Hadaya vatthu in asanna realm

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    • #34831

      Dear Lal, dear friends,

      I just reread again the article “Gandhabba-only in Animal and Human realms”,

      Gandhabba – Only in Human and Animal Realms

      At point 3, you write:
      “Without exception, at each such cuti-patisandhi moment, a new kammaja kāya is generated by the kammic energy fueling a new existence. That kammaja kāya ALWAYS has a hadaya vatthu. That is the seat of the mind (the quality of which depends on the realm).”

      Then I was wondering if this also holds true for the Asanna-realm. According to Ven. Bodhi, no heart-base is produced for that realm (only the vital nonad).

    • #34837

      Again, please provide the page # of the book:

      “According to Ven. Bodhi, no heart-base is produced for that realm (only the vital nonad).”

    • #34841

      It is on page 257/258:

      “Among the non-percipient beings, the eye, ear, heart-base, and sound
      are also not found. Similarly, no consciousness-born material phe-
      nomena are found. Therefore, at the moment of their rebirth-linking,only the vital nonad arises. During the course of existence, material
      phenomena produced by temperature, with the exception of sound,

    • #34845

      Any living being is born with an “ekaja kaya” and it has hadaya vatthu.

      An asanna being also has an ekaja kaya, but it is fully shielded by its physical boy. That “body” does not have the ability to interact with the external world at all.
      – It is very similar to an arupavacara Brahma, except that an arupavacara Brahma’s hadaya vatthu is not shielded and it can directly interact with “dhammā” and generate thoughts.

      There is a difference between bhavanga and bhavanga citta. See, “Bhava and Bhavanga – Simply Explained!

      Since you can understand Sinhala, you may want to listen to the following discourse by Wahraka Thero:
      ධර්ම දේශනා 1

      In particular, listen to the segment starting at 1:16:00 hours. But it is best to listen to the whole discourse.

      I see your reference in Bhikkhu Bodhi’s book. As I said before, there are several contradictions in that book, even though mostly correct.

      The difference between plants and living beings is that plants only have jivitindriya and no hadaya vatthu. Thus its life is sustained by kammic energy, but it cannot generate citta.
      – But even in an asanna-being bhavanga is active the whole time. The “bhavanga state” has nothing to do with citta (thoughts). Therefore, an asanna-being is not aware of anything.

    • #34857

      Thank you for your explanation. It clears up a lot of confusions. Also the post about Bhavanga was very helpful.

      You send the link to the Desana, but unfortunately I cannot understand Sinhala. But I listened to all the Desanas that are available in English so far and find it very helpful.

      Now I understood the difference between asanna and plants. A friend told me recently that there is a Jataka story about the Buddha remembering a life “as a stone”.
      The question we had was whether here “stone” refers to an actual stone or just a figurative way of saying “mind without thoughts”.
      Now, I would think that stones and unorganic matter on earth does not even have jivitindriya, plants have jivitindriya and that asanna beings are not really located close to the earth’s surface but higher up. You said, their body shields the hadaya vatthu. How dense must their body be then?If it would be a few rupa only, would that be enough to shield?

    • #34859

      “You said, their body shields the hadaya vatthu. How dense must their body be then? If it would be a few rupa only, would that be enough to shield?”

      We cannot think about “shielding” in terms of our perceptions.
      – The human body “shields” the gandhabba (hadaya vatthu plus pasada rupa) inside.
      – The human body is not concrete or steel.
      – We have no idea how kamma works. Only a Buddha would know.

      See, “Brain – Interface between Mind and Body” and “Clarification of “Mental Body” and “Physical Body” – Different Types of ‘Kāya’

    • #34860

      I see. It also fits with the scenario where the gandhabba is out of the body, but still connected via a silver cord. In that case, one would say that there is no physical shielding, but still anantarika kamma cannot affect the gandhabba, so there is a kammic shielding.

      It makes more sense to me now.

    • #34861

      Another question:

      Are there any sources for the explanation that asanna realm and arupa brahma have hadaya vatthu? The book by Ven. Bodhi relies on a commentary, but is there something in the original scriptures or commentaries?

      It is just, to have something to show to others who might like to stick to Ven. Bodhi’s book.

    • #34865

      No. Offhand, I don’t have a Tipitaka reference for that.

