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Yogācāra Substrata? Precedent Frames for Yogācāra Thought Among Third-Century Yoga Practitioners in Greater Gandhāra

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Daniel M. Stuart1


© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017


Abstract The connection between early yogācāras, or practitioners of yoga, and later Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da philosophy has long preoccupied scholars. But these connections remain obscure. This article suggests that a text that has received little attention in modern scholarship, the Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra, may shed light on aspects of early yogācāra contemplative cultures that gave rise to some of the formative dynamics of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought. I show how traditional Buddhist meditative practice and engagement with Abhidharma theoretics come together in the Saddharmasmṛtyuasthānasūtra to produce a novel theory of mind that mirrors many of the philosophical problematics that early and late Yoga¯ca¯ravijn ˜a¯nava¯dins confronted and attempted to work out in s ´a¯stric detail.


Keywords Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra · yogācāra · Meditation · ālayavijñāna · Consciousness · Experience


Introduction


In this paper, I outline a Buddhist theory of mind presented in a little-studied but important text, the Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra (Saddhsu). By analyzing a number of key passages in the Saddhsu, I demonstrate that the text is a key protos ´a¯stric touchstone that sheds light on some of the theoretical and practical dynamics that laid the ground for the philosophical developments evidenced in the Yoga¯ca¯ravijn ˜a¯nava¯da śāstras. The Saddhsu provides a new frame of reference—an intermediary literary and scholastic context—that allows us to discern certain continuities between a phenomenology of mind emerging from traditional Buddhist


& Daniel M. Stuart stuartd@mailbox.sc.edu

1 University of South Carolina, Rutledge College 329, Columbia, SC 29208, USA

123

J Indian Philos DOI 10.1007/s10781-017-9332-4


meditative practices, “canonical” texts, and a¯bhidharmic theories on the one hand, and later classical theories of mind, such as those of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯dins, on the other. I suggest that the Saddhsu itself offers a cogent attempt to outline how conscious experience emerges from basic forms of mind, which can be perceived in deep states of meditative discernment.1 By drawing attention to the importance of the Saddhsu for studying the history of Indian Buddhist practice and thought, I hope to show how a unique textual and practice tradition that has been given little scholarly attention might provide useful material for thinking broadly about such key practical and philosophical dynamics. While my approach is primarily descriptive, grounded in the details of the textual

tradition of the Saddhsu, I attempt to also provide a historical context for this textual material and relate its significance to modern scholarly discussions on the history of Yoga¯ca¯ravijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought. In particular, I present here passages from the second stage (bhūmi) of the Saddhsu’s second chapter that deal with the mind as a basic element of human experience, a central organizing locus of sense experience fundamentally intertwined with feelings/sensations. I show how the Saddhsu uses the manodhātu, or the mindelement, to bridge su ¯tric and a¯bhidharmic frameworks of thought and suggest that it

functionsincertainwaysasaprecursortotheālayavijñāna.Itisalsomorethanmerely incidental that this negotiation happens in the context of meditation on the six elements, and in connection with traditional su ¯tric models of meditation practice. The practice context, I argue, is central to the formation of this theory of mind. I then turn to the Saddhsu’s consideration of sense experience, the external world, and the relationship between mind and matter. I show how the text problematizes the actual existence of material sense-objects—and the material sense-spheres (āyatana) in general—and raises fundamental questions about how mind and matter interact. These queries are tentatively resolved through metaphors that allow for two different conceptions of the mind/consciousness: first, as an elemental constitutive component of reality, and second, as an emergent property. In the final sections of the article, I turn to the sixth chapter of the Saddhsu. I demonstrate how Abhidharma categories are employed and repurposed to gesture toward an illusionistic analysis of mind/consciousness. I then go on to explore the text’s treatment of rebirth and intermediate mental states (bhavāntara), in which the key technical term bhavāṅga or life-continuum consciousness—which Vasubandhu mentions as a precursor of the ālayavijñāna—helps to contribute to a more basic theory of mind within the larger text. In so doing, I show that the text enacts a theorization on, and enjoins a direct discernment of, the process of rebirth in the context of Abhidharma analysis and meditation on the body. The text thus provides a frame of reference that prefigures and possibly conditions integral developments within early and later Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da tradition.


1 I base my discussion on a series of passages from the Saddhsu, many of which have only recently been edited in their original Sanskrit. I quote here extensively from sections of the text that I have critically edited in a recently published monograph, A Less Traveled Path (Stuart 2015a), providing both Sanskrit text and English translations. I encourage the reader to consult the monograph for the full critical apparatus of the passages drawn from it. In the final section of the paper, I also draw on textual material that is only presently available in manuscript form, and in Chinese and Tibetan translation. Yoga¯ca¯ra Substrata?



The Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra


The Saddhsu is historically and textually heterogeneous, like many other authorless Buddhist sūtras. It has come down to us today in a form that was more or less fixed by the middle of the sixth century of the Common Era, when it was translated into Chinese (538 CE). However, textual work done by Lin Li-kouang and Kogen Mizuno suggests that it should not be dated to any later than the end of the fourth century, and that it was possibly produced much earlier (Lin and Demie ´ville 1949: 110–114; Mizuno 1964).2 It is thus reasonable to think that the text was composed sometime between the years 150 and 400 of the Common Era.3 If so, it was compiled at approximately the same time as some of the most famous and influential Maha¯ya¯na sūtras and is likewise generally contemporaneous with, or predates, some of the most important early s ´a¯stric sources on Buddhist practice, such as the Yogācārabhūmi attributed to Asan ˙ga (360–400 CE). The text as whole is a presentation of basic ethical and meditative practices expanded into a compendium of cosmology, structured loosely around the five gatis or realms of rebirth. The text describes an incremental path of Buddhist practice, beginning with the cultivation of the ten paths of wholesome conduct (daśa kuśalakarmapathāḥ) and

leading into a series of meditative forays in 18 stages (bhūmi).4 This practice emerged historically as an organic outgrowth of the canonical Buddhist meditative practice of distinguishing the six basic elements of human experience (ṣaḍ dhātavaḥ), which is represented historically in a single Buddhist sūtra from the Madhyamāgama (with a parallel in the Majjhimanikāya), the Sūtra on Distinguishing the Six Elements (Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra).5 The Saddhsu is a reworking of this early textual tradition, and builds on it in complex ways to form a much more elaborate system of philosophy. I have outlined the text’s


2 See also my own attempt to date the text in Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 43–46). 3 It remains possible that the text was composed earlier than 150 CE, but this cannot be determined with certainty at the moment. Much of the material in the text likely derives from much earlier layers of Buddhist textual history. 4 The Saddhsu as it has come down to us today is actually made up of two distinct sūtras: 1. The Saddharmasmṛtyupasthāna (T. 721, 17: 1b11–379a3; D no. 287, mdo sde, ya 82a1–sha 109b7) and 2. The *Kāyasmṛtyupasthāna (身念處法門; lus dran pa nye bar gzhag pa zhes bya ba'i chos kyi rnam grangs; T. 721, 17: 379a6–417c19; D no. 287, mdo sde, ya sha 109b7–227b7). I refer to the first sūtra when I speak of a contemplative program of eighteen stages. It is clear, however, that the

Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra and *Kāyasmṛtyupasthānsūtra together make up a complex of texts, which I refer to together and abbreviate as Saddhsu. The frame stories of both texts take place in the same setting, are taught to the same group of disciples, and the texts share a range of common categories and materials. The Chinese translators of the *Kāyasmṛtyupasthānasūtra conceived of it as the seventh chapter of the Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra, while the Tibetan translators made no explicit indication that they considered it a distinct text. I will draw on material from both sūtras in what follows, though my emphasis will be on the Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra’s foundational scheme of practice, which I take also to be foundational to the *Kāyasmṛtyupasthānsūtra. 5 The details of the

relationship between the Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra and the Saddhsu are complex. I will touch on them below. For a full accounting of the intertextual relationships in the Saddhsu, see Stuart (2015a), particularly Chapter 2 (Vol. I). For the Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra in particular, see Appendix 4 of Stuart (2015a, Vol. II). D. M. Stuart


broader structure and its relationship to various developments in the history of Buddhism in a recently published monograph, A Less Traveled Path (Stuart 2015a).6 The Saddhsu thus draws on early Buddhist canonical sūtra traditions but expands well beyond them, incorporating su ¯tric, a¯bhidharmic, proto-s ´a¯stric, and cosmological material. It does so through a literary structure that brings these diverse aspects of the text into a contained epistemological frame, a frame that allows various historically constructed developments of the Buddhist tradition to sit within a larger system of interconnected phenomena. At the same time, the Saddhsu is, at its core, a text on the stages of meditation. While it contains a wide range of narrative and scholastic material, it is

structured around a description of a yoga practitioner’s (yogācāra) meditative practice of dharmasmṛtyupasthāna. It outlines the various stages of practice (yogācārabhūmi) that a yoga practitioner traverses in order to master such meditative practice.7 While any guesses about the origins of the text must remain speculative, a number of clues point to a provenance in Greater Gandha¯ra in the far northwest of the Indian subcontinent (Lin and Demie ´ville 1949: 42–52).8 If this is the case, then the Saddhsu—though not strictly speaking a śāstra—can be included within an entire genre of proto-s ´a¯stric and s ´a¯stric yogācārabhūmi texts produced primarily in greater Gandha¯ra. These texts later became foundational for the Yoga¯ca¯ravijn ˜a¯nava¯da project.9 The date, location, and genre of the Saddhsu thus give us reason to take it seriously as an important source for the study of the development of Yoga¯ca¯ra


6 For an outline and discussion of the structure and content of the Saddhsu, see Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, Chap. 1). For an analysis of the relationship between the Sūtra on Distinguishing the Six Elements (Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra) and the Saddhsu, see Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, Chap. 2). Many of the arguments I make below are drawn from this chapter. 7 On the tiered narrative structure of the Saddhsu, and how it constructs the role of the yogācāra as a stand-in for the Buddha, see Stuart (2015b). 8 On minor scholastic elements of the Saddhsu that indicate Gandha¯ran origin, see Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, p. 440), where we find the phrases

vindamānārtho vedanārthaḥ and sañjānanārthaḥ sañjñārthaḥ used to define the feeling and perception faculties respectively. Parallel formulations can be found in a number of texts from the northwest of the Indian subcontinent. Most prominently, the Peṭakopadesa employs this formulation repeatedly in defining key terms. See, for example, Pet ˙ 6.60 at Pet ˙ 112–113, where we find the following passage dealing with the aggregates (Be): tattha katamo khandhattho? samūhattho khandhattho, puñjattho khandhattho, rāsattho khandhattho. taṃ yathā dabbakkhandho vanakkhandho dārukkhandho aggikkhandho udakakkhandho vāyukkhandho iti evaṃ khandhesu sabbasaṅgaho va evaṃ khandhattho. See also the Nettipakaraṇa: Nett 15.49 at Nett 79–80. Similar formulations can be found in an unpublished Ga¯ndha¯rı ¯

Saṅgītisūtra commentary presently being worked on by a team of scholars at the University of Washington in Seattle. I am grateful to Stefan Baums for providing me with this information. The fact that a similar formulation in a similar context can be found here in the Saddhsu is evidence for a tentative link between it and these other, less sophisticated exegetical texts from Gandha¯ra. On additional possible Gandha¯ran connections for the Peṭakopadesa, see Zacchetti (2002). On the Gandha¯ran link to the Peṭakopadesa and Nettipakaraṇa, see Baums (2014, pp. 28–34). 9 On the yogācārabhūmi as a textual genre, see Demie ´ville (1954), Yamabe (1999), and Deleanu (2006). These scholars all suggest, to various extents, that early yogācāra materials are somehow foundational for the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da project. On this point, see particularly Yamabe (2013). None of these scholars give significant attention to the Saddhsu, however. Collette Cox additionally suggests the possibility that some aspects of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da scholarship may emerge from early Buddhist exegetical traditions of Gandha¯ra (see Cox 2014).


Yoga¯ca¯ra Substrata?


vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought. Though it is difficult to discern any direct or explicit textual ties between the Saddhsu and the seminal works of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da textual corpus, key practical and scholastic issues in the text echo those of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da project. It is to these that we now turn.


Consciousness, Feelings, and the Manodhātu


WhatmakestheYoga¯ca¯ratheoryofmindremarkableinthehistoryofBuddhismisthe emergence of the storehouse consciousness (ālayavijñāna) and defiled mentality (kliṣṭamanas)—categories that have no explicit traditional referents—as central components of the mental economy of the tradition. But how exactly these categories developed remains somewhat murky. Lambert Schmithausen has argued that the conceptofstorehouseconsciousnessoriginallyemergedbasedonatheoreticalneedto justifyaspecificsūtrapassage,whichstatesthatinthemeditativestateofcessationthe mind has not departed from the body of a practitioner (1987 and 2014).10 Paul Griffiths,ontheotherhand,contendsthattheconceptemergedasan“adhoc”solution to a range of philosophical problems, primarily associated with the issue of continuity in connection with the Buddhist doctrine of impermanence (1986). William Waldron addsmorehistoricalnuancetothelinesofGriffith’sapproach,arguingthattheconcept of the storehouse consciousness was developed out of a need to reclaim certain functions of consciousness in early Buddhist tradition that had been lost in the context of Abhidharma scholasticism (2003). Jowita Kramer has argued along similar lines

thattheconceptofkliṣṭamanasemergedbecausethetraditionalfunctionofmanaswas primarilyan empty category inAbhidharma tradition(2010,2014,and 2016). Eachof these scholars makes a fairly compelling case. However, they all seem to be working undertheassumptionthattheseconceptsemergedprimarilyfromtheoreticalproblems evidenced within the textual traditions. Although this may well be the case, these accounts don’t properly take into consideration the role of meditative practice in the development of such traditions. In fact, Yamabe (2012, 2013, 2015) has recently pushed back against some of these earlier theories, suggesting an experiential locus for the historical emergence of the concept of ālayavijñāna.11 I am sympathetic to Yamabe’s approach, but feel that his arguments might be complemented by broadening the scope of the inquiry. It is in conversation with the above-mentioned erudite treatments of the Yoga¯ca¯ra


10 For the key passage, see Delhey (2009, p. 207). Schmithausen develops this historical argument to suggest that once the category had emerged from this early context, a range of philosophical engagements forced the tradition to justify the category’s presence within its broader system and led to the classical formulation as we see it in developed Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought. 11 As I do not read Japanese, I can only refer to Yamabe (2012) as it has been reported in English language literature. In this regard, I am primarily dependent on Schmithausen (2014). It remains unclear at this point how far Yamabe’s theories can go to help explain the origin of the concept of ālayavijñāna. What is productive about his approach is the renewed emphasis on contemplative practice contexts and meditative experiences inthedevelopmentof Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯dathought.In anarticlein thisvery volumeYamabe

continuestodevelophisextremelyrichengagementwiththeearlyconceptofālayavijñāna.Schmithausen’s nuanced engagement with such issues has inspired many scholars, including myself, to pursue such lines of inquiry.


D. M. Stuart


vijn ˜a¯nava¯da theory of mind that I suggest that passages from the Saddhsu may shed light on the broader practical and theoretical frameworks that gave rise to such a theory. While there is no evidence of anything analogous to the storehouse consciousness in the Saddhsu, the broader description of human experience in the text—embedded in a meditative program—allows us to reflect afresh on the phenomenology of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da tradition in general. In order to highlight such possibilities, I would like to take as my point of departure a passage from one of the more developed scholastic texts of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da corpus, Sthiramati’s commentary on Vasubandhu’s Pañcaskandhaka, the Pañcaskandhakavibhāṣā. I begin here not with any of Sthiramati’s proofs for the existence of ālayavijñāna,12 but instead with his discussion of the feeling (vedanā) aggregate and its relationship with the ālayavijñāna:13 “Feeling is the

result (vipāka) of good and bad karmas, and the [so-called] self experiences it,” therefore, one grasps the feeling aggregate as “mine.” In this respect, pleasant experience is the result of good karmas. Pain[ful experience] is the result of bad karmas. Neither-painful-nor-pleasant [[[experiences]] are the result of] both [types of karmas]. But in the ultimate sense, equanimity alone, which is connected to the storehouse consciousness (ālayavijñāna), is a result of karma, because the storehouse consciousness is the result of good and bad karma. Yet because pain and pleasure are produced from [that] result, they have the semblance (upacāra) of [being a] result. Here Sthiramati describes the epistemological status of the ālayavijñāna. It is (theoretically) experienced or discerned via the

feeling of equanimity, which is itself ultimatelytheresultofgoodandbadactions.Hegoesontomakeanontologicalinference based on this assertion. He comes to the conclusion that experiences of pain and pleasure aresimplycognitivedistortionsarisingfromthepurelyresultantequanimity.Wecanthus conclude—and this is supported by other statements of Sthiramati—that such cognitive distortions would contribute to the generation of new karmic intentions, leading to wholesome or unwholesome results in the future (PSkV 90–91). It is in this oblique engagement with the concept of ālayavijñāna that I find a connection to the Saddhsu and to some of the more elemental issues that seem to be at the root of the need for this form of consciousness. Certain key passages from the Saddhsu will help to demonstrate how the text echoes or reflects such elemental concerns. We begin with the core foundational meditative practices of the Saddhsu, depicted in the second chapter of the text in a progression of ten stages (bhūmi).


12 For an excellent overview of the various “proofs” for the necessity of the ālayavijñāna, and the divergent textual traditions transmitting these proofs, see Kramer (2016). For a recent reinterpretation of these “proofs” and a critical analysis of Paul Griffith’s early (1986) interpretation of them, see Yamabe (2015). 13 śubhāśubhānāṃ karmaṇāṃ vedanā vipākah, tāṃ cātmā saṃvedayata iti vedanāskandha ātmīyagrāhaḥ. tatra śubhānāṃ karmaṇāṃ sukho ’nubhavo vipākaḥ.a śubhānāṃ karmaṇāṃ duḥkhaḥ. ubhayeṣām aduḥkhāsukhaḥ. atra cālayavijñānasamprayuktopekṣaiva paramārthataḥ karmavipākaḥ, śubhāśubhakarmavipākatvād ālayavijñānasya. sukhaduḥkhayos tu vipākajatvād vipākopacāraḥ. (PSkV: 2) A similar passage can be found at PSkV 25–26, though it is largely reconstructed from the Tibetan translation. Yoga¯ca¯ra Substrata? 123 The meditative process depicted in the first four stages of this chapter is an explicit reworking of the canonical *Ṣaḍḍhātuvibhaṅghasūtra.14 Both texts describe a practitioner looking one by one at the five different elements that make up his material body. However, when the Saddhsu comes to treat the last of the six elements, the consciousness element (vijñānadhātu), it evidences a significant doctrinal development: The *S ˙ ad ˙ dha¯tuvibhan ˙gasu ¯tra—Isolating Consciousness rnam par shes pa khyad par can dag cing15nges pa rnam par shes shing yongs su shes so || “athāparaṃ viññāṇaṃ yeva avasissati parisuddhaṃ pariyodātaṃ. 唯有餘識 。 ci zhig rnam par shes zhe na | “tena ca viññāṇena kiṃ vijānāti? 此何等識? bde ba rab tu shes so || sdug bsngal rab tu shes so || yid bde ba rab tu shes so || yid mi bde ba rab tu shes so || btang snyoms rab tu shes so ||16 “‘sukhan’ ti pi vijānāti, ‘dukkhan’ ti pi vijānāti, ‘adukkhamasukhan’ ti pi vijānāti.”17 樂 , 苦識, 喜識, 憂識, 捨識 。18 The remaining consciousness being pure and definitely cognized, is discernable.19 “Then there remains only consciousness, purified and clear. There is only consciousness remaining. What does it cognize? “And what does one cognize with that consciousness? What does it cognize? It discerns pleasure, pain, happiness, sadness, and equanimity. “He cognizespleasure,’ ‘pain,’ and ‘neither-pain-norpleasure.” It cognizes pleasure, pain, happiness, sadness, and equanimity.


