammā: The 37 'things pertaining to enlightenment', or
'requisites of enlightenment' comprise the entire doctrines of the Buddha. They are:
the 4 foundations of mindfulness (satipatthāna, q.v.),
the 4 right efforts (s. padhāna),
the 4 roads to power (iddhi-pāda, q.v.),
the 5 spiritual faculties (indriya; s. bala),
the 5 spiritual powers (bala, q.v.),
the 7 factors of enlightenment (bojjhanga, q.v.),
the Noble 8-fold Path (s. magga).
In M. 77 all the 37 bodhipakkhiya-dhammā are enumerated and explained though
not called by that name. A detailed explanation of them is given in Vis.M XXII. In
S.XLVII, 51, 67, only the five spiritual faculties (indriya) are called
and in the Jhāna Vibhanga, only the 7 factors of enlightenment (bojjhanga).
See The Requisites of Enlightenment, by Ledi Sayadaw (WHEEL 169/172).
Bodhisatta: 'Enlightenment Being', is a being destined to Buddhahood, a future
Buddha. According to the traditional belief a Bodhisatta, before reaching his last birth
as a Buddha on this earth, is living in the Tusita-heaven (s. deva), the heaven of
bliss. Cf. A. IV, 127; VIII, 70.
In the Pāli Canon and commentaries, the designation 'Bodhisatta' is given only to
Prince Siddhattha before his enlightenment and to his former existences. The Buddha
himself uses this term when speaking of his life prior to enlightenment (e.g. M. 4, M.
26). Bodhisattahood is neither mentioned nor recommended as an ideal higher than or
alternative to Arahatship; nor is there any record in the Pāli scriptures of a disciple
declaring it as his aspiration. - See bodhi.
bodily action (wholesome or unwholesome); s. karma, karma formations - Right b.a.
= sammā-kammanta; s. magga.
bodily postures, the 4: iriyā-patha (q.v.)
body: kāya (q.v.) Contemplation on the b. is one of the 4 satipatthāna
body-witness: kāya-sakkhi (q.v.).
bojjhanga: 'the 7 factors of enlightenment', are: mindfulness (sati-sambojjhanga;
s. sati), investigation of the law (dhamma-vicaya-sambojjhanga), energy (viriya-sambojjhanga;
s. viriya, padhāna), rapture (pīti-sambojjhanga, q.v.) tranquillity
(passaddhi-sambojjhanga, q.v.), concentration (samādhi-sambojjhanga, q.v.),
equanimity (upekkhā, q.v.). "Because they lead to enlightenment, therefore
they are called factors of enlightenment" (S. XLVI, 5).
Though in the 2nd factor, dhamma-vicaya, the word dhamma is taken by most
translators to stand for the Buddhist doctrine, it probably refers to the bodily and
mental phenomena (nāma-rūpa-dhammā) as presented to the investigating mind by
mindfulness, the 1st factor. With that interpretation, the term may be rendered by
'investigation of phenomena'.
In A.X. 102, the 7 factors are said to be the means of attaining the threefold wisdom
They may be attained by means of the 4 foundations of mindfulness (satipatthāna,
q.v.), as it is said in S. XLVI, 1 and explained in M. 118:
(1) "Whenever, o monks, the monk dwells contemplating the body (kāya), feeling
(vedanā), mind (citta) and mind-objects (dhammā), strenuous,
clearly-conscious, mindful, after subduing worldly greed and grief, at such a time his
mindfulness is present and undisturbed; and whenever his mindfulness is present and
undisturbed, at such a time he has gained and is developing the factor of enlightenment
'mindfulness' (sati-sambojjhanga), and thus this factor of enlightenment reaches
(2) "Whenever, while dwelling with mindfulness, he wisely investigates, examines
and thinks over the law ... at such a time he has gained and is developing the factor of
enlightenment 'investigation of the law' (dhamma-vicaya░) ....
(3) "Whenever, while wisely investigating his energy is firm and unshaken ... at
such a time he has gained and is developing the factor of enlightenment 'energy'
(4) "Whenever in him, while firm in energy, arises supersensuous rapture ... at
such a time he has gained and is developing the factor of enlightenment 'rapture' (pīti░)
(5) "Whenever, while enraptured in mind, his body and his mind become composed ...
at such a time he has gained and is developing the factor of enlightenment 'tranquillity' (passaddhi░).
(6) "Whenever, while being composed in his body and happy, his mind becomes
concentrated ... at such a time he has gained and is developing the factor of
enlightenment 'concentration' (samādhi░)
(7) "Whenever he looks with complete indifference on his mind thus
concentrated ... at such a time he has gained and is developing the factor of
enlightenment 'equanimity' (upekkhā).
Literature: Bojjhanga Samyutta (S. XLVI); Bojjhanga Vibh. - For the
conditions leading to the arising of each of the factors, see the Com. to Satipatthāna
Sutta (Way of Mindfulness, by Soma Thera; 3rd ed., 1967, BPS). Further, The 'Seven Factors
of Enlightenment, by Piyadassi Thera (WHEEL 1.)