Pali Term: Bhava

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Assaji
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Pali Term: Bhava

Post by Assaji » Fri Aug 19, 2016 3:06 pm

Hello Pāli friends,

Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi writes:
"Bhava, in MLDB, was translated “being.” In seeking an alternative, I had first experimented with “becoming,” but when the shortcomings in this choice were pointed out to me I decided to return to “existence,” used in my earlier translations. Bhava, however, is not “existence” in the sense of the most universal ontological category, that which is shared by everything from the dishes in the kitchen sink to the numbers in a mathematical equation. Existence in the latter sense is covered by the verb atthi and the abstract noun atthitā. Bhava is concrete sentient existence in one of the three realms of existence posited by Buddhist cosmology, a span of life beginning with conception and ending in death. In the formula of dependent origination it is understood to mean both (i) the active side of life that produces rebirth into a particular mode of sentient existence, in other words rebirth-producing kamma; and (ii) the mode of sentient existence that results from such activity."

http://www.wisdompubs.org/book/connecte ... troduction
"Unfortunately, atthita and bhava both had to be rendered by "existence," which obscures the fact that in Pali they are derived from different roots. While atthita is the notion of existence in the abstract, bhava is concrete individual existence in one or another of the three realms. For the sake of marking the difference, bhava might have been rendered "being," but this English word is too likely to suggest "Being," the absolute object of philosophical speculation. It does not sufficiently convey the sense of concreteness intrinsic to bhava."

http://www.abhidhamma.org/KaccanagottaSutta.htm#_edn2
A good and clear example of 'bhava' as a countable span of life can be found in Ratana sutta:
232. Ye ariyasaccāni vibhāvayanti
Gambhīrapaññena sudesitāni
Kiñcāpi te honti bhusappamattā
Na te bhavaṃ aṭṭhamaṃ ādiyanti,
Idampi saṅghe ratanaṃ paṇītaṃ
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu.


Those who have seen clearly the noble truths
well-taught by the one of deep discernment —
regardless of what [later] might make them heedless —
will come to no eighth state of becoming.[2]
This, too, is an exquisite treasure in the Sangha.
By this truth may there be well-being.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
Metta, Dmytro

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Assaji
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by Assaji » Fri Aug 19, 2016 3:09 pm

Ven. Thanissaro Bhikkhu writes:

"The Buddha had a word for this experience of an identity inhabiting a world defined around a specific desire. He called it bhava, which is related to the verb bhavati, to “be,” or to “become.” He was especially interested in bhava as process — how it comes about, and how it can be ended. So “becoming” is probably a better English rendering for the term than “being” or “existence,” especially as it follows on doing, rather than existing as a prior metaphysical absolute or ground. In other words, it’s not the source from which we come; it’s something produced by the activity of our minds.

...

In his first sermon, the Buddha begins his definition of the cause of stress and suffering with the phrase, “the craving that leads to renewed bhava.” He ends his description of t he fruits of his Awakening with the realization, “There is now no renewed bhava.” These two statements show clearly that the concept of bhava is central to an understanding of suffering, its cause, and its cessation. And as we will see, it also plays a crucial role in the path to the cessation of stress and suffering. This means that it is central to all four of the four noble truths — truths lying at the heart of the Buddha’s teaching as a whole. Yet the Buddha never gives an essential definition of what the word bhava means, so an understanding has to be pieced together from the way he uses it in his teachings.

Any Pāli dictionary will show that bhava is related to the verb bhavati, which means to ”be” or to ”become.” This is why bhava is often translated as “being” or “becoming.” But to see what kind of being or becoming is meant by the word, we have to look at it in context.

Bhava is included in a variety of lists describing mental states that an arahant — a fully awakened person — has overcome. Thus it is one of the three asavas, or effluents; one of the four oghas, or floods; one of the four yogas, or burdens; and one of the seven anusayas, or obsessions. Although it does not occur in the standard list of ten sanyojanas, or fetters, a standard formula describ ing the arahant states that he/she has “destroyed the fetter of becoming.” Although these lists clearly indicate that bhava is regarded as something negative that has to be overcome for the sake of Awakening, they give no idea of what the term actually means.

