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Cittaviprayuktasaṃskāra

From Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia
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cittaviprayuktasaṃskāra;. (T. sems dang ldan pa ma yin pa’i ’du byed; C. xin buxiangying fa; J. shinfusōōbō; K. sim pulsangŭng pŏp 心不相應法).

In Sanskrit, “conditioned forces dissociated from thought”; forces that are associated with neither materiality (RŪPA) nor mentality (CITTA) and thus are listed in a separate category of factors (DHARMA) in ABHIDHARMA materials associated with the SARVĀSTIVĀDA school and in the hundred-dharmas (BAIFA) list of the YOGĀCĀRA school. These conditioned forces were posited to account for complex moral and mental processes (such as the states of mind associated with the higher spheres of meditation, where both physicality and mentality were temporarily suspended), and anomalous doctrinal problems (such as how speech was able to convey meaning or how group identity was established). A standard listing found in the DHARMASKANDHA and PRAKARAṆAPĀDA, two texts of the Sarvāstivāda abhidharma canon, includes sixteen dissociated forces:

(1) possession (PRĀPTI);
(2) equipoise of nonperception (ASAṂJÑĀSAMĀPATTI);
(3) equipoise of cessation (NIRODHASAMĀPATTI);
(4) nonperception (āsaṃjñika);
(5) vitality (JĪVITA);
(6) homogeneity (sabhāgatā);
(7) acquisition the corporeal basis (*āśrayapratilābha);
(8) acquisition of the given entity (*vastuprāpti);
(9) [[acquisition of the sense spheres (*āyatanaprāpti); the four conditioned characteristics (SAṂSKṚTALAKṢAṆA), viz.,
(10) origination, or birth (JĀTI);
(11) continuance}, or maturation (STHITI);
(12) senescence, or decay (JARĀ); and
(13) desinence, or death (anityatā);
(14) name set (nāmakāya);
(15) phrase set (padakāya);
16) syllable set (vyañjanakāya).

The later treatise ABHIDHARMAKOŚABHĀṢYA includes only fourteen, dropping numbers 7, 8, 9 and adding nonpossession (APRĀPTI). These listings, however, constituted only the most generic and comprehensive types employed by the VAIBHĀṢIKA school of Sarvāstivāda abhidharma; the cittaviprayuktasaṃskāras thus constituted an open category, and new forces could be posited as the need arose in order to resolve thorny doctrinal issues. The four conditioned characteristics (saṃskṛtalakṣaṇa) are a good example of why the cittaviprayuktasaṃskāra category was so useful in abhidharma-type analysis. In the Sarvāstivāda treatment of causality, these four characteristics were forcesthat exerted real power over compounded objects, escorting an object along from origination, to continuance, to senescence or decay, until the force “desinence,” or death finally extinguishes it; this rather tortured explanation was necessary in order to explain how factors that the school presumed continued to exist in all three time periods (TRIKĀLA) of past, present, and future nevertheless still appeared to undergo change. The YOGĀCĀRA school subsequently includes twenty-four cittaviprayuktasaṃskāras in its list of one hundred dharmas (see BAIFA), including such elements as the state of an ordinary being (pṛthagjanatva), time (KĀLA), place (deśa), and number (saṃkhyā).