Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Sep 19, 2011 5:57 pm

Alex123 wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Bhante V does not use mental noting, so it is VERY different from Mahasi's method. Furthermore while Bhante V teaches to return to only one object (metta or anapanasati) it also differs from Mahasi's method where you observe and label different objects.
Vimalaramsi's method has been described this way by two others, which does not give us a picture of something radically different from the Burmese method from which it is obviously derived:


Mahasi's method uses labeling of what happens. Vimalaramsi's method does not.

In Mahasi's method one changes the object depending on whether one is sitting, walking, or doing daily activities.

In Vimalaramsi's method one is supposed to stick to one primary object (most often metta, sometimes anapanasati) no matter what one is doing such as sitting ,walking or doing daily activities. Another difference.
And in the Vimalaramsi method one labels, notes (as one who has actually done the practice under V's guidance sates), the disturbances to one's concentration on a primary object. The "primary" object in Mahasi Sayadaw sitting practice is one's breathing. You have yet to actually show a significant, meaningful difference.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Sep 19, 2011 7:56 pm

Hi Alex,
Alex123 wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Bhante V does not use mental noting, so it is VERY different from Mahasi's method. Furthermore while Bhante V teaches to return to only one object (metta or anapanasati) it also differs from Mahasi's method where you observe and label different objects.
Vimalaramsi's method has been described this way by two others, which does not give us a picture of something radically different from the Burmese method from which it is obviously derived:


Mahasi's method uses labeling of what happens. Vimalaramsi's method does not.

In Mahasi's method one changes the object depending on whether one is sitting, walking, or doing daily activities.

In Vimalaramsi's method one is supposed to stick to one primary object (most often metta, sometimes anapanasati) no matter what one is doing such as sitting ,walking or doing daily activities. Another difference.

I didn't say that there were not differences and I already pointed them out.
Noting isn't a huge issue - it's just a way of gaining focus.
As you say, the way of handling the primary object and returning to it is a little different.

The key thing that almost all "vipassana" methods have in common (I've discussed Bhante V, Mahasi and Ajahn T in some detail above) is that they use a primary object to develop concentration and tend to examine secondary objects (distractions) as the basis for insight.

Whether you want to focus on differences or similarities is up to you. Since they all seem to me to be perfectly consistent with suttas such as the Satipatthana Sutta I prefer to just think of them as small differences in detail based on the particular experience of the teachers.

:anjali:
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby Alex123 » Mon Sep 19, 2011 8:12 pm

tiltbillings wrote:And in the Vimalaramsi method one labels, notes (as one who has actually done the practice under V's guidance sates), the disturbances to one's concentration on a primary object. The "primary" object in Mahasi Sayadaw sitting practice is one's breathing. You have yet to actually show a significant, meaningful difference.


When I've studied under him, I didn't hear those instructions. I've read his book and listened to his lectures. I don't ever remember him using labeling as in Mahasi like system. Furthermore Ven. Vimalaramsi taught against what he called "momentary" (or any kind of) concentration. Ven. Mahasi did teach to reach momentary concentration... Maybe in few past years he has changed his instructions, I don't know, I haven't followed him for past few years.
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Sep 20, 2011 5:01 am

Alex123 wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:And in the Vimalaramsi method one labels, notes (as one who has actually done the practice under V's guidance sates), the disturbances to one's concentration on a primary object. The "primary" object in Mahasi Sayadaw sitting practice is one's breathing. You have yet to actually show a significant, meaningful difference.


