Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
SarathW
Posts: 9398
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by SarathW » Thu Feb 22, 2018 8:29 pm

Then why are they monks?
Is there a Vinaya rule?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
bodom
Posts: 6213
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:18 pm
Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by bodom » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:15 pm

SarathW wrote: In my case, I have never done formal sitting meditated more than thirty minutes due to my back pain.
However, I spent many hours studying and contemplating Dhamma.
As you may have noticed I am in Dhamma Wheel 24X7.
Limit your time studying. Don't waste your time all day online when it would be better spent in meditation. If you can't sit then do walking meditation. Keep balance between study and practice. Study is part of the practice but without meditation you don't reap the benefits. It's like reading a menu at a restaurant thinking about how good everything tastes without ever eating the food or tasting for yourself. Don't underestimate the importance of walking meditation. One can develop deep concentration from walking. Many monks have realized awakening while on the path walking in meditation:
These are the five rewards for one who practices walking meditation. Which five?

He can endure traveling by foot; he can endure exertion; he becomes free from disease; whatever he has eaten & drunk, chewed & savored, becomes well-digested; the concentration he wins while doing walking meditation lasts for a long time.

These are the five rewards for one who practices walking meditation.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
One can even watch the breath while walking:
When you walk, you don't have to focus on the steps of the feet. Focus on the breath and let the feet do the stepping on their own. Let each part of the body perform its function on its own. All you have to do is stay focused on the breath and you'll have full-body awareness.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/tha ... imple.html
:namaste:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With no struggling, no thinking,
the mind, still,
will see cause and effect
vanishing in the Void.
Attached to nothing, letting go:
Know that this is the way
to allay all stress.

- Upasika Kee Nanayan

SarathW
Posts: 9398
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by SarathW » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:03 pm

Thank you Bodom.
Isn't contemplation on Dhamma (Dahamma Vicaya) form of meditation?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
bodom
Posts: 6213
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:18 pm
Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by bodom » Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:34 pm

SarathW wrote:
Thu Feb 22, 2018 11:03 pm
Thank you Bodom.
Isn't contemplation on Dhamma (Dahamma Vicaya) form of meditation?
Yes it is an important part of the practice but by itself will not lead to deeper insights. It leads to conceptual knowledge not insight knowledge. One needs both tranquility and insight. Concentration is a crucial part of the path. As the Buddha says in the Dhammapada:

"There is no insight without concentraton, no concentration without insight.

Regarding the video I did not watch it. As practicing Buddhist we all know the value of Vipassana.

:namaste:

J.Lee.Nelson
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Dec 19, 2017 2:52 am

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by J.Lee.Nelson » Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:09 am

SarathW wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:54 am
Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.
Just sitting ten hours is a waste of time.
The best time to sleep is after 4.00am.
You can meditate about one hour at 7.00am. It is more productive.
Observing precepts are more important than meditation to attain enlightenment.

Is this a fair criticism?
Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment. I can neither confirm nor deny this claim since I am not yet an arahant.

Just sitting ten hours is a waste of time. If you're "just sitting" during a Vipassana retreat and not actively working on developing your Anapana or Vipassana, then it is absolutely a waste of time, but I found that the intensively long hours of meditation are extremely helpful in a boot camp sort of way.

The best time to sleep is after 4.00am. Getting up at 4am is a chance for the meditator on a retreat to affirm their resolve. If you can drag yourself out of bed at 4am and make the most of your time at the retreat, you're probably serious. If not and you'd rather sleep in, well...hmrph.

You can meditate about one hour at 7.00am. It is more productive. The rest of the day will be more productive if you're a layperson, but that's why we go on retreat: to get away from our laypeople responsibilities for 10 days. I meditate 1-2 hours per day, but I have not gone to nearly the depth that I did during a 10-day retreat. Life happens.

Observing precepts are more important than meditation to attain enlightenment. A Jain would say that.* That's like saying having good balance is more important to riding somewhere on a bicycle than pushing the pedals. Observing precepts is very important, because if you don't believe that you're worthy of liberation, you're not going to get over the hurdle of doubt. Observing Noble Silence during a retreat is exceptionally important because (1) it limits your me-making/them-making activity, (2) it keeps you from comparing your experience to those of others, and therefore (3) it avoids putting you in a hierarchal social structure during the retreat.

