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Re: [dsg] Re: What is "Imagination" from the Abhidhamma perspective?

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  • sarah abbott
    Hi Chris & all, ... .... S: I think this is an entirely different subject. The patisambhidas refer to the knowledges developed with insight, the Buddha having
    Message 1 of 18 , Apr 2, 2010
      Hi Chris & all,

      --- On Fri, 2/4/10, Christine <cjforsyth1@...> wrote:
      >Thank you for your post - much appreciated. It has been put to me to consider the 4 patisambhidas (analytical knowledges), one of which is "patibhana" which means something like imaginative wit in using language, coming up with illustrations and similies.

      >What do you think?
      ....
      S: I think this is an entirely different subject. The patisambhidas refer to the knowledges developed with insight, the Buddha having the highest degree of all four. In brief, they are as I recall:

      1. attha patisambhida- knowledge of the deep meaning of all aspects of the Dhamma

      2. dhamma patisambhida - knowledge of the causes and condiitons for all dhammas inc. the understanding of kamma and vipaka (knowledge of all kammas and vipakas in the Buddha's case).

      3. nirutti patisambhida - knowledge of the meaning of language and right words for the accumulations of the listeners. If we hear 'vedana', is it just a word, a label, or is it a condition for the understanding of the reality right now?

      4. pa.tibhaana patisambhida - (the one you refer to) is knowledge with regard to the first three. Because of the great wisdom, there's the ability understand and answer all Dhamma points appropriately. Again, of course, the Buddha had the greatest patisambhidas and could therefore use the most helpful illustrations and similes.

      I don't think "imaginative wit" as we use such an expression conventionally has anything to do with this last (or any) of the patisambhidas, though. The patisambhidas have nothing to do with attachment and papancas, as discussed.

      This is the difficulty of taking a term like 'imagination' and asking for an Abhidhamma explanation, isn't it? Easier to start with the Abhidhamma explanations.....:).

      An interesting discussion. What else has been "put to you" from the texts under the "imagination umbrella"?

      Metta

      Sarah
      =========
    • scottduncan2
      Dear Sarah and Chris, Regarding: S: ...This is the difficulty of taking a term like imagination and asking for an Abhidhamma explanation, isn t it? Easier
      Message 2 of 18 , Apr 2, 2010
        Dear Sarah and Chris,

        Regarding:

        S: "...This is the difficulty of taking a term like 'imagination' and asking for an Abhidhamma explanation, isn't it? Easier to start with the Abhidhamma explanations.....:).

        Scott: Yup. Here are some Paa.li words to consider (PTS PED), since it might make more sense to determine whether any terms in Paa.li might approach the idea of 'imagination.'

        "Sankappa [...cp. kappeti fig. meaning] thought, intention, purpose, plan...As equivalent of vitakka...Sankappa is defd at DhsA 124 as (cetaso) abhiniropanaa, i. e. application of the mind..."

        "Kappeti [Der. from kappa...shape, form...karoti to shape, to make, cp. karoti] to cause to fit, to create, build, construct, arrange, prepare, order...II. fig. 1. in special sense: to construct or form an opinion, to conjecture, to think Sn 799; DA i.103; -- 2. generally: to ordain, prescribe, determine...kappaapeti to cause to be made in all senses of kappeti..."

        "Vitakka [vi+takka] reflection, thought, thinking; 'initial application'...giving vitakka the characteristic of fixity & steadiness, vicaara that of movement & display)...vitakka is often combd with vicaara or "initial & sustained application" Mrs. Rh. D.; Cpd. 282; 'reflection [and] investigation' Rh. D.; to denote the whole of the mental process of thinking (viz. fixing one's attention and reasoning out, or as Cpd. 17 expls it 'vitakka is the directing of concomitant properties towards the object; vicaara is the continued exercise of the mind on that object.'...Note. Looking at the combn vitakka+vicaara in earlier and later works one comes to the conclusion that they were once used to denote one & the same thing: just thought, thinking, only in an emphatic way (as they are also semantically synonymous), and that one has to take them as one expression, like jaanaati passati, without being able to state their difference. With the advance in the Sangha of intensive study of terminology they became distinguished mutually. Vitakka became the inception of mind, or attending, and was no longer applied, as in the Suttas, to thinking in general. The explns of Commentators are mostly of an edifying nature and based more on popular etymology than on natural psychological grounds."
        Sincerely,

