Store consciousness in Theravada

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
Post Reply
User avatar
BubbaBuddhist
Posts: 640
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 5:55 am
Location: Knoxville, Tennessee
Contact:

Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by BubbaBuddhist » Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:06 pm

While reading this article by the learned Venerable Dr. Walpole Rahula, cited in another thread:
http://www.urbandharma.org/udharma3/theramaya.html I ran across the following provocative reference:
Besides the idea of Sunyata is the concept of the store-consciousness in Mahayana Buddhism which has its seed in the Theravada texts. The Mahayanists have developed it into a deep psychology and philosophy.
I have always been fascinated with the concept of alaya-vijñāna from Yogachara. Some discussion from another forum compared Store consciousness to Bhvangha citta. This seemed to make perfect sense to me, however, I was also told comparing "Mahayana Wrong View" to Theravada concepts was inadmissible.

So here is the question: What "seed" in the Pali texts is Ven. Rahula speaking of? Is it, indeed Bvanga or something else?

J/ Bb
Author of Redneck Buddhism: or Will You Reincarnate as Your Own Cousin?

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 3618
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Cremation Ground, Phrao District, Chiangmai

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Dhammanando » Mon Feb 02, 2009 3:31 am

Hi Bubba,
Bubbabuddhist wrote:So here is the question: What "seed" in the Pali texts is Ven. Rahula speaking of? Is it, indeed Bvanga or something else?
It is bhavanga. The identification of Yogacarin alayavijnana with Theravadin bhavanga actually originates not with W. Rahula, but in some Yogacarin text (I've forgotten which one, but I think it's either one of Asanga's or else the Samdhirnamocana Sutra).

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 18171
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by retrofuturist » Mon Feb 02, 2009 3:34 am

Greetings bhante,

Where does bhavanga fit, with respect the schema of the six consciousnesses... eye, ear, nose, tongue, tactile and mind?

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

User avatar
tiltbillings
Posts: 23043
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by tiltbillings » Mon Feb 02, 2009 3:38 am

A lengthy, detailed discussion of this question is found in William Waldron's study of origin of the alasya notion, THE BUDDHIST UNCONSCIOUS: The alaya-vijnana in the context of Indian Buddhist Thought.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 3618
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Cremation Ground, Phrao District, Chiangmai

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Dhammanando » Mon Feb 02, 2009 3:50 am

Hi Retro,
retrofuturist wrote:Where does bhavanga fit, with respect the schema of the six consciousnesses... eye, ear, nose, tongue, tactile and mind?
It's one kind of mind-consciousness.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu

User avatar
BubbaBuddhist
Posts: 640
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 5:55 am
Location: Knoxville, Tennessee
Contact:

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by BubbaBuddhist » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:30 am

Hurrah, thanks Bhante, this is very good. Also thanks everyone else for the references for further inquiry.

J
Author of Redneck Buddhism: or Will You Reincarnate as Your Own Cousin?

Heavenstorm
Posts: 69
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 8:37 am

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Heavenstorm » Mon Feb 02, 2009 6:28 am

I see Yogacara as a major attempt to bridge the abhidharmas of the early Buddhist schools and later Mahayana sutras in order to increase the authenticity of the latter in the eyes of Buddhists.

thecap
Posts: 96
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by thecap » Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:00 am

Heavenstorm wrote:I see Yogacara as a major attempt to bridge the abhidharmas of the early Buddhist schools and later Mahayana sutras in order to increase the authenticity of the latter in the eyes of Buddhists.
It looks like the authenticity of words lies in the bhavanga of the beholder.

Element

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Element » Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:13 am

thecap wrote:
Heavenstorm wrote:It looks like the authenticity of words lies in the bhavanga of the beholder.
Thanissaro provides some commentary here on bhavanga-citta.

For the very reason unclear minds cannot see arising & passing is the very reason why most religions hold there is a permanent soul.

Buddha did not spend six years searching for no reason, despite being able to enter jhana as a child. The mind is indeed illusive & delusive.

