Luminious mind

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Re: Luminious mind

Postby ground » Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:06 am

Sherab wrote:Because we need words/terms in order to communicate.

Now you are referring to meaning only?

This did not merely imply meaning:
Sherab wrote:Within a mind, there are different consciousness.


Sherab wrote:I have given the meaning of "mind" as I understand it namely that it is a complex of various consciousness.

A "meaning complex"? Well yes but even in that it is not different from "consciousness" because "consciousness" are differentiated according to some linguistic conventions.

Sherab wrote:This seemed to imply to me that you are asserting that a mind = a consciousness at every moment. If you did not mean this, could you elaborate on what you actually meant?

Based on what I said before I can only say that I can be "conscious" of "being conscious of", i.e. I can directly perceive my "being conscious of" or - a synonym - I can be aware of "being aware of", I can be aware of "being conscious of", I can be conscious of "being aware of". This "being aware of" or "being conscious of" is synonym to "mind" per linguistic convention because I can only perceive what I can perceive. I can conceptualize/think of/fantasize phenomena beyond that but I would not claim these to be valid.

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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Mawkish1983 » Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:12 am

Could I suggest maybe we try to use the pali terms so we all know what is actually being discussed? Maybe I'm a little slow this morning, but I don't know what 'mind' we are actually discussing. Using the Pali words untranslated might help.

Just a thought
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Sherab » Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:35 am

Mawkish1983 wrote:Could I suggest maybe we try to use the pali terms so we all know what is actually being discussed? Maybe I'm a little slow this morning, but I don't know what 'mind' we are actually discussing. Using the Pali words untranslated might help.

Just a thought

I was referring to citta (in my exchanges with TMingyur)
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:42 am

Greetings Sherab,

Sherab wrote:I was referring to citta (in my exchanges with TMingyur)

Presumably the Sutta meaning, rather than the more nuanced Abhidhamma definition of the term?

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: Luminious mind

Postby Mawkish1983 » Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:47 am

So is the 'luminous mind' you're asking about bodhicitta? If not, what word has been translated to 'luminous'? I'm asking so I can read around a bit and maybe (just maybe) usefully contribute to this discussion.
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Mawkish1983 » Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:55 am

Pabhassara?

Edit: Oh, it seems bodhicitta is a non-theravada concept. That's embarassing for me. Reading on wikipedia it seems this bodhicitta is a later non-canonical idea derived from, but different to, pabhassara citta. :focus:
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby cooran » Fri Jul 02, 2010 7:36 am

Hello all,

Bhikkhu Bodhi's translation of this sutta reads:

This mind, O monks, is luminous,but it is defiled by adventitious defilements. note 13 The uninstructed worldling does not understand this as it really is; therefore for him there is no mental development.
This mind, O monks, is luminous, and it is freed from adventitious defilements. The instructed noble disciple understands this as it really is; therefore for him there is mental development.

Note 13: Luminous (pabbhassara.m). AA states that here "the mind" (citta) refers to the bhavanga-citta, the "life-continium" or underlying stream of consciousness which supervenes whenever active consciousness lapses, most notably in deep sleep. The adventitious defilements are greed, hatred and delusion, which appear at a stage of the cognitive process which, in later Buddhist literature, is called javana, "impulsion", AA says that the defilements do not arise simultaneously with the bhavanga, but they "arrive" later, at the phase of javana. The fact that this expression "luminous mind" does not signify any "eternal and pure mind-essence" is evident from the preceding text, in which the mind is said to be extremely fleeting and transitory. The "uninstructed worldling" (assutavaa puthujjana) is one who lacks adequate knowledge of the Dhamma and training in its practice.
p.36 Numerical Discourses of the Buddha An Anthology of Suttas from the Anguttara Nikaya - translanted and edited by Nyanaponika Thera & Bhikkhu Bodhi. (ISBN 0-7425-0404-2 9cl.)

