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Free Online Benevloent Awakened One JC PURE INSPIRATION to Attain NIBBĀNA the Eternal Bliss and for free birds 🐦 🦢 🦅 to grow fruits 🍍 🍊 🥑 🥭 🍇 🍌 🍎 🍉 🍒 🍑 🥝 vegetables 🥦 🥕 🥗 🥬 🥔 🍆 🥜 🪴 🌱 🎃 🫑 🍅🍜 🧅 🍄 🍝 🥗 🥒 🌽 🍏 🫑 🌳 🍓 🍊 🥥 🌵 🍈 🌰 🇧🇧 🫐 🍅 🍐 🫒 Youniversity
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Kushinara NIBBĀNA Bhumi Pagoda White Home, Puniya Bhumi Bengaluru, Prabuddha Bharat International.

August 2020
« Jul   Sep »
LESSON 3421 Fri 21 Aug 2020 Discovery of Awakened One with Awareness Universe (DAOAU) For The Welfare, Happiness, Peace of All Sentient and Non-Sentient Beings and for them to Attain Eternal Peace as Final Goal. KUSHINARA NIBBANA BHUMI PAGODA-It is a 18 feet Dia All White Pagoda with may be a table or, but be sure to having above head level based on the usual use of the room. in 116 CLASSICAL LANGUAGES Through http://sarvajan.ambedkar.org At WHITE HOME 668, 5A main Road, 8th Cross, HAL III Stage, Prabuddha Bharat Puniya Bhumi Bengaluru Magadhi Karnataka State PRABUDDHA BHARAT Dr B.R.Ambedkar thundered “Main Bharat Baudhmay karunga.” (I will make India Buddhist) All Aboriginal Awakened Societies Thunder ” Hum Prapanch Prabuddha Bharatmay karunge.” (We will make world Prabuddha Prapanch Training on Kushinara Land of Lord Buddha attained Nibbana needs donation of latest miniature 3D 360 degree cameras to capture places in 360 degree circular vision like circarama and 3D 360 deg projector to be used in the Meditation as practiced in Lumbini, Buddha Gaya, Saranath, Kushinara and also Bethlehem, Mecca Madhina and all places practicing Kindness and compssion including for the physically disabled 18ft Dia circular pagoda for raising funds to help monks, needy poor and physically disabled people and swimmers. The Buddha died at the age of 80 by the banks of a river at Kusinari in Prabuddha Bharat. Lying on his side with his head propped up by his hand and a serene expression, the Buddha passed into Nibbana. This moment is captured in the image of the Reclining Buddha which can be seen in many statues throughout Thailand, most famously at Wat Po in Bangkok. Nibbana is a blissful state with no suffering and no reincarnation.
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Posted by: site admin @ 8:00 am
 LESSON 3421 Fri 21 Aug 2020

Discovery of  Awakened One with Awareness Universe (DAOAU) 


The Welfare, Happiness, Peace of All Sentient and Non-Sentient Beings and for them to Attain Eternal Peace as Final Goal.

is a 18 feet Dia All White Pagoda with may be a table or, but be sure
to having above head level based on the usual use of the room.





 668, 5A main Road, 8th Cross, HAL III Stage,

Prabuddha Bharat Puniya Bhumi Bengaluru

Magadhi Karnataka State


Dr B.R.Ambedkar thundered “Main Bharat Baudhmay karunga.” (I will make India Buddhist)

All Aboriginal  Awakened Societies Thunder ” Hum Prapanch Prabuddha Bharatmay karunge.” (We will make world Prabuddha Prapanch

Training on
Kushinara Land of Lord Buddha attained

donation of latest miniature 3D 360 degree cameras to capture places in
360 degree circular vision like circarama and  3D 360 deg projector to
be used in the Meditation as practiced in Lumbini, Buddha Gaya,
Saranath, Kushinara and also Bethlehem, Mecca Madhina and all places
practicing Kindness and compssion including for the physically disabled
18ft Dia circular pagoda for raising funds to help monks, needy poor
and physically disabled people and swimmers.

Buddha died at the age of 80 by the banks of a river at Kusinari in
Prabuddha Bharat. Lying on his side with his head propped up by his hand
and a serene expression, the Buddha passed into Nibbana. This moment is
captured in the image of the Reclining Buddha which can be seen in many
statues throughout Thailand, most famously at Wat Po in Bangkok.
Nibbana is a blissful state with no suffering and no reincarnation



Smile your way to Nibbana
I was just sitting out on the lawn on this beautiful sunny day in the Ozarks and it became quite clear that to just sit in a state of contentment with just an inner smile, noticing and staying with this growing state of happiness, the mind gradually relaxes. The movements grow less and less, then finally the world ends….. And Nibbana arises.
When you just sit and let yourself be happy in the present, and notice and release any thoughts bringing you out of the present, then that is meditation.
When people have difficulty and try too hard to do the practice and try to control the hindrances and everything else we ask them to just Smile for 30 minutes and feel the smile. That’s all - do nothing but peacefully feel a smile. (Outside in the sun is a nice place to do this) Don’t even 6R, as that is probably not being done right. Just smile and relax and stay with this happy feeling. Let it percolate on its own and get deeper. Feel loving kindness for yourself and sit in that feeling.
You notice how you might have a positive feeling, but then a thought comes in and it might be something that we find more interesting than sitting here. Hmmm… What is that thought? Oh, I know - it’s craving - to be somewhere else because it might be more fun and more pleasant. We have a lot of those thoughts and are swept here and then and barely have a chance to feel any calm at all. We go from restlessness and wanting to move, to sloth and torpor and just going to sleep. Then off we go thinking about a good a cold drink would be. Sensual Desire Then we get angry because we can’t DO this RIGHT: Anger Well it must because we just don’t know how! Doubt. Are we failures at this? Maybe there is a better way? And so it goes. The 5 hindrances.
You can’t just sit and observe out of the gate, so the Buddha came up with a way to slow things down first, which is a Samatha practice. Collectedness / Samadhi… Bringing up a pleasant object like lovingkindness and just staying with it. It is a happy practice- one that feels good, and the mind can stay with it easily. It is a wholesome object that brings in energy and tranquility into the mind.
It is just because our mind is so busy that we have to use this Brahmavihara practice to calm down to the point where we can have some quiet peaceful moments to really observe just what is there. You bring up loving kindness (Metta) and this then automatically turns to compassion (Karuna) and then to joy (Mudita) and then to a deep feeling of Equanimity (Upekkha). You stay with this and train the mind to be with it. As the sutta says you pervade it to all beings in all directions. (Just a ’spiritual’ friend at first).
Then the feeling of equanimity disappears. the mind becomes super quiet. Thoughts are not really there anymore - only subtle movements of mind. There can be flickers and waves, and rolling and lights. Just things to see and feel, but our attention can stay with it and observe it, because there is a deep level of tranquility now.
This now becomes the practice of Vipassana (Vi=to passana= see Insight) but still includes some Samatha (Tranquility/Calm.)
This is the second part of the practice of this Samatha-Vipassana Practice or TWIM.
When you sit with nothing going on and a thought or image comes up and you realize that when you have nothing going on it actually feels better, than desiring this or that (hindrances). These hindrances lure and beckon us but we realize the lure is a painful craving feeling for something other than what we have right now -in the present moment.
With insight into the pain of thinking and hindrances, the mind stops paying attention to thoughts and feelings and experiences deep profound happiness. It truly has come into the present by becoming dispassionate and disenchanted with the outside world which invades this new type of peace. The mind has turned away from the world, which is the awareness and desire of everything outside yourself.
This is why this Samatha and Vipassana is “Yoked Together”; one needs the other. You must develop tranquility first. Then you just watch and develop insight into how the mind moves. But you still come back to the quiet which is how Samatha is still there. Once you realize there is no reason to move you enter into peace. A true peace. The peace of stopping. Relief of not having to constantly seek. It’s finally enough.
As far as today went the world didn’t stop as the cat jumped back up in my lap and it was right back into Samsara.
​David Johnson
Blog: Path to Nibbana

Blog: Path to Nibbana
was just sitting out on the lawn on this beautiful sunny day in the
Ozarks and it became quite clear that to just sit in a state of
contentment with just an inner smile, noticing and staying.


Kushinara Land of Lord Buddha attained Nibbana
1.08K subscribers
“Land of Lord Buddha attained Nibbana ” is a Religious pilgrimage
center in the beautiful state of Uttar Pradesh, Kushinara is a place
where Lord Buddha attained Nibbana. It is famous for numerous
monasteries and stupas dating back years ago are almost in relics now.
lord buddha turned 80 he had predicted at Vaishali Bihar on the day of
magi purinma that he would die at kushinra after three months . On this
very given date Buddha arrived at kushinra in 543 bc preached his last
sermon :
“Now, O Brothers , I do remind you all component things are subject to decay , work for your salvation in the earnest “
is the one of the most sacred place for Buddhist supporter and
followers. It has quite influenced in the tourism sector since this
place is such an important figure in Buddhism.
is visited by pilgrims all throughout the year. The best time to visit
the place is from November to March when the weather is favorable. It is
perfect for exploring the temples and gardens of the place.
If you have any other query feel free to ask at -
Kushinagar “Land of Lord Buddha attained Nirvana ” is a Religious

Stupa 2020, Kushinagar (land of Buddha) | Buddha Mahaparinirvan Sthali
About Video : Parinirvana Stupa is a Buddhist temple in Kushinagar,
India …


Buddha Good Morning GIF - Buddha GoodMorning GIFs

Laughing Buddha GIF - Laughingbuddha Buddha Amitofo GIFs

Dr B.R.Ambedkar thundered “Main Bharat Baudhmay karunga.” (I will make India Buddhist)

JAI Brim GIF - JAI Brim Buddha GIFs

All Aboriginal  Awakened Societies Thunder ” Hum Prapanch Prabuddha Bharatmay karunge.” (We will make world Prabuddha Prapanch

Quote Of The Day Quotes For Life GIF - QuoteOfTheDay QuotesForLife PositiveVibes GIFs

29) Classical English,Roman


What is Nibbana from Buddha and his Dhamma

What is Nibbana

  • Once the Blessed Lord was staying at Shravasti in Anathapindika’s Arama where Sariputta was also staying.
  • The Lord addressing the Brethren said: ” Almsmen, be ye partakers
    not of the world’s goods but of my doctrine; in my compassion for you
    all I am anxious to ensure this.” 
  • Thus spoke the Lord, who thereupon rose and passed to his own cell. 
  • Sariputta remained behind and the Brethren asked him to explain what is Nibbana. 
  • Then Sariputta in reply to the Brethren said: ” Brethren, know you that greed is vile, and vile is resentment. 
  • ” To shed this greed and this resentment, there is the Middle Way
    which gives us eyes to see and makes us know, leading us on to peace,
    insight, enlightenment and Nibbana. 
  • ” What is this Middle Way ? It is naught but the Noble Eight-fold
    Path of right outlook, right aims, right speech, right action, right
    means of livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness and right
    concentration; this. Almsmen is the Middle Way. 
  • “Yes, sirs; anger is vile and malevolence is vile, envy and jealousy
    are vile, niggardliness and avarice are vile, hypocrisy and deceit and
    arrogance are vile, inflation is vile, and indolence is vile. 
  • ” For the shedding of inflation and indolence there is the Middle
    Way—giving us eyes to see, making us know, and leading us on to peace,
    insight, enlightenment. 
  • ” Nibbana which is naught but that Noble Eight-fold Path.” 
  • Thus spoke the reverend Sariputta—glad at heart, the Almsmen rejoiced at what he had said.

Nirvana and The Concept of Freedom in Buddhism

Phra Buddhasurintaramongkol

Design Pics/Chris Upton/Getty Images

Updated December 24, 2018

Nibbana in Theravada Buddhism

Theravada Buddhism describes two kinds of nirvana—or Nibbana,
as Theravadins usually use the Pali word. The first is “Nibbana with
remainders.” This is compared to the embers that remain warm after
flames have been extinguished, and it describes an enlightened living
being or arahant. The arahant is still conscious of pleasure and pain, but he or she is no longer bound to them.

The second type is Parinibbana, which is final or complete
nibbana that is “entered” at death. Now the embers are cool. The Buddha
taught that this state is neither existence—because that which can be
said to exist is limited in time and space—nor non-existence. This
seeming paradox reflects the difficulty that comes when ordinary
language attempts to describe a state of being that is indescribable. 

The word nirvana is so prevalent for English speakers that its true
meaning is often lost. The word has been adopted to mean “bliss” or
“tranquility.” Nirvana also is the name of a famous American grunge
band, as well as of many consumer products, from bottled water to
perfume. But what is it? And how does it fit into Buddhism?

The Meaning of Nibbana

In the spiritual definition, Nibbana (or nibbana in
Pali) is an ancient Sanskrit word that means something like “to
extinguish,” with the connotation of extinguishing a flame. This more
literal meaning has caused many westerners to assume that the goal of
Buddhism is to obliterate oneself. But that’s not at all what Buddhism,
or Nibbana, is about. The liberation entails extinguishing the condition
of samsara, the suffering of dukkha;
Samsara is usually defined as the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth,
although in Buddhism this is not the same as the rebirth of discreet
souls, as it is in Hinduism, but rather a rebirth of karmic
tendencies. Nibbana is also said to be liberation from this cycle and dukkha, the stress/pain/dissatisfaction of life.

In his first sermon after his awakenment with awareness, the Buddha preached the Four Noble Truths.
Very basically, the Truths explain why life stresses and disappoints
us. The Buddha also gave us the remedy and the path to liberation, which
is the Eightfold Path.

Buddhism, then, is not so much a belief system as it is a practice that enables us to stop struggling.

Nibbana Is Not a Place

So, once we’re liberated, what happens next? The various schools of
Buddhism understand nirvana in different ways, but they generally agree
that nirvana is not a place. It is more like a state of existence.
However, the Buddha also said that anything we might say or imagine
about nirvana would be wrong because it is utterly different from our
ordinary existence. Nirvana is beyond space, time, and definition, and
so language is by definition inadequate to discuss it. It can only be

Many scriptures and commentaries speak of entering nirvana, but
(strictly speaking), nirvana cannot be entered in the same way we enter a
room or the way we might imagine entering heaven. The Theravadin
scholar Thanissaro Bhikkhu said, 

“… neither samsara nor nirvana is a place. Samsara is a process of creating places, even whole worlds, (this is called becoming) and then wandering through them (this is called birth). Nirvana is the end of this process.”

