- Buddhist Dictionary
- Manual of Buddhist Terms
by NYANATILOKA MAHATHERA
vácá: 'speech'. On right sp., s. magga
(3), sacca (IV.3). - Low talk, s. tiracchána-kathá.
vací-kamma: 'verbal action';
s. karma, kamma-patha.
karma-formation', or 'verbal function'.
(1) For verbal karma-formation, s. sankhára
(2) For verbal function (of mind), i.e.
thought-conception and discursive thinking, s. sankhára (I. 2).
vací-viññatti: s. viññatti.
vanishing, Contemplation of: vayánupassaná,
is one of the 18 chief kinds of insight (vipassána, q.v.).
vanishing and reappearing: knowledge
of the v. and r. of beings according to karma, is identical with the divine eye (s.
consisting in avoiding' (evil things), as distinguished from 'morality consisting in
performing' (good things). See caritta-varitta.
vasí: 'mastery'. Vis.M. IV
speaks of 5 kinds of m., which anyone who wishes to develop the absorptions (jhána,
q.v.) should acquire first of all, with regard to the 1st absorption, namely: mastery in
adverting to it (ávajjana-vasí), in entering it (samápajjana-vasí), in
determining it (adhitthána-vasí), in rising therefrom (vutthána-vasí),
in retrospection (paccavekkhana-vasí). - (App.).
"If wherever, whenever, and for
whatever duration desired, one enters the 1st absorption, and at one's entering it, no
slowness is experienced, this is called mastery in entering the absorption, etc. In an
analogous way, the 4 remaining kinds are to be explained" (Vis.M. IV, 131f; XXIII,
vatta: 1. 'round', 2. 'round of
(1) With reference to the dependent
origination (paticcasamuppáda, q.v.), Vis.M. XVII speaks of 3 rounds: the karma
round (kamma-vatta) comprising the karma-formations and the karmaprocess (2nd and
10th links); the round of defilements (kilesa-vatta) comprising ignorance, craving
and clinging (1st, 8th and 9th links); the round of results (vipáka-vatta)
comprising consciousness, mind and corporeality, 6 bases, impression, feeling (3rd-7th
links). Cf. paticcasamuppáda (diagram).
(2) round of rebirth = samsára
vatthu: 'physical base', i.e. the 6
physical organs on which the mental process is based, are the 5 physical sense-organs and,
according to the Com., the heart (hadaya-vatthu, q.v.) as the 6th. This 6th vatthu
must not be confounded with the 6th áyatana, which is a collective name for all
consciousness whatever. - (App.).
sensuality', the 5 sense-objects; s. káma.
defining. In its application to insight meditation, this term occurred first in Pts.M. (I,
p. 53); but in a verbal form, as a past participle, already in M. 111: tyassa dhammá
anupada-vavatthitá honti, "these things (the mental factors) were determined by
him (i.e. Sáriputta) successively" (s. Abh. St., p. 54). In Vis.M. XX, 130, it is
said: 'The determining of the truth of suffering is effected with the determining of
mind-and-body in the purification of view (s. visuddhi III). The determining of the
truth of origination is effected with the discerning of conditions in the purification by
transcending doubt (s. visuddhi IV). The determining of the truth of the path is
effected by emphasis on the right path in the purification by knowledge and vision of what
is path and not-path (s. visuddhi V). Thus the determining of the 3 truths
(suffering, origin, path) has been first effected by means of mundane (lokiya,
q.v.) knowledge only." - See sammasana, visuddhi.
For the determining of the 4 physical
elements, s. dhátuvavatthána.
of vanishing', is one of the 18 chief kinds of insight (vipassaná, q.v.).
váyo-dhátu: 'wind-element'; s. dhátu.
váyo-kasina 'wind-kasina', is one
of the kasina exercises (kasina, q.v.).
vedaná: 'feeling', sensation, is
the 2nd of the 5 groups of existence (s. khandha II). According to its nature, it
may be divided into 5 classes: (1) bodily agreeable feeling (káyiká sukhá-vedaná =
sukha); (2) bodily disagreeable feeling (káyiká dukkhá-vedaná = dukkhá); (3)
mentally agreeable feeling (cetasiká sukhá-vedaná = somanassa); (4) mentally
disagreeable feeling (cetasiká dukkhá-vedaná = domanassa); (5) indifferent or
neutral (adukkha-m-asukhá vedaná = upekkhá, q.v.).
