Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Discussion of Abhidhamma and related Commentaries

Moderator: Mahavihara moderator

User avatar
sma
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:30 am
Location: China

Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by sma » Fri May 18, 2018 1:24 pm

Conceit (māna): Conceit has the characteristic of haughtiness.
Its function is self-exaltation. It is manifested as vainglory. Its proximate
cause is greed dissociated from views. It should be regarded as
madness.
---A Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma page 84
It seems to me that when a Christian thinks he is better than a Buddhist, it is because he thinks that the Buddhists believe in superstition, in this case, his conceit is based on his wrong view.
Why is it stated in Abhidhamma that these two cannot arise together?
Could someone enlighten me on this? :?:

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 4230
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Rubber Forest, Phrao, Chiangmai

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by Dhammanando » Fri May 18, 2018 2:29 pm

The answer to the question in the thread title can be found in the next chapter of the Manual:
Wrong view, conceit: Both of these factors are found only in cittas rooted in greed, for they involve some degree of holding to the five aggregates. However, the two exhibit contrary qualities, and thus they cannot coexist in the same citta. Wrong view occurs in the mode of misapprehending, i.e. interpreting things in a manner contrary to actuality; conceit occurs in the mode of self-evaluation, i.e. of taking oneself to be superior, equal or inferior to others.

Whereas wrong view is necessarily present in the four cittas rooted in greed accompanied by wrong view, conceit is not a necessary concomitant of the four greed-rooted cittas dissociated from wrong view. Conceit does not arise apart from these cittas, but these cittas can arise without conceit.

An additional reason is that when wrong view is present, then the proximate cause of conceit is absent, the latter being diṭṭhivippayutta-lobha, greed dissociated from wrong view.

As for the example you give, the Abhidhamma doesn't deny that conceit and wrong view may sometimes arise in close temporal propinquity, nor that there may be causal relations between one and the other. All that's denied is the possibility of their simultaneous presence in one and the same citta.

User avatar
sma
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:30 am
Location: China

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by sma » Fri May 18, 2018 3:32 pm

The proximate cause of conceit is greed dissociated from wrong view.
All that's denied is the possibility of their simultaneous presence in one and the same citta.
Thank you, Bhante.
I am still quite confused about the proximate cause of conceit——greed dissociated from wrong view.
Where does this proximate cause come from? Are there any reasonal arguments for this conclusion?
I just can't see the incompatibility of these two unwholesome mental factors.
Why is it impossible for them to arise in the same citta?
Can you elaborate more?
Thank you!

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 4230
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Rubber Forest, Phrao, Chiangmai

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by Dhammanando » Fri May 18, 2018 4:26 pm

sma wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 3:32 pm
I am still quite confused about the proximate cause of conceit——greed dissociated from wrong view.
Where does this proximate cause come from?
Each conditioned dhamma arises due to multiple causes. The most momentous of any dhamma's causes is called its padaṭṭhāna, usually translated "proximate cause". In the case of conceit, the most momentous cause is greed or attachment (lobha). But not every occurrence of lobha is a cause of conceit. Some occurrences cannot be because they are accompanied by wrong view; other occurrences might be because wrong view is absent, but they happen not to be because other factors for the arising of conceit are absent (e.g., the previous cognitive processes were not occupied with a comparison of oneself with another); and yet other occurrences of lobha both might be and are.
sma wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 3:32 pm
I just can't see the incompatibility of these two unwholesome mental factors. Why is it impossible for them to arise in the same citta?
It will be better if you ask again after finishing the second chapter, for then you'll have a better graps of the general characteristics of cittas and cetasikas.

User avatar
sma
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:30 am
Location: China

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by sma » Fri May 18, 2018 4:33 pm

Thank you, Bhante.
:anjali:

SarathW
Posts: 10504
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by SarathW » Fri May 18, 2018 11:48 pm

:goodpost:
Please continue the discussion with your findings.
Link to CMA
file:///C:/Users/Sarath/Downloads/Comprehensive%20Manual%20of%20Abhidhamma%20(3).pdf
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

SarathW
Posts: 10504
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by SarathW » Fri May 18, 2018 11:58 pm

**False view (di.t.thi) is seeing things in a distorted way. There are several kinds of false views:
the view of a truly existent self (sakkaaya di.t.thi);
eternalism (sassata di.t.thi) or nihilism (uccheda di.t.thi);
the view denying the efficacy or fruits of kamma (natthi di.t.thi), causality (ahetuka di.t.thi), and the moral law (ahiriya di.t.thi).

**Conceit (maana) is self-evaluation which arises from comparing oneself with another as better, equal or inferior.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/aut ... el322.html
==============
The mind can occupy only one Citta at a time.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
sma
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:30 am
Location: China

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by sma » Sat May 19, 2018 2:04 am

SarathW wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 11:48 pm
:goodpost:
Please continue the discussion with your findings.
I joined a Chinese Abhidhamma Study Group where people discuss their problems once a week.
Last night we discussed this and ended up with no results.
Our question is why the proximate cause of conceit needs to be dissociated from wrong view.
This seems to be not self-evident to us and the book does not provide a convincing argumentation.