      A reference may be there for this particular case. But we should not expect to find a reference to each and every incident. There are some things that can be deduced logically.

    • #34883

      Greetings! @Danielst,

      Are there any sources for the explanation that asanna realm and arupa brahma have hadaya vatthu?

      From the book A Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma, in the Compendium of Matter, page 257-258, it is stated that the Non-Percipient Beings (Asaññasattā), the eye, ear, heart-base, and sound are not found. Similarly, no consciousness-born material phenomena are found. Therefore, at the moment of their rebirth-linking, only the vital nonad (pure octad [eight inseparable material phenomena] with vitality [life faculty]) arises. During the course of existence after rebirth, material phenomena produced by temperature, with the exception of sound, continue.

      The book does not mention anything on the arūpa brahma.

      With mettā, Seng Kiat

    • #34903

      Dear Seng Kiat,
      On page 223 it is written:
      “Immediately after that has ceased: Following the dissolution mo-
      ment of the death consciousness, there arises in a new existence the re-
      birth-linking consciousness apprehending the object thus obtained in the
      final javana process of the previous life. This citta is supported by the
      heart-base in realms which include matter, but is baseless in the imma-
      terial realms. It is generated by a volitional formation, i.e. the kamma
      of the previous javana process, which in turn is grounded in the twin
      roots of the round of existence, latent ignorance and latent craving. The
      rebirth consciousness is conjoined with its mental adjuncts, i.e. the
      cetasikas, which it serves as a forerunner not in the sense that it pre-
      cedes them, but in that it acts as their locus (or foundation).”

      That sounds to me, as if according to Ven. Bodhi there is no matter at all in the arupa realms.

      Another (not related) text I found on page 239:
      “Material phenomenon of the heart (hadayar³pa): On the heart-
      base, see III, §20. The heart-base has the characteristic of being the
      material support for the mind element and the mind-consciousness
      element (see III, §21). Its function is to uphold them. It is manifested
      as the carrying of these elements. It is to be found in dependence on the
      blood inside the heart, and is assisted by the four great essentials and
      maintained by the life faculty.”

      It is to be found in dependence on the blood inside the heart.
      I heard this also from my meditation teacher here in Myanmar. He also believes that the mind only enters a body when the heart forms and not at the moment of conception.

      This blood-dependency is in contradiction to the Gandhabba idea, I think.
      I think it is due to commentary?

      Best wishes,

    • #34904

      “This blood-dependency is in contradiction to the Gandhabba idea, I think.
      I think it is due to commentary?”

      Gandhabba (at the moment of patisandhi) is just a few suddhatthaka. How can it have blood?

      It is hard to even imagine how “small” a suddhatthaka is.
      – The smallest micro-organism can be seen with a microscope.
      – Such a micro-organism would have uncountable billions of suddhatthaka.
      – A suddhatthaka can be seen only by a Buddha.

      So, definitely, there is no blood in a gandhabba!

    • #36140
      Tobias G

      In the table 31 realms of existence is is mentioned that there is “no mind” for an asanna satta. What is right? Is there hadaya vatthu or not?

      What means ekaja kaya?

    • #36141
      Tobias G

      Vb 18 states:

      4.3. Asaññasatta
      Asaññasattānaṁ devānaṁ upapattikkhaṇe kati khandhā pātubhavanti …pe… kati cittāni pātubhavanti?

      Asaññasattānaṁ devānaṁ upapattikkhaṇe eko khandho pātubhavati— rūpakkhandho; dve āyatanāni pātubhavanti— rūpāyatanaṁ, dhammāyatanaṁ; dve dhātuyo pātubhavanti— rūpadhātu, dhammadhātu; ekaṁ saccaṁ pātubhavati— dukkhasaccaṁ; ekindriyaṁ pātubhavati— rūpajīvitindriyaṁ. Asaññasattā devā ahetukā anāhārā aphassakā avedanakā asaññakā acetanakā acittakā pātubhavanti.

      (I cannot add a link, the buttons are missing)

    • #36142

      Asañña satta has a hadaya vatthu.
      – However, “mananca paticca dhammeca uppajjati mano vinananam” cannot take place because that is prevented by kammic energy for an asañña satta.
      – So, the mind is effectively inactive, i.e., no citta can arise.