With regard to the 6 senses, one
distinguishes 6 kinds of feeling: feeling associated with seeing, hearing, smelling,
tasting, bodily impression and mental impression. The textual wording of it is 'feeling
arisen through visual contact' (cakkhu-samphassajá vedaná; S. XXII, 55; D. 22),
Feeling is one of the 7 mental factors
inseparably associated with all consciousness whatever, s. náma. In the formula of
the dependent origination (paticcasamuppáda, q.v.), feeling is the condition for
the arising of craving (tanhá). The above-mentioned 5 kinds of feeling are
enumerated amongst the 22 faculties (indriya, q.v.). - See M. 59; Contemplation of
Feeling (Vedaná Samyutta), by Nyanaponika Thera (WHEEL 303/304).
of feeling', is one of the 4 foundations of mindfulness (satipatthána q.v.).
vehapphala is the name of a class
of heavenly beings in the fine-material world; s. deva.
verbal action: vací-kamma; s.
verbal functions of mind: vací-sankhára;
of a Buddha is fourfold. He is confident: 1. to have attained to a perfect Enlightenment
of which it cannot be said that it omits anything essential to it; 2. to have destroyed
all cankers (ásava), leaving none that can be said to be undestroyed by him; 3.
that what were declared by him as obstacles to liberation are undeniably such; 4. that his
teaching fulfils its purpose of actually leading to final liberation from suffering. See
A. IV, 8; VII, 58; M. 12.
vibhajja-váda: 'analytical or
discriminating doctrine' is an early name for the original Buddha doctrine, called
Theraváda. - The term vibhajja-vádí occurs in M. 99 and A. X, 94, though not in
the sense of a separate school, but as a characteristic of the Buddha himself: "Now,
by blaming what is blamable and praising what is praiseworthy, the Blessed One is a
'discriminating teacher' (vibhajja-vadí) and is not one-sided in his
teaching" (A. X, 94).
Buddhaghosa, in the introduction to his
Com. on the Kathávatthu, says that in Asoka's time, when the Sangha prospered, many
heretics took ordination as Buddhist monks but continued to spread their wrong doctrines.
For purifying the Sangha, Asoka, together with the venerable Moggaliputtatissa, summoned
assembly of the bhikkhus. When each of the assembled was individually questioned by the
king about what the Buddha taught, those who said that he was an eternalist (sassata-vadí),
etc. were expelled. The genuine bhikkhus replied that the Buddha was a vibhajja-vadí,
an 'analyst' or 'discriminating teacher'; and when, on the king's question,
Moggaliputtatissa confirmed that this was the correct view, those monks were admitted to
the Uposatha (q.v.) assembly of the Sangha, and from their midst the participants of the
3rd Council at Pataliputta were selected. - See Mahávamsa, tr. by Wilh. Geiger, Ch. V, v.
vibhava ditthi = uccheda-ditthi;
vibhava-tanhá: 'craving for
non-existence', or for self-annihilation; s. tanhá.
vicára: 'discursive thinking';
vicikicchá: 'sceptical doubt',
is one of the 5 mental hindrances (nívarana, q.v.) and one of the 3 fetters
(samyojana, q.v.), which disappear for ever at Stream-entry, the first stage of
holiness (s. ariya-puggala). As a fetter, it refers to sceptical doubt about the
Master (the Buddha), the Teaching, the Sangha, and the training; about things past and
future, and conditionality (Dhs. 1004; cf. A . X, 71 ) . It also applies to uncertainty
whether things are wholesome or not, to be practised or not, of high or low value, etc.
