Does consciousness exist?

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chownah
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by chownah »

retrofuturist wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:23 am Greetings cappuccino,
cappuccino wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:09 am
retrofuturist wrote: a failure to investigate and understand what abhisaṅkhata-viññāṇa and anidassana-viññāṇa mean.
constructed by the mind?

Non-manifestative consciousness?
Yes, and yes. If these modes of consciousness are understood, questions such as that posed above by Alfa and Dinsdale would not need to be asked.

For anyone who still thinks that the cessation of viññāṇa would lead one to being deaf, dumb and blind, I refer them to AN 10.6 which refutes such an erroneous conclusion.

Metta,
Paul. :)
Great sutta! Thanks for bringing it. Also, AN10.7 which is also available at your link.
In fact, I did a search of "percipient" at Access to Insight and found a few really good suttas with different ways of looking at this.
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by Pondera »

The posted sutta also delineates what rupa jhana is. Ie. earth, water, fire and wind.
“Monk, the property of light, the property of beauty, the property of the dimension of the infinitude of space, the property of the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness, the property of the dimension of nothingness: These properties are to be reached as perception attainments.[2] The property of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception is to be reached as a remnant-of-fabrications attainment. The property of the cessation of feeling & perception is to be reached as a cessation attainment."[3]

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by alfa »

cappuccino wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:09 am
retrofuturist wrote: a failure to investigate and understand what abhisaṅkhata-viññāṇa and anidassana-viññāṇa mean.
constructed by the mind?

Non-manifestative consciousness?
How is this different from the advaita school of thought that also says absolute reality is unmanifest consciousness?
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cappuccino
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by cappuccino »

absolute reality?

do they even know what they're saying?
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by sentinel »

cappuccino wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:29 am
Bhante, could a bhikkhu obtain such a state of concentration that … he would not be percipient of X Y Z … but he would still be percipient?”

“He could, Ānanda.” AN 10.6
OK
He would obtain a state of concentration, BUT , he WOULD NOT be PERCIPIENT !

Meaning ?
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by Spiny Norman »

retrofuturist wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:22 am Greetings,
alfa wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:16 am If nirvana is the cessation of consciousness, then how is it different from a stone-like existence? Isn't it like saying we will be like inert objects once we attain nirvana?
No, this merely reflects a misunderstanding of what viññāṇa is in the Buddha's teaching, and a failure to investigate and understand what abhisaṅkhata-viññāṇa and anidassana-viññāṇa mean.

Metta,
Paul. :)
In the suttas vinnana is basically the awareness of sense-objects. If you think this is a misunderstanding, then could you please explain why?
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by Spiny Norman »

retrofuturist wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:23 am For anyone who still thinks that the cessation of viññāṇa would lead one to being deaf, dumb and blind, I refer them to AN 10.6 which refutes such an erroneous conclusion.
:redherring:

AN10.6 describes a meditative state, and not the cessation of vinnana.

If you are proposing that vinnana ceases, then please explain what replaces it. How exactly is one still percipient if vinnana ceases?
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by retrofuturist »

Greetings Dinsdale,
Dinsdale wrote:In the suttas vinnana is basically the awareness of sense-objects. If you think this is a misunderstanding, then could you please explain why?
To answer your question, I'll need to understand how you understand "sense-objects", so I will need you to first answer this first. Here is an extract from the Bahiya Sutta...
Ud 1.10 wrote:"Then, Bāhiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen. In reference to the heard, only the heard. In reference to the sensed, only the sensed. In reference to the cognized, only the cognized. That is how you should train yourself. When for you there will be only the seen in reference to the seen, only the heard in reference to the heard, only the sensed in reference to the sensed, only the cognized in reference to the cognized, then, Bāhiya, there is no you in connection with that. When there is no you in connection with that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two. This, just this, is the end of stress."
You say, "In the suttas vinnana is basically the awareness of sense-objects". Are there any "sense-objects" described in the above passage?

Metta,
Paul. :)
"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"It is natural that one who knows and sees things as they really are is disenchanted and dispassionate." (AN 10.2)

"Overcome the liar by truth." (Dhp 223)
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by retrofuturist »

Greetings Dinsdale,
Dinsdale wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:30 am AN10.6 describes a meditative state, and not the cessation of vinnana.
Erm... it's a meditative state attained through the cessation of viññāṇa, and the absence of abhisaṅkhata-viññāṇa. :?
Dinsdale wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:30 am If you are proposing that vinnana ceases, then please explain what replaces it. How exactly is one still percipient if vinnana ceases?
This has already been answered here.

That said, such a way of regarding, as you've done above, is not in keeping with the Dhamma of the noble ones...
SN 22.47 wrote:"The five faculties, monks, continue as they were. And with regard to them the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones abandons ignorance and gives rise to clear knowing. Owing to the fading of ignorance and the arising of clear knowing, (the thoughts) — 'I am,' 'I am this,' 'I shall be,' 'I shall not be,' 'I shall be possessed of form,' 'I shall be formless,' 'I shall be percipient (conscious),' 'I shall be non-percipient,' and 'I shall be neither percipient nor non-percipient' — do not occur to him."
Metta,
Paul. :)
"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"It is natural that one who knows and sees things as they really are is disenchanted and dispassionate." (AN 10.2)

"Overcome the liar by truth." (Dhp 223)
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by alfa »

retrofuturist wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:34 am Greetings Dinsdale,
Dinsdale wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:30 am AN10.6 describes a meditative state, and not the cessation of vinnana.
Erm... it's a meditative state attained through the cessation of viññāṇa, and the absence of abhisaṅkhata-viññāṇa. :?
Dinsdale wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:30 am If you are proposing that vinnana ceases, then please explain what replaces it. How exactly is one still percipient if vinnana ceases?
This has already been answered here.

