Posted 30 May 2006 - 01:17 AM
Majjhima Nikaya 71 Tevijjavacchagotta Sutta 'To Vacchagotta on the
Threefold True Knowledge'
"Venerable sir, I have heard this: "The recluse Gotaka claims to be
omniscient and all-seeing, to have complete knowledge and visiion
thus: "Whether I am walking or standing or sleeping or awake,
knowledge and vision are continuously and uninterruptedly present to
me." Venerable sir, do those who speak thus say what has been said
by the Blessed One, and not misrepresent him with what is contrary to
fact? Do they explain in accordance with the Dhamma in such a way
that nothing which provides a ground for censure can be legitimatelly
deduced fromtheir assertion?"
"Vaccha, those who say thus do not say what has been said by me, but
misrepresent me with what is untrue and contrary to fact."
note 714 says: MA explains that even though part of the statement is
valid, the Buddha rejects the entire statementbecause of the portion
that is invalid. The part of the statement that is valid is the
assertion that the Buddha is omniscient and all-seeing; the part that
is excessive is the assertion that knowledge and vision are
continuously present to him. According to the Theravada tradition
the Buddha is omniscient in the sense that all knowable things are
potentially accessible to him. He cannot, however, know everything
simultaneously and must advert to whatever he wishes to know. At MN
90.8 the Buddha says that it is possible to know and see all, though
not simultaneously, and at AN 4.24/ii.24 he claims to know all that
can be seen, heard, sensed, and cognised, which is understood by the
Theravada tradition as an assertion of omniscience in the qualified
sense. See too in this connection Miln 102-7.
Majjhima Nikaya 90 Kannakatthala Sutta 'At Kannakatthala'
5. "Then King Pasenadi of Kosala said to the Blessed One: 'Venerable
sir, I have heard this: 'The recluse Gotama says "There is no recluse
or brahmin who is omniscient and all-seeing, who can claim to have
complete knowledge and vision; that is not possible." 'Venerable
sir, do those who speak thus say what has been said by the Blessed
One, and not misrepresent him with what is contrary to fact? Do they
explain in accordance with the Dhamma in such a way that nothing that
provides a ground for censure can be legitimately deduced from their
"Great King, those who speak thus do not say what has been said by
me, but misrepresent me with what is untrue and contrary to
"I recall having actually made the utterance in this way, great
king. 'There is no recluse or brahmin who knows all, who sees all,
simultaneously; that is not possible'.
note 846 says: MA: There is no one who can know and see all - past,
present and future - withone act of mental adverting, with one act of
consciousness; thus this problem is discussed in terms of a single
act of consciousness (ekacitta). On the question of the kind of
omniscience the Theravada tradition attributes to the Buddha, see n.
Posted 30 May 2006 - 01:17 AM
Venerable Bhikkhu Dhammapiyo,
Your question was a condition for me to look at several suttas and
commentaries. I shall proceed below.
op 04-04-2003 21:00 schreef Ven. Bhikkhu Dhammapiyo op
> Was the Buddha really omniscient?
> My understanding is that the Buddha was not an agnostic (one who does
> not know). In fact, He was a gnostic or 'one who knows' (in Pali-
> "janata") and was also called "Sabbannu", the 'All-knower". This means
> that to whatever subject Lord Buddha attended to, He knew all the
> contents of that subject. It does not mean that He always knew
> everything about every subject all at once, for this very claim was one
> He emphatically and specifically denied about himself.
N: The citta that knows an object falls away immediately, and so it is with
the Buddha's citta with omniscience. He directed his omniscience then to
this and then to that object, not to more than one object at a time. Each
citta can know only one object at a time.
I quote from the Commentary to the Abh. Sangaha (Title: Exposition of the
Topics of Abhidhamma, P.T.S., which just came out in one book together with
Summary of the Topics of Abhidhamma).