14 D 4094, mngon pa, ju 34b6–43a3 and Q 5595, mngon pa'i bstan bcos, tu 38a1–46b5; T. 26, 1:690a19– 692b21; MN 140 at MN III 237–247. See also Stuart (2015a, Vol II, Appendix 4) for a synoptic presentation of these three versions of the text in relation to the Saddhsu. 15 The phrase khyad par can here is possibly a misunderstanding of the verb *avaśiṣyate, or perhaps a mistranslation of the verb *viśiṣyate. The text might also have contained an adjectival form, such as *viśiṣṭa 16 D 4094, mngon pa, ju 38b6–7 and Q 5595, mngon pa'i bstan bcos, tu 42a6–7. 17 MN 140 at MN III 242. 18 T. 26, 1:691b4–5. 19 I remain uncertain about the rendering of this sentence. Its lack of parallelism with the other versions of the text makes me suspect that the translation was made from a corrupt Sanskrit version. D. M. Stuart


The Saddharmasmr

˙ tyupastha¯nasu ¯tra, Chapter Two, Stage Two—Isolating


Consciousness20


〈2.9〉 tatra kataro mano(dhā)tuḥ? mano(dhā)tur dvādaśabhir ā(yatanair saṃyuktaḥ). cakṣurvijñānānubhūtam arthaṃ manovijñānenānubhavati. evaṃ śrotraghrāṇajihvākāyamanovijñānāni manovijñānadhātuprabhavāni manomūlāni … 〈3.2〉 … sa sukham utpadyamānam vijānāti. duḥkham utpadyamānaṃ vijānāti. saumanasyaṃ jānāti. daurmanasyaṃ jānāti. upekṣām vijānāti.


2.9 Now what is the mind-element (manodhātu)? The mind-element is connected with the twelve sense-spheres (āyatana). One experiences the [[[visual]]] object that is experienced by eye-consciousness by way of mindconsciousness (manovijñāna). In this way ear[-consciousness], nose[-consciousness], tongue[-consciousness], body[-consciousness], and mindconsciousness (manovijñāna) have their origin in the mind-consciousness element (manovijñānadhātu), and are rooted in the mind (manas)…21 20 Saddhsu II, §2.9–3.2. See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 336–344). 21 Compare SN 48.42 at SN V 217–218 and MN 43 at MN I 295 (parallel with MA ¯ 211 at T I 791b12– 17): “These five faculties, Brahmin, have different objects, different spheres of experience, and do not experience one another’s object(s) of experience. Which five? [They are:] the eye faculty, the ear faculty, the nose faculty, the tongue faculty, and the body faculty. The mind is the refuge of these five

faculties— [with their] different objects and different spheres of experience—while they are not experiencing one another’s object(s) of experience. Only the mind experiences their sphere(s) of experience.” (“pañc‘ imāni, brāhmaṇa, indriyāni nānāvisayāni nānāgocarāni na aññamaññassa gocaravisayaṃ paccanubhonti. katamāni pañca? cakkhundriyaṃ, sotindriyaṃ, gh ānindriyaṃ, jivhindriyaṃ,k āyindriyaṃ. imesaṃ kho, brāhmaṇa, pañcannaṃ indriyānaṃ nānāvisayānaṃ nānāgocarānaṃ na aññamaññassa gocaravisayaṃ paccanubhontānaṃ mano paṭisaraṇaṃ, mano va nesaṃ gocaravisayaṃ paccanubhotī” ti.) Mahāvibhāṣā: Question: Does the activity of the five consciousnesses beginning with the eye manifest successively without an interval? Answer: The masters of yoga (yuqieshi 瑜伽師:*yogācāra) teach that the activity of the five consciousnesses beginning with the eye does not manifest successively without an interval, because these all arise from mind-consciousness without an interval. The masters of the Abhidharmas ´a¯stras teach that the activity of all the five consciousnesses beginning with the eye is able to arise successively without an interval. Otherwise, it would contravene the [statement on the] faculties and aggregates (see T. 1544, 26:994a9–10), which says: The faculty of pain

[is the cause] for the faculty of pain [by way of] primary, antecedent and dominance [[[condition]]], not [by way of] object [[[condition]]]. (T. 1545, 27:682b2–5:「 問眼等五識展轉無間現在前不 。答諸瑜伽師說 。眼等五識展轉無間不現 在前 。皆從意識無間生故 。阿毘達磨諸論師言 。眼等五識展轉皆得無間而起 。若不爾者違根蘊 說 。如彼說 。苦根與苦根為因 。等無間 。增上 。非所緣 。」) Akbh I.17 (p. 11): If it is stated that “the six consciousnesses are called the aggregate of consciousness,” then what is this mind-element that is other than them? There is not anything that is other [than them]. How is that? The consciousness that immediately precedes those very six [[[forms]] of consciousness] is the mind. (1.17ab) Whichever consciousness has ceased just before, that should be called the mind-element, just as a son becomes the father of another [son], and a fruit becomes the seed of another [fruit]. (nanu ca ṣaḍ vijñānakāyā vijñānaskandha ity uktam | atha ko ’yaṃ punas tebhyo 'nyo manodhātuḥ | na khalu kaścid anyaḥ | kiṃ tarhi | teṣām eva, ṣaṇṇām anantarātītaṃ vijñānaṃ yad dhi tan manaḥ | [17ab] yad yat samanantaraniruddhaṃ vijñānaṃ tan manodhātur ity ucyeta | tadyathā sa eva putro 'nyasya pitā bhavati, tad eva phalam anyasya bījam iti |)



Yoga¯ca¯ra Substrata?



3.2. … He cognizes the arising of pleasure, he cognizes the arising of pain, he knows the arising of joy and sadness, and cognizes equanimity. In this passage, we find an attempt—employing a¯bhidharmic categories—to outline a causal framework for the process of cognition. In this framework, mindconsciousness does most of the work. It functions synchronically as an organizer of sense experience, and diachronically as the antecedent cause for the arising of the other sense consciousnesses.22 In effect, it does what the kliṣṭamanas of the Yoga¯ca¯ra scheme does, while also carrying out the traditional function of the manas of canonical Buddhism. What is doctrinally unique here, however, is the role of the mind-element or manodhātu which, in many traditional Abhidharma contexts, usually gets very little play.23 In both Vaibha¯s ˙ ika and Yoga¯ca¯ra texts, the mindelement is primarily a designation for any of the six

regular forms of sense consciousness when they serve as an antecedent condition for the arising of one of those same six forms. Here, however, the mind-element is posited as an additional element, “connected with the twelve sense-spheres” but distinct from them. Though the passage remains somewhat ambiguous, it is worth pondering whether the mindelement here is being presented as a basic form of mind, a pre-reflective substratum akin to the storehouse consciousness. The canonical *Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra and the Saddhsu both describe a practitioner continuing to practice insight into consciousness and the mind-element respectively, observing feelings as they gradually change from pleasant to painful, and then transform into equanimity. The texts read:


Footnote 21 continued PSkV 118–19: manodhātuḥ punaḥṣ aḍ vijñānavyatirikto na vidyate, kiṃ tarhi ta eva ṣaḍvijñānadhātavo ’nantaraniruddhā manodhātur ity ucyate. nanv evaṃ saptadaśa dh ātavaḥ prāpnuvanti dvādaśav ā, manodhātoḥṣ aṇṇāṃ cā vijñānadhātūnām itaretarāntarbhāvāt. na prāpnuvanti, yasmāt ṣaṣṭhavijñānāśrayaparidīpanārtham aṣṭādaśadhātuvyavasthānam. evam ity anantaroktaprakārapradarśanam … yo vijñānaskandhaḥ sa manaāyatanaṃ cittadhātavaś ca sapta, cakṣurvijñānadhātur yāvan manovijñānadhātur iti. See also T. 1548, 28:526a10–13 (the Śāriputra Abhidharma, cited in Schmithausen (2014, p. 223, fn. 973): 云何意界 ? 意知法念法 。若初心已生今生當生不定 。是名意界 。云何意識界 ? 若識相似 , 不離彼境界 , 及餘相似心已生今生當生不定 。是名意識界 。. 22 This allows for both

diachronic/single-layered as well as synchronic/multi-layered analyses of consciousness, which are mapped in two primary models of mind within Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da tradition. These two models are outlined in Kramer (2010, 2016). Kramer distinguishes between the model found in the Yogācārabhūmi and Viṃśikā and that found in the Viniścayasaṃgrahaṇī, Triṃśikā and Saṃdhinirmocanasūtra. 23 On this point, see Kramer (2010, pp. 111–117, 2014, pp. 313–314, 2016). See also above, fn. 21. I am of the opinion that some of Kramer’s interpretations, which largely follow Schmithausen, are somewhat overdetermined by a slightly reified notion of Abhidharma that does not take into account the continued and pervasive influence of sūtra traditions and sūtra interpretations among a¯bhidharmikas. The Saddhsu is an example of a text in which these traditions stand side by side, and its framework of manas/vijñāna clearly allows for the continued role of manas as a real sense faculty while at the same time engaging it as much more than just that.



The *S ˙ad ˙dha¯tuvibhan ˙gasu ¯tra—Equanimity as a basic factor of purified consciousness

dge slong gang gi phyir tshor ba bzhi po ‘di dag las sems ‘dod chags dang bral zhing grol na | 若比丘不染此三覺, 而解脫者 。

de nas btang snyoms yongs su dag cing yongs su byang ba khyad parcan du ‘gyur ro ||24 “athāparaṃ upekkhā yeva avasissati parisuddhā pariyodātā, mudu ca kammaññā ca pabhassarā ca.”25 彼比丘唯存於捨, 極清淨也 。26

The monk whose mind is detached from four feelings is liberated [from them]. If a monk is not defiled by these three feelings, he is liberated [from them]. Then, equanimity, purified and clear, remains.

“Then only equanimity remains, purified and clear, pliant, workable, and bright.” That monk merely abides in equanimity, which is extremely pure.


The Saddharmasmr ˙tyupastha¯nasu ¯tra, Chapter Two, Stage Four—Equanimity as a basic factor of purified consciousness27 〈4.1.4〉 upekṣakaḥ sa viharati smṛtimān sa ṃprajānakaḥ. im ābhis tisṛbhir vedanābhir28 yadātyantikaṃ cittaṃ viraktaṃ bhavati, atha param upekṣaṇaivāvaśiṣṭā bhavati, supariśuddhā bhavati suparyavadātā. 4.1.4 He dwells equanimous and aware, with constant proper discernment [of impermanence].29 When the mind (citta) is entirely detached from these three feelings, there then remains only equanimous viewing (upekṣaṇā), perfectly purified and perfectly clear.

24 D 4094, mngon pa, ju 39b1 and Q 5595, mngon pa'i bstan bcos, tu 42b7. 25 MN 140 at III 243. 26 T. 26, 1:691c4–6. 27 Saddhsu II, §4.1.4. See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 348–349). 28 The reference to three vedanās here should give us pause. It may indicate that this section of the text was left over from a more archaic version of the canonical sūtra that had only three vedanās as opposed to five, as is indeed the case with the Pa¯li Dhātuvibhaṅgasutta. It could also indicate that the list of five vedanās was simply considered an expansion of the list of three, and that saumanasya and daurmanasya were considered to be implied by, and subsumed under, sukha and duḥkha. 29 Here I understand the term samprajānaka to imply the discernment of impermanence along with its correlarate characteristics, suffering and not-self, though this is not the literal rendering of the term. One might more literally translate this term as “constantly cognizant,” and simply understand cognizance to refer to an awareness of the three characteristics.


While pondering this passage, we might think back to the selection from Sthiramati’s Pañcaskandhakavibhāṣā discussed earlier. There, Sthiramati explains how equanimity alone is connected with the storehouse consciousness (atra cālayavijñānasamprayuktā upekṣaiva paramārthataḥ karmavipākaḥ). We thus see here, in a passage describing the practice of insight meditation, a state of mind in which a meditation practitioner discerns what is, in Sthiramati’s reckoning, the experiential referent of the ālayavijñāna. It is likewise worth noting that this state of mind corresponds to the mental stratum associated with the fourth dhyāna or meditative absorption. This state of meditation, let us remember, is the stratum par excellence for liberating discernment, foundational for the

attainment of insentience, and phenomenologically equivalent with the feeling-state of the formless realms.30 Thus, a section of the Saddhsu devoted to the discernment of the mind-element, while largely paralleling the canonical Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra, also displays a clear phenomenological resonance with later Yoga¯ca¯ra s ´a¯stric understandings of the ālayavijñāna. Yet it differs from the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da treatises in its recourse to traditional su ¯tric and a¯bhidharmic frames of reference that do not participate in the pramāṇa-oriented approaches characteristic of much of classical Yoga¯ca¯ravijn ˜a¯nava¯da discourse.


Sense Experience and Phenomenal Consciousness: Seals and Impressions


Again, we cannot emphasize enough that the Saddhsu develops its theory of mind and sense experience in the context of a meditation practice—specifically, traditional smṛtyupasthāna practice. It does not present a mere theory of mind,

30 It is here worth invoking the traditional su ¯tric model of dhyāna practice, with ethical cultivation as a basis, and I would cite two passages from the Saṅghabhedavastu that underline the role of the elemental aspect of mind/consciousness in the the development of śīla and samādhi respectively. While this reference may seem old hat, these passages remain telling with respect to the experiential aspects of mind/consciousness, which often get lost track of in s ´a¯stric contexts but remain central in the Saddhsu: so ’nena āryeṇa śīlaskandhena samanvāgataḥ adhyātmam anavadyasukhaṃ prativedayate. sa indriyair guptadvāro bhavati, nipakasmṛtir guptasmṛtimānasaḥ sahāvasthāvacārakaḥ. sa cakṣuṣor ūpāṇidṛṣṭvā, na nimittagrāhī bhavati, nānuvyañjanagrāhī. yato ’dhikaraṇam eva

cakṣurindriyeṇa asaṃvarasaṃvṛtasya viharato ’bhidhyādaurmanasye loke pāpakā akuśalā dharmāś cittam anusravanti, teṣāṃ saṃvarāya pratipadyate. rakṣati cakṣurindriyaṃ. cakṣurindriyeṇa sa ṃvaram āpadyate. śrotrendriyeṇa śabdān, ghrāṇendriyeṇa gandhān, jihvayā rasān, kāyena spraṣṭavyāni, manasā dharmān vijñāya, na nimittagrāhī, nānuvyañjanagrāhī. yato ’dhikaraṇam eva manaindriyāsaṃvara-saṃvṛtasya viharato ’bhidhyādaurmanasye loke pāpakā akuśalā dharmāś cittam anusravanti, teṣāṃ saṃvarāya pratipadyate. rakṣati manaindriyaṃ. manaindriyeṇa saṃvaraṃ pratipadyate. (Sbhv 240)

yasminsamayeāryaśrā‹vakaḥsukhasyacaprahāṇādduḥkhasyacaprahāṇātpūrvamevacasaumanasyadaurmanasyayor aṣṭaṃgamād aduḥkham asukham upekṣāsmṛtipariśuddhaṃ caturthaṃ dhyānam upasaṃpadya viharati, tasya cittaṃ ta›smin samaye naivonnataṃ bhavati nāvanatam anabhinataṃ sthitam āniñjyaprāptam. tasyaivaṃ bhavati: “‹ayaṃ mama kāyo rūpī o›dārika‹ś cāturmahābhūtikaḥ. vi›jñānām atra pratiṣṭhitam atra paryāpannam. yan nv aham asmātk āyād mānasaṃ vyutthāpyānyaṃ kāyam abhinirmāyāṃ rūpiṇaṃ manomayam avikalam ahīnendriyam.” sa tasmātk ā‹yānm ānasaṃ vyutthāpyānyaṃ kāyam abhinirmimīte rūpiṇaṃ manomayam a›vikalam ahīnendriyam. (Sbhv 245) In connection with the central phrase vijñānām atra pratiṣṭhitam atra paryāpannam of this standard su ¯tric description of the mental possibilities of the fourth dhyāna, see Vasubandhu’s definition of the qualities of the ālayavijñāna in his Pañcaskandhaka: ālayavijñānatvaṃ punaḥ sarvabījālayatām ātmabhāvālayanimittatāṃ kāyālīnatāṃ copādāya. (PSk 17).


but a series of practical approaches to discerning the mind that develop experientially. The text describes how a meditation practitioner discerns ever subtler levels of feeling (vedanā) through each and every sense-sphere,31 comes to understand the workings of perception (saṃjñā),32 and develops the ability to discern various additional dharmas and their relationships primarily under the category of intention (cetanā).33 In discerning dharmas in this way, the meditation practitioner of the Saddhsu comes to certain realizations about the mentally constructed nature of experienced phenomena. This is particularly apparent in a series of meditations in which a monk turns his discernment to the material sensespheres (āyatana). Just as he observes the mind to be made up of a number of

constituent mental factors, he also sees the eye as made up of sinews and fibers, and as ultimately insubstantial. This realization allows him to again discern—in a familiar refrain of the text—the truth of the eye: that it is not self and a source of suffering. Here, however, our text takes an additional step:34 The Saddharmasmr ˙ tyupastha¯nasu ¯tra, Chapter Two, Stage five (2)—The ‘material’sense spheres as mere cogitation (san ˙kalpama¯tra) 〈5.2.3.4〉 sa

cakṣuḥsaṃsparśajavedanāsañjñācetanātattvajñaś cakṣur eva riktakaṃ paśyati, tucchakaṃ paśyati, asārakaṃ paśyati. sadbhūtadarśī bhikṣur mārgatattvajño mithyādṛṣṭivirahitaḥ samyagdṛṣṭipuraḥsaras tad eva cakṣuḥsahagataṃ moham āvilīsvabhāvabhūtaṃ prajahāti. māṃsapiṇḍatattvadarśī “medapūyarudhirāśrunilayam” iti matvā,r āgaṃ prajahāti. “na nityam” iti matvānityadarśī bhavati. “māṃsapiṇḍam” iti matvā, “asthicchidragataṃ” virajyate. “snāyubandhanam” iti matvā, “parasparāyattam idaṃ cakṣurāyatanam” avagacchati. “neha sāram asti,” nirātmakam avaiti. sa “saṅkṣepato duḥkhabhūtam idaṃ cakṣuḥ,” iti vijānan paśyan, cakṣurāyatanād virajyate. 〈5.2.3.5〉 sa cakṣurāyatanaṃ yathāvad avagacchan, rūpam api vicārayati: “sacet tad rūpaṃ priyāpriyāvyākṛtam abhūtaṃ parikalpyate, kim atra sāram asti? kiṃ śuciṃ kiṃ nityaṃ kiṃ sukham asti?” sa rūpaṃ paśyañ jānan vimṛśaṃ labhate: “neha rūpaṃ sāram asti. saṅkalpamātrakam evedaṃ rūpaṃ priyāpriyam. neha priyo vāpriyo vā bhāvo ’sti. kevalam ayaṃ lokaḥ prītikrodhasaṅkalpagṛhītaḥ ‘priyaṃ dveṣyam’ iti vā manyate.”