      Ekaja kaya is the first kaya (kammaja kaya) that arises at cuti-patisandhi. For an asañña satta that is the only kaya that can arise, since no citta can arise (no cittaja kaya, and hence no utuja kaya either).

      I don’t see those formatting buttons either. Will try to see what the problem is.

    • #36150
      Tobias G

      The explanation for Arūpadhātu says this:

      Arūpadhātuyā upapattikkhaṇe katamāni dve āyatanāni pātubhavanti? Manāyatanaṁ, dhammāyatanaṁ— arūpadhātuyā upapattikkhaṇe imāni dve āyatanāni pātubhavanti.

      What is the difference between manāyatanaṁ and dhammāyatanaṁ?

    • #36152
      Tobias G

      Asanna satta should have bhavanga citta without interruption of citta vithi, right?

    • #36154
      Tobias G

      Lal, will you change the description in the table?

      asanna satta – “Body only; no mind”

    • #36156

      I slightly revised (removed a sentence from my comment above). Answers to Tobias’s questions are below.

      “Cakkhunca paticca rupeca uppajjhati cakkhu vinnanam”
      – ‘Rupa” or “rupayanata” involve external visual objects.
      – “Cakkhu” or “cakkhayatana” requires cakkhu pasada rupa.

      “Mananca paticca dhammeca uppajjhati mano vinnanam”
      – “dhamma” or “dhammayatana” involve namagotta, kamma bija, etc and involve vinnana dhatu. Vinnana dhatu is present in all 31 realms.
      – “mana” or “manayatana” is present when citta can arise.

      With those fundamental facts, we can address Tobias’s questions.

      1. In Asañña realm, only physical bodies (inert) with hadaya vatthu of those beings are present. Of course, dhammayatana is also present but those “dhamma” are prevented from contacting hadaya vatthu. Thus, manayatana is not present.
      – Hadaya vatthu is in the bhavanga state. As I explained before, those are NOT bhavanga citta.

      2. In arupa realms, only the manayatana and dhammayatana present.

      3. Tobias’s final comment: I don’t see a problem with the following:
      asanna satta – “Body only; no mind”

      I may have misunderstood some questions. If so, ask again.

    • #36157
      Tobias G

      Ok, understood.
      We know bhavanga as a state of mind like being in an “angry mindset” for a certain time.

      On the other hand there is bhavanga as life continuum. In the post citta vithi you say that “bhavaṅga citta can arise only within a citta vithi”. What does it mean? What is the difference between bhavanga and bhavanga citta?

      When looking at the pañcadvāra citta vīthi it is shown like this:
      B B B B B “AB BC BU PD CV Sam San V J J J J J J J T T” BT BT BT BT…

      The “B B B …” is what? Is that just the mode of presentation for “bhavanga” and there is no real bhavanga citta?

    • #36158
      Tobias G

      For me it seems “no mind” means “no hadaya”. But with dhammayatana there is mind (even if no thoughts are possible). The statement “only body, no mind” is confusing. The life must be maintained and that requires some “mind” or nama part.

    • #36160

      The “B B B …” is what? Is that just the mode of presentation for “bhavanga” and there is no real bhavanga citta?

      That’s actually a good way to put it: just a way to represent “bhavanga“.

      When there is no citta vithi running, then we have the bhavanga state, the “baseline” for that bhava (bhava + anga).

      In several places we have used the analogy of being under anesthesia for bhavanga. Those of us who have gone through operations (I’ve had a few) should know this well:

      We are wheeled to the operating room.
      The doctor connects us to some IV.
      We wake up in the recovery room.

      A few hours have passed, for our family members waiting for us, but those hours did not exist for us. There was no citta vithi during the operation, but there were still the hadaya vatthu + pasada rupa.

      Using the shielding metaphor, the body under anesthesia shields our mind (gandhabba). It seems like an asanna being is shielded by “kammic anesthesia”.

    • #36162

      Since this is an important subject — and there have been many questions — I thought of re-writing an old post to clarify things a bit more.

      See, “State of Mind in the Absence of Citta Vithi – Bhavaṅga

      Please feel free to ask questions. I can revise the post as needed to make it better.

      P.S. Note that the “formatting panel” is available again.

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