The stilling of all fabrications?

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Spiny Norman
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The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by Spiny Norman »

What do you think "the stilling of all fabrications" refers to in the passage below?

Does it refer to the cessation of the sankharas nidana in dependent origination, ie volitional formations? Or does it refer to a calming of sankharas, and if so, which sankharas?

"And what is the perception of dispassion? There is the case where a monk — having gone to the wilderness, to the shade of a tree, or to an empty building — reflects thus: 'This is peace, this is exquisite — the stilling of all fabrications, the relinquishment of all acquisitions, the ending of craving, dispassion, Unbinding.' This is called the perception of dispassion."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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SarathW
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by SarathW »

To me, it sounds like the stilling of Vitakka and Vicara.
ie: He is in the second Jhana.
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R1111 = rightviewftw
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by R1111 = rightviewftw »

Fabrications are of 3Cs, stilling of all fabrications is the Cessation of the Aggregates [Suffering]. Perception of the dispasion which brings about the cessation is the reflection on the vision and knowledge of Release[Unbinding]. In other words, Nibbana is the answer to the OP question.
freedom
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by freedom »

As I understand, it is the volitional formations in dependent origination: the stilling of bodily, verbal, and mental volitional formation from all experiences. With the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering. That's why "This is peace, this is exquisite."

Because volitional formations is defined as : bodily, verbal and mental volitional formation, we can see that it comes from name-and-form (nama-rupa). With volitional formation as condition, consciousness. This is why name-and-form can loop-back to consciousness and create endless loop of sufferings. Moreover, due to ignorance, volitional formations arise when contacting with experiences from the six senses (which are from name-and-form). With wisdom (or the cessation of ignorance), cessation of volitional formations (or the stilling of volition formations) -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering.

The interesting point is that the relationship between name-and-form -> volitional formations is not a dependent origination relationship. Therefore, it is not stable and fixed. It is breakable! Otherwise, there is no way we can break or still the volitional formations. So, we can use wisdom to still the volitional formations that come from our experiences and make an end to sufferings.
One should not be negligent of discernment, should guard the truth, be devoted to relinquishment, and train only for calm - MN 140.
santa100
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by santa100 »

Spiny Norman wrote:What do you think "the stilling of all fabrications" refers to in the passage below?
Ven. Bodhi's version is a bit clearer:
AN 10.60 wrote:And what, Ānanda, is the perception of dispassion? Here, having gone to the forest, to the root of a tree, or to an empty hut, a bhikkhu reflects thus: ‘This is peaceful, this is sublime, that is, the stilling of all activities, the relinquishment of all acquisitions, the destruction of craving, dispassion, nibbāna.’ This is called the perception of dispassion.
So the stilling, the relinquishment, the destruction... all refer to Nibbana. His note further provides references in the Vism for more details:
Both this and the following perception are reflective contemplations on nibbana. In the classical scheme of forty meditation subjects, they can be subsumed under the "recollection of peace" (upasamanussati), explained at Vism 293-94, Ppn 8:245-51.
Spiny Norman
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by Spiny Norman »

R1111 wrote:Fabrications are of 3Cs, stilling of all fabrications is the Cessation of the Aggregates [Suffering].
Do you mean cessation of the clinging aggregates? I'm thinking of the Khanda sutta, where clinging aggregates ( = dukkha ) appear to be a subset of the aggregates generally. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

I think complete cessation of the aggregates would be the complete cessation of experience, aka death.

