Six Beautiful Pairs of Wholesome Mind Conditioners

The Six Beautiful Pairs of Wholesome Cetasikas represent the fulfillment of wholesomeness in the mind.  The integrated and unified functions of the Universal, Particular and seven Wholesome mind conditioning factors manifests as 12 integrated characteristics–six factors being among various aggregations of the wholesome factors and six representing their beneficial effects on consciousness.  The value of contemplating these mind conditioners comes from understanding the concepts involved, with emphasis on how to recognize them and unify their functioning to promote the process of Awakening.  During the talk, the relationship between these conditioners and the Seven Awakening Factors is clarified.


The topic for the next talk will be a review of the remaining mind conditioning factors, which represent direct realization of various elements of the Noble Eightfold Path.


Reviewing The Wholesome Mind Conditioners, Part 1

There are 25 wholesome mind conditioners described in Buddhist psychology; this talk reviews the first 7 of these functions.  They are present in each moment of consciousness, operating to free the mind from distress and confusion.  The value in reviewing them comes from first being able to identify them conceptually, then to recognize their operation in consciousness.  Ultimately, this awareness “deconstructs” the belief that there is an enduring, autonomous self–instead, there is direct realization that the self is fabricated through the interactions of various functions.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  WHOLESOME MIND CONDITIONERS, PART ONE

The focus of next week’s talk will be on the “Six Beautiful Pairs” of wholesome mind conditioners, which represent the beneficial effect of the conditioners reviewed during this talk.


Reviewing The Mind Conditioners–Part 2

This talk reviews the 14 Unwholesome Cetasikas, categories of mind conditioning functions that create dukkha, the distress and confusion that constitute the “default mode” of one’s personality.  The core functions are ignorance regarding karma, desire for pleasurable experience and aversion to unpleasant experience.  The talk begins with a quick review of the Universal and Particular Cetasikas (Reviewed during the talk of August 31, 2022), which are considered to be ethically malleable, that is, influenced by either Unwholesome or Wholesome Cetasikas.  The Unwholesome Cetasikas are driven by basic instinctual drives that are poorly investigated and poorly regulated without the training supported by the 25 Wholesome Mind Conditioners, especially Mindfulness, which provides relief from dukkha.  The Wholesome Mind Conditioners will be reviewed in upcoming talks.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Reviewing The Mind Conditioners–Part 2

The focus for the next talk will be on the first 7 of the 25 Wholesome Mind Conditioners.


Reviewing The Mind Conditioners–Part 1

This is a first of a series of talks that review the cetasikas, “Those factors that condition the mind”.  There are 52 mind conditioners in Theravada Buddhist doctrine, and this review focuses on the first two subsections, the Universal and Particular cetasikas.  The remaining subsections, the Unwholesome and Wholesome cetasikas will be covered in future talks.  The benefits of understanding these concepts are realized when they can actually be noted while practicing mindfulness meditation, as they indicate the impersonal and fabricated nature of self-experience.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Reviewing Mind Conditioners-Part 1

The focus of the next talk will begin a review of the Unwholesome mind conditioners, which are the primary cause of dukkha, the distress and confusion of life.


Reviewing Dependent Origination

This talk provides a view of a core Buddhist concept that describes how karma is formed that differs from the traditional Theravaden understanding–instead of the terminology of Dependent Origination, a case is made for an alternative rendering, Contingent Provisional Emergence, which includes more contemporary concepts and research regarding the formative drives that create our personality structures.  This view complements comments from the previous meeting of August 17, 2022 regarding the Five Aggregates of Clinging, part of the Fourth Foundation of Mindfulness.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Understanding Contingent Provisional Emergence

Next week’s talk will begin a review of the Seven Awakening Factors, qualities of attention that significantly develop liberation from distress and confusion in the mind, leading to a transformative understanding regarding our self-state organizations.


Guided Five Aggregates Contemplation

This guided meditation provides an experiential review of the characteristic elements found in the section of the Fourth Foundation of Mindfulness dedicated to contemplating what is regarded as a Buddhist theory of personality.  it is intended to supplement the talk of October 18, 2022 titled “Reviewing the Five Aggregates of Clinging”.