[dsg] Some Thoughts on "Intermediate State", to Alex, no 2.
- Dear Alex,
As I see it, I cannot fit in an intermediate state.
continuation: more quotes from Vis. Ch XVII:
Text Vis.: And while, as a continuous process,31 it is being pushed
by craving and flung forward by formations, it abandons its former
support, like a man
who crosses a river by hanging on to a rope tied to a tree on the near
bank, and, whether or not it gets a further support originated by kamma,
it occurs by means of the conditions consisting only in object
condition, and so on.
N: Note 31, taken from the Tiika:. 'As a continuous process
consisting of death, rebirth-linking, and the adjacent
consciousnesses' (Pm. 617).
This shows that cittas arise and fall away and succeed one another
without interval, in continuity (santati). Dying-consciousness,
rebirth-consciosuness and the following cittas in the next life
succeed one another extremely quickly.
As we read before (Vis. 136), with regard to the location of rebirth:
� being driven there by the force of defilements that have not been
cut off.�, these are the defilements such as ignorance and craving
(tanhaa), as the Tiika explains. It states that these are the
�attendants� (upa.t.thaana) of kamma and hence there is the inclining
to the succession of cittas in a following life. The pa.tisandhi-
citta is driven towards one location.
As to the expression, �whether or not it gets a further support
originated by kamma�, the Tiika states that when there is rebirth
with five khandhas (pa~ncavokaarabhava) there is the support of the
heartbase, whereas when there is rebirth with four khandhas
(catuvokaarabhava), there is no heartbase. In the latter case there
are only the four naamakhandhas, no ruupa.
As the text states: < it occurs by means of the conditions consisting
only in object condition, and so on.>
As we have seen, the kamma that will produce rebirth-consciousness,
conditions the last javanacittas and the object experienced by those
cittas. The object may be kamma, a sign of kamma or a vision of the
place of rebirth.
Conclusion: It is emphasized in the foregoing that not a person is
reborn, but that there are only nama and rupa arising and falling
away. The dying-consciousness is a citta and it is immediately
succeeded by the next citta which is the rebirth-consciousness. This
happens as it were in one continuity.
As we read, (162) � it is not a lasting being, not a soul. And it has
neither transmigrated from the past becoming nor yet is it manifested
here without cause from that.�
The Tiika refers to a text of the �Middle Length Sayings� (I, no 38),
�Greater Discourse on the Destruction of Craving�. The monk Sati
thought that �this consciousness itself runs on, fares on, not
another.� We read that the Buddha explained to him about citta that
arises because of its appropriate conditions. He explained that if
citta arises because of eye and visible object it is known as seeing-
consciousness, and so on for the other classes of cittas. There are
different types of cittas arising because of different conditions.
Not a person transmigrates from the past life to the present life,
and so long as there are conditions there will be rebirth.
What happens at the moments of dying and rebirth is not different
from wat occurs right now: citta falls away and it is succeeded by a
following citta. Nobody can control rebirth, it is conditioned by kamma.
Intro Vis. 164:
In the preceding section it was explained that there is no lasting
being that dies and is reborn, although the dying-consciousness and
rebirth-consciousness occur as it were in one continuity.
In this section it is explained that the next becoming is another
becoming and the rebirth-consciousness links the former life to the
next life. The translator speaks about linking across a gap.
The Tiika emphasizes this by mentioning again the many varieties of
becoming, destination etc. There may be life in the human plane to be
followed by life as an animal who is eggborn, for example.
Text Vis.164: The former of these [two states of consciousness] is
called 'death' (cuti) because of falling (cavana), and the latter
'rebirth-linking' (pa.tisandhana) because of linking (pa.tisandhaana)
across the gap separating the beginning of the next becoming.
N: The Tiika explains that the next becoming is another becoming and
the rebirth-consciousness links the former life to the next life. The
Tiika then refers in one phrase to the many differences in becoming,
its way of being produced, destiny, station of consciousness and
abode of being (bhava-yoni-gati-vi~n~naa.na.t.thiti-sattaavaasa) as
explained in Vis. 148, and states that the rebirth-consciousness
links the past life to thes next becoming.
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