Concepts I - One lives in the world of conventional truth

Paramattha dhammas are realities; they are not beings, people, or self. The paramattha dhammas that arise are only citta, cetasika, and rupa, each of which has its own characteristics, its own nature. They arise because of conditions and then they fall away again very rapidly. If one does not know the characteristics of citta, cetasika and rupa, the paramattha dhammas that arise, fall away and succeed one another very rapidly, one knows just concepts. One takes rupa and nama, which arise and fall away in succession, for things that are lasting. Thus, one lives in the world of conventional truth (sammutti sacca). When realities appear, one clings to shape and form, to a “whole,” one takes fleeting realities for things that exist.
However, when one has studied paramattha dhammas and knows how to develop panna (wisdom), there can be awareness of the characteristics that appear and panna can become keener. Then the stage of insight can be reached which is the clear understanding of realities that arise and fall away at this moment. One will clearly see that there is no being, person or self. One will know that there are only paramattha dhammas appearing one at a time. This is in accordance with the truth that the Buddha realised at his enlightenment and which he taught to others.
Ignorance is deeply rooted and very persistent. It conditions us to cling to conventional truth and to take realities for things, beings, and people. From the moment of rebirth-consciousness there are nama and rupa which arise and fall away, succeeding one another all the time. When we leave our mother’s womb and enter this world we experience the sense objects that appear through the six doors. We see, hear, smell, taste, and experience cold and heat through the bodysense. We do not know that what appears through the eyes is only a kind of reality that can be seen (visible object).

Topic 288