When I've studied under him, I didn't hear those instructions. I've read his book and listened to his lectures. I don't ever remember him using labeling as in Mahasi like system. Furthermore Ven. Vimalaramsi taught against what he called "momentary" (or any kind of) concentration. Ven. Mahasi did teach to reach momentary concentration... Maybe in few past years he has changed his instructions, I don't know, I haven't followed him for past few years.
The problem is that concentration is a necessity in practice of meditation. Now the picture becomes confused as to what is being taught.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby thelotuseffect » Wed Sep 21, 2011 3:42 pm

Ven. Vimalaramsi doesn't like the word concentration because of some peoples misunderstanding of it. He does teach concentration in the context of "mental collectedness" which connotes a light mind that is not one pointed. That is what he is against. One pointed concentration which causes a mental "tunnel vision" that forces the hindrances from arising thus inhibiting the wisdom that allows the insight into how they arise.
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby daverupa » Wed Sep 21, 2011 3:59 pm

thelotuseffect wrote:Ven. Vimalaramsi doesn't like the word concentration because of some peoples misunderstanding of it. He does teach concentration in the context of "mental collectedness" which connotes a light mind that is not one pointed. That is what he is against. One pointed concentration which causes a mental "tunnel vision" that forces the hindrances from arising thus inhibiting the wisdom that allows the insight into how they arise.


The underlined portion is ill-phrased. Can you clarify?

...you can't possibly mean to say that preventing the hindrances from arising is a hindrance...
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Sep 21, 2011 7:02 pm

daverupa wrote:
thelotuseffect wrote:Ven. Vimalaramsi doesn't like the word concentration because of some peoples misunderstanding of it. He does teach concentration in the context of "mental collectedness" which connotes a light mind that is not one pointed. That is what he is against. One pointed concentration which causes a mental "tunnel vision" that forces the hindrances from arising thus inhibiting the wisdom that allows the insight into how they arise.


The underlined portion is ill-phrased. Can you clarify?

...you can't possibly mean to say that preventing the hindrances from arising is a hindrance...
The point is that the more one pointed concentration the more likely the concentration is to suppress the hindrances, which is, of course, not eradicating them via insight.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Sep 21, 2011 7:04 pm

thelotuseffect wrote:Ven. Vimalaramsi doesn't like the word concentration because of some peoples misunderstanding of it. He does teach concentration in the context of "mental collectedness" which connotes a light mind that is not one pointed. That is what he is against. One pointed concentration which causes a mental "tunnel vision" that forces the hindrances from arising thus inhibiting the wisdom that allows the insight into how they arise.
And now we are back to having Vimalaramsi's method look like a variation of Burmese vipassana.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Sep 21, 2011 7:29 pm

daverupa wrote:
thelotuseffect wrote:Ven. Vimalaramsi doesn't like the word concentration because of some peoples misunderstanding of it. He does teach concentration in the context of "mental collectedness" which connotes a light mind that is not one pointed. That is what he is against. One pointed concentration which causes a mental "tunnel vision" that forces the hindrances from arising thus inhibiting the wisdom that allows the insight into how they arise.


The underlined portion is ill-phrased. Can you clarify?

...you can't possibly mean to say that preventing the hindrances from arising is a hindrance...
Let me add a bit more here to clarify. One pointed concentration does prevent the hindrances from arising, but it also prevents their arising for a time afterwards. This is something I have read years ago, and I was directly taught this by the teacher who taught me jhana. Now, the interesting question: Is this a direct sutta teaching? I don't think so. It more likely from the commentaries and the Abhidhamma, which should not disqualify it out of hand for that reasaon, for the simple reason that experience seems to show that this is the case.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby Sylvester » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:35 am

tiltbillings wrote:Let me add a bit more here to clarify. One pointed concentration does prevent the hindrances from arising, but it also prevents their arising for a time afterwards. This is something I have read years ago, and I was directly taught this by the teacher who taught me jhana. Now, the interesting question: Is this a direct sutta teaching? I don't think so. It more likely from the commentaries and the Abhidhamma, which should not disqualify it out of hand for that reasaon, for the simple reason that experience seems to show that this is the case.


