Concept

Abhijñā

Summary
Abhijñā (अभिज्ञा; Pali pronunciation: abhiññā; མངོན་ཤེས mngon shes; ) is a Buddhist term generally translated as "direct knowledge", "higher knowledge" or "supernormal knowledge." In Buddhism, such special knowledge is obtained through virtuous living and meditation. The attainment of the four jhanas, or meditative absorptions, are considered a prerequisite for their attainment. In terms of specifically enumerated knowledges, these include mundane extra-sensory abilities (such as seeing past lives and various supranormal powers like levitation) as well as the supramundane, meaning the extinction of all mental intoxicants (āsava). Pali literature In Pali literature, abhiññā refers to both the direct apprehension of dhamma (translated below as "states" and "qualities") as well as to specialized super-normal capabilities. Direct knowing of dhamma In SN 45.159, the Buddha describes "higher knowledge" (abhiññā) as
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