That is an excellent way to put it, Lang!
Those “mental aspects/qualities” arise when a set of rupa (that once one experienced, plans to experience, or currently experience) is “kept close in one’s mind” (i.e., one has upādāna for them).
As one progresses on the Noble Path, that set will keep shrinking.
– An Arahant would not upādāna any component of rupakkhandha.
– Note that memories of past rupa in rupakkhandha experienced with the mind directly, via “manañca paṭicca dhamme ca uppajjāti manoviññāṇaṃ.” See #4 of, “Vipāka Vēdanā and “Samphassa jā Vēdanā” in a Sensory Event.”
– Understanding these details lead to getting rid of sakkāya diṭṭhi. See, “Paṭicca Samuppāda – A “Self” Exists Due to Avijjā”
– That whole process is discussed systematically in “Worldview of the Buddha.” The above two posts are part of this section.
P.S. To emphasize: All attachments start with an ārammaṇa, i.e., sensory contacts between an internal rupa and external rupa. (six types, including mana/dhamma).
– But attachment happens via all five aggregates of rupa, vedanā, saññā, saṅkhāra, and viññāṇa. It is important to see the details as explained by Lang.
– That is why it is “pañca upādāna khandhā.”