Saturday, April 25, 2009

The (mixed) Human Plane

The Human Plane is characterized by a lot of pleasure and very obvious suffering. This balance makes it ideal for gaining enlightenment and liberation.

Liberation (enlightenment) from the Wheel of Rebirth is said in general to be possible only from the Human Plane. It is the lowest world considered a "fortunate" destination.

Earth-bound fairies (bhummattha devas) co-exist in the Human Plane.

The Human Plane is marked by questioning and curiosity. It is also a Realm of Passion (kama-loka, which includes lower celestial worlds and unfortunate subterranean destinations); human beings (Sanskrit, manushyas; Pali, manussa) want to strive, consume, acquire, enjoy, explore.

Here the Dharma is openly available, yet only a few seek it. The rest become caught up in striving, consuming, and acquiring and thereby miss the remarkable opportunity they have by their fortunate rebirth there.
This plane features four "islands" (continents). Being live there, sometimes unaware of what beings are doing on the other islands. They are different in appearance and different in mind.
As hard as it is for some people to believe, and as impossible as it is for others not to believe, the Human Plane is shared with other beings, both seen (animals) and unseen. These unseen beings are numerous and include ogres (yakkhas), sylphs, mermaids, wood nymphs, fairies (bhummattha-devas in general), elves (kumbhandas), and dryads (rakshasas).
  • Listen to discussion of unseen beings in the human world and ways to see them by Graham Hancock (WQ).

It is visited by other beings as well, for example, "angels" (catu maha rajika devas) and contacted by brahmas (divinities), harmed by maras ("killers") and meddled with by titans (asuras) and nagas (dragons) and gandhabbas (sprites) as well as hungry ghosts (petas) and a variety of spirits whose diversity accords with their karma.

Human Plane depicted in the Wheel of Life (Maren Yumi/Flickr, Creative Commons)

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