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Home Teachings Non-Self The Teaching of Non-Self - Summary of Processes

The Teaching of Non-Self - Summary of Processes

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Article Index
The Teaching of Non-Self
Introduction
Material Body
Belief in Creation
Attachment to Self
Vipassana Meditation
Feelings
Perception
Volitional Activities
Consciousness
True Dhamma
What Five Aggregates Are Like
Summary of Processes
All Pages

Summary of Processes

1. In the first process of cognition of sight, consciousness registers only the ultimate reality of sight.

2. In the first round of reflection on what has been seen, there is still consciousness of what has actually been seen, namely the sight. No misconcept has appeared yet. If at this stage, heedful noting is done, wrong concept cannot come in. Cognition will rest only on the ultimate object.

3. In the second round of reflection, concept of form and shape of man and woman begin to appear.

4. In the third round of reflection, the concept of name as man and woman has appeared. Likewise in the process of cognition of sound, odour, taste , and touch, the same sequence of transition from consciousness of reality to consciousness of concept takes place.

When consciousness of sight, sound, etc., arises or when the first round of reflection on what has been seen, heard, etc., takes place, if careful noting is done instantly as 'seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching, etc.,' wrong concepts cannot comes in. The consciousness will rest on the reality of what is actually seen, heard, etc. That is the reason for taking note of 'seeing, hearing, touching' at the instant of each arising so that consciousness will remain with reality. If note is taken as 'seeing, seeing' while an object is being seen the, object of cognition will cease just with the fact of seeing, and process of cognition of concepts through reflection of what was seen cannot take place.

In accordance with the teaching 'ditthe ditthamattam bhavissati,' just seeing at the time of seeing and consciousness of seeing ends its course there. Then there appears the analytical knowledge of the unknowing matter such as eyes, sounds, etc., of the body and the knowing mind which is consciousness of the objects. There is also knowledge that seeing and noting appear recurrently both rising and vanishing. Realization comes that there is only impermanence, suffering, and non-self. Likewise with what is heard, smelt, tasted, touched, or thought about.

Constant note taking of these phenomena will reveal the difference between mind and body, their nature of impermanence, suffering, and non-self. Realization comes to the meditator, "Previously, because there was not taking any note of the phenomena, the wrong concepts are believed to be reality; the conjuring tricks have been accepted as reality. Now that the phenomena are noted as they occur at the moment of occurrence, there is not seen any such thing as self, and there is only incessant arising and perishing. When seeing an object, the eye consciousness immediately vanishes after it has arisen, and there is no such thing as seeing for a long time. There is only fresh arising of eye consciousness with each act of seeing and its instant perishing. Likewise with hearing, touching, thinking , etc.

There is no hearing for a long time. With each act of hearing, the ear consciousness arises and vanishes instantly. There is no touching for a long time. At each act of touching, the touch consciousness arises and vanishes instantly. There is no thinking over for a long time, with each act of thinking, the mind consciousness arises and vanishes instantly. Therefore everything is impermanent. Arising is always followed by instant perishing, and there is nothing reliable and trust-worthy. There is only terror and suffering. Every thing happens not as one wishes, and they are conditioned by their own causes and circumstances which is just the nature of non-self.

Mere conjuring tricks, this consciousness. Unstable, impermanent. Constantly rising and vanishing. This is suffering and not self.

From this Sutta also, it is quite obvious that the five aggregates are void of permanent substance, wholesome, pleasant inner core, and are subservient to one's will. They are not self, but they are of the nature of insubstantiality. We have amply made these points very clear. By virtue of having given respectful attention to this discourse on the Anattalakkhana Sutta may you all attain and realize soon, the Nibbana, by means of the Path and Fruition of your wish.

-The End-

(THIS IS THE ABRIDGED VERSION)



 

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The Dhammapada


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