- J -
'regenerative karma'; s. karma.
'old age, decay', is one of the 3 divine messengers (s.
deva-dúta, q.v.). For its conditioning by birth, s. paticcasamuppáda
'birth', comprises the entire embryonic process beginning
with conception and ending with parturition.
birth of beings belonging to this or that order of beings, their
being born, their conception (okkanti) and springing
into existence, the manifestation of the groups (corporeality,
feeling, perception, mental formations, consciousness; s.
khandha), the acquiring of their sensitive organs: this
is called birth" (D. 22). For its conditioning by the prenatal
karma-process (kamma-bhava; s. bhava), s. paticcasamuppáda
(9, 10), patisandhi.
(fr. javati, to impel): 'impulsion', is the phase
of full cognition in the cognitive series, or perceptual process
(citta-víthi; s. viññána-kicca) occurring at its
climax, if the respective object is large or distinct. It is
at this phase that karma is produced, i.e. wholesome or unwholesome
volition concerning the perception that was the object of the
previous stages of the respective process of consciousness.
There are normally 7 impulsive moments. In mundane consciousness
(lokiya, q.v.), any of the 17 karmically wholesome classes
of consciousness (Tab. I, 1-17) or of the 12 unwholesome ones
(Tab. I, 22-23) may arise at the phase of impulsion. For the
Arahat, however, impulsion has no longer a karmic, i.e. rebirth-producing
character, but is a karmically independent function (kiriya,
q.v.; Tab. I, 72-89). There are further 8 supermundane classes
of impulsion (Tab. I, 18-21, 66-69).
4 impulsive moments immediately before entering an absorption
(jhána, q.v.) or one of the supermundane paths (magga;
s. ariyapuggala) are: the preparatory (parikamma),
approach (upacára), adaptation (anuloma), and
maturity-moment (gotrabhú, q.v.) In connection with entering
the earth-kasina absorption (s. kasina), they are explained
as follows, in Vis.M. IV: "After the breaking off of the
subconscious stream of being (bhavanga-sota, q.v.), there
arises the 'advertence at the mind-door' (manodvárávajjana,
s. viññánakicca), taking as object the earthkasina
(whilst thinking), 'Earth! Earth!' Thereupon, 4 or 5 impulsive
moments flash forth, amongst which the last one (maturity-moment)
belongs to the fine-material sphere (rúpávacara), whereas
the rest belong to the sense-sphere (kámávacara; s. avacara),
though the last one is more powerful in thought conception,
discursive thinking, interest (rapture), joy and concentration
(cf. jhána) than the states of consciousness belonging
to the sense-sphere. They are called 'preparatory' (parikamma-samádhi),
as they are preparing for the attainment-concentration (appaná-samádhi);
'approaching' (upacára-samádhi), as they are close
to the attainment-concentration and are moving in its neighbourhood;
'adaptive' (anuloma), as they adapt themselves to the
preceding preparatory states and to the succeeding attainment
concentration. The last one of the four is called 'matured'
(gotrabhú). In a similar way, the impulsive moments before reaching
the divine ear are described in Vis.M. XIII, 1. - Cf. Karma
The 3: ti-ratana (q.v.).
'absorption' (meditation) refers chiefly to the four meditative
absorptions of the fine-material sphere (rúpa-jjhána or
rúpávacara-jjhána; s. avacara). They are achieved
through the attainment of full (or attainment -, or ecstatic)
concentration (appaná, s. samádhi), during which
there is a complete, though temporary, suspension of fivefold
sense-activity and of the 5 hindrances (s. nívarana).
The state of consciousness, however, is one of full alertness
and lucidity. This high degree of concentration is generally
developed by the practice of one of the 40 subjects of tranquillity
meditation (samatha-kammatthána; s. bhávaná).
Often also the 4 immaterial spheres (arúpáyatana) are
called absorptions of the immaterial sphere (arúpa-jjhána
or arúpávacara-jjhána). The stereotype text, often
met with in the Suttas, runs as follows:
"Detached from sensual objects, o monks, detached from
unwholesome consciousness, attached with thought-conception
(vitakka) and discursive thinking (vicára), born of detachment
(vivekaja) and filled with rapture (píti) and joy
(sukha) he enters the first absorption.
"After the subsiding of thought-conception and discursive
thinking, and by gaining inner tranquillity and oneness of mind,
he enters into a state free from thought-conception and discursive
thinking, the second absorption, which is born of concentration
(samádhi), and filled with rapture (píti) and joy
"After the fading away of rapture he dwells in equanimity,
mindful, clearly conscious; and he experiences in his person
that feeling of which the Noble Ones say, 'Happy lives the man
of equanimity and attentive mind'; thus he enters the 3rd absorption.
