Dhammas beyond experience?

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Re: Dhammas beyond experience?

Postby Rasko » Thu May 16, 2013 5:45 pm

SamKR wrote:My question is: when there is no such direct experience of rapid arising and falling away, how can it be be said that cittas are in reality arising and passing away with such rapidity?
Isn't the currently ongoing actual experience (whatever it is -- whether changing very slowly or rapidly) the only reality of the moment? How can there be any "real" experience that exists beyond experience?
Isn't the assumption that "in the background there always are rapidly arising and falling dhammas with such rapidity" just a false assumption without the actual base of direct experience?

I just started watching these Abhidhamma lectures by Prof. Karunadasa recorded at the International Buddhist College (IBC):
http://korat.ibc.ac.th/multimedia/karunadasa

Some quotes (video/sound quality, my english and understanding of philosophy aren't that great, so there might be mistakes):

video 2:
one way to look at the development of the buddhist thought:
1) hinayana abhidharma systematization: realism
2) madhyamaka: emptiness
3) yogacara: idealism

"if we say that the five kinds of objects exist, that is realism, whether we experience them or not"
"abhidhamma recognizes the reality of the external world, therefore abhidhamma is realism"

"abhidhamma says dhammas are real"
"madhyamaka says dhammas are not real, they are empty"
"according to yogacara only mind is real, we call it idealism"

video 5:
"early buddhism is more empirical, abhidhamma is more rational"
"abhidhamma is an attempt to explain what the buddha taught within a rationalist framework"

"when early buddhism says things are impermanent you can observe impermanence"
"in the abhidhamma such characteristics as impermanence, suffering, they are applied not to things, but to the dhammas, the ultimate elements into which the world is analyzed, we can not see them"
"can be realized only at the level of high meditation"
"according to abhidhamma, dhammas are impermanent, but we can't observe that, it's based on rationalism"

So abhidhamma is rational realism? The existence of "dhammas beyond experience" is usually inferred, but there's a chance that abhidhamma is based on the experiences of advanced meditators? Or something like that?
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Re: Dhammas beyond experience?

Postby Alex123 » Thu May 16, 2013 6:24 pm

Commenterial Abhidhamma, or at least how it is interpreted in some circles seems to reject conceptual, whole objects such as: trees, rocks, etc.

The only "realism" is that they posit that there are objectively existing dhammas (rūpa-s) and that all 4 "paramattha" dhammas are "real".
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Re: Dhammas beyond experience?

Postby 5heaps » Fri May 17, 2013 4:50 am

SamKR wrote:My question is: when there is no such direct experience of rapid arising and falling away, how can it be be said that cittas are in reality arising and passing away with such rapidity?
Isn't the currently ongoing actual experience (whatever it is -- whether changing very slowly or rapidly) the only reality of the moment? How can there be any "real" experience that exists beyond experience?

because theres a difference between a consciousness and the mental factor of ascertainment. an object can create an image in the mind but this does not necessarily mean it can is ascertained. there are very many subtle physical and mental things that constantly appear in our mind which are not ascertained. it is not a contradiction to say that 1 moment of experience has extremely many parts yet none of them are ordinarily ascertainable. another example is if you are reading something on the screen and someone talks, an ear consciousness is produced however there is no ascertainment or extremely little ie. just enough to say 'yes someone said something' but not enough at all to know what was said
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Re: Dhammas beyond experience?

Postby SamKR » Fri May 31, 2013 9:06 pm

5heaps wrote:because theres a difference between a consciousness and the mental factor of ascertainment. an object can create an image in the mind but this does not necessarily mean it can is ascertained. there are very many subtle physical and mental things that constantly appear in our mind which are not ascertained. it is not a contradiction to say that 1 moment of experience has extremely many parts yet none of them are ordinarily ascertainable.

But whatever appears is what is present; presence of appearance is consciousness, and whatever is present is just what should be ascertained. Whatever does not appear is not present, is not conjoined with consciousness, and can not be ascertained. Conversely, whatever thing is not ascertained is not present, and there no presence or consciousness of that thing.

Assumption of the presence of a thing that is actually non-present or non-ascertainable may result into lapsed-mindfulness (sati muṭṭhā) of something actually present that is to be ascertained as it actually is.

(edited after thinking about the meaning of ascertainment you might have intended)
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