One "citta" at a time

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mikenz66
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by mikenz66 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:51 am

Hi Chris,

That seems to just be the introduction, which is also here:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... himan.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

:anjali:
Mike

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robertk
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by robertk » Wed Nov 02, 2011 4:23 am

"In the Book of Causation (Nidaanavagga) VII The Great Subchapter 61
(1) Uninstructed (1) p. 595 Samyutta Nikaya Vol 1 (translated by Bodhi)
"
But that which is called 'mind' and 'mentality' and consciousness'
arises as one thing and ceases as another by day and by night. Just
as a monkey roaming through a forest grabs hold of one branch, lets
that go and grabs another, then lets that go and grabs still
another, so too that which is called 'mind' and 'mentality'
and 'consciousness' arises as one thing and ceases as another by day
and by night. [note 157]
"
[note 157: Spk: 'By day and by night (rattiyaa ca divasassa ca):
This is a genitive in the locative sense, i.e., during the night and
during the day. Arises as one thing and ceases as another (annadeva
uppajjati, anna.m nirujjhati): The meaning is that (the mind) that
arises and ceases during the day is other than (the mind) that
arises and ceases during the night. The statement should not be
taken to mean that one thing arises and some thing altogether
different, which had not arisen, ceases. "Day and night" is said by
way of continuity, taking a continuity of lesser duration than the
previous one (i.e. the one stated for the body). But one citta is
not able to endure for a whole day or a whole night. Even in the
time of a fingersnap many hundred thousand kotis of cittas arise and
cease (1 koti=10 million)
.

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acinteyyo
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by acinteyyo » Wed Nov 02, 2011 8:52 am

robertk wrote:But one citta is
not able to endure for a whole day or a whole night. Even in the
time of a fingersnap many hundred thousand kotis of cittas arise and
cease (1 koti=10 million)
.
Hi all,

because of mere statements like that I'm asking for particular quotes as support!
Up to now all I found is:
“The life-span of a citta is termed, in the
Abhidhamma, a mind-moment (cittakkhana). This is a
temporal unit of such brief duration that, according
to the commentators
, in the time that it takes for
lightning to flash or the eyes to blink, billions of
mind-moments can elapse.
(emphasize added)
What did the commentators actually say?

best wishes, acinteyyo
Thag 1.20. Ajita - I do not fear death; nor do I long for life. I’ll lay down this body, aware and mindful.

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robertk
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by robertk » Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:13 am

acinteyyo wrote:
robertk wrote:But one citta is
not able to endure for a whole day or a whole night. Even in the
time of a fingersnap many hundred thousand kotis of cittas arise and
cease (1 koti=10 million)
.
Hi all,

because of mere statements like that I'm asking for particular quotes as support!
Up to now all I found is:
The quote I gave was a translation by Bhikku Bodhi of the Spk. Saratthappakasini (Saµyutta-nikaya commentary), compiled by Buddhaghosa.
Are you looking for another Commentary, not sure what you mean by 'mere statements'?

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mikenz66
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by mikenz66 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:55 am

Hi Robert, :hello:

I presumed that there would be some statement in the commentaries explaining how that number was arrived at.
Without knowing that, it's not clear whether the statement is meant to be taken literally, or whether it was just supposed to mean: "It's really, really, fast".

As I said above, blindly plugging in a scientific number for the duration of a lightning flash seems wildly anachronistic. And without a proper context for the commentary extract it is hard to tell whether it was intended to be interpreted as a serious quantitative statement.

:anjali:

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Soe Win Htut
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by Soe Win Htut » Wed Nov 02, 2011 10:17 am

acinteyyo wrote:
.......perhaps... but seriously this sutta doesn't imply such insane speed as mentioned,...............


......Does the Abhidhamma literature just tell us, arising and ceasing of mental elements is too fast to be recognized correctly as it is by common perception?.......

best wishes, acinteyyo
pls see : http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/nutshell.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; (page no.22)


pls see : http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/abhidhamma.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; (page 240)
" .............According to Abhidhamma ordinarily there is no moment when we do not experience a particular kind of consciousness, hanging on to some object—whether physical or mental. The time-limit of such a consciousness is termed one thought-moment.
The rapidity of the succession of such thought-moments is hardly conceivable by the ken of
human knowledge.
Books state that within the brief duration of a flash of lightning, or in the twinkling of an eye billions of thought-moments may arise and perish............"


http://www.wisdom-books.com/ProductDetail.asp?PID=398" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
In Dhatukatha of Pali Text Society, the “Discourse on Elements,” it also calculate the life span(vanishing rate) of the elements or energies with respect to that of citta.

