How do I notice mental vedana?


Yes, that’s it, but, subtle.


Solve a mental (e.g., math) puzzle. There is a feeling of delight that leads one to seek more puzzles. E.g., “what is the fifth prime?”

I have a tendency to get caught up in puzzles, so I am working on restraining this mental feeling.


I don’t think the delight is vedana though.


I use delight as a synonym for pleasant feeling.

“Reverend, there are three feelings.
What three?
Pleasant, painful, and neutral feeling.

Bhante Sujato prefers “relishing is the root of suffering” in MN1, but when I first read MN1, it was by Ven. Bodhi as “delight is the root of suffering”. The use of delight was very helpful to me as I read it as “pleasant feeling”.


I just checked the Pali for that relishing phrase in MN1, but there is no reference to “vedana”.
The word used is “nandi”.


If nandi or delight was then focused on, it would become the object from which consciousness arises again. Then the vedana would be emotional tone of the delight (relishing).


I’m not sure how delight (nandi) relates to pleasant vedana and craving (tanha).
If I delight in ice-cream it’s presumably because of the pleasant taste (pleasant vedana), but also because I’m satisfying my craving for it (tanha).

Interestingly the Involvement Sutta we’ve been discussing in the other thread mentions a “sprinkling of delight”.

And if course in MN1 the Arahant attains liberation by not delighting in things.


Solving puzzles was pleasant mental vedana for me. I relished solving and it became my joy (nandi). I became attached to the perfection of ideas as proxies for reality and sincerely believed that one could, with effort, find a ground truth representation that was pure, clean and universally applicable.

And yet I always failed no matter how much I tried.

This is why for me reading MN1 was a “D’oh” moment that allowed me to consider chasing mental vedana as pointless. And the “D’oh” moment turned into an understanding of … DO. :grin: (couldn’t resist, but despite the pun, I was led to DO).


Thank you for the thoughtful post. I think this is an excellent point - which I would rephrase in terms of having a good knowledge of the concepts, so that when something arises it can be recognised.



I think that English grammar (tenses)
Is good representing which is 1st arrow
Which is 2nd arrow …
My english is not good enough, if any mistake , feels free to correct.
Example : feel
Feeling , feel , felt.
Feeling is memory (perception) past
Feel is feeling (vedana) present
Felt is feel ( sankhara )

When our finger is cut , it is feel hurt ( bodily vedana)…you know “hurt” because you’be experienced it before (felt) , i do not like this kind of feeling

The fist arrow - feel hurt
The second arrow - is theprocess from the feel hurt to i do not like …

Which is vedana in the 2nd arrow…
… sutta MN18 described as proliferation of what you think ( cetasika) …in sn 36.6 cetasikañca ( cetasika = belong to ceto , accompanying ceto (mind), as you know that vedana sanna sankhara vinnana is conjunction, impossible to differenciate and impossible to separate)… i think this is the vedana in the 2nd arrow


Does the Arahant still experience mental vedana?


If so, only minimally as required by life conditions:

They understand: ‘This field of perception is empty of the perception of the dimension of nothingness. It is empty of the perception of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. There is only this that is not emptiness, namely that associated with the six sense fields dependent on this body and conditioned by life.’ And so they regard it as empty of what is not there, but as to what remains they understand that it is present. That’s how emptiness is born in them—genuine, undistorted, and pure. –MN121


The Buddha experience headache.


Isn’t headache an example of unpleasant physical vedana?

If dukkha is a purely mental phenomena, then where does unpleasant mental vedana fit in?

Is dukkha just the second arrow (mental anguish about unpleasant bodily vedana), or could it also involve resistance to unpleasant mental vedana?


Remembering the previous headache and worrying about the next headache and wondering how to stop headaches.

“Mendicants, form of the past and future is suffering,


I think arahant still experience mental vedana but in different kind
But certainly i do not know which one…
The Buddha explain vedana in many ways

but i do not recognize which one


Worrying about the next headache would be an example of the Second arrow, mental anguish arising from bodily pain (ie unpleasant physical vedana).

I’m asking whether mental anguish arises from unpleasant mental vedana, or whether they are actually the same thing.

Actually I don’t think they are the same thing. Vedana is like an initial reaction, while anguish is an ongoing thing, a sankhara.

So I guess the Arahant still has unpleasant mental vedana (whatever that is), but doesn’t resist it or get upset about it, so there is no dukkha involved.


I understand mental vedanā as the hedonic tone associated with mental (cetasika) phenomena (as opposed to bodily (kāyika) phenomena).

The experience of anguish really entails a whole collection of bodily and mental phenomena, each with their own vedanā. The ‘woe is me’ thought component will likely have an associated mental vedanā of the domanassa ‘dis-ease’ type, or simply of the dukkham ‘unpleasant’ type, depending on which classification system one wishes to apply.


Pleasant feelings (piti) not of the flesh :

“And what are the six kinds of renunciation joy? The joy that arises when — experiencing the inconstancy of those very forms, their change, fading, & cessation — one sees with right discernment as it actually is that all forms, past or present, are inconstant, stressful, subject to change: That is called renunciation joy. (Similarly with sounds, smells, tastes, tactile sensations, & ideas.)”—MN 137


“Thus, Lord, even if shapes cognisable by the eye come very strongly into the field of vision of a monk whose mind is wholly freed, they do not obsess his mind for his mind comes to be undefiled, firm, won to composure, and he notes its BD.4.244 passing hence. If sounds cognisable by the ear … if scents cognisable by the nose … if tastes cognisable by the tongue … if touches cognisable by the body … if mental objects cognisable by the mind come very strongly into the field of thought of a monk whose mind is wholly freed, they do not obsess his mind for his mind comes to be undefiled, firm, won to composure, and he notes its passing hence.