According to Vis.M. XIV, 177, vicikicchá is the lack of desire to think (things
out i.e. to come to a conclusion; vigata-cikicchá, desiderative to Ö cit,
to think); it has the nature of wavering, and its manifestation is indecision and a
divided attitude; its proximate cause is unwise attention to matters of doubt. It is
associated with one of the 2 classes of unwholesome consciousness rooted in delusion (Tab.
I, No. 32). - See also kankhá.
view, right: sammá-ditthi;
s. ditthi, magga 1, sacca IV, 1. - For wrong view, s. ditthi.
vigata-paccaya: 'disappearance', is
one of the 24 conditions (paccaya, q.v.).
vihára: 'abode' There are 3
abodes: the heavenly abode (dibba-vihára), the divine abode (brahma-vihára,
q.v.), the noble abode (ariya-vihára). See A. III, 63; D. 33.
vijjá: '(higher) knowledge',
gnosis. For the 3-fold k., s. abhiññá and te-vijjá. Cf. foll.
vijjá-carana: knowledge and
conduct'. This expression occurs in those passages in the suttas where the qualities of a
Buddha are described, namely: Truly, the Blessed One is holy, is fully enlightened,
perfect in knowledge and conduct..." According to Vis.M. VII, 1 and D. 3, knowledge
(vijjá) refers here either to the 3-fold knowledge (s. te-vijjá), or to the 8
kinds of knowledge, namely: the 6 higher spiritual powers (abhiññá, q.v.),
insight (vipassaná, q.v.), and magical power (iddhi, q.v.); whilst conduct (carana)
refers to 15 things: moral restraint, watching over the sense-doors, moderation in eating,
wakefulness, faith, moral shame, moral dread, great learning, energy, mindfulness, wisdom
and the 4 absorptions.
by repression' (or 'suspension'), is one of the 5 kinds of overcoming (pahána, q.v.).
vikubbaná-iddhi: the 'power of
transformation', is one of the magical faculties (iddhi, q.v.).
vimamsá: 'investigation, inquiry,
pondering', is one of the 4 roads to power (iddhi-páda, q.v.) and one of the 4
factors of predominance (s. paccaya, 3).
(deliverance). I. the 3; II. the 8.
I. The 3 liberations are: 1. the
conditionless (or signless) liberation (animitta-v.), 2. the desireless liberation (apanihita-v.),
3. the emptiness (or void) liberation (suññatá-v. ). They are also called
'the triple gateway to liberation' (vimokkha-mukha; Vis.M. XXI, 66ff), as they are
three different approaches to the paths of holiness. - See visuddhi VI, 8. Cf. Vis
XXI, 6ff, 121ff; Pts.M. II. Vimokkha-Kathá.
1. "Whosoever being filled with
determination (adhimokkha, q.v.), considers all formations as impermanent (anicca),
such a one attains the conditionless liberation. 2. Whosoever being filled with
tranquillity, considers all formations as painful (dukkha), such a one attains the
desireless liberation. 3. Whosoever being filled with wisdom, considers all formations as
without a self (anattá), such a one attains the emptiness liberation" (Vis.M.
XXI, 70 = Pts.M. II, p. 58).
(1) and (2) are mentioned and explained in
M. 43, under the name of deliverances of mind (ceto-vimutti, q.v.). - (2) and (3)
appear in Dhs. (344ff, 353ff) in the section on supermundane consciousness (see
Atthasálini Tr., p. 299ff).
II. The 8 liberations (attha vimokkha)
occur frequently in the texts (A. VIII, 66; D. 16, etc.) and are described as follows:
"There are 8 liberations, o monks.
Which are these?
(1) ''Whilst remaining in the
fine-material sphere (rúpí), one perceives corporeal forms: this is the first
(2) "Not perceiving corporcal forms
on one's own person, one perceives corporcal forms externally: this is the 2nd liberation.
(3) ''By thinking of the beautiful, one is
filled with confidence: this is the 3rd liberation.
(4) "Through the total ovcrcoming of
the corporeality-perceptions, the vanishing of the reflex-perceptions, and the
non-attention to the multiformity-perceptions, with the idea 'Unbounded is space', one
reaches the sphere of unbounded space (ákásánañcáyatana) and abides therein:
this is the 4th liberation.