Of course, many generations of Buddhist have imagined nirvana
to be a place, because the limitations of language give us no other way
to talk about this state of being. There is also an old folk belief that
one must be reborn as a male to enter nirvana. The historical Buddha
never said any such thing, but the folk belief came to be reflected in
some of the Mahayana suttas. This notion was very emphatically rejected in the Vimalakirti Sutta, however, in which it is made clear that both women and laypeople can become enlightened and experience nirvana. 

Nibbana in Mahayana Buddhism

One of the distinguishing characteristics of Mahayana Buddhism is the bodhisattva vow.
Mahayana Buddhists are dedicated to the ultimate enlightenment of all
beings, and thus choose to remain in the world in assistance to others
rather than move on to individual enlightenment. In at least some schools of Mahayana,
because everything inter-exists, “individual” nirvana is not even
considered. These schools of Buddhism are very much about living in this
world, not leaving it. 

Some schools of Mahayana Buddhism also include teachings that samsara
and Nibbana are not separate. A being who has realized or perceived the emptiness
of phenomena will realize that nirvana and samsara are not opposites,
but instead completely pervade each other. Since our inherent truth is
Buddha Nature, both Nibbana and samsara are natural manifestations of
our mind’s inherent empty clarity, and nirvana can be seen as the
purified, true nature of samsara. For more on this point, see also ” The Heart Sutta” and “The Two Truths.”

The word Vinaya
is derived from a  verb that can mean to lead, take away, train, tame,
or guide, or alternately to educate or teach. It is often translated as
‘discipline’, with Dhamma-vinaya,
‘doctrine and discipline’, used by the Buddha to refer to his complete
teachings, suggesting its integral role in Buddhist practice.

The Buddha called his teaching the “Dhamma-Vinaya”, emphasizing
both the philosophical teachings of Buddhism as well as the training in
virtue that embodies that philosophy. Shortly before his passing, the
Buddha clarified to his disciples through Ānanda:

Now, Ānanda, if it occurs to any of you—”The teaching has lost its
arbitrator; we are without a Teacher”—do not view it in that way.
Whatever Dhamma and Vinaya I have pointed out and formulated for you,
that will be your Teacher when I am gone.


Jai Shree Ram Peace GIF - JaiShreeRam Peace Dancing GIFs


Murderer of democratic institutions (Modi)vaad after gobbling the master Key by tampering the fraud EVMs.VVPATS.

Joining the
controversy regarding the reliablity of Electronic Voting Machines
(EVMs) which have been questioned by political parties, the RSS today
asked the Election Commission (EC) to revert back to tried and tested
paper ballots and subject EVMs to public scrutiny whether these
gadgets are tamper proof. In an editorial titled ‘Can we trust our
EVMs?’, The Organiser, the RSS mouthpiece, noted it was a fact that
till date an absolutely tamper-proof machine had not been invented and
credibility of any system depends on ‘transparency, verifiability and
trustworthiness’ than on blind and atavistic faith in its
infallibility. The issue is not a ‘private affair’ and it involves
the future of India. Even if the EVMs were genuine, there was no
reason for the EC to be touchy about it, the paper commented. The
Government and the EC can’t impose EVMs as a fait accompli on Indian
democracy as the only option before the voter.

There were flaws like booth capturing, rigging, bogus voting, tampering
and ballot paper snatching in the ballot paper system of polling
leading the country to switch over to the EVMs and all these problems
were relevant in EVMs too. Rigging was possible even at the counting
stage. What made the ballot papers voter-friendly was that all
aberrations were taking place before the public eye and hence open for
corrections whereas the manipulations in the EVMs is entirely in the
hands of powers that be and the political appointees manning the
system, the paper commented. The EVM has only one advantage —
’speed’ but that advantage has been undermined by the staggered polls
at times spread over three to four months. ‘’This has already killed
the fun of the election process,’’ the paper noted. Of the dozen
General Elections held in the country, only two were through the EVMs
and instead of rationally addressing the doubts aired by reputed
institutions and experts the Government has resorted to silence its
critics by ‘intimidation and arrests on false charges’, the paper
observed, recalling the arrest of Hyederabad-based technocrat Hari
Prasad by the Mumbai Police. Prasad’s research has proved that the
EVMs were ‘vulnerable to fraud’. The authorities want to send a
message that anybody who challenges the EC runs the risk of
persecution and harassment, the RSS observed. Most countries
around the world looked at the EVMs with suspicion and countries like
the Netherlands, Italy, Germany and Ireland had all reverted back to
paper ballots shunning EVMs because they were ‘easy to falsify, risked
eavesdropping and lacked transparency’. Democracy is too precious
to be handed over to whims or an opaque establishment and network of
unsafe gizmos. ‘’For the health of Indian democracy it is better to
return to tried and tested methods or else elections in future canturn
out to be a farce,’’ the editorial said.

— (UNI) — 28DI28.xml

“We should be proud of our medical science, how advanced our country
was at one time. In the Mahabharat, Karna is not born from his mother’s
womb, this means there was genetic science at that time. That’s how
Karna could be born without a mother’s womb.

We worship Ganeshji, there must have been a plastic surgeon in that era
who put an elephant’s head on a human body, plastic surgery must have
started then. ( What about Boy’s Head on Elephant body) Modi said at the
inaugural function of Sir Harkisondas Nurrotamdas Reliance Foundation
Hospital in south Mumbai on October 25, in the presence of top doctors,
scientists, industrialists, journalists, sports icons and Bollywood
stars.And ironically at a time when Pope Francis has said that the
theories of evolution and the Big Bang are real, and God did not wave a
magic wand to create the universe. There must be many such fields where
our ancestors have excelled.”

—From Modi address at the rededication of Sir H.N. Reliance Foundation
and Research Centre, Mumbai.Sanyukta Biswas, 22Law student Gandhinagar

Modi seems to be confusing mythology with scientific facts. The
citation he made would not hold any ground for the simple reason that a
head is not an organ of the body which can be transplanted. It is a
certain part of the body which comprises a link to other vital
functional systems of the body. Therefore, Ganesha’s head
transplantation is nothing but a myth. The fact that he cited plastic
surgery as the solution implies that he does not understand that the
right phrase to be used in this context.

Manisha Bhattacharya 52Ceramic artist Akash S

In Mumbai, you have Modi coupling mythology with medical science; in
Haryana, his remotely controlling Rowdy Swayam Sevaks (RSS) chitpavan
brahmin foreigners kicked out from Bene Israel, Tibet, Africa etc., pass
a diktat that women should be stopped from using mobiles…apparently
it leads to rapes!

Madhavi Potukuchi 22Journalism student Pune

has yet again tried to give a hindutva spin to the whole situation by
saying that modern medicine existed in the times of the Mahabharata.
This seems like nothing but propaganda. In such a diverse country, he
must support all religions but we see that he has yet again taken an
extremely hindutvastan stance by mentioning hindutva mythological
instances only. The contents of his speech, though, weren’t a surprise
since it isn’t the first of its kind.

Sunita J. 47Homemaker Chennai

disagree with what Modi said in his speech because the examples he
cited are neither authentic nor verifiable. The mahabharata and ramayana
is a fictional epic authored by Valmiki and Vyasa who were awakened
aboriginal SC/STs and we don’t know if the characters were real or even
existed. Hence, there is no way to justify that Indians were ahead in
the field of medicine and science, as Modi has claimed. Secondly, by
focusing on hindutvasatan mythology, he has ignored other religions and
legends in our country. He is identifying our Prabuddha Bharat as being a

Simran Kaur 22Research analyst Bangalore

speech sounded quite meaningless, especially the parts about Lord
Ganesha and Karna. The prime minister must give more importance to the
current research happening in the field of medicine than refer to
fictional stories. It is quite surprising that Mr Modi has on such a
public forum held up mythology and compared it to how advanced science
has become in the 21st century. The common man wants to know about
modern medicine or how the Reliance project can help him. Modi needs to
stop talking about has-beens, something he seems to be doing a lot

disagree with what Modi said in his speech because the examples he
cited are neither authentic nor verifiable. The mahabharata and ramayana
is a fictional epic authored by Valmiki and Vyasa who were awakened
aboriginal SC/STs and we don’t know if the characters were real or even
existed. Hence, there is no way to justify that Indians were ahead in
the field of medicine and science, as Modi has claimed. Secondly, by
focusing on hindutvasatan mythology, he has ignored other religions and
legends in our country. He is identifying our Prabuddha Bharat as being a

Raghav Mehrotra 20History student Delhi

Prabuddha Bharatians, our identity derives a lot from this mythology
but we need to see the texts in their true meaning and not in a literal
sense. Each anecdote has an important lesson behind it. Taking these
facts in a literal sense is not the true meaning of these texts.

Khushboo Bengani 22English literature student Delhi

all religious beliefs can be given a scientific meaning. It’s
preposterous to establish India’s credibility in science citing these
instances. Referring to Ganesha’s elephant head as evidence of plastic
surgery and Karna’s birth as proof of genetic science seems too
far-fetched. Though Karna’s birth and Ganesha’s elephant head do arouse a
feeling of awe, they go against reason when you think of it rationally.

origin Like all gods in the hindutva pantheon, ganesh has a
mythological origin. He is the son of shiva and his consort parvati,
both of human form and yet he bears the head of an elephant. The reason
for this closely follows his birth or more appropriately his creation.
He was not born to parvati as mere mortal are. It is said that she was
lonely. shiva was away as was often the case. In her loneliness it
appears she was given to neglect personal hygiene, or maybe it was an
act of pure desperation and determination. She decided to create a child
and did this by forming him, Ganesh, through moulding a substantial
accumulation of her body dirt. And so Ganesh was born and parvati was
happy and occupied.The story goes that one day, while parvati was having
a bath, shiva came home. When he attempted to enter the house though,
he was met with resistance in the form of the boy ganesh. Neither of
them knew they were related. Shiva got angry at not being allowed in
and dealt with the situation by chopping off ganesh’s head. It was at
this moment that parvati came out to find what shiva had done. She was
inconsolable but managed to tell shiva that the boy whose head he had
cut off was in fact his son. Angry and upset at the hash he had made of
the situation, shiva decided to fix it. He went out and hunted the first
animal he saw, the elephant, and brought back its head to replace the
boy’s. That is how ganesh has an elephant head. He is immersed in water
as parvati decided to create a child and did this by forming him,
Ganesh, through moulding a substantial accumulation of her body dirt.

permission for Ganesh fete at public placesStern action would be taken
if any organisation, group or individual arrange pandals violating the
rules, he said. Vinayaka Chaviti falls on August 22 this year. Members
of the Ganesh Utsava Committee, Ganesh Navarathri Utsava Committee,
Vinayaka Mandapa Committee and other organisations, area committees,
colonies associations, traders and individuals have been celebrating the
festival at public places in a grand manner every year by taking
permission from the police.“We request the devotees to celebrate
Vinayaka Chaviti at homes in strict adherence to the COVID norms. The
police will not issue permissions for putting up pandals, performing
pujas at public places and for immersion of the idols,”


Mohan Mohan Bhagwat said he has lost faith in religion RSS chief Mohan
Bhagwat said that he has lost faith in religion because of the
coronavirus outbreak. The title of the purported report makes this claim
in Hindi — “कोरोना ने तोड़ी मेरी धर्म में आस्था – मोहन भागवत” — and says
that the number coronavirus cases in our country has crossed
Coronavirus Cases 22,863,816.The clipping pins the spread of the
infection on the closure of temples and opening of schools and colleges
in their stead. Apart from the title, the clipping does not carry Mohan
Bhagwat’s name in other sections.Twitter user @DR_Ambedkarji shared the
clipping and wrote (archive), “This is the greatest news of today. It
feels good to see RSS and Mohan Bhagwat’s fear. This fear should be
there and soon, people should rid themselves of religion. Our children’s
futures need to be better. The world has blind faith and is capable of
doing anything. They have freedom.”[Translated from: आज का सबसे अच्छा
समाचार मुझे यह लगा R.s.s. और मोहन भागवत का यह डर देखकर अच्छा लगा यह डर
होना चाहिए और जल्दी ही लोगों को धर्म से छुटकारा पा लेना चाहिए जिन्हें
अपने बच्चों को भविष्य सुधारना है बाकी तो दुनिया है अंधभक्त है कुछ भी कर
सकते हैं स्वतंत्र है.]Dharmendra Singh BSP
ask a cross-section of people about the prime minister’s claims, which
seem to be straight out of one of Prof Dinanath Batra’s history books

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LESSON 3420 Thu 20 Aug 2020 Discovery of Awakened One with Awareness Universe (DAOAU) For The Welfare, Happiness, Peace of All Sentient and Non-Sentient Beings and for them to Attain Eternal Peace as Final Goal. KUSHINARA NIBBANA BHUMI PAGODA-It is a 18 feet Dia All White Pagoda with may be a table or, but be sure to having above head level based on the usual use of the room. in 116 CLASSICAL LANGUAGES Through http://sarvajan.ambedkar.org At WHITE HOME 668, 5A main Road, 8th Cross, HAL III Stage, Prabuddha Bharat Puniya Bhumi Bengaluru Magadhi Karnataka State PRABUDDHA BHARAT Dr B.R.Ambedkar thundered “Main Bharat Baudhmay karunga.” (I will make India Buddhist) All Aboriginal Awakened Societies Thunder ” Hum Prapanch Prabuddha Bharatmay karunge.” (We will make world Prabuddha Prapanch Training on Nibbana (Buddhism)
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 LESSON 3420 Thu 20 Aug 2020

Discovery of  Awakened One with Awareness Universe (DAOAU) 


The Welfare, Happiness, Peace of All Sentient and Non-Sentient Beings and for them to Attain Eternal Peace as Final Goal.

is a 18 feet Dia All White Pagoda with may be a table or, but be sure
to having above head level based on the usual use of the room.





 668, 5A main Road, 8th Cross, HAL III Stage,

Prabuddha Bharat Puniya Bhumi Bengaluru

Magadhi Karnataka State


Dr B.R.Ambedkar thundered “Main Bharat Baudhmay karunga.” (I will make India Buddhist)

All Aboriginal  Awakened Societies Thunder ” Hum Prapanch Prabuddha Bharatmay karunge.” (We will make world Prabuddha Prapanch

Training on
Nibbana (Buddhism)

donation of latest miniature 3D 360 degree cameras to capture places in
360 degree circular vision like circarama and  3D 360 deg projector to
be used in the Meditation as practiced in Lumbini, Buddha Gaya,
Saranath, Kushinara and also Bethlehem, Mecca Madhina and all places
practicing Kindness and comapssion including for the physically disabled
18ft Dia circular pagoda for raising funds to help monks, needy poor
and physically disabled people and swimmers.

