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Abhibhū

1. Abhibhū.– Chief disciple of Sikhī Buddha (D.ii.9; J.i.41; Bu.xxi.20). In the Aruṇavatī Sutta it is said that he went with Sikhī to a Brahma-world and, at the Buddha’s request, taught a discourse to the accompaniment of great psychic powers. He proved that by using just such speech as if he were teaching a gathering of monks, he could, standing in the Brahma-world, make his voice heard by its thousand realms (S.i.154 f). The verses spoken on this occasion are, in the Theragāthā, ascribed to Abhibhūta (v.1147‑8).

In the Aṅguttaranikāya (i.226 f; AA.i.436 f ) we find Ānanda asking the Buddha how far Abhibhū’s powers bore relation to those of a Buddha, and the Buddha replying that Abhibhū was a mere disciple, and proceeding to describe the immeasurable powers of the Tathāgata.

Abhibhū was a brahmin because we find him so addressed in the Aruṇavatī Sutta referred to above, but in the Buddhavaṃsa Commentary (p.202) he is spoken of as a rājaputta.

In the Paṭisambhidhāmagga Commentary (488 f ) his story is given as an example of vikubbana-iddhi whereby a person could make himself seen in many places at the same time. We are told that he developed the blue meditation device (nīla-kasina), to attract to himself the attention of the world systems.

The Thera Adhopupphiya had been a hermit in Himavā during the time of Sikhī Buddha and had offered flowers to Abhibhū. Ap.i.128‑9.

2. Abhibhū.– A class of devas belonging to the formless plane (M.i.1). They live in the same plane as the Vehapphalā. In the Mūlapariyāya Sutta the word is used to denote all the Asaññasattādevā. Buddhaghosa explains the word by saying “Abhibhavī ti Abhibhū; kiṃ abhibhavī ti? Cattāro khandhe, arūpino.” They are beautiful and long-lived, and are therefore considered to be eternal and identical with Brahmā (MA.i.30). In the Brahmanimantanika Sutta (M.i.329) the Buddha claims to be Abhibhū (= the conqueror).

3. Abhibhū.– The name of a Bodhisatta who obtained the sure prediction (vivarana) under Gotama. He will become the sixth Buddha after Gotama. Anāgatavaṃsa, p.37.

1. Abhibhū Sutta.– On the immeasurableness of a Buddha’s powers. A.i.226 f; also called the Sīhanāda Sutta in the Commentary.

2. Abhibhū Sutta.– On the eight stages or stations of mastery over the senses (abhibhāyaphanāni) (A.iv.305 f).

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