Ch 3, Miscellaneous Topics, under: impulsion, javana. It states:
<For, although the transcendent path (lokuttara magggacitta), and so on,
last for just one moment, since they possess the intrinsic nature of
impulsion, they are still regarded as [performing] the function of
impulsion; just as the omniscience [of a Buddha], although it has only one
object at a time in its range, since it has the capacity of knowing
everything, never loses the name [of omniscience].>
In the same Commentary we read in the Prologue:
<Herein the Perfectly Awakened One (sammasambuddha) is the Blessed One, who
has awakened to all dhammas perfectly and by himself. Perfectly and by his
own knowledge, which has been produced by his fulfilment of the perfections
both individually and collectively, he knows and understands all things,
whether conditioned or unconditioned, by virtue of penetrating to their true
and essential characteristics. Thus he has said: "Having known by myself, to
whom can I point [as my teacher]?...>
<Just as, by association with the rays of the sun, a lotus blossoms with the
beauty of the loveliest radiance, he himself, by association with the
knowledge of the highest path, blossoms perfectly with omniscience adorned
with immeasurable qualities...>
Here the Commentary refers to the Middle Length Sayings I, 26, The Ariyan
Quest where the Buddha said to Upaka:
<Victorious over all, omniscient am I,
Among all things undefiled,
Leaving all, through death of craving freed,
By knowing for myself, whom should I point to?
For me there is no teacher...>
We find the same text in the Dhammapada, vs. 353.
In the Exposition of the Topics of Abhidhamma, Ch 6, Materiality, it is said
with regard to the smile-producing citta, which is an ahetuka kiriyacitta :
<However, when a smile occurs for Buddhas with the [kiriya] smile-producing
consciousness it still involves knowledge since it is consequent upon the
knowledges of previous existences, the future or omniscience. In
consideration of this fact, it is stated in the [Abhidhamma] Commentary that
the consciousness which causes smiles arises at the conclusion of these
I would like to add more in a following post from the Visuddhimagga and the
Path of Discrimination.
Posted 30 May 2006 - 01:18 AM
In the Commentary to the Brahmjala Sutta, Tr. by Ven. Bikkhu Bodhi, (The
All-embracing Net of Views, p. 128) we find under <Deep, difficult to see> a
discussion about it that the plural <dhammas> is used for the objects of
omniscience, sabba~n~nuta~naa.na. I only quote parts, it is rather long. It
<Because it takes a multiplicity of objects... It knows the entire past,
thus it is knowledge of omniscience, thus it is the unobstructed knowledge,
etc (Pts I.1.73). Therefore, because it is associated with multiple classes
of consciousness, and because it takes a multiplicity of objects on the
successive occasions of its arising, it is described in the plural.>
There is a discussion in the Subco. :<Query: If this is so, how is it
possible for a single, limited type of knowledge to penetrate without
omission the entire range of the knowable with its inconceivable,
Reply: Who says the Buddha-knowledge is limited?.... With the abandoning of
the entire obstruction of the knowable, the Exalted One gained unobstructed
knowledge which occurs subject to his wish and is capable of comprehending
all dhammas in all their modes. By means of this knowledge the Exalted One
was capable of penetrating all dhammas in continuous succession (santanena);
therefore he was omniscient or all-knowing in the way fire is called
"all-consuming" through its ability to burn all its fuel in continuous
succession. He was not, however, omniscient in the sense that he could
comprehend all dhammas simultaneously. >
This text refers to the Tika of the Visuddhimagga, VII, 29, footnote 7,
where there is the same discussion.
The Visuddhimagga, in the "Recollection of the Buddha" explains all the
words we use when paying respect to the Buddha. As to "Endowed with clear
vision and virtuous conduct, vijja carana sampanno", we read VII, 32:
<Herein, the Blessed One's possession of clear vision consists in the
fulfilment of Omniscience (Ps. I, 131) , while his possession of conduct
consists in the fulfilment of the Great Compassion (Ps. 1, 126). He knows
through omniscience what is good and harmful for all beings, and through
compassion he warns them of harm and exhorts them to do good. >
The text of the Path of Discrimination (Patisambhidamagga) about omniscience
has been referred to in the previously quoted texts. I shall only quote a
part of it. We read in Ch 72 (p. 131):
<What is the Perfect One's omniscient knowledge?
It knows without exception all that is formed and unformed, thus it is
omniscient knowledge: it is without obstruction there, thus it is
All that is past it knows, thus it is omniscient knowledge: it is without
obstruction there, thus it is unobstructed knowledge.
All that is future it knows,...
All that is presently-arisen it knows...
Eye and visible objects: all that it knows...
Ear and sounds: all that it knows...
Nose and odours:all that it knows...
Tongue and flavours:all that it knows...
Body and tangible objects: all that it knows...
Mind and ideas (dhammas): all that it knows...>
After that the objects are the extent of the meaning of the three
characteristics of dhammas, knowledge of the extent of the meaning of direct
knowledge, etc. , of the khandhas, dhatus, bases (ayatanas) etc. Further on
<To the extent of what is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, encountered,
sought, considered by the mind, in the world with its deities, its Maras and
its Brahma Gods, in this genertaion with its ascetics and brahmans, with its
princes and men: all that it knows, thus it is omniscient knowledge: it is
without obstruction there, thus it is unobstructed knowledge.
Here in this world is naught unseen by him,
Naught uncognized, and naught unknowable;
He has experienced all that can be known:
Therefore the Perfect One is called All-seer... >
Posted 30 May 2006 - 03:52 AM
I give a short extract, "
pp. 402-404 trans. Walshe.
We see that according to this sutta the Buddha knew the names and activities of people countless years in the future from now.
Posted 02 June 2006 - 05:13 AM
these ten powers should now be understood to be set forth successively as
follows because (1) in the first place the Tathaagata sees with the
knowledge of the possible and the impossible the absence of obstruction by
defilement which is the possibility (reason) for the attaining or the
impossibility (non-reason) for the non-attaining of the destruction of the
cankers by teachable beings; this is owing to seeing the possibility
(thaana) for mundane right view and owing to seeing the absence of
possibility for assured wrong view. (2) Then with the knowledge of kamma
result he sees the absence in them of obstruction by kamma result; 
this is owing to seeing a rebirth-linking with three root-causes. (3) With
the knowledge of ways wheresoever going, he sees the absence of
obstruction by kamma; this is owing to seeing the absence of kamma with
immediate effect. **(4) With the knowledge of the numerous and varying
elements, he sees the specific habit (temperament) of those who are thus
free from obstructions for the purpose of teaching of the Law suitable [to
their habit]; this is owing to seing the diversity of the elements.** (5)
Then with the knowledge of different resolves, he sees their resolves;
this is for the purpose of teaching the Law according to their disposition
even if they have not accepted the means. (6) Then, in order to teach the
Law according to the ability and capacity of those whose resolves have
been seen in this way, with the knowledge of the disposition of the
faculties, he sees the disposition of the faculties; this is owing to
seeing the keen and dull state of faith, etc. (7) But owing to disposition
of the facultites being fully understood thus, if they are far off then
owing to mastery of the first jhaana, etc., he quickly goes to them by
means of his distinction in miraculous power; and having gone, seeing (8)
the state of their former existences with the knowledge of the
recollection of former lives, and (9) the present distinction of
consciousness with the knowledge of the penetration of others' minds to be
reached owing to the power of the Divine Eye; (10) with the power of the
knowledge of destruction of the cankers, he teaches the Law for the
destruction of the cankers owing to being rid of delusion about the way
that leads to the destruction of the cankers. Therefore it should be
understood that these ten powers were referred to in this sequence.
Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:30 AM
sorry its a bit long, and I know its not really your thing, but for
what its worth (and for others, too) here's from Visuddhimagga,
VII,note 7. [I think it bears recalling that this, I think, is about
pa~n~na developed to the highest possible degree, not about 'Someone
Who Knows Everything' - this is where I think you might be getting
mixed up, Herman]:
"'Is not unobstructed knowledge (anaavara.na-~naana) different from
omniscient knowledge (sabba~n~na-~naana)? Otherwise the words, 'Six
kinds of knowledge unshared [by disciples]' (Ps.i.3) would be
contradicted? [Note: The six kinds are: knowledge of what faculties
prevail in beings, knowledge of the inclinations and tendencies of
beings, knowledge of the Twin Marvel, knowledge of the attainmnent of
the great compassion, omniscient knowledge, and unobstructed knowledge
(see Ps.i.133).] - There is no contradiction, because two ways in
which a single kind of knowledge's objective field occurs are
described for the purpose of showing by means of this difference how
it is not shared by others. It is only one kind of knowledge; but it
is called omniscient knowledge because its objective field consists of
formed, unformed, and conventional (samutti) [i.e. conceptual] dhammas
without remainder, and it is called unobstructed knowledge because of
its unrestricted access to the objective field, because of absence of
obstruction. And it is said accordingly in the Pa.tisambhidaa: 'It
knows all the formed and the unformed without remainder, thus it is
omniscient knowledge. It has no obstruction therein, thus it is
unobstructed knowledge' (Ps.i.131), and so on. So they are not
different kinds of knowledge. And there must be no reservation,
otherwise it would follow that omniscient and unobstructed knowledge
had obstructions and did not make all dhammas its object. There is
not in fact a minimal obstruction to the Blessed One's knowledge: and
if his unobstrcted knowledge had obstructions and did not have all
dhammas as its object, there would be presence of obstruction where it
did not occur, and so it would not be unobstructed.
'Or alternatively, even if we suppose that they are different, still
it is omniscient knowledge itself that is intended as 'unhindered'
since it is that which occurs unhindered universally. And it is by
his attainment of that that the Blessed One is known as Omniscient,
All-Seer, Fully Enlightened, not because of awareness (avabodha) of
every dhamma at once, simultaneously (see M.ii.127). And it is said
accordingly in the Pa.tisambhidaa: 'This is a name derived from the
final liberation of the Enlightened Ones, the Blessed Ones, together
with the acquisition of omniscient knowledge at the root of the
Enlightenment Tree; this name 'Buddha' is a designation based on
realisation' (Ps.i.174). For the ability in the Blessed One's
continuity to penetrate all dhammas without exception was due to his
having completely attained to knowledge capable of becoming aware of
'Here it may be asked: But how then? When this knowledge occurs,
does it do so with respect to every field simultaneously, or
successively? For firstly, if it occurs simultaneously with respect
to every objective field, then with the simultaneous appearance of
formed dhammas classed as past, future and present, internal and
external, etc., and of unformed and conventional (conceptual) dhammas,
there would be no awareness of contrast (pa.tibhaaga), as happens in
one who looks at a painted canvas from a distance. That being so, it
follows that all dhammas become the objective field of the Blessed
One's knowledge in an undifferentiated form (aniruupita-ruupana), as
they do through the aspect of not-self to those who are exercising
insight thus 'All dhammas are not-self'...And those do not escape this
difficulty who say that the Enlightened One's knowledge occurs with
the characteristic of presence of all knowable dhammas as its
objective field, devoid of discriminative thinking (vikappa-rahita),
and universal in time (sabba-kaala) and that is why they are called
'All-seeing' and why it is said, 'The Naaga is concentrated walking
and he is concentrated standing'(?). They do not escape the
difficulty since because, by having the characteristic of presence as
its object, past, future, and conventional dhammas, which lact that
characteristic, would be absent. So it is wrong to say that it occurs
simultaneously with respect to every objective field. Then secondly,
if we say that it occurs successively with respect to every objective
field, this is wrong too. For when the knowable, classed in many
different ways according to birth, place, individual essence, etc.,
and direction, place, time, etc., is apprehended successively, then
penetration without remainder is not effected since the knowable is
infinite. And those are wrong too who say that the Blessed One is
All-seeing owing to his doing his defining by taking one part of the
knowable as that actually experienced ( anumaanika) since it is free
from doubt, because it is what is doubtfully discovered that is meant
by inferential knowledge in the world. And they are wrong because
there is no such defining by taking one part of the knowable as that
actually experienced and deciding that the rest is the same because of
the unequivocalness of its meaning, without making all of it actually
experienced. For then that 'rest' is not actually experienced; and if
it were actually experienced, it would no longer be 'the rest'.