Buddha died at the age of 80 by the banks of a river at Kusinari in
Prabuddha Bharat. Lying on his side with his head propped up by his hand
and a serene expression, the Buddha passed into Nibbana. This moment is
captured in the image of the Reclining Buddha which can be seen in many
statues throughout Thailand, most famously at Wat Po in Bangkok.
Nibbana is a blissful state with no suffering and no reincarnation


Buddha Good Morning GIF - Buddha GoodMorning GIFs
Laughing Buddha GIF - Laughingbuddha Buddha Amitofo GIFs

Dr B.R.Ambedkar thundered “Main Bharat Baudhmay karunga.” (I will make India Buddhist)

All Aboriginal  Awakened Societies Thunder ” Hum Prapanch Prabuddha Bharatmay karunge.” (We will make world Prabuddha Prapanch

Quote Of The Day Quotes For Life GIF - QuoteOfTheDay QuotesForLife PositiveVibes GIFs

29) Classical English,Roman

Nibbana (Buddhism)

(Buddhism) (Nibbāna) is the goal of the Buddhist path.The literal
meaning of the term is “blowing out” or “quenching”. Nibbana is Eternal
Bliss the ultimate spiritual goal in Buddhism and marks the
soteriological release from rebirths in saṃsāra. Nibbana is part of the
Third Truth on “cessation of dukkha” in the Four Noble Truths, and the
summum bonum destination of the Noble Eightfold Path.

In the Buddhist
tradition, Nibbana has commonly been interpreted as the extinction of
the “three fires”, or “three poisons”, greed (raga), aversion (dvesha) and ignorance (moha). When these fires are extinguished, release from the cycle of rebirth (saṃsāra) is attained.

Nibbana has also been claimed by some scholars to be identical with anatta (non-self) and sunyata
(emptiness) states though this is hotly contested by other scholars and
practicing monks. In time, with the development of the Buddhist
doctrine, other interpretations were given, such as the absence of the
weaving (vana) of activity of the mind, the elimination of desire, and escape from the woods, cq. the five skandhas or aggregates.

Buddhist scholastic tradition identifies two types of nirvana: sopadhishesa-nirvana (Nibbana with a remainder), and parinibbana or anupadhishesa-nirvana
(Nibbana without remainder, or final Nibbana). The founder of Buddhism,
the Buddha, is believed to have reached both these states.

Nibbana, or the liberation from cycles of rebirth, is the highest aim of the Theravada tradition. In the Mahayana tradition, the highest goal is Buddhahood, in which there is no abiding in Nibbana. Buddha helps liberate beings from saṃsāra
by teaching the Buddhist path. There is no rebirth for Buddha or people
who attain Nibbana. But his teachings remain in the world for a certain
time as a guidance to attain Nibbana.

Aniconic carving representing the final nirvana of a Buddha at Sanchi.

Translations of
English blowing out,
Sanskrit nirvāṇa (निर्वाण)
Pali nibbāna (निब्बान)
Bengali নির্বাণ
Burmese နိဗ္ဗာန်
(IPA: [neɪʔbàɰ̃])
Chinese 涅槃
Japanese 涅槃
(rōmaji: nehan)
Khmer និព្វាន
(UNGEGN: nippean)
Korean 열반
(RR: yeolban)
Mon နဳဗာန်
Mongolian γasalang-aca nögcigsen
Shan ၼိၵ်ႈပၢၼ်ႇ
Sinhala නිවන
Tibetan མྱ་ངན་ལས་འདས་པ།
(mya ngan las ‘das pa)
Thai นิพพาน
Vietnamese Niết bàn
Glossary of Buddhism


Khmer traditional mural painting depicts Gautama Buddha entering parinirvana, Dharma assembly pavilion, Wat Botum, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.


In the Theravada-tradition, nibbāna is regarded as an uncompounded or unconditioned (asankhata) dhamma (phenomenon, event) which is “transmundane”,[108][note 11] and which is beyond our normal dualistic conceptions. In Theravada Abhidhamma texts like the Vibhanga, nibbana or the asankhata-dhatu (unconditioned element) is defined thus:

‘What is the unconditioned element (asankhata dhatu)? It is the cessation of passion, the cessation of hatred and the cessation of delusion.

Furthermore, for the Theravada, nirvana is uniquely the only asankhata dhamma
(unconditioned phenomenon) and unlike other schools, they do not
recognize different unconditioned phenomena or different types of
nirvana (such as the apratistha or non-abiding nirvana of Mahayana).As noted by Thiện Châu, the Theravadins and the Pudgalavadins “remained
strictly faithful to the letter of the sutras” and thus held that
nirvana is the only unconditioned dhamma, while other schools also posited various asankhata dhammas (such as the Sarvastivadin view that space or akasa was unconditioned).


The Four planes of liberation

(according to the Sutta Piaka[)



until suffering’s end


1. identity view (Anatman)
2. doubt in Buddha
3. ascetic or ritual rules


up to seven rebirths in
human or heavenly realms


once more as
a human


4. sensual desire
5. ill will

once more in
a heavenly realm
(Pure Abodes)


6. material-rebirth desire
7. immaterial-rebirth desire
8. conceit
9. restlessness
10. ignorance


no rebirth

Source: Ñāṇamoli & Bodhi (2001), Middle-Length Discourses, pp. 41-43.

Main article: Four stages of awakenment with Awareness

The Theravada tradition identifies four progressive stages.The first three lead to favorable rebirths in more pleasant realms of
existence, while the last culminates in nirvana as an Arahat who is a
fully awakened person. The first three are reborn because they still
have some of the fetters, while arhat has abandoned all ten fetters and,
upon death will never be reborn in any realm or world, having wholly
escaped saṃsāra.

At the start, a monk’s mind treats nirvana as an object (nibbanadhatu). This is followed by realizing the insight of three universal lakshana (marks): impermanence (anicca), suffering (dukkha) and nonself (anatman). Thereafter the monastic practice aims at eliminating the ten fetters that lead to rebirth.

According to Thanissaro Bhikkhu, individuals up to the level of non-returning may experience nibbāna as an object of consciousness.Certain contemplations with nibbāna as an object of samādhi lead, if developed, to the level of non-returning. At that point of contemplation, which is reached through a progression of insight, if the meditator realizes that even that state is constructed and therefore impermanent, the fetters are destroyed, arahantship is attained, and nibbāna is realized.


The Theravada exegete Buddhaghosa says, in his Visuddhimagga:

is called nibbana (extinction) because it has gone away from
(nikkhanta), has escaped from (nissata), is dissociated from, craving,
which has acquired in common usage the name ‘fastening (vana)’ because,
by ensuring successive becoming, craving serves as a joining together, a
binding together, a lacing together, of the four kinds of generation,
five destinies, seven stations of consciousness and nine abodes of

According to Buddhaghosa, nibbāna is achieved after a long process of committed application to the path of purification (Pali: Vissudhimagga). The Buddha explained that the disciplined way of life he recommended to his students (dhamma-vinaya) is a gradual training
extending often over a number of years. To be committed to this path
already requires that a seed of wisdom is present in the individual.
This wisdom becomes manifest in the experience of awakening (bodhi). Attaining nibbāna, in either the current or some future birth, depends on effort, and is not pre-determined.

In the Visuddhimagga, chapter I.v.6, Buddhaghosa identifies various options within the Pali canon for pursuing a path to nirvana.[note 14][note 15]
According to Gombrich, this proliferation of possible paths to
liberation reflects later doctrinal developments, and a growing emphasis
on insight as the main liberative means, instead of the practice of dhyana.

The mind of the Arahant is nibbāna

related idea, which finds no explicit support in the Pali Canon without
interpretation, and is the product of contemporary Theravada practice
tradition, despite its absence in the Theravada commentaries and Abhidhamma, is that the mind of the arahant is itself nibbāna.

Modern Theravada views

K.N. Jayatilleke, a modern Sri Lankan
Buddhist philosopher, holds that nirvana must be understood by a
careful study of the Pali texts. Jayatilleke argues that the Pali works
show that nirvana means ‘extinction’ as well as ‘the highest positive
experience of happiness’.
Jayatilleke writes that despite the definition of nirvana as
‘extinction’, this does not mean that it is a kind of annihilation or a
state of dormant nonentity, for this contradicts the statements of the
Buddha that reject this interpretation. Jayatilleke holds that the early
texts clearly proclaim that nothing can be said about the state of the
Buddha after paranibbana
(the end of his psycho-physical personality) because “we do not have
the concepts or words to describe adequately the state of the
emancipated person.” 
This transcendent reality which our normal minds cannot grasp is not
located in time or space, it is not causally conditioned, and beyond
existence and non-existence. Because trying to explain nibbana
by means of logic is impossible, the only thing to be done is to
explain how to reach it, instead of dwelling on what it “is”. Explaining
what happens to the Buddha after nibbana is thus said to be an unanswerable.

A similarly apophatic position is also defended by Walpola Rahula,
who states that the question of what nirvana is “can never be answered
completely and satisfactorily in words, because human language is too
poor to express the real nature of the Absolute Truth or Ultimate
Reality which is Nirvana.”
Rahula affirms that nibbana is most often described in negative terms
because there is less danger in grasping at these terms, such as “the
cessation of continuity and becoming (bhavanirodha)”, “the
abandoning and destruction of desire and craving for these five
aggregates of attachment”, and “the extinction of “thirst” (tanhakkhayo).”
Rahula also affirms however that nibbana is not a negative or an
annihilation, because there is no self to be annihilated and because ‘a
negative word does not necessarily indicate a negative state’. Rahula
also notes that more positive terms are used to describe nibbana such as
“freedom” (mutti) and “truth” (sacca). Rahula also agrees that nirvana is unconditioned.

The American Theravada monk Bhikkhu Bodhi
has defended the traditional Theravada view which sees nirvana as “a
reality transcendent to the entire world of mundane experience, a
reality transcendent to all the realms of phenomenal existence.”

The Sri Lankan philosopher David Kalupahana has taken a different position, he argues that the Buddha’s “main philosophical insight” is the principle of causality (dependent origination) and that this “is operative in all spheres, including the highest state of spiritual development, namely, nirvana.”
According to Kalupahana “later scholars attempted to distinguish two
spheres, one in which causation prevailed and the other which is
uncaused. This latter view was, no doubt, the result of a confusion in
the meanings of the two terms, sankhata (’compounded’) and paticcasamuppanna (’causally conditioned’).” Thus, even though nibbana is termed “asankhata” (un-compounded, not-put together) there is no statement in the early texts which say that nirvana is not dependently originated or is uncaused (the term would be appaticcasamuppana). He thus argues that “nirvana is a state where there is ‘natural or causal happening’ (paticcasamuppada), but not ‘organized,’ or ‘planned’ conditioning (sankha-rana)”, as well as “a state of perfect mental health (aroga), of perfect happiness (parama sukha), calmness or coolness (sitibhuta), and stability (aneñja), etc. attained in this life, or while one is alive.”

Mahasi Sayadaw, one of the most influential 20th century Theravada vipassana teachers, states in his “On the nature of Nibbana” that “nibbana is perfect peace (santi)”
and “the complete annihilation of the three cycles of defilement,
action, and result of action, which all go to create mind and matter,
volitional activities, etc.” He further states that for arahants “no new life is formed after his decease-consciousness.”
Mahasi Sayadaw further states that nibbana is the cessation of the five
aggregates which is like “a flame being extinguished”. However this
doesn’t mean that “an arahant as an individual has disappeared” because
there is no such thing as an “individual” in an ultimate sense, even
though we use this term conventionally. Ultimate however, “there is only
a succession of mental and physical phenomena arising and dissolving.”
For this reason, Mahasi Sayadaw holds that although for an arahant
“cessation means the extinction of the successive rise and fall of the
aggregates” this is not the view of annihilation (uccheda-diṭṭhi) since there is ultimately no individual to be annihilated. Mahasi further notes that “feeling [vedana] ceases with the parinibbāna of the Arahant” and also that “the cessation of senses is nibbāna” (citing the Pañcattaya Sutta). Mahasi also affirms that even though nibbana is the “cessation of mind,
matter, and mental formations” and even the cessation of “formless
consciousness”, it is not nothing, but it is an “absolute reality” and
he also affirms that “the peace of nibbana is real.”

Unorthodox interpretations, nibbana as citta, viññana or atta

In Thai Theravada,
as well as among some modern Theravada scholars, there are alternative
interpretations which differ from the traditional orthodox Theravada
view. These interpretations see nibbana as equivalent in some way with
either a special kind of mind (pabhassara citta) or a special consciousness called anidassana viññāṇa,
“non-manifest” consciousness which is said to be ‘luminous’. In one
interpretation, the “luminous consciousness” is identical with
nibbana.Others disagree, finding it to be not nibbana itself, but
instead to be a kind of consciousness accessible only to arahants.

Some teachers of the Thai forest tradition, such as Ajahn Maha Bua taught an idea called “original mind” which when perfected is said to exist as a separate reality from the world and the aggregates. According to Maha Bua, the indestructible mind or citta is characterized by awareness or knowing, which is intrinsically bright (pabhassaram)
and radiant, and though it is tangled or “darkened” in samsara, it is
not destroyed. This mind is unconditioned, deathless and an independent
reality. According to Bua, this mind is impure, but when it is purified
of the defilements, it remains abiding in its own foundation. Maha Bua
also publicly argued (in a newspaper in 1972) that one could meet with
and discuss the teachings with arahants and Buddhas of the past (and
that Ajahn Mun had done so) therefore positing that nibbana is a kind of higher existence.[160] Prayudh Payutto,
a modern scholar-monk who is widely seen as the most influential
authority on Buddhist doctrine in Thailand, has played a prominent role
in arguing against the views of Maha Bua, strictly basing his views on
the Pali canon to refute such notions.

Ajahns Pasanno and Amaro, contemporary western monastics in the Thai forest tradition, note that these ideas are rooted in a passage in the Anguttara Nikaya (1.61-62) which mentions a certain “pabhassara citta“. Citing another passage from the canon which mentions a “consciousness that is signless, boundless, all-luminous” (called anidassana viññāṇa) they state that this “must mean a knowing of a primordial, transcendent nature.”

A related view of nibbana has been defended by the American Thai forest monk Thanissaro Bhikkhu. According to Thanissaro, “non-manifestive consciousness” (anidassana viññāṇa)
differs from the kinds of consciousness associated to the six sense
media, which have a “surface” that they fall upon and arise in response
to. In a liberated individual, this is directly experienced,
in a way that is free from any dependence on conditions at all. In
Thanissaro’s view, the luminous, unsupported consciousness
associated with nibbana is directly known by noble ones without the
mediation of the mental consciousness factor in dependent co-arising,
and is the transcending of all objects of mental consciousness. The British academic Peter Harvey has defended a similar view of nibbana as anidassana viññāṇa.

