meditation/five khandas

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meditation/five khandas

Postby MoesTavern » Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:29 pm

I've been experimenting with meditation on the five khandas, but falls short when it comes to defining and categorizing certain states of body and mind. I have figured out that this might be due to a personal unwillingness to categorize experience, but I have noticed certain side-effects from my experiment that are positive, and thus would like to continue. I've done some research on the five khandas on the Web, but would now like to hear some colloquial definitions/translations from experienced buddhists, as an aid to the traditional definitions/translations.

Metta Metta

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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby Kare » Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:43 pm

MoesTavern wrote:I've been experimenting with meditation on the five khandas, but falls short when it comes to defining and categorizing certain states of body and mind. I have figured out that this might be due to a personal unwillingness to categorize experience, but I have noticed certain side-effects from my experiment that are positive, and thus would like to continue. I've done some research on the five khandas on the Web, but would now like to hear some colloquial definitions/translations from experienced buddhists, as an aid to the traditional definitions/translations.

Metta Metta

:namaste:


Here is one suggestion:

rupa - the direct sense-impressions that you observe from moment to moment
vedana - the feelings of "like - dislike" that are associated to those sense-impressions
sañña - identifications, you attach a name to the impressions
sankhara - reactions, what those impressions make you want to do
viññana - the differentiating consciousness that knows what is what
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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby daverupa » Tue Nov 08, 2011 10:15 pm

rupa- anything physical
vedana- affective experience
sanna- general cognition
sankhara- processes; e.g. personality, preference, word associations, memories, etcetera ad nauseum
vinnana- never notes itself, it is simply required to note any of the preceding four

MN 43 wrote:For what one feels, that one perceives. What one perceives, that one cognizes. Therefore these qualities are conjoined, not disjoined, and it is not possible, having separated them one from another, to delineate the difference among them.


...so don't waste time trying to note the difference among those three, imo...

...and it might be worthwhile to unpack what you mean by "meditate on them"; I think Tetrad IV of Anapanasati is geared for this.
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Nov 09, 2011 1:14 am

Greetings,

daverupa wrote:...so don't waste time trying to note the difference among those three, imo...

Unless you specifically want to observe this causality at work.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby daverupa » Wed Nov 09, 2011 1:24 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

daverupa wrote:...so don't waste time trying to note the difference among those three, imo...

Unless you specifically want to observe this causality at work.

Metta,
Retro. :)


Do you delineate the difference among them? How can we understand this?
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Nov 09, 2011 2:06 am

Greetings Dave,

daverupa wrote:Do you delineate the difference among them? How can we understand this?

I don't often use the five aggregates schema, so I can't really go into detail other than to say that when the Buddha says, "For what one feels, that one perceives. What one perceives, that one cognizes", I believe he is presenting a (dependently-originating) sequence.

As for myself, I would be more inclined to view such experience via the mutual reinforcement (or "whirlpool") of nama-rupa and consciousness, where:

- rupa is as defined by Kåre above
- sañña (again, as defined by Kåre) is captured under nama

... with vedana addressed a little way downstream.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby ground » Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:10 am

form - all appearances to the senses, inert sense stimuli as such

vedana & viññana - becoming aware of like, dislike and indifference (neutrality mixed with ignorance as a sense of "I" or "mine") regarding appearances in one's sense sphere

sañña & viññana - becoming aware of/discerning particulars, consciously singling out appearances in one's sense sphere, grasping as {this or that}

sankhara - all kinds of impulses and inclinations (including the impulse to name appearances in one's sense sphere and the impulse to direct attention), grasping as such

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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby pegembara » Wed Nov 09, 2011 12:52 pm

Rupa/matter = Form, Nama/mind = Feeling, Perception, Mental formations and Consciousness The 5 khandhas are similar to nama-rupa.

Matter is a good description for rupa and mind for nama. Rupa is always object whereas nama can be both subject and object. Nama can know nama as well as rupa. Mind that can know matter (earth, wind, fire and water elements). Mind can also know mind (feelings, perception, mental formations and consciousness ie. eye, ear, nose, tongue, tactile and mind consciousness as objects).