5.2.3.4 [In this way, that monk, who] knows the reality of feeling, perception and intention produced through contact with the eye, sees the eye as empty, hollow, and insubstantial. The monk, seer of actuality, knower of the reality of the path, being free from wrong view and guided by right view, abandons eyeassociated delusion, which has the nature of corruption (āvilīsvabhāvabhūta). Being a seer of the reality of the [[[eye]] as a] ball of flesh, he thinks: “[This eye] is a receptacle for grease, pus, blood and tears,” and abandons desire [for it]. Thinking: “[This is] not permanent,” he becomes one who sees [[[phenomena]]] 31 Saddhsu II, §3.1–§4.2.33. See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 342–402). 32 Saddhsu II, §5.1–§5.1.24. See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 402–437). 33 Cetanā stands in the Saddhsu for the saṃskāraskandha or the aggregate of mental constructions (Saddhsu II, §5.1.20–§5.2.12.25). See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 424–466). 34 Saddhsu II, §5.2.3.4–5. See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 444–445).


as impermanent. Thinking: “[This is just] a ball of flesh on [a framework of] bones and orifices,” he becomes dispassionate [towards the eye]. Thinking: “[This is only] a network of muscular fibers,” he understands (avagacchati): “This eye sphere is mutually interdependent [with that].” He understands (avaiti) that it is without a self: “There is no[thing of] substance here.” Cognizing and seeing that “In brief, this eye is suffering,” he becomes dispassionate towards the eye-sphere. 5.2.3.5 Understanding the eye-sphere as it is, he additionally explores (vicārayati) the visible form: “If this visible form—be it desirable, undesirable or neutral—is unreal, imagined (parikalpyate), how can there be [anything of] substance here? How can it be pure, permanent, or [ultimately] pleasurable (sukha)?” Seeing, knowing and investigating [that] visible form, he attains [it]: “[This] visible form here has no substance. This visible form—be it desirable or undesirable—is mere cogitation (saṅkalpamātrakam eva). There is no thing here that actually exists as desirable or undesirable. This entire world is encompassed by cogitation [connected with] rapture and anger (prītikrodhasaṅkalpagṛhīta), thinking: ‘[This is] desirable, [this is] odious.’”


In this deconstruction of the visual sense-object, a meditator comes to see that it is, in fact, nothing more than a mental fabrication (saṅkalpamātrakam evedaṃ rūpaṃ). This realization represents a fundamental shift in the practitioner’s understanding of the world. The mind is a shifting mass of momentary dharmas, the eye is an insubstantial mass of flesh, and sense-objects are the fictitious production of desire and hatred. What was once external becomes an almost entirely internal affair (even though the category distinctions of ‘internal’ and ‘external’ nonetheless continue to be applied).35 Similar, though varied, descriptions present the practitioner discerning all of the material sense-spheres (āyatana)—the ear, the nose, the tongue, the body, and their respective sense objects—in the same way. This understanding of the phenomenal world has strong implications for some of the dominant debates in later Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da exegetical discourse about the ontological status of the external world.36 These descriptions may also remind the reader of a key passage from the Śrāvakabhūmi—pointed out originally by Schmithausen—which describes the production of mentally constructed “counterfeit” sense-objects (pratirūpālambana) in deeply concentrated states of meditation.37 According to Schmithausen’s narrative of the development of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought, a philosophical generalization developed from the meditative possibility of counterfeit senseobjects and led to an idealistic ontology. In the Saddhsu—a text roughly contemporaneous with or possibly even predating the Śrāvakabhūmi—the


35 It remains a question whether the categories “internal” and “external” are still appropriate once such a realization has taken place. According to the Saddhsu, they are, as such categories continue to be applied. 36 On this issue in the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da commentarial literature preserved in Chinese translation, see Schmithausen (2005) and Lusthaus (2002). 37 S ´rbh Je II 52–54. See Schmithausen (1976, pp. 239–240) and Deleanu (2006, p. 255). See also my discussion of this passage in Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 279–288). For a related development within the Therava¯da tradition, connected with the meditative object of respiration, see Pat ˙ is I 185–186.


generalization is largely complete in the context of a regime of insight meditation, although not necessarily with respect to ontology.38 But the Saddhsu takes up this philosophical question in a unique way: it appears to question the very nature of the traditional categories of the Su ¯tra and Abhidharma traditions central to its program, while at the same time upholding them. In this way, an elemental mind-matter problematic emerges in the text but finds resolution in a somewhat ambiguous way. The resolution is enacted in a description of a practitioner going on to discern the sphere of dharma(s) (dharmāyatana).39 The traditional Sarva¯stiva¯da understanding of the sphere of dharma(s) is that it comprises all mental factors excluding consciousness, the three unconditioned dharmas, and unmanifest materiality (avijñaptirūpa).40 Here in the Saddhsu— although the text is somewhat elliptical and difficult to interpret—we find a treatment of the dharmāyatana with several somewhat puzzling differences. First, the text makes no explicit reference to unmanifest materiality. More puzzling than this absence, however, is what seems to be the assertion that the entire world of materiality comes to be subsumed within the dharmāyatana. This idea is implicit in the following extensive passage:41



The Saddharmasmr ˙tyupastha¯nasu ¯tra, Chapter Two, Stage five—The dharma¯yatana, mentality and materiality, seals and impressions 〈5.2.8.1〉 punar api sa yogācāra ādhyātmike dharme dharmānupaśyī viharati: kathaṃ sa bhikṣur daśar ūpīṇy āyatanāni avalokya, dharmāyatanatattvadarśī dharmāyatanam avalokayati? sa paśyati śrutamayena jñānena divyena vā cakṣuṣā: 〈5.2.8.2〉 “dharmāyatanasaṅgṛhītās trayo dharmāḥ: pratisaṅkhyāyanirodho ’pratisaṅkhyāyanirodha ākāśaṃ ca. tatra dharmo yat kiñcid avidyamānam, tad dharmasaṅgṛhītaṃ kṛtvā, ākāśāyatanaṃ bhavati. pratisaṅkhyānirodho nirvāṇam. pratisaṅkhyā nāma prajñām anekavidhāṃ sākṣīkṛtvā, viharati. pratisaṅkhyānaṃ kṛtvā, kleśān vidhamati kṣapayati nāśayati, paryāvṛṇīkurute sarvān āsravān. apratisaṅkhyānirodhaḥ: apratisaṅkhyā nāma yad ajñānaṃ


38 I am grateful to Professor Schmithausen for sharing with me, in a private correspondence, some useful critical thoughts on some of the interpretations presented here. I take seriously his suggestion that I may be pushing some of my interpretations too far when I argue that the Saddhsu’s philosophical program moves in the direction of a true ontological idealism. In line with his own well-known arguments, Schmithausen argues that a further philosophical extrapolation is necessary beyond the practice-based gestures discussed here. I agree with him that none of the material I present here is doctrinally unambiguous in this regard. 39 It is noteworthy that our text makes no reference to the sphere of the mind (manaāyatana). It seems likely that this is a deliberate omission, as

discernment of mind (citta) becomes the central topic of discernment later on in the text, in the seventh stage of practice. 40 See the definition of the sphere of dharma(s) in the Mahāvibhāṣā(CBETA, T27, no. 1545: 65a29–b02): 「法處有七種。謂前四蘊及三無為。於色蘊中取無表色。三無為者。謂虛空擇滅。非擇滅。」 This conforms with Akbh I.15 (p. 11): ete punas trayaḥ vedanāsaṃjñāsaṃskāraskandhāḥ āyatanadhātuvyavasthāyāṃ dharmāyatanadhātvākhyāḥ sahāvijñaptyasaṃskṛtaiḥ ||15|| ity etāni sapta dravyāṇi dharmāyatanaṃ dharmadhātuś cety ākhyāyante |. 41 Saddhsu II §5.2.8.1–5.2.10 (Ms 21b5–7). See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 452–457).


yan na j ānāti na samprativedayati na jānīte na saṃbudhyate na pratarkayate. paramparavijñānaśatasahasrāṇyutpannāninaśyanti,cakṣuḥśrotraghrāṇajihvākāyamanovijñānāni.teṣāṃdhvastānāṃnapunarutpādaḥ,e ṣaapratisaṅkhyāyanirodhaḥ. tṛtīyamākāśam.etetrayodharmāajātānityā.adhvanāpyetenajātānajaniṣyantena jāyante.” 〈5.2.9〉 punar api sa bhikṣuḥ kathaṃ dharmāyatanaṃ dvividhaṃ vibhajati, rūpaṃ cārūpaṃ ca? 〈5.2.10〉 “tatra rūpijagad daśar ūpīṇy āyatanāni.42 tatra katham anidarśanāpratighena cakṣurvijñānena sapratighaṃ sanidarśanaṃ rūpam upalabhyate? evaṃ śrotravijñānenānidarśanāpratighena kathaṃ śabdo gṛhyate? evaṃ ghrāṇavijñānenānidarśanenāpratighena kathaṃ gandho gṛhyate? evaṃ

jihvāvijñānenāpratighenānidarśanena kathaṃ raso gṛhyate? evaṃ kāyavijñānen ānidarśanenāpratighena kathaṃ spraṣṭavyo gṛhyate? evaṃ etāni bāhyāni pañcāyatanāni adhyātmikāni pañcāyatanāni. katham anidarśanāpratighānāṃ sanidarśanasapratighānāṃ cāyatanānāṃ upalabdhir bhavati?” 〈5.2.11.1〉 sa paśyati bhikṣuḥ: “yāvad vividham ālambanaṃ bhavati, tāvad vividham eva vijñānam utpadyate, mudrāpratimudrakavat. tatra visadṛśā mudrāyasy akaṭhinaṃ mudrakam. mṛdu sātaptakaṭhinam.

kaṭhinākaṭhinayoḥ pratimudrā utpadyate.43 evam evānidarśanāpratighaṃ vijñānaṃ sanidarśanapratigham ālambanaṃ gṛhṇīte. tṛtīyaṃ pratimudrakam utpadyate. visadṛśānāṃ sarveṣāṃ visadṛśam upalabhyate. evaṃ visadṛśe visadṛśam utpadyate. prathamā koṭiḥ. 〈5.2.11.2〉 “dvitīyā koṭiḥ: sadṛśaiḥ sadṛśam utpadyate. tadyathā: śuklais tantubhiḥ śuklaṃ vastraṃ paṭasañjñakam. 〈5.2.11.3〉 “tṛtīyā koṭiḥ: vidhurād vidhuram utpadyate. tadyathāraṇibhyo vahniḥ,k āṣṭhāgnyor virodho dṛṣṭaḥ. 〈5.2.11.4〉 “caturthī koṭiḥ: acchād ghanaṃ jāyate. yathā kṣīrād acchād ghanaṃ dadhi, tadevam asadṛśair api bhāvaiś cakṣurvijñānādibhir hetupratyayaviśeṣaiś cakṣurvijñānādaya utpadyante.”


5.2.8.1 And further, the yoga practitioner dwells observing dharma-s among internal dharma[-s]: How does that monk, having scrutinized the ten material sense-spheres, being a seer of the reality of the sphere of dharma(-s), scrutinize the sphere of dharma(-s)? He sees with knowledge produced through hearing, or with the divine eye: 5.2.8.2 “Threedharma-s are subsumed (˚saṃgṛhīta) by the sphere ofdharma(-s): [1.] cessation through observation (pratisaṃkhyāyanirodha), [2.] cessation through absence of observation (apratisaṃkhyāyanirodha), and [3.] space. In thisrespect,thatdharmawhichdoesnotexistatall,being[nonetheless]takenasa dharma, becomes the sphere of space. Cessation through observation is nirvāṇa.


42 tatra rūpijagad daśar ūpīṇy āyatanāni ] em.; tatra rūpijagad arūpiṇy āyatanāni Ms; de la gzugs can bcu ni skye mched gzugs can yin no || Bcrit; 所言色者, 謂十色入 。T. 43 Cf. S ´iks ˙ 239 and Prap 108: mudrāt pratimudra dṛśyate mudrasaṃkrānti na copalabhyate | na ca tatra na caiva sānyato evaṃ saṃskāra ’nucchedaśāśvatāḥ ||


Observationmeansthatonedwellsrealizingdiscernmentofvarioussorts.Having observed [with discernment] (pratisaṃkhyānaṃ kṛtvā), one dispels, obliterates, and destroys the mental defilements, and eradicates (paryāvṛṇīkurute) all the fluxes. Cessation through absence of observation: absence of observation is unknowing (ajñāna), that by which one does not know (jānāti), does not experience (saṃprativedayati), does not cognize (jānīte), does not understand (saṃbudhyate), and does not reflect upon (pratarkayate). Successive hundreds of thousands of cognitions that have arisen—consciousness of the eye, ear, nose, tongue, body and mind—disappear. Once they have perished, there is no further arising. This is cessation through absence of observation. The third [[[dharma]]] is space.Thesethreedharma-sareunbornandpermanent.Theyarenotborn,willnot be born, and are not being born.” 5.2.9 How does that monk then discriminate between the two-fold dharmasphere, the material and the immaterial? 5.2.10 “In this respect, the ten material spheres are the world of materiality. And how is it that a visible form, which is tangible

and visible, can be appropriated (upalabhyate) by eye-consciousness, which is invisible and intangible? Similarly, how can a sound be grasped by an invisible and intangible ear-consciousness? Similarly, how can a scent be grasped by an invisible and intangible nose-consciousness? Similarly, how can a taste be grasped by an intangible and invisible tongue-consciousness? Similarly, how can a touch be grasped by an invisible and intangible body-consciousness? These are the five external sense-spheres and the five internal sense-spheres. How is there the engagement (upalabdhi) of sense spheres, which are [both] visible and tangible and
invisible and intangible?” 5.2.11.1 That monk sees: “To the extent that there are various objects, various consciousnesses arise, like a seal and its impression. In this respect, there is a distinct iron seal and soft material to be imprinted. The soft [material] becomes hard when heated. From [the contact of] hard and soft, an impression appears.44 Similarly, an invisible and intangible consciousness grasps a visible and tangible object (ālambana), and a third [[[element]]], an impression, appears. A thing is appropriated by all things dissimilar [to it]. In this way, a dissimilar thing appears within a dissimilar thing. 

[This is] the first possibility (koṭi). 5.2.11.2 “The second possibility: Something appears (utpadyate) due to things that are similar [to it]. For example: A white cloth, known as a paṭa, [comes about] through the use of white threads. 5.2.11.3 “The third possibility: A distinct thing appears because of [another] distinct thing. For example: Fire appears from two fire-sticks, [even though] wood and fire are known to be distinct. 5.2.11.4 “The fourth possibility: Something opaque is produced from something pellucid. Just as opaque curd [is produced] from pellucid milk, so also sense-consciousnesses (cakṣurvijñānādi) appear from [already]


44 This simile is difficult to understand as it stands in Ms, and I have made several alterations to the text in order to arrive at the present reading. See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 454–457).


existent but dissimilar sense-consciousnesses, due to specific causes and conditions.” In this passage, the sphere of dharma(s) is defined straightforwardly as the three unconditioned dharmas. This suggests that the Saddhsu is not an orthodox Sarva¯stiva¯da text, though much of the material found in it should be classified as some species of Sarva¯stiva¯da.45 For example, the text’s suggestion that the unconditioned dharma of space does not exist at all (yat kiñcid avidyamānaṃ), yet can nonetheless be taken up and discussed as a dharma, indicates a position that mediates between Sarva¯stiva¯da and Sautra¯ntika disagreements about the status of space.46 The more interesting aspect of this passage for our present purposes, however, emerges at the very end, when a query is raised about the


twofold nature of the sphere of dharma(s). How does one distinguish between the immaterial and material aspects of the sphere of dharma(s)? In its very brief answer, we find an unorthodox position: The ten material sense-spheres comprise the material aspect of the sphere of dharma(s). In itself, such a position is radical.47 When we consider the content of the preceding meditative realizations, the implications of this position become even more extreme. That is, we have already seen our monk deconstruct the material existence of sense-objects; but with this additional development, the entire world of materiality, it seems, comes to be understood and experienced as an immaterial mental formation.48 This realization would seem to present something of a solution to a question, raised later on in the text, about how immaterial states come about


45 A wide range of Buddhist philosophical schools drew on the common heritage of Sarva¯stiva¯da Abhidharma thought. This is, in fact, the only way I think the designation “Sarva¯stiva¯da” should be understood and used, as it is quite clear that even among those who explicitly declared their adherence to the Sarva¯stiva¯da there were a great deal of differences. The term Sarva¯stiva¯da thus encompasses a massive conglomeration of traditions, groups, schools, and practices. On this issue, see Cox (1995, pp. 24–29). See also Willemen et al. (1997, pp. 36–137) (particularly 93–123). 46 On these distinctions, see Bareau

(1955, p. 157). 47 The traditional position is clearly elucidated in the Śrāvakabhūmi (S ´rbh Je I 236): “We call materiality the ten material sense spheres and that materiality which is subsumed within the sphere of dharma(s).” (rūpam ucyate daśar ūpīṇy āyatanāni yac ca dharmāyatanaparyāpannaṃ rūpam sa ca rūpaskandhaḥ.) The position presented in the Abhidharmakośabhāṣya allows us to see the way in which most orthodox Sarva¯stiva¯dins probably conceived of this form of materiality (Akbh 198): “Whatever materiality here is described as invisible and intangible, that should be subsumed within the sphere of dharma(s).” (tad yad evātra rūpam anidarśanam apratighaṃ coktaṃ tad evāstu dharmāyatanaparyāpannam.); (Akbh 196): “Except for unmanifest materiality, no materiality is invisible and intangible, nor is it free of fluxes.” (na cāvijñaptiṃ virahayyāsti rūpam anidarśanam apratighaṃ nāpy ‹an›āsravam.) The position that the Saddhsu appears to

advocate is recorded as the view of “other masters” and is subsequently refuted in the Mahāvibhāṣā: “There are some masters who say: ‘The *dharmadhātu entirely subsumes all dharmas.’”「有餘師說 : 法界總攝一切法盡 。」(T. XXVII 370c19–20); “Some say: ‘The *dharmāyatana subsumes all dharmas.’”「或說 : 法處攝一切法 。」(T. XXVII 985b6–8). On these passages see Dhammajoti (2007, pp. 37–43). Dhammajoti connects these passages with the “Sautra¯ntika” master S ´rı¯la¯ta. 48 Another way to interpret what is happening in the text here is to read the reference to the material sense spheres as a reaffirmation of the existence of materiality. That is, after seeing through mentally fabricated sense objects, which are merely the products of mental defilement, one gains an ability to discern the actually existent material world, which is subsumed within the sphere of dharma(s), and comes to be illuminated in connection with the unconditioned dharmas.


based on material objects: if the entire world of materiality is in fact simply a mental construct, then the putative interaction between such distinct phenomena comes to naught. Yet, in the Saddhsu, our meditator monk does not take these implications of his realization to their final conclusion. The text defers the construction of an ontological hard line, preferring instead to uphold the traditional categories while also allowing for their dismantlement. This middle path between the philosophical modes of dualism, idealism, and relativism is best elucidated in the final series of simile-based cognitions, presented in the catuṣkoṭi (§5.2.11.1–4), following the initial question about the problem of how mind and matter can interact (§5.2.10). The first position, in particular, is interesting: a practitioner understands how object conditions—referred to previously as mentally constructed—determine how various forms of invisible and intangible

consciousnesses arise based on various visible and tangible objects. The simile of a seal and its impression (mudrāpratimudrā) explicitly suggests an emergentist model of consciousness, as do the other positions, though more obliquely.49 Yet the traditional notion of consciousness as a fundamental elemental aspect of reality remains. This position in particular, and these passages in general, reveal the fundamental role of simile and metaphor in the Saddhsu’s meditative program. By recourse to comparisons and figurative language, a practitioner maintains the traditional distinctions between material and immaterial categories, while allowing that such distinctions are ever metaphorical, built up from concepts which themselves are structured around metaphors.50 This realization first

emerges in the first round of the fifth stage, when a meditator observes how very basic perceptual aspects of materiality have emergent conceptual properties. Here, the earlier observations find fullness in these meta-cognitive similes, which allow the deconstructive realizations of our monk to stand comfortably within a constructivist framework of mental states, sense doors and objects, and the mind/consciousness-element. By marshaling this series of simile-based positions, the text elegantly defers the problem without ultimately solving it. Its emphasis on continued meditation, and on continued exploration of ever subtler mental processes, may have allowed for such philosophical problems to remain moot, though they were repeatedly raised. The metaphors presented in the text allow for provisional answers that encourage a meditator to continue his inquiry, one that eventually reveals a more definitive analysis of such questions. For instance, the painter metaphor presented below, which describes the entire world of saṃsāra as the production of the mind (citta) of a meditation practitioner, largely does away with the problem presented here in the fifth stage.