I disagree with you Cap. From a Modern Theravada perspective, I would say the bhavanga lies in the bhavatanha of the beholder.
Last edited by Element on Mon Feb 02, 2009 10:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

thecap
Posts: 96
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by thecap » Mon Feb 02, 2009 4:49 pm

Element wrote:Thanissaro provides some commentary here on bhavanga-citta.
Thanissaro raises more questions than he answers, doesn't he?
For the very reason unclear minds cannot see arising & passing is the very reason why most religions hold there is a permanent soul.
Looks like it.
Buddha did not spend six years searching for no reason, despite being able to enter jhana as a child. Then mind is indeed illusive & delusive.
Yet the mind is not only one single entity, is it? It is layered, for example there is the conscious and the subconscious. When we remove defilements of the conscious, we can see the subconscious creating and destroying the 'I' and controlling us like a puppy through desires. Then we can draw the consequences and turn the tables, so to speak.
I disagree with you Cap. From a Modern Theravada perspective, I would say the bhavanga lies in the bhavatanha & vibhavatanha of the beholder.
To be clear, I understand bhavanga to be the condition for becoming in your sentence above. However, when we remove defilements of mind, does the condition simply go away, or is it still there, like the five aggregates are still there in an arahat? For I understand bhavanga to be the subconscious in a wider sense, and it doesn't just puff away in a cloud of smoke only because we catch it, does it? Does bhavanga not become a part of luminous mind? To be clear, what exactly do you mean by bhavanga, bhavantanha and vibhavantanha here? Please translate it as you understand it.

User avatar
Will
Posts: 752
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Will » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:28 pm

I skimmed the chapter in Waldron's book on alaya-vijnana in the Theravada and I did not gain any clarity. Will have to study and not skim, I guess.
Distrust everyone in whom the impulse to punish is powerful!
Nietzsche

Element

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Element » Mon Feb 02, 2009 10:58 pm

thecap wrote: To be clear, what exactly do you mean by bhavanga, bhavantanha here?
I only meant the bhava tanha. Most people do not want to die. Regarding the bhavanga, it is unclear insight. Buddha said all consciousness, gross or subtle, have the three marks of conditioned phenomena.

In Buddhism there is only one permanent phenomena, namely, the Nibbana element.

thecap
Posts: 96
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:19 am
Location: Germany

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by thecap » Mon Feb 02, 2009 11:24 pm

Element wrote:
thecap wrote: To be clear, what exactly do you mean by bhavanga, bhavantanha here?
I only meant the bhava tanha. Most people do not want to die. Regarding the bhavanga, it is unclear insight. Buddha said all consciousness, gross or subtle, have the three marks of conditioned phenomena.

In Buddhism there is only one permanent phenomena, namely, the Nibbana element.
Of course, you're right, friend Element. How dare thecap diverge from the goal. :embarassed: I just hope nibbana here lies not in the vibhavatanha of the beholder. :shock: ;) :meditate:

User avatar
Javi
Posts: 460
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 5:40 pm
Location: Sacramento, CA

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Javi » Thu Aug 24, 2017 9:56 pm

Dhammanando wrote:Hi Bubba,
Bubbabuddhist wrote:So here is the question: What "seed" in the Pali texts is Ven. Rahula speaking of? Is it, indeed Bvanga or something else?
It is bhavanga. The identification of Yogacarin alayavijnana with Theravadin bhavanga actually originates not with W. Rahula, but in some Yogacarin text (I've forgotten which one, but I think it's either one of Asanga's or else the Samdhirnamocana Sutra).

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu
I know this is an old post but I wanted to add that it is from Asanga's Mahayanasamgraha, as quoted in Waldron page 131:
I.11 a. Moreover, the alaya-vijñana is also taught in the Disciple’s
Vehicle through different figures of speech (paryaya). …

b. In the scriptures (agama) of the Mahasadghikas, too, the expression
“root-consciousness” (mjla-vijñana) occurs. By this synonym
also this [alaya-vijñana] is taught. It is like a tree which
depends upon its root.

c. In the scriptures of the Mahnkasakas also the expression “the
aggregate which lasts as long as samsara” (asadsarika-skandha)
occurs. By this synonym also this [alaya-vijñana] is taught,
because although at certain places and at certain times it is seen
that the bodily form (rjpa) and the mind (citta) are interrupted,
their seeds in the alaya-vijñana are not interrupted.

d. In the scriptures of the Ariya Sthaviras, also, the following [stages
of the perceptual process] occur: life-continuum, seeing, knowing,
adverting, exerting, examining, and the seventh, engaging
(bhavanga, darkana, jñana, avarjana, iñjita, prekha, pravartana).

I.12. Therefore, the support of the knowable (jñeyakraya), which is
taught as the alaya-vijñana, the appropriating-consciousness, citta, the
alaya,5 the root-consciousness, the aggregate which lasts as long as
samsara, and the life-continuum, are [all] the alaya-vijñana. [By these
synonyms] the alaya-vijñana is established as the royal path.