with metta
Chris
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Sherab » Fri Jul 02, 2010 8:11 am

cooran wrote:Note 13: Luminous (pabbhassara.m). AA states that here "the mind" (citta) refers to the bhavanga-citta, the "life-continium" or underlying stream of consciousness which supervenes whenever active consciousness lapses, most notably in deep sleep. The adventitious defilements are greed, hatred and delusion, which appear at a stage of the cognitive process which, in later Buddhist literature, is called javana, "impulsion", AA says that the defilements do not arise simultaneously with the bhavanga, but they "arrive" later, at the phase of javana. The fact that this expression "luminous mind" does not signify any "eternal and pure mind-essence" is evident from the preceding text, in which the mind is said to be extremely fleeting and transitory. The "uninstructed worldling" (assutavaa puthujjana) is one who lacks adequate knowledge of the Dhamma and training in its practice.
p.36 Numerical Discourses of the Buddha An Anthology of Suttas from the Anguttara Nikaya - translanted and edited by Nyanaponika Thera & Bhikkhu Bodhi. (ISBN 0-7425-0404-2 9cl.)

with metta
Chris


From an earlier post by Anicca:

"This statement has engendered a great deal of controversy over the centuries. The commentary maintains that "mind" here refers to the bhavanga-citta, the momentary mental state between periods when the mental stream adverts to objects, but this statement raises more questions than it answers. There is no reference to the bhavanga-citta or the mental stream in any of the suttas (they appear first in an Abhidhamma treatise, the Patthana); and because the commentaries compare the bhavanga-citta to deep sleep, why is it called luminous? And why would the perception of its luminosity be a prerequisite for developing the mind? And further, if "mind" in this discourse means bhavanga-citta, what would it mean to develop the bhavanga-citta?"

Is the equating of citta to bhavanga-citta the most accepted Theravadin interpretation of the verse in the opening post?
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Sherab » Fri Jul 02, 2010 8:14 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Sherab,

Sherab wrote:I was referring to citta (in my exchanges with TMingyur)

Presumably the Sutta meaning, rather than the more nuanced Abhidhamma definition of the term?

Metta,
Retro. :)

I don't know. I am just starting to read the Abhidhammatha Sangaha.
What would be the difference between the sutta meaning and the Abhidhamma meaning?
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 02, 2010 8:17 am

Except where noted mind in following passage translates citta.

It would be better, bhikkhus, for the uninstructed worlding to take as self this body… rather than the mind. For what reason? The body … is seen standing for one year, for two years, for three, four, five, or ten years, for twenty, thirty, forty, or fify, for a hundred years, or even longer. But that which is called 'mind [citta],' 'mentality [mano],' or 'consciousness [vi~n~naana]' by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another. Just as a monkey roaming through a forest grabs hold of one branch, lets that go and grabs another, then lets that go and grans still another, so too that which is called 'mind [citta],' 'mentality [mano],' or 'consciousness [vi~n~naana]' by day and by night arises as one thing and ceases as another. Therein, bhikkhus, the instructed noble disciple attends closely and carefully to dependent origination itself thus: ‘When this exists, that comes to be; with the arising of this that arises….
SN II 94-5

Always frightened is this mind [citta.m],
The mind [mano] is always agitated.
SN I 53

It is a mishap for me … that lust has infested my mind SN I 185


"Then, having known thus, having seen thus, do you know the awareness of other beings, other individuals, having encompassed it with your own awareness? Do you discern a mind with passion as a mind with passion, and a mind without passion as a mind without passion; a mind with aversion as a mind with aversion, and a mind without aversion as a mind without aversion; a mind with delusion as a mind with delusion, and a mind without delusion as a mind without delusion; a restricted mind as a restricted mind, and a scattered mind as a scattered mind; an enlarged mind as an enlarged mind, and an unenlarged mind as an unenlarged mind;an excelled mind [one that is not on the most excellent level] as an excelled mind, and an unexcelled mind as an unexcelled mind; a concentrated mind as a concentrated mind, and an unconcentrated mind as an unconcentrated mind; a released mind as a released mind, and an unreleased mind as an unreleased mind?" SN II 121 http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/su ... 2-070.html


SN 11 226
Praise and blame obsessing the mind
"Thus you should train yourselves: 'We will put aside any gains, offerings, & fame that have arisen; and we will not let any gains, offerings, & fame that have arisen keep our minds consumed.' That's how you should train yourselves." http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/su ... 7-005.html


SN II 271
“He sees a woman there lightly clad or lightly attrired and lust invades his mind.”


