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Asava

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Asava
Āsava is a Pali term (Sanskrit: Āśrava) that is used in Buddhist scripture, philosophy, and psychology. The glossary of the Companion Encyclopedia of Asian Philosophy defines āsava/āśrava as:
inflow, influx, influence; mental bias or canker, cankers that keep one bound to the world of samsāra; used particularly in Jainism and Buddhism.
According to De Silva:
The āsavas which are mentioned frequently are kāmāsava, bhavāsava, diṭṭhāsava and avijjāsava. Horner translates these as the cankers of sense-pleasure, becoming, false views and ignorance. The word canker suggests something that corrodes or corrupts slowly. These figurative meanings perhaps describe facets of the concept of āsava: kept long in storage, oozing out, taint, corroding, etc.

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Rakefet Dictionary

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Asava
Asava (Sanskrit, Pali) [from the verbal root su to distill, make a decoction] A distilling or a decoction; a Buddhist term, difficult to render in European languages, signifying the distillation or decoction which the mind makes or produces from the impact upon it of outside energies or substances, whether these latter be thoughts or suggestions automatically arising and acting from outside upon us, or such as impinge upon the human consciousness from another consciousness striving to affect the former. Thus it corresponds in some respects to the Christian idea of temptation. Asava signifies attachments rising in the mind from the impact upon it of outside influences, and the ideas born of outside influences which intoxicate the mind, born in the mind or flowing into it and presenting its being held upon higher lines. Freedom from the asavas constitutes the essential of arhatship, which involves self-mastery in all its phases.
The four asavas are enumerated in Southern Buddhism as
1) sensuousness and sensuality (kama);
2) hunger for life (bhava);
3) dreamy speculation (dittha); and
4) nescience (avijja).



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