According to Paul Williams, there is also a trend in modern Thai Theravada that argues that “nirvana is indeed the true Self (Atman; Pali: atta)”.This dispute began when the 12th Supreme Patriarch of Thailand published a book of essays in 1939 arguing that while the conditioned world is anatta, nibbana is atta. According to Williams, this interpretation echoes the Mahayana tathāgatagarbha sutras. This position was criticized by Buddhadhasa Bhikkhu, who argued that the not-self (anatta) perspective is what makes Buddhism unique. Fifty years after this dispute, the Dhammakaya Movement also began to teach that nibbana is not anatta, but the “true self” or dhammakaya. According to Williams, this dhammakaya
(dharma body) is “a luminous, radiant and clear Buddha figure free of
all defilements and situated within the body of the meditator.” This
view has been strongly criticized as “insulting the Buddha’s teaching”
and “showing disrespect to the Pali canon” by Prayudh Payutto (In his The Dhammakaya case) and this has led to fervent debates in Thai Buddhist circles.

Another western monastic in the thai forest tradition, Ajahn Brahmāli, has recently written against all of these views, drawing on a careful study of the Nikāyas.
Brahmāli concludes that the “most reasonable interpretation” of final
nibbāna is “no more than the cessation of the five khandhas.”[90] Brahmāli also notes that there is a kind of samādhi that is attainable only by the awakened and is based on their knowledge of nibbana (but is not nibbana itself), this meditation is what is being referred to by terms such as non-manifest consciousness (anidassana viññāṇa) and unestablished consciousness (appatiṭṭhita viññāṇa).

Bhante Sujato has written extensively to refute this idea as well.


The term Nibbana
describes a state of freedom from suffering and rebirth, but different
Buddhist traditions have interpreted the concept in different ways. The
origin is probably pre-Buddhist, and its etymology may not be conclusive
for its meaning.
The term was a more or less central concept among the Jains, the
Ajivikas, the Buddhists, and certain Hindu traditions, and it may have
been imported into Buddhism with much of its semantic range from other sramanic movements.

Nibbana has a wide range of meanings, although the literal meaning is “blowing out” or “quenching”.
It refers both to the act and the effect of blowing (at something) to
put it out, but also the process and outcome of burning out, becoming

The term nirvana in the soteriological sense of “blown out, extinguished” state of liberation does not appear in the Vedas nor in the pre-Buddhist Upanishads. According to Collins, “the Buddhists seem to have been the first to call it nirvana.”
However, the ideas of spiritual liberation using different terminology,
is found in ancient texts of non-Buddhist Indian traditions, such as in
verse 4.4.6 of the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad of Hinduism.


The prevalent interpretation of nirvana as “extinction” is based on the etymology of nir√vā to “blow out”. Nib is a negative, while ba is commonly taken to refer to “to blow”.

The term Nibbana is part of an extensive metaphorical
structure that was probably established at a very early age in Buddhism.
According to Gombrich, the number of three fires alludes to the three
fires which a Brahmin had to keep alight, and thereby symbolise life in
the world, as a family-man. The meaning of this metaphor was lost in later Buddhism, and other explanations of the word nirvana were sought. Not only passion, hatred and delusion were to be extinguished, but also all cankers (asava) or defilements (khlesa). Later exegetical works developed a whole new set of folk etymological definitions of the word nirvana, using the root vana to refer to “to blow”, but re-parsing the word to roots that mean “weaving, sewing”, “desire” and “forest or woods”:

  • bâna, derived from the root word √bā which means “to blow”:
    • (to) blow (of wind); but also to emit (an odour), be wafted or diffused; Nibbana then means “to blow out”;
  • bāna, derived from the root vana or van which mean “desire”,
    • Nibbana is then explained to mean a state of “without desire, without love, without wish” and one without craving or thirst (taṇhā);
    • adding the root √bā which means “to weave or sew”; nirvana is then explained as abandoning the desire which weaves together life after life.
  • bāna, derived from the root word vana which also means “woods, forest”:
    • based on this root, vana has been metaphorically explained by Buddhist scholars as referring to the “forest of defilements”, or the five aggregates; Nibbana then means “escape from the aggregates”, or to be “free from that forest of defilements”.

The “blowing out” does not mean total annihilation, but the extinguishing of a flame. The term nirvana can also be used as a verb: “he or she Nibbāṇa-s,” or “he or she Parinibbānṇa-s” (parinibbāyati).

The term Nibbana,
“to blow out”, has also been interpreted as the extinction of the
“three fires”, or “three poisons”, namely of passion or sensuality (raga), aversion or hate (dvesha) and of delusion or ignorance (moha or avidyā). Another explanation of nirvana is the absence of the weaving (vana) of activity of the mind.

To uncover

Paul Swanson states that some contemporary Buddhism scholars have
questioned the above etymologies and whether these are consistent with
the core doctrines of Buddhism, particularly about anatman (non-self) and pratityasamutpada (causality). Matsumoto Shirō, for example, states that the original etymological root of nirvana
should not be considered as nir√vā which means “extinction”, but should
be considered to be nir√vŗ, to “uncover”. The problem with considering
it as extinction or liberation, is that it presupposes a “self” to be
extinguished or liberated. According to Matsumoto, the original meaning
of nirvana was therefore not “to extinguish” but “to uncover” the atman from that which is anatman (not atman). Other Buddhist scholars such as Takasaki Jikidō disagree, states
Swanson, and call the Matsumoto proposal as “too far and leaving nothing
that can be called Buddhist”.

Moksha, vimutti

Nibbana is used synonymously with moksha (Sanskrit), also vimoksha, or vimutti (Pali), “release, deliverance from suffering”. In the Pali-canon two kinds of vimutti are discerned:

  • Ceto-vimutti, freedom of mind; it is the qualified
    freedom from suffering, attained through the practice of concentration
    meditation (samādhi). Vetter translates this as “release of the heart”
    which means conquering desire thereby attaining a desire-less state of
  • Pañña-vimutti, freedom through understanding (prajña); it is
    the final release from suffering and the end of rebirth, attained
    through the practice of insight meditation (vipassanā).

Ceto-vimutti becomes permanent, only with the attainment of pañña-vimutti.
According to Gombrich and other scholars, these may be a later
development within the canon, reflecting a growing emphasis in earliest
Buddhism on prajña, instead of the liberating practice of dhyana;
it may also reflect a successful assimilation of non-Buddhist
meditation practices in ancient India into the Buddhist canon. According
to Anālayo, the term uttari-vimutti (highest liberation) is also widely used in the early buddhist texts to refer to liberation from the cycle of rebirth.

Interpretations of the early Buddhist concept

As a cessation event and the end of rebirth

See also: Samsara (Buddhism) and Rebirth (Buddhism)

The Bhavachakra, an illustration of the cycle of rebirth, with the three poisons at the hub of the wheel.

Most modern scholars such as Rupert Gethin, Richard Gombrich, Donald Lopez and Paul Williams hold that nirvāṇa (nibbana in Pali, also called nibbanadhatu, the property of nibbana), means the ‘blowing out’ or ‘extinguishing’ of greed, aversion, and delusion, and that this signifies the permanent cessation of samsara and rebirth.

According to Steven Collins, a synonym widely used for nirvana in early texts is “deathless” or “deathfree” (Pali: amata, sanskrit: amrta)
and refers to a condition “where there is no death, because there is
also no birth, no coming into existence, nothing made by conditioning,
and therefore no time.” He also adds that “the most common thing said
about nirvana in Buddhist texts is that it is the ending of suffering (dukkha).” Gethin notes, “this is not a ‘thing’ but an event or experience” that frees one from rebirth in samsara. According to Collins, the term is also widely used as a verb, one therefore “nirvanizes.” Gombrich argues that the metaphor used in the texts of flames going out, refers to fires which were kept by priests of Brahmanism, and symbolize life in the world. Nibbana is also called “unconditioned” (asankhata), meaning it is unlike all other conditioned phenomena.

The cycle of rebirth and suffering continues until a being
attains nirvana. One requirement for ending this cycle is to extinguish
the fires of attachment (raga), aversion (dvesha) and ignorance (moha or avidya). As Bhikkhu Bodhi states “For as long as one is entangled by craving,
one remains bound in saṃsāra, the cycle of birth and death; but when
all craving has been extirpated, one attains Nibbāna, deliverance from
the cycle of birth and death.”

According to Donald Swearer, the journey to nirvana is not a journey to a “separate reality” (contra Vedic religion or Jainism), but a move towards calm, equanimity, nonattachment and nonself. In this sense, the soteriological
view of early Buddhism is seen as a reaction to earlier Indic
metaphysical views. Thomas Kasulis notes that in the early texts,
nirvana is often described in negative terms, including “cessation” (nirodha), “the absence of craving” (trsnaksaya), “detachment,” “the absence of delusion,” and “the unconditioned” (asamskrta). He also notes that there is little discussion in the early buddhist texts
about the metaphysical nature of nirvana, since they seem to hold that
metaphysical speculation is an obstacle to the goal. Kasulis mentions
the Malunkyaputta sutta
which denies any view about the existence of the Buddha after his final
bodily death, all positions (the Buddha exists after death, does not
exist, both or neither) are rejected. Likewise, another sutta (AN II 161) has Sāriputta
saying that asking the question “is there anything else?” after the
physical death of someone who has attained nirvana is conceptualizing or
proliferating (papañca) about that which is without proliferation (appapañcaṃ) and thus a kind of distorted thinking bound up with the self.

In the early texts, the practice of the noble path and the four dhyanas
was said to lead to the extinction of the three fires, and then proceed
to the cessation of all discursive thoughts and apperceptions, then
ceasing all feelings (happiness and sadness).
According to Collins, Nibbana is associated with a meditative
attainment called the ‘Cessation of Perception/Ideation and Feeling’ (sannavedayitanirodha), also known as the ‘Attainment of Cessation’ (nirodhasamapatti)
In later Buddhism, dhyana practice was deemed sufficient only for the
extinguishing of passion and hatred, while delusion was extinguished by

As a metaphysical place or transcendent consciousness

Peter Harvey
has defended the idea that nirvana in the Pali suttas refers to a kind
of transformed and transcendent consciousness or discernment (viññana) that has “stopped” (nirodhena). According to Harvey this nirvanic consciousness is said to be “objectless”, “infinite” (anantam), “unsupported” (appatiṭṭhita) and “non-manifestive” (anidassana) as well as “beyond time and spatial location”. Rune Johansson’s The Psychology of Nirvana also argued that nirvana could be seen as a transformed state of mind (citta).

In the cosmology of Jainism, another sramana
tradition like Buddhism, liberated beings abide in an actual place
(loka) associated with nirvana. Some scholars have argued that
originally, Buddhists held a similar view.

Stanislaw Schayer, a Polish scholar, argued in the 1930s that the Nikayas preserve elements of an archaic form of Buddhism which is close to Brahmanical beliefs, and survived in the Mahayana tradition.
Contrary to popular opinion, the Theravada and Mahayana traditions may
be “divergent, but equally reliable records of a pre-canonical Buddhism
which is now lost forever.” The Mahayana tradition may have preserved a very old, “pre-Canonical”
and oral Buddhist tradition, which was largely, but not completely, left
out of the Theravada-canon. Schayer’s view saw nirvana as an immortal, deathless sphere, a transmundane reality or state. Edward Conze
had similar ideas about nirvana, citing sources which speak of an
eternal and “invisible infinite consciousness, which shines everywhere”
as point to the view that nirvana is a kind of Absolute.
A similar view was defended by M. Falk, who held that the nirvanic
element, as an “essence” or pure consciousness, is immanent within samsara. M. Falk argues that the early Buddhist view of nirvana is that it is an “abode” or “place” of prajña, which is gained by the enlightened. This nirvanic element, as an “essence” or pure consciousness, is immanent within samsara.

A similar view is also defended by C. Lindtner, who argues that in precanonical Buddhism Nirvana is:

… a place one can actually go to. It is called Nibbanadhatu, has no border-signs (animitta), is localized somewhere beyond the other six dhatus (beginning with earth and ending with vijñana) but is closest to akasa and vijñana. One cannot visualize it, it is anidarsana, but it provides one with firm ground under one’s feet, it is dhruva; once there one will not slip back, it is acyutapada. As opposed to this world, it is a pleasant place to be in, it is sukha, things work well.

According to Christian Lindtner, the original and early Buddhist concepts of nirvana were similar to those found in competing Śramaṇa (strivers/ascetics) traditions such as Jainism
and Upanishadic Vedism. It was not a psychological idea or purely
related to a being’s inner world, but a concept described in terms of
the world surrounding the being, cosmology and consciousness.
All Indian religions, over time, states Lindtner evolved these ideas,
internalizing the state but in different ways because early and later Vedanta continued with the metaphysical idea of Brahman and soul, but Buddhism did not. In this view, the canonical Buddhist views on Nirvana was a reaction against early (pre-canonical) Buddhism,
along with the assumptions of Jainism and the Upanishadic thought on
the idea of personal liberation. As a result of this reaction, Nirvana
came to be seen as a state of mind, instead of a concrete place.
Elements of this precanonical Buddhism may have survived the
canonisation, and its subsequent filtering out of ideas, and re-appeared
in Mahayana Buddhism. According to Lindtner, the existence of multiple, and contradicting ideas, is also reflected in the works of Nagarjuna,
who tried to harmonize these different ideas. According to Lindtner,
this lead him to taking a “paradoxical” stance, for instance regarding
nirvana, rejecting any positive description.

Referring to this view, Alexander Wynne holds that there is no evidence in the Sutta Pitaka
that the Buddha held this view, at best it only shows that “some of the
early Buddhists were influenced by their Brahminic peers”. Wynne concludes that the Buddha rejected the views of the Vedas and that his teachings present a radical departure from these brahminical beliefs.

Nirvana with and without remainder of fuel

Buddhist sculpture of the final Nibbana of the Buddha in greco-buddhist Gandharan style from Loriyan Tangai.