        Scott.
      • Dieter Moeller
        Hi Sarah ( Christine ...) you provided an interesting summary .. but I missed to find reference to Sankhara Khanda , isn t it the aggregate for
        Message 3 of 18 , Apr 2, 2010
          Hi Sarah ( Christine ...)

          you provided an interesting summary ..
          but I missed to find reference to Sankhara Khanda , isn't it the aggregate for imagination?

          with Metta Dieter



          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • colette
          Hi Christine, Sarah is a good intermediary in this situation. NO, I do not use wit or laughter as a means other than to reduce the pain of that which I
          Message 4 of 18 , Apr 2, 2010
            Hi Christine,

            Sarah is a good "intermediary" in this situation. NO, I do not use "wit" or "laughter" as a means other than to reduce the pain of that which I am dealing with i.e. morophine, heroin, in a combat situation. laughter can be and is good consciousness to use when applying these higher concepts of REALITY. We all have to deal with REALITY on our own terms and not from some book in it's two dimensional format.

            I thank you for your many avenues of enlightenment that you have given me. heaven knows I would never have gotten them by staying confined to this group and it's myopia or is that 'single-mindness'?

            Maybe I should look into this group called THE DHARMAWHEEL although if "citation" is a requirement then I can tell you that my ability to actually site all the material I use to work with is almost NON-EXISTANT and will just put me at odds with the DICTATES of the community THEREFORE I wouldn't even bother wasting your time and what little time I have.

            "Imagine there's no country. I wonder if you can" John Lennon.

            toodles,
            colette

            --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "Christine" <cjforsyth1@...> wrote:
            >
            > Hello Sarah,
            >
            > Thank you for your post - much appreciated.<...>
          • Christine
            Hello all, I m not sure if this article by Thanissaro Bhikkhu is encompassing the same meaning: Pushing the Limits Desire & Imagination in the Buddhist Path by
            Message 5 of 18 , Apr 2, 2010
              Hello all,

              I'm not sure if this article by Thanissaro Bhikkhu is encompassing the same meaning:

              Pushing the Limits Desire & Imagination in the Buddhist Path by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
              http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/thanissaro/pushinglimits.html

              with metta
              Chris
              ~~~The trouble is that you think you have time~~~
            • Ken O
              Dear Christine that is the reason why we have to read the commentary and Abhidhamma.  Without it, one mix craving with chanda, craving is akusala.  When
              Message 6 of 18 , Apr 3, 2010
                Dear Christine

                that is the reason why we have to read the commentary and Abhidhamma.  Without it, one mix craving with chanda, craving is akusala.  When craving arise, panna will not arise. 

                Whereas chanda is kusala or akusala depends what it arise with.  Developing panna is due to chanda with panna or sadda and not craving, if there is craving, we will continue to remain in samasara.

                thats my thoughts.  This article only cause more confusion to the dhamma about the meaning of chanda and craving

                Ken O


                >
                >From: Christine <cjforsyth1@...>
                >To: dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com
                >Sent: Saturday, 3 April 2010 05:06:56
                >Subject: [dsg] Re: What is "Imagination" from the Abhidhamma perspective?
                >

                >Hello all,
                >
                >I'm not sure if this article by Thanissaro Bhikkhu is encompassing the same meaning:
                >
                >Pushing the Limits Desire & Imagination in the Buddhist Path by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
                >http://www.accessto insight.org/ lib/authors/ thanissaro/ pushinglimits. html
                >
                >with metta
                >Chris
                >~~~The trouble is that you think you have time~~~
                >
                >
                >


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              • sarah abbott
                Hi Dieter, Thanks for joining in the discussion. ... but I missed to find reference to Sankhara Khanda , isn t it the aggregate for imagination? ... S: Yes,
                Message 7 of 18 , Apr 8, 2010
                  Hi Dieter,

                  Thanks for joining in the discussion.

