RELS 1506 Chapter Notes - Chapter 5: Buddhist Cosmology, Abhidharma, Rupajhana

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Foundations of Buddhism: The Buddhist Cosmos(Ch.5)
Of Space and Time: World Systems
Analysis of dukkha from 2 perspectives
o Psychological and cosmological
Asks 2 fundamental questions:
What are possible circumstances a being can be born, exist, and
die in?
What are possible states of mind?
Buddha refused to euerate ho log ee ee i sasara
o Also told a householder of a monk who wished to know where the 4 elements
ceased to exist
Through meditation the monk approaches gods of the 4 Kings
They couldt aser->sent him to higher gods who sent him
higher, etc.
o Eventually arrived at Great Brahma who confessed he
didt ko the aser ad the ok should ask the
Buddha
The Buddha eventually tells the monk that where
the 4 elements cease, is in the consciousness that
knows nirvana
Aiet tets tell us the uierse as hole oprises of orld-spheres
o Each have their own gods, its Mara and Brahma
Clusters of orld spheres a e ruled  higher Gods alled Great
Brahas
But wrong to conclude there is one overarching and final Great
Brahma-Creator God
No spatial limit to the extent of the world systems
The Great Brahmas of realm of Supreme Gods are beings in last
existence
o Certain of reaching nirvana at the end of their lives (16,000
aeons)
2 Great Abhidharma traditions
o Theraadis ad “arasatis
Cosmological differences are minute
Per Abhidharma tradition:
o 31 levels or realms of existence in samsara
Basic division of 3 realms is threefold
World of 5 senses (kama-dhatu -loka)
o Comprises of 11 realms
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