The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

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Nicolas
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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Nicolas » Thu Aug 16, 2018 12:16 pm

Viññāṇa can also be conflated with citta and mano, as in SN 12.61 & SN 12.62, so they are at least similar in meaning (if not identical):
Yañca kho etaṃ, bhikkhave, vuccati cittaṃ itipi, mano itipi, viññāṇaṃ itipi, tatrāssutavā puthujjano nālaṃ nibbindituṃ nālaṃ virajjituṃ nālaṃ vimuccituṃ.

But when it comes to that which is called ‘mind’ or ‘sentience’ or ‘consciousness’, an uneducated ordinary person is unable to become disillusioned, dispassionate, or freed. (Sujato)

But, bhikkhus, as to that which is called ‘mind’ and ‘mentality’ and ‘consciousness’ —the uninstructed worldling is unable to experience revulsion towards it, unable to become dispassionate towards it and be liberated from it. (Bodhi)

But as for what’s called ‘mind,’ ‘intellect,’ or ‘consciousness,’ the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person is unable to grow disenchanted with it, unable to grow dispassionate toward it, unable to gain release from it. (Ṭhānissaro)

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Lal » Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:13 pm

Thank you, Nicolas, for pointing out an excellent sutta for the discussion. I have translated the full Assutavā Sutta (SN 12.61), since it clarifies several points that I have been trying to make:

Thus I have heard. On one occasion the Buddha was dwelling at Savatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anathapiṇḍika’s Park.
“Bhikkhus, an uninstructed person might experience dissatisfaction towards this body composed of the four great elements; he might become dispassionate towards it and thus be liberated from it. For what reason? Because he can see the birth, growth, decline, and death of the body composed of the four great elements. Therefore, even an uninstructed person might experience dissatisfaction with this body composed of the four great elements; he might become dispassionate towards it and be liberated from it.

“But, bhikkhus, as to that which is called ‘citta’ and ‘mano’ and ‘vinnana’ —an uninstructed person is unable to experience dissatisfaction towards it, unable to become dispassionate about it and be liberated from it. For what reason? Because he thinks there is one mind: ‘This is mine, this I am, this is my self.’ Therefore, the uninstructed person is unable to experience dissatisfaction towards it, unable to become dispassionate about it and be liberated from it.

“It would be better, bhikkhus, for the uninstructed person to take this body composed of the four great elements to be him (or “self”) rather than the mind. For what reason? Because this body composed of the four great elements is seen standing for one year, for two years, for three, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, for a hundred years or even longer. But that which is called ‘citta’ and ‘mano’ and ‘vinnana’ arises as one thing and ceases as another (within a billionth of a second, but that is not mentioned in this sutta), just as a day arises and ends up as night.

Just as a monkey roaming through a forest grabs hold of one branch, let go of that, grabs another, then lets that go of that and grabs still another, those are different branches, even though they are all called a branch. So too is that which is called ‘citta’ and ‘mano’ and ‘vinnana’ because it arises as one thing and ceases as another (arises as citta and ends up as vinnana), just as day arises and ends as night).

“Therein, bhikkhus, the instructed Noble disciple attends closely and carefully to dependent origination itself thus: ‘When this exists in the mind, that comes to be; with the arising of this in the mind, that arises. When this does not exist in the mind, that does not come to be; with the cessation of this in the mind, that ceases. That is, with ignorance as condition, (abhi)sankhara come to be; with abhisankhara as condition, vinnana…. Such is the origin of this whole mass of suffering.

But with the remainder-less fading away and cessation of ignorance comes cessation of abhisankhara; with the cessation of abhisankhara, cessation of vinnana (NOT consciousness), with the cessation of vinnana, cessation of namarupa,…cessation of jara, marana, soka, parideva, dukkha, domanassa. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering.

“Seeing thus, bhikkhus, the instructed Noble disciple experiences dissatisfaction towards the body, dissatisfaction towards vedana, dissatisfaction towards sanna, dissatisfaction towards sankhara, dissatisfaction towards vinnana. Experiencing dissatisfaction, he becomes dispassionate and be released. Through dispassion his mind is liberated and he attains Nibbana. With that comes the knowledge “I am liberated”. He understands: ‘There is no more birth, the holy life has been lived, what had to be done has been done, there is nothing more to be done”.