'All that is no argument - Why not? - Because this is not a field for
ratiocination; for the Blessed One has said this: 'The objective
field of Enlightened One's is unthinkable, it cannot be thought out;
anyone who tried to think it out would reap madness and frustration'
(A.ii.80). The agreed explanation here is this: What ever the
Blessed One wants to know - either entirely or partially - there his
knowledge occurs as actual experience because it does so without
hindrance. And it has constant concentration because of the absence
of distraction. And it cannot occur in association with wishing of a
kind that is due to absence from the objective field of something that
he wants to know. There can be no exception to this because of the
words, 'All dhammas are available to the adverting of the Enlightened
One, the Blessed One, are available at his wish, are available to his
attention, are available to his thought' (Ps.ii. 195). And the
Blessed One's knowledge that has past and future as its objective
field is entirely actual experience since it is devoid of assumption
based on inference, tradition, or conjecture.
'And yet, even in that case, suppose he wanted to know the whole in
its entirety, then would his knowledge not occur without
differentiation in the whole objective field simultaneously? And so
there would still be no getting out of that difficulty?
"That is not so, because of its purifiedness. Because the Enlightened
One's objective field is purified and it is unthinkable. Otherwise
there would be no unthinkableness in the knowledge of the Enlightened
One, the Blessed One, if it occured in the same way as ordinary
people. So, although it occurs with all dhammas as its object, it
nevertheless does so making those dhammas quite clearly defined, as
though it had a single dhamma as its object. This is what is
unthinkable here. 'There is as much knowledge as there is knowable,
there is as much knowable as there is knowledge; the knowledge is
limited by the knowable, the knowable is limited by the knowledge'
(Ps.ii 195). So he is Fully Enlightened because he has rightly and by
himself discovered all dhammas together and separately, simultaneously
and successively, according to his wish'(Pm.190-91).
Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:59 AM
Â Namo Tassa Bhagavato Arahato SammĂ˘ Sambuddhassa! Â
Taken from AccessToInsight.org1
Translated from Pali by Ă‘anamoli Thera & Bhikkhu Bodhi
THE GREAT DISCOURSE ON THE LION'S ROAR - III
Majjhima NikĂ˘ya 12 - Maha-sihanada Sutta2
Ten Powers of a TathĂ˘gata (Buddha), Powers 6 - 10Continued from previous
Commentary: This is the continuation of the 10 powers, all of which, only a
Samma-Sambuddha possesses. See the first five powers here.
Â Â 15. (6) "Again, the TathĂ˘gata understands as it actually is the
disposition of the faculties of other beings, other persons. That too is a
Explanation: Power 6 - The Lord Buddha understands the various levels of
development of the five faculties of faith/cofidence (saddhĂ˘), energy (viriya),
mindfulness (sati), concentration (samĂ˘dhi) and wisdom (paĂ±Ă±Ă˘) of all beings
and this allows him to claim the highest place among all beings, speak
fearlessly in any assembly and allows him to set rolling the Wheel of the Dhamma
(teach/expound the Dhamma teachings).
Â Â 16. (7) "Again, the TathĂ˘gata understands as it actually is the
defilement, the cleansing and the emergence in regard to the jhanas,
liberations, concentrations and attainments. That too is a TathĂ˘gata's
Explanation: Power 7 - The Lord Buddha understands how the mind becomes
defiled, how the mind is cleansed and the cleansing and the emergence of the
mind from jhĂ˘nas, liberations (vimutti), concentrations (samĂ˘dhi) and
attainments and this allows him to claim the highest place among all beings...
Â Â 17. (8) "Again, the TathĂ˘gata recollects his manifold past lives, that
is, one birth, two births, three births, four births, five births, ten births,
twenty births, thirty births, forty births, fifty births, a hundred births, a
thousand births, a hundred thousand births, many aeons of world-contraction,
many aeons of world-expansion, many aeons of world-contraction and expansion:
'There I was so named, of such a clan, with such an appearance, such was my
nutriment, such my experience of pleasure and pain, such my life-term; and
passing away from there, I reappeared elsewhere; and there too I was so named,
of such a clan, with such an appearance, such was my nutriment, such my
experience of pleasure and pain, such my life-term; and passing away from there,
I reappeared here.' Thus with their aspects and particulars he recollects his
manifold past lives. That too is a TathĂ˘gata's power...
Explanation: Power 8 - The Lord Buddha is able to re-collect many of his past
lives with details including his clan and name in each life time, the food/drink
that he consumed, the pleasures/pains experienced, his life-term and where he
was re-born next with those details and this allows him to claim the highest
place among all beings...
