Location of the Mind?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
chownah
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by chownah » Mon Feb 10, 2014 3:11 am

People who hold the view that the external world exists independently of experience often wonder where the mind is located. People who do not hold the view that the external world exists independently rarely wonder where the mind is located.....questioning where the mind is does not occur to one who does not hold the view of an external world existing independently.
chownah

SarathW
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by SarathW » Mon Feb 10, 2014 4:15 am

Hi Chownah and M
I see your point.
But why Buddha did bother to teach them?
:shrug:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

MidGe
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by MidGe » Mon Feb 10, 2014 7:07 am

From "The Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma", Bikkhu Bodhi, general editor (pg 144, Ch III Guide to para 20):
Heart-base (hadayavatthu): According to the Pali commentators, the heart serves as the physical support for all cittas other than the two sets of fivefold sense consciousness, which take their respective sensitivities as their bases. In the canonical Abhidhamma the heart-base is not expressly mentioned. The Paṭṭhāna, the last book of the Abhidhamma Pitaka, simply speaks of “that matter in dependence on which the mind element and mind-consciousness element occur” (i,4). The Commentaries, however, subsequently specify “that matter” to be the heart-base, a cavity situated within the physical heart.


Hope this helps.

suttametta
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by suttametta » Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:44 pm

I stand uncorrected! The plot thickens... :jawdrop:

thelotuseffect
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by thelotuseffect » Mon Feb 10, 2014 10:56 pm

Mind is immaterial and without location, like a rainbow. If a rainbow has a location why can you not touch it, or even see it when you look at it closely. You cannot see the origin of mind from the viewpoint of mind itself. If by mind you mean consciousness then consciousness is like a beam of light able to reveal things without touching them.

While there is dependence on physical matter for consciousness, you can still hear silence, taste the tasteless, feel neutral body sensation, smell nothing, see your own blindness (if you're blind), etc... This is because mind is immaterial and is able to be directed at will.

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convivium
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by convivium » Tue Feb 11, 2014 12:26 am

Mind and matter are dependent on each other. Asking for the location of mind is tantamount to asking "Where is everything?" There is no where you can point away from it and imo the question makes no sense.
"Very well then, Kotthita my friend, I will give you an analogy; for there are cases where it is through the use of an analogy that intelligent people can understand the meaning of what is being said. It is as if two sheaves of reeds were to stand leaning against one another. In the same way, from name-&-form as a requisite condition comes consciousness, from consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form. From name & form as a requisite condition come the six sense media. From the six sense media as a requisite condition comes contact. From contact as a requisite condition comes feeling. From feeling as a requisite condition comes craving. From craving as a requisite condition comes clinging/sustenance. From clinging/sustenance as a requisite condition comes becoming. From becoming as a requisite condition comes birth. From birth as a requisite condition, then aging & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair come into play. Such is the origination of this entire mass of suffering & stress.

so name and form conditions CS and CS conditions name and form. i wonder exactly what this entails or amounts to.

in the transcendental dependent origination formulation i've read ignorance precedes everything or is the forerunner of at least sentient experience (not sure if there exists observer-independent ontologically objective phenomena on this view i.e. would a universe continue to exist if all sentient life disappeared for any period of time?)
Just keep breathing in and out like this. Don't be interested in anything else. It doesn't matter even if someone is standing on their head with their ass in the air. Don't pay it any attention. Just stay with the in-breath and the out-breath. Concentrate your awareness on the breath. Just keep doing it. http://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Just_Do_It_1_2.php

MidGe
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by MidGe » Tue Feb 11, 2014 4:09 am

in the transcendental dependent origination formulation i've read ignorance precedes everything or is the forerunner of at least sentient experience (not sure if there exists observer-independent ontologically objective phenomena on this view i.e. would a universe continue to exist if all sentient life disappeared for any period of time?)
Dependent origination is beginning-less. You can think of it as a wheel. Ignorance is not an absolute beginning point to dependent origination, it is, however, the cause of suffering that can be eliminated and hence stop the running around the wheel.

SarathW
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by SarathW » Tue Feb 11, 2014 4:29 am

would a universe continue to exist if all sentient life disappeared for any period of time?