That is the complete sutta. This can be compared with the full versions of the those three translations provided by Nicolas.
Main points to be contemplated:

1. The relatedness (and differences) between citta, mano, and vinnana. The smallest unit of cognition arises as a citta and is contaminated within its duration (in a billionth of a second) to mano and to vinnana. Actually, there are nine stages as I mentioned before. Mind is very complex.

2. A paticca samuppada cycle that ends up in jara, marana, soka, etc (i.e., suffering), ALWAYS has those preceding components: avijja, abhisankhara, vinnana, through bhava and jati.

3. An Arahant’s PS cycles will never have any of those. Of course he has consciousness, but that is not defiled vinnana. His/her citta do not get contaminated beyond the manasan stage, which means he/she can identify persons/objects around, but does not get attached to them.

4. It is thus clear with this suttas, why vinnana nirodha is Nibbana, and why vinnana is NOT consciousness; it is DEFILED consciousness.

5. It should also be clear why many current sutta translations (especially for deeper suttas) are incomplete at best and incorrect/misleading at worst. For example, one reading any of those translations would not get the above critical teachings embedded in the sutta. Actually, I cannot provide all the details in a posting like this. A deep sutta like this one is highly condensed; many details are omitted. This is why Dhammacakkappavatta Sutta was delivered by the Buddha to the five ascetics overnight, but is condensed to a few pages of text.

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by SarathW » Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:33 pm

(arises as citta and ends up as vinnana), just as day arises and ends as night).
I never heard before. Where is the Sutta support.
cessation of vinnana (NOT consciousness)
:thinking:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by mikenz66 » Fri Aug 17, 2018 2:12 am

Here's the Pali:
evameva kho, bhikkhave, yamidaṃ vuccati cittaṃ itipi, mano itipi, viññāṇaṃ itipi, taṃ rattiyā ca divasassa ca aññadeva uppajjati aññaṃ nirujjhati.
And some translations:
In the same way, that which is called ‘mind’ or ‘sentience’ or ‘consciousness’ arises as one thing and ceases as another all day and all night.
https://suttacentral.net/sn12.61/en/sujato#4
so too that which is called ‘mind’ and ‘mentality’ and ‘consciousness’ arises as one thing and ceases as another by day and by night.
https://suttacentral.net/sn12.61/en/bodhi#sc4
In the same way, what’s called ‘mind,’ ‘intellect,’ or ‘consciousness’ by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another.
https://www.dhammatalks.org/suttas/SN/SN12_61.html
Lal wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:13 pm
So too is that which is called ‘citta’ and ‘mano’ and ‘vinnana’ because it arises as one thing and ceases as another (arises as citta and ends up as vinnana), just as day arises and ends as night).

:heart:
Mike

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by SarathW » Fri Aug 17, 2018 2:55 am

arises as citta and ends up as vinnana
Thanks Mike
In my opinion the above is not correct.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by cappuccino » Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:15 am

In the same way, what’s called ‘mind,’ ‘intellect,’ or ‘consciousness’ by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another.
this refers to moods

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Lal » Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:43 am

It seems that all three of you have either not read what I wrote OR just are blinded by wrong views.

Instead of picking on a single sentence (which is done incorrectly too), it may make better sense if you try to understand the underlying message in the sutta. Please answer the following questions if you like to have a productive discussion. Otherwise, I am not going to respond. I have wasted enough time. I have stayed in the discussion because I could see at least some people seem to understand.

1. For example, what I am saying is that in the first part of the sutta, the message is: It is easier to see that it is unfruitful to take one's body as "self", because one can see it changing over the years. However, those who have not understood Buddha Dhamma think that one's mind does not change: "I have my mind". it is harder to see that one's mind changes at an unbelievably fast rate. People use "citta", "mano", and "vinnana" interchangeably, but those are related BUT yet DIFFERENT phases of cognition.

- So, my question is: What do you understand by those initial verses. Please write in your own words without quoting!

2. In the second part it is clear even from those other three translations, that avijja nirodha lead to (abhi)sankhara nirodha, to vinnana nirodha, which ends up as bhava nirodha, jati nirodha and finally "jara, marana, sika.. nirodha", i.e., future suffering will be stopped from arising.

Does't this mean one cannot end suffering until one gets rid of avijja, stop making abhisankhara , and thereby making vinnana (defiled consciousness)?
- So, for the tenth time, what do you mean by vinnana, if it is not "defiled consciousness"? PLEASE don't quote others.

3. It is not possible to understand paticca samuppada, if one does not know what nirodha is. I see that there is an ongoing discussion about that. I also see that there was a discussion on the same topic in 2012: "viewtopic.php?t=12113"

Nirodha comes from "nir" + "udā", i.e., "stopped from arising". It is that simple!
For example, a plant arises (comes into being) due to a seed. If the seed is destroyed (or stopped from forming), the plant will be "stopped from arising", i.e., there will be no plant.
In the same way, vinnana nirodha leads to stopping of kamma bija (or kamma beeja) from forming. That is the key to stopping future suffering as explained in paticca samuppada.

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Nicolas » Fri Aug 17, 2018 2:25 pm

Lal,

My understanding:

Vinnana is consciousness.

In paticcasamuppada, vinnana is a condition for feeling to arise, which is a condition for craving & clinging, which is a condition for dukkha. If there is no more birth, there is no more vinnana, no more dukkha. In the unawakened, vinnana (consciousness) might be "defiled"--though perhaps it's more accurate to say "subject to defilement(s)", subject to craving & clinging--but that happens to be the case and doesn't mean that "defiled" is part of the definition of vinnana.

The six senses are still operational when greed/aversion/delusion have been uprooted. This includes the six sense-vinnanas. Those are not defiled, for that mind is free from defilements. The aggregates are not dispersed when greed/aversion/delusion have been uprooted, the vinnana aggregate is still there. It is not defiled, for that mind is free from defilements. (Note that I am not saying "for the arahant", for there is no arahant "entity" (satta) to whom vinnana arises. Vinnana still arises and passes, but it is not owned or identified with by the arahant.)

"Vinnana is dukkha" is not the same as saying "vinnana is defiled", which is still not the same as "vinnana is defined as defiled consciousness". The first is correct (by virtue of vinnana being anicca and a condition for the arising of dukkha), the second can be considered mostly correct (i.e. most of the time for most people), and the third is, I think, incorrect.

The point of my previous post is that vinnana means "consciousness" (or "mind" etc.), similarly to mano and citta. Mano does not mean "defiled consciousness" and neither does citta. The mind (citta) is luminous but it is defiled by visiting defilements (upakkilesa) (Pabhassara Sutta, AN 1.49). If vinnana is defiled by definition, then it cannot be purified or liberated.

The Upaya Sutta (SN 22.53) indicates that vinnana can be freed (vimutta), steady (thita), content (santusita). This sounds like that kind of vinnana is not defiled.

Vinnana is called such because it cognizes (vijanati). It cognizes things like "sour, bitter, pungent, sweet, hot, mild, salty, and bland" (Khajjanīya Sutta, SN 22.79) and "pleasure, pain, neutral" (Mahāvedalla Sutta, MN 43). It cognizes, differentiates and discriminates, but is not necessarily defiled (the examples above don't imply defilement). MN 43 even speaks of wisdom (panna) and vinnana as conjoined, not separate (the former to be developed, the latter to be understood).

"(arises as citta and ends up as vinnana)" is not what the Assutavā Sutta implies. It simply says that citta/mano/vinnana changes (or that its/their instances arise & pass away).

I believe I am repeating what some others have said in this topic.

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Lal » Fri Aug 17, 2018 2:37 pm

Nicolas,
You said: "Vinnana is consciousness". AND

"If there is no more birth, there is no more vinnana,"

Do you not see the inconsistency?
Don't Arahants have consciousness? Didn't the Buddha have consciousness?

Of course, there will be no consciousness after the death of an Arahant. But happens in between the attainment of Arahanthood (or Buddhahood) and Parinibbana (death of the physical body)?

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Nicolas » Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:02 pm

I think "birth" refers to conventional birth (e.g. human birth, birth as a deva, etc.). "If there is no more birth, there is no more vinnana": I was referring to parinibbana.
If greed/aversion/delusion are uprooted, after the break-up of the body, the aggregates disperse, and vinnana finally ceases.
What happens before the break-up of the body is that vinnana is still there, undefiled.

If you look at the one-life model of paticcasamuppada instead of the three-life model, then vinnana ceases "for the arahant", because "for the arahant" ceases/doesn't apply. Vinnana is still there, but it is not owned by the arahant. "Owned by the arahant" doesn't even make sense. "Personhood" dissipates, "I am" dissipates, so there is no more vinnana "for the person", no more vinnana "for me", and in that sense, vinnana is extinguished (insofar as "I am" is extinguished), but in another sense vinnana is still there.

Can you answer me regarding the six-sense vinnanas and the vinnana aggregate? According to you, are those still present after the uprooting of the defilements but before the break-up of the body? If so, vinnana cannot be defined as "defiled consciousness".

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Lal » Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:34 pm

Nicolas asked: "Can you answer me regarding the six-sense vinnanas and the vinnana aggregate? According to you, are those still present after the uprooting of the defilements? If so, vinnana cannot be defined as "defiled consciousness"?

Vinnana are many different types. We sense the outside world with the six types of cakkhu, sota, ghana, jivha, kaya, and mano. Those are basically vipaka vinnana.

Then there are many types of kamma vinnana, each one responsible for different types of kamma vipaka that we experience. For example, vinnana responsible for rebirth is patisandhi vinnana. When the Buddha says, "vinnnana of a boy or girl descending to a womb" that is patisandhi vinnana.

But even the vipaka vinnana are defiled through this fast process of: "citta mano mānasaṃ hadayaṃ paṇḍaraṃ mano manāyatanaṃ manindriyaṃ viññāṇaṃ viññā­ṇak­khan­dho".

This is explained in the original commentary, Vibhangapakarana, that is included in the Tipitaka. Here is how cakkhu vinnana gets contaminated via those steps in a split second: "Tattha katamā cak­khu­viñ­ñā­ṇa­dhātu? Cakkhuñca paṭicca rūpe ca uppajjati cittaṃ mano mānasaṃ hadayaṃ paṇḍaraṃ mano manāyatanaṃ manindriyaṃ viññāṇaṃ viññā­ṇak­khan­dho tajjā­cak­khu­viñ­ñā­ṇa­dhātu—ayaṃ vuccati “cak­khu­viñ­ñā­ṇa­dhātu”.

It is at "2. Abhi­dham­ma­bhājanīya" section of "https://legacy.suttacentral.net/pi/vb3".

Of course, those descriptions are not in later commentaries like those by Buddhaghosa.

What happens in the case of an Arahant is that the fast contamination process stops at the manasan stage. At that stage, an Arahant can fully experience the outside world via the six types of vinnana. But he/she will not make any attachments.
- This is why in the Karaniyamatta Sutta it says: "manasanbhava ye aparimanam", i.e., "cultivate manasan to the highest", which means comprehend the real nature of this world. Therefore, an Arahant will experience the external world as it truly is, without one's own biases and prejudices.
- And of course, an Arahant will not have any patisandhi vinnana to bring in another birth.

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Nicolas » Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:39 pm

Lal wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:34 pm
Here is how cakkhu vinnana gets contaminated via those steps in a split second: [...]

What happens in the case of an Arahant is that the fast contamination process stops at the manasan stage. At that stage, an Arahant can fully experience the outside world via the six types of vinnana. But he/she will not make any attachments.
The first part of what I'm quoting implies that cakkhu vinnana gets contaminated. I don't disagree, vinnana gets contaminated or defiled. This does not mean that the definition of "vinnana" is "defiled consciousness". Vinnana (consciousness) is subject to defilement and gets defiled, yes.

The second part of what I'm quoting implies that the six sense-vinnanas are still present after uprooting of the defilements but before the break-up of the body. Those six sense-vinnanas are not defiled. Thus, "vinnana" cannot be defined as "defiled consciousness". "Vinnana" is to be defined as "consciousness", and, yes, it can be defiled (it usually is), and can be liberated.

Do you see the difference between saying "consciousness is defiled" and "consciousness is undefiled" vs. "defiled-consciousness is defiled" and "defiled-consciousness is undefiled"? The first two are my understanding, the latter two are yours. Within the latter, the first is tautological while the second is nonsensical.

There is a difference between the definition of a word (the object it points to and defines) and the (usual) state of that object. It's not because vinnana is (usually) defiled for the unawakened that "vinnana" means "defiled consciousness", it simply means "consciousness", and yes, that consciousness is (usually) defiled.

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Lal » Fri Aug 17, 2018 4:10 pm

Do you see the difference between saying "consciousness is defiled" and "consciousness is undefiled" vs. "defiled-consciousness is defiled" and "defiled-consciousness is undefiled"? The first two are my understanding, the latter two are yours.
I did not say any such thing. That is a bizarre statement. Please go back and read carefully and quote from what I wrote.

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Nicolas » Fri Aug 17, 2018 4:38 pm

You mean to define "vinnana" as "defiled consciousness" instead of the orthodox definition of "consciousness".
You later write that a kind of vinnana gets defiled or contaminated, and another vinnana gets or is undefiled (after defilements are uprooted).
Now replace "vinnana" with "defiled consciousness" or with "consciousness" and you get what I wrote.

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Re: The teachings of Ven. Waharaka Abhayaratanalankara Thero

Post by Lal » Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:20 pm

You mean to define "vinnana" as "defiled consciousness" instead of the orthodox definition of "consciousness".
This is unbelievable!
"Defiled consciousness" is not my definition. I gave you the reference to show how an uncontaminated citta becomes contaminated in 9 steps to be contaminated (for anyone but an Arahant).

You need to understand that many terms are abbreviated and not "defined" precisely in the Tipitaka. It is called the "uddesa" (utterance) version. That is how they appear in basic verses like paticca samuppada (PS). They can be explained in "niddesa" with details and "patiniddesa" with examples. That latter is what is done in a Dhamma desana or when delivering a discourse.

Many terms like vinnana and sankhara are used in different places with different meanings. For example, when explaining the akusala-mula PS, the word "sankhara" means "apunnabhi sankhara" or immoral deeds. In kusala-mula PS, it means "punnabhi sankhara". An Arahant doe not do either but does sankhara. You need to learn the basics first.

So, any person who is familiar with the basics of Buddha Dhamma MUST know that vinnana means "defiled consciousness". They also know that an Arahant does not have vinnana, but purified vinnana. One MUST do vinnana nirodha to attain Nibbana. In my previous posts, I have given enough references.

Here are some basic facts:
- A “pabhassara citta” is that base state, or the pure state of a citta, BEFORE it goes through the 9 stages of contamination. It has only the 7 universal cetasika.
- Each and every citta of a given person starts off as a pabhassara citta, but gets contaminated within a split second to varying degrees depending one’s personality or one’s advancement along the Path.
- Even an Arahant‘s citta is not a pabhassara citta; it will contaminate to the level of “mānasan“, as we discussed above. However, Arahant phala citta, which lasts for only one citta, is a pabhassara citta.
- When an Arahant is in Arahant phala samapatti, he/she knows that one is alive, but has no awareness of outside events. This is called animitta, appanihita, suññata samādhi. That is different from the nirōdha samāpatti, where the flow of citta stops.
- In Buddha Dhamma, defilements are associated with “dark”, and pure states are associated with “bright” or “radiant”. So, we could call a pabhassara citta or a “radiant citta“, and a mind that generates AND maintains citta at that state a “radiant mind”.
- The only time such radiant or pure citta flow occur, is when an Arahant is in Arahant phala samapatti, with the Arahant phala citta flowing continuously.

This process of contamination of a citta is what stated in the “Pabhassara Sutta (AN 1.51)“: “Pabhassa­ra­midaṃ, bhikkhave, cittaṃ. Tañca kho āgantukehi upakkilesehi upakkiliṭṭhaṃ. Taṃ assutavā puthujjano yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti. Tasmā ‘assutavato puthujjanassa cittabhāvanā natthī’ti vadāmī ti“.
- Here puthujjana means a normal human who has not been exposed to Buddha Dhamma; specifically, one who does not comprehend Tilakkhana or the real nature (yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti). Thus the last sentence says, “therefore, I do not recommend citta bhavana to such people (assutavato puthujjanassa or those puthujjana who have not heard true Dhamma“.

This is the reason that you all debate for years and don't make any progress. You keep quoting suttas that are translated "word-by-word" and thus distort the true meanings. I have now given many examples. Each sutta (especially deep suttas) need to be translated carefully knowing what the use of a given word is in that particular situation). The sutta that I translated fully above in response to your initial question is a good example. Have you compared that with those three full translations you referred to? I highly recommend that. Then you can get an idea of what I am talking about.

I hope that instead of getting mad at me for pointing these out, you will start thinking rationally, now that these problems are pointed out. I was trapped in the same place for many years, until I came across Waharaka Thero's desanas. I immediately saw the difference and that is why I am perplexed why many of you cannot see the truth when shown with ample evidence.

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