Â Â 18. (9) "Again, with the divine eye, which is purified and surpasses the
human, the TathĂ˘gata sees beings passing away and reappearing, inferior and
superior, fair and ugly, fortunate and unfortunate, and he understands how
beings pass on according to their actions thus: 'These worthy beings who were
ill-conducted in body, speech and mind, revilers of noble ones, wrong in their
views, giving effect to wrong view in their actions, on the dissolution of the
body,  after death, have reappeared in a state of deprivation, in a bad
destination, in perdition, even in hell; but these worthy beings who were
well-conducted in body, speech and mind, not revilers of noble ones, right in
their views, giving effect to right view in their actions, on the dissolution of
the body, after death, have reappeared in a good destination, even in the
heavenly world.' Thus with the divine eye, which is purified and surpasses the
human, he sees beings passing away and
reappearing, inferior and superior, fair and ugly, fortunate and unfortunate,
and he understands how beings pass on according to their actions. That too is a
Explanation: Power 9 - The Lord Buddha is capable of seeing other beings as
they are born and pass away that are inferior/superior, attractive/unattractive
and unfortunate/fortunate according to their negative or positive actions in
mind, speech and body (kamma), such as reviling or revering noble ones (Comy.
'higher' beings along the Noble Eightfold Path) and having incorrect or correct
ideas and as a result of these ideas acting in a negative or positive way and
this allows him to claim the highest place among all beings....
Â Â 19. (10) "Again, by realizing it for himself with direct knowledge, the
TathĂ˘gata here and now enters upon and abides in the deliverance of mind and
deliverance by wisdom that are taintless with the destruction of the taints.
That too is a TathĂ˘gata's power that a TathĂ˘gata has, by virtue of which he
claims the herd-leader's place, roars his lion's roar in the assemblies, and
sets rolling the Wheel of Brahma.
Explanation: Power 10 - The Lord Buddha enters and dwells in the
deliverance/emancipation/release/unbinding (NibbĂ˘na) of the mind, which is free
of defilments, through direct knowledge and this allows him to claim the highest
place among all beings....
Â Â 20. "The TathĂ˘gata has these ten TathĂ˘gata's powers, possessing which he
claims the herd-leader's place, roars his lion's roar in the assemblies, and
sets rolling the Wheel of Brahma.
Explanation: The Lord Buddha has these 10 powers that allow him to claim the
highest place among all beings, speak fearlessly in any assembly and allows him
to set rolling the Wheel of the Dhamma (teach/expound the Dhamma teachings).
Â Â 21. "SĂ˘riputta, when I know and see thus, should anyone say of me: 'The
recluse Gotama does not have any superhuman states, any distinction in knowledge
and vision worthy of the noble ones. The recluse Gotama teaches a Dhamma
(merely) hammered out by reasoning, following his own line of inquiry as it
occurs to him' â€” unless he abandons that assertion and that state of mind and
relinquishes that view, then as (surely as if he had been) carried off and put
there he will wind up in hell.5 Just as a bhikkhu possessed of virtue,
concentration and wisdom would here and now enjoy final knowledge, so it will
happen in this case, I say, that unless he abandons that assertion and that
state of mind and relinquishes that view, then as (surely as if he had been)
carried off and put there he will wind up in hell.
Explanation: The Lord Buddha explains to Ven. SĂ˘riputta that if anyone were to
wrongly say that the Lord Buddha did not have any superhuman powers, higher
knowledges that a high/noble one can have and only teaches the Dhamma from
reasoning, following a line of investigation and if that person does not abandon
this opinion/view, then as if s/he were carried off and put there s/he would go
to hell after death; in the same way a monk who posses virtue/morality (sĂ®la),
concentration (samĂ˘dhi) and wisdom (paĂ±Ă±Ă˘) would be assured of final
knowledge/realization (NibbĂ˘na) right here and now.
Notes1. More suttas from AccessToInsight.org can be found here
2. This sutta can be found in full here
http://www.accesstoi...n.012.ntbb.html and an alternate
translation of this sutta can be found here
3. Vbh. Sections 814-27 gives a detailed analysis. Comy. states the meaning more
concisely as the Tathagata's knowledge of the superiority and inferiority of
beings' faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, concentration and wisdom.