..........Buddha said” The Energies/elements are Void of Beings or something”. The elements do not possess the characteristic functions of living beings.
They arise and cease within an exceedingly short period of time. In the wink of an eye or a flash of lightning, which lasts for a microsecond (10^-6 second), the mental elements (cittta & cetasika) arise and cease a trillion (10^12) times. (1,000,000,000,000 times). This is just an estimate.
The subcommentary takes the higher figure of 10^15. Thus the mental elements arise and cease 10^15 x 10^6 = 10^21 times per second. Their extremely short duration is also mentioned in the Anguttara Nikaya.
As regards the material energies/elements, since they endure for 17 thought-moments (consciousness). they arise and cease 10^21/17 (app= 58,823,530, 000,000, 000,000) times per second.
But because the functions of the energies give rise to the concepts of continuity, collection and form the ideas arise of (1) the initial effort that has to be exerted when a deed is about to be performed and (2) the care that has to be taken while the deed is being performed to its completion. And this leads to the subsequent ideas (3) “I can perform” and (4) “I can feel”, .................

kind regards,
Awareness(mental noting) alone is not enough for enlightenment. (Ashin Tejaniya)
Created truths(Sammuti Sacca) are just to be used only, experienced only and known onlyWithout rejecting and attaching them with the idea of reality.
Vipassana (Insight meditation) is changing from the volitional action to action-only, attachment to detachment, misunderstanding to right understanding.
To Learn more....
http://www.thabarwa.org" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;, or
http://www.thabarwa.org/guided-insight-mp3-talks/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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kirk5a
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by kirk5a » Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:24 pm

robertk wrote: But one citta is
not able to endure for a whole day or a whole night. Even in the
time of a fingersnap many hundred thousand kotis of cittas arise and
cease (1 koti=10 million)
.
Could this large number be understood in parallel rather than serially? I'm just wondering if "citta" can refer to sensations, say, then it seems "a lot" of particular "vibratory" events are arising and ceasing simultaneously.
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by robertk » Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:31 pm

mikenz66 wrote:Hi Robert, :hello:

I presumed that there would be some statement in the commentaries explaining how that number was arrived at.
Without knowing that, it's not clear whether the statement is meant to be taken literally, or whether it was just supposed to mean: "It's really, really, fast".

As I said above, blindly plugging in a scientific number for the duration of a lightning flash seems wildly anachronistic. And without a proper context for the commentary extract it is hard to tell whether it was intended to be interpreted as a serious quantitative statement.

:anjali:
yes, silly Commnetaries. Please delete the post, sorry I put it up for general ridicule.

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robertk
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by robertk » Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:39 pm

kirk5a wrote:
robertk wrote: But one citta is
not able to endure for a whole day or a whole night. Even in the
time of a fingersnap many hundred thousand kotis of cittas arise and
cease (1 koti=10 million)
.
Could this large number be understood in parallel rather than serially? I'm just wondering if "citta" can refer to sensations, say, then it seems "a lot" of particular "vibratory" events are arising and ceasing simultaneously.
No it cant.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by mikenz66 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 6:18 pm

robertk wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:Hi Robert, :hello:

I presumed that there would be some statement in the commentaries explaining how that number was arrived at.
Without knowing that, it's not clear whether the statement is meant to be taken literally, or whether it was just supposed to mean: "It's really, really, fast".

As I said above, blindly plugging in a scientific number for the duration of a lightning flash seems wildly anachronistic. And without a proper context for the commentary extract it is hard to tell whether it was intended to be interpreted as a serious quantitative statement.

:anjali:
yes, silly Commnetaries. Please delete the post, sorry I put it up for general ridicule.
Hi Robert,

As you see above, my main criticism was not of the Commentaries, which would be inappropriate since this is a the Abhidhamma Forum.

The microsecond idea clearly has nothing to do with the commentaries, so I'm quite free to ridicule taking that number seriously.

What I'm interested in is some more detail on the number in the commentary and how the commentator arrived at it. All we have here is a short extract.

:anjali:
Mike

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Alex123
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by Alex123 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 6:50 pm

Hello all,

I wonder if it is even possible for us to directly perceive 10^21 cittas per second.
Can it be directly experienced by us?
Can it be directly experienced by the Buddha?
Last edited by Alex123 on Wed Nov 02, 2011 7:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by mikenz66 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 6:58 pm

That's one of the questions I had on this thread: http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=2051" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Which is, in part, why I'm interested in examining where these numbers come from.

:anjali:
Mike

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Alex123
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by Alex123 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 7:14 pm

Here is the problem that I am thinking about:

In order to know anything, such as characteristic of a citta a citta-vīthi process made of 17 cittas is required.
One citta cannot be aware of its own characteristics.
Only one citta happens at a time, and past cittas do not exist.

Since only one citta happens at a time, when one knows something it is about something that is already gone and no longer is. So this knowledge is NOT direct.

So how was the number arrived at and isn't the number itself a conceptual construct?

Time is a concept, kālapaññatti,(pg 327 in CMA) and so that would make the number of cittas per second conceptual. So how can concept be directly perceived?
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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kirk5a
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by kirk5a » Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:27 pm

robertk wrote:
kirk5a wrote:
Could this large number be understood in parallel rather than serially? I'm just wondering if "citta" can refer to sensations, say, then it seems "a lot" of particular "vibratory" events are arising and ceasing simultaneously.
No it cant.
and what is the evidence for that?
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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mikenz66
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Post by mikenz66 » Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:54 pm

Hi Kirk,

Please remember that this is the Abhidhamma Forum. I agree that it is useful to ask about how the meaning of the Abhidhamma and commentaries should be understood, but we should be focussing on what the texts actually say (which is why I keep asking if anyone can provide a source for how the commentaries arrived at that particular number).

The texts seem quite clear that there is no "parallel processing" of cittas.

:anjali:
Mike

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