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The Forty Distinctive Qualities of the Buddhas

From Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia
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Various lists of Distinctive Qualities of Buddha exist with the list of 18 unique distinctions being most often cited.

Nagarjuna lists these 40 in The Discourse on the Ten Stages (S. Dasabhumika Vibhasa Sastra). They are:

  • The Greatness of Compassion
  • The Eighteen Unique Distinctions
  • The Ten Spiritual Powers
  • The Three Spheres of Remembrance
  • The Four Kinds of Fearlessness
  • The Four Unhindered Powers of Expression


Greatness of Compassion

The 18 Unique Distinctions: The 10 Spiritual Powers
1 Flawlessness of the body

2 Flawlessness of the mouth
3 Flawlessness of memory
4 Flawlessness of impartiality
5 Flawlessness of serenity
6 Flawlessness of self-sacrifice
7 Unceasing desire to save
8 Unflagging zeal to save
9 Unfailing thought to save
10 Wisdom in saving
11 Powers of deliverance
12 Principles in it
13 Wisdom in deed
14 Wisdom in word
15 Wisdom in thought
16 Knowledge of past
17 Knowledge of present
18 Knowledge of future

1 Knowledge of what is right & wrong in every situation

2 Knowledge of the karma of every living being in the past, present & future
3 Knowledge of all stages of meditation & samadhi
4 Knowledge of the spiritual powers and capacities of all living beings
5 Knowledge of the desires and moral natures of all living beings
6 Knowledge of the spiritual conditions of all living beings
7 Knowledge of the consequences of all teachings & practices
8 Knowledge of the causes of mortality and reality of good & evil in all living beings
9 Knowledge of the end of all living beings & nirvana
10 Knowledge of the destruction of all illusions

The Three Sphere of Remembrance:
Whether living beings believe, don’t believe, or believe only partly, the Buddha neither rejoices or grieves but remains steadfastly mindful
The Fourfold Fearlessness: The Four Unhindered Powers of Expression
1 In the wisdom of all

2 In perfection of character
3 In facing the obstacles on the path
4 In ending suffering

1 In the Teaching

2 In the Meaning or Significance
3 In the Terms or Words
4 In Eloquence

Source

tientai.net