There are two stages in Nibbana, one in life, and one final nirvana upon death; the former is imprecise and general, the latter is precise and specific.
The nirvana-in-life marks the life of a monk who has attained complete
release from desire and suffering but still has a body, name and life.
The Nibbana-after-death, also called nirvana-without-substrate, is the
complete cessation of everything, including consciousness and rebirth.
This main distinction is between the extinguishing of the fires during
life, and the final “blowing out” at the moment of death:

  • Sa-upādisesa-Nibbāna (Pali; Sanskrit sopadhiśeṣa-Nibbāṇa), “nirvana with remainder”, “nirvana with residue.” Nibbana is attained during one’s life, when the fires are extinguished. There is still the “residue” of the five skandhas, and a “residue of fuel”, which however is not “burning”. Nibbana-in-this-life
    is believed to result in a transformed mind with qualities such as
    happiness, freedom of negative mental states, peacefulness and
  • An-up ādisesa-Nibbāna (Pali; Sanskrit nir-upadhiśeṣa-nirvāṇa), “Nibbana without remainder,” “Nibbana without residue”. This is the final Nibbana, or parinirvana or “blowing out” at the moment of death, when there is no fuel left.

The classic Pali sutta definitions for these states are as follows:

what, monks, is the Nibbana element with residue remaining? Here, a
monk is an arahant, one whose taints are destroyed, who has lived the
holy life, done what had to be done, laid down the burden, reached his
own goal, utterly destroyed the fetters of existence, one completely
liberated through final knowledge. However, his five sense faculties
remain unimpaired, by which he still experiences what is agreeable and
disagreeable, still feels pleasure and pain. It is the destruction of
lust, hatred, and delusion in him that is called the Nibbana element
with residue remaining.

And what, monks,
is the Nibbana element without residue remaining? Here, a monk is an
arahant … one completely liberated through final knowledge. For him,
here in this very life, all that is felt, not being delighted in, will
become cool right here. That, monks, is called the Nibbana element
without residue remaining

Gombrich explains that the five skandhas or aggregates are the bundles of firewood that fuel the three fires.
The Buddhist practitioner ought to “drop” these bundles, so that the
fires are no longer fueled and “blow out”. When this is done, the
bundles still remain as long as this life continues, but they are no
longer “on fire.” Collins notes that the first type, Nibbana in this life is also called bodhi (awakening), nirvana of the defilements or kilesa-(pari)nibbana, and arhatship while nirvana after death is also referred to as the nirvana of the Aggregates, khandha-(pari)nibbana.

What happens with one who has reached Nibbana after death is an unanswerable question. According to Walpola Rahula, the five aggregates vanish but there does not remain a mere “nothingness.” Rahula’s view, states Gombrich, is not accurate summary of the Buddhist thought, and mirrors the Upanishadic thought.

Anatta, Sunyata

Nibbana is also described in Buddhist texts as identical to anatta (anatman, non-self, lack of any self). Anatta means there is no abiding self or soul in any being or a permanent essence in any thing. This interpretation asserts that all reality is of dependent origination and a worldly construction of each human mind, therefore ultimately a delusion or ignorance. In Buddhist thought, this must be overcome, states Martin Southwold, through “the realization of anatta, which is nirvana”.

Nibbana in some Buddhist traditions is described as the realization of sunyata (emptiness or nothingness).
Madhyamika Buddhist texts call this as the middle point of all
dualities (Middle Way), where all subject-object discrimination and
polarities disappear, there is no conventional reality, and the only
ultimate reality of emptiness is all that remains.

Synonyms and metaphors

A commonly used metaphor for nirvana is that of a flame which goes out due to lack of fuel:

as an oil-lamp burns because of oil and wick, but when the oil and wick
are exhausted, and no others are supplied, it goes out through lack of
fuel (anaharo nibbayati), so the [enlightened] monk … knows that
after the break-up of his body, when further life is exhausted, all
feelings which are rejoiced in here will become cool.

Collins argues that the Buddhist view of awakening reverses the Vedic
view and its metaphors. While in Vedic religion, the fire is seen as a
metaphor for the good and for life, Buddhist thought uses the metaphor
of fire for the three poisons and for suffering. This can be seen in the Adittapariyaya Sutta commonly called “the fire sermon” as well as in other similar early Buddhist texts. The fire sermon describes the end of the “fires” with a refrain which is used throughout the early texts to describe Nibbana:

he becomes dispassionate. Through dispassion, he is fully released.
With full release, there is the knowledge, ‘Fully released.’ He discerns
that ‘Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is
nothing further for this world.

In the Dhammacakkapavattanasutta,
the third noble truth of cessation (associated with nirvana) is defined
as: “the fading away without remainder and cessation of that same
craving, giving it up, relinquishing it, letting it go, not clinging to
it.” Steven Collins lists some examples of synonyms used throughout the Pali texts for Nibbana:

end, (the place, state) without corruptions, the truth, the further
(shore), the subtle, very hard to see, without decay, firm, not liable
to dissolution, incomparable, without differentiation, peaceful,
deathless, excellent, auspicious, rest, the destruction of craving,
marvellous, without affliction, whose nature is to be free from
affliction, nibbana [presumably here in one or more creative etymology,=
e.g., non-forest], without trouble, dispassion, purity, freedom,
without attachment, the island, shelter (cave), protection, refuge,
final end, the subduing of pride (or ‘intoxication’), elimination of
thirst, destruction of attachment, cutting off of the round (of
rebirth), empty, very hard to obtain, where there is no becoming,
without misfortune, where there is nothing made, sorrowfree, without
danger, whose nature is to be without danger, profound, hard to see,
superior, unexcelled (without superior), unequalled, incomparable,
foremost, best, without strife, clean, flawless, stainless, happiness,
immeasurable, (a firm) standing point, possessing nothing.

In other Buddhist schools

Sthavira schools

The later Buddhist Abhidhamma
schools gave different meaning and interpretations of the term, moving
away from the original metaphor of the extinction of the “three fires”.
The Sarvastivada Abhidharma compendium, the Mahavibhasasastra, says of nirvana:

As it is the cessation of defilements
(klesanirodha), it is called nirvana. As it is the extinction of the
triple fires, it is called nirvana. As it is the tranquility of three characteristics,
it is called nirvana. As there is separation (viyoga) from bad odor
(durgandha), it is called nirvana. As there is separation from destinies
(gati), it is called nirvana. Vana means forest and nir means escape.
As it is the escape from the forest of the aggregates,
it is called nirvana. Vana means weaving and nir means negation. As
there is no weaving, it is called nirvana. In a way that one with thread
can easily be woven while one without that cannot be woven, in that way
one with action (kamma)
and defilements (klesa) can easily be woven into life and death while
an asaiksa who is without any action and defilements cannot be woven
into life and death. That is why it is called nirvana. Vana means new birth
and nir means negation. As there is no more new birth, it is called
nirvana. Vana means bondage and nir means separation. As it is
separation from bondage, it is called nirvana. Vana means all
discomforts of life and death and nir means passing beyond. As it passes
beyond all discomforts of life and death, it is called Nibbana.

According to Soonil Hwang, the Sarvastivada school held that there were two kinds of nirodha (extinction), extinction without knowledge (apratisamkhyanirodha) and extinction through knowledge (pratisamkhyanirodha), which is the equivalent of nirvana. In the Sarvastivada Abhidhamma, extinction through knowledge was equivalent to nirvana, and was defined by its intrinsic nature (svabhava), ‘all extinction which is disjunction (visamyoga)’. This dharma is defined by the Abhidhammakosha as “a special understanding, the penetration (pratisamkhyana) of suffering and the other noble truths.”  Soonil explains the Sarvastivada view of nirvana as “the perpetual
separation of an impure dharma from a series of aggregates through the
antidote, ‘acquisition of disjunction’ (visamyogaprapti).”
Because the Sarvastivadins held that all dharmas exist in the three
times, they saw the destruction of defilements as impossible and thus
“the elimination of a defilement is referred to as a ‘separation’ from
the series.” Soonil adds:

That is to say, the acquisition of the defilement is negated, or technically ‘disjoined’ (visamyoga),
through the power of knowledge that terminates the junction between
that defilement and the series of aggregates. By reason of this
separation, then, there arises ‘the acquisition of disjunction’ (visamyogaprapti) that serves as an antidote (pratipaksa), which henceforward prevents the junction between the defilement and this series.

The Sarvastivadins also held that nirvana was a real existent (dravyasat)
which perpetually protects a series of dhammas from defilements in the
past, present and future. Their interpretation of nirvana became an
issue of debate between them and the Sautrantika school. For the Sautrantikas, nirvana “was not a real existent but a mere designation (prajñaptisat) and was non-existence succeeding existence (pascadabhava).” It is something merely spoken of conventionally, without an intrinsic nature (svabhava). The Abhidharmakosha, explaining the Sautrantika view of Nibbana, states:

The extinction through knowledge is, when latent defilements (anusaya) and life (janman) that have already been produced are extinguished, non-arising of further such by the power of knowledge (pratisamkhya).

for the Sautrantikas, nirvana was simply the “non-arising of further
latent defilement when all latent defilements that have been produced
have already been extinguished.”
Meanwhile, the Pudgalavada
school interpreted nirvana as the single Absolute truth which
constitutes “the negation, absence, cessation of all that constitutes
the world in which we live, act and suffer”. According to Thiện Châu, for the Pudgalavadins, nirvana is seen as
totally different than the compounded realm, since it the uncompounded (asamskrta)
realm where no compounded things exist, and it is also beyond reasoning
and expression. One of the few surviving Pudgalavada texts defines
nirvana as:

truth is the definitive cessation of all activities of speech (vac) and
of all thoughts (citta). Activity is bodily action (kayakarman): speech
(vac) is that of the voice (vakkarman); thought is that of the mind
(manaskarman). If these three (actions) cease definitively, that is
absolute truth which is Nibbana.

Comparison of the major Sthavira school positions

Early Buddhist
Classical Theravāda Sarvāstivāda-Vaibhāṣika
Sautrāntika Pudgalavāda
Conception of nirvana or the asankhata The cessation of the triple fires of passion, hatred and delusion.
Existing separately (patiyekka) from mere destruction
A real existent (dravya)
Non-existence, a mere designation (prajñapti)
A real existent different

than samsara [112]

The “fuel” or “remainder” (upādi) The five aggregates The five aggregates
Life faculty (jivitendriya) and homogeneous character of the group (nikayasabhaga)
Momentum (avedha) of the series of aggregates
The five aggregates
Nirvana with a remainder of clinging The cessation of the triple fires of passion hatred and delusion
The cessation of defilements (kilesa)
The disjunction (visamyoga) from all impure (sasrava) dharmas
Non-arising of further latent defilements (anusaya)
The cessation of defilements (klesa)
Nirvana without a remainder of clinging The cessation of the five aggregates. Its ontological status is an unanswerable (avyākata).
The cessation of the five aggregates
The disintegration of the series of aggregates
Non-arising of further life (janman)
The cessation of the aggregates.

The pudgala (person)

cannot actually be said to

be existent nor non-existent and it is neither the same nor different than Nibbana.


According to Andre Bareau, the Mahāsāṃghika school held that the nirvana reached by arhats was fundamentally inferior to that of the Buddhas. Regarding the nirvana reached by the Buddha, they held that his longevity (ayu), his body (rupa, sarira) and divine power (tejas) were infinite, unlimited and supramundane (lokuttara). Therefore, they held to a kind of docetism which posited that Buddhas only appear
to be born into the world and thus when they die and enter nirvana,
this is only a fiction. In reality, the Buddha remains in the form of a
body of enjoyment (sambhogakaya) and continues to create many forms (nirmana) adapted to the different needs of beings in order to teach them through clever means (upaya).

According to Guang Xing, Mahāsāṃghikas
held that there were two aspects of a Buddha’s attainment: the true
Buddha who is omniscient and omnipotent, and the manifested forms
through which he liberates sentient beings through his skillful means. For the Mahāsāṃghikas, the historical Gautama Buddha was merely one of these transformation bodies (Skt. nirmāṇakāya).

Bareau also writes that for the Mahāsāṃghika school, only wisdom (prajña) can reach nirvana, not samadhi. Bareau notes that this might be the source of the prajñaparamita sutras.

Regarding the Ekavyāvahārika branch of the Mahāsāṃghikas, Bareau states that both samsara and nirvana were nominal designations (prajñapti) and devoid of any real substance. According to Nalinaksha Dutt, for the Ekavyāvahārika, all dharmas are conventional and thus unreal (even the absolute was held to be contingent or dependent) while for the Lokottaravada branch, worldly dharmas are unreal but supramundane dharmas like nirvana are real.

In Mahayana Buddhism

The Mahāyāna (Great Vehicle) tradition, which promotes the bodhisattva path as the highest spiritual ideal over the goal of arhatship, envisions different views of nirvāṇa than the Nikaya Buddhist schools.
Mahāyāna Buddhism is a diverse group of various Buddhist traditions and
therefore there is no single unified Mahāyāna view on nirvāṇa. However,
it is generally believed that remaining in saṃsāra in order to help other beings is a noble goal for a Mahāyānist. According to Paul Williams, there are at least two conflicting models on the bodhisattva’s attitude to Nibbāṇa.

The first model seems to be promoted in the Pañcaviṃśatisāhasrikā Prajñāpāramitā Sūtta and it states that a bodhisattva postpones their nirvāṇa until they have saved numerous sentient beings, then, after reaching Buddhahood,
a bodhisattva passes on to cessation just like an arhat (and thus
ceases to help others). In this model, their only difference to an arhat
is that they have spent aeons helping other beings and have become a
Buddha to teach the Dharma. This model seems to have been influential in the early period of Indian Buddhism. Etienne Lamotte, in his analysis of the Mahāprajñāpāramitopadeśa, notes that this text also supports the idea that after entering complete nirvāṇa (Parinibbāṇa),
a bodhisattva is “able to do nothing more for gods or for men” and
therefore he seeks to obtain “wisdom similar to but slightly inferior to
that of the Buddhas, which allows him to remain for a long time in saṃsāra in order to dedicate himself to salvific activity by many and varied skillful means.”

The second model is one which does not teach that one must
postpone Nibbāṇa. This model eventually developed a comprehensive theory
of nirvāṇa taught by the Yogacara school and later Indian Mahāyāna, which states there are at least two kinds of nirvāṇa, the nirvāṇa of an arhat and a superior type of nirvāṇa called apratiṣṭhita (non-abiding).

Apratiṣṭhita Nibbāna

The Buddha’s quest for Nibbāṇa, a relief in Vietnam

Illustrated Lotus Sūtta scroll, “Universal Gateway,” Chapter 25 of the Lotus Sutta.

See also: Bodhisattva and Buddhahood

The classic Mahāyāna Yogacara view posits that there are at least two types of nirvana, holding that what is called ‘’apratiṣṭhita-Nibbāṇa'’ (”non-abiding”, non-localized”, “non-fixed”) to be the highest nirvana, and more profound than ‘’pratiṣṭhita-Nibbāṇa'’,
the ‘localized’, lesser nirvana. According to the classic Indian
theory, this lesser, abiding nirvana is achieved by followers of the
“inferior” vehicle (hinayana)
schools which are said to only work towards their own personal
liberation. From this perspective, the hinayana path only leads to one’s
own liberation, either as sravaka (listener, hearer, or disciple) or as pratyekabuddha (solitary realizer).