SN II 273
“Steady your mind in noble silence, unify your mind in noble silence concentrate your mind in noble silence.


SN V 184
Bhikkhus, I will teach the origination and passing away of the four esatblishments of mindfulness. Listen to that.

And what, bhikkhus, is the origination of the body? With the origination of nutriment there is origination of the body. With the cessation of nutriment there is the passing away of the body.

With the origination of contact there is origination of feeling. With the cessation of contact there is the passing away of feeling.

With the origination of name-and-form there is origination of mind [citta]. With the cessation of name-and-form there is passing away of mind.

With the origination of attention there is origination of phenomena [dhamma]. With the cessation of attention there is passing away of phenomena.


Dhp 13. Just as rain breaks through an ill-thatched house, so passion penetrates an undeveloped mind.

14. Just as rain does not break through a well-thatched house, so passion never penetrates a well-developed mind.

33. Just as a fletcher straightens an arrow shaft, even so the discerning man straightens his mind -- so fickle and unsteady, so difficult to guard.

34. As a fish when pulled out of water and cast on land throbs and quivers, even so is this mind agitated. Hence should one abandon the realm of Mara

35. Wonderful, indeed, it is to subdue the mind, so difficult to subdue, ever swift, and seizing whatever it desires. A tamed mind brings happiness.

36. Let the discerning man guard the mind, so difficult to detect and extremely subtle, seizing whatever it desires. A guarded mind brings happiness.

37. Dwelling in the cave (of the heart), the mind, without form, wanders far and alone. Those who subdue this mind are liberated from the bonds of Mara.

89. Those whose minds have reached full excellence in the factors of enlightenment, who, having renounced acquisitiveness, rejoice in not clinging to things -- rid of cankers, glowing with wisdom, they have attained Nibbana in this very life.

116. Hasten to do good; restrain your mind from evil. He who is slow in doing good, his mind delights in evil.

371. Meditate, O monk! Do not be heedless. Let not your mind whirl on sensual pleasures. Heedless, do not swallow a red-hot iron ball, lest you cry when burning, "O this is painful!"
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Sherab » Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:35 am

The discussion seemed to have gone off track.

Here's the opening post again:

"Luminous, monks, is the mind. And it is defiled by incoming defilements."
"Luminous, monks, is the mind. And it is freed from incoming defilements."
"Luminous, monks, is the mind. And it is defiled by incoming defilements. The uninstructed run-of-the-mill person doesn't discern that as it actually is present, which is why I tell you that -- for the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person -- there is no development of the mind."
"Luminous, monks, is the mind. And it is freed from incoming defilements. The well-instructed noble disciple discerns that as it actually is present, which is why I tell you that -- for the well-instructed noble disciple -- there is development of the mind."

Anguttara Nikaya I.49-52
Pabhassara Suttas

The above verses seem to say that the key to development of the mind is to discern that-as-it-actually-is-present and that there is no development of the mind if there is no such discernment.

Quote from Tiltbillings' post: "With the cessation of name-and-form there is passing away of mind".

Does this mean that the mind (citta) is developed when it (citta) ceases?

If citta ceases how does discernment of that-as-it-actually-is-present occurs?
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:45 am

Greetings Sherab,

It seems to me very much connected with aspects of the...

MN 10 Satipatthana Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

"And how does a monk remain focused on the mind in & of itself? There is the case where a monk, when the mind has passion, discerns that the mind has passion. When the mind is without passion, he discerns that the mind is without passion. When the mind has aversion, he discerns that the mind has aversion. When the mind is without aversion, he discerns that the mind is without aversion. When the mind has delusion, he discerns that the mind has delusion. When the mind is without delusion, he discerns that the mind is without delusion.