                  --- On Sat, 3/4/10, Dieter Moeller <moellerdieter@...> wrote:
                  >you provided an interesting summary ..
                  but I missed to find reference to Sankhara Khanda , isn't it the aggregate for imagination?
                  ...
                  S: Yes, this is a good point. All the imagination, all the dreaming is accumulated in sakhara khandha.

                  I like to be reminded of this - all the good and bad tendencies, accumulated by sankhara khandha.

                  Hope you're well now.

                  Metta

                  Sarah
                  =======
                • ksheri3
                  Hi Sarah, ... colette: accumulated in , how about encapsulated in , or packaged in (don t touch that last one, for the time being, packaged in, I ll get to
                  Message 8 of 18 , Apr 8, 2010
                    Hi Sarah,

                    > S: Yes, this is a good point. All the imagination, all the dreaming is accumulated in sakhara khandha.
                    >

                    colette: "accumulated in", how about "encapsulated in", or "packaged in" (don't touch that last one, for the time being, packaged in, I'll get to that later in my meditation), but esentially you're suggesting an "aggregate" is being established or already is established and is being stored. HARK, do I hear a person, in the distance, crying out "Alaya-Vijnana"? What situation could this poor person be in to be crying out so painfully? I wonder/ponder, is this person fallen into a crevice and cannot draw himself/herself up out of the crevice, or is the cry more of a moan, a reminder, as if stated by the fantasy creature called THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST? Does the Alaya-Vijnana come properly labeled i.e. "keep in a cool dry place" or is it like a mason's jar where Home Cookin' is the ritual and the ORAL TRADITION is the label/instructions? You know, they'll pickle anything in China, won't they? Is the act of "pickling" the result of "spirits"? Is it alchemy? Heaven knows, I guess.

                    Actually I'm trying to relate with Nina's past envolvement in this thread and the rest of the gang soooo far ahead of me in this concept since I'm trying to create the wording which manifests the Abhidharma's procedure, in all of the minds participating here. Again, it's just my theories about the MIND-ONLY SCHOOL's conepts, as well as a little "chaos magik", and a little orthodox dogma.

                    Hope ya don't mind!

                    toodles,
                    colette
                  • Dieter Moeller
                    Hi Sarah, you wrote: (D: you provided an interesting summary .. but I missed to find reference to Sankhara Khanda , isn t it the aggregate for imagination?)
                    Message 9 of 18 , Apr 9, 2010
                      Hi Sarah,

                      you wrote:

                      (D: 'you provided an interesting summary ..
                      but I missed to find reference to Sankhara Khanda , isn't it the aggregate for imagination?)

                      ...
                      S: Yes, this is a good point. All the imagination, all the dreaming is accumulated in sakhara khandha.
                      I like to be reminded of this - all the good and bad tendencies, accumulated by sankhara khandha.

                      D: yes ..and the interesting point is, that despite the conditioning of those tendendies there is a certain freedom of will by directing the focus for áction.. not so say control

                      S: Hope you're well now.

                      D: thanks quite ok , hoping you well too ;-)

                      with Metta Dieter



                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • sarah
                      Dear Scott & Chris, Scott, many thanks for your references to Pali terms. ... .... Sarah: Dvedhaavitakka Sutta: MN 19 (~Naa.namoli, Bodhi transl): 6. Bhikkhus,
                      Message 10 of 18 , Apr 11, 2010
                        Dear Scott & Chris,

                        Scott, many thanks for your references to Pali terms.