49 I will return to the seal and impression simile in a discussion of the Saddhsu’s treatment of bhavāṅga consciousness in the Section "Sense Experience and Phenomenal Consciousness: Seals and Impressions". 50 For an insightful analysis of the relationship between metaphor, language and the construction of human experience, see Lakoff and Johnson (1999). Many of the early Buddhist philosophical traditions, particularly the so-called Sautra¯ntikas—several views attributed to whom we find embedded in the Saddhsu—seem to have understood the implicit connection between the world of metaphor and the basic perceptual and cognitive structures of mental life. For an insightful philosophical take on the role of metaphor in negotiating understandings of reality, see Blumenberg (1997 [1979]).


The problematic of the interaction between mind and matter, then, was ripe within old yogācāra communities such as those that transmitted the Saddhsu and early yogācārabhūmis. It is this issue that eventually calls for a vijñānavāda solution. It is also to this problematic that later Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da traditions, perhaps more concerned with scholastic solutions than with practice, addressed themselves.51 One more series of metaphor-based meditative cognitions, found in its description of the seventh stage of meditative practice, helps us to discern the Saddhsu’s implicit theory of mind. At this point in the text, a practitioner comes to observe the mind or citta in its role as the generative force of the world of saṃsāra:52


The Saddharmasmr ˙tyupastha¯nasu ¯tra, Chapter Two, Stage Seven—The painter mind 〈7.12.7〉 punar api sa bhikṣur yogam āsthitaḥ: “tad eva traidhātukaṃ pañcagatikapañcaraṅgaṃ saṃsāra-citrapaṭaṃ tribhūmyavasthaṃ—kāmadhātubhūmikaṃ rūpadhātukam ārūpyadhātukam. tatra sa cittacitrakarmakaraḥ kāmasevanayā kāmadhātvālambanāni nanavidhāni rūpāṇi ālikhate. viṃśatividhāni rūpadhātvālambanāśritāni kāmavisaṃyuktāni caturdhyānakūrcena tadāśritāni ṣoḍaśabhūmyavasthitāni rūpadhātāv abhilikhati. rūpadhātvālambanavisaṃyuktāni samāpatticatuṣkādisamālambanāny ārūpyadhātāv abhilikhati cittacitrakarmakaraḥ. āyato hy ayaṃ traidhātukapaṭaḥ.” 〈7.13〉 punar api sa bhikṣuś cittacitrakaraṃ paśyati sattvān ālikhamānam anyena prakāreṇa: “tatra citrakarasadṛśaṃ cittacitrakaram. raṅgabhājanasadṛśaṃ śarīram. dṛḍhakasadṛśāni rāgadveṣamohāni. sopānasadṛśam ālambanam. kūrcasadṛśānīndriyāṇi. raṅgasadṛśā bāhyaviṣayāḥ śabdasparśarasarūpagandhāḥ. bhittisadṛśaḥ saṃsāraḥ. ālokasadṛśaṃ jñānam. hastasadṛśov īryārambhaḥ. citrarūpasadṛśāni rūpāni

anekaveṣarūpavastravṛddhijātāny anekakarmaphalavipākakṛtāni.” 7.12.7 Further, that monk is [thus] established in the practice of yoga: “This very painting of the flow [of existence] has three realms, five destinations in five pigments, and states of existence on three levels (tribhūmyavastha): [1.] the level of the sphere of sensuality, [2. the level of] the sphere of subtle materiality, and [3. the level of] the sphere of immateriality. On that [painting], the actions of the mind, like a painter, by engaging in sensuality, paint various images [based on] objects [of consciousness] of the sphere of sensuality. With the brush of the four meditations in the sphere of subtle


51 It is interesting to note that this problem has yet to be solved, even with the powerful tools available to modern philosophers, scientists, and scholars. The wealth of recent studies—from various fields— attempting to deal with this issue displays the intractability of the mind-body question. For examples of sophisticated yet troubled discussions of it, in a variety of different fields, see Dennett (1991), Lakoff and Johnson (1999), Koch (2004), Siegel (2007), Taves (2009), Noe ¨ (2009), Kripal (2010), Humphrey (2011), Bronkhorst (2012), Nagel (2012), Hutto and Myin (2013), and Blum (2012, 2014). To date, I find the most convincing and engaging approach to this issue to be that of Metzinger (2003), and the recent work of Hutto and Myin (2013) is an excellent complement to Metzinger’s rich engagement with functionalist and representationalist approaches. Nagel’s weighty speculations add a dose of universal perspective to these accounts. 52 Saddhsu II §7.12.7–7.13 (Ms 23a7–24b2). See Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 490–493).


materiality, [it] paints twenty types of [images], which are based on objects [of consciousness] of the subtle material sphere, and which are separate from sensuality. [These images appear in] sixteen states of existence that have these [[[meditations]]] as a support (tadāśrita). The action of the mind, like a painter, [also] paints [images] in the sphere of immateriality. They are separated from the objects of the sphere of subtle materiality, and have as basis the four [[[Wikipedia:immaterial|immaterial]]] attainments. [In this way,] this painting of the three realms is extensive.” 7.13 Further, that monk, using another method, sees the painter-mind as it paints beings: “Here, the painter-mind is similar to a painter. The body is similar to pigment vessels. Desire, aversion and delusion are similar to a base coat (dṛḍhakasadṛśa). An object [of consciousness] is similar to a ladder [on which a painter stands]. The sense-faculties are like paint brushes. The external

sense-objects—sounds, touches, tastes, visible forms and scents—are similar to pigments. The flow [of existence] is similar to a wall [on which a painter paints]. Knowledge is similar to light [that illuminates a painting]. The application of effort is similar to [a painter’s] hands. The bodies [of beings], like the images in a painting, are born in a multitude of appearances, shapes, attires and fortunes, and are created as the ripening of the fruit of various actions.”


This passage is a reworking of a traditional canonical simile found in the Samyuktāgama, in which the mind of an ignorant worldling is compared to a master painter, who paints images in conformity with his mind.53 In the Saddhsu, however, the simile is transvalued in a series of extended metaphors, which represent the mind of a meditation practitioner at a fairly advanced stage of practice. In these figurations, we can discern an expansion of the meta-cognitive outlook presented in the catuṣkoṭi similes of the fifth stage of practice. This more expansive outlook provides conceptual space for some of the modes of defining

consciousness presented in the previous stages of practice. In this comprehensive metaphor, informed by the previous stages of discerning the mind—and its connection with feelings, sense experience, and dharmas—an implicit theory of mind emerges. A meditation practitioner first discerns fundamental mental strata. He then comes to see how the entire world, a world of mental content that makes up his reality, emerges from those fundamental structures. Finally, he returns to the fundamental aspect of mind but in a way that acknowledges and allows for the entire range of mental life—from the elemental and pre-symbolic to the phenomenal—to manifest in a spectrum of mundane as well as supramundane experiences.54


53 SA ¯ 267 (with a Pa¯li parallel in SN 22.100 at SN III 152). For a discussion of the painter-mind passages of the Saddhsu in connection with the development of the relationship between visual and contemplative practice cultures, see Stuart (forthcoming [2018]). For a treatment of how a similar painter simile in the Avataṃsakasūtra became a central intrerpretive node for the later Huayan School in East Asia interested in showing that Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought was foundational to their system, see Hamar (2014). 54 The soteriology of the Saddhsu is a complex topic that cannot be dealt with here. The relationship of the practices represented in the text to the suprumundane path is ambiguous. In any case, it is clear that the ultimate aim of the text involves complete mastery of the mundane sphere while at the same time an ability to approach the supramundane at will.


Let us here recall the passage from Sthiramati’s Pañcaskandhakavibhāṣā with which the previous section began. There the ālayavijñāna was invoked in connection with the feeling aggregate, and it was understood that karmic ripening manifests ontologically as equanimity but comes to be experienced phenomenologically as the semblance of pleasure and pain. The Saddhsu, on the other hand, presents an extended series of meditations that allow a meditator to observe the elemental manodhātu,55 arrive at a feeling-state of equanimity as an outgrowth of insight into this aspect of mind, and ultimately observe how all of the appearances of phenomenal reality arise—like the painting of a master painter—in an elaborate spread of karmically conditioned qualia. These parallel, yet alternative theories

of mind and experience obliquely reflect one another across divides of yogācāra thought. The Saddhsu’s engagement with the phenomenology of consciousness reveals an idiosyncratic theory of mind and a particular understanding of the “hard problem” of consciousness that has mystified philosophers and scientists for centuries. It sanctions the understanding of consciousness as a basic substantive element of human existence, while also conceding that such consciousness is illusory, or both the generative force and constitutive content of a world of illusion. Nonetheless, the process of seeing how the illusion is generated, and a deliberate cognitive engagement with such a process, permit a practitioner to take control of the situation and, ultimately, to participate in it as a

hyperreality—a world generated by consciousness in which ideal qualities can be cultivated, but within which contingencies of everyday human reality can also be subsumed. The highs and lows of phenomenal experience, such as pain and pleasure or joy and sadness, thus become tools deliberately appropriated in an enactive meditative inward turn, an intentional engagement with the construction of the fundaments of consciousness— what phenomenologists might refer to as the life-world (Lebenswelt). This halfs ´a¯stric, half-literary theory of mind, which emerges in the context of describing meditative practice while reworking su ¯tric and a¯bhidharmic textual frameworks, gives us a new lens through which to envision the formative period of the Yoga¯ca¯ravijn ˜a¯nava¯da project.


Abhidharma, Illusion, and Practice


Having surveyed the core meditation practice of the Saddhsu and the theory of mind that emerges from it, we now turn to another aspect of the text that reflects on key developments in Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought. The standard narrative of the historical development of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought—primarily conceived by Lambert Schmithausen—involves a combination of influences such as traditional yogācāra meditation practices, Abhidharma frameworks of thought, and the 55 It is noteworthy that the Saddhsu’s treatment of the eighteen mental explorations of the *Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra incorporates a framework of ethically conditioned karmic ripening that is not present in the canonical sūtra. On this point, see Stuart (2015a, Vol. I, pp. 114–116 and 316–325). D. M. Stuart


background of the development of a Maha¯ya¯na “illusionism.”56 A number of passages from the sixth chapter of the Saddhsu contain evidence of a unique combination of all of these elements in a single presentation. In this section, the yoga practitioner (yogācāra)—the main actor of the text—envisions how a meditator observes the arising and passing away (cyutyupapatti) of the deities of the heaven of the thirty-three (trayastriṃśadeva). The text describes the meditator, in turn, observing S ´akra, the lord of the gods, giving a Dharma talk to his fellow deities. In the talk, S ´akra outlines a series of dharmas in lists ranging from one (eko dharmo prahātavyaḥ [pramādaḥ]) to twenty (viṃśati satvāvāsāḥ kāmadhātupagā teṣāṃ gatinikāyakaraṇaprabhavāḥ parijñeyāḥ).57 The frame for these lists is in itself interesting in terms of the history of Buddhist doctrine because it presents S ´akra teaching an idiosyncratic Abhidharma method.

What is more, in this presentation, S ´akra even states that he is teaching the Dharma to the deities as he himself heard it from the Buddha.58 This seems to allude to the story of the Buddha teaching the Abhidharma to his mother, who had been reborn among the deities of the heaven of the thirty-three. But the details of these lists are more important than the frame. In S ´akra’s exposition, we find a series of unique dharmas, the study of which offers the student of Abhidharma insight into a transitional framework of Abhidharma thought. I use


56 For a useful pre ´cis of these various historical factors—presented in a discussion of the formation of the Yogācārabhūmi-śāstra attributed to Asan ˙ga—see Deleanu (2006, pp. 154–183, particularly 172–176). 57 See Ms 217a1–229a5 (The teachings on ten through 13 dharmas and sixteen dharmas in this list have been edited in Stuart (2015a, Vol. II, pp. 308–368)): 1. eko dharmo prahātavyaḥ (pramāda) 2. dvau dharmau bhāvayitavyau (śamatha, vipaśyanā) 3. trayo doṣāḥ prahātavyāḥ (rāga, dveṣa, moha) 4. catvāry āryasatyāni bhāvayitavyāni 5. pañcasurakṣitāni karaṇīyāni (5 vi ṣayas) 6. ṣaḍ rakṣaṇīyāni (6 indriyas) 7. sapta

suparijñeyāni karttavyāni sapta bodhyaṅgāni (smṛti, dharmavicaya, vīrya, prīti, prasrabdhi, samādhi, upekṣā; for characteristics of these dharmas, see Ms 217b7) 8. aṣṭābhir mārggair prayātavyaṃ samyaksaṁkalpādyaiḥ (āryāṣṭ‹āṅg›om ārggaḥ) 9. nava satvāvāsāḥ parijñeyāḥ teṣāñ ca karmmaphalaprāptaye 10. daśa bhaumikā dharmāḥ (daśa bhaumikā dharmāḥ, da śa kleśamahābhaumikā dharmāḥ, da śa parīttabhaumikā dharmāḥ, da śa ku śalamahābhaumikā dharmāḥ) 11. ekādaśa bh āvanāḥ jñātavyāḥ 12. dvādaśāny āyatanāni parijñeyāni 13. trayodaśa sm ṛtyanubaddhāni karttavyāni 14.caturdaśadhācittaṃparibhāvitavyaṃ([Ms220b7–221a1]:dhṛtyā,v īryeṇa,śrameṇa,‹ā›cāryopāsanena, pāpamitraparivarjanena, buddhavacanābhyāsena, yoniśomanaskārābhyāsena, auddhatyaparivarjanena,

dharmmādharmmahetuphalaśraddhadhānena, pūrvakāmānusmaraṇena, strīdarśanaparivarjjanena, na jñātidarśanātīvāpracāreṇa, sarvaviṣayasanvāraṇena, maraṇacyutyatibhayena) 15. (pañcadaśadhā) vastūni parijñeyāni 16. ṣoḍaśākārāā nāpānānusmṛtir jñeyāḥ 17. saptadaśa bhavāntarāṇis āsravāṇi gatyanubandhena prahātavyāni 18. aṣṭādaśānāṃ dhātūnāṃ lakṣaṇaṃ parijñeyaṃ 19. ekonaviṃṡaty antarābhavikāni parijñeyāni 20. viṃśati satvāvāsāḥ kāmadhātupagā teṣāṃ gatinikāyakaraṇaprabhavāḥ parijñeyāḥ. 58 Stuart 2015a (Vol. II): 350 (Ms 223a1–2): yathāśrutā mayā yeṣāṃ gurūṇām antikān mokṣapuravighaṭānāpāna-smṛtiḥ,s ā mayāśrutā paramparayā, paurāṇānāṃ devānām antikāc chrutvā, tathaiva bhagavato ’py antikāt tathaiva śrutvā,t ām ahaṃ tathaiva teṣāṃ devānāṃ deśayiṣyāmi.


the term ‘transitional’ here to contextualize the Saddhsu in relationship to classical scriptural sources. That is, these dharma lists can probably be located historically between the time of the redaction of the Mahāvibhāṣā and the time of the authorship of the Abhidharmakośa, as briefly mentioned already. Access to these relatively early lists of dharmas, particularly in their original Sanskrit, is important for a study of the broader history of Abhidharma doctrine. The dharma lists are also quite clearly embedded in teachings about meditative practice, which allows us a glimpse into the fundamental tie—at least among the yogācāras that transmitted the Saddhsu —between ethical and meditative practices on the one hand, and Abhidharma doctrine on the other. The passages I want to

look at in detail come right in the middle of S ´akra’s Dharma talk, where he elucidates four sets of ten “foundational” dharmas(daśa bhaumikā dharmāḥ). These particular lists represent a specific development of Sarva¯stiva¯din Abhidharma theory, in which we see the emergence of notions of multiple “universaldharmas that appear in all mental states or specific types of wholesome or unwholesome mental states. It is apparent, based on a reading of a number of other contemporaneous scholastic treatises, that these dharmas were contested outside of the Sarva¯stiva¯da fold. We see no obvious sign of that in our text, however, so it seems to have been written by Sarva¯stiva¯dins for Sarva¯stiva¯dins, or by some species thereof. We do, nonetheless, encounter many unorthodox propositions, and this means that we have to think quite broadly about our definition of “Sarva¯stiva¯din.”59 At this point in the text, we encounter a rather

interesting textual phenomenon. In its elucidation of the third set of ten dharmas, described as “foundational to limited [[[mental states]]]” (parīttabhaumika), the original format of the text appears to be altered. The basic format of these passages is that the dharmas are listed and then their basic characteristics are described. For example, the first passage dealing with a set of ten foundational dharmas that are present in every mental state lists out the dharmas and then gives brief definitions of each:60 “tatra daśa dharmā yaduta: ‘vedanā, sañjñā, cetanā, sparśaḥ, manasikāraḥ, chandaḥ, ’dhimokṣaḥ, sm ṛtiḥ, samādhiḥ, prajñā ceti.’

ete, grāmaṇī, da śa dharmā bhaumikāḥ. sahacittenaite utpadyante, pṛthaklakṣaṇāś ca. teṣāṃ lakṣaṇaṃ parijñeyam, yad yasya dharmasya lakṣaṇam. yugapac caite utpadyante, dharmādityasya raśmayaḥ. evam ete dharmāḥ sahacittenotpadyante nyūnādhikalakṣaṇāḥ. tatra vedanā yayā sarvadharmān vetti. sañjñā sañjānanalakṣaṇā. ye dharmāḥ sañjānīte pṛthagbhāvalakṣaṇayuktāḥ, sā sañjñā. cetanā nāma manasaś ceṣṭā trividhā, ku śalākuśalāvyākṛtā ca. punar api trividhā,k āyāśritā vāgāśritā manaāśritā cālakṣaṇataḥ. trayāṇāṃ sannipātāt sparśaḥ, trivedanīyaḥ. kathaṃ, gr āmaṇī, trivedanīyaḥ? sukhavedanīyaḥ duḥkhavedanīyaḥ aduḥkhasukhavedanīyaḥ, yasya manasikāro nāma, grāmaṇī, dharmāṇām āvarjakaḥ. chando nāma yaḥ kartuvyabhiprāyaḥ.