"After having given up pleasure and pain, and through the
disappearance of previous joy and grief, he enters into a state
beyond pleasure and pain, into the 4th absorption, which is
purified by equanimity (upekkhá) and mindfulness.
"Through the total overcoming of the perceptions of matter,
however, and through the vanishing of sense-reactions and the
non-attention to the perceptions of variety, with the idea,
'Boundless is space', he reaches the sphere of boundless space
(ákásánañcáyatana) and abides therein.
'perceptions of matter' (rúpa-saññá) are meant the absorptions
of the fine-material sphere, as well as those objects themselves
. . . " (Vis.M. X, 1).
'perceptions of sense-reactions' (patigha-saññá) are
meant those perceptions that have arisen due to the impact of
sense-organs (eye, etc.) and the sense-objects (visible objects,
etc.). They are a name for the perception of visible objects,
as it is said (Jhána-Vibh . ): 'What are here the perceptions
of sense-reactions? They are the perceptions of visible objects,
sounds, etc.' - Surely, they do no longer exist even for one
who has entered the 1st absorption, etc., for at such a time
the five-sense consciousness is no longer functioning. Nevertheless,
this is to be understood as having been said in praise of this
immaterial absorption, in order to incite the striving for it"
(Vis.M. X, 16).
of variety (ñánatta-saññá) are the perceptions that arise
in various fields, or the various perceptions" (ib.). Hereby,
according to Vis.M. X, 20, are meant the multiform perceptions
outside the absorptions.]
"Through the total overcoming of the sphere of boundless
space, and with the idea 'Boundless is consciousness', he reaches
the sphere of boundless consciousness (viññánañcáyatana)
and abides therein.
"Through the total overcoming of the sphere of boundless
consciousness, and with the idea 'Nothing is there', he reaches
the sphere of nothingness (ákiñcaññáyatana) and abides
"Through the total overcoming of the sphere of nothingness
he reaches the sphere of neither-perception-nor-non-perception
(nevasaññá-n'asaññáyatana) and abides therein."
the 1st absorption is free from 5 things (i.e. the hindrances,
nívarana, q.v.), and 5 things are present (i.e. the factors
of absorption; jhánanga). Whenever the monk enters the
1st absorption, there have vanished sensuous desire, ill-will,
sloth and torpor, restlessness and scruples, doubts; and there
are present: thought-conception (vitakka), discursive
thinking (vicára) rapture (píti), joy (sukha),
and concentration (samádhi). In the 2nd absorption
there are present: rapture, joy and concentration; in the 3rd:
joy and concentration; in the 4th: equanimity (upekkhá) and
concentration" (Vis.M. IV).
4 absorptions of the immaterial sphere (s. above 5-8) still
belong, properly speaking, to the 4th absorption as they possess
the same two constituents. The 4th fine-material absorption
is also the base or starting point (pádaka-jhána, q.v.)
for the attaining of the higher spiritual powers (abhiññá,
the Abhidhamma, generally a fivefold instead of a fourfold division
of the fine-material absorptions is used: the 2nd absorption
has still the constituent 'discursive thinking' (but without
thought-conception), while the 3rd, 4th and 5th correspond to
the 2nd, 3rd and 4th, respectively, of the fourfold division
(s. Tab. I, 9- 13) . This fivefold division is based on sutta
texts like A . VIII, 63 .
the 8 absorptions as objects for the development of insight
(vipassaná), see samatha-vipassaná. - Full details
in Vis.M. IV-X.
in its widest sense (e.g. as one of the 24 conditions; s. paccaya
17), denotes any, even momentary or weak absorption of mind,
when directed on a single object.
'constituents (or factors) of absorption'; s. prec.
is one of the 24 conditions (paccaya, q.v.).
life, vital principle, individual soul. 'Soul (life) and
body are identical' and 'Soul and body are different', these
two frequently quoted wrong views fall under the 2 kinds of
personality-belief (sakkáya-ditthi; s. ditthi),
i.e. the first one under the annihilation-belief (uccheda-ditthi)
and the second under the eternity-belief (sassata-ditthi).
if one holds the view that the soul (life) is identical with
the body, in that case a holy life is not possible; or if one
holds the view that the soul (life) is something quite different,
also in that case a holy life is impossible. Both these extremes
the Perfect One has avoided and shown the Middle Doctrine, which
says: 'On ignorance depend the karma-formations, on the karma-formations
depends consciousness', etc." (S. XII. 35).
and jívitindriya: 'Life, vitality', may be either
physical (rúpa-jívitindriya) or mental (náma-jívitindriya).
The latter is one of the mental factors inseparably associated
with all consciousness; cf. náma, cetaná, phassa.
ninefold vital group; s. rúpa-kalápa.
somanassa (q.v.). - Altruistic j. = muditá