(MSg I.10–12)
Vayadhammā saṅkhārā appamādena sampādethā — All things decay and disappoint, it is through vigilance that you succeed — Mahāparinibbāna Sutta

Self-taught poverty is a help toward philosophy, for the things which philosophy attempts to teach by reasoning, poverty forces us to practice. — Diogenes of Sinope

I have seen all things that are done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a chase after wind — Ecclesiastes 1.14

form
Posts: 612
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 3:23 am

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by form » Fri Aug 25, 2017 1:15 am

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhavanga

Becoming? Clinging leads to becoming?

Unconscious eh?

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 3618
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Cremation Ground, Phrao District, Chiangmai

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Dhammanando » Fri Aug 25, 2017 3:41 am

form wrote:https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhavanga

Becoming? Clinging leads to becoming?

Unconscious eh?
Sure. Most mental processing is unconscious. For example, the sutta formulas for the twenty kinds of sakkāyadiṭṭhi, although represented in the form of verbalizations, are nonetheless not things that the puthujjana goes about mentally muttering to herself.

form
Posts: 612
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 3:23 am

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by form » Fri Aug 25, 2017 6:15 am

Dhammanando wrote:
form wrote:https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhavanga

Becoming? Clinging leads to becoming?

Unconscious eh?
Sure. Most mental processing is unconscious. For example, the sutta formulas for the twenty kinds of sakkāyadiṭṭhi, although represented in the form of verbalizations, are nonetheless not things that the puthujjana goes about mentally muttering to herself.
Occult anatomy, eh? :mrgreen:

Ancient unconscious psychology model.

User avatar
Javi
Posts: 460
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 5:40 pm
Location: Sacramento, CA

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Javi » Fri Aug 25, 2017 4:03 pm

form wrote:
Dhammanando wrote:
form wrote:https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhavanga

Becoming? Clinging leads to becoming?

Unconscious eh?
Sure. Most mental processing is unconscious. For example, the sutta formulas for the twenty kinds of sakkāyadiṭṭhi, although represented in the form of verbalizations, are nonetheless not things that the puthujjana goes about mentally muttering to herself.
Occult anatomy, eh? :mrgreen:

Ancient unconscious psychology model.
not occult, just subconscious

this is pretty well established in Western cognitive psychology as well btw, its pretty uncontroversial that much of our mental processing is automatic and happening under the radar so to speak
Vayadhammā saṅkhārā appamādena sampādethā — All things decay and disappoint, it is through vigilance that you succeed — Mahāparinibbāna Sutta

Self-taught poverty is a help toward philosophy, for the things which philosophy attempts to teach by reasoning, poverty forces us to practice. — Diogenes of Sinope

I have seen all things that are done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a chase after wind — Ecclesiastes 1.14

form
Posts: 612
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 3:23 am

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by form » Fri Aug 25, 2017 8:28 pm

Occult in the sense that many Buddhists dun understand or accept it in a psychology science way.

User avatar
Javi
Posts: 460
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 5:40 pm
Location: Sacramento, CA

Re: Store consciousness in Theravada

Post by Javi » Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:08 pm

Actually, I may jumped the gun here, see the following note by Gethin
The notion of bhavaṅga is not mentioned by Asaṅga in the earlier Mahāyānasaṃgraha (which makes Schmithausen sceptical about the influence of the notion on the development of the concept of ālaya-vijñāna), but is added by the commentator (sec É. Lamotte, La somme du grand véhicule, Louvain, 1938, II, 28, 8*); the notion is also cited by Hsüan-tsang (see La Vallée Poussin, Vijñaptimātratāsiddhi, 1, 178– 9).
from Gethin, Bhavaṅga and Rebirth According to the Abhidhamma. emphasis added

so which is it? :thinking:

He also mentions that
As Lance Cousins and Lambert
Schmithausen have pointed out, Vasubandhu cites the notion of the bhavaṅga-vijñāna of
the Sinhalese school (Tāmraparṇīya-nikaya) as a forerunner of the ālaya-vijñāna.
Vayadhammā saṅkhārā appamādena sampādethā — All things decay and disappoint, it is through vigilance that you succeed — Mahāparinibbāna Sutta

Self-taught poverty is a help toward philosophy, for the things which philosophy attempts to teach by reasoning, poverty forces us to practice. — Diogenes of Sinope

I have seen all things that are done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a chase after wind — Ecclesiastes 1.14

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Crazy cloud, Domeniko and 53 guests