                        --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "scottduncan2" <scduncan@...> wrote:
                        > S: "...This is the difficulty of taking a term like 'imagination' and asking for an Abhidhamma explanation, isn't it? Easier to start with the Abhidhamma explanations.....:).
                        >
                        > Scott: Yup. Here are some Paa.li words to consider (PTS PED), since it might make more sense to determine whether any terms in Paa.li might approach the idea of 'imagination.'
                        >
                        > "Sankappa [...cp. kappeti fig. meaning] thought, intention, purpose, plan...As equivalent of vitakka...Sankappa is defd at DhsA 124 as (cetaso) abhiniropanaa, i. e. application of the mind..."
                        >
                        > "Kappeti [Der. from kappa...shape, form...karoti to shape, to make, cp. karoti] to cause to fit, to create, build, construct, arrange, prepare, order...II. fig. 1. in special sense: to construct or form an opinion, to conjecture, to think Sn 799; DA i.103; -- 2. generally: to ordain, prescribe, determine...kappaapeti to cause to be made in all senses of kappeti..."
                        ....
                        Sarah:

                        Dvedhaavitakka Sutta: MN 19 (~Naa.namoli, Bodhi transl):

                        6."Bhikkhus, whatever a bhikkhu frequently thinks and ponders
                        upon, that will become the inclination of his mind. If he frequently
                        thinks and ponders upon thoughts of sensual desire, he has abandoned
                        the thought of renunciation to cultivate the thought of
                        sensual desire, and then his mind inclines to thoughts of sensual desire. If he frequently thinks and ponders upon thoughts of ill-will...upon thoughts of cruelty, he has abandoned the
                        thought of non-cruelty to cultivate the thought of cruelty, and then
                        his mind inclines to thoughts of cruetly."

                        ["Ya~n~nadeva, bhikkhave, bhikkhu bahulamanuvitakketi anuvicaareti, tathaa tathaa nati hoti cetaso. Kaamavitakka.m ce, bhikkhave, bhikkhu bahulamanuvitakketi anuvicaareti, pahaasi nekkhammavitakka.m, kaamavitakka.m bahulamakaasi, tassa ta.m kaamavitakkaaya citta.m namati. Byaapaadavitakka.m ce, bhikkhave…pe… vihi.msaavitakka.m ce, bhikkhave, bhikkhu bahulamanuvitakketi anuvicaareti, pahaasi avihi.msaavitakka.m, vihi.msaavitakka.m bahulamakaasi, tassa ta.m vihi.msaavitakkaaya citta.m namati."]

                        S: And conversely....

                        11. "Bhikkhus, whatever a bhikkhu frequently thinks and ponders
                        upon, that will become the inclination of his mind. If he frequently
                        thinks and ponders upon thoughts of renuniciation, he has abandoned
                        the thought of sensual desire to cultivate the thought of
                        renunciation, and then his mind inclines to thoughts of renunciation. If he frequently thinks and ponders upon thoughts of
                        non-ill will...upon thoughts of non-cruetly, he has abandoned the
                        thought of cruelty to cultivate the thought of non-cruelty, and then
                        his mind inclines to thoughts of non-cruetly."

                        Metta

                        Sarah
                        =======
                      • sarah
                        Hi Colette, #106642 ... ... S: I m suggesting that each moment of thinking now conditions more of such thinking. Each moment of anger conditions more anger.
                        Message 11 of 18 , May 1, 2010
                          Hi Colette,

                          #106642

                          --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "ksheri3" <ksheri3@...> wrote:

