Mind Like Fire Unbound

by Thanissaro Bhikkhu

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End Notes

Becoming (bhava): States of sensuality, form, & formlessness that can develop from craving & clinging, and provide the condition for birth on both the internal & external levels.

Binding (vana): Related terms (cf. nibbana -- nibbuta) would be vivata, open; sanvuta, closed, restrained, tied up; & parivuta, surrounded. See PTS Dictionary, *Varati and *Vunati.

Brahman: The Brahmans of India have long maintained that they, by their birth, are worthy of the highest respect. Buddhism borrowed the term Brahman to apply to those who have attained the goal, to show that respect is earned not by birth, race, or caste, but by spiritual attainment.

Effluent (asava): Four qualities -- sensuality, views, becoming & ignorance -- that 'flow out' of the mind and create the flood (ogha) of the round of death & rebirth.

Factors of Awakening (sambojjhanga): The seven qualities, developed through jhana, that lead the mind to Awakening are (1) mindfulness, (2) investigation of phenomena, (3) energy, (4) rapture, (5) serenity, (6) concentration, & (7) equanimity.

Fetters (sanyojana): The ten Fetters that bind the mind to the round of death & rebirth are (1) self-identity views, (2) grasping at precepts & practices, (3) doubt, (4) sensual passion, (5) irritation, (6) passion for form, (7) passion for formlessness, (8) conceit, (9) restlessness, & (10) ignorance.

Hindrances (nivarana): The Five Hindrances that prevent the mind from gaining concentration are (1) sensual desire, (2) ill will, (3) sloth & torpor, (4) restlessness & anxiety, and (5) doubt.

Mara: The personification of evil & temptation.

Naga: A term commonly used to refer to strong, stately & heroic animals, such as elephants & magical serpents. In Buddhism, it is also used to refer to those who have attained the goal.

Stress (dukkha): Dukkha, which is traditionally translated in the Commentaries as, 'that which is hard to bear,' is notorious for having no truly adequate equivalent in English, but 'stress' -- in its basic sense as a strain on body or mind -- seems to be as close as English can get. In the Pali Canon, dukkha applies both to physical & to mental phenomena, ranging from the intense stress of acute anguish or pain to the innate burdensomeness of even the most subtle mental or physical fabrications.

Such (tadi): An adjective to describe one who has attained the goal. It indicates that the person's state is indefinable but not subject to change or influences of any sort.

Tathagata: Literally, 'one who has become real (tatha-agata),' an epithet used in ancient India for a person who has attained the highest religious goal. In Buddhism, it usually refers specifically to the Buddha, although occasionally it also refers to any of his disciples who have attained the Buddhist goal.


Bibliography [go to top]

Blair, Chauncey J. Heat in the Rig Veda and Atharva Veda. (New Haven: American Oriental Society, 1961.)

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Gonda, Jan. Some Observations on the Relations between 'Gods' and 'Powers' in the Veda, a propos of the Phrase, sunuh sahasah. (s'Gravenhage: Mouton & Co., 1957.)

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__________. The Magic of the Mind: An Exposition of the Kalakarama Sutta. (Kandy: Buddhist Publication Society, 1974.)

Nyanaponika Thera. Anatta and Nibbana: Egolessness and Deliverance. (Kandy: Buddhist Publication Society, 1971.)

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Warder, A. K. Outline of Indian Philosophy. (Delhi: Motilal Barnasidass, 1971.)


Mind Like Fire Unbound

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Revised: Sat 17 October 1998
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