Jhanas and Nirvana

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canadianbuddhist
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Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by canadianbuddhist » Sat Jul 21, 2018 1:23 am

Should every person who is going to attain the Nirvana follow the 1-8 jhanas? Or the jhanas only work for some? For example, I know there were many who attained the Nirvana just by listening to a dhamma talk or cleaning a compond of the monastery? So I feel like working on 1-8 jhanas kinda only specific to some people when they attain the Nirvana and not common to all who attain the nirvana?

Pls explain.
Thank You.

SarathW
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by SarathW » Sat Jul 21, 2018 4:11 am

The way I understand you do not require Jhana to become a Sotapanna.
Mere concentration is suffice.
However, for the other three attainments, it requires Jhana (Vipassana)
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

paul
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by paul » Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:12 am

Although it is necessary to have an overview of the doctrine, i.e. how does jhana relate to nibbana, there should also be a parallel development in experiential practice. A practitioner’s immediate reality of nibbana is the goal of stream entry. Yet even more relevant would be for them to address the question, “What can I do now to have a more peaceful mind ?”, remembering that a mind lacking remorse is dependent on wholesome states, and that jhana is right concentration, the absence of the hindrances.

santa100
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by santa100 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 3:40 pm

canadianbuddhist wrote:Should every person who is going to attain the Nirvana follow the 1-8 jhanas? Or the jhanas only work for some? For example, I know there were many who attained the Nirvana just by listening to a dhamma talk or cleaning a compond of the monastery?"
One does not have to go through all 8 meditative absorptions to attain Nibbana. See the Seven-fold classification of noble individuals in MN 70. However, it does require certain level of jhana for enlightenment and just by listening to a dhamma talk or cleaning stuff simply won't cut it. For the few cases that happened that way, it's important to notice that those individuals had already been cultivating sila, samadhi, and panna over a long period of time, and the listening to a few dhamma verse or some simple physical events were only the last catalysts that trigger the cross-over from worldly to enlightenment. They themselves must've already been at the every edge of enlightenment through much dedication and cultivation.

rightviewftw
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by rightviewftw » Sat Jul 21, 2018 6:43 pm

Is it possible to attain path without developing Jhana? - Yes
Is it possible for everyone to do this in theory? - Idk
Is it possible for everyone to do this in practice? - Idk
Is it helpful to develop jhanas or at least a jhana? - Absolutely imo

I also do not a see a reason to differentiate between developing Path and developing Jhana. For example if a person trains Anapanasati and has a comprehensive practice, such a person can be expected to develop both Path and the Jhana, if he will succeed and whichever comes first depends on his faculties.
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by DNS » Sat Jul 21, 2018 9:45 pm

canadianbuddhist wrote:
Sat Jul 21, 2018 1:23 am
Should every person who is going to attain the Nirvana follow the 1-8 jhanas? Or the jhanas only work for some? For example, I know there were many who attained the Nirvana just by listening to a dhamma talk or cleaning a compond of the monastery? So I feel like working on 1-8 jhanas kinda only specific to some people when they attain the Nirvana and not common to all who attain the nirvana?
There are some views in Theravada on this ranging from jhanas being absolutely necessary to the dry-insight camp which places very little emphasis on jhanas.

I am on the side of the importance of jhanas. An arahant is virtually all-knowing (regarding the Dhamma) and fully accomplished in practice. He/she would have mastered the Dhamma in total, including the 8-fold path. Leaving out Right Samadhi would be practicing and being accomplished at a 7-fold path.