There's at least one canonical reference for post-Jhana suppression of Hindrances, found in AN 9.35 thus -

(after the standard listing of the 9 attainments)

Whenever a monk attains to such an attainment, or emerges (vuṭṭhāti) from it, his mind is pliable and malleable

Yato kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu taṃ tadeva samāpattiṃ samāpajjatipi vuṭṭhātipi, tassa mudu cittaṃ hoti kammaññaṃ


The "mudu" is part of the pericopes describing the state of the auditor who is free of Hindrances when listening to the teaching peculiar to the Buddhas. It's also found in the simile of the goldsmith working gold (eg AN 3.100), comparing the heightened mind to gold which is mudu (pliable), kammañña (malleable) and pabhassara (radiant).

So, you and the Abhidhammikas are on sure footing.
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:49 am

Hi Sylvester,

Good point. Also, the following sequence is in dozens of suttas:
[Works through Jhanas...]
"With his mind thus concentrated, purified, and bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, and attained to imperturbability, he directs and inclines it to
[... three knowledges ...]

E.g. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

:anjali:
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:55 am

mikenz66 wrote:Hi Sylvester,

Good point. Also, the following sequence is in dozens of suttas:
[Works through Jhanas...]
"With his mind thus concentrated, purified, and bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, and attained to imperturbability, he directs and inclines it to
[... three knowledges ...]

E.g. http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

:anjali:
Mike
But can we read that as indicating that the hindrances will be suppressed for a time after emerging from jhana?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Sep 22, 2011 9:24 am

tiltbillings wrote:But can we read that as indicating that the hindrances will be suppressed for a time after emerging from jhana?

That's how I always read it. Of course, I could be wrong, and I guess it involves some assumptions. But I struggle to imagine other ways of reading it...

:anjali:
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby Sylvester » Thu Sep 22, 2011 9:37 am

This brings me to a post-canonical debate about the possibilities of post-Jhana iddhis. I'm not sure if it was in the context of "transfer of merit/demerit" or simply benefaction versus malediction.

Anyway, the query was asked as to how benefaction was possible, and post-Jhana iddhis was proposed. The doubter then asked if it was then also possible to use post-Jhana iddhi for malediction. The answer was that malediction requires vyapada, and if that hindrance could creep back in, the basis for the iddhis would have evaporated.

Does anybody have the reference for this? There's a little debate going on in our sphere, and I wanted to be certain of what that text actually said, before I misquoted.

Thanks. :anjali:
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Sep 23, 2011 8:59 am

mikenz66 wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:But can we read that as indicating that the hindrances will be suppressed for a time after emerging from jhana?

That's how I always read it. Of course, I could be wrong, and I guess it involves some assumptions. But I struggle to imagine other ways of reading it...

:anjali:
Mike
Either way, It looks like Vimalaramsi' is also in-line with the commentaries after all.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby Gena1480 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 5:35 am

it does not matter about his views on Buddhagosa
you have to go to his retreat to test his way of teaching the meditation
where does he offer retreat?
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 5:43 am

Gena1480 wrote:it does not matter about his views on Buddhagosa
you have to go to his retreat to test his way of teaching the meditation
where does he offer retreat?

http://www.dhammasukha.org/index.html

:anjali:
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby Gena1480 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:46 am

Thanks mike
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby befriend » Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:58 am

ive actually tried meditating as he describes, for example the most important part of this meditation teaching is relaxing the tension in the mind after one wishes a thought of good will, this is letting go of craving, and it makes the might very bright and clear right after you do it, sometimes it actually feels better than the energy from the thought of metta. he also teaches to smile slightly all day long i notice this is a great way to have joy in the mind and it makes my body relaxed and happy. dont throw the baby out with the bath water if he says something a little off it doesnt mean everything else about what he teaches is off. people who do retreats with him are pretty much guranteed to enter jhana within a few days, i think thats says it all.
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Re: Video: Meditation: Suttas vs Commentaries

Postby Gena1480 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 2:38 pm

i did try it yesterday
and had three yellow light flashes in row
happen to me
what truly strike me
about what he said about Jhana that they are level of understanding
i could not agree more
mn 111 show Jhana is a way of understanding

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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