What exactly is equanimity?

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thepea
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by thepea » Thu Aug 07, 2014 11:10 am

chownah wrote: You consider equanimity to be eternal and not impermanent?
Yes.

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Zom
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by Zom » Thu Aug 07, 2014 4:57 pm

Yes.
This is why Buddha said that "underlying tendency to ignorance lies behind equanimity" (c) MN 148 8-)

culaavuso
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by culaavuso » Thu Aug 07, 2014 5:20 pm

Zom wrote: This is why Buddha said that "underlying tendency to ignorance lies behind equanimity" (c) MN 148 8-)
Is this passage in MN 148 discussing all equanimity, or specifically what MN 137 calls household equanimity?
MN 148: Chachakka Sutta wrote: Aduk­kha­ma­su­khāya vedanāya phuṭṭho samāno tassā vedanāya samudayañca atthaṅgamañca assādañca ādīnavañca nissaraṇañca yathābhūtaṃ nappajānāti. Tassa avijjānusayo anuseti.

When one is touched by a neither-painful-nor-pleasant feeling, if one does not understand as it actually is the origination, the disappearance, the gratification, the danger, and the escape in regard to that feeling, then the underlying tendency to ignorance lies within one. (Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi)

If, when touched by a feeling of neither pleasure nor pain, one does not discern, as it actually is present, the origination, passing away, allure, drawback, or escape from that feeling, then one's ignorance-obsession gets obsessed. (Ven. Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu)
This description seems to indicate the distinction explained in MN 137 is relevant
MN 137: Saḷāyatana­vibhaṅga Sutta wrote: And what are the six kinds of household equanimity? The equanimity that arises when a foolish, deluded person — a run-of-the-mill, untaught person who has not conquered his limitations or the results of action & who is blind to danger — sees a form with the eye. Such equanimity does not go beyond the form, which is why it is called household equanimity. (Similarly with sounds, smells, tastes, tactile sensations, & ideas.)

And what are the six kinds of renunciation equanimity? The equanimity 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: This equanimity goes beyond form, which is why it is called renunciation equanimity. (Similarly with sounds, smells, tastes, tactile sensations, & ideas.)
A related passage can be found in MN 44
MN 44: Cūḷa­ve­dalla­ Sutta wrote: "In what way is pleasant feeling pleasant, lady, and in what way painful?"

"Pleasant feeling is pleasant in remaining, & painful in changing, friend Visakha. Painful feeling is painful in remaining & pleasant in changing. Neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling is pleasant in occurring together with knowledge, and painful in occurring without knowledge."

"What obsession gets obsessed with pleasant feeling? What obsession gets obsessed with painful feeling? What obsession gets obsessed with neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling?"

"Passion-obsession gets obsessed with pleasant feeling. Resistance-obsession gets obsessed with painful feeling. Ignorance-obsession gets obsessed with neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling."

"Does passion-obsession get obsessed with all pleasant feeling? Does resistance-obsession get obsessed with all painful feeling? Does ignorance-obsession get obsessed with all neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling?"

"No..."

"But what is to be abandoned with regard to pleasant feeling? What is to be abandoned with regard to painful feeling? What is to be abandoned with regard to neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling?"

"Passion-obsession is to be abandoned with regard to pleasant feeling. Resistance-obsession is to be abandoned with regard to painful feeling. Ignorance-obsession is to be abandoned with regard to neither-pleasant-nor-painful feeling."
...
There is the case where a monk, with the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. With that he abandons ignorance. No ignorance-obsession gets obsessed there.

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Zom
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by Zom » Thu Aug 07, 2014 6:13 pm

Is this passage in MN 148 discussing all equanimity, or specifically what MN 137 calls household equanimity?
All equanimity, because this is "a feeling", and a feeling should be fully understood and abandoned. Those meditators who do not penetrate the truth of 4th jhana equanimity - get stuck in samsara for eons -) (sorry don't remember a sutta, but there is one for sure).

