sphairos wrote:Hey guyz,
You all know that L. Cousins has proposed a curious interpretations of the "Abhidhamma dhammas problem".
Well, perhaps all the other subscribers knew this, but I didn't.
In his writings on Buddhism and Abhidhamma he always presumes that Abhidhamma authors by the instant succession of the "momentarily" dhammas meant an almost opposite thing: that there is no discrete entities in space-time and in our mental/psychological processes in the first place -- there is only an ever-changing continuity, which renders it literally impossible to dissect that flow into atom-like, indivisible entities. It is obvious that this idea - in its form at least - is quite different from the Abhidhammic view. I have always wondered, how come L. Cousins never explicates this great presupposition. What do you think about that?
Could you specify where in his writings Cousins presents these views? In the only article by him in my possession (The Paṭṭhāna and the Development of the Theravādin Abhidhamma
JPTS,  22-46) Cousins speaks much like any other ābhidhammika, using 'process' when talking about the various vīthis
, and the stock (modern) simile of frames-in-a-movie when speaking of individual cittas
. I vaguely recall that in other writings he tends to depart from the widespread tendency of modern Abhidhamma writers who place a near-exclusive emphasis on the analytic side of the subject, while treating the synthetic side (i.e., conditional relations) as scarcely more than an afterthought. Cousins, as I recall, reverses this emphasis, but in doing so I can't recall his ever departing from the post-Anuruddha Theravādin consensus in any matter of substance.