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by Micha F. Lindemans
"Departed one." Pretas are beings whose karma is too good for rebirth in the hells (naraka) and too bad for rebirth as an asura. According to traditional view, greed, envy, and jealously can lead to rebirth as a preta. They suffer the torment of hunger because their bellies are immense while their mouths as small as the eye of a needle. Besides hunger, they are subjects to various other torments.

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  • Etymology:
    Departed one

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