What are bodily fabrications?

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What are bodily fabrications?

Postby SarathW » Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:47 pm

I am reading the following two Suttas and need some clarification
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"But what are bodily fabrications? What are verbal fabrications? What are mental fabrications?"
"In-and-out breaths are bodily fabrications. Directed thought and evaluation are verbal fabrications. Perceptions and feelings are mental fabrications."

http://buddhasutra.com/files/cula_vedalla_sutta.htm
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"In the case of the one who is dead, who has completed his time, his bodily fabrications have ceased & subsided, his verbal fabrications ... his mental fabrications have ceased & subsided, his vitality is exhausted, his heat subsided, & his faculties are scattered. But in the case of a monk who has attained the cessation of perception & feeling, his bodily fabrications have ceased & subsided, his verbal fabrications ... his mental fabrications have ceased & subsided, his vitality is not exhausted, his heat has not subsided, & his faculties are exceptionally clear. This is the difference between one who is dead, who has completed his time, and a monk who has attained the cessation of perception & feeling."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

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My questions.
- Why only “in and out breaths” are bodily fabrication. What about walking, sitting, heartbeat, digression etc.?
- Does Arahant cease breathing?
SarathW
 
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Re: What are bodily fabrications?

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Apr 19, 2013 5:31 am

SarathW wrote:Why only “in and out breaths” are bodily fabrication. What about walking, sitting, heartbeat, digression etc.?
Does Arahant cease breathing?

The same passage is translated here.

IMO "bodily formations" in this context could also be applied to other bodily functions such as walking, blinking, chewing, etc.

The monk who attains cessation of perception and feeling (nirodha samāpatti) ceases breathing, as it says in that passage:
But in the case of a monk who has attained the cessation of perception & feeling, his bodily fabrications have ceased & subsided, his verbal fabrications ... his mental fabrications have ceased & subsided, his vitality is not exhausted, his heat has not subsided, & his faculties are exceptionally clear.

The Arahant doesn't remain in that state for more than 7 days. After exiting from that trance, mental formations arise first, then bodily formations, then verbal formations: “When a bhikkhu emerges from the cessation of perception and feeling, mental formations arise first, then bodily formations, then verbal formations.”

What is the Cessation of Perception and Feeling?

If you have any more questions on such deep matters, it would be best to go find a Non-returner or Arahant.
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Re: What are bodily fabrications?

Postby MidGe » Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:35 am

Saṅkhāra is a diificult word to translate from the Pali. I do not think that there is a concensus amongst translators. An other possible translation that I tend to favour as it seems to get rid of many difficulties with meaning in many (if not all) cases is "determinant", or, "something that other things are dependent on". It surely seems to fit this particular passage much better.
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Re: What are bodily fabrications?

Postby SarathW » Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:25 pm

Bhikkhu Pesala

Venerable sir. I am greatful you for providing the follwing link. Not only you answered my question, I found some answers to my previous questions as well.


http://www.aimwell.org/Books/Mahasi/Cul ... Formations



You said:


If you have any more questions on such deep matters, it would be best to go find a Non-returner or Arahant.

I heard:

If you can’t find an expert talk to some one who knows an expert!
:)
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