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Abhidhamma recognizes citta as one of the 5-fold cosmic orders

(Pabcaniyamadhamma), i.e. citta niyama, psychic order. According to Buddhaghosa


views, when an object strikes the sentient organism each according to its own nature
related psychic functioning start to work, such as seeing, receiving, examining,
determining, and cognizing etc. all these is understood as the psychic order.
Abhidhamma philosophers divide citta under 4 broad classes with accord to its
functioning which corresponds to the 4 spheres:
1. Kamavacara (sensuous)
2. Rupavacara that with for
3. Arupavacara that with formless
4. Lokuttara the transcendental
There are 3 planes of existence: that is, Sensuous Sphere (Kamavacaraloka), Form
Sphere (Rupavacaraloka), Formless Sphere (Arupavacaraloka), the 4 states of
misery (Apaya), Human Realm (Manussaloka), and the six celestial realms
(Devaloka) constituting the sphere called Kamaloka. All the cittas pertaining to
sensuous spheres are called Kamavacara cittas. They are 54 in number. Cittas which
are pertaining to Forms Sphere are called Rupavacara Citta. They are 15 in number.
Cittas pertaining to formless spheres are called Arupavacara which are 12 in number.
Finally, Cittas which arise pertaining to supramundane are called Lokuttaracita. They
are 8 in number. In later period, Abhidhammikas analyzing the concept of citta further
introduced a new theory called The Theory of Moments (KANAVADA). According to
them thought process (cittaviti) consists of 17 thought-moments. Each of these
thought moments consist of 3 point instance: namely: nascence uppada arising,
persistence thiti, and cessation bhabga. The duration of thought moment is so brief
that the rate of change in thought has been determined specially relative to the rate of
change in matter. That is as many as 16 thought moments arise and perish during the
period that matter endure.

Vibbana
The word vibbana is commonly translated by consciousness. It is one of the most
difficult words found in the texts. Because it is used in more senses. The word is not
used only in the field of psychology, but also used commonly in the filed of
metaphysics. IN the field of psychology the term represents different functions of the

mind. We already understood that though the terms cita, mano, vibbana are
employed to connote the entire complex of consciousness each word signifies
different dimension of the same general complex of consciousness. It is a clear factor
that when we confine ourselves to turn vibbana which represents different functions
of the same general complex of mind has been used to signify different stage of the
same mind. Therefore, it is a multi significant term. This condition opens a great
controversy regarding its exact meaning. According to scholars there are many stance
of meaning can be attributed to the word vibbana. Firstly, it works as a sort of
anoetic consciousness. At this stage vibbana is free from differences. The vibbana
does not admit any alternative or is not wavering. vibbana knows that something is
representing, but vibbana is not sure about the object. At this stage vibbana
perceives something but it does not perceive details. VIJANATI VIJANATI TI KHO
AVUSO TASMA VIBBANANTI VUCCATI, knowing, Oh monks, therefore it is
called vibbana. Here vibbana knows only that there is some object presenting in the
mind. It knows the object without any details. In this stage there is no attention. A
mere voluntary direction towards the object is there. This act of vibbana only begins
to operate after a stimuli entered through the sense-door. It has a direct relationship
with the sense, and its respective object. It is clear that an object can exist separately
without vibbana; but without vibbana there will not be any knowledge that there is
an object. This knowledge is represents of an object CAKKHUBCA PATICCA RUPE
CA UPPAJJATI CAKKHUVIBBANAM depending on eye and form visual
consciousness arises. To have this knowledge of related object according to Buddhism
there should be 2 factors: the sense and the related object (DVAYAM BHIKKHAVE
PATICCA VIBBANO SAMBHOTI, depending on two things there arises
consciousness). The same passage is repeated starting from other sense fields.
According to the sutta 6 kinds of consciousness vibbanas are mentioned: Visual
Consciousness (Cakkhuvibbana) which arises depending on eye and form, Auditory
Consciousness (sotavibbana) which arises depending on ear and sound, Olfactory
Consciousness (ghanavibbana) which arises depending on nose and smells,
Gustatory Consciousness (jivhavibbana) which arise depending on tongue and taste,
Bodily Consciousness (kayavibbana) which arises depending on body and touch,
Mental Consciousness (manovibbana) which arises depending on mind and
dhamma.