Abhidhamma View : Formations & Consciousness
[Presented by Dr.Tep Sastri @ sariputtadhamma/JTN/Triplegem]
Vism. p. 468 - 472 (excerpt) :
133. I. (1) Herein, firstly, those associated with the first sense-sphere profitable consciousness (1) amount to thirty-six, that is to say, the constant ones, which are the twenty-seven given in the texts as such, and the four â€œor-whateverstates,â€ and also the five inconstant ones (cf. Dhs Â§1).
Herein, the twenty-seven given as such are these: (i) contact, (ii) volition, (iii) applied thought, (iv) sustained thought, (v) happiness (interest), (vi) energy, (vii) life, (viii) concentration, (ix) faith, (x) mindfulness, (xi) conscience, (xii) shame, (xiii) non-greed, (xiv) non-hate, (xv) non-delusion, ... ... (xxviii) zeal (desire), (xxix) resolution, (xxx) attention (bringing to mind), (xxxi) specific neutrality, (xxxii) compassion, (xxxiii) gladness, (xxxiv) abstinence from bodily misconduct, (xxxv) abstinence from verbal misconduct, (xxxvi) abstinence from wrong livelihood.
134. Herein, (i) it touches (phusati), thus it is contact (phassa). This has the characteristic of touching. Its function is the act of impingement. It is manifested as concurrence. Its proximate cause is an objective field that has come into focus. [As to its characteristic], although this is an immaterial state, it occurs with respect to an object as the act of touching too. And [as to its function], although it is not adherent on anyone side as eye-cum-visible-object and ear-cum-sound are, yet it is what makes consciousness and the object impinge. It is said to be manifested as concurrence because it has been described as its own action, namely, the concurrence of the three [(cf. M I 111), that is, eye, visible object, and eye-consciousness]. And it is said to have as its proximate cause an objective field that has come into focus because it arises automatically through the appropriate [conscious] reaction and with a faculty when the objective field is presented. But it should be regarded as like a hideless cow (S II 99) because it is the habitat of feeling.
135. (ii) It wills (cetayati), thus it is volition (cetanaa); it collects, is the meaning. Its characteristic is the state of willing. Its function is to accumulate. It is manifested as coordinating. It accomplishes its own and othersâ€™ functions, as a senior pupil, a head carpenter, etc., do. But it is evident when it occurs in the marshalling (driving) of associated states in connection with urgent work, remembering, and so on.
136. (iii)-(v) What should be said about applied thought, sustained thought, and happiness has already been said in the commentary on the first jhaana in the Description of the Earth Kasi.na (IV.88-98).
137. (vi) Energy (viriya) is the state of one who is vigorous (viira). Its characteristic is marshalling (driving). Its function is to consolidate conascent states. It is manifested as non-collapse. Because of the words: â€œBestirred, he strives wiselyâ€ (A II 115), its proximate cause is a sense of urgency; or its proximate cause is grounds for the initiation of energy. When rightly initiated, it should be regarded as the root of all attainments.
139. (viii) It puts (aadhiyati) consciousness evenly (sama.m) on the object, or it puts it rightly (sammaa) on it, or it is just the mere collecting (samaadhaana) of the mind, thus it is concentration (samaadhi). Its characteristic is non-wandering, or its characteristic is non-distraction. Its function is to conglomerate conascent states as water does bath powder. It is manifested as peace. Usually its proximate cause is bliss. It should be regarded as steadiness of the mind, like the steadiness of a lampâ€™s flame when there is no draught.
140. (ix) By its means they have faith (saddahanti), or it itself is the having of faith, or it is just the act of having faith (saddahana), thus it is faith (saddhaa). Its characteristic is having faith, or its characteristic is trusting. Its function is to clarify, like a water-clearing gem, or its function is to enter into, like the setting out across a flood (cf. Sn 184). It is manifested as non-fogginess, or it is manifested as resolution. Its proximate cause is something to have faith in, or its proximate cause is the things beginning with hearing the Good Dhamma (saddhamma) that constitute the factors of stream-entry. It should be regarded as a hand [because it takes hold of profitable things], as wealth (Sn 182), and as seed (Sn 77).
141. (x) By its means they remember (saranti), or it itself remembers, or it is just mere remembering (sara.na), thus it is mindfulness (sati). It has the characteristic of not wobbling. Its function is not to forget. It is manifested as guarding, or it is manifested as the state of confronting an objective field. Its proximate cause is strong perception, or its proximate cause is the foundations of mindfulness concerned with the body, and so on (see MN 10). It should be regarded, however, as like a pillar because it is firmly founded, or as like a door-keeper because it guards the eye-door, and so on.
142. (xi)-(xii) It has conscientious scruples (hiriyati) about bodily misconduct, etc., thus it is conscience (hiri). This is a term for modesty. It is ashamed (ottappati) of those same things, thus it is shame (ottappa). This is a term for anxiety about evil. Herein, conscience has the characteristic of disgust at evil, while shame has the characteristic of dread of it. Conscience has the function of not doing evil and that in the mode of modesty, while shame has the function of not doing it and that
in the mode of dread. They are manifested as shrinking from evil in the way already stated. Their proximate causes are self-respect and respect of others [respectively]. A man rejects evil through conscience out of respect for himself, as the daughter of a good family does; he rejects evil through shame out of respect for another, as a courtesan does. But these two states should be regarded as the guardians of the world (see A I 51).
143. (xiii) - (xv) By its means they are not greedy (na lubbhanti), or it itself is not greedy, or it is just the mere not being greedy (alubbhana), thus it is non-greed (alobha). The same method applies to non-hate (adosa) and non-delusion (amoha) [na dussanti, adussana = adosa, and na muyhanti, amuyhana = amoha (see Â§Â§171, 161)].
Of these, non-greed has the characteristic of the mindâ€™s lack of desire for an object, or it has the characteristic of non-adherence, like a water drop on a lotus leaf. Its function is not to lay hold, like a liberated bhikkhu. It is manifested as a state of not treating as a shelter, like that of a man who has fallen into filth. Nonhate has the characteristic of lack of savagery, or the characteristic of nonopposing, like a gentle friend. Its function is to remove annoyance, or its function is to remove fever, as sandalwood does. It is manifested as agreeableness, like the full moon. Non-delusion has the characteristic of penetrating [things] according to their individual essences, or it has the characteristic of sure penetration, like the penetration of an arrow shot by a skilful archer. Its function is to illuminate the objective field, like a lamp. It is manifested as non-bewilderment, like a guide in a forest. The three should be regarded as the roots of all that is profitable.
Love Buddha's dhamma,