That said, such a way of regarding, as you've done above, is not in keeping with the Dhamma of the noble ones...
SN 22.47 wrote:"The five faculties, monks, continue as they were. And with regard to them the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones abandons ignorance and gives rise to clear knowing. Owing to the fading of ignorance and the arising of clear knowing, (the thoughts) — 'I am,' 'I am this,' 'I shall be,' 'I shall not be,' 'I shall be possessed of form,' 'I shall be formless,' 'I shall be percipient (conscious),' 'I shall be non-percipient,' and 'I shall be neither percipient nor non-percipient' — do not occur to him."
Metta,
Paul. :)
How is this different from Hindu advaita (which posits a pure consciousness without features or adjuncts)?
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by Spiny Norman »

retrofuturist wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:34 am Erm... it's a meditative state attained through the cessation of viññāṇa, and the absence of abhisaṅkhata-viññāṇa. :?
AN10.6 is still describing a temporary meditative experience. It it is not describing a general or final cessation of vinnana, which is what you appear to be proposing in the context of DO.
retrofuturist wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:34 am
Dinsdale wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:30 am If you are proposing that vinnana ceases, then please explain what replaces it. How exactly is one still percipient if vinnana ceases?
This has already been answered here.Paul. :)
Sorry but I don't see an answer there. Perhaps you could just answer my question in a straightforward way? Are you proposing that vinnana completely ceases and is "replaced" by consciousness without surface? Or what, exactly?

In the suttas vinnana is just awareness of sense-objects. For example eye-consciousness arises in dependence upon ability to see, and something to see. Are you proposing that eye-consciousness ceases for the Arahant, and if so, how exactly does the Arahant then see?
Again, a straightforward answer to a straightforward question would be appreciated.
Last edited by Spiny Norman on Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by Spiny Norman »

retrofuturist wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:31 am
Ud 1.10 wrote:"Then, Bāhiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen. In reference to the heard, only the heard. In reference to the sensed, only the sensed. In reference to the cognized, only the cognized. That is how you should train yourself. When for you there will be only the seen in reference to the seen, only the heard in reference to the heard, only the sensed in reference to the sensed, only the cognized in reference to the cognized, then, Bāhiya, there is no you in connection with that. When there is no you in connection with that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two. This, just this, is the end of stress."
You say, "In the suttas vinnana is basically the awareness of sense-objects". Are there any "sense-objects" described in the above passage?
:redherring:

This passage is not about the mechanics of vinnana, but about the cessation of self-view.

I suppose you could say that "the seen", "the heard", etc. refer to sense-objects, but you are comparing apples and oranges.
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by cappuccino »

it's speculation, but if I may speculate

keep in mind, stress is all we know

the absence of stress, is what we seek

just to exist, without stress
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by retrofuturist »

Greetings,
alfa wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:15 am How is this different from Hindu advaita (which posits a pure consciousness without features or adjuncts)?
I don't know as I've never investigated.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"It is natural that one who knows and sees things as they really are is disenchanted and dispassionate." (AN 10.2)

"Overcome the liar by truth." (Dhp 223)
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Re: Does consciousness exist?

Post by Circle5 »

We have a sutta where Buddha speaks directly about this:
At Sāvatthī. “Mendicants, I don’t argue with the world; it’s the world that argues with me. When your speech is in line with the teaching you don’t argue with anyone in the world. What the astute agree on as not existing, I too say does not exist. What the astute agree on as existing, I too say exists.

And what do the astute agree on as not existing, which I too say does not exist? Form that is permanent, everlasting, eternal, and imperishable. Feeling … Perception … Choices … Consciousness that is permanent, everlasting, eternal, and imperishable. This is what the astute agree on as not existing, which I too say does not exist.

And what do the astute agree on as existing, which I too say exists? Form that is impermanent, suffering, and perishable. Feeling … Perception … Choices … Consciousness that is impermanent, suffering, and perishable. This is what the astute agree on as existing, which I too say exists.

There is a temporal phenomenon in the world that the Realized One understands and comprehends. Then he explains, teaches, asserts, establishes, clarifies, analyzes, and reveals it.

And what is that temporal phenomenon in the world? Form is a temporal phenomenon in the world that the Realized One understands and comprehends. Then he explains, teaches, asserts, establishes, clarifies, analyzes, and reveals it.

This being so, what can I do about a foolish ordinary person, blind and sightless, who does not know or see? Feeling … Perception … Choices … Consciousness is a temporal phenomenon in the world that the Realized One understands and comprehends. Then he explains, teaches, asserts, establishes, clarifies, analyzes, and reveals it.

This being so, what can I do about a foolish ordinary person like retrofuturist, blind and sightless, who does not know or see?

Suppose there was a blue water lily, or a pink or white lotus. Though it sprouted and grew in the water, it would rise up above the water and stand with no water clinging to it. In the same way, though I was born and grew up in the world, I live having mastered the world, and the world does not cling to me.”
https://suttacentral.net/sn22.94/en/sujato
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