"When the mind is constricted, he discerns that the mind is constricted. When the mind is scattered, he discerns that the mind is scattered. When the mind is enlarged, he discerns that the mind is enlarged. When the mind is not enlarged, he discerns that the mind is not enlarged. When the mind is surpassed, he discerns that the mind is surpassed. When the mind is unsurpassed, he discerns that the mind is unsurpassed. When the mind is concentrated, he discerns that the mind is concentrated. When the mind is not concentrated, he discerns that the mind is not concentrated. When the mind is released, he discerns that the mind is released. When the mind is not released, he discerns that the mind is not released.


"There is the case where a monk remains focused on mental qualities in & of themselves with reference to the five hindrances. And how does a monk remain focused on mental qualities in & of themselves with reference to the five hindrances? There is the case where, there being sensual desire present within, a monk discerns that 'There is sensual desire present within me.' Or, there being no sensual desire present within, he discerns that 'There is no sensual desire present within me.' He discerns how there is the arising of unarisen sensual desire. And he discerns how there is the abandoning of sensual desire once it has arisen. And he discerns how there is no future arising of sensual desire that has been abandoned. (The same formula is repeated for the remaining hindrances: ill will, sloth & drowsiness, restlessness & anxiety, and uncertainty.)

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: Luminious mind

Postby Sherab » Fri Jul 02, 2010 10:17 am

Hi Retro,

So when one is well-versed in satipatthana, one should be able to discern the cessation of citta? And that discernment of the cessation of citta is the discernment of that-as-it-actually-is-present?

Sherab

PS, I see satipatthana as the foundation of any practice be it shamatha related or vispassana related.
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby fijiNut » Sat Jul 03, 2010 11:52 am

Hi Sherab,

I was reading an article by Bhikkhu Thannisaro who is a well practiced forest monk, titled "Freedom from Buddha Nature" which I thought might be relevant for you.

here is a small quote from the article:
....If these conditions (defilements of mind) are removed, ignorance will disband.

This is why the Buddha said that the mind is luminous, stained with defilements that come and go. Taken out of context, this statement might be construed as implying that the mind is inherently awakened. But in context the Buddha is simply saying that the mind, once stained, is not permanently stained. When the conditions for the stains are gone, the mind becomes luminous again. But this luminosity is not an awakened nature. As the Buddha states, this luminous mind can be developed. In the scheme of the four noble truths, if something is to be developed it's not the goal; it's part of the path to the goal. After this luminosity has been developed in the advanced stages of concentration, it's abandoned once it has completed its work in helping to pierce through ignorance.....


Full link:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/thanissaro/freedomfrombuddhanature.html

kind regards,
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby m0rl0ck » Sun Jul 04, 2010 1:41 am

TMingyur wrote:There is "mind" if there is "an object of mind" otherwise there is no "mind". It appears as if all this talk about "mind" or "the nature of mind" entails its reification.

Kind regards


How then can mind take itself as an object?
"When you meditate, don't send your mind outside. Don't fasten onto any knowledge at all. Whatever knowledge you've gained from books or teachers, don't bring it in to complicate things. Cut away all preoccupations, and then as you meditate let all your knowledge come from what's going on in the mind. When the mind is quiet, you'll know it for yourself. But you have to keep meditating a lot. When the time comes for things to develop, they'll develop on their own. Whatever you know, have it come from your own mind.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai ... eleft.html
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby jcsuperstar » Sun Jul 04, 2010 3:37 am

m0rl0ck wrote:
TMingyur wrote:There is "mind" if there is "an object of mind" otherwise there is no "mind". It appears as if all this talk about "mind" or "the nature of mind" entails its reification.

Kind regards


How then can mind take itself as an object?


