When Buddha was born, he walked seven steps and then stopped without stepping the eighth step, and at every step there was a shower of rain. I ask: what does the seven steps symbolize?
According to Mahāpadānasutta, when he was born he stood firm on both feet, then with his face to the north took seven strides while a white canopy was held over him. There is no mention of a shower at every step though.
According to Mahāpadānasutta commentary, standing firm on both feet is a portend for achieving the four iddhipada (Intention, Effort, Consciousness, Investigation). Facing north is a sign that he'll rise above others, the seven steps he walked is a portend that he'll achieve the seven factors of enlightenment (satta bojjhaṅgā) and finally the white canopy held over his head is a symbol that he'll achieve nirvana.
Number seven is very important number. Music has seven fundamental notes (vibrations), Light too has seven fundamental colors (rainbow colors), so does a human. In yogic tradition enlightenment is about opening up seven Chakras. Therefore human evolution is a seven step journey in yogic traditions of India. Buddha was born in India/Nepal steeped in spiritual/yogic traditions. Walking seven steps is a metaphor which implies enlightenment (Nirvana) as the destiny of the boy.
simple meanings of buddha's seven steps:
- unhappy and painful realm/ hell/narka ko samsara
- hungry and thirsty realm /small mouth if foods and water available /pret ko samsara
- animal's realm /fearful life/dar ra trass ko samsara
- angry and quarreling realm/ ris ra jhagada ko samsara
- normal human realm/nuetral/sadharan manab ko samsara
- exit to the heaven realm/heaven/sworga ko bato samsara
- bodhisattwa's realm/ heaven/ buddha ko samsara
protected by Andrei Volkov♦ May 2 at 16:21
Thank you for your interest in this question.
Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).
Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?