In my opinion, an arahant would be at least mostly proficient in jhanas, perhaps not as adept as Maha-Moggallana, but still proficient. However a jhanas-master may not necessarily be an arahant or even a sotapanna. (Alara Kalama and Udaka Ramaputta)

rightviewftw
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by rightviewftw » Sun Jul 22, 2018 12:39 am

MN 70 lists 7 types and according to Puggalapaññatti which an Abhidhamma Book the interpretation is outlined thus:
http://www.palikanon.com/english/the_jh ... .htm#_ftn1
[1] Saddhānusari
[1] The faith-devotee

The faith-devotee is explained in the sutta thus:

Herein, monks, some person has not reached with his own (mental) body those peaceful immaterial deliverances transcending material form; nor after seeing with wisdom, have his cankers been destroyed.[2] But he has a certain degree of faith in the Tathāgata, a certain degree of devotion to him, and he has these qualities - the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, concentration and wisdom. This person, monks, is called a faith-devotee. [M.i,479]

The Puggalapaññatti (p. 182) defines the faith-devotee from a different angle as a disciple practising for the fruit of stream-entry in whom the faculty of faith is predominant and who develops the noble path led by faith. It adds that when he is established in the fruit he becomes one liberated by faith. Although the sutta excludes the „peaceful immaterial attainments,“ i.e. the four immaterial jhānas, from the faith-devotee’s equipment, this implies nothing with regard to his achievement of the four lower mundane jhānas. It would seem that the faith-devotee can have previously attained any of the four fine-material jhānas before reaching the path, and can also be a dry-insight worker bereft of mundane jhāna.

[2] saddhāvimutta
[2] The one liberated by faith

The one liberated by faith is strictly and literally defined as a noble disciple at the six intermediate levels, from the fruit of stream-entry through to the path of Arahatship, who lacks the immaterial jhānas and has a predominance of the faith faculty.

The Buddha explains the one liberated by faith as follows:

Herein, monks, some person has not reached with his own (mental) body those peaceful immaterial deliverances transcending material form; but having seen with wisdom, some of his cankers have been destroyed, and his faith in the Tathāgata is settled, deeply rooted, well established. This person, monks, is called one liberated by faith. [M.i,478]

As in the case of the faith-devotee, the one liberated by faith, while lacking the immaterial jhānas, may still be an obtainer of the four mundane jhānas as well as a dry-insight worker.

The Puggalapaññatti states (pp.184-85) that the person liberated by faith is one who understands the Four Noble Truths, has seen and verified by means of wisdom the teachings proclaimed by the Tathāgata, and having seen with wisdom has eliminated some of his cankers. However, he has not done so as easily as the ditthipatta, the person attained to understanding, whose progress is easier due to his superior wisdom. The fact that the one liberated by faith has destroyed only some of his cankers implies that he has advanced beyond the first path but not yet reached the final fruit, the fruit of Arahatship.

[3] Kayasakkhi
[3] The body witness

The body witness is a noble disciple at the six intermediate levels, from the fruit of stream-entry to the path of Arahatship, who has a predominance of the faculty of concentration and can obtain the immaterial jhānas. The sutta explanation reads:

And what person, monks, is a body-witness? Herein, monks, some person has reached with his own (mental) body those peaceful immaterial deliverances transcending material form, and having seen with wisdom, some of his cankers have been destroyed. This person, monks, is called a body-witness. [M.i,478]

The Puggalapaññatti (p.184) offers a slight variation in this phrasing, substituting „the eight deliverances“ (atthavimokkhā) for the sutta’s „peaceful immaterial deliverances“ (santā vimokkhā āruppa). These eight deliverances consist of three meditative attainments pertaining to the fine-material sphere (inclusive of all four lower jhānas), the four immaterial jhānas, and the cessation of perception and feeling (saññāvedayitanirodha) - the last a special attainment accessible only to those non-returners and Arahats who have also mastered the eight jhānas.[4] The statement of the Puggalapaññatti does not mean either that the achievement of all eight deliverances is necessary to become a body-witness or that the achievement of the three lower deliverances is sufficient. What is both requisite and sufficient to qualify as a body-witness is the partial destruction of defilements coupled with the attainment of at least the lowest immaterial jhāna Thus the body-witness becomes fivefold by way of those who obtain any of the four immaterial jhānas and the one who also obtains the cessation of perception and feeling.