4.Vbh. Section 828: "The defilement (sankilesa) is a state partaking of
deterioration; cleansing (vodana) is a state partaking of distinction; emergence
(vutthana) is both cleansing and the rising out of an attainment. The eight
liberations (vimokkha) are enumerated, e.g., at DN 15/ii,70-71, and comprise
three liberations pertaining to the realm of material form, the four immaterial
attainments, and the cessation of perception and feeling. The nine attainments
(samapatti) are the four jhanas, the four immaterial attainments, and cessation.
5. The idiom yathabhatam nikkhitto evam niraye is knotty; the rendering here
follows the gloss of Comy.: "He will be put in hell as if carried off and put
there by the wardens of hell." Although such a fate may sound excessively severe
merely for verbal denigration, it should be remembered that he is maligning a
Fully Enlightened Buddha with a mind of hatred, and his intention in so doing is
to discourage others from entering upon the path that could lead them to
complete liberation from suffering.
Posted 11 May 2012 - 02:23 AM
http://groups.yahoo..../message/96401: What kind of wisdom is in field of buddha only? Can you list it?
or give some links to visudhimagga or maybe other book.
[S: Lots of quotes in 'Useful Posts' under 'Omniscience'.]
Here's another one from the Sub-cy to the Brahmajaala Sutta (transl. by B.Bodhi,
BPS,p.123), which caught my eye the other day:
"Query: .....how is possible for a single, limited type of knowledge to
penetrate without omission the entire range of the knowable with its
inconceivable, immeasurable sub-divisions?
"Reply: Who says the Buddha-knowledge is limited? Like the knowable itself the
Buddha-knowledge is infinite. For it is said: 'As far as that knowledge extends,
so far does the knowable extend; as far as the knowable extends, so far does
that knowledge extend' (Pts.1.i.72). It may be objected that if the knowable,
with its numerous sub-divisions by way of class, plane, specific nature, etc.,
and by way of direction, place, time, etc., is apprehended in succession, it is
impossible to penetrate it in its totality, without remainder.
"But that is not so. Why? Because whatever it is that the Exalted One wishes to
know, whether in its entirety or in part, that he knows by direct experience
through the unimpeded coursing (of his knowledge) in that object. And on the
basis of the statement, 'The knowledge of the Exalted Buddha is subject to his
wish,' it cannot be denied that the Exalted Buddha, who is always concentrated
with an undistracted mind, is able to know by direct experience whatever he
"For the Buddha's knowledge, at the time he is comprehending numerous dhammas,
does not occur in an undifferentiated mode like the cognition of those seeing a
painting from a distance or the insight of those contemplating all dhammas as
"This should be accepted, for the spiritual power (aanubhaava) of the
Buddha-knowledge is inconceivable. Thence it is said: 'the objective domain of
the Buddha is inconceivable (A.IV.8.7). This is the ruling:-
"With the abandoning of the entire obstruction of the knowable, the Exalted One
gained the unobstructed knowledge which occurs subject to his wish and is
capable of comprehending all dhammas in all their modes. By means of this
knowledge the Exalted One was capable of penetrating all dhammas in continuous
succession (santaanena); therefore he was omniscient or all-knowing in the way
fire is called 'all-consuming' through its ability to burn all its fuel in
continuous succession. He was not, however, omniscient in the sense that he
could comprehend all dhammas simultaneously."
S: For a very detailed commentary on this, including on the distinction between
'unobstructed knowledge' (anaavara.na-~naa.na) vs 'omniscient knowledge'
(sabba~n~nula-~naa.na) and the six kinds of knowledge "unshared by disciples"
can be found in n.7 to Ch VII of the Visuddhimagga, transl. by Nanamoli. It
comes from the Tiika to the Visuddhimagga.
The kinds of knowledge, as mentioned there are:
1. what faculties prevail in beings
2. knowledge of the inclinations and tendencies of beings
3. knowledge of the Twin Marvel
4. knowledge of the attainment of the great compassion
5. omniscient knowledge
6. unobstructed knowledge