This sutta has a hidden meaning. It’s seems that Buddha have said this because that’s what he considered the Path. That’s exactly the bodhisatta Path. I mean it seems this sutta shows they have believed in it as the thing humans has to do.
With that merit as a basis
Made abundant by generosity, You should establish other people
In the true Dhamma and the holy life.”
That’s sounds like very similar to Bodhisatta Path
When the devas know that a deva
Is about to pass from their midst,
Out of compassion they encourage him:
“Return here, deva, again and again.”
So the deva of course can keep being reborn on earth and establishing others in Dhamma and the holy life.
I know what most will think. Because they see heaven as the best. It obviously doesn’t look like that.
No, it’s not a Bodhisattva path it implied. Bodhisatta path is not just encourging others to practice Dhamma, but also promoting Bodhisatta ideal (instead of Arahantahood). The quote is similiar with the one the Buddha said to first monks shortly after his first discourse in SN 4.5:
Wander forth, mendicants, for the welfare and happiness of the people, out of compassion for the world, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans.
Teach the Dhamma that’s good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased. And reveal a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure.
There will be those who understand the teaching!
Of course it’s not saying Bodhisattva path. But you can’t see the bigger picture. But I respect your understanding.
There is clearly not a indicating path here.
But Buddha never said to come to earth again and again until Arahthood? Did he? There is a not sutta. Because we are missing alot. But from Stream-enterer it’s 7 births.
There is this sort of Path where devas keep doing it out of benefit of humanity. You can’t see it but these are highly developed devas from beginningless times. Think about it. from before the Buddhas we can even imagine. Do you know how developed those persons where, to see only the benefit of humanity? And keep coming to earth again and again? You probably don’t have faith those beings are among us.
You don’t have to say it like that my friend. Your thinking modern Bodhisattva path. But I believe the path was neither. But what the devas mentioned about generosity. That’s why Buddha said don’t be afraid of good merits.
The next qoute from a sutta shows that back in time there was very highly developed beings. So much this happened to them probably until now.
In the same way, monks, few are the beings who, on passing away from the deva realm, are reborn among devas. Far more are the beings who, on passing away from the deva realm, are reborn in hell… in the animal womb… in the domain of the hungry ghosts.-56
We obviously are not in a time that happens. That’s why he said few. Obviously just imagine when people where more innocent in mind. How can they have bad intentions if they didn’t have developed brain like ours to really understand what is what.
I mean they do get reborn from devas to devas realm and then probably to earth sometimes
When the Ancestors was at the deathbed of Citta the Householder, it’s probably ancestors from long time ago. They can help us with Dhamma also. But we all barely can see them.