[4] ubhatobhāgavimutta
[4] One who is liberated in both ways

One who is liberated in both ways is an Arahat who has completely destroyed the defilements and possesses the immaterial attainments. The commentaries explain the name „liberated in both ways“ as meaning „through the immaterial attainment he is liberated from the material body and through the path (of Arahatship) he is liberated from the mental body“ (MA.ii,131). The sutta defines this type of disciple thus:

And what person, monks, is liberated in both ways? Herein, monks, someone has reached with his own (mental) body those peaceful immaterial deliverances transcending material form, and having seen with wisdom, his cankers are destroyed. This person, monks, is called liberated in both ways. [M.i,477]

The Puggalapaññatti (p.l84) gives basically the same formula but replaces „immaterial deliverances“ with „the eight deliverances.“ The same principle of interpretation that applied to the body-witness applies here: the attainment of any immaterial jhāna, even the lowest, is sufficient to qualify a person as both-ways liberated. As the commentary to the Visuddhi-Magga says: „One who has attained Arahatship after gaining even one [immaterial jhāna] is liberated both ways“ (Vism.T.ii,466). This type becomes fivefold by way of those who attain Arahatship after emerging from one or another of the four immaterial jhānas and the one who attains Arahatship after emerging from the attainment of cessation (MA:iii,131).

[5] dhammānusari
[5] The truth devotee

The truth devotee is a disciple on the first path in whom the faculty of wisdom is predominant. The Buddha explains the truth-devotee as follows:

Herein, monks, some person has not reached with his own (mental) body those peaceful immaterial deliverances transcending material form; nor, after seeing with wisdom, have his cankers been destroyed. But the teachings proclaimed by the Tathāgata are accepted by him through mere reflection, and he has these qualities - the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, concentration and wisdom. This person, monks, is called a truth-devotee. [M.i,479]

The Puggalapaññatti (p.185) defines the truth-devotee as one practising for realisation of the fruit of stream-entry in whom the faculty of wisdom is predominant, and who develops the path led by wisdom. It adds that when a truth-devotee is established in the fruit of stream-entry he becomes one attained to understanding, the sixth type. The sutta and Abhidhamma again differ as to emphasis, the one stressing lack of the immaterial jhānas, the other the ariyan stature. Presumably, he may have any of the four fine-material jhānas or be a bare-insight practitioner without any mundane jhāna.

[6] ditthipatta
[6] The one attained to understanding

The one attained to understanding is a noble disciple at the six intermediate levels who lacks the immaterial jhānas and has a predominance of the wisdom faculty. The Buddha explains:

And what person, monks, is the one attained to understanding? Herein, monks someone has not reached with his own mental body those peaceful immaterial deliverances transcending material form, but having seen with wisdom some of his cankers are destroyed, and the teachings proclaimed by the Tathāgata have been seen and verified by him with wisdom. This person, monks, is called the one attained to understanding. [M.i,478]

The Puggalapaññatti (p.185) defines the one attained to understanding as a person who understands the Four Noble Truths, has seen and verified by means of wisdom the teachings proclaimed by the Tathāgata, and having seen with wisdom has eliminated some of his cankers. He is thus the „wisdom counterpart“ of the one liberated by faith, but progresses more easily than the latter by virtue of his sharper wisdom. Like his counterpart, he may possess any of the four mundane jhānas or may be a dry-insight worker.

[7] paññāvimutta
[7] The one liberated by wisdom

The one liberated by wisdom is an Arahat who does not obtain the immaterial attainments. In the words of the sutta:

And what, person, monks, is the one liberated by wisdom? Herein, monks, someone has not reached with his own (mental) body those peaceful material deliverances transcending material form, but having seen with wisdom his cankers are destroyed. This person, monks, is called one liberated by wisdom. [M.i.477-78]

The Puggalapaññatti’s definition (p.185) merely replaces „immaterial deliverances“ with „the eight deliverances.“ Though such Arahats do not reach the immaterial jhānas it is quite possible for them to attain the lower jhānas. The sutta commentary in fact states that the one liberated by wisdom is fivefold by way of the dry-insight worker and the four who attain Arahatship after emerging from the four jhānas.

It should be noted that the one liberated by wisdom is contrasted not with the one liberated by faith, but with the one liberated in both ways. The issue that divides the two types of Arahat is the lack or possession of the four immaterial jhānas and the attainment of cessation. The person liberated by faith is found at the six intermediate levels of sanctity, not at the level of Arahatship. When he obtains Arahatship, lacking the immaterial jhānas, he becomes one liberated by wisdom even though faith rather than wisdom is his predominant faculty. Similarly, a meditator with predominance of concentration who possesses the immaterial attainments will still be liberated in both ways even if wisdom rather than concentration claims first place among his spiritual endowments, as was the case with the venerable Sāriputta.

Here is the support for the red part from Sutta Pitaka;
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
"Then, having known thus, having seen thus, do you dwell touching with your body the peaceful emancipations, the formless states beyond form [the formless jhanas]?"

"No, friend."

"So just now, friends, didn't you make that declaration without having attained any of these Dhammas?"

"We're released through discernment, friend Susima."
Here The Arahant's declare not having attained the Formless Jhanas saying nothing about the Rupa Jhanas.
Next, https://www.wisdompubs.org/book/middle- ... nkya-sutta
[....]
“And what, Ānanda, is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters? Here[....] a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the first jhāna, [....]
“Whatever exists therein[....] he sees those states as impermanent, as suffering[....]. He turns his mind away from those states and directs it towards the deathless element thus: ‘[....] Nibbāna.’ If he is steady in that, he attains the destruction of the taints. But if he does not attain the destruction of the taints [....] then with the destruction of the five lower fetters he becomes one due to reappear spontaneously [in the Pure Abodes] [....].
10–12. “Again,[....]a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the second jhāna … Again,[....]a bhikkhu … enters upon and abides in the third jhāna … Again,[....]… a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the fourth jhāna,[....].
“Whatever exists therein [....], he sees those states as impermanent … as not self. He turns his mind away from those states and directs it towards the deathless element … This is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters.
13. “Again, [....]a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the base of infinite space.
“Whatever exists therein [....], he sees those states as impermanent … as not self. He turns his mind away from those states and directs it towards the deathless element … This is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters.
14. “Again, [....] a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the base of infinite consciousness.
“Whatever exists therein [....]he sees those states as impermanent … as not self. He turns his mind away from those states and directs it towards the deathless element … This is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters.
15. “Again, [....] a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the base of nothingness.
“Whatever exists therein[....]he sees those states as impermanent, [....]. He turns his mind away from those states and directs it towards the deathless element thus: ‘This is the peaceful, this is the sublime, that is, [....], Nibbāna.’ If he is steady in that, [....] he attains the destruction of the taints. But if he does not attain the destruction of the taints [....] then with the destruction of the five lower fetters he becomes one due to reappear spontaneously [in the Pure Abodes] and there attain final Nibbāna without ever returning from that world. This is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters.”
Basically the Tathagata says that in order to destroy the lower fetters a Bhikkhu enters one of those jhanas then turns his mind away from those states and turning it towards the cessation.
Ananda then asks:
16. “Venerable sir, if this is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters, then how is it that some bhikkhus here [are said to] gain deliverance of mind and some [are said to] gain deliverance by wisdom?”
The way the question is posed would suggest that Ananda is perplexed and is not merely asking "Which of those are said to be released by wisdom", he is asking "If that is the path then how are some released by wisdom".
The Tathagata replies:
“The difference here, Ānanda, is in their faculties, I say.”
I think what is important to understand is that the key in the path thus explained is this part:
He turns his mind away from those states and directs it towards the deathless element thus: ‘This is the peaceful, this is the sublime, that is, [....], Nibbāna.’
And supposedly the stronger the wisdom the less of a jhana is needed, supposedly with strong enough discernment it is not necessary to enter jhana and a person can direct his mind to the Deathless without entering the jhana, this is proven by this excerpt;
Then Sariputta the wanderer spoke thus to the Ven. Assaji:

Speak a little or a lot,
but tell me just the gist.
The gist is what I want.
What use is a lot of rhetoric?

Then Ven. Assaji gave this Dhamma exposition to Sariputta the Wanderer:

Whatever phenomena arise from cause:
their cause
and their cessation.
Such is the teaching of the Tathagata,
the Great Contemplative.

Then to Sariputta the wanderer, as he heard this Dhamma exposition, there arose the dustless, stainless Dhamma eye: "Whatever is subject to origination is all subject to cessation."

Even if just this is the Dhamma,
you have penetrated
to the Sorrowless (asoka) State
unseen, overlooked (by us)
for many myriads of aeons.

Then Sariputta the wanderer went to Moggallana the wanderer. Moggallana the wanderer saw him coming from afar and, on seeing him, said, "Bright are your faculties, my friend; pure your complexion, and clear. Could it be that you have attained the Deathless?"

"Yes, my friend, I have attained the Deathless. "

"But how, friend, did you attain the Deathless?"

"Just now, friend, I saw Ven. Assaji going for alms in Rajagaha: gracious in the way he approached and departed, looked forward and behind, drew in and stretched out his arm; his eyes downcast, his every movement consummate. On seeing him, the thought occurred to me: 'Surely, of those in this world who are arahants or have entered the path to arahantship, this is one. What if I were to approach him and question him: "On whose account have you gone forth? Who is your teacher? In whose Dhamma do you delight?"'

"But then the thought occurred to me: 'This is the wrong time to question him. He is going for alms in the town. What if I were to follow behind this monk who has found the path for those who seek it?'

"Then Ven. Assaji, having gone for alms in Rajagaha, left, taking the alms he had received. I approached him and, on arrival, having exchanged friendly greetings and engaged in polite conversation, stood to one side. As I stood there I said, 'Your faculties are bright, my friend, your complexion pure and clear. On whose account have you gone forth? Who is your teacher? In whose Dhamma do you delight?'

"'There is, my friend, the Great Contemplative, a son of the Sakyans, gone forth from a Sakyan family. I have gone forth on account of that Blessed One. That Blessed One is my teacher. It is in that Blessed One's Dhamma that I delight.'

"'But what is your teacher's teaching? What does he proclaim?'

"'I am new, my friend, not long gone forth, only recently come to this doctrine and discipline. I cannot explain the doctrine to you in detail, but I can give you the gist in brief.'

"'Speak a little or a lot,
but tell me just the gist.
The gist is what I want.
What use is a lot of rhetoric?'

"Then Ven. Assaji gave me this Dhamma exposition:

"'Whatever phenomena arise from cause:
their cause
and their cessation.
Such is the teaching of the Tathagata,
the Great Contemplative.'"

Then to Moggallana the wanderer, as he heard this Dhamma exposition, there arose the dustless, stainless Dhamma eye: Whatever is subject to origination is all subject to cessation.

Even if just this is the Dhamma,
you have penetrated
to the Sorrowless (asoka) State
unseen, overlooked (by us)
for many myriads of aeons.

— Mv.I.23.5
This proves beyond doubt that it is not actually necessary to enter and abide in jhana right before directing the mind to the Deathless.

There is another discourse:
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
Ven. Ananda said: "Friends, whoever — monk or nun — declares the attainment of arahantship in my presence, they all do it by means of one or another of four paths. Which four?
[...]
"Then there is the case where a monk's mind has its restlessness concerning the Dhamma [Comm: the corruptions of insight] well under control. There comes a time when his mind grows steady inwardly, settles down, and becomes unified & concentrated. In him the path is born. He follows that path, develops it, pursues it. As he follows the path, developing it & pursuing it — his fetters are abandoned, his obsessions destroyed.

"Whoever — monk or nun — declares the attainment of arahantship in my presence, they all do it by means of one or another of these four paths."
Now the commentary here says that restlessness concerning the Dhamma is under control and it rerfers to the corruptions of insight, now this would refer to strong discernment faculty knowledge of what is and what is not the Path. Even if one was to ignore the Commentary and leave it open to interpretation in this case one could infer from the Sutta that:
The fourth case is such that it is about one who neither exactly "developed insight preceded by tranquillity" nor exactly one who "developed tranquillity preceded by insight" or "developed tranquillity in tandem with insight" exactly, yet in that one the path was born.

Last piece of evidence from the Sutta are the AN 4.162 and AN 4.163
"Monks, there are these four modes of practice. Which four? Painful practice with slow intuition, painful practice with quick intuition, pleasant practice with slow intuition, & pleasant practice with quick intuition.AN 4.162

"And which is painful practice with slow intuition? There is the case where a certain individual is normally of an intensely passionate nature. He perpetually experiences pain & distress born of passion. Or he is normally of an intensely aversive nature. He perpetually experiences pain & distress born of aversion. Or he is normally of an intensely deluded nature. He perpetually experiences pain & distress born of delusion. These five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear weakly. Because of their weakness, he attains only slowly the immediacy [1] that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called painful practice with slow intuition.AN 4.162
"And which is painful practice with slow intuition? There is the case where a monk remains focused on unattractiveness with regard to the body, percipient of loathsomeness with regard to food, percipient of non-delight with regard to the entire world, (and) focused on inconstancy with regard to all fabrications. The perception of death is well established within him. He dwells in dependence on the five strengths of a learner — strength of conviction, strength of conscience, strength of concern, strength of persistence, & strength of discernment — but these five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear weakly. Because of their weakness, he attains only slowly the immediacy [1] that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called painful practice with slow intuition.AN 4.163
"And which is painful practice with quick intuition? There is the case where a certain individual is normally of an intensely passionate nature. He perpetually experiences pain & distress born of passion. Or he is normally of an intensely aversive nature. He perpetually experiences pain & distress born of aversion. Or he is normally of an intensely deluded nature. He perpetually experiences pain & distress born of delusion. These five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear intensely. Because of their intensity, he attains quickly the immediacy that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called painful practice with quick intuition.AN 4.162
"And which is painful practice with quick intuition? There is the case where a monk remains focused on unattractiveness with regard to the body, percipient of loathsomeness with regard to food, percipient of non-delight with regard to the entire world, (and) focused on inconstancy with regard to all fabrications. The perception of death is well established within him. He dwells in dependence on these five strengths of a learner — strength of conviction, strength of conscience, strength of concern, strength of persistence, & strength of discernment — and these five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear intensely. Because of their intensity, he attains quickly the immediacy that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called painful practice with quick intuition.AN 4.163
"And which is pleasant practice with slow intuition? There is the case where a certain individual is normally not of an intensely passionate nature. He does not perpetually experience pain & distress born of passion. Or he is normally not of an intensely aversive nature. He does not perpetually experience pain & distress born of aversion. Or he is normally not of an intensely deluded nature. He does not perpetually experience pain & distress born of delusion. These five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear weakly. Because of their weakness, he attains only slowly the immediacy that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called pleasant practice with slow intuition.AN 4.162
"And which is pleasant practice with slow intuition? There is the case where a monk — quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities — enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters & remains in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance. With the fading of rapture he remains equanimous, mindful, & alert, and senses pleasure with the body. He enters & remains in the third jhana, of which the noble ones declare, 'Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.' With the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of joy & distress — he enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. He dwells in dependence on these five strengths of a learner — strength of conviction, strength of conscience, strength of concern, strength of persistence, & strength of discernment — but these five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear weakly. Because of their weakness, he attains only slowly the immediacy that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called pleasant practice with slow intuition. [2]
"And which is pleasant practice with quick intuition? There is the case where a certain individual is normally not of an intensely passionate nature. He does not perpetually experience pain & distress born of passion. Or he is normally not of an intensely aversive nature. He does not perpetually experience pain & distress born of aversion. Or he is normally not of an intensely deluded nature. He does not perpetually experience pain & distress born of delusion. These five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear intensely. Because of their intensity, he attains quickly the immediacy that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called pleasant practice with quick intuition.AN 4.162
"And which is pleasant practice with quick intuition? There is the case where a monk — quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities — enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters & remains in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance. With the fading of rapture he remains equanimous, mindful, & alert, and senses pleasure with the body. He enters & remains in the third jhana, of which the noble ones declare, 'Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.' With the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of joy & distress — he enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. He dwells in dependence on these five strengths of a learner — strength of conviction, strength of conscience, strength of concern, strength of persistence, & strength of discernment — and these five faculties of his — the faculty of conviction, the faculty of persistence, the faculty of mindfulness, the faculty of concentration, the faculty of discernment — appear intensely. Because of their intensity, he attains quickly the immediacy that leads to the ending of the effluents. This is called pleasant practice with quick intuition.
"These are the four modes of practice."AN 4.162
Because the description of pleasant practice here contains the standard jhana formula, while the description of painful practice contains no mention of jhana, it is reasonable to include this as evidence that there is an alternative path to awakening that does not involve the jhanas.