For that, we have to look at a passage describing bhava in action. And the primary teaching supplying this context is dependent co-arising, the Buddha’s most complete description of the factors leading to suffering and stress (see Appendix I). There, bhava is conditioned by craving and clinging; it acts as a condition for birth, which is followed by aging, illness, and death.

Two points stand out here. First, bhava is not “Being” in the sense of a primary metaphysical absolute. Instead, it is part of an on - going, dynamic process, something produced repeatedly in a complex network of cause and effect — what Sn III.12 calls the “stream” of bhava. It’s a type of being that follows on doing, a doing in anticipation of what will become. For this reason, in choosing an English equivalent for bhava, “becoming” seems more appropriate than “being,” in that it better captures bhava’s conditioned, purposeful, dynamic nature.

Second, becoming acts as a transition point between two contexts in the stream of conditions leading to suffering. It is conditioned by such purely psychological factors as craving and clinging, and yet it provides the locus for processes that occur both on the psychological and cosmological level: birth, aging, illness, and death."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... coming.pdf

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Assaji
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by Assaji » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:09 am

Since life spans can occur on three planes, bhava can be of three kinds:
Katamo ca bhikkhave, bhavo? Tayome bhikkhave, bhavā: kāmabhavo, rūpabhavo, arūpabhavo. Ayaṃ vuccati bhikkhave, bhavo.

"And what is becoming? These three are becomings: sensual becoming, form becoming, & formless becoming. This is called becoming.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
These three kinds of bhava are explained in more detail in two Bhava suttas:
Iti kho ānanda, kammaṃ khettaṃ, viññāṇaṃ bījaṃ, taṇhā sineho. Avijjānīvaraṇānaṃ sattānaṃ taṇhāsaṃyojanānaṃ paṇītāya dhātuyā viññāṇaṃ patiṭṭhitaṃ. Evaṃ āyati punabbhavābhinibbatti hoti. Evaṃ kho ānanda, bhavo hotī'ti.

"Thus kamma is the field, consciousness the seed, and craving the moisture. The consciousness of living beings hindered by ignorance & fettered by craving is established in/tuned to a refined property. Thus there is the production of renewed becoming in the future. This is how there is becoming."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
Bhikkhu Bodhi provides a translation of the Commentary:
Spk: In the exposition of existence, sense-sphere existence is both kamma-exisitence [kamma-bhava] and rebirth-existence [upapatti-bhava]. Of these, kamma-existence is just kamma that leads to sense-sphere existence; for the kamma, being the cause for rebirth-existence in that real, is spoken of as "existence" by assigning the name for the result to the cause. Rebirth existence is the set of five kammically acquired aggregates produced by that kamma; for this is called "existence" in the sense that "it comes to be there." The same method of explanation applies to form-sphere and formless-sphere existence (except that in formless-sphere rebirth-existence only the four mental aggregates exist).
This classification of bhava into kamma-bhava and upapatti-bhava is given in Vibhanga:
356. Tattha katamo upādānapaccayā bhavo: bhavo duvidhena atthi kammabhavo atthi upapatibhavo

Tattha katamo kammabhavo: puññābhisaṅkhāro apuññābhisaṅkhāro āneñjābhisaṅkhāro, ayaṃ vuccati kammabhavo. Sabbampi bhavagāmikammaṃ kammabhāvo.

Tattha katamo upapattibhavo: kāmabhavo rūpabhavo arūpabhavo saññābhavo asaññābhavo nevasaññānāsaññā bhavo eka vokakārabhavo catuvokārabhavo pañcavokārabhavo, ayaṃ vuccati uppattibhavo. Ayaṃ vuccati upādānappaccayā bhavo.


Vibhanga 137
Ven. Nyanatiloka explains in his Buddhist Dictionary:
(9.) "Through clinging is conditioned the process of becoming" (upādāna-paccayā bhavo), i.e. the wholesome and unwholesome active karma-process of becoming (kamma-bhava), as well as the karma-resultant (vipāka) passive process, the so-called 'rebirth-process' (upapatti-bhava). The karma-process (kammabhava) comprises the 5 karmical causes: ignorance, karma-formations, craving, clinging, karma-process (s. 1, 2, 8, 9, 10, of the diagram); the rebirth-process (upapatti-bhava) comprises the 5 karma-results (s. 3-7 of the diagram).

The karma-process is here, correctly speaking, a collective name for generative karmic volition (kamma-cetanā) and all the mental phenomena associated therewith, whilst the 2nd link (karma-formations) designates only karmic volition (s. āyūhana). Both, however, i.e. the 2nd and 10th proposition, practically state one and the same thing, namely, that karma is the cause of rebirth, as we shall see under 10.

Clinging (upādāna) may be an inducement of decisive support (upanissaya) to many kinds of wholesome and unwholesome karma. Sensuous clinging (kāmūpādāna), i.e. clinging to sensuous objects, for example, may be a direct inducement to murder, theft, unlawful intercourse with the other sex, evil words and thoughts, etc. Clinging to rules and ritual (sīlabbatūpādāna) may lead to self-complacency, fanaticism, cruelty, etc. Clinging is also for the evil karma associated therewith, a condition by way of co-nascence, association, etc.

(10.) "Through the process of becoming is conditioned rebirth" (bhava-paccayā jāti), i.e. through the wholesome and unwholesome karma-process (kamma-bhava) is conditioned the rebirth-process (upapatti-bhava). The 2nd and 10th propositions, as already pointed out, practically teach one and the same thing, namely, that karma is the cause of rebirth; in other words, that the karmical volition (cetanā) is the seed out of which springs the new life, just as from the mango-seed is generated the new mango-tree.

http://www.palikanon.com/english/wtb/n_ ... ppaada.htm
I will try to put it succinctly.

Bhava has an active part - kamma-bhava - ignorance (avijja), volition (saṅkhāra), craving (taṇhā), appropriation (upādāna), action (kamma), and a passive part - upapatti-bhava - consciousness (viññāṇa), name-and-form (nāma-rūpa), six sense spheres (āyatanā), contact (phassa), sensation/feeling (vedanā). The active part of current life span (bhava) conditions the passive part of next life span (bhava).

SarathW
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by SarathW » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:37 am

Good question.
The best answer I found was in the following video. (counter 25)
I like to see your comments on that.

http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 52#p392564


What do you think about the Bhavanga (Atita and kalana) in Abhidhamma, seventeen thought moment analysis?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Assaji
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by Assaji » Thu Aug 25, 2016 10:54 am

SarathW wrote:The best answer I found was in the following video. (counter 25)
I like to see your comments on that.

http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 52#p392564
Thank you for a video. This reminds me of Ven. Thanissaro's teachings.
The interrelation of bhava with other links of Conditioned Arising is a large topic, which I would rather discuss in other threads.
SarathW wrote:What do you think about the Bhavanga (Atita and kalana) in Abhidhamma, seventeen thought moment analysis?
Bhavaṅga in its early meaning is explained in relation to bhava in Nettippakaraṇa. Each link of Conditioned Arising is called there bhavaṅga:
Imāni bhavaṅgāni yadā samaggāni nibbattāni bhavanti so bhavo, taṃ saṃsārassa padaṭṭhānaṃ.
Niyyānikalakkhaṇo maggo, so nirodhassa padaṭṭhānaṃ.


When these factors of being (existence)1 are (exist) [by their] having occurrence in harmony, [then] that [is] being (existence); that [is] the footing for the roundabout [of rebirths].
The Path has the characteristic of giving outlet; it is the footing for cessation.

