What is enlightenment?

This is great, and it also covers

So far it seems to me from this discussion and further readings one who has

  1. Write knowledge 10 fold path Ten fold path, the extension of the Eightfold Path of the Buddha - Buddha heads
  2. Destroyed all kinds of desire, ignorance
  3. Understood and eradicated all steps of suffering, and reached the end goal of suffering
  4. Laid down the burden of 5 aggregates of clinging
  5. Destroyed 10 fetters of existence
  6. And Obtained 3 super and 3 higher knowledges chalabhiññā Abhijñā - Wikipedia
  7. And became an Arhant by either ways

is enlightened. Its not simple to describe enlightenment and impossible for others to judge if someone is enlightened unless they have super knowledge and they themselves are at the level to see it in you or vice versa.

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Number 6 in your list is optional. Some people get the fancy enlightenment with the abhinja upgrade, but most opt for the basic package (which just includes the rest of your list hehe) :slightly_smiling_face:


This is not correct. The sixth and only supermundane abhinna, the extinction of all cankers through penetrating insight, is the only one necessary for the realization of arahatship (MN 36, MN 60, D13).


Oh, yeah…


But in his list he said all 6 were necessary, which is not correct. And, technically, that knowledge is synonymous with the “[right] knowledge” he already mentioned in point 1. So there :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:


Has developed the five spiritual faculties and the seven factors of enlightenment. That is there’s no enlightenment without meditation.

The same number of lifetimes, would be much more difficult.

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The enobbling task pertaining to cessation of suffering - aka enlightenment - is very clearly stated by the Buddha: verify it for yourself:

‘This noble truth of the cessation of suffering should be realized.’
‘Taṃ kho panidaṃ dukkhanirodhaṃ ariyasaccaṃ sacchikātabban’

It is not consistent with the framework of the four noble truths to debate on personal views of what enlightenment is or not.

I consider to be a bonus that the Buddha apparently gave us hints, similes and analogies - as per recorded in EBTs - of how refreshing and reassuring it was for him to fulfill that ennobling task himself.



As given in the AN, pañcakanipāta, paṭhamapaṇṇāsakaṃ, pañcaṅgikavaggo, vimuttāyatanasuttaṃ,
The yogi experiences pāmojjaṃ, pīti, and passaddhi.
When he is at this samādhi, if he starts to check the steps he has successfully completed in NEP (Noble Eightfold Path), and discover that he is done with sammā vācā, sammā kammanta, and sammā ājīva then he understands that all his requirements for fulfillment of sīla are done.
To come to this level, he has developed the strong faith due to understanding of virtues of The Buddha, The Dhamma, and The Sangha.
These are the requirements to attain sotāpatti.
Continuing with the practice of Satipaṭṭhānā he understands the eradication of pañca nīvaranā and happily move forward till he attain total vimuttiṃ.
That mendicant feels inspired by the meaning and the teaching in that Dhamma, no matter how the Teacher or a respected spiritual companion teaches it.Yathā yathā, bhikkhave, tassa bhikkhuno satthādhammaṃ deseti, aññataro vā garuṭṭhāniyosabrahmacārī tathā tathā so tasmiṃ dhammeatthapaṭisaṃvedī ca hoti dhammapaṭisaṃvedī ca.2.4Feeling inspired, joy springs up.Tassa atthapaṭisaṃvedino dhammapaṭisaṃvedinopāmojjaṃ jāyati.2.5Being joyful, rapture springs up.Pamuditassa pīti jāyati.2.6When the mind is full of rapture, the body becomes tranquil.Pītimanassa kāyo passambhati.2.7When the body is tranquil, one feels bliss.Passaddhakāyo sukhaṃ vedeti.2.8And when blissful, the mind becomes immersed in samādhi.Sukhino cittaṃ samādhiyati.2.9This is the first opportunity for freedom. If a mendicant stays diligent, keen, and resolute at this time, their mind is freed, their defilements are ended, and they arrive at the supreme sanctuary.Idaṃ, bhikkhave, paṭhamaṃ vimuttāyatanaṃ yatthabhikkhuno appamattassa ātāpino pahitattassaviharato avimuttaṃ vā cittaṃ vimuccati,aparikkhīṇā vā āsavā parikkhayaṃ gacchanti,ananuppattaṃ vā anuttaraṃ yogakkhemaṃanupāpuṇāti. (1)

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I think of it as the attainment of reliable knowledge. Suffering is due to our reliance on unreliable knowledge.

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All Agreed, this is already covered in eight mindfulness of noble eight fold path

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Agreed all of this is already covered in noble eight fold path

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I think you are right here as main focus and central idea of Buddha’s curiosity and crux of teaching was liberation from suffering so in this list

No. 3 must be most important and others either automatically fall in place or are co-developed

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You will need two things,

  1. A map (a growing measure of righ view)
  2. A flashlight (Deep meditation)

You will need the words of another and significant inspiration. You can’t go past ‘BSWA youtube’ or ‘BSV dhamma talks’ , that is unless you can spend time with some real sangha or enlightened beings, in which case, optimise your priorities. But hey, why are you asking?
You can see for yourself here and now :seedling:


Everything taught by The Buddha is in the Noble Eightfold Path, isn’t it?
It is the only path for realization.

