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Mental objects as vipaka? - Dhamma Wheel

Mental objects as vipaka?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
phil
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Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby phil » Wed Jun 01, 2011 2:12 pm

Hello all

Vipaka includes mental objects, right? Does that mean thoughts are vipaka? The stray mental junk that comes and goes during meditation, for example, such as thoughts about what went earlier in the day etc...are they to be understood as vipaka? Or is there a pre-thought mental element that is the vipaka, and thoughts arise from it, as a response to the vipaka... hope that makes sense...


Thanks for any feedback.
Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)

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Alex123
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Re: Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jun 01, 2011 4:07 pm

Hello Phil,

Very interesting question, I wonder the answer myself. It seems to me that if the thoughts such as lustful or hating are kamma, then they are not vipāka. Also often the thoughts themselves are expression of one's desires. Since desire is active kamma, so perhaps mental kamma is made when thoughts appear.

Idle chatter is considering to be bad kamma (breaking the precept), so if one has idle chatter in one's mind, is it still considered to be bad kamma and breaking the precept?

With best wishes,

Alex
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

phil
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Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:08 am
Location: Tokyo

Re: Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby phil » Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:18 pm

Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)

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Alex123
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Re: Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:39 pm

Thinking could be an actual thing that one does in this moment. Ultimately current idle chatter, holding wrong views, etc, is not dependent on previous kamma.


"Having approached the priests & contemplatives who hold that... 'Whatever a person experiences... is all caused by what was done in the past,' I said to them: 'Is it true that you hold that... "Whatever a person experiences... is all caused by what was done in the past?"' Thus asked by me, they admitted, 'Yes.' Then I said to them, 'Then in that case, a person is a killer of living beings because of what was done in the past. A person is a thief... unchaste... a liar... a divisive speaker... a harsh speaker... an idle chatterer... greedy... malicious... a holder of wrong views because of what was done in the past.' When one falls back on what was done in the past as being essential, monks, there is no desire, no effort [at the thought], 'This should be done. This shouldn't be done.' When one can't pin down as a truth or reality what should & shouldn't be done, one dwells bewildered & unprotected. One cannot righteously refer to oneself as a contemplative. This was my first righteous refutation of those priests & contemplatives who hold to such teachings, such views.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

It seems to me that wisdom requires effort in the here and now. The more wise one is, the more one is going to restraint what is happening now, no matter how hard it is. IMHO doing what is right is an aspect of wisdom.

IMHO.

With metta,

Alex
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

phil
Posts: 788
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:08 am
Location: Tokyo

Re: Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby phil » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:44 pm

Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)

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Alex123
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Re: Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby Alex123 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:54 pm

Hello Phil, all,

I was very interested in the whole "freedom of will or not" a while back ago. It seems to me that the prudent thing is to just do your best regardless how bad the current situation is. Everyone has to start where there are, and even the future-Buddha-Gotama-to-be was in hell in at least one life. Regardless whether the present moment is totally vipaka or kamma, fatalistically predetermined to happen or not, do your best. Maybe putting lots of effort NOW is totally conditioned and was fatalistically predetermined aeons ago.

Even if there is absolutely no control at all in any case, still the teaching of "do your best, and start from where you are because that is the only place you can ever start with" is a good conditioning factor. The proper conditions will be present only if they are made. Perhaps the reason why we aren't yet awakened is because we waited for the right moment "later, when situation gets better", for all those past aeons of samsara.

Tomorrow never comes, it is always "tomorrow".
Better conditions never come until one actually makes them, and the only time to make them is now.

I will be away on seminars from today until Monday (june 6).
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

phil
Posts: 788
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:08 am
Location: Tokyo

Re: Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby phil » Sat Jun 04, 2011 12:35 am

Thanks Alex. Yes, well said. Sorting out vipaka from kamma in our experience/behaviour is a topic where insight may or may not develop but there are more pressing urgencies re the Dhamma, especially for people like me who must deal constantly with transgression level defilements...

Enjoy the seminars...
Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)

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Modus.Ponens
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Location: Gallifrey

Re: Mental objects as vipaka?

Postby Modus.Ponens » Sat Jun 04, 2011 2:17 am

I skimmed through the thread so I don't know if anybody mentioned this, but I read the following: a student asked his teacher why he/she never saw lights when meditating? The teacher answered that it was a good thing that he/she did not had the karma of experiencing distracting lights. I think he meant vipaka. But I don't know if that teacher was qualified enough to say such thing.

Food for thought :popcorn:
He turns his mind away from those phenomena, and having done so, inclines his mind to the property of deathlessness: 'This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications; the relinquishment of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding.'
(Jhana Sutta - Thanissaro Bhikkhu translation)


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