Reply To: Post on “Saṅkhāra – An Introduction”


Abhidhamma can be tricky due to the following reason.

Most of the fundamental FACTS about citta/cetasika/citta vithi are directly discernible ONLY to the mind of a Buddha. Not even Ven. Sariputta could ascertain those without the Buddha explaining to him. Once the Buddha laid out the basic framework for him, Ven. Sriputta and bhikkhus in his lineage were able to describe the bigger picture in detail. 

  • For example, how many cittas are in a citta vithi, and what are the seven universal cetasikas, etc.? Only a Buddha can see such things. Remember that a citta vithi with 17 cittas lasts less than a billionth of a second. No one but a Buddha can directly see the sequence of cittas in a citta vithi!
  • What I summarized in the above comment needed to be put together by piecing together bits and pieces from different places in the Tipitaka or Waharaka Theor’s Discourses. In rare cases, he may recite a wrong number in a discourse, even by accident. Thus, we must keep checking and ensuring it all fits together without contradictions. 
  • However, it is a tedious task since there is no place in the Tipitaka with all that information in one place.
  • Of course, we do have a mostly consistent picture. Now we are down to pinning down whether vaci sankhara starts in the second or third javana citta.
1 user thanked author for this post.