Sometime i read that the current mara is a bodhisatta. It seems hard to believe a bodhisatta can be reborn as mara, who oftens damage buddhism.

There are two types of bodhisatta, the comfirmed one by a Buddha which will surely become a Buddha, and the not comfirmed yet, maybe mara is the later who can still return to normal being.

So, can a bodhisatta, comfirmed or not, reborn as mara?

  • 1
    Please provide a link to where you've read this.
    – user13375
    Commented Mar 24, 2020 at 17:03

2 Answers 2


Bodhisatta was under the influence of Mara. However, he defeated Mara when realising Nibbana. (ie. Defeating ten Mara)

  • In this version of the story of Ksitigarbha -- Kisah Niat Suci Utama Ksitigarbha Bodhisatva -- it says that,

    At that time that demon king is now Bodhisattva Ts'ai Shou.

  • I think that Yama is seen as a Dharma protector -- Eight Dharmapalas: The Protectors of Buddhism.

  • I think that some people or schools see Mara as beneficial, intending to test (and thus refine) people's attainments or progress on the path. Here is one example of that -- Yama and Mara:

    Mara, the tempter who is also called the Evil One, has the job of testing living beings to make sure they are progressing on the path. He and his demon followers are emanations of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas who test those engaged in self-cultivation. He appears in the texts both as a real being (i.e. as a deity who is the King of Demons of the Paranirmita Heaven, the sixth and highest heaven in the desire realm) and as a symbol of everything that hinders the arising of wholesome roots and progress on the path of enlightenment. This includes the internal difficulties encountered by the practitioner. There are four kinds known as the Four Maras: 1) skandha-mara or incorrect view of self; 2) klesha-mara or being overpowered by negative emotions; 3) matyu-mara or death that interrupts the spiritual practice; and 4) devaputra-mara or becoming stuck in the bliss that comes from meditation.

    Seeing these fearsome beings as bodhisattvas who are really responsible for helping us on our evolutionary path puts the so called “devil” in a very different light.

This doesn't directly answer your question, but perhaps the question was based on a misunderstanding ("a bodhisatta can be reborn as mara, who oftens damage buddhism").

  • "Lord Yama’s job is to make sure beings receive the appropriate karmic retribution in the appropriate hell realm." --> from that link. I think this is entirely wrong and dangerous and do not accept this in any way as Buddha Dharma. I'd be shocked if my Tibetan Buddhist teachers in any way endorsed this.
    – user13375
    Commented Mar 25, 2020 at 15:01

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