(translation by Ven. Nyanamoli)
Ven. Nyanamoli notes:
165/1 'Bhavanga—factor of being': NettiA says 'Bhavangāni means either "factors of being" or "factors called being". Of these, the defilements are "factors of being" and the round of action's ripening is the "factors called being". "Harmony" means all of this' (p. 70). The term is very frequently used by Acariya Buddhaghosa and others to explain the continuity of cognizance. While they have taken this term from the Paṭṭhāna, which is the only place where it occurs in the Tipitaka (though without explanation— Ptn. 159, 160, 169, 324), no Pitaka commentary offers any explanation of it. It's meaning here is not quite the same, perhaps, and seems to be the more simple one that each item (from 'ignorance' down as far as 'assumption') in the formula of Dependent Arising is to be considered as a 'factor of being' (itself a member of the formula).
In later texts, bhavaṅga evidently lost immediate connection with bhava.

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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by Polar Bear » Thu Aug 25, 2016 4:32 pm

I can't say I have anything of my own to add but here is an interesting lecture on bhava given by Peter Harvey at the Oxford Center for Buddhist Studies:

"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

SarathW
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by SarathW » Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:41 am

Bhante Punnaji says Bhava means being not becoming!(counter 30)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BT149c7YspA
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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cjmacie
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by cjmacie » Tue Aug 30, 2016 11:15 pm

SarathW wrote:Bhante Punnaji says Bhava means being not becoming!(counter 30)
Is this person / teacher being mentioned here (and elsewhere) as a curiosity or as authority?

Looking up information on the name finds a lot of youtube talks, and a self-promo site (http://www.awakeninsightretreats.org/bhante-punnji.html)

The opening from there:
"All the forms of Buddhism present in the modern world are cultural modifications and not exactly what the Buddha taught. You are about to discover the original teachings of the Buddha" We have done a research to discover the original teaching of the Buddha."

And website http://protobuddhism.com/ is a lot of fun -- i.e. pure advertising.

Why is this person/teachings being brought up in this forum?

SarathW
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by SarathW » Tue Aug 30, 2016 11:24 pm

Why is this person/teachings being brought up in this forum?
Well he is another Buddhist monk.
Why do you think that we should not discuss his opinions?
By the way I am not approving or disapproving when I quote other teachers.
I have my own opinion (views) too!
:)
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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cjmacie
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by cjmacie » Wed Aug 31, 2016 11:29 am

I'd had the impression, from somewhere, that "bhava" was past-participle from "bhavati", and hence I understood it as "having become", i.e. by extension "is", "exists" now, but by virtue of conditioning. I though it might have been from Thanissaro, but that passage I had in mind is quoted above, and he doesn't specify the relationship to "bhavati".

Maybe I made it all up. But it would have made good sense. ;)

btw: good thread!

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Assaji
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by Assaji » Wed Aug 31, 2016 2:05 pm

Hello,
cjmacie wrote:I'd had the impression, from somewhere, that "bhava" was past-participle from "bhavati"
Past participle from 'bhavati' would be 'bhūta'. It's also an interesting word:

http://dsalsrv02.uchicago.edu/cgi-bin/p ... :3646.pali

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cjmacie
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Re: Pali Term: Bhava

Post by cjmacie » Fri Sep 02, 2016 10:55 am

Dmytro wrote:Hello,
cjmacie wrote:I'd had the impression, from somewhere, that "bhava" was past-participle from "bhavati"
Past participle from 'bhavati' would be 'bhūta'. It's also an interesting word:

http://dsalsrv02.uchicago.edu/cgi-bin/p ... :3646.pali
Yes, thanks, that's the connect lurking in my s/t muddled memory – as in the also eternally debatable "yathābhūta" ("things as they really are").
cjmacie wrote: ... "having become", i.e. by extension "is", "exists" now, but by virtue of conditioning....
Yathābhūta to my mind making more sense as implying that what's appearing at the moment is implicated in paticcasamuppāda.

(maybe OFF-TOPIC?)

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