59 On this issue, see fn. 45 above. 60 Stuart (2015a, Vol. II, pp. 308–309) (Ms 218a5–b1).


adhimokṣon āma, grāmaṇī, pratibhānaṃ ca yena pratibhānam utpadyate. śraddhā nāma śraddadhānatā.v īryaṃ nāma, grāmaṇī, utsāhaḥ. sm ṛtir nāmālambanasyābhilapanatāsampramoṣaś cetasaḥ. samādhi nāma, grāmaṇī, cittasyaikāgratā. prajñā nāma dharmavibhāgo yayā dharmāṇāṃ pravibhāgaṃ kurute.”61 “Now there are ten dharma-s, namely: ‘feeling, perception, intention, contact, attention, decision, confidence (adhimokṣa), awareness, concentration and discernment.’ These, leader, are the ten foundational dharma-s. They arise with the mind and have separate characteristics. Their characteristics should be fully known, each characteristic of each dharma. The rays of the Dharmasun arise simultaneously (yugapat). Similarly, these dharma-s arise with the mind, their characteristics [[[manifesting]]] to a lesser or greater [[[degree]]]. Feeling is that by which one knows (vetti) all dharma-s. Perception has the characteristic of perceiving.

Perception is those dharma-s that perceive and are engaged with the characteristics of distinct states. Intention is known as threefold activity of mind (manas): 1. wholesome, 2. unwholesome, and 3. morally indeterminate. It is additionally threefold not according to characteristic: 1. dependent on body, 2. dependent on speech, and 3. dependent on mind. Due to the conjunction of three [aspects of cognition], contact [arises], to be felt in three ways. How is it be felt in three ways? It is to be felt as pleasant, painful, or neither-pleasant-nor-painful. What we call attention is [[[attention]]] to these [[[feelings]]], leader, [and is

understood as] advertence to dharma-s. Decision is the will to act. Confidence, leader, is boldness or that by which boldness arises. Faith is the state of conviction (śraddadhānatā). Effort, leader, is strength of will. Awareness is the state of discourse with an object, that is: presence of mind (cetas). Concentration, leader, is one-pointedness of mind (citta). Discernment is the dividing (vibhāga) ofdharma-s, that by which one properly divides dharma-s(pravibhāgaṃ kurute).”


The format is similar for the second list of ten. However, when it comes to the third list of ten dharmas, the ten dharmas “foundational to limited [[[mental states]]],” their treatment is broken in the middle, when the text arrives at the dharma of māyā or “illusion.” What is then presented in the text is an elaborate elucidation of the “twelve sense spheres to be fully known” (dvādaśāyatanāni parijñeyāni), which is one of the items of S ´akra’s broader treatment of dharmas numbering one through twenty.62 When this elucidation is complete, the text then resumes its treatment of the third list of ten dharmas and goes on to finish the fourth set of ten dharmas, which has the same structure as the first two sets. This appears to be an instance of deliberate and creative textual meddling. The passage on the “twelve sense spheres to be fully known” was originally presented where one would expect it, after the “eleven cultivations” (ekādaśa bh āvanāḥ) and before the “thirteen bonds of awareness” (trayodaśa sm ṛtyanubandhāḥ). At some point in the transmission of the text, an innovative scribe or redactor, with a specific


61 D ra 244b6–245a5; T. 721, 17:192a13–29. 62 See fn. 57 above.


doctrinal take on the material, altered the text in a way that thoroughly transformed the doctrinal import of the dharma illusion (māyā).63 Let us now look at the passage in detail. It begins in the same way as the two sections on foundational dharmas that preceded it. S ´akra states:64 “anye daśa dharmā, gr āmaṇī, ye parīttabhaumikā nāma bhavanti. katare te? tadyathā: krodhaḥ, upan āhaḥ, madaḥ, pradāśaḥ,m āyā, śāṭhyam, īrṣyā, mātsaryam, mānātimānam. ete, grāmaṇī, par īttabhūmisaṅgṛhītā bhāvitamuktatvāt parīttabhūmikā bhavanti. tatra krodho nāma kupitaḥ, caṇḍatā cetasaḥ. upanāho nāma dṛḍhatā vairaprasaṅgasya. mado nāma

mandapāpakasya karaṇam. pradāśon āma adharmasya dṛḍhagrahitā.”65 “There are another ten dharma-s, leader, which are known as foundational of limited mental states (parīttabhaumika). What are they? They are: Anger, resentment, intoxication (mada), contentiousness (pradāśa), illusion, guile, jealousy (īrṣyā), stinginess, conceit, and overestimation. These, leader, being subsumed within the stages of limited mental states, are foundational of limited mental states because they are divorced from cultivation. Here, anger is offense, cruelty of mind. Resentment is firmness in clinging to hostility. Intoxication is the doing of evil due to weakness (mandapāpaka). Contentiousness is holding firmly to what is not Dharma.” Up until this point, we find what we would expect: a listing out of the ten dharmas and a brief definition of each. However, the next sentence marks a point of punctuation in the text. Without any editorial changes, the Sanskrit

manuscript reads in the following way:66 māyā nāma vañcanā bhavati | yayā67 vaṃcyavate68 dvādaśāyatanāni parijñeyāni | grāmaṇī katarāṇit āni …69 The verb vaṃcyavate here is likely some sort of corruption, but it is difficult to decide how to emend the text. When we take recourse to the Chinese and Tibetan translations of the Saddhsu, the problem becomes compounded because the two translations interpret the text differently. 云何名幻? 誑眾生故, 為十二入之所誑惑, 故名為幻 。天子當知 。 云何十 二入?…70


63 It remains a question whether the alteration was deliberate. It could have originally occurred by simple scribal error, though this seems somewhat unlikely. 64 Stuart (2015a, Vol. II, pp. 310–313) (Ms 218b3–4). 65 D ra 245b3–6; T. 721, 17:192b18–26. 66 Ms 218b4. 67 yayā ] em.; yaṃyā Ms; gang gis D; n.e. Ch. 68 vaṃcyavate ] One would expect vacya(n)te or vañcante. 69 Cf. Vasubandhu’s Pañcaskandhaka: māyā katamā | paravañcanābhiprāyasyābhūtārthasandarśanatā | (PSk 11). 70 T. 721, 17:192b26–28.


(*māyā nāma vañcanā bhavati, yayā vaṃcyante dvādaśāyatanāni. parijñeyāni, grāmaṇī. katarāṇit āni? [?]) Translation of the Chinese: “What do we call illusion? Because it deceives beings, and by [it] the twelve sense spheres are deceived, therefore it is called illusion. Deity, [they] should be known. What are the twelve?”


TranslationofthereconstructedSanskrit:“Illusionisdeception,bywhichthetwelve sense spheres, which are to be fully known, are deceived. Leader, what are they?” sgyu zhes bya ba ni slu ba yin te gang gis slu bar byed pa’o || skye mched bcu gnyis shes par bya zhes ‘byung ba de dag gi gtso bo gang yin zhe na |71 (*māyā nāma vañcanā bhavati, yayā vañcayate. dvādaśāyatanāni parijñeyāni, grāmaṇī, katarāṇit āni? [?])


Translation of the Tibetan: “‘Illusion’ is deception, by which [one] deceives. ‘The twelve sense spheres which are to be fully known,’ what is their leader?” Translation of the reconstructed Sanskrit: “Illusion is deception, by which [one] deceives. The twelve sense spheres are to be fully known. Leader, what are they?”


Although there are problems with both of these translations, it seems quite likely that the translators from both teams in fact read more or less the same text, with a variation between the active causative and passive forms of the verbal root √vañc, “to deceive.” Or,they

readtheverysametextandinterpreteditdifferently.However,itappearsthat the Chinese translators interpreted the text so that the interpolated passage was incorporated seamlessly into the grammar of the translation. On the other hand, the Tibetan translators translated the definition of māyā in conformity with the structures of the passages that preceded it. That is, they present the dharma, a definition of it by way of synonym, and a description of how it behaves. I consider it likely that the Tibetan translatorsunderstanding and punctuation of the text conforms with its original structure, before the passage on the

“twelve sense spheres to be fully known” was incorporated into it. However, the punctuation of the Sanskrit manuscript largely supports the Chinese translatorsinterpretation of the text, and the possibility of a deliberate insertion of the section on the twelve sense spheres stipulates that we read the text in such a way. I therefore follow the Chinese translators in emending the verb vaṃcyavate to the passive plural form vañcyante.72 I suggest that we see here an attempt on the part of the redactional tradition of the Saddhsu to rework a certain Sarva¯stiva¯da dharma theory—and the original structure of old textual material—in order to formulate a new doctrinal disposition centered around the single mental factor māyā. The passage on the twelve sense spheres that follows the initial definition of māyā helps to sort out some of the doctrinal implications of this textual alteration. Below I present three passages that display three important aspects of the Saddhsu’s presentation of the sense spheres. The passages should be read together and in order,


71 D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 245b6. 72 Here is a case in which the modern editor plays a central role in determining how a historically altered text gets constituted.


as they present a progression of ideas. The first passage outlines basic characteristics of the sense spheres:73 “tatra lakṣaṇam: cakṣur mahābhūtāni prasādam. rūpasya prativijñaptiḥ, asya kāraṇaṃ cakṣur bhavati. evaṃ śrotrādīnāṃ svalakṣaṇam avagantavyaṃ viṣayavibhāgataḥ. evaṃ lakṣaṇataḥ. svabhāvataḥ katham, grāmaṇī, parijñeyāni? svabhāvo nāmāviparyāsaḥ. pañcabhyo hetupratyayebhyaḥ cakṣurvijñānam utpadyate. kebhyaḥ? cak ṣurūpālokākāśamanasikārebhyaḥ. na ca tathāśrotravijñānam. tamasy atamasi vāśabdaṃ śṛṇoti. tatrālokyprādhānyam akiñcitkaraṃ bhavati. ghrāṇajihvākāyamanasāṃ tathaivālokyapradhānyam akiñcitkaraṃ bhavati. manovijñānasya tu bhavati cālokakṛtyaṃ na ca bhavati. kathaṃ bhavati ca na ca bhavati? yac cakṣurvijñānānubhūtam arthaṃ manovijñānam anubhavati. tatrālambanālokaṃ vinā bhavati, śeṣāṇāṃ tu vinā bhavati.”74


“First [by] characteristic: The eye is the [four] great elements and sensitive materiality (prasāda). The representation (prativijñapti) of a visual object has the eye as its cause. In the same way, the individual characteristic (svalakṣaṇa) of the ear etc. is to be understood according to the division of the sense-objects (viṣayavibhāgataḥ). This is according to characteristic. How, leader, [are the sense-spheres] to be fully known according to quality? Quality means ‘not false.’ Eye-consciousness arises due to five causal conditions (hetupratyaya). Which [[[conditions]]]? The eye, a visual object, light, space, and attention. But ear-consciousness is not the same. One hears a sound both in the darkness and in the light. Here the necessity of visual presentation does not apply at all. Similarly, the necessity of visual presentation does not apply at all for the nose, the tongue, the body, and the mind. But mind-consciousness [sometimes] engages in the activity of light and [sometimes] it does not. How is it that [sometimes] it does and [sometimes] it doesn’t? Mind-consciousness experiences the object that is experienced by eye-consciousness.75 In this regard, in the absence of light on the object, [[[mind-consciousness]]] occurs, but [it also] occurs in the absence of the remaining [[[causal conditions]]].”76


This passage presents the traditional doctrinal position that posits sense experience as a “representation” (prativijñapti; yǎnshí 眼識; so sor rig par byed pa), dependent on the material locus of the sense-sphere.77 It also expresses another traditional idea, that mind-consciousness (manovijñāna) is a unique faculty that partakes of the 73 Stuart (2015a, Vol. II, pp. 312–315) (Ms 218b4–6). 74 D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 246a1–5; T17 192c1–11. 75 Compare Saddhsu II §2.9. 76 This sentence is enigmatic, and the translation remains conjectural. 77 Cf. Akbh (16a): vijñānaṃ prativijñaptiḥ viṣayaṃ viṣayaṃ prati vijñaptir upalabdhir vijñānaskandha ity ucyate | sa punaḥṣ aḍ vijñānakāyāḥ cakṣurvijñānaṃ yāvan manovijñānam iti | I should point out here that the Chinese and Tibetan translations are ambiguous about how they translate the term prativijñapti (yǎnshí 眼識; so sor rig par byed pa). Neither team of translators, it seems, interpreted the term as ‘representation,’ if in fact prativijñapti is the word they read.


experiences of the other sense-spheres. This notion has already been engaged in our discussion of the mind-element from the second chapter of the Saddhsu.78 These are hardly new ideas, and similar concepts can be traced to Buddhist canonical texts.79 Yet the context and language of the present passage are unique and seem to parallel vijñānavāda ideas. The attempt to sort out the unique status of mind consciousness —its particular role in human experience and its specific representionalist relationship with the other sense doors—raises key philosophical issues that are central to an understanding of consciousness more generally. This model of mind, in line with some of the material already discussed, also seems to work toward a multilayered analysis of the mind from a single-layered

early Abhidharma model. Presented as they are, in the context of a definition of the dharma māyā or illusion, these philosophical engagements likewise take on a new illusionistic significance. The text goes on to further discuss specific aspects of the objects of various sense-spheres and the relationship of the sense-spheres to the mind/consciousness. It is worth reminding ourselves that these teachings are embedded in a meditative context, and that S ´akra is discoursing about how a meditation practitioner should discern the sense-spheres. He states:80 “punarapyāyatanāniparīkṣate.kānisannikṛṣṭagrāhīṇi,kāniviprakṛṣṭagrāhīṇi? tatra ghrāṇajihvākāyāḥ sannikṛṣṭāgrāhakāḥ. cakṣur nātidūrasannikṛṣṭagrāhakam. śrotraṃ nātisannikṛṣṭa-grāhakam. ghrāṇam atisannikṛṣṭam antargataṃ pūtigandham jighrate. yathādṛṣṭāsu pratiśrutkāsu tathā ca śrotram antargataṃ vāyuniścalaṃ śṛṇoti. sarvāni cemāni vijñānāni dvābhyāṃ vijñānābhyāṃ bhavati: cakṣurvijñānena ca manasā ca. etāni sarvāṇi sampratibaddhāni. yathendhananānātvād agninānātvam bhavaty ekasyāgneḥ, tathā vijñānānām api bhavati. hetupratyayasanniśrayanānātvād vijñānanānātvam. evaṃ, grāmaṇī, āyatanāni jānīte. sa na pramādavihārī bhavati. sa teṣu na rajyate, na muhyate, na dveśam upayāti. sa satpuruṣo na m ṛtyusamaye yamapuruṣānāṃ bibheti. na vikṛtavadano, na paścādbāhupāśabaddho bhavati. nayamalokaṃpaśyati.nanarakapretatiryakṣūpapadyate.paramasukhībhavati, naiṣṭikaṃ ca parāṃ prītim anubhavate. na pramādenāpahriyate.”81


“One further investigates the sense-spheres. Which [sense-spheres] grasp a near [[[object]]], and which grasp a distant [[[object]]]? In this regard, the nose, tongue and body grasp a near [[[object]]]. The eye grasps objects that are not very far and near. The ear grasps distant [[[objects]]]. The nose smells an extremely near internal putrid scent. Just as with echoes that are not seen, in the same way the ear hears the internal movement of wind. All of these consciousnesses occur by way of two consciousnesses: eye-consciousness and the mind. These are all bound together. Just as due to the diversity of types of firewood there is a diversity of fires, [and yet only] one fire, so also is consciousness. Due to a 78 See the Section “The Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra” above. 79 See, for example, SN 48.42 at SN V 217–218 and MN 43 at MN I 295 (parallel with MA ¯ 211 at T. I 791b12–17). I provide the Pa¯li passage in fn. 21 above. 80 Stuart (2015a, Vol. II, pp. 314–317). 81 D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 246a7–246b3; T. 721, 17:192c15–23.


diversity of causes, conditions, and supports, there comes about a diversity of consciousness. In this way, leader, one knows the sense-spheres. He does not live heedlessly (pramādavihārī). He is not desirous, ignorant, or hateful toward those [sense-spheres]. That good man does not fear Yama’s henchmen at the time of death. His countenance is not troubled, and his arms are not bound behind his back by a noose (paścādbāhupāśabaddha). He does not see the world of Yama. He is not reborn among denizens of hell, hungry ghosts, or animals. He is supremely happy, and experiences supreme rapture free of desire. He is not carried off by heedlessness.”


Two aspects of this passage are important. Firstly, we see a movement inward, despite the fact that external sense objects are being discussed. Though sense objects can be far or near, what gets emphasized here is the internal sounds and smells of the practitioner. Secondly, we see a refinement in understanding of the dominant experiential roles of the subtlest forms of consciousness: eye-consciousness and mind-consciousness.82 This emphasis suggests that grosser aspects of consciousness depend on subtler aspects, and concomitantly that grosser forms of consciousness can essentially be reduced to subtler aspects of consciousness.