Another possibility here would be cessation of the sankharas aggregate, or of conceiving ( see MN1 ).
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Spiny Norman
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by Spiny Norman »

freedom wrote:As I understand, it is the volitional formations in dependent origination: the stilling of bodily, verbal, and mental volitional formation from all experiences. With the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering. That's why "This is peace, this is exquisite."
Yes, could be, but what do you think the stilling of volitional formations would look like, practically speaking? Does it mean we would stop making unskillful decisions based on craving, aversion and ignorance? I think traditionally volitional formations are seen as equivalent to kamma, but there seem to be different ideas about it.
Last edited by Spiny Norman on Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Spiny Norman
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by Spiny Norman »

And does anyone know what this bit means: "the relinquishment of all acquisitions"?
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BasementBuddhist
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by BasementBuddhist »

Spiny Norman wrote:
freedom wrote:As I understand, it is the volitional formations in dependent origination: the stilling of bodily, verbal, and mental volitional formation from all experiences. With the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering. That's why "This is peace, this is exquisite."
Yes, could be, but what do you think the stilling of volitional formations would look like, practically speaking? Is volition about making decisions?
The Buddha said that Volitional formations are our tendancies, intentions, habits, patterns. He says this when talking about dependent-origination in the Samyutta Nikaya. Basically you can look at it in two ways: You can look at it as the things you are prone to in this life, the things you do without thinking, the habits you have you know about, the things you don't realize you do but do, the things you mean to do or plan to do.

The Buddha says there are Three types of volitional formation: Verbal, Physical, and mental.

You can also see it from a cosmic perspective: Intention is what kamma is. Your intentions bear positive or negative results.

I learned this just today reading the Buddhist scriptures.
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by Spiny Norman »

BasementBuddhist wrote:
Spiny Norman wrote:
freedom wrote:As I understand, it is the volitional formations in dependent origination: the stilling of bodily, verbal, and mental volitional formation from all experiences. With the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering. That's why "This is peace, this is exquisite."
Yes, could be, but what do you think the stilling of volitional formations would look like, practically speaking? Is volition about making decisions?
The Buddha said that Volitional formations are our tendancies, intentions, habits, patterns. He says this when talking about dependent-origination in the Samyutta Nikaya. Basically you can look at it in two ways: You can look at it as the things you are prone to in this life, the things you do without thinking, the habits you have you know about, the things you don't realize you do but do, the things you mean to do or plan to do.

The Buddha says there are Three types of volitional formation: Verbal, Physical, and mental.

You can also see it from a cosmic perspective: Intention is what kamma is. Your intentions bear positive or negative results.

I learned this just today reading the Buddhist scriptures.
I agree kamma is about intention, but there is Right Intention and "wrong" intention, "bright" kamma and "dark" kamma.

The stilling of habitual activity is an interesting possibility, but is habitual activity always unskillful? If for example somebody is in the habit of donating to charities, or being kind to people, or whatever.
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BasementBuddhist
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by BasementBuddhist »

Spiny Norman wrote: I agree kamma is about intention, but there is Right Intention and "wrong" intention, "bright" kamma and "dark" kamma.

The stilling of habitual activity is an interesting possibility, but is habitual activity always unskillful? If for example somebody is in the habit of donating to charities, or being kind to people, or whatever.
To make sure we are on the same page, how are you defining habit?
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BasementBuddhist
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by BasementBuddhist »

freedom wrote:As I understand, it is the volitional formations in dependent origination: the stilling of bodily, verbal, and mental volitional formation from all experiences. With the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering. That's why "This is peace, this is exquisite."

Because volitional formations is defined as : bodily, verbal and mental volitional formation, we can see that it comes from name-and-form (nama-rupa). With volitional formation as condition, consciousness. This is why name-and-form can loop-back to consciousness and create endless loop of sufferings. Moreover, due to ignorance, volitional formations arise when contacting with experiences from the six senses (which are from name-and-form). With wisdom (or the cessation of ignorance), cessation of volitional formations (or the stilling of volition formations) -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering.

The interesting point is that the relationship between name-and-form -> volitional formations is not a dependent origination relationship. Therefore, it is not stable and fixed. It is breakable! Otherwise, there is no way we can break or still the volitional formations. So, we can use wisdom to still the volitional formations that come from our experiences and make an end to sufferings.
Can I ask why you think that volitional formations appear again after contact? According to Dependent origination and the suttas, Feelings arise from contact, not Volitional Formations. Either Pain/pleasure/neutral. From those craving. From those clinging. From that Existence. From that Birth. From that Aging-and-death.