(5) "Through the total ovcrcoming of
the sphere of unbounded space, and with the idea 'Unbounded is consciousness', one reaches
the sphere of unbounded consciousness (viññánañcáyatana) and abides therein:
this is the 5th liberation.
(6) "Through the total overcoming of
the sphere of unbounded consciousness, and with the idea 'Nothing is there', one reaches
the sphere of nothingness (ákiñeaññáyatana) and abides therein: this is the
(7) "Through the total overcoming of
the sphere of nothingness, one reaches the sphere of neither-perception-nor-non-perception
(n'eva-saññá-násaññáyatana) and abides therein: this is the 7th liberation .
(8) "Through the total overcoming of
the sphere of neither-perception-nor-non-perception, one reaches the extinction of
perception and feeling (s. nirodha-samápatti): this is the 8th liberation.
These, o monks, are the 8 kinds of
For (1-3), s. abhibháyatana; for
(4-7), s. jhána; for (8), s. nirodha-samápatti.
By (3) is meant the attainment of the
fine-material absorptions (jhána, q.v.) by means of concentrating the mind on
perfectly pure and bright colours as objects of the kasina (q.v.). According to Pts.M.
this mental state is produced also by concentrating the mind on the 4 sublime states, i.e.
all-embracing kindness, compassion, sympathetic joy and equanimity, in consequence of
which allbeings appear perfectly pure and glorified, and thus the mind turns to the
See Pts.M. II, Vimokkha-kathá;
Atthasálini Tr., p. 255; App.
vimutti: 'deliverance', is of 2
kinds: deliverance of mind (ceto-vimutti, q.v.) and deliverance through wisdom
'Deliverance of mind', in the highest
sense, is that kind of concentration (samádhi) which is bound up with the path of
Arahatship (arahatta-magga); 'deliverance through wisdom' is the knowledge
(ñána) bound up with the fruition of Arahatship (arahatta-phala). Cf. A. V,
There are also 5 kinds of deliverance,
identical with the 5 kinds of overcoming (pahána, q.v.).
vinipáta: 'world of suffering', is
another name for the 4 woeful courses (duggati; s. gati) of existence, and
for the 4 lower worlds (apáya, q.v.).
The Stream-Winner (sotápanna,
q.v.) is no longer subject to rebirth in them (avinipáta-dhamma).
viññána: 'consciousness', is
one of the 5 groups of existence (aggregates; khandha, q.v.); one of the 4
nutriments (áhára, q.v.); the 3rd link of the dependent origination (paticcasamuppáda,
q.v.); the 5th in the sixfold division of elements (dhátu, q.v.).
Viewed as one of the 5 groups (khandha),
it is inseparably linked with the 3 other mental groups (feeling, perception and
formations) and furnishes the bare cognition of the object, while the other 3 contribute
more specific functions. Its ethical and karmic character, and its greater or lesser
degree of intensity and clarity, are chiefly determined by the mental formations
associated with it.
Just like the other groups of existence,
consciousness is a flux (viññána-sotá, 'stream of c.') and does not constitute
an abiding mind-substance; nor is it a transmigrating entity or soul. The 3
characteristies (s. ti-lakkhana), impermanence, suffering and no-self, are
frequently applied to it in the texts (e.g., in the Anattalakkhana Sutta, S.XXII, 59). The
Buddha often stressed that "apart from conditions, there is no arising of
consciousness' (M 38); and all these statements about its nature hold good for the entire
range of consciousness, be it "past, future or presently arisen, gross or subtle, in
oneself or external, inferior or lofty, far or near" (S. XXII, 59).
