The last several talks investigated how the cultivation of anapanasati, mindfulness of breathing, creates the mental and emotional circumstances allowing for the onset of vipassana practice, that is, the ongoing observation of the ever-changing mental processes that constitute what we call a “self”.  The identification with this emergent “selfing” process creates distress and confusion, as the fabrication process cannot reliably reflect the most appropriate understanding of and response to ever-changing life circumstances.  During this talk, Peter describe the cetasikas conceptual structure as a way to understand the selfing process as made up through the action of sankharas (mental conditioning factors), which are “stored” through the combined manifestation of multiple elements stored in various cetasikas.  This explanation was followed by discussion among those attending to clarify the concepts, in preparation for more detailed discussions of the cetasikas in the following weeks.

Here are the notes prepared for this discussion:  Calming The Mental Formations

Next week’s discussions will cover the beginning cetasikas categories of Universal Cetasikas and Occasional Cetasikas.