The simile underwrites this reduction of consciousness and takes it further, suggesting a single basic aspect of consciousness while acknowledging the diversity of its manifestations. Such a reduction gestures towards an idealistic phenomenology, while not quite explicitly expounding such a position. Finally, explaining how a meditator should ultimately see the sense spheres, S ´akra explains:83 “punar api tāny āyatanāni anityaduḥkhaśūnyānātmata āśrayābhibhavataḥ pratyayābhibhavataś ca pratyavekṣate. na pramādavaśago bhavati: ‘utpannam api cakṣurvijñānaṃ māyopamaṃ riktakaṃ tucchakam asārakam. tasya dhvastasyānyaiḥśrotravijñānamutpadyate.tadapiriktaṃtucchamasārakam.’evaṃṣaḍ ādhyātmikāny āyatanāni ṣaḍ bāhyāni pratyavekṣate. utpadyamānāni dhvasyamānāni vigrāhīṇis āsvādāni calāni sopadravāṇi anyonyahetupratyayajātāni yathābhūtāni prajānīte. na sa rūpādyair apahriyate. manāpāmanāpādyair evam apramattasya na divyāḥ kāmāś ca cittam ākṣipante, kuto mānuṣāḥ.”84


“One further discriminatingly examines the sense-spheres as impermanent, suffering, empty and not-self, as powered by the body (āśrayābhibhavataḥ), and as powered by conditions. He is not under the power of heedlessness: ‘Even though eye-consciousness has arisen, it is like an illusion, hollow, useless, without substance. When it has passed away, ear-consciousness arises. That is also hollow, useless, and without substance.’ In this way, one discriminatingly examines the six internal sense-spheres and the six external sense-spheres. He knows them as they are: arising, passing away, grasping, 82 The acknowledgement of the particular importance of eye-consciuosness here is noteworthy, as such understandings become central to later fully developed Maha¯ya¯na and tantric contemplative traditions, particularly those that use visualization as a primary technique of practice. 83 Stuart (2015a, Vol. II, pp. 316–317) (Ms 219a2–3). 84 D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 246b7-247a2; T17 192c29-193a7.


relishing, fluctuating, assaulting, and coming into existence due to interdependent (anyonya-) causes and conditions. He is not carried off by visual objects etc., be they pleasant or unpleasant. For one who is thus heedful, divine desires do not distract the mind. How then [might he be distracted by the desires] of men?” Here the text returns to the theme of illusion (māyā). What is notable about this passage is that ten of the twelve sense-spheres are traditionally understood to be material, while the spheres of mind and dharmas are immaterial. Here, however, we find something of a conflation of the sense-spheres with the six forms of sense consciousness. That is, by experiencing the ephemerality of sense-consciousness, a meditator sees the sense-spheres as impermanent, suffering,

empty and not-self. Moreover, the sense-spheres are described as being “powered by the body” (āśrayābhibhavataḥ). In this case, it seems that the ephemerality of the mind is being deduced from the given of the ephemerality of the body.85 To sum up: the basic doctrinal intent of these passages is to underline the fictitious nature of all sense experience, which is first simply a representation of materiality and can ultimately be reduced to a single form of mind-consciousness. Such consciousness manifests in six ways according to the six sense-spheres and their respective objects, and these experiences are ultimately a fiction that must be discerned and disregarded. This treatment of the dharma māyā in the Saddhsu, then, contains a number of factors central to the early history of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought. Firstly, the passages above show a clear engagement with Abhidharma theory and the dharma lists of the Sarva¯stiva¯da. Secondly, the amalgamation of the dharma lists with a description of how to discern the sense-spheres in meditative practice underlines the close connection between dharma theory, meditative practice, and theories of mind. Thirdly, the fact that our redactors focused on the single dharma of illusion (māyā) to develop their doctrinal ideas shows a clear engagement with doctrinal trends that are seemingly less important to many early a¯bhidharmikas. For instance,


85 Cf. SN IV 2.1.7.255 (Be) (SN IV 211–212): “tassa ce, bhikkhave, bhikkhuno evaṃ satassa sampajānassa appamattassa ātāpino pahitattassa viharato uppajjati sukhā vedanā, so evaṃ pajānāti: ‘uppannā kho myāyaṃ sukhā vedanā.s ā ca kho paṭicca, no appaṭicca. kiṃ paṭicca? imam eva kāyaṃ paṭicca. ayaṃ kho pana kāyo anicco saṅkhato paṭiccasamuppanno. aniccaṃ kho pana saṅkhataṃ paṭiccasamuppannaṃ kāyaṃ paṭicca uppannā sukhā vedanā kuto niccā bhavissatī’ti! so kāye ca sukhāya ca vedanāya aniccānupassī viharati, vayānupassī viharati, virāgānupassī viharati, nirodhānupassī viharati, paṭinissaggānupassī viharati. tassa kāye ca sukhāya ca vedanāya aniccānupassino viharato, vayānupassino viharato, virāgānupassino viharato, nirodhānupassino viharato, paṭinissaggānupassino viharato, yo kāye ca sukhāya ca vedanāya rāgānusayo, so pahīyati.” (“For the monk dwelling in this way, mindful, cognizant, diligent, ardent, and energetic, there arises pleasant feeling. He discerns it in the following way: ‘Pleasant feeling has arisen for me. It is dependent, not without dependence. On what does it depend? It is

depedent on this very body. Furthermore, this body is impermanent, composite, dependently arisen. How can a pleasant feeling that has arisen in dependence on a body that is impermanent, composite, and [itself] dependently arisen, be permanent?!’ He dwells observing the impermanence of pleasant feeling, the fading away [of pleasant feeling], dispassion [for pleasant feeling], the cessation [of pleasant feeling], the complete relinquishment [of pleasant feeling]. While dwelling observing the impermanence of pleasant feeling, the fading away [of pleasant feeling], dispassion [for pleasant feeling], the cessation [of pleasant feeling], the complete relinquishment [of pleasant feeling] in the body, the latent tendency to craving for pleasant feeling in the body is abandoned.”)


Vasubandhu—the paradigmatic Yoga¯ca¯rin—does not depart from a traditional Abhidharma interpretation of the dharma māyā, even in some of his more developed works such as the Pañcaskandhaka (PSk 11). Finally, the fact that the text was manipulated based on a prexisting, more conservative, model shows clearly the process of doctrinal and textual development that often eludes scholars in our attempts to historically contextualize these enigmatic texts. The Continuum Consciousness (bhavāṅga) and Seeds (bīja) of Rebirth


The key technical term bhavāṅga, or continuum consciousness, found in S ´akra’s Abhidharma teaching discussed above,86 is likewise significant for our discussion of the development of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought because it is invoked by Vasubandhu —and in the Tibetan translation of Asan ˙ga’s Mahāyānasaṅgraha87—as a possible precursor and equivalent of the ālayavijñāna (Cousins 1981, p. 22, fn. 1). The term bhavāṅga refers to a form of consciousness that bridges moments of phenomenal consciousness and plays an important role in rebirth. Asan ˙ga’s Mahāyānasaṅgraha also refers to a form of consciousness, or an aggregate, that persists throughout the process of rebirth (ji srid pa’i phung po rnams; 乃至世間陰 不斷; 窮生死陰; 窮生死蘊), which he explains as a concept taught by the Mahı¯s ´a¯saka school.88 Lance Cousins, who studied the history of the term bhavaṅga in the Pa¯li tradition, noted the earliest occurrences of the term in the Paṭṭhāna, the latest of Pa¯li canonical Abhidhamma texts (first–second c. BCE), and in early scholastic texts such as the Milindapañha, the Nettipakaraṇa and the

Peṭakopadesa, three texts now considered by most scholars to have connections to Gandha¯ra (Cousins 1981, pp. 23–25). Cousins suggests that the bhavaṅga of the Peṭakopadesa—which is possibly originally a Mahı¯s ´a¯saka (Mahim ˙ sa¯saka) text89—and the Mahı¯s ´a¯saka continuumaggregate” that Asan ˙ga refers to may be related or equivalent concepts (Cousins 1981, p. 23, nn. 2–3). He likewise intimates that this concept may have had a direct historical tie to the Pa¯li tradition, which already had a developed notion of bhavaṅgacitta, a model of mind that likewise became central to the developed Abhidhamma system of the Therava¯da tradition.90 Commenting on Asan ˙ga’s claims


86 This term can be found in S ´akra’s treatment of “seventeen fluxing intermediary forms of consciousness leading to rebirth that are to be abandoned” (Ms 223b5–228a3: saptadaśa bhavāntarāṇi sāsravāṇi gatyanubandhena prahātavyāni). 87 Msg I.11–12 (pp. 7–8). For an English translation of this passage, see Waldron (2003, p. 131 and Appendix II). See also T. 1592, 31:97c27–98a18; T. 1593, 31:114b26–c10; T. 1594, 31:134a17–134b1. The term bhavāṅga is not found in any of the Chinese translations of the Maha¯ya¯nasan ˙graha. One of the key issues at play in these discussions is the characteristic and role of appropriation ([up]ādāna) for forms of consciousness that function as continuum or substratum consciousnesses. 88 Msg I.11.3; 1592, 31:98a10–13; T. 1593, 31:114c6–8; T. 1594, 31:134a24–27. 89 Cousins dates the Peṭakopadesa to the final centuries BCE. Zacchetti’s (2002) work on a very old Chinese translation (148 CE) of a text almost exactly parallel with the sixth chapter of the Peṭakopadesa, the Suttasamuccayabhūmi, confirms this possibility. 90 On the developed theory of bhavaṅga in the Therava¯da Abhidhamma, see Gethin (1994).


about the antiquity of such concepts, Cousins writes: “Whether there is any direct influence or not, only from Therava¯din sources can we at present hope to investigate Asan ˙ga’s claim.” (Cousins 1981, p. 23) Evidence provided by the Saddhsu has now changed this state of affairs. The use of the technical term bhavāṅga in the text’s sixth chapter provides a new piece to this still incomplete puzzle. It bridges the historical gap between the term’s earliest attestations in Pa¯li sources as well as its later use in developed Pa¯li Abhidhamma, but it also connects to some species of Sarva¯stiva¯da Abhidharma. In what follows, I present passages from the Saddhsu in which we can discern a theory of rebirth consciousness. I show how the concept of bhavāṅga—as a form of continuum or substratum consciousness—serves a bridging function in the context of this theory of rebirth while retaining its traditional association with the process of dependent origination (pratītyasamutpāda). The passages I present here are excerpts from fairly elaborate descriptions of seventeenpossiblerebirth processes.91 Theprocessofrebirthinvolves asuccessionof moments of consciousness at death, an intermediary state of consciousness, and moments of rebirth consciousness. In the intermediary state, karmic signs appear and, duetodesireandclinging,abeingtakesrebirthinaplacethataccordswiththosesigns. It is in these contexts that we find reference to bhavāṅga consciousness. For example, in describing the sixth intermediary state of consciousness, the text states:92


91 The seventeen forms of rebirth are (there is a small discrepancy between the Chinese and Sanskrit and Tibetan lists): 1. Death as a man (manuṣya) and rebirth as a deity (deva) (sign: white cloth [pāṇḍarapaṭa]) 2. Death as a man (puruṣa) of Jambudvı¯pa and rebirth in Uttarakuru (sign: red cloth [lohitapaṭa]) 3. Death as a man in Jambudvı¯pa and rebirth among men (manuṣya) of Goda¯nika (sign: yellow cloth [pītapaṭa]) 4. (Death as a man in Jambudvı¯pa and) rebirth among men (manuṣya) of Pu ¯rvavideha (sign: blue cloth [nīlapaṭa]) 5. Death in Uttarakuru and rebirth among deities by way of great karma (sign: lowly space [[[ākāśa]]]) 6. Death as a man (manuṣya) in Uttarakuru and rebirth among deities by way of middling karma (sign: a beautiful lotus [[[padma]] paramaramaṇīya]) 7. Death in Uttarakuru and rebirth among deities of the pleasant abodes of the Heaven of the Thirty-three by way of a distinguished karma (sign: beautiful celestial mansions

[paramaramaṇīyāni vimānāni]) 8. Death in Uttarakuru and rebirth among deities of the Heaven of the Thirty-three by way of various types of karma (signs: pleasure parks and celestial mansions [udyānapaṃktayaḥ paramaramaṇīyāni etc.]) 10. (9 is absent in Ms. An additional unnumbered item can be found at the end of the list) Death as a man (manuṣya) in Goda¯nika and rebirth among deities by way of good karma (sign: a stream of fresh blue water [nīlapānīyaugha]) 11. Death as a man (puruṣa) in Pu ¯rvavideha and rebirth in heaven (svarga) (signs: a decorated house and beautiful singing women) 12. Death as a hungry ghost and rebirth among deities (signs: lessening of thirst and hunger and pleasantness of the sense faculties) 13. Death as an animal and rebirth as in the Heaven of the Thirty-three

(sign: light [[[āloka]]]) 14. Death as a denizen of hell and rebirth among the deities of the Four Great Kings (sign: supreme suffering becomes supreme pleasure etc.) 15. Death as a man and rebirth as a man (manuṣya) (sign: the falling shadow of a mountain) 16. Death as a deity of the Four Great Kings and rebirth in the Heaven of the Thirty-three (signs: lovely objects, pleasing for all of the five senses [pañcaviṣayaśobhanataraṃ nimittaṃ]) 17. Death as a deity and rebirth as a lesser deity (signs: tanks and springs etc. [taḍāgotsaprasravaṇāḥ]). 92 Saddhsu Ms 224b6–7 [T. 721, 17:198b24–c1; D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 259a4–7].


“uttarakuruṣu93 cyutasya manuṣyasya madhyamena karmmaṇā tasyemāni gatyantaranimittāni bhavanti | tadyathā paśyati maraṇadeśakāle niyatantāni | yathā padmaṃ paramaramaṇīya[ṃ] bhramaropaśobhitaṃ samantataḥ paramasugandhitam ārohate lobhenākrāntamanasaḥ ‹|› yadārūḍho bhavati | tadā tat padmaṃ gaganatalam utpadyate | samanantarādhirūḍhaḥ punar api tad evākāśa[224b7]m adhirūhamāna94 ākāśam avagacchate | svapne yathā punarupapattikāle paśyati {|} padmāni ramaṇīyatarāṇi bh[r]amaropaśobhitavātarāṇi sarvataś ca ramaṇīyatarāṇi ‹|› sa evam upādatte |‘ apīdānīm aham etāni sthānā[ny u]pādadyām95 | etāni padmāni syuḥ ‹|›’ tasya sahopādānāni devopapattir bhavati | bhavāṅga eṣa evaṃ deveṣu ‹|› madhyamena karmaṇā madhyamā upapattir bhavati {|} devaloke ‹|›”


“For a man who has died among the Uttarakurus, there are these signs, because of middling karma, that he sees coming at the time and place of his death: an extremely beautiful lotus, resplendent with bees and wafting an excellent scent. He mounts [it], his mind overcome with desire. Once he has mounted it, that lotus rises into the sky. Right after he has arisen, while rising up further into that very space, he [then] descends into it.96 As though in a dream, at the time of rebirth he sees even more lovely lotuses, resplendent with bees and delightful in every way. He grasps [at them]: ‘Indeed, I should now get (upādadyām) those things .97 These lotuses should exist.’ There [thus] comes about rebirth as a deity connected with his graspings. This is the continuum consciousness (bhavāṅga, literally: ‘factor of existence’) among deities. There is a middling rebirth in the realm of deities by way of a middling karma.” Here the term

bhavāṅga is used to describe intermediary and rebirth consciousness for rebirth in a middling realm of deities. Continued existence (bhava) results from a process of clinging (upādāna), which arises in connection with mental images—and concomitant materiality98—that present themselves at the time of death and in intermediary states before rebirth. Such forms of existence become new forms of birth. Though the text does not here make an explicit reference to the chain of dependent origination, it is nonetheless implicit in the process described. What is


93 uttarakuruṣu ] em.; uttamakuruṣu Ms. 94 adhirūhamāna ] corr.; adhirūhamānas Ms. 95 upādadyām ] em.;[ u]pādeyāni Ms. 96 This sentence is a bit puzzling, and I suspect the manuscript might be corrupt here. I have emended the text to read adhirūhamāna from adhirūhamānas in Ms, but this does not solve the problem of the somewhat awkard structure of the sentence. 97 I emend the text here to the optative upādadyām from the adjectival upādeyāni of Ms. 98 See Ms 72b1–2 [T. 721, 17:76a17–19; D no. 287, mdo sde, ya 252a1–2]: snehakṣayād iva dīpo ‹’›staṅgacchaty evam asāv astaṅgacchati | rūpam asyāntarābhavikam utpadyate {|} ‹’›nidarśanam apratigham ‹|› (“Like a lamp goes out due to the dissipation of oil, in the same way that [[[person]]] perishes. The materiality of the intermediate being arises, invisible and intangible.”). This passage is interesting because it suggest that a subtle form of materiality, with characteristics generally only ascribed to avijñaptirūpa or “unmanifest materiality,” constitutes the body of a being in the rebirth process, at least the rebirth process in the lower hells. On this issue, see Stuart (2017).


explicit, however, is that the bhavāṅga here designates the entire process of becoming in rebirth, and encompasses the process of clinging at the moment of death and the process of existence as one attains a new birth. This corresponds similarly to how the term bhavaṅga functions in the Pa¯li Abhidhamma, where moments of death (cuti) and rebirth (patisandhi) are understood as “the first and last moments in a series of moments of bhavaṅga consciousness.” (Cousins 1981, p. 25) Another instance of the term bhavāṅga in the Saddhsu, found in a description of the eighth intermediary consciousness, does make an explicit connection with the doctrine of dependent origination (pratītyasamutpāda): 99 “tadanantaraṃ paśyati tridaśāni vimānāny atīvaramyāṇy100 anekaramaṇīyatarāṇi101 sarvakāni ‹|› tasyaivaṃ102 bhavati: ‘apīdānīm aham eva tadananta[225a4]raṃ prāpayeya[ṃ] ‹|›’ sahacittotpādād eva ihopapadyate | upādānapratyayobhavaḥ103|bhavāṅgo‹’›yam‹|›evaṃtriviśiṣṭamadhyamanyūna upapadyate104 |”


“Immediately thereafter, he sees many celestial mansions, all extremely delightful. He thinks: ‘Indeed, I myself should now reach [those mansions] immediately.’ Immediately upon the arising of that mental state, he is reborn here [in the Heaven of the Thirty-three]. Existence (bhava) depends upon clinging (upādāna). This is the continuum consciousness (bhavāṅga, literally: ‘factor of existence’). In this way, one is born as distinguished, middling, or inferior.” This clear reference to the links of dependent origination corresponds closely with how the term bhavāṅga is used in various early Abhidharma traditions, including those of the Sarva¯stiva¯da.105 This is also how the term is used in the Peṭakopadesa and the Nettipakaraṇa.106 But here, unlike in its more general use in broader