According to the 6 senses it divides into
6 kinds, viz. eye- (or visual) consciousness (cakkhu-v.), etc. About the dependent
arising of these 6 kinds of consciousness, Vis.M. XV, 39 says: 'Conditioned through the
eye, the visible object, light and attention, eye-consciousness arises. Conditioned
through the ear, the audible object, the ear-passage and attention, ear-consciousness
arises. Conditioned, through the nose, the olfactive object, air and attention,
nose-consciousness arises. Conditioned through the tongue, the gustative object, humidity
and attention, tongue-consciousness arises. Condlitioned through the body, bodily
impression, the earth-element and attention, body-consciousness arises. Conditioned
through the subconscious mind (bhavanga-mano), the mind-object and attention,
The Abhidhamma literature distinguishes 89
crasses of consciousness, being either karmically wholesome, unwholesome or neutral, and
belonging either to the sense-sphere, the fine-material or the immaterial sphere, or to
supermundane consciousness. See Table I.
viññána-kicca: 'functions of
consciousness', as exercised within a process of consciousness or cognitive series (cittavíthi).
In the Abhidhamma Com. and Vis.M. XIV the following functions are mentioned: rebirth (patisandhi),
subconsciousness (bhavanga), advertence (ávajjana), seeing, hearing,
smelling, tasting, body-consciousness; recciving (sampaticchana), investigating (santírana),
determining (votthapana), impulsion (javana), registering (tadárammana),
A single unit of sense-perception
(e.g. visual consciousness), being conditioned through a sense-organ and its corresponding
object, forms in reality an extremely complex process, in which all the single phases of
consciousness follow one upon another in rapid succession, while performing their
respective functions, e.g.:
"As soon as a visible object has
entered the range of vision, it acts on the sensitive eye-organ (cakkhu-pasáda), and
conditioned thereby an excitation of the subconscious stream (bhavanga-sota) takes
"As soon, however, as
subconsciousness is broken off, the functional mind-element (s. Tab. I, 70), grasping the
object and breaking through the subconscious stream, performs the function of 'adverting'
the mind towards the object (ávajjana).
"Immediately thereupon there
arises at the eye-door, and based on the sensitive eye-organ, the eye-consciousness, while
performing the function of 'seeing' (dassana).... Immediately thereafter there
arises the mind-element (Tab
I, 39, 55) performing the function of
'receiving' (sampaticchana) the object of that consciousness....
''Immediately thereafter there arises...
the mind-consciousness-element (Tab. I, 40, 41, 56), while 'investigating' (santirana)
the object received by the mind-element...
"Immediately thereafter there arises
the functional, rootless mind-consciousness-element (Tab. I, 71), accompanied by
indifference, while performing the function of 'determining' (votthapana) the
"Now, if the object is large, then
immediately afterwards there flash forth 6 or 7 'impulsive moments' (javana-citta),
constituted by one of the 8 wholesome, or 12 unwholesome, or 9 functional classes of
consciousness (Tab. I, 1-8; 22-23; 72-80).
''Now, if at the end of the impulsive
moments, the object at the five-sense doors is very large, and at the mind-door clear,
then there arises, once or twice, one of the 8 root-accompanied, karma-resultant classes
of consciousness (Tab. I, 42-49) of the sense-sphere, or one of the 3 rootless
karma-resultant mind-consciousness-elements (Tab. I, 40, 41, 56).... Because this
consciousness after the vanishing of the impulsive moments, possesses the faculty
continuing with the object of the subconsciousness, taking the object of the
subconsciousness as its own object, therefore it is called 'registering' (tadárarmmana,
lit. 'that object', or 'having that as object')" (Vis.M. XIV, 115ff).
If, however, the sense-object is weak,
then it reaches merely the stage of 'impulsion' (javana), or of 'determining'
(votthapana); if very weak, only an excitation ot the subconsciousness takes place.
The proeess of the inner or
mind-consciousness, i.e. without participation of the 5 physical senses, is as follows: in
the case that the mind-objeet entering the mind-door is distinct, then it passes through
the stages of 'advertence at the mind-door' (manodvárávajjana), the 'impulsive
stage' and the 'registering stage', before finally sinking into the subconscious stream. -
Literature: Aids to the
Abhidhamma Philosophy, by Dr. C.B Dharmasena (with colour chart of the Cognitive Series;
WHEEL 63/64). - The Psychology and Philosophy of Buddhism, by Dr. W. F. Javasuriya
(Buddhist Missionary Socy., Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia).
of boundless consciousn is a name for the 2nd meditiative absorption in the immateria
sphere (s. jhána, 6).
viññána-tthiti: 'abodes or
supports of consciousness'. The texts describe 7 such abodes (e.g. A. VII, 41):
(1) "There are beings who are
different in body and different in perception, such as men, some heavenly beings, and some
beings living in states of suffering (s. apáya). This is the 1st abode of
(2) "There are beings who are
different in body but equal in perception, such as the first-born gods of the Brahmaworld
(s. deva II). This is the 2nd abode of consciousness.
(3) "There are beings who are equal
in body but different in perception, such as the Radiant Gods (ábhassara-deva).
This is the 3rd abode of consciousness.
(4) ''There are beings who are equal in
body and equal in perception, such as the All-illuminating Gods (subhakinha-deva).
This is the 4th abode of consciousness.
(5) "There are beings ... reborn in
the sphere of boundless space. This is the 5th abode of consciousness.
(6) "There are beings ... reborn in
the sphere of boundless consciousness. This is the 6th abode of consciousness.
(7) There are beings... reborn in the
sphere of nothingness. This is the 7th abode of consciousness"
About the 3 last-named spheres, s. jhána
(5-7). Cf. sattávása.
In D. 33 there are mentioned 4 viññána-tthiti,
apparently in the sense of 'bases' of consciousness, namely: corporeality, feeling,
perception, mental formations, which in S. XXII, 53 are further explained.
viññatti: (lit. 'making known')
'intimation', is an Abhidhamma term for bodily expression (káya-viññatti) and
verbal expression (vací-viññatti), both belonging to the corporeality-group.
They are produced by the co-nascent volition, and are therefore, as such, purely physical
and not to be confounded with karma (q.v.), which as such is something mental. Cf. Kath.
80, 100, 101, 103, 194 (s. Guide V). - (App.).
"One speaks of 'bodily expression',
because it makes known an intention by means of bodily movement, and can itself be
understood by the bodily movement which is said to be corporeal.
" 'Verbal expression' is so called
because it makes known an intention by means of a speech-produced noise" (Vis.M.
vipacitaññu (or vipañcitaññu):
'one who realizes the truth after explanation.' Thus is called one who realizes the truth
only after detailed explanation of that which already had been said to him in a concise
form. Cf. ugghatitaññu.
vipáka: 'karma-result', is any
karmically (morally) neutral mental phenomenon (e.g. bodily agreeable or painful feeling,
sense-consciousness, etc. ), which is the result of wholesome or unwholesome volitional
action (karma, q.v.) through body, speech or mind, done either in this or some previous
life. Totally wrong is the belief that, according to Buddhism, everything is the result of
previous action. Never, for example, is any karmically wholesome or unwholesome volitional
action the result of former action, being in reality itself karma. On this subject s. tittháyatana,
karma, Tab. I; Fund II. Cf. A. III, 101; Kath. 162 (Guide, p. 80).
Karma-produced (kammaja or kamma-samutthána)
corporeal things are never called kamma-vipáka, as this term may be applied only
to mental phenomena.
condition' is one of the 24 conditions (paccaya, q.v.).
vipallása: 'perversions' or
'distortions'. - ''There are 4 perversions which may be either of perception (saññá-vipallása),
of consciousness (citta v.) or of views (ditthi-v.). And which are these
four? To regard what is impermanent (anicca) as permanent; what is painful (dukkha)
as pleasant (or happiness-yielding); what is without a self (anattá) as a self;
what is impure (ugly: asubha) as pure or beautiful'' (A. IV, 49). - See Manual of
Insight, by Ledi Sayadaw (WHEEL 31/32). p.5.
"Of the perversions, the following
are eliminated by the 1st path-knowledge (sotápatti): the perversions of
perception, consciousness and views, that the impermanent is permanent and what is not a
self is a self; further, the perversion of views that the painful is pleasant, and the
impure is pure. By the 3rd path-knowledge (anágámitá) are eliminated: the
perversions of perception and consciousness that the impure is pure. By the 4th
path-knowledge (arahatta) are eliminated the perversions of perception and
consciousness that the painful is pleasant" (Vis.M. XXII, 68).
of change' (of all things), is one of the 18 chief kinds of insight (vipassaná,
vipassaná: 'insight', is the
intuitive light flashing forth and exposing the truth of the impermanency, the suffering
and the impersonal and unsubstantial nature of all corporeal and mental phenomena of
existence. It is insight-wisdom (vipassaná-paññá) that is the decisive
liberating factor in Buddhism, though it has to be developed along with the 2 other
trainings in morality and concentration. The culmination of insight practice (s. visuddhi
VI) leads directly to the stages of holiness (s. visuddhi VII).
Insight is not the result of a mere
intellectual understanding, but is won through direct meditative observation of one's own
bodily and mental processes. In the commentaries and the Vis.M., the sequene in developing
insight-meditation is given as follows: 1. discernment of the corporeal (rúpa), 2.
of the mental (náma), 3. contemplation of both (námarúpa; i.e. of their
pairwise occurrence in actual events, and their interdependence), 4. both viewed as
conditioned (application of the dependent origination, paticcasamuppáda), 5.
application of the 3 characteristics (impermanency, etc.) to mind-and-body-cum-conditions.
The stages of gradually growing insight
are described in the 9insight- knowledges (vipassaná-ñána), constituting the 6th
stage of purification: beginning with the 'knowledge of rise and fall' and ending with the
'adaptation to Truth'. For details, see visuddhi VI and Vis.M. XXI.
Eighteen chief kinds of insight-knowledge
(or principal insights, mahá-vipassaná) are listed and described in Vis.M. XXII,
113: (1) contemplation of impermanence (aniccánupassaná), (2) of suffering (dukkhánupassaná),
(3) of no self (anattánupnupassaná), (4) of aversion (nibbidánupassaná).
(5) of detachment (virágánupassaná), (6) of extinction (nirodhánupassaná),
(7) of abandoning (patinissaggánupassaná), (8) of waning (khayánupassaná),
(9) of vanishing (vayánupassaná), (10) of change (viparinámánupassaná),
(11) of the unconditioned (or signless, animittánupassaná), (12) of
desirelessness (apanihitánupassaná), (13) of emptiness (suññatáupassaná),
(14) insight into phenomena which is higher wisdom (adhipaññá-dhamma-vipassaná),
(15) knowledge and vision according to reality (yathá-bhúta-ñánadassana), (16)
contemplation of misery (or danger, ádínavánupassaná), (17) reflecting
contemplation (patisankhánupassaná), (18) contemplation of turning away (vivattanánupassaná).
Through these 18, the adverse ideas
and views are overcome, for which reason this way of overcoming is called 'overcoming by
the opposite' (tadanga-pahána, overcoming this factor by that). Thus (1) dispels
the idea of permanence. (2) the idea of happiness, (3) the idea of self, (4) lust, (5)
greed, (6) origination, (7) grasping, (8) the idea of compactness, (9) karma-accumulation,
(10) the idea of lastingness, (11) the conditions, (12) delight, (13) adherence, (14)
grasping and adherence to the idea of substance, (15) attachment and adherence, (17)
thoughtlessness, (18) dispels entanglement and clinging.
Insight may be either mundane (lokiya,
q.v.) or supermundane (lokuttara, q.v.). Supermundane insight is of 3 kinds: (1)
joined with one of the 4 supermundane paths, (2) joined with one of the fruitions of these
paths, (3) regarding the extinction, or rather suspension, of consciousness (s. nirodha-samápatti).
See samatha-vipassaná, visuddhi,
Literature: Manual of Insight, by Ledi
Sayadaw (WHEL 31/32). Practical Insight Meditation, Progress of Insight, both by Mahási
Sayadaw (BPS). The Experience of Insight, by Joseph Goldstein (BPS).