One "citta" at a time

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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.
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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
Which is, in part, why I'm interested in examining where these numbers come from.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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?
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby 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.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby kirk5a » Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:34 pm

mikenz66 wrote: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

Indeed I do see that this is the Abhidhamma Forum which is why I am asking for the textual evidence that there is no "parallel processing."
"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 acinteyyo » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:21 am

Soe Win Htut wrote:pls see : http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/nutshell.pdf (page no.22)

Hi,
page no. 22 is about Nibbana. I don't see any connection to this topic.
Soe Win Htut wrote:pls see : http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/abhidhamma.pdf (page 240)
According to Abhidhamma...

It starts like this "according to abhidhamma..." so what I would like to see is the actual Abhidhamma passage, where this particular view is introduced for the first time.
Soe Win Htut wrote: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”,

Does this have any importance in the Abhidhamma Forum? If yes, what I want to see is the actual Abhidhamma passage in relation to the above.

robertk wrote: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'?

Yes, I'm looking for the "root" instead. I would like to see an Abhidhamma passage from where I may be able to follow how the idea you mentioned has been developed.
It's not enough to quote
Even in the time of a fingersnap many hundred thousand kotis of cittas arise and
cease (1 koti=10 million)
without providing a related Abhidhamma passage which confirms what commentators of the commentaries claim.

I hope I made myself clearer. If not, just ask, I will try again.

mikenz66 wrote:Which is, in part, why I'm interested in examining where these numbers come from.

I'm also interested, where these numbers come from.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Api cāhaṃ, āvuso, imasmiṃyeva byāmamatte kaḷevare, sasaññimhi samanake lokañca paññāpemi lokasamudayañca lokanirodhañca lokanirodhagāminiñca paṭipadan. (AN4.45)

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:57 am

Hi Kirk,
kirk5a wrote:Indeed I do see that this is the Abhidhamma Forum which is why I am asking for the textual evidence that there is no "parallel processing."

The explanations in the CMA seem reasonably clear that one citta arises at a time. E.g in Chapters 4 and 8.
http://books.google.com.au/books?id=hxo ... &q&f=false

I'm not sure how explicit it is in the original Abhidhamma books. Perhaps someone more knowledgeable can provide some quotes.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby robertk » Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:00 am

This is the wisdom of sariputta and the arahats.
what more explantion could you want? or do you want to know how an arahant with patisambhidimagga can perceive these facts?

When panna (wisdom ) is developed to that degree it can know directly this and much more.

Knowing that in the snap of a finger billions of cittas have arisen and passed away one can see that it is imposssible to control or change.
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby robertk » Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:13 am

Yes, I'm looking for the "root" instead. I would like to see an Abhidhamma passage from where I may be able to follow how the idea you mentioned has been developed.
It's not enough to quote
Even in the time of a fingersnap many hundred thousand kotis of cittas arise and
cease (1 koti=10 million) without providing a related Abhidhamma passage which confirms what commentators of the commentaries claim.

I hope I made myself clearer. If not, just ask, I will try again.

acinteyyo

You mean if it is not in the actual Abhidhamma pitaka it is not relevant or you don't believe it?

Ok I have done some study of the Abhidhamma and I can assure you that there is no statement anywhere in it giving the figures that Buddhaghosa does.
So there is no one in the world who can satisfy you question, thus this quote has no weight and I wasted the forums time by putting it up .
I foolishly thought you might have been interested in what Buddhaghosa said, but I guess its wildly anachronistic.
I will try to resist posting in the Abhidhamma forum again.
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby cooran » Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:29 am

Hello Rob,

Please calm down. Your contributions are valued by members of all levels of knowledge of the Teachings. But - discussions are discussions, and with people of many nationalities sometimes things aren't expressed exactly as we would hope.
You would be missed if you withdrew from any forum.

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

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:29 am

Greetings,

OK - let's pause for breath a moment...

- It "is enough" to quote Abhidhamma commentary in the Abhidhamma forum
- It is reasonable to ask whether the commentary "is rooted" in the Abhidhamma Pitaka, but (in the context of this sub-forum) a negative response does not in any way invalidate the commentary.

:rules:

If that's in any way unclear, please PM myself or a mod rather than engage in meta-discussion.

Thank you.

Metta,
Retro. :)
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Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


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One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:48 am

Hi Robert,
robertk wrote:You mean if it is not in the actual Abhidhamma pitaka it is not relevant or you don't believe it?

Certainly not!

But there is a variety of information in the Commentaries, some of it is very precise doctrinal statements, and some of it is relatively mundane, "common sense" statements (such as the explanation in the Visuddhimagga about why it's best to stay to the north or south of a village, not to the east or west, Vism IV.37).
robertk wrote:Ok I have done some study of the Abhidhamma and I can assure you that there is no statement anywhere in it giving the figures that Buddhaghosa does.

Thanks for that.
robertk wrote:So there is no one in the world who can satisfy you question, thus this quote has no weight and I wasted the forums time by putting it up .

It's not that the quote has no weight, but there may well be an extended explanation in the commentary beyond what has been quoted, and I was hoping that someone might know of it.
robertk wrote:I foolishly thought you might have been interested in what Buddhaghosa said, but I guess its wildly anachronistic.

