Post On Five Aggregates and Tilakkhaṇa – Introduction

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    • #29795
      Johnny_Lim
      Participant

      “Self” and “External Rupa” Have a Common Name – Sankata

      When our eye faculty senses something pleasing and agreeable to our mind, at that very first instance when we attach to that external sense object, is a dhammā born? Is this dhammā also known as sankata? Is this sankata the driving force of our endless rebirth? In other words, is this dhammā or sankata the Noble Truth of Suffering?

    • #29798
      Lal
      Keymaster

      This is a deep issue. Let me try to point out some key facts.

      1. Everything in this world (living and inert) have origins in the mind. “Dhamma” means “to bear” and they bear everything in this world.
      – Dhamma are energies produced by the mind. Basically, they are created by kamma vinnana.
      – This is why “Manōpubbangamā Dhammā..

      2. Another way to say that is to say everything arises via the Paticca Samuppada (PS) process.
      – We have discussed how future lives arise via the akusala-mula PS.
      – The arising of non-living things is a deeper aspect of PS.

      3. Whether living or not, all are sankata.
      – That basically means something that arises and destroyed and is subjected to unexpected change during its existence.

      4. Living beings (there are an infinite number of them) create future lives as well the external world that is needed for their “enjoyment.”
      – However, due to those intrinsic problems associated with a sankata in #3, neither a life form nor those “external things” cannot be maintained to their satisfaction.

      5. Therefore, suffering is intrinsically “built-in” in this very complex process.
      – Striving to gain “sensory pleasures” in such a world is fruitless and dangerous.
      – That is what is embedded in Tilakkhana: anicca, dukkha, anatta.

      6. We can get a simple idea of why a living being is a sankata.
      – We have discussed how kamma vinnana leads to the arising of a “mental body” or a gandhabba.
      – That gandhabba is created totally by kammic energy. It is unimaginably small energy.
      – But once merging with a single cell (zygote) in a womb, it can grow to be a full adult. See the first several posts in “Origin of Life.”
      – When that “coarse human body” dies, that gandhabba can make a few more. But by the time the gandhabba itself dies (when the kammic energy for the human bhava is exhausted), the mind has created kammic energies for many more such “mental bodies” for various existences.
      – So, at the end of a particular mental body, the mind grasps a new existence. That is how the rebirth process continues.
      – Of course, most of those existences are in the four lowest realms, because of the tendency to do immoral things to “gain pleasures”.

      7. Only when one can grasp the inherent problem with the above process, that one will attain magga phala, and stop grasping new existences (bhava.)

    • #29800
      Christian
      Participant

      It’s very clear to me and everything, I can somehow even “see” that process within my own mind which makes things much easier in general but one thing I can not figure it out is that how one grasp for lower realms, is kamma after end of bhava “grasping” lower realms? I mean anybody sane enough would not grab anything to get reborn in lower realms but maybe I can not phantom it because of many experiences I have now with real Buddha Dhamma. How one grasp existence in lower realms? One is pushed into it? One grasp unknowingly, is determined by kamma, image? Normally if one would see hells one would run away?

      Thank you :)

    • #29802
      Lal
      Keymaster

      Christian wrote: “It’s very clear to me and everything, I can somehow even “see” that process within my own mind which makes things much easier in general but one thing I can not figure it out is that how one grasp for lower realms, is kamma after end of bhava “grasping” lower realms? I mean anybody sane enough would not grab anything to get reborn in lower realms but maybe I can not phantom it because of many experiences I have now with real Buddha Dhamma. How one grasp existence in lower realms?..”

      That is an important point.
      – No one would willingly grasp a lower existence (bhava), like an animal or a niraya being.
      – What it grasps is the CAUSE of such an existence. This is an extremely important point.

      We need to remember that this grasping of existence happens at the cuti-patisandhi moment, and takes less than a billionth of a second. There is no time to THINK.
      – That ‘grasping” happens AUTOMATICALLY according to one’s gati.

      For example, let us consider an extreme example. Let us say person X killed person Y who had done something bad to X.
      – Now, most moral people would go to the police to resolve the matter, but X decided to take the law into his hands and kill Y. By the way, it is not easy to kill a human, especially if that is pre-planned.
      – Therefore, that means X has a defiled mind CAPABLE of killing a human.
      – A possible scenario close to the cuti-patisandhi moment is the following. The kammic energy for that strong kamma would re-create that mindset in X’s mind. He may see Y threatening him or a similar situation. A gun also appears in his hand. If he still has that mindset, he would just take the gun and shoot Y. At that moment X dies and is reborn in a niraya with that hateful mindset. (P.S. This will be very similar to seeing a dream.)
      – In another possible scenario, X had changed his gati after killing Y. Suppose he learned Dhamma and comprehended Tilakhhana. In that case, even though the above scenario will be re-created due to kammic energy, X WILL NOT go through with killing Y again.
      – That is why Angulimala did not get rebirth in an apaya even though he had killed almost a thousand people. “Account of Angulimāla – Many Insights to Buddha Dhamma

      Another way to say the above is to say that X in the above case did not go through with the “upadana paccaya bhava” step in Paticca Samuppada at the cuti-patisandhi moment.
      – See, “Tanhā Paccayā Upādāna – Critical Step in Paṭicca Samuppāda

    • #29905
      Christian
      Participant

      Yes, I forgot about cuti-patisandhi moment which makes sense now :)

    • #31375
      y not
      Participant

      Readers will please excuse my spelling. my right hand is bandaged; just had a cyst removed.
      I have to manage with my left hand, mouse to my left and all.