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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by culaavuso » Thu Aug 07, 2014 8:09 pm

Zom wrote:
Is this passage in MN 148 discussing all equanimity, or specifically what MN 137 calls household equanimity?
All equanimity, because this is "a feeling", and a feeling should be fully understood and abandoned. Those meditators who do not penetrate the truth of 4th jhana equanimity - get stuck in samsara for eons -) (sorry don't remember a sutta, but there is one for sure).
This seems to indicate a particular parsing of MN 44
MN 44: Cūḷa­ve­dalla­ Sutta wrote: There is the case where a monk, with the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. With that he abandons ignorance. No ignorance-obsession gets obsessed there.
Since the fourth jhāna still has equanimity present, then the statement "With that he abandons ignorance" seems to refer to using the fourth jhāna as a tool or basis for further insight. Then, after that further progress has been made, it would be the case that no ignorance-obsession gets obsessed.

This appears to be consistent with the description given in AN 9.34
AN 9.34: Nib­bā­na­ Su­kha­ Sutta wrote: I have heard that on one occasion Ven. Sariputta was staying near Rajagaha in the Bamboo Grove, the Squirrels' Feeding Sanctuary. There he said to the monks, "This Unbinding is pleasant, friends. This Unbinding is pleasant."

When this was said, Ven. Udayin said to Ven. Sariputta, "But what is the pleasure here, my friend, where there is nothing felt?"

"Just that is the pleasure here, my friend: where there is nothing felt.
...
Furthermore, there is the case where a monk, with the abandoning of pleasure & stress — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither-pleasure-nor-pain. If, as he remains there, he is beset with attention to perceptions dealing with equanimity, that is an affliction for him...
Furthermore, there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of perceptions of [physical] form ...
Furthermore, there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of the infinitude of space ...
Furthermore, there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness ...
Furthermore, there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of nothingness ...
Furthermore, there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception, enters & remains in the cessation of perception & feeling. And, having seen [that] with discernment, his mental fermentations are completely ended. So by this line of reasoning it may be known how Unbinding is pleasant.
This also seems to be consistent with ignorance (avijjā) as a fetter (saṃyojana) not being abandoned until unbinding, which is also described as abandoning ignorance as an obsession (anusaya) and as a fermentation (āsava)

The sutta regarding the consequence of not penetrating the truth of the fourth jhāna may be AN 4.123
AN 4.123: Puggala Sutta wrote: Again, there is the case where an individual, with the abandoning of pleasure & stress — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither-pleasure-nor-pain. He savors that, longs for that, finds satisfaction through that. Staying there — fixed on that, dwelling there often, not falling away from that — then when he dies he reappears in conjunction with the Vehapphala devas. The Vehapphala devas, monks, have a life-span of 500 eons. A run-of-the-mill person having stayed there, having used up all the life-span of those devas, goes to hell, to the animal womb, to the state of the hungry shades. But a disciple of the Blessed One, having stayed there, having used up all the life-span of those devas, is unbound right in that state of being.

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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by SarathW » Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:58 am

Twelve type of equanimity is mention in this Sutta.
==========
A summary and enumeration of the different ways that the Buddha has analyzed feeling (hint: 3x6x6=108).


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nypo.html
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SarathW
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by SarathW » Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:38 am

What is the equanimity of the flesh?
Is that the sensual pleasure of the run of the mill (house hold) person?
============
"And what is equanimity of the flesh? There are these five strings of sensuality. Which five? Forms cognizable via the eye — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. Sounds cognizable via the ear... Aromas cognizable via the nose... Flavors cognizable via the tongue... Tactile sensations cognizable via the body — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. Whatever equanimity arises in dependence on these five strands of sensuality, that is called equanimity of the flesh.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

SarathW
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by SarathW » Tue Nov 25, 2014 3:12 am

Food for Awakening: The Role of Appropriate Attention by Ven. Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu wrote:

In fact, equanimity has many levels, and a crucial insight on the higher level of practice is to see that even the equanimity of refined jhanic states — in which awareness and its object seem totally "one" — is a fabrication: conditioned and willed. On gaining this insight, the mind inclines toward what is called "non-fashioning" (attammayata — literally, "not-made-of-that-ness"), in which you add nothing at all to the data of sensory experience.

