What about asaññasatta?

This isn’t the argument; it is that the whole cosmic structure is simply an example of what we might expect, given the (pre-)historical contexts in play. The framing of the Four Truths matches a medical model that was in use; anatta is contextualized against both basic conceit as well ongoing Upanisadic ideas about the atman; correspondence theory(s); similes; etc.

What I am suggesting is that while there’d be another cosmology if the Dhamma had arisen in the Americas with Medicine/Mystery ideations & so forth instead of Brahmins, basic ‘buddhavacana’ would remain accessible. Nevermind Hindu parallels; the Dhamma is only incidentally ‘Dhamma’.

But, I easily forget that this is nevertheless a field of inquiry. I suppose it’s a hot-button topic for me, eh?

I totally agree with you on that. Saffron robes are not necessary for reaching enlightenment, the cosmology could have been organized in a different way, etc.

The biggest issue is however what is the basic buddhavacana, what is essential content of the Dhamma as description of how the world really is. I suppose, you think cosmology as presented in the Suttas isn’t really a part of it and you are not really interested in it as a spiritually relevant thing. I think it is most probably partially ‘dhammic’ (spheres of rebirth and the tiloka) - even though I still have my doubts - and these parts do matter when we talk about spirituality, but the whole asannasatta story and the names of gods and how many concubines Sakka has… It’s not really my thing. Finally, there may be people, and I presume there were more of them in previous centuries, for whose understanding of the Dhamma the whole cosmology in its local variation was central. My point is that it is always a great idea to keep in mind how contingent the current incarnation of the Dhamma is, but it’s also a great idea to be very careful about what one thinks is essential to it because a) the borders between contingency and essentiality are likely to be rather fuzzy than clear-cut, b) one will almost inevitably make choices based on one’s personal preference and not on proofs, c) there will inevitably be issues where there can be no proof. This whole long phrase just to say one thing: I am not really a big fan of the cosmology as presented in Suttas but I personally am unwilling to reject it altogether. And it is still a fun thing to do research about :slight_smile:


This realm acts as a barrier between the realm of the non returners and the lower brahma realms. Which are the 3rd jhana and below. An arahat must overcome this mindless state first to achieve enlightenment. Whatever that is. You can only imagine how the mind works in brahmaloka. Since even in the 4th heaven it is called the abode of pure delight and gaiety. You are probably in a state of constant ecstasy. Like when you’re under drugs like meth, heroin and cocaine. Brahmas don’t have genders, they’re all the same. But high level devas have the ability to create like a brahma would be. I think it’s really hard to imagine what the state of mind is like in the brahma world. Let alone the arahat realm.

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