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Quick question. How do we hear the sound of our own thought? I assume ear-consciousness but without the contact of internal-external bases? Is this right?

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  • I think that Dhamma Dhatu's answer is right, in the context of the Pali suttas -- i.e. that's how the phenomenon may be categorised in the suttas.
    – ChrisW
    Nov 25, 2023 at 6:47
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    Perhaps off-topic from Buddhism, modern science has more to say on that kind of subject, involving different parts of the brain and so on -- e.g. there are long, long articles on Wikipedia, e.g. Subvocalization and Intrapersonal communication "(also known as autocommunication or inner speech)".
    – ChrisW
    Nov 25, 2023 at 6:47
  • If you mean literally "hearing" that may be a "hallucination" -- I remember one hallucination in my life, hearing my name aloud when I was alone in an empty room, reading late and very tired -- I knew someone else who often "heard a voice", a symptom of psychosis.
    – ChrisW
    Nov 25, 2023 at 6:54
  • Well you said "thoughts". I think Buddhism talks about 6 senses with the mind being the sixth -- so for example there is "ear sense, sound object (noise), and auditory-consciousness" ... conversely "mind-sense, mind object (thought), etc.".
    – ChrisW
    Nov 25, 2023 at 7:21
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    People "see", visualize or remember sights -- I can "picture" (remember sights at) places I've been to or plan to revisit -- I assume that "seeing" too is (categorized as) an example of 'mind'.
    – ChrisW
    Nov 25, 2023 at 7:29

2 Answers 2

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Thoughts are known/heard with the mind sense organ (mano) & mind consciousness (mano-vinnana).

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All sounds internal or external , all speeches internal or external occur due to combination and separation. Ear consciousness (or voice consciousness), ear and sound result in sound perception. Voice consciousness, vibrations and sound result in speech perception. Understanding part of voice is called voice consciousness.

When we think in our minds , there is a combination of formless vibrations,formless ear and ear consciousness (or voice consciousness) . Internal sound can be loud or faint(loud thinker or silent thinker).

Internal sound or thoughts are impermanent. It arises , changes or vanishes. Internal voice or thoughts are dependent on our understanding of language. It is learned. It has a beginning. That which has a beginning must have an end because it is result of combination and separation.

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