=========
Human beings at the beginning of one world cycle are
of spontaneous birth. They don't have to get into the mother's
womb because they are the first human beings there. When
human beings appear in the world for the first time, they are
born spontaneously. It is like they fall down from the world of
Brahmas or something like that. It is said that at the
beginning there was no difference of sex. They were just
human beings. Sex-decad can be deficient for those human
beings who are born at the beginning of a world cycle by
spontaneous birth. Only later did sex and other differences
occur. In the beginning ages of the world cycle there were no
men or women, just human beings.
Page 365:
http://buddhispano.net/sites/default/fi ... ies-II.pdf
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

alan
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by alan » Tue Feb 11, 2014 6:28 am

Ben is on the right track here.

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convivium
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by convivium » Sat Feb 15, 2014 12:16 am

there has be some sort of over CS or higher CS to make sense of rebirth determined by karma.
Just keep breathing in and out like this. Don't be interested in anything else. It doesn't matter even if someone is standing on their head with their ass in the air. Don't pay it any attention. Just stay with the in-breath and the out-breath. Concentrate your awareness on the breath. Just keep doing it. http://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Just_Do_It_1_2.php

alan
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by alan » Sat Feb 15, 2014 5:42 am

And why would you say that?
Nothing in the teachings validates that opinion.

Dinsdale
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by Dinsdale » Sat Feb 15, 2014 11:13 am

m0rl0ck wrote:Well if you want to create transcendental mind-realms you are certainly free to do that, but this is the only universe you have to do it in and afaik in every buddhist tradition:
The suttas describe formless realms, so I don't understand your statement.

And don't forget the 6th and 7th fetters:
6. lust for material existence, lust for material rebirth (rūparāgo)
7. lust for immaterial existence, lust for rebirth in a formless realm (arūparāgo)
Last edited by Dinsdale on Sat Feb 15, 2014 11:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

Dinsdale
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by Dinsdale » Sat Feb 15, 2014 11:17 am

convivium wrote:So consciousness is localized in the brain according to the suttas?
I'm not atall sure that it is, but I'd have to check. My own experience is that it feels like the mind is localised in the brain, but I strongly suspect that's just because 4 of 5 sense organs are in the head, ie close to the brain - the eyes being particularly significant.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

chownah
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by chownah » Sat Feb 15, 2014 12:33 pm

Spiny Norman wrote:
convivium wrote:So consciousness is localized in the brain according to the suttas?
I'm not atall sure that it is, but I'd have to check. My own experience is that it feels like the mind is localised in the brain, but I strongly suspect that's just because 4 of 5 sense organs are in the head, ie close to the brain - the eyes being particularly significant.
Actually the retina and the optic nerve are parts of the brain......light striking the retina is actually light striking the brain directly.
chownah
P.S. The central nervous system is made up of the brain, spinal cord, optic nerve, and olfactory nerve if I remember correctly...maybe there is another nerve in there too, I forget. Anyway all of the parts of the central nervous system are continuous with the other structurally and the distinction between the parts of the central nervous system is mostly arbitrary and was formulated before the details of the structure and embryonic development were known. Now scientists know that embryonic development and the structure of the central nervous system indicates that all of the above mentioned parts are more realistically seen as one continuous unit with many areas of specialization. So.....the antiquated way of thinking about the central nervous system would not include the retina and optic nerve with the brain but this was arbitrarily decided and is no longer supported by current knowledge of the structure and embryonic development of the central nervous system.
chownah

Babadhari
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Re: Location of the Mind?

Post by Babadhari » Sat Feb 15, 2014 5:47 pm


And what is it, friends, is the method of becoming high that when developed and made much of results in knowing and seeing?[6]
Here, friends a beggar focuses his mind on the perception of light. Fixing on the perception of day, as by day, so by night, as by night so by day. Thus he unblindfolds the heart and reveals a mind of surpassing brilliance.
This, friends, is that method of becoming high that when developed and made much of results in knowing and seeing.
DN33

http://obo.genaud.net/dhamma-vinaya/bd/ ... lds.bd.htm

Are their alternative translations of the Sangiti Sutta available?
is the perception off light mentioned here the light of a purified and concentrated mind?
is this passage referring to 'knowing with the heart' and 'seeing with the mind? :juggling: '
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28

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