Althought as most not desired existence sometimes quoted, there seems to be less information about the cause why one gains the existence of an "not-perceiving-being", Unconscious beings (asaññasatta). [explained as "only body 'no' mind" often]

What is the cause, what is the required tendency to gain a asaññasatta-existence, state? Which kind of training should one go after to gain this long lasting state (which causes one to become a "fortuitous-arising-ists" (DN1), or a materialist, when falling from there)

Maybe some experts or googlyanika (those living dependency of teacher google) here are willing to elaborate about the being and coming into being of such beings.

(Note: this is not given for trade, exchange, stacks or entertaining, but as a tiny emergency-question for a timely exit from this wheel nourishing on delusion)

2 Answers 2


SN 23.2 defines "a being" ("satta") as strong clinging to one or more of the five aggregates. One the meanings of the word "satta" is "clinging". To cling requires a mind. Therefore, it appears there can be no such thing as an unconscious "being".

In my search, I only found the term asaññasattā in AN 9.24 plus the DN and, in the sequence of the teaching, appears related to the 4th jhana. The 4th jhana is obviously not "unconscious". It follows it appears the term "asaññasattā" needs to be examined carefully, for what it really means. The impression is "asaññasattā" means not having any salient perception because the mind only has equanimity as its object. It appears "asaññasattā" does not mean "unconscious".

Regardless, these types of teachings found in the Anguttara Nikaya & Digha Nikaya are often suspicious and, imo, best ignored.


According to the chapter "The Higher Jhanas" by Bhikkhu Henepola Gunaratana:

Corresponding to the fourth (material) jhana there are seven realms: the Realm of Great Reward, the Realm of Non-percipient Beings, and the five Pure Abodes. With this jhana the rebirth pattern deviates from the former one. It seems that all beings who practice the fourth jhana of the mundane level without reaching any supramundane attainment are reborn in the realm of Great Reward. There is no differentiation by way of inferior, moderate or superior grades of development. The Realm of Non-percipient Beings is reached by those who, after attaining the fourth jhana, then use the power of their meditation to take rebirth with only material bodies; they do not acquire consciousness again until they pass away from this realm. The five Pure Abodes are open only to non-returners (anagamis), noble disciples at the penultimate stage of liberation who have eradicated the fetters binding them to the sense-sphere and thence automatically take rebirth in higher realms, where they attain arahatship and reach final deliverance.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .