One "citta" at a time

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby acinteyyo » Sat Oct 29, 2011 8:41 am

Soe Win Htut wrote:But "the citta or consciousness" in Abhidhamma is not as same as the consciousness that we are now understanding.

We should not take the mind or consiciousness we are now knowing is similar to citta the Buddha taught as the original truth (ultimate truth).
Because the time duration and the rate of vanishing of Citta (mind), cetasika (metal factors), and Rupa (energies) the Buddha taught as the original truth are totally different that of Citta, cetasika , and Rupa that our perception can now detect.

The time duration of one unit of citta or consciousness or mind consisting of three phases [arising or genesis (uppada) static or development (thiti), and cessation or dissolution (bhanga)] is even less than one-trillionth part of the time occupied by a flash of lightning which lasts for a microsecond (10^-6 second). The subcommentary takes the higher figure of 10^15. The subcommentary said that the mental elements (cittta & cetasika) arise and cease 10^15 x 10^6 = 10^21 times per second. Their extremely short duration is also mentioned in the Anguttara Nikaya.

To be honest, I don't believe a single word of this nonsense, but this is not subject of this discussion.
Soe Win Htut wrote:We should not take the mind or consiciousness we are now knowing is similar to citta the Buddha taught as the original truth (ultimate truth).

Does this tell us the Abhidhamma? Why? Any quotes?

best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby Soe Win Htut » Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:53 am

acinteyyo wrote:
Soe Win Htut wrote:But "the citta or consciousness" in Abhidhamma is not as same as the consciousness that we are now understanding.

We should not take the mind or consiciousness we are now knowing is similar to citta the Buddha taught as the original truth (ultimate truth).
Because the time duration and the rate of vanishing of Citta (mind), cetasika (metal factors), and Rupa (energies) the Buddha taught as the original truth are totally different that of Citta, cetasika , and Rupa that our perception can now detect.

The time duration of one unit of citta or consciousness or mind consisting of three phases [arising or genesis (uppada) static or development (thiti), and cessation or dissolution (bhanga)] is even less than one-trillionth part of the time occupied by a flash of lightning which lasts for a microsecond (10^-6 second). The subcommentary takes the higher figure of 10^15. The subcommentary said that the mental elements (cittta & cetasika) arise and cease 10^15 x 10^6 = 10^21 times per second. Their extremely short duration is also mentioned in the Anguttara Nikaya.

To be honest, I don't believe a single word of this nonsense, but this is not subject of this discussion.
Soe Win Htut wrote:We should not take the mind or consiciousness we are now knowing is similar to citta the Buddha taught as the original truth (ultimate truth).

Does this tell us the Abhidhamma? Why? Any quotes?

best wishes, acinteyyo


Dear Acinteyyo,

Sorry for my explanation in reverse order.

We should not take the mind and body we are now knowing is directly similar to citta, cetasika, and Rupa the Buddha taught as the original truth (ultimate truth or paramatha). But because of arising and vanishing nature of citta and cetasika in very high rate, the mind and body that our current perception can detect , seem to be real or existing really.

Citta, cetasika, and Rupa the Buddha taught in Abhidhamma is original truth(paramatha sacca) but Citta, cetasika, and Rupa of our current perception is just created truth (pannyati or Sammutic sacca).


It is very simple and straight forward understanding from Abhidhamma pitika or the teaching of Insight meditation teachers(tradition) from Myanmar such as Mogok Sayadaw(Mogok Vipassana) , Tee Inn Gu Vipassana (Tee In Gu Sayadaw) and Sayadaw Ven Ottamasara.

----------------------------------------
The time duration and the rate of vanishing of Citta (mind), cetasika (metal factors), and Rupa (energies) the Buddha taught as the original truth are totally different that of Citta, cetasika , and Rupa that our perception can now detect.
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) in Dhatukatha, the “Discourse on Energies,” (from PTS).
The subcommentary takes the higher figure of 10^15. The subcommentary said that the mental elements (cittta & cetasika) arise and cease 10^15 x 10^6 = 10^21 times per second. Their extremely short duration is also mentioned in the Anguttara Nikaya.

Ref: A Manual of Abhidhamma by Narada Maha Thera
----------------------------------------
The body_matter that our perception can now know and the citta_consciousness or thinking that we can now understand is existing for a second, a minute or a certain period.

If we think the mind and body our perceptions can now detect is directly similar to Citta, cetasika, and Rupa the Buddha taught as the original truths(paramatha sacca), it means we or psychologist have already known and understood the original truths (paramatha sacca) that the Buddha taught without the middle way or Vipassana practice.

We think citta__consciousness of our current perception can now detect is real or existing really. In fact, citta or body that our senses can now detect is unreal, fake and fraud but it seems to be real and existing really in our perception because of the momentum of vanishing nature of citta and cetasika in very high rate (Avijja and Sankhara__or Samudaya Sacca).

What I mean is the citta or consciousness that our perceptions can now detect is just Sammuti sacca(pannyati).
Until real enlightenment (or) untill the mind is able to surpass or transcend the boundaries of
conceptuality (pannyati), whatever mind and body of our current perception is just the created truths (pannyati or sammuti sacca) .

kind regards,
Awareness(mental noting) alone is not enough for real enlightenment. (Ashin Tejaniya)
Created truths(Sammuti Sacca) are just to be used only, experienced only and known only but .....they are not for noting, believing, confirming, centering and thinking as reality and real importance.
Vipassana (Insight meditation) is just the abandoning the mind-action of centering, grasping, confirming, and attaching the created truths as reality and as of real importance.
To Learn more....
http://www.thabarwa.org, or
http://www.thabarwa.org/guided-insight-mp3-talks/
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby acinteyyo » Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:37 pm

Soe Win Htut wrote:Dear Acinteyyo,
Sorry for my explanation in reverse order.

Hi Soe Win Htut,

no need for excuses. Thank you for your explanation but unfortunately you just repeated nearly the same things as before.
Just to tell me that somebody said the duration of mental elements (cittta & cetasika) arise and cease 10^15 x 10^6 = 10^21 times per second is not an convincing argument.
Soe Win Htut wrote:Their extremely short duration is also mentioned in the Anguttara Nikaya.

"extremely short" is a very elastic term. Can you provide a Sutta from the Anguttara Nikaya which supports your statement?
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
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Nov 01, 2011 6:07 pm

This sutta discusses the speed of the mind. Perhaps it's the one Soe Win Htut is thinking of.

SN 12.61 Assutavā Sutta: Uninstructed (1)
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"It would be better for the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person to hold to the body composed of the four great elements, rather than the mind, as the self. Why is that? Because this body composed of the four great elements is seen standing for a year, two years, three, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, a hundred years or more. But what's called 'mind,' 'intellect,' or 'consciousness' by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another. Just as a monkey, swinging through a forest wilderness, grabs a branch. Letting go of it, it grabs another branch. Letting go of that, it grabs another one. Letting go of that, it grabs another one. In the same way, what's called 'mind,' 'intellect,' or 'consciousness' by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another.


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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby acinteyyo » Tue Nov 01, 2011 6:56 pm

mikenz66 wrote:This sutta discusses the speed of the mind. Perhaps it's the one Soe Win Htut is thinking of.

SN 12.61 Assutavā Sutta: Uninstructed (1)
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"It would be better for the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person to hold to the body composed of the four great elements, rather than the mind, as the self. Why is that? Because this body composed of the four great elements is seen standing for a year, two years, three, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, a hundred years or more. But what's called 'mind,' 'intellect,' or 'consciousness' by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another. Just as a monkey, swinging through a forest wilderness, grabs a branch. Letting go of it, it grabs another branch. Letting go of that, it grabs another one. Letting go of that, it grabs another one. In the same way, what's called 'mind,' 'intellect,' or 'consciousness' by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another.


:anjali:
Mike

Hi Mike,

perhaps... but seriously this sutta doesn't imply such insane speed as mentioned, not even slightly. That what's called "mind", "intellect" or "consciousness" by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another can be seen easily. That it changes faster than the body, composed of the four great elements, which is seen standing for a year, two years, three, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, a hundred years or more is not surprising.
But to come from this to a duration of mental elements (cittta & cetasika arising and ceasing) at 10^15 x 10^6 = 10^21 times per second however is very surprising.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:06 pm

I'm rather suspicious of over-interpretation from a very modern perspective here:
The time duration of one unit of citta or consciousness or mind consisting of three phases [arising or genesis (uppada) static or development (thiti), and cessation or dissolution (bhanga)] is even less than one-trillionth part of the time occupied by a flash of lightning which lasts for a microsecond (10^-6 second). The subcommentary takes the higher figure of 10^15. The subcommentary said that the mental elements (cittta & cetasika) arise and cease 10^15 x 10^6 = 10^21 times per second. Their extremely short duration is also mentioned in the Anguttara Nikaya.

I have not examined the original text (not sure exactly where to look...) but obviously this is a very modern calculation.

One can immediately discount the "microsecond" number. If you asked me to observe a lightning flash without the benefit of electronic gadgetry or modern calculations I would most likely conclude that a lightning flash lasts for around a second. To me the flash usually appears "frozen" in the sky for a considerable time (perhaps partly due to overload of the retina...).

And as for the trillionth (10^-12), I gather that's made up of a bunch of factors, most of which one might assume are there for effect, rather than any attempt at scientific accuracy. It would be interesting to see the actual Abhidhamma and Commentary texts.

:namaste:
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:43 pm

See Bhikkhu Bodhi's comments on page 156 of CMA (you should be able to click on the relevant page...):
http://books.google.com.au/books?id=hxo ... an&f=false

The Sutta referred to there is:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
AN 3.47 Sankhata Sutta: Fabricated
"Monks, these three are fabricated characteristics of what is fabricated. Which three? Arising is discernible, passing away is discernible, alteration (literally, other-ness) while staying is discernible.


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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby cooran » Tue Nov 01, 2011 11:14 pm

Hello all,

Not sure if this post from another forum will add to the discussion:

Duration of Cittas, Cetasikas, Rupa

Dear Alex and others,

“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. Nevertheless, though
seemingly infinitesimal, each mind-moment in turn
consists of three sub-moments – arising (uppaada),
presence (thiti), and dissolution (bhanga). Within the
breadth of a mind-moment, a citta arises, performs its
momentary function, and then dissolves, conditioning
the next citta in immediate succession. Thus, through
the sequence of mind-moments, the flow of
consciousness continues uninterrupted like the waters
in a stream.” [page 156 of CMA]

“Material phenomena as well pass through the same
three stages of arising, presence, and dissolution,
but for them the time required for these three stages
to elapse is equal to the time it takes for seventeen
cittas to arise and perish. The stages of arising and
dissolution are equal in duration for both material
and mental phenomena, but in the case of material
phenomena the stage of presence is equal to forty-nine
sub-moments of mental phenomena,” [pp. 156-157 0f CMA]

“The cetasikas are mental phenomena that occur in
immediate conjunction with citta or consciousness, and
assist citta by performing more specific tasks in the
total act of cognition. The mental factors cannot
arise without citta, nor can citta arise completely
segregated from the mental factors. But though the two
are functionally interdependent, citta is regarded as
primary because the mental factors assist in the
cognition of the object depending upon citta., which
is the principal cognitive element. The relationship
between citta and the cetasikas is compared to that
between a king and his retinue. Although one says “the
king is coming”, the king does not come alone, but he
always comes accompanied by his attendants. Similarly,
whenever a citta arises, it never arises alone but
always accompanied by its retinue of cetatsikas.”
[page 76 of CMA]

The four characteristics that delineate the
relationship between the citta and its concomitant
cetasikas are as follows:
(1) arising together with consciousness (ekuppaada),
(2) ceasing together with consciousness (ekanirodha),
(3) having the same object as consciousness
(ekaalambana),
(4) having the same base as consciousness
(ekavatthuka).
[page 77 of CMA]

Respectfully,
Han

http://www.abhidhamma.org/forums/lofive ... p?t81.html

with metta
Chris
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Nov 01, 2011 11:39 pm

Thanks Chris,

That's easier than going to the Google Books reference I gave above.

Unfortunately, I guess the actual calculation being referred to is buried in some untranslated commentary...

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby cooran » Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:32 am

Hello Mike,all,

A .zip file of A Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma (CMA) is available at:
http://www.buddhanet.net/ftp07.htm

with metta
Chris
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

:anjali:
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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 (page no.22)


pls see : http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/abhidhamma.pdf (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
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 real enlightenment. (Ashin Tejaniya)
Created truths(Sammuti Sacca) are just to be used only, experienced only and known only but .....they are not for noting, believing, confirming, centering and thinking as reality and real importance.
Vipassana (Insight meditation) is just the abandoning the mind-action of centering, grasping, confirming, and attaching the created truths as reality and as of real importance.
To Learn more....
http://www.thabarwa.org, or
http://www.thabarwa.org/guided-insight-mp3-talks/
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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

Postby 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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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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

Postby 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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