      Lal says: (May 28, 2020 at 10:08 am0

      –” X had changed his gati after killing Y. Suppose he learned Dhamma and comprehended Tilakhhana. In that case, even though the above scenario will be re-created due to kammic energy, X WILL NOT go through with killing Y again.”

      What about thiose who change their gati without ever having heard of Buddhadhamma?. i know of one particular fellow who turned from his ‘playboy lifestyle'(and he was married) to a moral way of life after having ‘converted’ to Jehovah Witnesses. Will he also not go through that decisive
      upadana-paccayapbhave step ? Will he also not go through with the deed at the cuti-patisandhi moment? In this respect, how is Buddhadhamma different.? I know it IS different, somehow, but where exactly lies the difference? For he now has come to see that grave consequences would follow. This alone is what stops him bringing the deed to a conclusion. Buddha or no Buddha.
      The Buddha expounded the Dhamma; one aspect of the Dhamma is that causes have cinsequenxes. And he has seen that. Jesus tasught the same . Most founders of other religions have taughtn the same.

    • #31377
      Lal
      Keymaster

      Good question y not.

      “What about those who change their gati without ever having heard of Buddhadhamma?”

      Yes. We all have heard such instances where Buddha Dhamma is not involved. Especially, some criminals “come to their senses” in some cases and drastically change their behavior.
      – Some people give up bad gati like smoking, drinking, or other bad lifestyles.

      However, the point is that the root ignorance about the “true nature the world” cannot be removed without comprehending the “unfruitfulness” and “dangers” in the attachment to worldly things.
      – A criminal changes for the better by seeing that his life could become even more miserable by continuing with the same actions/behavior.
      – Same with those people who give smoking, drugs, etc.
      – They would be just “looking for a better life.”

      Comprehension of the anicca nature is different. Of course, giving up all those bad habits mentioned above is the first step.
      – This is not an easy point to get across.

      I recommend re-reading the first part of the following document where a large amount of hidden anusaya is removed by a Sotapanna: Waharaka Thero Discourse – The Way to Nibbana

    • #31378
      y not
      Participant

      “Comprehension of the anicca nature is different”

      That would ‘cover’ all deeds done in the past at the cuti-patisandhi moment, not just the act of adultery (in the instance I have given). I had the feeling that this is what makes all the difference. And here is where the removal of the hidden anusaya comes in.

      Thank you Lal. Much merits to Christian, yourself and the others who have in any way contributed to the Thero’s discourse translations into English.

    • #31380
      Lal
      Keymaster

      Yes. This is the key point: “Comprehension of the anicca nature is different”

      We are used to thinking about worldly things as “good” and “bad.”
      – What the Buddha pointed it that just trying to do “good” will not keep us away from the rebirth process. “Good deeds” WILL get us rebirths in “good realms.” So, we MUST do good deeds.
      – But the problem is that the mind CAN BE tempted to do “bad things.” That happens especially when one is born into a “bad environment” meaning bad family, bad friends, etc.
      – We know that a child born into a “bad environment” has a high probability of ending up a criminal or drug addict.

      That is really the “hidden suffering” pointed out by the Buddha.
      – What we perceive as “good” is not “absolute.” It CANNOT be kept that way.
      – So, if we do good deeds, we may be born a Deva. If we cultivate jhana, we may be born a Brahma. But those lives come to an end, and then we have no idea what will happen next.
      – Furthermore, even if one lives a perfect life in this life, one may have bad kamma from previous lives waiting to bring a bad birth. That is part of anusaya.

      As long as there is hidden anusaya, temptation to do “bad” (and the possibility of a bad rebirth) WILL BE there.

      Those anusaya (hidden defilements) will be removed from a mind only when that picture becomes clear.
      – That is when one “sees” the “anicca nature.”

    • #31384
      y not
      Participant

      For the benefit of those who have not yet had the time to listen to, or read, the most recent Waharaka Thero discourse made available by Christian, at “waharaka-thero-english-subs-discourse” Forum topic, here are the Thero’s words, starting at 24′.00″ up to 24′.33″, explaining what anicca is:

      Universal Truth Exposure | Episode 01 – Know the Thilakuna

      “…Now we don’t have to go after (by) anyone’s definitions. We have the exact idea as disclosed by the Buddha as to what anicca is. We only have to understand this (This only is as much as we have to understand).
      ” Ananda, if a Bhikkhu sees the nature of suffering on (in) all sankhara, the shameful and disgusting nature of sankhara, this is what is called the anicca sanna.
      ” THIS IS HOW THE ENLIGHTENED ONE HAS EXPLAINED THE ANICCA SANNA”.

      The entire duration of the video is a treasure! Most of us are familiar (via English) with what the Thero is saying alright, thanks to Lal and others on the Site, but the way the Thero presents the whole has a distinctive ring to it, coming from such a One, even for those who, like myself, can only grasp single Sinhala words here and there uttered by the Thero.

      Once again, much merits to Christian.

    • #31386
      Christian
      Participant

      Much merits to everybody who put effort in reviving Dhamma to original form that brings permanent results!

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