99 Saddhsu Ms 225a3–4 [T. 721, 17:198c14–21; D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 259b7–260a2]. 100 vimānāny atī˚ ] corr.; vimānānyi tīvaramyāṇy Ms. 101 anekaramaṇīyatarāṇi ] corr.; ānekaramaṇīyatarāṇi Ms. 102 tasyaivaṃ ] corr.; tāsyevaṃ Ms. 103 bhavaḥ ] em. after D T; bhavati Ms; srid pa'i yan lag la len pa'i rkyen gyis srid pa 'byung bar 'gyur ro D; 取因緣有 T. 104 ˚nyūna upapadyate ] corr.;˚nyūnopapadyate (?): The reading of Ms is possibly the result of double sandhi. 105 On the wide range of debates about intermediate states and rebirth consciousness, see Schmithausen (1987, pp. 300–323). 106 Cousins (1981, pp. 24–25). Nett 28–29: aparo nayo, assādamanasikāralakkhaṇo ayonisomanasikāro, tassa avijjā padaṭṭhānaṃ. saccasammohanalakkhaṇā avijjā,s ā saṅkhārānaṃ padaṭṭhānaṃ. punabbhavavirohaṇalakkhaṇā saṅkhārā, te viññāṇassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. opapaccayikanibbattilakkhaṇaṃ viññāṇaṃ, taṃ nāmarūpassa padaṭṭhānaṃ.nāmakāyarūpakāyasaṅghātalakkhaṇaṃ nāmarūpaṃ, taṃ chaḷāyatanassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. indriyavavatthānalakkhaṇaṃ chaḷāyatanaṃ, ta ṃ phassassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. cakkhurūpaviññāṇasannipātalakkhaṇo phasso, so vedanāya padaṭṭhānaṃ.i ṭṭhāniṭṭhaanubhavanalakkhaṇā vedanā,s ā taṇhāya padaṭṭhānaṃ. ajjhosānalakkhaṇā taṇhā,s ā upādānassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. opapaccayikaṃ upādānaṃ, ta ṃ bhavassa padaṭṭhānaṃ.n āmakāyarūpakāyasambhavanalakkhaṇo bhavo, so jātiyā padaṭṭhānaṃ. khandhapātubhavanalakkhaṇā jāti, sā jarāya padaṭṭhānaṃ. upadhiparipākalakkhaṇā jarā,s ā maraṇassa padaṭṭhānaṃ.j īvitindriyupacchedalakkhaṇaṃ maraṇaṃ, ta ṃ sokassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. ussukkakārako soko, so paridevassa padaṭṭhānaṃ.l ālappakārako


Abhidharma tradition, the term refers specifically to the link in the chain of dependent origination involving clinging and existence/becoming. Let us remember one of the key defining aspects of the ālayavijñāna of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯dins: the quality of clinging to or appropriating a basis or body (āśrayopādātṛ).107 Here in the Saddhsu, the concept of bhavāṅga appears to have much in common with and do much of the work of the ālayavijñāna, while at the same time maintaining its connection to the traditional a¯bhidharmic definition of the term.108 Since I have again invoked the ālayavijñāna here, it may be helpful to engage several additional passages from the sixth and seventh chapters of the Saddhsu that show a connection to another defining aspect of the

Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da theory of mind. Aside from being an appropriator of the body (āśrayopādātṛ), the ālayavijñāna is also defined as “containing all seeds” (sarvabījaka). Scholars such as Yamabe (1990), Kritzer (2005), and Park (2014) have shown the strong but mysterious connection between early Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought and possible precursors to it evidenced in references in Vasubandhu’s early works. These connections indicate the centrality of a theory of seeds (bīja) in the development of the Yoga¯ca¯ra theory of mind, but it remains unclear exactly how such a theory emerged—or whether it emerged at all—in connection with the ālayavijñāna. I have no clear solution to this mystery. However, several passages from the Saddhsu and the *Kāyasmṛtyupasthānasūtra,109 which is appended to and transmitted along with the Saddhsu, may offer some insight into this issue in a practice context as opposed to a scholastic one. They once

again provide an intermediate frame of reference in which an incipient theory of seeds, in connection with the process of consciousnessbody interdependence, emerges. In a very useful 2013 article, Yamabe notes the close similarities between the description of rebirth consciousness in the Manobhūmi of the Yogācārabhūmi attributed to Asan ˙ga, and the description of rebirth consciousness in the Yogācārabhūmi of Saṅgharakṣa (Yamabe 2013).110 He suggests that the compilers of the former likely drew on the material of the latter. He also suggests that the five


Footnote 106 continued paridevo, so dukkhassa padaṭṭhānaṃ.k āyasaṃpīḷanaṃ dukkhaṃ, ta ṃ domanassassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. cittasaṃpīḷanaṃ domanassaṃ, ta ṃ upāyāsassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. odahanakārako upāyāso, so bhavassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. imāni bhavaṅgāni yadā samaggāni nibbattāni bhavanti so bhavo, taṃ saṃsārassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. niyyānikalakkhaṇo maggo, so nirodhassa padaṭṭhānaṃ. 107 Yamabe Nobuyoshi pushes the physiological maintenance aspect of the concept of upādātṛ in the context of the early Yoga¯ca¯ra treatment of ālayavijñāna (Yamabe 2015). But I think it is a bit problematic to overemphasize this idea at the expense of the sense of “clinging” and “grasping” that is no doubt also entailed in the term, and which ties it to more traditional notions of the chain of dependent origination and

rebirth process. 108 For the classical Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da treatment of rebirth consciousness, see Msg I.34. This passage is translated in Waldron (2003, p. 141). The Saddhsu does not come close to engaging the kinds of detailed issues engaged by Asan ˙ga there. 109 On this sūtra, see fn. 4. 110 Yamabe also makes reference to Robert Kritzer’s very detailed work on the Garbhāvakrāntisūtra, the Sūtra on Entry into the Womb, a key early sūtra source on the process of gestation and human biology that was certainly known to the compilers of the Yogācārabhūmi attributed to Asan ˙ga (Kritzer 2013, 2014). There are definite affinities between the Garbhāvakrāntisūtra and the Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra, though they were clearly drawing on somewhat divergent traditions.


aggregates (五陰) or the consciousness (; *vijñāna) of a being at rebirth in the account of the Yogācārabhūmi of Saṅgharakṣa becomes the ālayavijñāna in the account of the Yogācārabhūmi attributed to Asan ˙ga (Yamabe 2013, pp. 602 and 648–653). These parallels are in some ways striking, but in terms of illuminating how the concept of ālayavijñāna emerged historically, they do not tell us much beyond the fact that one important aspect of the concept of ālayavijñāna is its role in the process of rebirth. Several passages from the *Kāyasmṛtyupasthānasūtra, which also have family resemblances to the passages cited by Yamabe, may

possibly provide an intermediate development. The following account appears at the very end of the *Kāyasmṛtyupasthānasūtra:111 “Further, that yoga practitioner observes the ripening of action dharmas.112 How do these beings appear upon the dissipation of good actions? Why does their realization not come about? It is because there is the suffering of birth113 even initially when there arises the seed of consciousness114 in the bangle-like womb—which is located in the lower region of the stomach—upon the presence of a mother and father’s semen and blood in the vaginal canal. Then, set in motion by the wind of karma, in seven days there is a transformation into an arbuda or soft embryonic mass. Because of abstaining from killing [in a past life], the consciousness dwelling in the arbuda does not perish. In an additional seven days, [the arbuda] becomes a ghana or viscous embryonic


111 ThistranslationisbasedprimarilyontheTibetantranslationofthetext,butitalsotakesintoaccountthe Chinese translation: gzhanyang rnal'byorsbyongpapa laskyi choskyi rnamparsmin pa la rjessu lta bar byed de | kye ma ji ltar na sems can 'di dag rnams kyis legs par byas pa'i las zad pa rjes su mthong ba yin | 'didagrnamskyimngonsumdumagyurpayinnamcena|jiltarskyeba'isdugbsngalnidangponyiddupha magnyiskyikhuchudangkhragdedaggnyiskyismistongpargyurpa'igcingyinangdugsuspa'ismadkyi ruspa'irangbzhingyirnampazhinggigdubkorltabu'imngaldurnamparshespa'isabonskye'o||deyang laskyirlunggisbusnodbskorbargyurpasnyimabdunpalamermerpor'gyurro||sroggcodpaspangspas mermerporgyurpadelagnaspanayangrnamparshespami'pho'o ||

nyimabdunpagzhanlanigorgor 'gyurro||rnamparshespayanglasdangnyonmongspadangbcaspa'idbanggisdenyidlarmongsnasgnas so || dela gnaspanyidkyangnyima bdunpayinte|nyimabdunnasha'igongbur'gyurro ||… (D no. 287, mdo sde, sha 212b6–213a3) 復次修行者隨順觀外身。觀此眾生。云何現見他善業盡而就死苦。云何不覺。初不生苦於受生 時,父母精血於尿道中, 識生受胎。業風所集, 和合動之七日一變, 名阿浮陀。阿浮陀中, 以於先世 不殺生故, 識心不滅不爛。第二七日,名伽那身。煩惱癡識,不壞不滅。如是七七日,名曰肉團… (T. 721, 17:412c15–412c21) 112 Note that the Chinese translation reads …隨順觀外: “…observes the external body.” The Chinese translators thus interpret this passage as a part of the body-oriented practice (kāyasmṛtyupasthāna) to which the larger sūtra is devoted. It is noteworthy, however, that there is no explicit reference to kāyasmṛtyupasthāna in the Tibetan translation. 113 The Chinese and Tibetan translations do not agree here. The Chinese has a puzzling negative

phrase (初不生苦), while the Tibetan takes the topic of the sentence to be the suffering of birth, without any sign of a negation (ji ltar skye ba'i sdug bsngal ni). I follow the Tibetan translation here, even though it represents some difficulties of interpretation. I have difficulty making sense of the Chinese. 114 The translation “seed of consciousness” is from the Tibetan rnam par shes pa'i sa bon, which, if reflecting a Sanskrit original, could be reconstructed as *vijñānabīja, though such a construction remains speculative. This raises questions about the connection of this description/theory of rebirth to the theory of rebirth of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯dins, for whom the ālayavijñāna is the carrier of all seeds (sarvabījaka) and the theory of rebirth of the so-called Sautra¯ntikas. On this connection in scholastic circles, see Park (2014).


mass. By the power of the conjunction of karma and defilement, that consciousness then dwells there in ignorance.115 It dwells there and there is a [nother] week, during which [the Ghana] becomes a ball of flesh (*peśī?)…” The text goes on to describe the gestation period of a fetus, and how it suffers in birth, in terms that largely accord with the accounts of both the Yogācārabhūmi attributed to Asan ˙ga and Yogācārabhūmi of Saṅgharakṣa, though in truncated form. However, the main point is not the parallelism with these texts, but rather the description of rebirth consciousness as a “seed of consciousness” (rnam par shes pa’i sa bon) precisely in the same context in which the ālayavijñāna is described as engaging in the process of rebirth.116 If this were the only instance of such a concept, we might write it off. However, the idea


comes up in another passage, earlier on, in an explicit meditation on the analogy between the process of seeds becoming fruit in the external world and the mind as a seed (or a purveyor of seeds?), seeding the development of the body:117 “How do yoga practitioners dwell?118 Monks, here yoga practitioners examine their very own bodies by way of external dharma[s] in the following way: After observing external dharmas, they dwell observing the body within their very own bodies. They first examine all of the seeds. From a seed a shoot emerges. From a shoot, a stalk emerges. From a stalk, a leaf emerges. From leaves, a flower emerges. From a flower, a fruit emerges. In the very same way, yoga practitioners look within themselves. First the seed of consciousness accompanied by karma and defilements falls upon semen. From semen a


115 The Chinese translation adds: 不壞不滅. 116 It is noteworthy that the Chinese translation contains no reference to a seed or seeds, but simply reads 識生受胎: “consciousness appropriates the embryo.” Since the term appears elsewhere in the Chinese translation, it is likely that this is simply a matter of the term being lost in translation, but this is not a certainty. 117 rnal 'byor spyod pa rnams ji ltar gnas pa yin zhe na | dge slong dag 'di na phyi rol gyi chos kyis rnal 'byor spyod pa rnams nang gi bdag nyid kyi lus la so sor rtog par byed do || 'di lta ste | phyi rol gyi chos rnams mthong nas nang gi bdag nyid kyi lus la lus kyi rjes su lta zhing gnas pa las dang po sa bon gyi tshogs rnams la so sor rtog par byed de | sa bon las ni myu gu 'byung ngo || myu gu las ni sdong bu 'byung ngo || sdong bu las ni 'dab ma 'byung ngo || 'dab ma rnams las ni me tog 'byung ngo || me tog las ni 'bras bu 'byung bar 'gyur ro || de kho na bzhin du rnal 'byor spyod pa ba rnams kyis nang gi bdag nyid rnams la yang mthong ba yin te | dang po sa bon du gyur pa'i rnam par shes pa las dang nyon mongs pa rnams dang bcas pa khu chur ltung ba yin no || khu chu las ni mer mer por 'gyur ro || mer mer po las nur nur por 'gyur ro || nur nur po las ni gorgor por 'gyur ro || gorgor po las ni nar nar por 'gyur ro || nar nar po las ni 'bur lnga 'byung bar 'gyur te | rkang pa'i 'bur 'bur gnyis dang | lag pa'i 'bur 'bur gnyis dang | mgo'i 'bur 'bur gcig go || de ltar 'bur 'bur lnga po rnams las ni dbang po rnams gsal bar skye bar 'gyur ro || de ltar snga phyi'i rim pas rga shi'i mthar thug par 'gyur ro || (D no. 287, mdo sde, sha 171b6–172a4) 云何修行觀內外身。所謂觀外法已, 觀於內身循身觀。觀察種子。如種生芽。從芽生莖。從莖 生葉。從葉生花。從花生實。是名外觀。復次修行者觀於內身。前識種子, 共業煩惱, 入不淨 中。名安浮陀。從安浮陀, 名歌羅囉。從歌羅囉,名曰伽那。從伽那時,名為肉摶。從於肉摶, 於五胞。所謂兩手兩足及頭。從於五胞, 生於五根。如是次第乃至老死。(T. 721, 17:398c10–18). 118 Here I follow the Tibetan translation, which makes no reference to the observation of the body. The Chinese translation reads 云何修行觀內外身: “How do yoga practitioners observe the body internally and externally?”


kalala or inceptive embryonic mass emerges.119 From a kalala, anarbuda or soft embryonic mass emerges. From an arbuda,aghana or viscous embryonic mass emerges. From a ghana, a ball of flesh (*peśī?) emerges. From a ball of flesh, five protrusions emerge: The two feet protrustions, the two hand protrustions, and one head protrusion. From the five protrusions, the five faculties appear. In this way, there is a succession [of biological development] ending in old age and death.” This passage shows an explicit engagement, in the context of meditation on the body, with a concept of a basic rebirth consciousness that functions as a seed for the gestation of the fetus and the development of a fully formed body. The two passages, taken together, indicate an incipient theory of seeds emergent in the context of meditation on the body, and almost certainly take for granted the foundational practices of the Saddhsu explored in the Section “Consciousness,

Feelings, and the Manodha¯tu” above. While I do not want to overemphasize the importance of these passages, and acknowledge that they do not provide a fully formed theory of seeds, I think they are worthy of attention. We should consider the possibility that material such as this, and traditions of practice deriving from such textual transmissions, may have influenced the development of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought and the early bīja theory of the Yogācārabhūmi attributed to Asan ˙ga.120 A passage that brings the traditional teaching of pratītyasamutpāda or dependent origination into conversation with the more concrete aspects of rebirth provides a conceptual bridge back to the concept of bhavāṅga consciousness. This passage can be found in another one of S ´akra’s teachings to the deities of his realm in the Saddhsu:121 [197a1]…“punar api, devā, asya sata idaṃ {na} bhavati122 | yaduta mātāpitroḥ śukraśonite sati, niyatopapattijañ ca karmmāvaśyaṃ garbhasaṃjananīyaṃ prati gandharvasya copādāne sati, upapattir bhavati | evam api, devā, asya123


119 There is confusion between the Chinese and Tibetan translations as to the succession of stages of development of a fetus. The Chinese reads: 前識種子, 共業煩惱, 入不淨中。名安浮陀。從安浮陀, 名歌羅囉。(“First the seed of consciousness, mingled with karma and defilements, enters the impure fluids. This is called the arbuda. From an arbuda [comes] what is called the kalala.”) In my English translation of this passage, I follow the Tibetan translation, which reads: khu chu las ni mer mer por 'gyur ro || mer mer po las nur nur por 'gyur ro || (“From the semen, a *kalala emerges. From a *kalala, an *arbuda emerges.”). The English translation must remain tentative, however, since both Tibetan mer mer po (*kalala?) and nur nur po (*arbuda?) are used as translations for both terms. 120 In

trying to get at the problem of sorting out the relationship of a theory of seeds and the development of the concept of ālayavijñāna, Robert Kritzer writes: “…we search in vain for any text earlier than the Yogācārabhūmi [attributed to Asan ˙ga] containing ideas such as saṃtati pariṇāmaviśeṣa or the mutual seeding of body and mind, according to which mind contains the seeds of the physical sense organs, and vice versa” (Kritzer 2005, pp. xxix–xxx). While the passages discussed here do not present such concepts in the scholastic language to which Kritzer refers, and it remains a question how far we can push back the date of the Saddhsu, they nonetheless suggest affinities that may have elementally conditioned such concepts among early Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thinkers. 121 Ms 197a1–3 [T. 721, 17:171a24–29; D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 193b1–5]. 122 asya sata idaṃ bhavati ] em.; asya sata idaṃ na bhavati Ms; 是事有故是事有 T; 'di yod na 'di 'byung ba ni D. 123 devā asya ] corr.; devāsya Ms.


sata idaṃ bhavati | kasyāsataḥ kin na bhavati | yaduta mātāpitror asati, śukraśoṇitasya cāsati, niyatasamvedanīyasya ca [197a2] karmmaṇo ‹’›sati, na bhavati {|} garbhasyo‹pā›dānapūrvako124 bhavati ‹|› evam api, devā, asya125 sata idaṃ bhavaty, asyāsata idaṃ na bhavati | yaduta pāre saty apāram bhavati |{tasyāsataḥ} kim vinā kin na bhavati |126 yaduta pāram vinā ’pāraṃ na bhavaty ‹|› evam api, devā, asya127 sata idaṃ bhavati | evam anyonyapratyayasahīyam upādāya prajñaptir bhavati | anyonyapratyayasahīyaṃ sarvasaṃskṛtam utpadyate, pratītyasamutpannaṃ pratītya samutpadya\[197a3]te | yaduta avidyāpratyayā‹ḥ›128 saṃskārāḥ saṃskārapratyayaṃ vijñānaṃ vijñānam vā vistareṇāvagantavyaṃ |”


