Feelings and Dreams

Discussion of Abhidhamma and related Commentaries

Moderator: Mahavihara moderator

User avatar
cooran
Posts: 8502
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:32 pm
Location: Queensland, Australia

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
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

User avatar
pink_trike
Posts: 1130
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:29 am
Contact:

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.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.

User avatar
gavesako
Posts: 1720
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:16 pm

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:
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

- Theravada texts
- Translations and history of Pali texts
- Sutta translations

User avatar
pink_trike
Posts: 1130
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:29 am
Contact:

Re: Feelings and Dreams

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

I think Einstein postulated parallel planes of simultaneous, variant existence.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.

User avatar
Ben
Posts: 18442
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Location: kanamaluka

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.
Thanks for your cooperation.

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

User avatar
Jechbi
Posts: 1268
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:38 am
Contact:

Re: Feelings and Dreams

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


User avatar
BubbaBuddhist
Posts: 640
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 5:55 am
Location: Knoxville, Tennessee
Contact:

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.
Author of Redneck Buddhism: or Will You Reincarnate as Your Own Cousin?

User avatar
Ngawang Drolma.
Posts: 805
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:38 pm

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:


User avatar
cooran
Posts: 8502
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:32 pm
Location: Queensland, Australia

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
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

User avatar
Ben
Posts: 18442
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Location: kanamaluka

Re: Feelings and Dreams

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

“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

User avatar
Rui Sousa
Posts: 366
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 4:01 pm
Location: London, UK

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?
With Metta


Return to “Abhidhamma”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests

Google Saffron, Theravada Search Engine