The move from equanimity to non-fashioning is briefly described in a famous passage:

"Then, Bahiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen. In reference to the heard, only the heard. In reference to the sensed, only the sensed. In reference to the cognized, only the cognized. That is how you should train yourself. When for you there will be only the seen in reference to the seen, only the heard in reference to the heard, only the sensed in reference to the sensed, only the cognized in reference to the cognized, then, Bahiya, there's no you in that. When there's no you in that, there's no you there. When there's no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two. This, just this, is the end of stress."

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... 98#p318587
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

lonewolf
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by lonewolf » Tue Nov 25, 2014 6:30 am

The way I understand it equanimity is the neutrality of the mind, but not apathy, or lack of interest. On the contrary it is an alert state of mind, firm, and curious, but totally neutral as to the effects on the mind by the pleasant or the unpleasant. It's the state of mind, that allows other qualities like kindness, or compassion to function in an optimal way. As far as I can see eqanimity has no downside to it, mind that lacks equanimity is not working optimally though.

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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by DhammaOS » Tue Nov 25, 2014 7:11 pm

lonewolf wrote:The way I understand it equanimity is the neutrality of the mind, but not apathy, or lack of interest. On the contrary it is an alert state of mind, firm, and curious, but totally neutral as to the effects on the mind by the pleasant or the unpleasant. It's the state of mind, that allows other qualities like kindness, or compassion to function in an optimal way. As far as I can see eqanimity has no downside to it, mind that lacks equanimity is not working optimally though.
That has always been my idea of it. It also sounds like the suttas back up a sense of there being a negative equanimity, and I Ajahn Chah gives a pretty good example of a negative sort of equanimity when he talks about a disciple of his who didn't fix his leaking roof because he was practicing the "equanimity of a water buffalo". This PDF has a reference to this on page 90 (pg. 114 of the PDF file itself) http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai ... ah_web.pdf Honestly the trouble with equanimity as I see it is that it can be easily confused with simple indifference, or apathy, and a less advanced practioner would understandably have trouble discerning them, but I thank that opens opportunities for exploration. Hence why this topic is being hotly discussed right now. I might dig through my nikayas and see if I can find anything further.
"There are, O monks, these four lights. What four? The light of the moon, the light of the sun, the light of fire, and the light of wisdom. Of these four lights, the light of wisdom is supreme."-AN 4:143

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SarathW
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by SarathW » Tue Nov 25, 2014 8:21 pm

The equanimity to be practiced with discretion.
Arahant practice the equanimity at the highest level when he/she is in a Arahata Phala Samadhi.
Meditator practice equanimity based on level of his achievements.
Lay person should practice the equanimity as per Brahama Viharas.
So called household equanimity to be avoided.
:thinking:
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SarathW
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Re: What exactly is equanimity?

Post by SarathW » Fri Dec 12, 2014 8:06 am

"'Equanimity is of two sorts, I tell you: to be pursued & not to be pursued.' Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said? When one knows of a feeling of equanimity, 'As I pursue this equanimity, unskillful mental qualities increase, and skillful mental qualities decline,' that sort of equanimity is not to be pursued. When one knows of a feeling of equanimity, 'As I pursue this equanimity, unskillful mental qualities decline, and skillful mental qualities increase,' that sort of equanimity is to be pursued. And this sort of equanimity may be accompanied by directed thought & evaluation or free of directed thought & evaluation. Of the two, the latter is the more refined. 'Equanimity is of two sorts, I tell you: to be pursued & not to be pursued.' Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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