Purejata Paccaya, Pacchājāta Paccaya

Purejāta-Pacchājāta Paccaya – Condition of Latency and Manifestation

The condition wherein things, material or immaterial, exist rather as a potential, without actually being manifest, is what is called a condition of latency. It is the condition of mental or material phenomena existing in germ form (the term Purejata literally means pre-nascence).
While anything (any phenomena) that already is in existence exists in the condition of manifestation (literally post-nascence).

These two make up one pair.

In relation to the four elements, stands the earth element for manifestation, while the element of water is the proper symbol for the condition of latency. The fire element in turn, will then mean the ending of manifestation, and the wind element can be regarded as the element symbolising the moving out of latency.

The whole visible universe, or from the individual perspective, all the things that the five senses are continuously contacting, are things that are in the condition of manifestation. Equally so is the whole duration of a persons life from birth to death, with all that happens within that space of time, one example of the condition of manifestation. Latency on the other hand is rather something hidden and more difficult to grasp. Yet these two conditions are not entirely separate.

In fact we may learn much, if we learn to comprehend the relationship between latency and manifestation. This is, in fact, one secret magic key to the accomplishment of much in the realm of manifestation. One simple example to begin with, which should at the same time serve as a useful image in the readers mind, is the process of winning salt, a quite valuable resource, from the waters of the sea, wherein it is abundant, but wherein it is not at all considered as valuable or useful. This is one simple process of making what may be regarded as latent, manifest.

In relation to the health of the physical body, these two conditions in reference to the four elements show us a, especially for the meditator perhaps more relevant fact. There we find, that all solid foods, when taken into the mouth, will at first be evidently predominantly earth element. That will be the element that is most manifest. But, once they react with the digestive juices, certain other, that is, latent qualities start to become evident, either immediately, or after some time. Accordingly, will a root like ginger, when eaten, quickly show forth qualities belonging to the fire element. Algae derived foods, often, even when taken in dried or powdered form, will be felt within as manifesting qualities belonging to the element water. While foods like garlic or onion may show forth qualities of the air or wind element. All qualities that exist before their manifest appearance latently within the herb, or food, or medicine.

From an outer perspective, the whole of life exists in the condition of manifestation. But from an inner perspective, one half of life is actually a journey of gradually bringing into manifestation things which lie latent within a beings life, or more accurately, within a beings life-continuum; while, after the peak of life has been reached, with the appearance of ageing and decay, a second half of life sets in, which is rather a journey of gradually moving back from manifest life towards a condition of latency.

One is the nurturing and bringing into fruition, kammical seeds that have been planted in previous lives; which for some time remained content to linger only in latency, but of which many a one, sooner, or later develops some longing to become manifest. The other is the gradual digestion of the fruits of the labour of a life; and the laying down into the earth, the seeds that were contained in those fruits.

But then, what does it actually mean, that something is manifest? What does it mean that something is latent?

Something being manifest means, that it is restricted by certain laws of manifestation. It is limited, it has a definite duration, it exists in dependence and in relations to myriad other things manifest. Something being in the condition of latency on the other hand means, that it, as such does not possess duration or limitation, while it possesses an principally infinite amount of potential for manifestation.

As from the root of a plant or tree, however much of it’s outgrowth has been chopped off; again and again may grow a plant or tree as big or bigger still as the former one; so it is also with mental and bodily phenomena; whenever there is suitable soil for their arising, they may become manifest. And whenever what is manifest, dies and perishes; as long as it’s root is not entirely destroyed, a new phenomenon, which concretely will mean, a new faculty, weakness or capacity, or a new emotion, or thought, may grow again from their condition of latency.

Latent mental phenomena are especially those thoughts or emotions or dreams, that are not manifestly present in consciousness, but which exists as potentials within the life-continuum. You may not be always angry and you may not be always wise, but if the potential for anger or wisdom exists in you, at any given moment these states of mind may become manifest within you.

Still, even something that is manifest in relation to consciousness, may yet be regarded as something that is rather unmanifest in relation to the material world. From that point of view will all mental phenomena be somewhat unmanifest. And the least something is manifest, the more potential may be attributed to it. If we agree to that supposition, as the phenomenon that may be regarded as least manifest is perhaps the idea, the idea will also be the phenomenon that possesses the largest spectrum of possibilities for manifestation. The bearing of which will be shown below.

Nevertheless, whatever exists in the condition of latency, or whatever exists only in non-manifest form, exists only as a potential whose definite mode of manifestation will still depend on the material in which it will finally come into manifestation. And so is a thought, intention, or idea, however grand, when seeking manifestation in the material world, always hindered by the material in which it seeks to manifest.

Many a one has great dreams and hopes and aspirations. But when he seeks to bring them into manifestation, he finds himself restricted by an infinite amount of things. A child seeing a Superman movie, promptly wants to be like Superman and in little time, even believes that it can become Superman in no time at all, just by strongly wishing for it. Many an ordained monk too, hopes for superhuman attainments, yet, when facing the manifest world, finds himself constrained on every side and does not understand how to make use of the things manifest to get closer to the fulfilment of his manifesting dreams.

So is there then any magic key for making one’s dreams and better ideas manifest?

Yes, there is. One key comes through an understanding of how the mind inherently turns material things into mental things. How through observation of things manifest, the mind creates ideas of them (that is, it brings them into the world of the unmanifest). And how the ideas of the mind then again initiate actions in the sphere of the manifest.

Accordingly, if the mind learns to observe not only the manifest world, but equally observes and creates ideas of the world of its dreams and hopes within, and then also creates ideas that connect the two worlds; it will come thereby into a position to initiate actions in the sphere of the manifest which are informed by both worlds. That is, by the world of the manifest and by the world seeking manifestation. Which will be one of myriad possible practical applications of the understanding of the conditions of manifestation and latency.


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