Akusala Citta and Akusala Vipāka Citta

Revised November 4, 2017

All ten akusala kamma are done with these 12 akusala citta. There are 8 greed-rooted, 2 hatred-rooted, and 2 delusion-rooted citta. Of course citta (pronounced “chiththä”) are thoughts; any speech or bodily action starts with a thought.

Both greed-rooted and hatred-rooted also have delusion as a root.

Root Assoc. with Feeling Sasankhārika?
1 Greed Wrong view Pleasure No
2 Greed Wrong view Pleasure Yes
3 Greed Pleasure No
4 Greed Pleasure Yes
5 Greed Wrong view Equanimity No
6 Greed Wrong view Equanimity Yes
7 Greed Equanimity No
8 Greed Equanimity Yes
9 Dislike (patigha) Aversion Displeasure No
10 Dislike (patigha) Aversion Displeasure Yes
11 Delusion Vicikicca Equanimity
12 Delusion Uddacca Equanimity

 

1. The first citta is described as, ” a thought rooted in greed (and delusion), associated with wrong views, accompanied by pleasure”. The others can be stated the same way.

  • Those citta that are associated with wrong views are the worst, even though wrong views are listed as #10 on the ten immoral actions, see, “Ten Immoral Actions (Dasa Akusala)“.
  • Citta generated with pleasure means one is enthusiastic about it because of one’s habits (gathi) or one starts liking it. For example, one who likes to go fishing has a bad habit; he gets a pleasure by just thinking about it; thus it is stronger than one done with equanimity.
  • The hateful citta are always done with displeasure, but that displeasure can arise with ignorance. For example, someone who has wrong views may generate displeasure towards a moral person merely because of one’s wrong views. I have encountered some people who got upset with me when I pointed out that rebirth has evidence for it.
  • Sasankhārika means with less javana power.
  • See, the notes at the end of the post “Conditions for the Four Stages of Nibbana” for details.

2. Since vicikicca is also due to wrong views, those five cittas marked in red are the strongest akusala citta done with “wrong views” or ‘ditthi“. They  can condition one’s mind to a “gathi” suitable for birth in the apāyas; see, “What is in a Thought? Why Gathi are so Important?“. 

  • The vyāpada or the strong hate — that makes one eligible for birth in the apāyas –actually arises from the first four types of lōbha citta. It is also called “dvesa” or “dvesha” which means “second manifestation” or (“dvi +”vesa“) of lobha. When one is burdened with extreme greed, it can turn to the second manifestation of extreme hate for anyone in the way.
  • Upon attaining the Sōtapanna stage, such habits or “gathi” are removed, and thus no adverse kamma vipāka come to the mind at the dying moment, as we point out below. The “pati+ichcha sama+uppāda” or what is born is similar to what is grasped, is at play at the dying moment. One automatically grasps things one has a habit of liking; they automatically come to the forefront of the mind at the dying moment.

3. The other 7 akusala citta are stopped from arising in stages as a Sōtapanna cultivates the Path further.

  • The two dislike (patigha)-rooted cittas (together with some potency of the remaining 4 greed-based citta, i.e., kāma rāga) are reduced at the Sakadāgami stage.
  • Those two dislike-rooted citta, together with kāma rāga, are stopped at the Anāgāmi stage. Also, potency of the remaining 4 greed-based citta, i.e., kāma rāga are reduced to just kāma level.
  • Finally, the remaining 4 greed-based citta and the uddacca citta are removed at the Arahant stage. Thus an Arahant will never experience an akusala citta.

4. These 12 types of citta lead to 7 types of vipāka (resultant) citta.

  • None of the vipāka citta has any unwholesome roots (greed, hate, delusion); of course they also do not have the wholesome roots. Thus they are called rootless (ahētuka) citta.

5. Five of these akusala vipāka citta are the ones that lead to (undesirable) sense events through the five physical senses. Thus they are responsible for eye consciousness (cakkhu viññāna), ear consciousness (sota viññāna), nose consciousness (ghāna viññāna), taste consciousness (jivhā viññāna), and body consciousness (kāya viññāna).

6. The sixth akusala vipāka citta is called receiving consciousness accompanied by equanimity (upekkha-sahagata sampaticcana citta). This is a citta that accepts the sense impression to the mind (we will discuss in Abhidhamma section).

7. The seventh akusala vipāka citta is called the investigating consciousness accompanied by equanimity (upekkha-sahagata santirana citta). This is the citta that is responsible for the birth in the apāyas (lowest four realms), i.e, it acts as the patisandhi citta for the birth in the apāyas.

8. One may wonder how a Sōtapanna avoids the apāyas, because he/she is still capable of generating the 7 cittas that are not associated with ditthi (see the Table above), and thus it is possible to generate this apāyagami-patisandhi citta.

  • The point is that after becoming a Sōtapanna, such vipāka thoughts do not come to the mind at the last thought processes; only the good kamma vipāka come to the forefront of the mind close to the dying moment because he/she no longer has the “gathi” suitable for a birth in the apāyas.

9. It is hard to give up one’s bad habits (“gathi“), mainly because one does not fully comprehend the true nature of the world, i.e., anicca, dukkha, anatta, and thus has wrong views about this world with 31 realms. One needs to comprehend that one’s actions have consequences not only in this life, but (mainly) in the future lives; also, whatever one gains by such harmful actions is just temporary, AND do not leave one with a peace mind.

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