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Avacara

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Avacara: Sphere, realm, level or dimension.

The 3 levels of existence are:

  1. The sense-level kāmāvacara,
  2. The fine-material level rūpāvacara,
  3. The formless level arūpāvacara

Which things are of the sense-level kāmāvacara? Whatever things exist within the interval bounded beneath by the Avīci hell and above by the paranimmitavasavatti heaven (see: deva), being therein included, to wit: the groups of existence, the elements, sources (see: khandha dhātu āyatana), form, feeling, perception, mental constructions and consciousness, all these things are of the sense-level. But which things are then of the fine material level rūpāvacara? Whatever things exist within the interval bounded beneath by the Brahma-world and above by the akanittha world (see: deva), having therein their level, and being therein included... and also consciousness and mental properties in one who has entered the fine-material absorptions, or who has been reborn at that level, or who already during his life-time is living in happiness of the absorptions, all these things are of the fine-material level. Which things are of the formless level arūpāvacara? Consciousness and mental properties arising within the interval bounded beneath by the beings reborn in the level of unbounded space and above by the beings reborn at the level of neither-perception-nor-non-perception (see: jhāna 5-8), and the consciousness and mental properties in one who has entered the formless absorptions, or who has been reborn at that level, or who already during his lifetime is living in happiness of the formless absorptions, all these things are of the formless level. Cf. Dhs. see: 1280, 1282, 1284; Vibh. XVIII. App.

References

Maha Thera Nyanatiloka. Manual of Buddhist Terms and Doctrines, Buddhist Publication Society, first edition 1952.

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