According to Robert Buswell and Donald Lopez, ‘’apratiṣṭhita-nirvana'’ is the standard Mahāyāna view of the attainment of a Buddha, which enables them to freely return to samsara
in order to help sentient beings, while still being in a kind of
nirvana. The Mahāyāna path is thus said to aim at a further realization,
namely an active Buddhahood that does not dwell in a static Nibbāṇa,
but out of compassion (karuṇā) engages in enlightened activity to liberate beings for as long as samsara remains. Apratiṣṭhita-nirvana is said to be reached when bodhisattvas eradicate both the afflictive obstructions (klesavarana) and the obstructions to omniscience (jñeyavarana), and is therefore different than the nirvana of arhats, who have eradicated only the former.

According to Alan Sponberg, apratiṣṭhita-Nibbāṇa
is “a nirvana that is not permanently established in, or bound to, any
one realm or sphere of activity”. This is contrasted with a kind of
nirvana which is “permanently established or fixed (pratiṣṭhita) in the transcendent state of nirvana-without-remainder (nirupadhisesa-Nibbāṇa).” According to Sponberg this doctrine developed among Yogacara
Buddhists who rejected earlier views which were based on an individual
liberation aimed at a transcendent state, separated from the mundane
sphere of human existence. Mahayana Buddhists rejected this view as
inconsistent with the universalist Mahayana ideal of the salvation of
all beings and with the absolutist non-dual Mahayana perspective that
did not see an ultimate distinction between samsara and Nibbāṇa. Sponberg also notes that the Madhyamika
school also had a hand in developing this idea, due to their rejection
of dualistic concepts which separated samsara and nirvana and their
promotion of a form of liberation which was totally without duality.

Though the idea that Buddhas remain active in the world can be traced back to the Mahasamghika school, the term apratiṣṭhita-nirvana
seems to be a Yogacara innovation. According to Gadjin Nagao, the term
is likely to be an innovation of the Yogacaras, and possibly of the
scholar Asanga (fl. 4th century CE). Sponberg states that this doctrine presents a “Soteriological Innovation in Yogacara Buddhism” which can be found mainly in works of the Yogacara school such as the Sandhinirmocana-sutra, the Lankavatarasutra, the Mahayanasutralamkara, and is most fully worked out in the Mahayana-samgraha of Asanga. In Chapter IX of the samgraha, Asanga presents the classic definition of apratiṣṭhita-nirvana in the context of discussing the severing of mental obstacles (avarana):

This severing is the apratiṣṭhita-Nibbāṇa of the bodhisattva. It has as its characteristic (laksana) the revolution (paravrtti) of the dual base (asraya) in which one relinquishes all defilements (klesa), but does not abandon the world of death and rebirth (samsara).

his commentary on this passage, Asvabhava (6th century), states that
the wisdom which leads to this state is termed non-discriminating
cognition (nirvikalpaka-jñana) and he also notes that this state is a union of wisdom (prajña) and compassion (karuna):

The bodhisattva dwells in this revolution of the base as if in an immaterial realm (arupyadhatu). On the one hand—with respect to his own personal interests (svakartham)—he is fully endowed with superior wisdom (adhiprajña) and is thus not subject to the afflictions (klesa) while on the other hand—with respect to the interests of other beings (parartham)—he is fully endowed with great compassion (mahakaruna) and thus never ceases to dwell in the world of death and re-birth (samsara).

to Sponberg, in Yogacara, the Buddha’s special wisdom that allows
participation in both nirvana and samsara, termed non-discriminating
cognition (nirvikalpaka-jñana) has various aspects: a negative
aspect which is free from discrimination that binds one to samsara and
positive and dynamic aspects which intuitively cognize the Absolute and
give a Buddha “access to the Absolute without yielding efficacy in the

Paths to Buddhahood

Most sutras of the Mahāyāna tradition, states Jan Nattier, present three alternate goals of the path: Arhatship, Pratyekabuddhahood, and Buddhahood. However, according an influential Mahāyāna text called the Lotus Sutta, while the lesser attainment of individual nirvana is taught as a skillful means by the Buddha in order to help beings of lesser capacities; ultimately, the highest and only goal is the attainment of Buddhahood. The Lotus sutta further states that, although these three paths are seemingly taught by Buddhas as separate vehicles (yana), they are really all just skillful ways (upaya) of teaching a single path (ekayana), which is the bodhisattva path to full Buddhahood.
Thus, these three separate goals are not really different at all, the
‘lesser’ paths are actually just clever teaching devices used by Buddhas
to get people to practice, eventually though, they will be led to the
one and only path of Mahāyāna and full Buddhahood.

The Mahāyāna commentary the Abhisamayalamkara presents the path of the bodhisattva as a progressive formula of Five Paths (pañcamārga). A practitioner on the Five Paths advances through a progression of ten stages, referred to as the bodhisattva bhūmis (grounds or levels).


The end stage practice of the Mahāyāna removes the imprints of delusions, the obstructions to omniscience (sarvākārajñatā),
which prevent simultaneous and direct knowledge of all phenomena. Only
Buddhas have overcome these obstructions and, therefore, only Buddhas
have omniscience knowledge, which refers to the power of a being in some
way to have “simultaneous knowledge of all things whatsoever”. From the
Mahāyāna point of view, an arhat who has achieved the nirvana of the Lesser Vehicle
will still have certain subtle obscurations that prevent the arhat from
realizing complete omniscience. When these final obscurations are
removed, the practitioner will attain apratiṣṭhita-nirvana and achieve full omniscience.

Buddhahood’s bodies

See also: Trikaya

The Garbhadhatu mandala of the Mahavairocana Tantra representing multiple manifestations of the Dharmakaya, the Buddha Vairocana.

Some Mahāyāna traditions see the Buddha in docetic
terms, viewing his visible manifestations as projections from its
Nibbanic state. According to Etienne Lamotte, Buddhas are always and at
all times in nirvana, and their corporeal displays of themselves and
their Buddhic careers are ultimately illusory. Lamotte writes of the

They are born, reach
enlightenment, set turning the Wheel of Dharma, and enter nirvana.
However, all this is only illusion: the appearance of a Buddha is the
absence of arising, duration and destruction; their nirvana is the fact
that they are always and at all times in Nibbāṇa.’

This doctrine, developed among the Mahāsaṃghikas, where the historical person, Gautama Buddha, was one of these transformation bodies (Skt. nirmāṇakāya), while the essential Buddha is equated with the transcendental Buddha called dharmakāya. In Mahāyāna, this eventually developed into the doctrine of the “Three Bodies” of the Buddha (Trikaya).
This doctrine is interpreted in different ways by the different
Mahāyāna traditions. According to Reginald Ray, it is “the body of
reality itself, without specific, delimited form, wherein the Buddha is
identified with the spiritually charged nature of everything that is.”


See also: Buddha-nature

An alternative idea of Mahāyāna nirvana is found in the Tathāgatagarbha sūttas. The title itself means a garbha (womb, matrix, seed) containing Tathagata (Buddha). These Suttas
suggest, states Paul Williams, that ‘all sentient beings contain a
Tathagata’ as their ‘essence, core or essential inner nature’. The tathāgatagarbha doctrine (also called buddhadhatu, buddha-nature),
at its earliest probably appeared about the later part of the 3rd
century CE, and is verifiable in Chinese translations of 1st millennium
CE. Most scholars consider the tathāgatagarbha doctrine of an ‘essential nature’ in every living being is equivalent to ‘Self’,
and it contradicts the “no self” (or no soul, no atman, anatta)
doctrines in a vast majority of Buddhist texts, leading scholars to
posit that the Tathagatagarbha Suttas were written to promote Buddhism to non-Buddhists. The Mahāyāna tradition thus often discusses nirvana with its concept of the tathāgatagarbha, the innate presence of Buddhahood. According to Alex Wayman, Buddha nature has its roots in the idea of an innately pure luminous mind (prabhasvara citta), “which is only adventitiously covered over by defilements (agantukaklesa)” lead to the development of the concept of Buddha-nature, the idea that Buddha-hood is already innate, but not recognised.

The tathāgatagarbha has numerous interpretations in the various schools of Mahāyāna and Vajrayana Buddhism. Indian Madhyamaka philosophers generally interpreted the theory as a description of emptiness and as a non implicative negation (a negation which leaves nothing un-negated). According to Karl Brunnholzl, early Indian Yogacaras like Asanga and Vasubandhu referred to the term as “nothing but suchness in the sense of twofold identitylessness“. However some later Yogacarins like Ratnakarasanti considered it “equivalent to naturally luminous mind, nondual self-awareness.”

The debate as to whether tathāgatagarbha was just a way to refer to emptiness or whether it referred to some kind of mind or consciousness also resumed in Chinese Buddhism, with some Chinese Yogacarins, like Fazang and Ratnamati supporting the idea that it was an eternal non-dual mind, while Chinese Madhyamikas like Jizang rejecting this view and seeing tathāgatagarbha as emptiness and “the middle way.”

In some Tantric Buddhist texts such as the Samputa Tantra, nirvana is described as purified, non-dualistic ’superior mind’.

In Tibetan Buddhist philosophy, the debate continues to this day. There are those like the Gelug school, who argue that tathāgatagarbha is just emptiness (described either as dharmadhatu, the nature of phenomena, or a nonimplicative negation).
Then there are those who see it as the non-dual union of the mind’s
unconditioned emptiness and conditioned lucidity (the view of Gorampa of the Sakya school). Others such as the Jonang school and some Kagyu figures, see tathāgatagarbha
as a kind of Absolute which “is empty of adventitious defilements which
are intrinsically other than it, but is not empty of its own inherent

Mahāparinibbāṇa Sūtta

According to some scholars, the language used in the tathāgatagarbha genre of sutras can be seen as an attempt to state orthodox Buddhist teachings of dependent origination using positive language. Kosho Yamamoto translates the explanation of nirvana in the Mahāyāna Mahāparinibbāṇa Sūtta (c. 100-220 CE) as follows:

good man! We speak of “Nibbāṇa”.
But this is not “Great” “Nirvana”. Why is it “Nirvana”, but not “Great
Nibbāṇa”? This is so when one cuts away defilement without seeing the
Buddha-Nature. That is why we say Nirvana, but not Great Nirvana. When
one does not see the Buddha-Nature, what there is is the non-Eternal and
the non-Self. All that there is is but Bliss and Purity. Because of
this, we cannot have Mahaparinirvana, although defilement has been done
away with. When one sees well the Buddha-Nature and cuts away
defilement, we then have Mahaparinirvana. Seeing the Buddha-Nature, we
have the Eternal, Bliss, the Self, and the Pure. Because of this, we can
have Mahaparinibbana, as we cut away defilement.”

“O good
man! “Nib” means “not”; “ba” means “to extinguish”. Nibbāṇa means “non-
extinction”. Also, “ba” means “to cover”. Nibbāṇa
also means “not covered”. “Not covered” is Nibbāṇa. “Ba” means “to go
and come”. “Not to go and come” is Nibbāṇa. “Ba” means “to take”. “Not
to take” is Nibbāṇa.” “Ba” means “not fixed”. When there is no
unfixedness, there is Nibbāṇa. “Ba” means “new and old”. What is not new
and old is Nibbāṇa.
“O good man! The disciples of Uluka [i.e. the founder of the Vaishesika school of philosophy] and Kapila [founder of the Samkhya school of philosophy] say: “Va means characterisitic”. “Characteristiclessness” is Nibbāṇa.”
“O good man! Ba means “is”. What is not “is” is Nibbāṇa. Va means
harmony. What has nothing to be harmonised is Nibbāṇa. Va means
suffering. What has no suffering is Nibbāṇa.
“O good man! What has cut away defilement is no Nibbāṇa. What calls
forth no defilement is Nirvana. O good man! The All-Buddha-Tathagata
calls forth no defilement. This is Nibbāṇa.

— Mahayana Mahaparinibbana Sutta, Chapter 31, Translated by Kōshō Yamamoto

In the Mahāparinibbāṇa Sūtta, the Buddha speak of four attributes which make up nirvana. Writing on this Mahayana understanding of Nibbāṇa, William Edward Soothill and Lewis Hodous state:

‘The Nibbāṇa Sutta claims for
nirvana the ancient ideas of permanence, bliss, personality, purity in
the transcendental realm. Mahayana declares that Hinayana, by denying
personality in the transcendental realm, denies the existence of the
Buddha. In Mahayana, final nirvana is both mundane and transcendental,
and is also used as a term for the Absolute.

See also


  1. The
    names of the founders of Hindu philosophy, along with Rishaba of
    Jainism, as well as Shiva and Vishnu, are found in the Chinese versions
    of the Mahaparinibbana Sutta.

Further notes on “different paths”

  1. See Thanissaro (2000).
    Verse 290 of this sutta is translated by Thanissaro as: “The Blessed
    One said this: “This is the direct path for the purification of beings,
    for the overcoming of sorrow & lamentation, for the disappearance of
    pain & distress, for the attainment of the right method, & for
    the realization of Unbinding—in other words, the four frames of


  1. Contemporary
    translator Jeffrey Hopkins provides the following analogy:”If you put
    garlic in a vessel, it deposits some of its odor in the vessel itself;
    Thus when you seek to clean the vessel, it is necessary to first remove
    the garlic.
    Similarly, a consciousness conceiving inherent existence, like garlic, deposits predispositions in the mind that produce the appearance
    of inherent existence; Thus, there is no way to cleanse the mind of
    those predispositions, which are like the flavor of garlic left in the
    vessel of the mind, until one removes all consciousnesses conceiving of
    inherent existence from the mind. First, the garlic must be removed;
    then, its odor can be removed.
    For this reason, according to the Consequence School, until one has utterly removed all the afflictive obstructions,
    one cannot begin to remove the obstructions to omniscience. Since this
    is the case, a practitioner cannot begin overcoming the obstructions to
    omniscience on any of the seven first bodhisattva grounds, which are called “impure” because one still has afflictive obstructions to be abandoned.
    one begins abandoning the obstructions to omniscience on the eighth
    bodhisattva ground, and continues to do so on the ninth and tenth, these
    three being called the ‘three pure grounds” because the afflictive
    obstructions have been abandoned.”

Further notes on quotes

  1. Gethin
    footnote: On the notion of ’skill in means’ see Michael Pye, Skilful
    Means (London, 1978); Williams, Mahāyāna Buddhism, 143–50.


