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 Unwholesome Mind Conditioners

This talk continues a review of the 52 cetasikas, those functions that condition how self-organization is formed, with emphasis on the 14 unwholesome mind conditioners.  Each is reviewed and their interactions with other ethically malleable mind conditioning functions is described.  The intention is to be able to understand the mind conditioners conceptually and then be able to be immediately aware of their operation through the cultivation of mindful investigation.  The goal of this practice is to “deconstruct” the misconception that there is an enduring and autonomous self.  To further this insight, this talk is complemented by a recording of the same evening, found in the archive of this site entitled “Contemplating The Unwholesome Mind Conditioners”

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  2021 THE-UNWHOLESOME-MIND-CONDITIONERS  Here is a document that shows all 52 of the cetasikas:  CETASIKAS POSTER

Next week’s talk will review the 7 Universal Wholesome Cetasikas, which function in every moment of experience that is unaffected by dukkha.


Guided Understanding Desire Meditation

This training meditation cultivates clear awareness of the characteristics of desire: An initial pleasant feeling that, when not investigated wisely, quickly becomes craving and clinging–dukkha.  During the recording there are intervals for cultivating mindfulness of breathing, then contemplating a state of mind that involves desire–a song melody, desired success in some project, etc., accompanied by investigation of how this experience changes the pattern of breathing, creates muscle tension and an insistent internal narrative that becomes enchanted with sustaining itself and the accompanying feeling.  You are then invited to redirect attention back to the breath and investigate the changes in breathing patterns, muscle tension and the absence of a demanding narrative, along with the calmness and clarity that emerges with prolonged, alert attention to the sensation of breathing.  This meditation is intended to accompany the talk entitled “The Unwholesomeness Of Desire, August 26, 2020”.


The Unwholesome Mind Conditioners

This talk continues the exploration of the section of the Anapanasati Sutta that refers to “…sensitive to the mind conditioners…calming the mind conditioners”.  The focus of tonight’s discussion are the 14 unwholesome mind conditioners.  During the dialogues, Peter emphasized that the elaborate categorization of the various mind conditioners isn’t intended to be just a scholarly, intellectual analysis, but rather a way to notice that each moment of self-experience is composed from different elemental conditioners. The practice of vipassana trains the mind to be agile enough and insightful enough to “see with the mind’s eye”  how the various conditioners can be noted, demonstrating that there is no solid, enduring self.

This recording is accompanied by the preceding post, containing notes for the presentation.  Next week’s exploration will begin to focus on the wholesome mind conditioners, as they function to overcome the unwholesome conditioners and build momentum towards awakening.