Prompted & Unprompted

Posted: September 24, 2006 in Buddhism

Recently, I had a little chat with another Buddhist regarding Abhidhamma. It is related with the word: “ansankharika” (Pali), the proper translation is to be “Unprompted” or “not-instigated”.

A little background to the usage of this term in Abhidhamma:

Within Abhidhamma, consciousness (cita in Pali) is being classified into various groups. The total numbers of consciousness is either 89 or 121 (depend on how the classification is being done). Among these consciousness, there are a few that is associated with the term “prompted” or “unprompted”. If a consciousness is prompted, this implied, it arise premeditated. Conversely, if a consciousness is unprompted, then it arise spontaneously. In a more non-Buddhist term, it simply mean, a thought or an intention was arise premeditated, while another thought or intention was arise spontaneously.

This little chat happened, because, this Buddhist, started to imply “unprompted” is synonymous as “unintentional” – which by reading the above description, it is an inaccurate representation. Here, “prompted” or “unprompted” is simply an attribute of an intention, it is not an intention in its own right. Thus, I begin my email to him, in an attempt to correct this mistake.

Continue here…

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