  1. William Edward Soothill, Lewis Hodous, A Dictionary of Chinese Buddhist Terms, Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi, 1997, p. 328. Digital version


Printed sources

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  • Akizuki, Ryōmin (1990), New Mahāyāna: Buddhism for a Post-modern World, Jain Publishing Company
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  • Baroni, Helen Josephine (2002), The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Zen Buddhism, The Rosen Publishing Group
  • Bhikkhu Bodhi (translator) (2000), The Connected Discourses of the Buddha: A New Translation of the Samyutta Nikaya, Boston: Wisdom Publications, ISBN 0-86171-331-1
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  • Bhikkhu Bodhi (2011), The Noble Eightfold Path: Way to the End of Suffering (Kindle ed.), Independent Publishers Group
  • Bhikkhu Bodhi (2012), A Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma: The Abhidhammattha Sangaha (Kindle ed.), Independent Publishers Group
  • Bhikkhu Ñāṇamoli (1999), “Introduction”, in Buddhaghosa; Bhikkhu Ñāṇamoli, trans. (eds.), Visuddhimagga: The Path of Purification, Buddhist Publication Society, ISBN 1-928706-01-0
  • Buswell, Robert E. (2004), Encyclopedia of Buddhism, MacMillan, ISBN 978-0028657202
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  • Clarke, Peter (2004), Encyclopedia of New Religious Movements, Routledge
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  • Collins, Steven (2010), Nirvana: Concept, Imagery, Narrative, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-88198-2
  • Conze, Edward (1967), Thirty years of Buddhis Studies. Selected essays by Edward Conze (PDF), Bruno Cassirer
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  • Duckworth, Douglas (2011), Jamgon Mipam: His Life and Teachings (Kindle ed.), Shambhala
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    Enlightenment Followed by Gradual Cultivation: Tsung-mi’s Analysis of
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Further reading

  • Ajahn Brahm, “Mindfulness, Bliss, and Beyond: A Meditator’s Handbook” (Wisdom Publications 2006) Part II.
  • Katukurunde Nanananda, “Nibbana - The Mind Stilled (Vol. I-VII)” (Dharma Grantha Mudrana Bharaya, 2012).
  • Kawamura, Bodhisattva Doctrine in Buddhism, Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 1981, pp. 11.
  • Lindtner, Christian (1997). “Problems of Pre-Canonical Buddhism”. Buddhist Studies Review. 14 (2).
  • Yogi Kanna, “Nirvana: Absolute Freedom” (Kamath Publishing; 2011) 198 pages.
  • Steven Collins. Nirvana: Concept, Imagery, Narrative (Cambridge University Press; 2010) 204 pages.

External links

Wikiquote has quotations related to: Nibbana (Buddhism)

Look up Nibbāṇa (buddhism) in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

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  • According
    to Gombrich, the use of the term “three fires” alludes to the three
    fires which a brahmin householder had to keep alight, and tend daily. In
    later Buddhism, the origin of this metaphor was forgotten, and the term
    was replaced with “the three poisons.[5]

  • Not only the three fires, but also the extinction of the defilements and tanha are mentioned as nirvana:[18]
    • “Calming of all conditioned things, giving up of all
      defilements, extinction of “thirst”, detachment, cessation, Nibbāna.”
      (Saṃyutta-nikāya I (PTS), p. 136)
    • “O Rādha, the extinction of ‘thirst’ (Taṇhakkhayo) is Nibbāna.” (Saṃyutta-nikāya I (PTS), p. 190)
    • Sutta-nipata: “Where there is nothing; where naught is
      grasped, there is the Isle of No-Beyond. Nirvāṇa do I call it—the utter
      extinction of aging and dying.”[citation needed]
    • Majjhima Nikaya 2-Att. 4.68: “The liberated mind (citta) that no longer clings’ means nibbāna.”

  • Even Buddhaghosa, the great Theravada commentator, ignored the original etymological meaning of the word, and presented an interpretation of nirvana based on the root √vā, “to weave.”[16]

  • Gombrich explains that the five skandhas or aggregates are the bundles of firewood that fuel the three fires.[23] The Buddhist practitioner ought to “drop” these bundles, so that the fires are no longer fueled and “blow out”.[24]

  • Vimoksha
    [解脱] (Skt; Jpn gedatsu ). Emancipation, release, or liberation. The
    Sanskrit words vimukti, mukti, and moksha also have the same meaning.
    Vimoksha means release from the bonds of earthly desires, delusion,
    suffering, and transmigration. While Buddhism sets forth various kinds
    and stages of emancipation, or enlightenment, the supreme emancipation
    is nirvana, a state of perfect quietude, freedom, and deliverance.”[web 3]

  • See Digha Nikaya 15, Mahanidana Sutta, which describes a nine-fold chain of causation. Mind-and-body (nama-rupa) and consciousness (vijnana)
    do condition here each other (verse 2 & 3). In verse 21 and 22, it
    is stated that consciousness comes into the mother’s womb, and finds a
    resting place in mind-and-body. [68]

  • M. Falk (1943, Nama-rupa and Dharma-rupa

  • According to Alexander Wynne, Schayer:”referred to passages in which “consciousness” (vinnana) seems to be the ultimate reality or substratum (e.g. A I.10) 14 as well as the Saddhatu Sutra,
    which is not found in any canonical source but is cited in other
    Buddhist texts — it states that the personality (pudgala) consists of
    the six elements (dhatu) of earth, water, fire, wind, space and
    consciousness; Schayer noted that it related to other ancient Indian
    ideas. Keith’s argument is also based on the Saddhatu Sutra as
    well as “passages where we have explanations of Nirvana which echo the
    ideas of the Upanishads regarding the ultimate reality.” He also refers
    to the doctrine of “a consciousness, originally pure, defiled by
    adventitious impurities.”[70]

  • Cited in Wynne (2007) p.99.[70]

  • In the Dhammapada, the Buddha describes nirvāṇa as “the highest happiness”,[81] an enduring happiness qualitatively different from the limited, transitory happiness derived from impermanent things.

  • According
    to Peter Harvey, the Theravada-tradition tends to minimize mystical
    tendencies, but there is also a tendency to stress the complete
    otherness of nirvana from samsara. The Pāli Canon
    provides good grounds for this minimalistic approach, bit it also
    contains material suggestive of a Vijnavada-type interpretation of nirvāṇa, namely as a radical transformation of consciousness.[109]

  • These four stages are: Stream-enterer (Sotapanna), Once returner (Sakadagami), Non-returner (Anagami), Worthy one (Arhat)

  • See for example the Jhana Sutta, Access to Insight: Readings in Theravada Buddhism.

  • A
    number of the suttas referenced below as well as Buddhaghosa himself
    refer not explicitly to nirvana but to “the path of purification” (Pali:
    Visuddhimagga). In Visuddhimagga, Ch. I, v. 5, Buddhaghosa notes: “Herein, purification should be understood as nibbana, which being devoid of all stains, is utterly pure” (Buddhaghosa & Ñāṇamoli, 1999, p. 6.)

  • These include:
    1. By insight (vipassana) alone [a]
    2. By jhana and understanding (see Dh. 372)[125]
    3. by deeds, vision and righteousness (see MN iii.262)[b]
    4. By virtue, consciousness and understanding (7SN i.13);[c]
    5. by virtue, understanding, concentration and effort;[d]
    6. By the four foundations of mindfulness.[128][e]

  • There is a clear reference in the Anguttara Nikaya to a “luminous mind” present within all people, be they corrupt or pure, whether or not it itself is pure or impure.[131]
    The Canon does not support the identification of the “luminous mind”
    with nirvanic consciousness, though it plays a role in the realization
    of nirvāṇa.[132][133]
    Upon the destruction of the fetters, according to one scholar, “the
    shining nibbanic consciousness flashes out” of it, “being without object
    or support, so transcending all limitations.”[134]

  • The
    Tibetan teacher Pabongka Rinpoche presents the path in three levels (or
    scopes. The first stage indicates a level of understanding or ethical
    conduct for non-Buddhists, and the second two stages are nirvana and Buddhahood.
    Pabongka Rinpoche: “The subject matter of these teachings can be
    included in the various paths of the three scopes. The small scope
    covers the causes to achieve the high rebirth states of the gods and
    humans: the ethics of abandoning the ten nonvirtues, etc. The medium
    scope includes the practices that will cause one to gain the definite
    excellence of liberation— such practices as abandoning [the first two of
    the] four truths, engaging in [the last two of these truths], and the
    practice of the three high trainings. The great scope contains the
    practices that bring about the definite excellence of omniscience— such
    practices as the development of bodhichitta, the six perfections, etc.
    Hence, all this subject matter forms a harmonious practice that will
    take a person to enlightenment and should be understood as being
    completely without contradiction.”[192]

  • The
    Hinayana path is sometimes equated with the modern day Theravada
    tradition, a classification which the Theravada-tradition rejects.
    Walpola Rahula: “We must not confuse Hinayana with Theravada because the
    terms are not synonymous. Theravada Buddhism went to Sri Lanka during
    the 3rd Century B.C. when there was no Mahayana at all. Hinayana sects
    developed in India and had an existence independent from the form of
    Buddhism existing in Sri Lanka. Today there is no Hinayana sect in
    existence anywhere in the world. Therefore, in 1950 the World Fellowship
    of Buddhists inaugurated in Colombo unanimously decided that the term
    Hinayana should be dropped when referring to Buddhism existing today in
    Sri Lanka, Thailand, Burma, Cambodia, Laos, etc. This is the brief
    history of Theravada, Mahayana and Hinayana.”[web 7]

  • Wayman and Wayman have disagreed with this view, and they state that the Tathagatagarbha is neither self nor sentient being, nor soul, nor personality.[215]

  • See Dh. 277, and dhp-277 Access to Insight: Readings in Theravada Buddhism, Buddharakkhita (1996a)
    In the Paramattha-mañjūsā (the Visuddhimagga commentary), vv. 9-10, it
    adds the following caveat regarding this option of “insight alone”: “The
    words ‘insight alone’ are meant to exclude, not virtue, etc., but
    serenity (i.e., jhana),
    […] [as typically reflected] in the pair, serenity and insight […]
    The word ‘alone’ actually excludes only that concentration with
    distinction [of jhanic absorption]; for concentration is classed as both
    access [or momentary] and absorption […] Taking this stanza as the
    teaching for one whose vehicle is insight does not imply that there is
    no concentration; for no insight comes about with momentary
    concentration. And again, insight should be understood as the three
    contemplations of impermanence, pain and not-self [see tilakkhana]; not contemplation of impermanence alone”.[124]

  • See Access to Insight: Readings in Theravada Buddhism, Thanissaro (2003).
    Verse 262 of this sutta is translated by Thanissaro as: “Action,
    clear-knowing, & mental qualities, virtue, the highest [way of]
    life: through this are mortals purified, not through clan or wealth.

  • The
    option expressed by SN i.13 is the basis for the entire rest of the
    Visuddhimagga’s exposition. It is the very first paragraph of the
    Visuddhimagga and states: “When a wise man, established well in virtue,
    develops consciousness and understanding, then as a bhikku ardent and
    sagacious, he succeeds in disentangling this tangle.[126] In the Visuddhimagga, Ch. I, verse 2, Buddhaghosa comments that this tangle refers to “the network of craving.” In verse 7, Buddhaghosa states that develops consciousness and understanding means “develops both concentration and insight.”[127]

  • SN i.53)Buddhaghosa & Ñāṇamoli
    (1999), p. 7, translate SN i.53 as: “He who is possessed of constant
    virtue, who has understanding, and is concentrated, who is strenuous and
    diligent as well, will cross the flood so difficult to cross.

  • Buswell:
    “It is found in dictionaries as an English word, nirvana, and has
    acquired a patina that makes many assume its meaning is obvious. Yet, it
    is a word about which Buddhists themselves have never reached

  • Buswell:
    “The Sanskrit term nirvana is an action noun signifying the act and
    effect of blowing (at something) to put it out, to blow out, or to
    extinguish, but the noun also signifies the process and outcome of
    burning out, becoming extinguished, cooling down, and hence, allaying,
    calming down, and also taming, making docile. Technically, in the
    religious traditions of India, the term denotes the process of
    accomplishing and experiencing freedom from the unquenchable thirst of
    desire and the pains of repeated births, lives, and deaths.[12]

  • Gombrich:
    “I hope it is not too farfetched to suggest that this may have
    contributed to an important development in the Mahayana: that it came to
    separate nirvana from bodhi, ‘awakening’ to the truth, Enlightenment,
    and to put a lower value on the former (Gombrich, 1992d). Originally
    nirvana and bodhi refer to the same thing; they merely use different
    metaphors for the experience. But the Mahayana tradition separated them
    and considered that nirvana referred only to the extinction of craving,
    with the resultant escape from the cycle of rebirth. This interpretation
    ignores the third fire, delusion: the extinction of delusion is of
    course in the early texts identical with what can be positively
    expressed as gnosis, Enlightenment.[17]

  • Bhikkhu
    Bodhi: “Etymologically, the word nibbāna — the Pali form of the better
    known Sanskrit nirvāṇa — is derived from a verb nibbāti meaning “to be
    blown out” or “to be extinguished.” It thus signifies the extinguishing
    of the worldly “fires” of greed, hatred, and delusion. But the Pali
    commentators prefer to treat it as the negation of, or “departure from”
    (nikkhantatta), the entanglement (vāna) of craving, the derivation which
    is offered here. For as long as one is entangled by craving, one
    remains bound in saṃsāra, the cycle of birth and death; but when all
    craving has been extirpated, one attains Nibbāna, deliverance from the
    cycle of birth and death.[21]

  • Rupert
    Gethin: “Literally nirvāṇa means ‘blowing out’ or ‘extinguishing’,
    although Buddhist commentarial writings, by a play on words, like to
    explain it as ‘the absence of craving’. But where English translations
    of Buddhist texts have ‘he attains nirvāṇa/parinirvāṇa’, the more
    characteristic Pali or Sanskrit idiom is a simple verb: ‘he or she
    nirvāṇa-s’ or more often ‘he or she parinirvānṇa-s’ (parinibbāyati).
    What the Pali and Sanskrit expression primarily indicates is the event
    or process of the extinction of the ‘fires’ of greed, aversion, and

  • See:
    • Rupert Gethin: “Literally nirvāṇa means ‘blowing out’ or
      ‘extinguishing’ […] What the Pali and Sanskrit expression primarily
      indicates is the event or process of the extinction of the ‘fires’ of
      greed, aversion, and delusion. At the moment the Buddha understood
      suffering, its arising, its cessation, and the path leading to its
      cessation, these fires were extinguished. This process is the same for
      all who reach awakening,[i]
      and the early texts term it either nirvāṇa or parinirvāṇa, the complete
      ‘blowing out’ or ‘extinguishing’ of the ‘fires’ of greed, aversion, and
      delusion. This is not a ‘thing’ but an event or experience.[25][ii]
    • Paul Williams: “[Nirvana] means ‘extinguishing’, as in ‘the
      extinguishing of a flame’, and it signifies soteriologically the
      complete extinguishing of greed, hatred, and fundamentally delusion
      (i.e. ignorance), the forces which power samsara.”[44]
    • Paul Williams: “Nirvana is broadly speaking the result of
      letting-go, letting-go the very forces of craving which power continued
      experiences of pleasure and inevitably suffering throughout this life,
      death, rebirth, and redeath. That, in a nutshell, is what nirvana is. It
      is the complete and permanent cessation of samsara, thence the
      cessation of all types of suffering, resulting from letting-go the
      forces which power samsara, due to overcoming ignorance (thence also
      hatred and delusion, the ‘three root poisons’) through seeing things the
      way they really are.”[44]
    • Donald Lopez: “[Nirvana] is used to refer to the extinction of
      desire, hatred, and ignorance and, ultimately, of suffering and
      rebirth.”[web 4]
    • Damien Keown states: “When the flame of craving is extinguished, rebirth ceases, and an enlightened person is not reborn.”[45]

  • Nibbāṇa during life and beyond death:
    • Donald Lopez states: “Two types of nirvana are […] described.
      The first is called ‘nirvana with remainder.’ […] The second type is
      called ‘nirvana without remainder’, or final Nibbāṇa.”
    • Peter Harvey states: “The first aspect of Nibbana is described as ‘with remainder of what is grasped at’ (sa-updadi-sesa), meaning that the khandas, the result of past grasping, still remain for him; the second is described as ‘without remainder of what is grasped at’ (an-upadi-sesa) (It.38-39).