I'm only asking because I'm intensely studying the Suttas right now, and if there is something I'm not getting, I want to understand it fully so that I may progress down the path.
R1111 = rightviewftw
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by R1111 = rightviewftw »

Spiny Norman wrote:
R1111 wrote:Fabrications are of 3Cs, stilling of all fabrications is the Cessation of the Aggregates [Suffering].
Do you mean cessation of the clinging aggregates? I'm thinking of the Khanda sutta, where clinging aggregates ( = dukkha ) appear to be a subset of the aggregates generally. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

I think complete cessation of the aggregates would be the complete cessation of experience, aka death.

Another possibility here would be cessation of the sankharas aggregate, or of conceiving ( see MN1 ).
All of it ceases
"What is the difference between one who is dead, who has completed his time, and a monk who has attained the cessation of perception & feeling?"

"In the case of the one who is dead, who has completed his time, his bodily fabrications have ceased & subsided, his verbal fabrications ... his mental fabrications have ceased & subsided, his vitality is exhausted, his heat subsided, & his faculties are scattered. But in the case of a monk who has attained the cessation of perception & feeling, his bodily fabrications have ceased & subsided, his verbal fabrications ... his mental fabrications have ceased & subsided, his vitality is not exhausted, his heat has not subsided, & his faculties are exceptionally clear. This is the difference between one who is dead, who has completed his time, and a monk who has attained the cessation of perception & feeling."
It is quite a lot like dying actually in sense that "the connection" with the body[sense doors] & the world is ceased, further experience is non arising, instead the Deathless[Unmade Element] is realized until the Aggregates arise anew.
freedom
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by freedom »

Spiny Norman wrote:
freedom wrote:As I understand, it is the volitional formations in dependent origination: the stilling of bodily, verbal, and mental volitional formation from all experiences. With the cessation of volitional formations, cessation of consciousness -> cessation of this whole mass of suffering. That's why "This is peace, this is exquisite."
Yes, could be, but what do you think the stilling of volitional formations would look like, practically speaking? Does it mean we would stop making unskillful decisions based on craving, aversion and ignorance? I think traditionally volitional formations are seen as equivalent to kamma, but there seem to be different ideas about it
As I understand, either deliberately or undeliberately by oneself or from another, when there is a body, with bodily volition (intention), pleasure and pain arises internally. When there is speech, with verbal volition, pleasure and pain arises internally. When there is intellect, with mental volition, pleasure and pain arises internally.

But with the remainderless fading away and cessation of ignorance that body does not exist, that speech does not exist, that mind (intellect) does not exist. This is the stilling of volitional formations. SN12.25

In meditation practice, we can see in the first jhana, speech has ceased -> verbal volition is stilled. In second jhana, thought and examination have ceased -> mental volition is stilling. In fourth jhana or above when there is no longer any experience of the body -> bodily volition is stilled (even if the body is still there and alive).

For one who has attained the cessation of perception and feeling, mental volition is stilled. SN36.11

In normal daily activities, we will need to cut off the delight in those volition formations. In our speeches or from others' speeches, we do not delight in those verbal volitions (either pleasure or painful). In our bodies or others', we do not delight in those bodily volitions(either pleasure or painful)...

In other word, To still volition formations we will need to cut off all intentions from body, speech and mind. What are our intentions pointing to? Whatever we delight in.
I think traditionally volitional formations are seen as equivalent to kamma
Yes, I think volitional formations is kamma. Kamma is intention from body, speech and mind.
One should not be negligent of discernment, should guard the truth, be devoted to relinquishment, and train only for calm - MN 140.
freedom
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Re: The stilling of all fabrications?

Post by freedom »

Spiny Norman wrote:And does anyone know what this bit means: "the relinquishment of all acquisitions"?
That means we need to give up everything that has the "my".
One should not be negligent of discernment, should guard the truth, be devoted to relinquishment, and train only for calm - MN 140.
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