Anusaya, sankhara

What is correct relationship between anusaya (underlying tendencies) and sankharas (kamma resultants)? :pray:

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Anusaya is ways of craving due to sakkaya ditthi, as I understand. Craving occurs in the mind - citta sankhara, as intention (cetanā) leads the actions (kaya kamma, vaci kamma, mano kamma).

Anusaya should be compared with vasana (which is not sankhara).

Vasana is (also) tendency/habitual, which remains with arahants - individually or forming individualism. Vasana (Pali word in Theravada context) is innocent, whilst anusaya is taint (kilesa). Examples for vasana: some people speak loud, some speak fast, some blink often, and so on, which occur with no intention (cetanā).

Sankhara is ‘formation’ - citta sankhara is mental formation, which is our concern. Generally, it’s thought formation or thinking. We constantly think (due to craving (tanha) - anusaya), just more or less compulsively (uddhacca). The opposite of uddhacca is tranquility (samadhi, jhana, samatha, indriya, sikkha , indriya -samvara-sīla)…

Citta-sankhara becomes apparent during meditation. Controlling the mind becomes a struggle. Those who lost would let the mind wander and the mind will never become developed or skilful in handling the mind. Like controlling the horses when one drive the chariot, one should be able to control the mind. Then one develops (Samma) Sati and (Samma) Samadhi.

See Anusaya Sutta

anusaya: the 7 ‘proclivities’, inclinations, or tendencies are: sensuous greed (kāma-rāga , s. saṃyojana ), grudge (paṭigha ), speculative opinion (diṭṭhi , q.v.), skeptical doubt (vicikicchā , q.v.), conceit (māna , q.v.), craving for continued existence (bhavarāga ), ignorance (avijjā , q.v.) (D. 33; A. VII, 11, 12)

Vāsanā, (f.) (fr. vasati2 = vāsa2, but by Rh. D. following the P. Com̄. connected with vāseti & vāsa3) that which remains in the mind, tendencies of the past, impression, usually as pubba° former impression (Sn. 1009; Miln. 10, 263).—Cp. Nett 4, 21, 48, 128, 133 sq. 153, 158 sq. 189 sq.—Cp. BSk. vāsanā, e.g. MVastu I. 345. (Page 610)

Let me know what you think of my speculative opinion (diṭṭhi)
Also see atta and mana.

attā: 'self, ego, personality, is in Buddhism a mere conventional expression (vohāradesanā), and no designation for anything really existing; s. paramattha-desanā , anattā, puggala, satta, jīva.

atimāna: ‘superiority-conceit’; s. māna.

māna: ‘conceit’, pride, is one of the 10 fetters binding to existence (s. saṃyojana ). It vanishes completely only at the entrance to Arahatship, or Holiness (cf. asmi-māna ). It is further one of the proclivities (s. anusaya ) and defilements (s. kilesa ). "
The (equality-) conceit (māna), the inferiority-conceit (omāna) and the superiority-conceit (atimāna): this threefold conceit should be overcome. For, after overcoming this threefold conceit, the monk, through the full penetration of conceit, is said to have put an end suffering" (A. VI, 49).

“Those ascetics and Brahman priests who, relying on this impermanent, miserable and transitory nature of corporeality, feelings, perceptions, mental formations and consciousness, fancy: ‘Better am I’, or ‘Equal am I’, or ‘Worse am I’, all these imagine thus through not understanding reality” (S. XXII, 49).

uddhacca: ‘restlessness’, belongs to the 10 fetters (saṃyojana, q.v.), and to the 5 hindrances (nīvaraṇa, q.v.). It is one of those 4 mental factors inseparably associated with all unwholesome consciousness (akusala-sādhārana , q.v.). Cf. Tab. II.

See Pali dictionary saṅkhāra

  1. As the 2nd link of the formula of dependent origination, (paṭiccasamuppāda, q.v.), saṅkhāra has the active aspect, 'forming, and signifies kamma (q.v.), i.e. wholesome or unwholesome volitional activity (cetanā) of body (kāya-s.), speech (vacī-s.) or mind (citta- or mano-s. ).
  1. It also denotes the 4th group of existence (saṅkhārakkhandha), and includes all ‘mental formations’ whether they belong to ‘kammically forming’ consciousness or not. See khandha, Tab. II. and S. XXII, 56, 79.

saṅkhārupekkhā-ñāṇa: the ‘equanimity-knowledge with regard to the formations of existence’, is one of those kinds of knowledge which form the ‘purification by knowledge and vision of the path-progress’ (s. visuddhi , VI, 8). "It is known by 3 names: in the lowest stage it is called ‘knowledge consisting in the desire for deliverance’ (muccitu-kamyatā-ñāṇa); in the middle stage it is called the ‘reflecting contemplation’ (paṭisaṅkhānupassanāñāṇa); in the last stage, however, i.e. after attaining the summit, it is called the ‘equanimity-knowledge with regard to the formations of existence’ " (Vis.M. XXI).