                          > > S: Yes, this is a good point. All the imagination, all the dreaming is accumulated in sankhara khandha.
                          > >
                          >
                          > colette: "accumulated in", how about "encapsulated in", or "packaged in" (don't touch that last one, for the time being, packaged in, I'll get to that later in my meditation), but esentially you're suggesting an "aggregate" is being established or already is established and is being stored.
                          ...
                          S: I'm suggesting that each moment of thinking now conditions more of such thinking. Each moment of anger conditions more anger. Each moment of kindness conditions more kindness. Each moment of wisdom conditions more wisdom. The anger, the kindness and the wisdom are all "sankhara khandhas" which "build up", conditioning on and on. However, the consciousness with anger, kindness or wisdom falls away as soon as it has arisen. So nothing is stored. Perhaps we can think of waves, arising and falling away, but a certain "velocity" accumulates. Each wave has an effect.
                          ...
                          >HARK, do I hear a person, in the distance, crying out "Alaya-Vijnana"? What situation could this poor person be in to be crying out so painfully? I wonder/ponder, is this person fallen into a crevice and cannot draw himself/herself up out of the crevice, or is the cry more of a moan, a reminder, as if stated by the fantasy creature called THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST?
                          ....
                          S: Very witty! Yes, alaya-vijnana, or the idea of a store, is a crevice not to fall into or a fantasy of a past ghost:-) Don't go there!
                          ....
                          >Does the Alaya-Vijnana come properly labeled i.e. "keep in a cool dry place" or is it like a mason's jar where Home Cookin' is the ritual
                          ...
                          S: Think of alaya as the desire for the cookie jar...
                          ...
                          > Actually I'm trying to relate with Nina's past envolvement in this thread and the rest of the gang soooo far ahead of me in this concept since I'm trying to create the wording which manifests the Abhidharma's procedure, in all of the minds participating here. Again, it's just my theories about the MIND-ONLY SCHOOL's conepts, as well as a little "chaos magik", and a little orthodox dogma.
                          ....
                          S: Better to leave aside the "mind-only school" and "chaos magik" if you wish to understand the Abhidhamma.
                          ...
                          > Hope ya don't mind!
                          ...
                          S: Glad to see your interest in the topic!

                          Metta

                          Sarah
                          =======
                        • colette
                          Hi Sarah and Jon, Yea, it took ya a little while to work me in but I got there/here Sarah, how is it possible for the Abhidharma to NOT and to NEVER have
                          Message 12 of 18 , May 2, 2010
                            Hi Sarah and Jon,

                            Yea, it took ya a little while to work me in but I got there/here

                            Sarah, how is it possible for the Abhidharma to NOT and to NEVER have CHAOS? The entire actuality of the Abhidharma is RESULANT from CHAOS: the is no need for a CAUSATION to manifest the Abhidharma if there is no CHAOS.

                            > S: Better to leave aside the "mind-only school" and "chaos magik" if you wish to understand the Abhidhamma.
                            >

                            colette: so, then, lets leave this Chaos magik and this Mind-Only School aside. So, THEN, did the Abhidharma suddenly appear outside the cave where there were a few "elitists" deciding what should be and what should not be placed into the Buddhist Canon? And those "elitists" just somehow came out of the cave with the dictatorship doctrine where they found the monks who were excluded joyfully relishing over the fact that they had something that the elitists did not have BUT because those monks were and are less than those "elitist" monks, the monks that possessed the Abhidharma gladly sacrificed their possession to the greedy elitists who then continued to maintain their slavery over any monk and person not invited into the cave to join the gang, tong, which was going to be used?

                            NO SIR, NO MAM, INVITE THOSE SISTERS AND BROS OF CHAOS MAGIK AND OF THE MIND-ONLY SCHOOL TO EXPRESS THEIR POSITION. They are just as much allowed to participate in the decision of the DHARMA if they are not a party member or from Bejing or Burma or North Korea or ...!

                            Sorry I could not get to the previous and less contraversial aspects of your reply to me but I've gotta go and deal with tons of other stuff before my time runs out here on Saturday night before Sunday black out.

                            toodles,
                            colette

                            --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "sarah" <sarahprocterabbott@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > Hi Colette,
                            >
                            > #106642
                            >
                            > --- In dhammastudygroup@yahoogroups.com, "ksheri3" <ksheri3@> wrote:
                            >
                            > > > S: Yes, this is a good point. All the imagination, all the dreaming is accumulated in sankhara khandha.
                            > > >
                            > >
                            > > colette: "accumulated in", how about "encapsulated in", or "packaged in" (don't touch that last one, for the time being, packaged in, I'll get to that later in my meditation), but esentially you're suggesting an "aggregate" is being established or already is established and is being stored.
                            > ...
                            > S: I'm suggesting that each moment of thinking now conditions more of such thinking. Each moment of anger conditions more anger. Each moment of kindness conditions more kindness. Each moment of wisdom conditions more wisdom. <...>
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