Hey there all. So I’ve been wondering about path and fruition for the four stages for a while now. After reading that these terms are considered to be simply mind moments in the Abhidhamma, I looked to see what the suttas say of them. So they designate eight types of persons, understood. Only the final one, arahattaphala is asekha, beyond training, understood. Even the distinction between magga and phala in each level of awakening I understand. One who is practicing for the fruit of Stream-Entry is not the same as a Stream-Enterer. But I don’t understand the difference between say a Stream-Enterer and one practicing for the fruit of Once-Return. Basically my question is: what’s the difference between the fruit of one level and the path of the next? Why are they distinct persons? The four levels of attainment made a lot of sense until I heard that really it’s eight types of Noble Persons. So if anyone has anything to say on this it would be greatly appreciated. It could be from the suttas, it could be what you’ve read or heard, or it could be your own input.
I had an idea that maybe the difference is that one who’s attained the fruits of a certain level just stops practicing and is content with their attainment until the next life, and one practicing for the next level is one who’s not content with their attainment and wishes to be closer to nibbana? Also one practicing for Stream-Entry isn’t a Stream-Enterer yet, but they’re a Noble One? Are they said to possess the path as a sotapanno does? I’m confused, and any clarification would be awesome and I’d be grateful!