It is the end of bhava (exist) — translate from a bhante from sri lanka

Bhava nirodho nibbanam - the end of existence is nibbana

Because we have a self and we thought we exist… while the truth doesnt say so, anicca anatta dukkha

Dukkha is to be born, aging and to die, which mean we are caught in time and place dimension

The nibbana is when you dont see that you exist here anymore, the body itself is a bliss , which is called nibbana bliss, and you can experience cessation of existence which is the nibbana without residue
Hope you realize the nibbana soon too


Oh what a topic is this, wonder when buddha would have experience of enlightenment, he would have had a question wait a minute is that real, a delusion, wow and then nothing, its being never heard of before what is this
All he can correlate to is the realization its very profound, beyond concept, and the experience is like the knotted ball of thread, with rushes and reeds unfolding and opening all by itself each knot after another with a realization oh that’s how it is but would have struggled to explain it, just realize it
Probably that’s why he sat for meditation 7 days after to do further investigation

  • How can buddha convince himself and others on how it was done or what it is, who is listening and why should they care
  • is this something to achieve, its physical or mental
  • how can buddha tell others what is highest happiness when they haven’t seen by themselves
  • At one moment its a experience of wow this is so amazing, beyond words concept and thought analysis,
  • In next moment thought would come there is no being to get enlightened, there is anatta, and what would buddha mean by he being really enlightened
  • Does enlightened get psychic powers using which they can show others, how can he go back to community, who always consider having something materialistic as value to tell them nothing is much much better

All these questions would have come to buddha. People accept others for something when they see the difference for themselves, how can you should this to someone. Oh what suffering buddha would have to declare himself as enlightened and prove it to others

Where do Enlightened ones exist?
Enlightened ones neither exist in any realms nor not exist as both perspectives here refer to existence and question itself is wrong. Thats what is said
this be comprehended like: Consider a dark meteor, the enlightened ones clean this meteor from defilements, orient it in certain direction and let is fall, free fall. This creates a brilliant radiance lighting up the sky which can be seen across galaxies, which eventually gets smaller and smaller and light goes stronger and more radiant till eventually it disappears, there is nothing left anymore to burn or exist which can be seen by the eyes, we call it shooting star, perfect example for enlightenment.

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The Sutta Pitaka classifies the four levels according to the levels’ attainments. In the Sthaviravada and Theravada traditions, which teach that progress in understanding comes all at once, and that ‘insight’ (abhisamaya) does not come ‘gradually’ (successively – anapurva)," this classification is further elaborated, with each of the four levels described as a path to be attained suddenly, followed by the realisation of the fruit of the path.

According to the Theravada exegesis, the process of becoming an Arahat is therefore characterized by four distinct and sudden changes, although in the sutras it says that the path has a gradual development, with gnosis only after a long stretch, just as the ocean has a gradual shelf, a gradual inclination with a sudden drop only after a long stretch. The Mahasanghika had the doctrine of ekaksana-citt, "according to which a Buddha knows everything in a single thought-instant.

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Yes I agree with you, though one distinction here is there should be difference between buddha and arhant. Buddha’s are only few, they have 32 marks on the body and they are destined to be buddhas or a Chakravarty samrat(wheel turning monarch) , lot mentioned here DN26

He had the following seven treasures: the wheel, the elephant, the horse, the jewel, the woman, the treasurer, and the counselor as the seventh treasure. He had over a thousand sons who were valiant and heroic, crushing the armies of his enemies. After conquering this land girt by sea, he reigned by principle, without rod or sword.

Arhant doesn’t have to struggle like Buddha or can they as they are capable of enlightenment but not fighting with world over it or convincing the world, its for buddha’s to arrise and make their life easier

Still enlightenment process remains kind of similar for both

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Once the the four stage system of noble disciples has been recognized then the progressive severing of the fetters comes into perspective anchoring it in reality:

"In the same way, there are these gross impurities in a monk intent on heightened mind: misconduct in body, speech, & mind. These the monk — aware & able by nature — abandons, dispels, wipes out of existence. When he is rid of them, there remain in him the moderate impurities: thoughts of sensuality, ill will, & harmfulness. These he abandons, dispels, wipes out of existence. When he is rid of them there remain in him the fine impurities: thoughts of his caste, thoughts of his home district, thoughts related to not wanting to be despised. These he abandons, dispels, wipes out of existence.

“When he is rid of them, there remain only thoughts of the Dhamma. His concentration is neither calm nor refined, it has not yet attained serenity or unity, and is kept in place by the fabrication of forceful restraint. But there comes a time when his mind grows steady inwardly, settles down, grows unified & concentrated. His concentration is calm & refined, has attained serenity & unity, and is no longer kept in place by the fabrication of forceful restraint.”—AN 3.100 i-x


So this looks like a gradual process which makes sense

Not sure where I see someone mentioned few times that after 7 days of enlightenment if someone doesn’t develop Brahma viharas to 100% the body breaks up

Trying to understand how everything fits together

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Ignore the details and step on the major stepping stones which are repeated often in the suttas. The main components of the dhamma interact dynamically to result in experience. That is what should be aimed for.

“let him grow in equanimity with mind composed,
check his scruples, how he inclines to doubt.”—Sn 4.16

For example Metta should be put in perspective as a lesser path than insight:

"And the Blessed One said to the monks, “Monks, Sariputta — when there was still more to be done, having established Dhanañjanin the brahman in the inferior Brahma world — has gotten up from his seat and left.”—MN97