OK. I’m not a scholar, more a practitioner who occasionally dips into suttas. Much of the time in order to keep focused on The Dhamma when the mind is drifting or to gain some hindsight insight. So, while grateful it’ll take time to digest that and comment meaningfully.

If some simple english explanations are possible that would be appreciated too.

In the chachakka sutta mn148 there is this:

"Bhikkhus, dependent on the mind and mind-objects, mind-consciousness arises; the meeting of the three is mind-contact; with mind-contact as condition there arises [a mind-feeling] felt as pleasant or painful or neither-painful-nor-pleasant. When one is touched by a pleasant mind-feeling, if one does not delight in it, welcome it, and remain holding to it, then the underlying tendency to lust does not lie within one. When one is touched by a painful mind-feeling, if one does not sorrow, grieve and lament, does not weep beating one’s breast and become distraught, then the underlying tendency to aversion does not lie within one. When one is touched by a neither-painful-nor-pleasant mind-feeling, if one understands as it actually is the origination, the disappearance, the gratification, the danger, and the escape in regard to that mind-feeling, then the underlying tendency to ignorance does not lie within one. Bhikkhus, that one shall here and now make an end of suffering by abandoning the underlying tendency to lust for pleasant mind-feeling, by abolishing the underlying tendency to aversion for painful mind-feeling, by extirpating the underlying tendency to ignorance in regard to neither-painful-nor-pleasant mind-feeling, by abandoning ignorance and arousing true knowledge - this is possible."

So, there is a feeling, a reaction AND an underlying tendency? I’ve always kind of glossed over that part. My experience is that if there is an equanimous mindfulness of the rise and fall of feelings there is a process of mind purification and an increase in true knowledge.iow progress on the path.

Is the “delight, welcoming, clinging, sorrow, grief, lamentation, weeping, breast beating, distress and ignoring” the sankharas and “lust, aversion and ignorance” the underlying tendencies?

Or is sankhara relevant here at all. It’s the underlying tendencies that are to be abandoned.

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That is translated as ‘innate mental desire’ in this book. See top line of page 17. ChaChakka Sutta: Analytical Interpretation From The Tripitaka Pali Along With The Path To Nibbana In Hela Language : Dr. Gamini Randeni BSc MSc MA(Ed) PhD RPN, Ven. Meewanapalane Siridhammalankara Thero : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive

The key word here is Ayatana or the senses. Sankhara is mental formation, so it’s one of the six. It’s also to do with perception (sanna). Read the following page, and also search for the six ayatana: not mine, not I, not self, but just as phenomena…

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These portions from the book seem relevant. It’ll take me some time to figure out what all the foreign words mean. In the meantime if someone can restate all that in plain English (as if the reader is a simple person) it could be helpful.

“This sŭtta analyses precisely how avijjā anŭsaya arises due to adhŭkkama sŭkhāya vædanāya.”

“As a result of the process of kŭsalamŭla patichcha samŭppāda dhamma running through the agencies of chakkŭ, sotha, ghāna jivhā, kāya and mano, vædanā are terminated (niroda) when they arise by avoiding attraction to sŭva vædanā, conflicting with dŭk- vædanā, being deceived by adŭkhamasŭkha vædanā while recognizing their true nature with contemplative patience. Here, an ariya srāvaka understands practically the desire to feel (assādo) vædanā is the main (mŭla) and underlying reason for ŭpādāna and by experiencing sankhāra ŭpekkhā mentally, he/she can terminate (niroda) rāgānŭsaya forever. It never arises again. Rāgānŭsaya dissipate from the ćitta santhānaya; circumvent (pativinodæthvā) conflicting with patighānŭsaya; avijjānŭsaya has no foothold and leave (samŭhanithvā) the ćitta santhānaya altogether. This results in “avijjan pahāya, vijjan ŭppādæthvā”. With this an ariya srāvaka becomes skillful to understand the true reality of existence and is able to comprehend its reality (parama sathya) penetratively.”