Feelings and Dreams

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Feelings and Dreams

Postby cooran » Wed Apr 29, 2009 7:50 am

Hello all,

I was thinking about citta being one moment of consciousness. My understanding of the Teachings is that the whole world consists of just those realities that are experienced through the sense doors in each brief moment of citta - that there is no future lying waiting, and no past stored up anywhere - only the present cittas.

This is where I have a difficulty. I occasionally experience things that have a connection with future happenings for myself and for others. I can't see any explanation of these things I know to be true, within my present understanding of Buddhism. And yet they do happen. These things fall into two categories - feelings, and dreams. They are not particularly earthshaking - there seems to be no purpose served by having them.

The feelings consist of occasionally (often only yearly or less frequently) being suddenly affected by a feeling of such great strength, with a certain 'flavour' that I have come to recognise as making it 'one of those' feelings. The pattern I have developed through my life is to think over each of my loved ones until a change in the feeling indicates it is connected to that person. I wait. Within a day, maybe two, a significantly unhappy (most often) or happy event unexpectedly and unpredictably happens to that person. Nothing clearer than that. It is never anyone I am worrying about or about whom I have any information that would lead to an expectation that they would experience this significant event.

Dreams happen at about the same frequency. An example from the past: Once, just after I finished high school, and before I started work, I had a dream. In the dream I saw a workplace and various men and women whom I liked or disliked or was anxious about. It was quite a boring dream, with one person being particularly unpleasant. There was something about the 'flavour' of the dream that imprinted it on my memory, that felt unusual, nothing like the feel of 'ordinary' dreams which are soon forgotten.
Six months later, I obtained a position in the Government, and started work in exactly that workplace It was literally 'a seeing into the future'. Everything in the dream, the layout and furnishings of the physical surroundings, and the faces and physical appearance of the people, and their characters, was exactly as in real life. I never saw them until six months after the dream. How does this integrate with Teachings of the Abhidhamma and Buddhism generally? And if it doesn't ....?

metta
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby pink_trike » Wed Apr 29, 2009 3:48 pm

Hi Chris,

The first experience you describe was well known in most older cultures as "having the sight", 6th sense, or as my elder relatives in rural Minnesota would say... "I had a feeling" with a shrug. I've had experiences like this most of my life. I suspect that they something to do with long periods of stillness and quiet (as my rural relatives experienced, many living on farms with no phones or television/radio for decades) and that ongoing meditative experience may contribute to far-reaching sensing abilities, by somehow opening windows in the mind that remain closed in busy, distractive environments. This ability appears to have been taken for granted in premodern cultures, although it was recognized that not everyone had the sight.

I've infrequently have the second type of experience that you describe, and have no explanation for it.

I'd also be interested in knowing how this fits with the teachings.
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby gavesako » Wed Apr 29, 2009 8:18 pm

Perhaps the Sarvastivadins were right after all: all dharmas (past, present, future) do possess an "existence". :reading:
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby pink_trike » Wed Apr 29, 2009 8:34 pm

I think Einstein postulated parallel planes of simultaneous, variant existence.
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby Ben » Wed Apr 29, 2009 10:23 pm

Hi all

Please keep in mind that this is the Abhidhamma forum and that that posts should reference the abhidhamma.
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby Jechbi » Thu Apr 30, 2009 3:51 pm

Well, here's a reference, tho it's not from the Abhidhamma:
From the Rohitassa Sutta:
"I tell you, friend, that it is not possible by traveling to know or see or reach a far end of the cosmos where one does not take birth, age, die, pass away, or reappear. But at the same time, I tell you that there is no making an end of suffering & stress without reaching the end of the cosmos. Yet it is just within this fathom-long body, with its perception & intellect, that I declare that there is the cosmos, the origination of the cosmos, the cessation of the cosmos, and the path of practice leading to the cessation of the cosmos."

Fundamentally, the OP is raising a question about Anatta. These dreams and feelings and corresponding life experiences probably do not divide into "internal" and "external" quite as neatly as we ordinarily imagine. The conditions for future experiences are present already in our kamma here and now. Personally, I don't see a conflict in integrating these experiences with teachings of the Abhidhamma and Buddhism generally.

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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby BubbaBuddhist » Thu Apr 30, 2009 3:57 pm

I'm not sure that precognition is necessarily strictly a function confined to citta. It may be a function of reality; that information or events create "ripples" both forward and backward. Of course, sensing these ripples is a function of citta, which would keep it in place of Abhidhammic phenomena. If the phenomena involves you, it would seem more likely you would be more attuned to the ripple than someone else. I'm just speculating here.

Seems like this would be addressed somewhere, as clairvoyance and precognition were well-known even in Buddha's day.
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Thu Apr 30, 2009 4:12 pm

According to Abhidhamma, moments of consciousness continue as we sleep, right? We tend to think that our time spent sleeping is irrelevant, but the mind is actually continuing on, doing its thing during that time. I'm not telling, just asking :smile:
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby cooran » Thu Apr 30, 2009 9:06 pm

Hello all,

Further search among the Suttas and writings of Theravada teachers has led me to references showing that significant future happenings can be the subject of dreams .... but I'm not sure my feelings and dreams fit within this category.

AN 5.196 Supina Sutta Dreams
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Dreams and Their Significance in the Chapter 17. Divination and Dreams
http://mail.saigon.com/~anson/ebud/what ... ev/321.htm

But even so, from the Abhidhammic perspective, how can there be prophetic dreams? What is the mechanism?
Is the future set? .... would this point to a suggestion that the future isn't the product of our actions, but already exists?

metta
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby Ben » Thu Apr 30, 2009 11:19 pm

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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby Rui Sousa » Fri May 01, 2009 4:55 pm

Are the objects of present cittas time bound?

Can a past citta be an object of a present citta, can a future citta be an object of a present citta?
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Re: Feelings and Dreams

Postby Vinayanandabk » Wed May 27, 2009 6:10 am

Hi all friends,

Rui Sousa wrote:Are the objects of present cittas time bound?

Can a past citta be an object of a present citta, can a future citta be an object of a present citta?

[quote="Rui Sousa"]Are the objects of present cittas time bound?

Before talking about the objects of Citta i would like to remind that it's quite apparent in Buddhist teachings that we, indeed, live in present only. The commentery to Upaniya Sutta in Sagathavagga SN states that " A conscious moment that lived in past, does not live, will not live; a conscious moment that will live in future, does not live, did not live; a conscious moment that lives,did not live, will not live."

yes, there are 67 different types of citta that arise in the Mind-door Process can cognize or take an object ( 89 types of citta, 52 types of Cetasika, 28 kinds of Rupa) that belongs to any of the three time periods - past, present or future - or one that is independent of time (Kalavimutta) which indicates to Nibbana and Concepts. see ...( A Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma, Chapter III Compendium of Miscellaneous, p. 137)

those who are bit familiar with Abhidhammathasangaha of either venerable Narada or Bhikkhu Bodhi's revised version will be easier to understand this facts.

With Metta

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