Purvanivasa, Pūrvanivāsa: 4 definitions


Purvanivasa means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

[«previous next»] — Purvanivasa in Mahayana glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra

Pūrvanivāsa (पूर्वनिवास) or Pūrvanivāsajñānabala refers to one of the “ten powers” (daśabala) of the Bodhisattva, according to the 2nd century Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra chapter 39. Accordingly, “by the power of the knowledge of previous abodes (pūrvanivāsa-jñānabala), he distinguishes and evaluates the earlier comings and goings of beings”.

Accordingly, “by using this knowledge (vidyā), for himself as well as for other people, the Buddha knows the former abodes occupied (pūrvanivāsa) during innumerable and infinite generations as well as the many causes and conditions from which they derive. The Buddha knows this fully and completely, and as this knowledge is intact (avyāhata) and invincible (ajeya) in him, it is called the ‘eighth power’”.

Source: academia.edu: A Study and Translation of the Gaganagañjaparipṛcchā

Pūrvanivāsa (पूर्वनिवास) refers to “(the knowledge of the) former lives”, according to the Gaganagañjaparipṛcchā: the eighth chapter of the Mahāsaṃnipāta (a collection of Mahāyāna Buddhist Sūtras).—Accordingly, “How then, son of good family, does the Bodhisattva perform his practice of a Bodhisattva (bodhisattvacaryā) after having obtained the sameness of extinction? The extinction is the pacification of all vices, the allaying of every feeling, the pacification of all objects, and no connection with the parts of personality, realms or fields of perception. Thus the good man, having obtained the sameness of extinction, playfully employs the great compassion, means and insight, and knowledge of the former lives (pūrvanivāsa). He is sustained by the presence of the Buddhas. He cultivates insight and knowledge. [...]”.

Mahayana book cover
context information

Mahayana (महायान, mahāyāna) is a major branch of Buddhism focusing on the path of a Bodhisattva (spiritual aspirants/ enlightened beings). Extant literature is vast and primarely composed in the Sanskrit language. There are many sūtras of which some of the earliest are the various Prajñāpāramitā sūtras.

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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit dictionary

[«previous next»] — Purvanivasa in Sanskrit glossary
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Edgerton Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Dictionary

Pūrvanivāsa (पूर्वनिवास).—m., = pūrve-ni°, usually with forms or derivs. of anusmarati (as in Pali with anussarati): Mahāvastu i.160.3 (°saṃ vetti, one of 10 bala); 228.16; 229.5; 319.3; ii.132.15; 284.7, 8; iii.67.6; 321.9; Mahāvyutpatti 229 (see nidāna 1); Divyāvadāna 619.8 ff.; Bhikṣuṇī-karmavācanā 27a.5; °sānusmṛti, one of the abhijñā, q.v.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Pūrvanivāsa (पूर्वनिवास):—[=pūrva-nivāsa] [from pūrva] m. ‘former habitation’, a former existence, [Divyāvadāna]

context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family (even English!). Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.

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