I have made a few revisions to the post, “Kamma and Saṅkhāra, Cetanā and Sañcetanā.”
But I think it is time to write a series of posts on the following topic.
– Arising of citta (loosely translated as “thoughts”) is a purely mechanical process. It happens within a billionth of a second.
– Then how is it that we have “willpower” to change our destiny?
– That requires systematic analysis. There is sufficient background material on the website, and there are enough people who will be able to follow.
It is primarily humans who have willpower.
– For example, animals are essentially robots who instinctively respond to sensory inputs (arammana.) But that is not to say they don’t have feelings. They do, and they suffer tremendously. But they are helpless (that is the true meaning of “anatta“) because they cannot alter their destiny.
– Even most Devas and Brahmas are like that. They enjoy their mental states until the sustaining kammic energy runs out. Of course, Devas and Brahmas with magga phala do have willpower because their gati have been permanently altered (no going back to bad gati.)
– That is why the Buddha said that human bhava is precious and not to be wasted!
– Those interested in the new series may want to grasp the essential aspects of Abhidhamma in the Abhidhamma section.