  • Rupert
    Gethin: “Like the Buddha, any person who attains nirvāṇa does not
    remain thereafter forever absorbed in some transcendental state of mind.
    On the contrary he or she continues to live in the world; he or she
    continues to think, speak, and act as other people do—with the
    difference that all his or her thoughts, words, and deeds are completely
    free of the motivations of greed, aversion, and delusion, and motivated
    instead entirely by generosity, friendliness, and wisdom. This
    condition of having extinguished the defilements can be termed ‘nirvāṇa
    with the remainder [of life]’ (sopadhiśeṣa-nirvāṇa/sa-upādisesa-nibbāna): the nirvāṇa that comes from ending the occurrence of the defilements (kleśa/kilesa) of the mind; what the Pali commentaries call for short kilesa-parinibbāna.[iii] And this is what the Buddha achieved on the night of his awakening.”

  • Freedom from negative states:
    • Walpola Rahula: [one who has achieved nirvana is] “free from all ‘complexes’ and obsessions, the worries and troubles that torment others.”
    • Damien Keown: “Nirvana […] involves a radically transformed state
      of consciousness which is free of the obsession with ‘me and mine’.”
    • Rupert Gethin: “Any person who attains nirvāṇa […] continues to
      think, speak, and act as other people do—with the difference that all
      his or her thoughts, words, and deeds are completely free of the
      motivations of greed, aversion, and delusion, and motivated instead
      entirely by generosity, friendliness, and wisdom.

  • Peacefulness:
    • Bhikkhu Bodhi states: “The state of perfect peace that comes when craving is eliminated is Nibbāna (nirvāṇa).”
    • Joseph Goldstein states: “It is also described as the deathless, absolute peace, freedom, and so forth.”
    • Lama Surya Das states: “Nibbāṇa is inconceivable inner peace, the cessation of craving and clinging.”
    • Walpola Rahula states:
      “He who has realized the Truth, Nibbāṇa, is (…) joyful, exultant,
      enjoying the pure life, his faculties pleased, free from anxiety, serene
      and peaceful.”
    • Damien Keown states:
      “It is clear that nirvana-in-this-life is a psychological and ethical
      reality, a transformed state of personality characterized by peace, deep
      spiritual joy, compassion, and a refined and subtle awareness. Negative
      mental states and emotions such as doubt, worry, anxiety, and fear are
      absent from the enlightened mind. Saints in many religious traditions
      exhibit some or all of these qualities, and ordinary people also possess
      them to some degree, although imperfectly developed. An enlightened
      person, however, such as a Buddha or an Arhat, possesses them all

  • Non-reactiveness:
    • Phillip Moffitt states:
      “Nibbana literally means “cooled” and is analogous to a fire that’s no
      longer burning. Thus, when there is cessation, your mind no longer burns
      in response to the arising of pleasant and unpleasant in your life; it
      isn’t reactive or controlled by what you like or dislike.”
    • Ringu Tulku explains:
      “Someone who has attained […] the state of nirvana, will no longer
      react within the pattern of aversion and attachment. The way such a
      person sees things will be nondualistic and therefore non-conceptual.
      […] When this dual reaction is gone, nothing is haunting or fearful
      anymore. We see clearly, and nothing seems imposing, since nothing is
      imposed from our part. When there is nothing we do not like, there is
      nothing to fear. Being free from fear, we are peaceful. There is no need
      to run away from anything, and therefore no need to run after anything
      either. In this way there is no burden. We can have inner peace,
      strength, and clarity, almost independent from circumstances and
      situations. This is complete freedom of mind without any circumstantial
      entanglement; the state is called “nirvana” […]. Someone who has
      reached this state has gone beyond our usual way of being imprisoned in
      habitual patterns and distorted ways of seeing these things.”

  • Rupert
    Gethin: “Eventually ‘the remainder of life’ will be exhausted and, like
    all beings, such a person must die. But unlike other beings, who have
    not experienced ‘nirvāṇa’, he or she will not be reborn into some new
    life, the physical and mental constituents of being will not come
    together in some new existence, there will be no new being or person.
    Instead of being reborn, the person ‘parinirvāṇa-s’, meaning in this
    context that the five aggregates of physical and mental phenomena that
    constitute a being cease to occur. This is the condition of ‘nirvāṇa
    without remainder [of life]’ (nir-upadhiśeṣa-nirvāṇa/an-up
    ādisesa-nibbāna): nirvāṇa that comes from ending the occurrence of the
    aggregates (skandha/khandha) of physical and mental phenomena that
    constitute a being; or, for short, khandha-parinibbāna.
    Modern Buddhist usage tends to restrict ‘Nibbāṇa’ to the awakening
    experience and reserve ‘parinirvāṇa’ for the death experience.”

  • Walpola
    Rahula: “Now another question arises: What happens to the Buddha or an
    Arahant after his death, Parinibbāṇa? This comes under the category of
    unanswered questions (avyākata).
    [Samyutta Nikaya IV (PTS), p. 375 f.] Even when the Buddha spoke about
    this, he indicated that no words in our vocabulary could express what
    happens to an Arahant after his death. In reply to a Parivrājaka named
    Vaccha, the Buddha said that terms like ‘born’ or ‘not born’ do not
    apply in the case of an Arahant, because those things—matter, sensation,
    perception, mental activities, consciousness—with which the terms like
    ‘born’ and ‘not born’ are associated, are completely destroyed and
    uprooted, never to rise again after his death. [Majjhima Nikaya I (PTS),
    p. 486].”

  • Walpola
    Rahula: “An Arahant after his death is often compared to a fire gone
    out when the supply of wood is over, or to the flame of a lamp gone out
    when the wick and oil are finished.[Majjhima Nikaya I (PTS), p. 487]
    Here it should be clearly and distinctly understood, without any
    confusion, that what is compared to a flame or a fire gone out is not
    Nibbāṇa, but the ‘being’ composed of the Five Aggregates who realized
    Nibbāṇa. This point has to be emphasized because many people, even some
    great scholars, have misunderstood and misinterpreted this simile as
    referring to Nibbāṇa. Nibbāṇa is never compared to a fire or a lamp gone

  • Richard
    Gombrich, who studied with Walpola Rahula, notes: “[T]here is one point
    where the great scholar monk has let us down: his account of nirvana,
    in Chapter IV, is unclear and, to my mind, even at points
    self-contradictory […] In proclaiming (in block capitals) that ‘Truth
    is’, Rahula has for a moment fallen into Upanisadic mode.

  • In the Yamaka Sutta (SN 22.58), the monk Sariputta
    teaches that to state that a person who attains nirvana “does not
    exist” after death is not the correct view; the correct view is that nirvana-after-death is outside of all conceivable experience. The only accurate statement that can be made about nirvana-after-death is “That which is stressful (dukkha; suffering) has ceased and gone to its end.”

    The Aggivacchagotta Sutta
    states that the state of being after death cannot be described as
    either being reborn after death, not being reborn, being and not being
    reborn, or neither being nor not being reborn. The sutra concludes: “Any
    fire burning dependent on a sustenance of grass and timber, being
    unnourished — from having consumed that sustenance and not being offered
    any other — is classified simply as ‘out’ (unbound).
    Even so […]
    any physical form by which one describing the Tathagata [the Buddha]
    would describe him: That the Tathagata has abandoned, its root
    destroyed, made like a palmyra
    stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for
    future arising. Freed from the classification of form […] the
    Tathagata is deep, boundless, hard to fathom, like the sea. ‘Reappears’
    doesn’t apply. ‘Does not reappear’ doesn’t apply. ‘Both does & does
    not reappear’ doesn’t apply. ‘Neither reappears nor does not reappear’
    doesn’t apply.”

  • Walpola
    Rahula: “Nibbāṇa is beyond all terms of duality and relativity. It is
    therefore beyond our conceptions of good and evil, right and wrong,
    existence and non-existence. Even the word ‘happiness’ (sukha) which is
    used to describe Nirvāṇa has an entirely different sense here. Sāriputta
    once said: ‘O friend, Nirvāṇa is happiness! Nibbāṇa is happiness!’ Then
    Udāyi asked: ‘But, friend Sāriputta, what happiness can it be if there
    is no sensation?’ Sāriputta’s reply was highly philosophical and beyond
    ordinary comprehension: “That there is no sensation itself is

  • Ajahn
    Pasanno and Ajahn Amaro: “The Buddha avoided the nit-picking pedantry
    of many philosophers contemporary with him and opted for a more
    broad-brush, colloquial style, geared to particular listeners in a
    language which they could understand. Thus ‘viññana’ here can be assumed
    to mean ‘knowing’ but not the partial, fragmented, discriminative (vi-)
    knowing (-ñana) which the word usually implies. Instead it must mean a
    knowing of a primordial, transcendent nature, otherwise the passage
    which contains it would be self-contradictory.” They then give further
    context for why this choice of words may have been made; the passages
    may represent an example of the Buddha using his “skill in means” to
    teach Brahmins in terms they were familiar with.

  • Rupert
    Gethin: The Mahāyāna sūtras express two basic attitudes towards [the
    nirvana of the Lesser Vehicle]. The first [attitude] is that the path of
    the disciple [sravaka] and the path of the pratyeka-buddha do lead to a
    kind of awakening, a release from suffering, nirvāna, and as such are
    real goals. These goals are, however, inferior and should be renounced
    for the superior attainment of buddhahood. The second attitude,
    classically articulated by the Lotus Sūtra, sees the goal of the
    disciple and the pratyeka-buddha as not true goals at all. The fact that the Buddha taught them is an example of his ’skill in means’ (upaya-kauśalya) as a teacher.[vi]
    These goals are thus merely clever devices (upāya) employed by the
    Buddha in order to get beings to at least begin the practice of the
    path; eventually their practice must lead on to the one and only vehicle
    (eka-yāna) that is the mahāyāna, the vehicle ending in perfect

  • From the Mahayana point of view, the nonabiding (apratiṣṭhita) nirvana is superior to the Nibbāṇa of the Lesser Vehicle:
    • Thubten Thardo (Gareth Sparham) states: “The term “non-abiding
      nirvāṇa” indicates that a fully awakened buddha is utterly free from
      saṃsāra, yet due to compassion has not entered into a more restricted
      form of nirvāṇa that precludes continued activity within the world.”
    • Erik Pema Kunsang states (based on teachings by Tulku Orgyen
      Rinpoche and Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche): “The lesser nirvana refers to the
      liberation from cyclic existence attained by a hinayana practitioner.
      When referring to a buddha, nirvana is the great nondwelling
      state of enlightenment which falls neither into the extreme of samsaric
      existence nor into the passive state of cessation attained by an
    • Thrangu Rinpoche states: “The samadhi with the union of samatha and
      vipasyana fully developed will free one from the bondage of samsara so
      one attains a state of nonabiding nirvana, which is Buddhahood.
    • The Padmakara Translation Group states: “It is important to realize
      that the term [nirvana] is understood differently by the different
      vehicles: the nirvana of the Basic Vehicle, the peace of cessation that
      an Arhat attains, is very different from a Buddha’s “nondwelling”
      nirvana, the state of perfect enlightenment with awsareness that transcends both samsara
      and Nibbāṇa.”
    • Peter Harvey states: “An advanced Bodhisattva who has experienced
      Nirvana does not rest content with this. He turns again to samsara in
      the service of others, which the Mahayana-samgraha calls his
      ‘non-abiding’ (apratiṣṭhita) Nirvana, not clinging either to samsara or
      to Nirvana as something supposedly separate from this (Nagao, 1991).”
    • Rupert Gethin states: “For the Mahayana becoming a Buddha generally
      involves attaining what is characterized as the ‘unestablished’ or
      ‘non-abiding’ (apratiṣṭhita) Nibbāṇa: on the one hand the knowledge of a
      buddha that sees emptiness, is not ‘established’ in saṃsāra (by seizing
      on birth as an individual being, for example), on the other hand the
      great compassion of a buddha prevents the complete turning away from
      saṃsāra. So ultimately he abides neither in saṃsāra nor in Nibbāṇa.”
    • Duckworth: The Lesser Vehicle does not result in the practitioner
      becoming a complete buddha; rather, the aim is to achieve a personal
      nirvana that is the total extinction of existence. The Great Vehicle,
      however, does result in becoming a complete buddha. A buddha remains
      actively engaged in awakened with awareness activity to liberate beings for as long
      as samsara remains. Thus, those who accomplish the Great Vehicle do not
      abide in samsara due to their wisdom that sees its empty, illusory
      nature. Further, unlike those who attain the nirvana of the Lesser
      Vehicle to escape samsara, they do not abide in an isolated nirvana due
      to their compassion. For these reasons, in the Great Vehicle, Nibbāṇa is
      said to be “unlocated” or “nonabiding” (apratiṣṭhita), staying in neither samsara nor Nibbāṇa.

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