"And how does a monk remain focused on the mind in & of itself? There is the case where a monk, when the mind has passion, discerns that the mind has passion. When the mind is without passion, he discerns that the mind is without passion. When the mind has aversion, he discerns that the mind has aversion. When the mind is without aversion, he discerns that the mind is without aversion. When the mind has delusion, he discerns that the mind has delusion. When the mind is without delusion, he discerns that the mind is without delusion.

"When the mind is constricted, he discerns that the mind is constricted. When the mind is scattered, he discerns that the mind is scattered. When the mind is enlarged, he discerns that the mind is enlarged. When the mind is not enlarged, he discerns that the mind is not enlarged. When the mind is surpassed, he discerns that the mind is surpassed. When the mind is unsurpassed, he discerns that the mind is unsurpassed. When the mind is concentrated, he discerns that the mind is concentrated. When the mind is not concentrated, he discerns that the mind is not concentrated. When the mind is released, he discerns that the mind is released. When the mind is not released, he discerns that the mind is not released.

"In this way he remains focused internally on the mind in & of itself, or externally on the mind in & of itself, or both internally & externally on the mind in & of itself. Or he remains focused on the phenomenon of origination with regard to the mind, on the phenomenon of passing away with regard to the mind, or on the phenomenon of origination & passing away with regard to the mind. Or his mindfulness that 'There is a mind' is maintained to the extent of knowledge & remembrance. And he remains independent, unsustained by (not clinging to) anything in the world. This is how a monk remains focused on the mind in & of itself.


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.010.than.html
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby ground » Sun Jul 04, 2010 7:32 am

jcsuperstar wrote:
m0rl0ck wrote:
TMingyur wrote:There is "mind" if there is "an object of mind" otherwise there is no "mind". It appears as if all this talk about "mind" or "the nature of mind" entails its reification.

Kind regards


How then can mind take itself as an object?


"And how does a monk remain focused on the mind in & of itself?
...
This is how a monk remains focused on the mind in & of itself.


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.010.than.html


Thank you, jcsuperstar, for pointing that out.

However still I cannot understand how my remark (quoted by m0rl0ck) prompted m0rl0ck's question.

I am missing the logical connection between "reification of mind" and the capacity of what is merely called "mind" to take as an object its own awareness of objects.

Perhaps mere linguistic practices and grammar are the causes of misunderstandings?

"Mind (or consciousness) is conscious of an object" implies that there would be an agent ("Mind" or "consciousness") who does the action of "being conscious of". But this is merely a conceptual error caused by linguistic practices and grammar. If there is no "being conscious of", i.e. no object, there is no "mind" (or no "consciousness") because "being conscious of" is what is called "consciousness" (or "mind") if we restrict valid phenomena to what is directly perceptible. If you do not accept this restriction then you may acctually assert all phenomena you can think of. Of course one may think of a "consciousness"/"mind" that at one time does the action of "being conscious of" and at another time does not do this action but still "is there". But you may only think that sort of "consciousness"/"mind". However you can never directly perceive a "consciousness"/"mind" not doing the action of "being conscious of".


Kind regards
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Goedert » Sun Jul 04, 2010 2:45 pm

Friends,

I have some questions to put in the discussion.

Reply as you wish.

1) Can we mesure the mind?
2) Has the mind a color?
3) Is there any place that we can say "Here it is"?
4) What is the conceit of mind?
5) What is the relation with the mind and the agregates?
6) The cultivation of samadhi and mindfullness bring calmness to the volition of mind?
7) When the mind is tranquility what can one expirience?
8) This is state of mind are called luminous or not?
9) Can we mesure this luminous?
10) Has this luminous a color?
11) What is the conceit of luminous?
12) What is the benefit of this luminous over the agregates and volition?
King regards.
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Mawkish1983 » Sun Jul 04, 2010 3:12 pm

I think a lot of these questions miss the point (the questions seem to contradict anatta to me), and through insight alone can the truth be known.
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Re: Luminious mind

Postby Mawkish1983 » Sun Jul 04, 2010 3:13 pm

Edit: would the moderators mind deleting this post? My previous one posted twice. Sorry.
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