Mmm... Thank you for bringing these points up. Like you, I enjoy putting Buddhism head-to-head with other approaches as an exercise. So far Buddhism always wins.

*In the Samaññaphala Sutta (https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html) King Ajatasattu of Magadha relates that:
"Another time I approached Nigantha Nataputta [Jain] and, on arrival, exchanged courteous greetings with him. After an exchange of friendly greetings and courtesies, I sat to one side. As I was sitting there I asked him: 'Venerable Aggivessana, there are these common craftsmen... They live off the fruits of their crafts, visible in the here and now... Is it possible, venerable sir, to point out a similar fruit of the contemplative life, visible in the here and now?'

"When this was said, Nigantha Nataputta said to me, 'Great king, there is the case where the Nigantha — the knotless one — is restrained with the fourfold restraint. And how is the Nigantha restrained with the fourfold restraint? There is the case where the Nigantha is obstructed by all waters, conjoined with all waters, cleansed with all waters, suffused with all waters. This is how the Nigantha is restrained with the fourfold restraint. When the Nigantha — a knotless one — is restrained with such a fourfold restraint, he is said to be a Knotless One (Nigantha), a son of Nata (Nataputta), with his self perfected, his self controlled, his self established.'

"Thus, when asked about a fruit of the contemplative life, visible here and now, Nigantha Nataputta answered with fourfold restraint. Just as if a person, when asked about a mango, were to answer with a breadfruit; or, when asked about a breadfruit, were to answer with a mango: In the same way, when asked about a fruit of the contemplative life, visible here and now, Nigantha Nataputta answered with fourfold restraint. The thought occurred to me: 'How can anyone like me think of disparaging a brahman or contemplative living in his realm?' Yet I neither delighted in Nigantha Nataputta's words nor did I protest against them. Neither delighting nor protesting, I was dissatisfied. Without expressing dissatisfaction, without accepting his teaching, without adopting it, I got up from my seat and left.

SarathW
Posts: 9398
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by SarathW » Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:21 am

Mmm... Thank you for bringing these points up. Like you, I enjoy putting Buddhism head-to-head with other approaches as an exercise. So far Buddhism always wins.
:goodpost: :twothumbsup:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

jmccoy
Posts: 30
Joined: Sun May 28, 2017 6:18 pm

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by jmccoy » Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:09 am

SarathW wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:54 am
Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.
Just sitting ten hours is a waste of time.
The best time to sleep is after 4.00am.
You can meditate about one hour at 7.00am. It is more productive.
Observing precepts are more important than meditation to attain enlightenment.

Is this a fair criticism?
Ahhh whatever man.
I only watched it from the timestamp you linked it from.

Let me ask this: if there was an extremely unwholesome individual (a person whose *daily* life consists of performing actions which violate 4 or 5 of the five precepts) that you then put into an environment much like a (or exactly as a) Goenka Vipassana retreat, then is it still correct to say that 10 hours of sitting is a waste of time for that person (or even for society as a whole)?

This guy in the video seems like a marketer. Funny how he says, "can you do it for 48 minutes?"
In other words, if you went into pure jhana for 48 straight minutes but then came out of it "not enlightened" (by this guy's standard/defintion), then it's easy for this guy to just say, "oh, you didn't go deep enough / you weren't really in just your soul / it didn't work because of YOUR inadequacy, not mine" etc.

Just another charlatan marketing B.S., as far as I can tell.

Some guys have gone to say that it should take a split second if you "do it right" (like S.W.L. Poonja aka Papaji).
Honestly I just don't think these guys are talking about the true enlightenment (eradication of desire).
Even if one intellectually "incapacitates" all craving (such as to decide by will not to feed the craving for sensual desires any further by totally and completely abstaining from all of them hence of a single moment of recognition or realization), craving still persists as a bodily / biophysical phenomenon that takes multiple cycles of time/space (i.e. days, weeks, months) to diminish in toto.

I wonder how much $$$$ this guy charges for a 48 minute or hour-long session.

User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 11652
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: Vipassana is not the way to enlightenment.

Post by DNS » Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:19 am

He appears to be a Jain guru? If so, then he's not very Jain-like in stating that enlightenment can be obtained in 48 minutes.

He does mention getting established in the 5 precepts (Jain version which is very similar to Buddhist ones) and eliminating attachment & aversion; which is very similar, almost identical to initial Buddhist practice.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider] and 38 guests