This mind or consciousness as subject can only be known by its object nama-rupa. Both subject and object are dependently coarisen ie. seer-forms, hearer-sounds, thinker-thoughts. The reality is that there is only the process of seeing, hearing, thinking etc. "I am" seeing, hearing, thinking is an error.



"It's not the case, Kotthita my friend, that name-&-form is self-made, that it is other-made, that it is both self-made & other-made, or that — without self-making or other-making — it arises spontaneously. However, from consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form."

"It's not the case, Kotthita my friend, that consciousness is self-made, that it is other-made, that it is both self-made & other-made, or that — without self-making or other-making — it arises spontaneously. However, from name-&-form as a requisite condition comes consciousness."

"Very well then, Kotthita my friend, I will give you an analogy; for there are cases where it is through the use of an analogy that intelligent people can understand the meaning of what is being said. It is as if two sheaves of reeds were to stand leaning against one another. In the same way, from name-&-form as a requisite condition comes consciousness, from consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form.

"If one were to pull away one of those sheaves of reeds, the other would fall; if one were to pull away the other, the first one would fall. In the same way, from the cessation of name-&-form comes the cessation of consciousness, from the cessation of consciousness comes the cessation of name-&-form.


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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby MoesTavern » Fri Nov 11, 2011 7:26 pm

Thank you for your replies.

quote..and it might be worthwhile to unpack what you mean by "meditate on them" end quote. Yeah exactly... I'm a beginner and also autodidact when it comes to meditation so the question is worthwile. What I mean is that whilst the breath is used as focal point, phenomena that arises during meditation is viewed within the frame of the five khandas. And that's also why I asked for colloquial definitions, since I don't want to confuse :shrug: my mind with pali linguistics – at least not during meditation :-)

Metta Metta

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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby ancientbuddhism » Mon Nov 21, 2011 7:14 pm

Kare wrote:Here is one suggestion:

rupa - the direct sense-impressions that you observe from moment to moment
vedana - the feelings of "like - dislike" that are associated to those sense-impressions
sañña - identifications, you attach a name to the impressions
sankhara - reactions, what those impressions make you want to do
viññana - the differentiating consciousness that knows what is what


The development of wisdom toward release begins at contemplative observation at feeling and the range of mental activity arising there.

This may be of interest.

Insight at Sensations of Feeling
Fingers walk the darkness down
Mind is on the midnight
Gather up the gold you've found
You fool, it's only moonlight.
If you try to take it home
Your hands will turn to butter
You better leave this dream alone
Try to find another. – Townes Van Zandt ‘Lungs’

Secure your own mask before assisting others. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)

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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby Sekha » Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:02 pm

IMO better start at the begining, otherwise there will be frustration. It is not easy to see the arising & passing away of the khandhas. One should start with anapanassati, and all the rest will come about in due course without asking for it when the mind gets calmer, clearer and subtler. This is IMO why you don't find so many descriptions of the khandhas in the scriptures.

However, this might be of interest here:
http://www.suttapitaka.net/sutta/samyut ... 2-079.html

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
Where knowledge ends, religion begins. - B. Disraeli

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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby MoesTavern » Sat Jul 07, 2012 6:09 pm

Two more questions:

* Do the “sankharas” in the Five Khandas have the same meaning as the “sankharas” in Dependent Origination?

* Quote daverupa “sanna”- general cognition, “sankhara” - processes; e.g. personality, preference, word associations, memories, etcetera ad nauseum. End Quote.

Don’t these processes that you list here require intention for them to qualify as “sankharas”? Aren’t they rather “sanna”?

A wise master said that if you don’t ask questions in this world you’ll be reborn as a donkey in the next, so there you go 8-)

Metta.
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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby santa100 » Sat Jul 07, 2012 7:21 pm

The wiki page on Sankhara (ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sa%E1%B9%85kh%C4%81ra ) shows diagrams for the 12 DO and Five Aggregates which might be useful to you. Notice sankhara has 2 meanings. The second active sense of the term is used in both DO and Aggregates. Also notice that as shown in the Aggregates diagram, the aggregates operate together without any "serial/linear" relationship, ie. vinnana arises from other khandhas; and vedana, sanna, and sankhara arise from the contact of vinnana and rupa..
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Re: meditation/five khandas

Postby MoesTavern » Thu Jul 12, 2012 10:34 am

Thank you!

Metta
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