“Further, deities, because of the existence of that, this comes into being. For instance, when there exists the [combined] semen and blood of a mother and father and there exists the clinging of a gandharva or rebirth entity (antarābhava?) with respect to a karma that is certain to produce rebirth and necessarily entails the production of an embryo, then rebirth comes about. In this way, deities, because of the existence of that, this comes into being. Because of the non-existence of what, what does not come into being? For instance, when there is the non-existence of a mother and a father, the nonexistence of semen and blood, and the non-existence of a karma that is certain to be experienced, then there does not come into being that which accompanies the clinging to the embryo. In

this way also, deities, from the existence of that, this comes into being; from the non-existence of that, this does not come into being. For instance, when the opposite shore exists, this shore comes into being. Because of the non-existence of that, without what, what does not come into being? For example, without the opposite shore, this shore does not come into existence. In this way, deities, because of the existence of that, this comes into being. Thus, a

concept/designation comes into being with the assistance of mutually dependent accompanying conditions. All that is composite emerges as mutually dependent accompanying conditions. What is dependently arisen arises in dependence. That is: karmic constructions are dependent on ignorance; consciousness is dependent on karmic constructions; or consciousness is to be considered in detail.” The text here mentions the clinging (upādāna) of a rebirth entity at the time of sexual intercourse of the parents, which must be associated with a concomitant karmic force for rebirth to take place. “That which accompanies the clinging to the 124 garbhasyopādānapūrvako ] em.; garbhasyodānapūrvako Ms; 無藏無中陰 T; mngal du nye bar len pa sngon du 'gro ba D. 125 devā asya ] corr.; devāsya Ms. 126 kim vinā kin na bhavati ] tasyāsataḥ kim vinā kin na bhavati Ms; n. e. T; gang zhig med cing ci zhig mi 'byung zhe na D. 127 devā asya ] corr.; devāsya Ms. 128 avidyāpratyayāḥ ] corr.; avidyā#pratyayā Ms.


embryo” (garbhasyopādānapūrvaka), in turn, may refer to the gandharva or antarābhava but also may be a designation for consciousness at the time of birth.129 The passage thus frames rebirth in the context of the process of dependent origination and presents a seemingly nominalistic interpretation of the dependently arisen processes of saṃsāra. That is, dependent origination, as a general account of saṃsāra and as a specific account of the process of rebirth, is a conventional designation (prajñapti), a composite concept built upon composite interdependent processes. This is a traditional interpretation of dependent origination, though it pushes into philosophical territory that begins to look a bit like Madhyamaka thought. In light of the thought frameworks presented throughout the first part

of the text discussed in the initial two sections of the article and the incipient theories of consciousness as seed and bhavāṅga or continuum consciousness in the passages above, this passage indicates how the compilers of the Saddhsu were reworking a wide range of traditional materials in the context of contemplative-scholastic life. When all these pieces are taken into account, the affinities with the practical and philosophical dynamics of early and late Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da problematics cannot be denied. Toreturnnowinafullcircletotheconceptofbhavāṅga,Ipresentonefinalinstance of the Saddhsu’s use of the term in the rebirth process, this time in a description of the fourteenth intermediary consciousness in the list of seventeen discussed above:130 “punar apy [abhy]avakāśam131 

ā⊗pannaḥ {|} upapattirbhavasya ‹|› śrṇoti {|} vīṇāpaṇavaveṇugītadhvanīn132 ‹|› prahṛ[ṣya]ti cāsya133 man[aḥ] ‹|› anekābhir var[ṣ]akoṭibhir134 [227a5] na bhūtaṃ sarvataś ca saumyāni nimittāni prādurbhavanti | mitrasvajanabāndha[va]gatam ivātmānaṃ manyate, ’tīva prahṛṣyate | ⊗ muhurmuhur yathāyathopa[[[patti]]]rbhavasyāntikam upaite | sa135 imam vā[ny]am vā cāturmahārājikadevanikāyam anuprā[pta]ḥ136 paśyate {|} yānī⊗māni vanopavanāni ramaṇīyatarāṇi, [su]gandhitarāṇi [padm]āni137 ca saptaratna[ma]yāni, s[tr]iya[ś ca]138 svabhāvamanoharāṇi [227a6] rūpāṇi ‹|› tasyaivam139 bhavati:‘apīdānīm aham atropapadyeyaṃ | prāpayeyam vā |’ sa [sa]hacittotpādād140 evotpadyate | bhavāṅgasyopakramo yaduta upādānapratyayo bhavaḥ |”


129 The Chinese translators took it to refer to the antarābhava (中陰), unless they had a different reading, which I find unlikely. 130 Saddhsu Ms 227a4–6 [T. 721, 17:200c3–10; D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 264a7–b3]. 131 [abhy]avakāśam ] Ms; srid pa bar mar D; 如是中陰 。聞當生處 。T. 132 ˚dhvanīn ] corr.;˚dhvanī Ms. 133 cāsya ] corr.; cāsyā Ms. 134 anekābhir varṣakoṭibhir ] corr./punct.; nekābhir var[ṣ]akoṭibhi Ms. 135 sa ] em.; sā Ms. 136 anuprāptaḥ ] em.; anuprā[ptā] Ms. 137 [padm]āni ] Ms (?); rin po che sna bdun gyi tshal dang D; 七寶蓮花 T. 138 Read strīnāṃ ca?. 139 tasyaivaṃ ] em.; tamaivam bhavati Ms. 140 sahacittotpādād ] em.; [sa]hotpādād Ms.



“Further, he enters into the open expanse of rebirth consciousness. He hears the sounds of vīṇās, drums, flutes, and singing, and his mind becomes thrilled. Everywhere fabricated lovely signs appear in an abundant shower.141 He conceivesofhimselfastogetherwithfriends,family,andrelatives,andbecomes elated. From one moment into the next in succession, he approaches the rebirth consciousness. Arriving at one or another community of the Deities of the Four Great Kings, he sees groves and gardens that are more than delightful, sweetsmelling lotus ponds fashioned out of seven kinds of jewels, and the naturally attractive figures of women. He thinks: ‘Indeed, I should be born here or reach [it].’ Immediately upon the arising of that mental state, he is reborn [among the Deities of the Four Great Kings]. This is the succession of the continuum consciousness, namely: Existence (bhava) depends upon clinging (upādāna).”


This passage provides some more detail about the temporal succession between intermediary consciousness and rebirth consciousness. It appears in most of these descriptions that the conception of the antarābhava or bhavāntara is a momentary one and does not involve the traditional interval(s) of seven days that some traditions posit. But we are limited in what we can say about such issues, since the Saddhsu does not treat this question systematically or attempt to present arguments for the validity of its scholastic categories. Rather, at least here in the sixth chapter, the text simply presents this series of intermediary consciousnesses. But I would emphasize once again that we should not read these passages in isolation. What the combined weight of the material presented

throughout this paper suggests is that the Saddhsu seems to present an intermediate textual, contemplative, and scholastic context. It reaches back to early sūtra and Abhidharma tradition, but also pushes forward in ways that connect to developments of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought and emerge in literary contexts that derive from explicit traditions of meditative practice. We might think of much of the material presented in the Saddhsu as archaic yogācāra doctrinal and practical frames of reference. While the connections between the Saddhsu and many of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da śāstras are not direct, many of the concerns of these two textual traditions overlap, as do their historical contexts. The bhavāṅga of the Saddhsu is certainly comparable to the bhavaṅga of the Therava¯dins, and it may in fact be related to the concept of the “aggregate that persists throughout saṃsāra”(ji srid pa’i phung po rnams; 乃至世間陰不斷; 窮生 死陰; 窮生死蘊) of the Mahı¯s ´a¯sakas. It likewise correlates well with many of the general defining aspects of the ālayavijñāna—if not in the s ´a¯stric details—and supporting material in parts of the Saddhsu not explicitly devoted to discussing the bhavāṅga encourages us to consider the broader implications of the

concept. Might the Saddhsu present a tradition from the Northwest of India, a different strand of which scholars such as Asan ˙ga and Vasubandu were aware of? Since it is difficult to see any direct textual connections, such a question will likely remain unanswered. But it is a question worth asking. And I wonder if the predilection for s ´a¯stric details and categories that haunts the study of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da tradition may in 141 I remain uncertain that I properly understand the phrase anekābhir var[ṣ]akoṭibhir here.


fact lead scholars away from more basic foundational dynamics that give rise to such categories. These cross-tradition foundational dynamics lead to new conceptions of the mind, materiality, and the cosmos, but often do not get codified in specific s ´a¯stric concepts until very late moments of development.142 The Saddhsu may be a key proto-s ´a¯stric source for getting a glimpse of these foundational dynamics in the context of early yoga practitioners in Greater Gandha¯ra. To take this idea of the importance of broad foundational dynamics even further, we might playfully participate with Asan ˙ga in some speculative reflection on the early Buddhist tradition. A unique short sutta in the Aṅguttaranikāya of the Pa¯li canon, which has no parallels in other canonical or post-canonical texts as far as I am aware, lists ten dharmas that “reside in the body.” The Buddha, as he is presented to us in the Pa¯li, describes them as

follows:143 “Monks, there are ten dharmas that reside in the body.144 What are the ten? Cold, heat, hunger, thirst, excrement, urine, bodily restraint, vocal restraint, restraint of livelihood, and the urge to existence145 that brings about rebirth. These, monks, are the ten dharmas that reside in the body.” Do we find here, in the concept of “the urge to existence” (bhavasaṅkhāra), a prototype of the Saddhsu bhavāṅga or the Pa¯li bhavaṅga? Does the developed concept of ālayavijñāna, which has the characteristic of “adhering in the body” (kāyālīnatā),146 find such a referent in early tradition? Such questions may seem

historically promiscuous, but they remain relevant, particularly when engaging texts such as the Saddhsu, which are fundamentally oriented to issues of meditative experience rather than s ´a¯stric precision. While I think Asan ˙ga is likewise intellectually promiscuous in his own way when he invokes the prospect of Maha¯ya¯nistic omniscience as what allows for the proper discernment and acceptance of new categories of the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da tradition such as the ālayavijñāna,147 I nonetheless identify with his urge to see a common core of


142 Yamabe Nobuyoshi suggests something like this happening among the groups who compiled the Yogācārabhūmi attributed to Asan ˙ga. See Yamabe (2012) (as discussed in Schmithausen 2014) and his paper in the present collection of articles. I think that Yamabe’s insightful analysis might become more complete by taking into account the traditional practices of vedanā observation that emerge from the *Saḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra, are developed in and foundational to the Saddhsu, and are likewise taken for granted in the *Kāyasmṛtyupasthānasūtra transmitted as part of the Saddhsu. See the sections “Introduction” and “The

Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra” above. 143 AN 10.49 at AN V 88: dasa-y-ime, bhikkhave, dhammā sarīraṭṭhā. katame dasa? sītaṃ,u ṇhaṃ, jighacchā, pipāsā, uccāro, passāvo, kāyasaṃvaro, vacīsaṃvaro, ājīvasaṃvaro, ponobbhaviko bhavasaṅkhāro. ime kho, bhikkhave, dasa dhammā sarīraṭṭhā ti. 144 Bhikkhu Bodhi (2012: 1399) translates sarīraṭṭha as “subsisting through the body.” 145 Bhikkhu Bodhi (2012: 1399) translates bhavasaṅkhāra as “formative activity of existence.” 146 PSk 17. 147 Msg I.10. As an interesting counterpart to this notion within the Therava¯da tradition, cf. Ledi Sayadaw’s Anudīpanīpāṭha (Be 304–05): “It is stated in the

commentaries that ‘bodhisattvas practicing for omniscience, having gone forth in the dispensation of past Buddhas, carrying out the work of insight meditation, having come up against the insight knowledge of conformity, avoid [it].’ In this regard, ‘having come up against’ is to be understood as referring to the goal of experiencing the attainment of the pinnacle of the insight knowledge of equanimity towards mental constructions.” (sabbaññubodhisattā pana pubbabuddhānaṃ sāsane pabbajitvā, vipassanākammaṃ ārabhantā anulomaññāṇaṃ āhacca


tradition and experience behind many of the more developed s ´a¯stric categories, concepts, and debates. The Saddhsu is a particularly useful source in this regard because it is explicitly, and without a doubt, a text about meditative practice and experience.148 It likewise draws directly on a wide range of traditional materials to construct its picture of human reality, the cosmos, and the mind, thereby providing source material that can bridge early canonical

tradition with later s ´a¯stric developments. To conclude this section on bhavāṅga, I present here one additional passage from the text’s treatment of intermediary states. This passage, which appears in a description of the fifteenth intermediary consciousness, ties the Saddhsu’s treatment of rebirth back to an aspect of its theory of mind that we touched on earlier in our discussion of the mind-matter interaction problematic. Describing the rebirth moment, the text returns to the simile of the seal and its impression: 149 “[tasmin] kāle ’ntarābhavikaṃ vijñānaṃ nirudhyate | 150 upapattirbhav[i]kam vijñānam bhavati |

sama[na]ntarapratyayatāṃ151 prati pratimudrāsadṛśaṃ vijñānam upapadyate | eva‹ṃ› manusyebhya eva152 cyuto manuṣyeṣv evo[227b3]papannasya lakṣaṇam bhavati ||” “At that time, the intermediary existence consciousness ceases, and the rebirth existence consciousness comes into being. In dependence on the state of an antecedent condition, [[[phenomenal]]] consciousness, like the impression of a seal, appears. Such is the characteristic of one who dies as a man and is reborn among men.”


The restatement of this emergentist simile, in connection with a theory of rebirth consciousness, allows us to return to the more expansive and graduated theory of mind presented in the second chapter of the text. In doing so, we might reflect on the great diversity of material that this excursion into the Saddhsu has afforded us a glimpse of, all of which cannot be properly understood outside of the text’s theory of mind. The question of how phenomenal consciousness—and the realities of the world of human experience—emerges from more basic forms of consciousness is at the heart of the meditation practices of the Saddhsu. The text’s visionary meditations on the process of karma are an elaboration of this basic question.


Footnote 147 continued ṭhapentī ti aṭṭhakathāsu vuttaṃ. tattha “āhaccā” ti idaṃ saṅkhārupekkhāñāṇassa matthakapattidassanatthaṃ vuttan ti daṭṭhabbaṃ.) This passage is of interest since the practice of “the insight knowledge of equanimity towards mental constructions” (saṅkhārupekkhā) has the same phenomenological referent as the ālayavijñāna does. See Sthiramati’s treatment of the feeling aggregate in connection with the ālayavijñāna mentioned above. 148 It provides, therefore, a useful and fairly early data set that counters those who question the usefulness of “experience” as an analytical category for the study of Buddhist tradition and Religious Studies more broadly. 149 Saddhsu Ms 227b2–3 [T. 721, 17:200c26–28; D no. 287, mdo sde, ra 265a2–3]. 150 om. ] em.; sadṛśa Ms; om. D T. 151 samanantarapratyayatāṃ ] em.; sama[nva]ntarapratyayatāṃ Ms ( ?); de ma thag pa'i rkyen gyis D; 次第緣生 T. 152 eva ] corr.; evaś Ms.


Conclusion


I have presented a wide range of textual material here in very broad strokes. Many of the details, therefore, have been glossed over or ignored. There is much work left to be done on the Saddhsu, and it remains surprising that so few have paid attention to this important source of data on middle period yogācāra practice and thought from the Northwest of India. Lin Li-Kouang’s seminal study of the Chinese translation of the Saddhsu laid important early foundations, but few have followed up on his phenomenal work. Now, with the recovery of a fragmentary Sanskrit manuscript of the text, we are in a position to begin looking into this source in greater depth. The material I present here highlights the ways that textual material from the Saddhsu might fit into the larger fabric of the scholastic and contemplative cultures of middle period Indian Buddhism. While the Saddhsu represents an independent tradition, outside of the scholastic

mainstream, it nonetheless provides a useful phenomenological counterpoint to some of the better-known scholastic traditions of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da thought. I have shown here how the Saddhsu develops a theory of mind out of the basic thought framework presented in the *Ṣaḍdhātuvibhaṅgasūtra. In a reworking of this early text, the Saddhsu raises questions about the ontological status of sense objects, the fundamental relationship between the internal and the external, and pushes towards a more expansive theory of mind in which the unavoidable arising of a world of experience—the play of phenomenal consciousness—must nonetheless be enacted skillfully within the framework of traditional Buddhist categories. Such categories also get transvalued in certain ways, however, and this process can be seen when the traditional category of illusion (māyā) takes on a life beyond its traditional Abhidharma context. As a result of a textual

alteration, the world of sense experience (dvādaśāyatanāḥ) comes to be associated with illusion. This doctrinal shift allows for an illusionistic theory of consciousness to emerge in the text. Finally, the Saddhsu’s theory of mind cannot be separated from a system of karma and karmic ripening, and the key technical term bhavāṅga or ‘continuum consciousness’ gets employed to work through issues of continuity in the process of rebirth. All of these elements of the text mirror key practical and philosophical dynamics that later become central to Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da theoretics. To find all of these elements in a single text—and a yogācārabhūmi predating the inception of Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da tradition at that—indicates that scholars should take the Saddhsu seriously as a possible source of practical and doctrinal substrata for the school of thought known today as the Yoga¯ca¯ra-vijn ˜a¯nava¯da.


Acknowledgments I am grateful to Mari Jyva ¨sja ¨rvi Stuart for reading through an earlier draft of this article and making many valuable suggestions. I also gratefully acknowledge the helpful comments of Jowita Kramer. I would also like to thank Nobuyoshi Yamabe and Lata Deokar for suggestions about specific passages in Chinese and Tibetan translation. Two anonymous reviewers also provided some helpful suggestions. Finally, I thank Constanze Pabst von Ohain and Marco Walther for inviting me to participate in the workshop Yogācāra Buddhism in Context, from which the article emerged.


Abbreviations and Sigla Akbh Abhidharmakośabhāṣya (Pradhan, ed. 1975 [1967]) Bcrit A Critical Edition of the Tibetan Translation of the Second Chapter of the Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra (Stuart 2015a, Vol. II, Appendix 2) Be Burmese edition of the Pa¯li canon (Chaṭṭha Saṅgāyana CD-ROM from Dhammagiri, Version 3) corr. Corrected D Derge Edition of the Tibetan Tripit ˙ aka, published by the Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center 2002 (based on a scanning of the photomechanical reprint of the par phud printing published in Delhi by Karmapae chodhey gyalwae sungrab partun khang, 1976–79). em. emended Mahāvibhāṣā T. 1545:

2013) punct. Punctuated Prap Prasannapadā (La Valle ´e Poussin, ed. 1903–1913) Q Peking Edition of the Tibetan Tripit ˙ aka, kept in the Library of the Otani University, Kyoto, edited by D.T. Suzuki, Tokyo: Tibetan Tripitaka Research Institute, 1955–1958 Saddhsu Saddharmasmṛtyupasthānasūtra SA ¯ Saṃyuktāgama (Taisho¯ no. 99) S ´iks ˙ Śikṣāsamuccaya (Bendall, ed. 1970 [1897]) SN Saṃyuttanikāya Sbhv Saṅghabhedavastu (Gnoli and Venkatacharya, eds. 1977–8) S ´rbh Je Śrāvakabhūmi (S ´ra¯vakabhu ¯mi Study Group, ed. 1998 and 2007) T. Taisho ¯ {…} Elided by the editor ‹…› Added by the editor […] Unclear in Ms ⊗ Stands for a string hole in Ms


] A lemma marking off a chosen reading from actual readings in the textual witnesses

References to Pāli texts are to Pali Text Society editions unless otherwise noted. References to the Taishō edition of the Chinese Buddhist canon are to the CBETA 電 子佛典集成光碟 2011 version. I regularly repunctuate both PTS, Be, and Taishō texts.


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