SarathW
Posts: 10504
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by SarathW » Sat May 19, 2018 3:06 am

Last night we discussed this and ended up with no results.
Perhaps you will find an answer if you find what two consciousness can arise together.
Can you find an answer to this question?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

paul
Posts: 1353
Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 11:27 pm
Location: Vietnam

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by paul » Sat May 19, 2018 3:13 am

sma wrote:
Sat May 19, 2018 2:04 am
Our question is why the proximate cause of conceit needs to be dissociated from wrong view.
Conceit is one of the five higher fetters which tie to the fine-material and immaterial worlds, and is a remnant of identity view, which is eliminated at stream entry. The stream- enterer is destined to full enlightenment, so has right view, but some of the subtle expressions of the fetters remain to be removed. So the cause of conceit cannot stem from wrong view.

It's a common mistake for practitioners to go to the Abhidhamma before throughly studying dhamma, wrongly thinking it contains some secret when it's only an elaboration.
Last edited by paul on Sat May 19, 2018 3:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

SarathW
Posts: 10504
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by SarathW » Sat May 19, 2018 3:33 am

So the cause of conceit cannot stem from wrong view.
Are you saying that people with the wrong view do not have conceit?
Or
Conceit and right view can't arise together?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
sma
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:30 am
Location: China

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by sma » Sat May 19, 2018 8:44 am

SarathW wrote:
Sat May 19, 2018 3:06 am
Perhaps you will find an answer if you find what two consciousness can arise together.
Can you find an answer to this question?
Two cittas cannot arise together, this is self-evident to me.
Here is the simile: each citta is compared to every static movie frame, they cannot overlap. So two cittas cannot arise together.
As for the factors of each citta, some of them can arise together. For example, wrong view can arise together with pīti and restlessness If wong view can arise with pīti and restlesssness, why can't it arise together with conceit?
In my opinion, wrong view can/should arise with all of the unwholesome mental factors, why not?
If there are no wrong views, how can unwholesome mental factors arise?

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 4230
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Rubber Forest, Phrao, Chiangmai

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by Dhammanando » Sat May 19, 2018 9:43 am

sma wrote:
Sat May 19, 2018 8:44 am
If wrong view can arise with pīti and restlessness, why can't it arise together with conceit?
To revert to your earlier example, suppose a Christian thinks to herself: "(1) Christians will go to heaven for ever; (2) Buddhists will go to hell for ever; (3) Going to heaven is better than going to hell; (4) Therefore it's better to be a Christian than a Buddhist; (5) I'm a Christian; (6) Therefore I'm better than I would be if I were a Buddhist; (7) And if I'm better than I would be if I were a Buddhist, then I must be better than anyone who is in fact a Buddhist."

Some of these thoughts are reflections based on wrong view, while others are reflections involving conceited comparison of oneself with another. Isn't it self-evident that the Christian can't be doing the two things at the same time? In any moment when she is occupied with thinking about the implications of Christian eschatology, then she's not occupied with comparing herself with another. In any moment when she's occupied with comparing herself with another, then she's not occupied with thinking about Christian eschatology.

User avatar
sma
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:30 am
Location: China

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by sma » Sat May 19, 2018 10:10 am

Dhammanando wrote:
Sat May 19, 2018 9:43 am
Some of these thoughts are reflections based on wrong view, while others are reflections involving conceited comparison of oneself with another. Isn't it self-evident that the Christian can't be doing the two things at the same time? In any moment when she is occupied with thinking about the implications of Christian eschatology, then she's not occupied with comparing herself with another. In any moment when she's occupied with comparing herself with another, then she's not occupied with thinking about Christian eschatology.
Your explanation makes sense.
**False view (di.t.thi) is seeing things in a distorted way. There are several kinds of false views:
the view of a truly existent self (sakkaaya di.t.thi);
But according to the definition of "wrong view", when she's occupied with comparing herslef with another, she is seeing things in a distorted way (i.e., accompanied by wrong view). Am I correct? :?:
In any moment when she's occupied with comparing herself with another, then she's not occupied with thinking about Christian eschatology.
According to the same logic, mental factors can only arise one after another too.
Saññā and cetanā are also different mental activities, how can they arise together?
And also, how can vittaka and vicāra arise together?......
How can some mental factors arise together while others can not? What makes the difference?
It seems that Abhidhamma does not make a clear demarcation here.

santa100
Posts: 3189
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2011 10:55 pm

Re: Why can't conceit and wrong view arise together?

Post by santa100 » Sat May 19, 2018 7:51 pm

sma wrote:But according to the definition of "wrong view", when she's occupied with comparing herslef with another, she is seeing things in a distorted way (i.e., accompanied by wrong view). Am I correct?
But if one citta is separated from another not by seconds, but milliseconds, microseconds, or even nanoseconds, then it doesn't matter that wrong view and conceit have to arise together simultaneously on the same nanosecond, does it? They could very well occur sequentially due to the reason explained in CMA pg. 95-96 and our primitive and unmindful brain would still interpret them to arise simultaneously. Anywho, there're only 2 ways to verify all this: 1. Create scientific measurement instruments accurate enough down to the micro/nanosecond level AND accurately detect the shifting of one citta after another; OR 2. Practice meditation long and hard enough to elevate the mind to a whole new level of sharpness and brightness so that it can clearly see each passing citta for itself.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests