They are defined as aspects of the mind that apprehend the quality of an object, and that have the ability to color the mind. Within the Abhidhamma, the mental factors are categorized as formations Sanskrit : samskara concurrent with mind Sanskrit : citta. Mental factors are aspects of the mind that apprehend the quality of an object and have the ability to color the mind. Geshe Tashi Tsering explains:.
What Are Mental Formations?
We have seeds of anger, despair, discrimination, fear, mindfulness, compassion, love, understanding, and so on in our basement storehouse. Store consciousness is made up of the totality of these seeds, and it is also the soil that maintains and nurtures all these seeds. The seeds stay there until we hear, see, read, or think of something that touches a seed, which then sprouts up as reactive anger, joy, sorrow, etc. Now we no longer call it a seed but a mental formation. A table and a house are physical formations.
Podcast: Download Duration: — This is the second talk on May 6, and the talk in offered in English. We begin with a teaching on mental formations and the roots of our ill-being before moving toward the Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eightfold Path. A Buddhist technical term. Means formation. Physical, biological, and mental. What is a formation? Recognizing that all formations are impermanent. When we observe a formation, we should be able to see this impermanent nature. In the Plum Village tradition, we talk of 51 mental formations.
The word means 'formations'  or 'that which has been put together' and 'that which puts together'. According to the Vijnanavada school ,  there are 51 samskaras or mental factors. It is a complex concept, with no single-word English translation, that fuses "object and subject" as interdependent parts of each human's consciousness and epistemological process. Since conditioned things and dispositions are perceptions and do not have real essence, they are not reliable sources of pleasure and they are impermanent. The end of conditioned arising or dependent origination in the karmic sense Sankharas , yields the unconditioned phenomenon of nirvana. The Buddha elaborated:.