I applied the word anachronistic to the obviously modern idea that a flash of lightning or the blink of an eye should be translated into microseconds. Nothing at all to do with the Commentators.
robertk wrote:I will try to resist posting in the Abhidhamma forum again.

That would be a loss.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby acinteyyo » Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:23 am

Hi robertk,

there's no reason to take things personally. I don't challenge you, but I want to understand how these teachings developed, particularly everything about citta. That's all.
I get the feeling that you may took my posts the wrong way. To be clear, I already mentioned that I don't believe those numbers. I'm just not willing to believe anything before I investigated. But what I believe or not is unimportant and may change through the process of investigation. However in the end my beliefs are not part of this discussion.

robertk wrote:You mean if it is not in the actual Abhidhamma pitaka it is not relevant or you don't believe it?

It doesn't mean that I dismiss anything not in the actual Abhidhamma pitaka. You provided valuable quotes. Because of them I'm interested in knowing how these numbers and ideas developed. What I want to know is what has been told in the Abhidhamma Pitaka that additional commentaries come to those conclusions?
Because of that it's true that
retrofuturist wrote:It "is enough" to quote Abhidhamma commentary in the Abhidhamma forum
but unfortunately it's not enough to answer my question, because I'm asking for the sources in the Abhidhamma Pitaka from where the Abhidhamma commentaries drew their conclusions finally.
retrofuturist wrote:It is reasonable to ask whether the commentary "is rooted" in the Abhidhamma Pitaka, but (in the context of this sub-forum) a negative response does not in any way invalidate the commentary.

naturellement!
robertk wrote:Ok I have done some study of the Abhidhamma and I can assure you that there is no statement anywhere in it giving the figures that Buddhaghosa does.

To what is Buddhaghosa then referring to? Is the speed and amount of cittas in an fingersnap Buddhaghosas idea?
I foolishly thought you might have been interested in what Buddhaghosa said, but I guess its wildly anachronistic.

I don't know what "anachronistic" means, but what Buddhaghosa said is interesting and because of that I'm asking my questions. My knowledge of the Abhidhamma is nearly nothing, so I aks for patience :D

best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Api cāhaṃ, āvuso, imasmiṃyeva byāmamatte kaḷevare, sasaññimhi samanake lokañca paññāpemi lokasamudayañca lokanirodhañca lokanirodhagāminiñca paṭipadan. (AN4.45)

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:31 am

Hmm, sorry for the "anachronistic" label. I used that purely with reference to a lightning flash being a microsecond. In the time of the commentaries, or the Buddha, that would not be know, therefore anachonistic, roughly, mixing up stuff from different times.

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby acinteyyo » Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:40 am

Aaaah okay. Thanks, Mike. Btw I'm also looking forward to answers to your questions.
best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Api cāhaṃ, āvuso, imasmiṃyeva byāmamatte kaḷevare, sasaññimhi samanake lokañca paññāpemi lokasamudayañca lokanirodhañca lokanirodhagāminiñca paṭipadan. (AN4.45)

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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby robertk » Fri Nov 04, 2011 1:59 am

Is the speed and amount of cittas in an fingersnap Buddhaghosas idea?

No, Buddhaghosa was the compiler of the Commentaries which had been handed down since the first council.
As I said in a prior post, it was the wisdom of Sariputta and the arahats and the Buddha too.
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Re: One "citta" at a time

Postby Soe Win Htut » Wed Nov 09, 2011 2:33 am

Alex123 wrote:Here is the problem that I am thinking about:

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. ......

Time is a concept, kālapaññatti,(pg 327 in CMA)


This is a very straight forward understanding for the suspect of the vanishing rate of the citta or those who think that our current mind and body is real or real existence.
The important thing to be understood is that until real enlightenment the citta of our current perception is unreal_fake but just Summuti sacca(created truth).

For those who think that our mind and body of current perception (without real enlightenment) is real and as same as citta, cetasika, and Rupa the Buddha taught as the original truth (ultimate truth or paramatha), Mogok Sayadaw Gyi (Mogok Vipassana) in Myanmar also taught like that below.

.......He taught that the mind and body we are now knowing is not directly similar to citta, cetasika, and Rupa the Buddha taught as the original truth (ultimate truth or paramatha). But they are indirectly concerned with the original truth__ citta, cetasika, and Rupa (paramatha). Our current mind and body seems to be real according to the Samudaya Sacca(Avijja/Sankhara) (i.e. the illusive creation of vanishing nature (Anicca) of the original truth(paramatha) of citta, cetasika, and Rupa.)

.......One mind can arise after the previous mind has already disappeared according to the psychic order or natural law of
"one citta at a time". So one mind can't see the arising of one citta. (i.e seeing of one mind upon the arising of other mind means two minds arise at the same time) ; one mind is specified to arise only when the previous mind has already disappeared, so it has only one chance to see the emptiness of the previous mind. If one see the arising of one mind , its seeing is unreal__fake__fraud but just the created truth(Summuti sacca).......

with 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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