MayaRefugee wrote:....when I said "vocabulary" my intention was to refer to the bank of thought-forms that to the best of my knowledge and observation exist in ones mind/memory, thought-forms that haven't undergone expression yet, thought forms that haven't been turned into something i.e. sound-waves, a symbol, an image, etc - sort of like the paint that sits idle on a pallete yet to make it on the canvas.
I'm interested in the proper treatment of the paint that sits idle on the pallete i.e. my bank of unmanifest thought-forms.
I ask myself:
- how much paint should be on the pallete?
- what's the right type/qulaity of paint to have on the pallete?
- what's the right intention to have when moving this paint from the pallete to the canvas?
- what purpose is there to move paint from a pallete onto a canvas?
- what are the repurcussions of moving paint from a pallete to a canvas?
- is there really a need to have a pallete of paint?
- is it possible to not have a pallete of paint?
Whilst reading the material pt1 suggested a few questions arose in my mind and took me off on a few tangents, investigating these tangents lead to the discovery of some interesting concepts - I think they sort of mirror aspects of what I was trying to allude to when I used the above analogy to pose the associated questions.
I've copied and pasted bits and pieces together to try and convey my findings, I apologise if things get repeated - I'll list the sources below.
Anyway, the primary concept I've found is ālayavijñāna
- this seems to be akin to the palette in my analogy above, more specifically a pallete that harbours the most pure paint possible.
Alayavijñāna is one of two extra consciousnesses proposed by the Yogacara School - I'll assume you know the six-sense consciousnesses already and just divulge these extra two:Seventh consciousness:
"The manas consciousness ","Obscuration-consciousness" (Tibetan: nyon-yid rnam-shes); (Sanskrit: klistamanas
= klesha "obscuration", "poison", "enemy"; manas "ideation", "moving mind", "mind monkey" (volition?); a consciousness which through apprehension, gathers the hindrances, the poisons, the karmic formations (c.f. Manas (early Buddhism)). Eighth consciousness:
"store-house consciousness" (Tibetan: kun-gzhi rnam-shes; Sanskrit: ālāyavijñāna
); " The seed consciousness (bi^ja-vijn~a^na); "the consciousness which is the basis of the other seven. The seven prior consciousnesses are based and founded upon the eighth. It serves as the container for all experiential impressions termed metaphorically as bija or "seeds". It is the aggregate which administers and yields rebirth; this idea may in some respects be compared to the usage of the word "citta" in the agamas. In the early texts the sankhara-khandha plays some of the roles ascribed to the store-house consciousness by later Yogacara thinkers.
Through the process of seed(s) purging, the dharma practitioner can became a Arahat when the four defilement mental functions i.e. self-delusion, self-view, egotism and self-love, of the seventh consciousness are purified. By then the polluted Mental Functions of the first six consciousnesses would have been cleansed, since the seventh or the Manas consciousness dictates whether or not the seeds drain from the eighth Seed consciousness, and whether or not the content breaks through becoming a "function" to be perceived by us in the mental or physicial world. Furthermore,in contrast to an Arahat, a Buddha is one with all his seeds stored in the eighth Seed consciousness. Cleansed and substituted, bad for good, one for one, his polluted-seeds-containing eighth consciousness (Alaya Consciousness) becomes an all-seeds-purified eighth consciousness (Pure consciousness), and he becomes a Buddha.
In the Lankavatarasutra the term tathagatagarbha is used as a synonym for alayavijnana and is described as 'luminous by nature' (prakrtiprabhasvara) and 'pure by nature' (prakrtiparisuddha) but appearing as impure 'because it is sullied by adventitious defilements' (agantuklesopaklistataya). In the Anguttaranikaya, citta is described as 'luminous' (pabhassara), but it is 'sullied by adventitious minor defilements' (agantukehi upakkilesehi upakkilittham).
One may notice here that alaya-vijnana (or tathagatgarbha) and citta are described almost by the same terms. We have seen earlier that the Sandhi-nirmocana-sutra says that alayavijnana is also called citta.
The attainment of Nirvana is achieved by 'the revolution of alayavijnana' which is called asrayaparavrtti. The same idea is conveyed by the expression alayasamugghata - 'uprooting of alaya' - which is used in the Pali Canon as a synonym for Nirvana. Here it should be remembered, too, that analaya, 'no-alaya', is another synonym for Nirvana.
For Asanga (fourth century C.E.), citta, manas and vijnana are three different and distinct aspects of the vyjnanaskandha. He defines this Aggregate as follows:
'What is the definition of the Aggregate of Consciousness (vijnanaskandha)? It is mind (citta), mental organ (manas) and also consciousness (vijnana).
"And there what is mind (citta)? It is alayavijnana (Store-Consciousness) containing all seeds (sarvabijaka), impregnated with the traces (impressions) (vasanaparibhavita) of Aggregates (skandha), Elements (dhatu) and Spheres (ayatana) ...
'What is mental organ (manas)? It is the object of alayavijnana always having the nature of self-notion (self-conceit) (manyanatmaka) associated with four defilements, viz. the false idea of self (atmadrsti), self-love (atmasneha), the conceit of 'I am' (asmimana) and ignorance (avidya) ...
'What is consciousness (vijnana)? It consists of the six groups of consciousness (sad vijnanakayah), viz. visual consciousness (caksurvijnana), auditory (srotra), olfactory (ghrana), gustatory (jihva), tactile (kaya), and mental consciousness (manovijnana) ...
Alayavijnana is considered by men as their "Soul', 'Self', 'Ego' or 'Atman'.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eight_Consciousnesseshttp://www.purifymind.com/StoreConsciousness.htmhttp://www.buddhismtoday.com/english/philosophy/maha/032-Alayavijnana.htmhttp://www.bddronline.net.au/bddr13no4/abhi065.html