However some people dispute this by defining faculty of concentration as one of the jhanas because of this passage sn48.10;
"And what is the faculty of concentration? There is the case where a monk, a disciple of the noble ones, making it his object to let go, attains concentration, attains singleness of mind. Quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful mental qualities, he enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters & remains in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of composure, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance. With the fading of rapture, he remains equanimous, mindful, & alert, and senses pleasure with the body. He enters & remains in the third jhana, of which the Noble Ones declare, 'Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.' With the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — he enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. This is called the faculty of concentration.
I think that this is easily refuted by an example of a person who has been developing concentration but has not yet entered a jhana. Right before he enters jhana for the first time, is he without concentration faculty at that time? Apparently some people would think so...

This is it for Sutta evidence.

Apart from Puggalapaññatti, there are afaik more references to Ariyans without jhana in the Abhidhamma in particular in the explaination of sukkha
vipassaka (dry-insight) and jhana-labhí (labhí : possessing) Ariyans in reference to the Lokuttara cittas but i am not proficient so someone else will have to confirm and or explain.
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

rightviewftw
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by rightviewftw » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:19 am

Another question one could ask the naysayers is whether or not a person who has developed concentration to the point that he is able to for the first time to enter a jhana, can he then direct his mind to the Deathless, entering the supramundane absorbtion instead of entering the First Jhana?
"He is absorbed dependent neither on earth, liquid, fire, wind, the sphere of the infinitude of space, the sphere of the infinitude of consciousness, the sphere of nothingness, the sphere of neither perception nor non-perception, this world, the next world, nor on whatever is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, or pondered by the intellect — and yet he is absorbed. And to this excellent thoroughbred of a man, absorbed in this way, the gods, together with Indra, the Brahmas, & Pajapati, pay homage even from afar:

'Homage to you, O thoroughbred man.
Homage to you, O superlative man —
you of whom we don't know even what it is
dependent on which
you're absorbed.'"
Given that First Jhana is definitely enough to direct the mind to the Deathless [MN40] and there is actually no need to enter it prior to directing it to the Deathless[ Mv.I.23.5] is not a fair assumption that such one could direct it to the Deathless if his discernment is the strong faculty?

Imo the evidence inferred from the Sutta alone is enough to go beyond reasonable doubt and furthermore the matter is explained explicitly by the Abhidhamma Pitaka which is as far as i know still by far the earliest known to us "commentary" and is actually a part of the Tipitaka even tho it's origin is disputed.

I think that advocating for the non-existence of the dry-insight worker is quite frankly presumptuous!
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by cookiemonster » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:30 am

canadianbuddhist wrote:
Sat Jul 21, 2018 1:23 am
Should every person who is going to attain the Nirvana follow the 1-8 jhanas? Or the jhanas only work for some? For example, I know there were many who attained the Nirvana just by listening to a dhamma talk or cleaning a compond of the monastery? So I feel like working on 1-8 jhanas kinda only specific to some people when they attain the Nirvana and not common to all who attain the nirvana?

Pls explain.
Thank You.
IMO the temporary peace offered by jhana is what allows the mind to effectively practice vipassana to gain the wisdom that leads to permanent peace.

It is my belief that those who attain nibbana without apparently attaining a mastery of jhana are those who already "naturally" possess a peaceful mind in their present lifetime - probably because they've already attained a mastery of jhana in (a) previous birth(s).

rightviewftw
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by rightviewftw » Sun Jul 22, 2018 2:02 am

rightviewftw wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 12:39 am
Now the commentary here says that restlessness concerning the Dhamma is under control and it rerfers to the corruptions of insight, now this would refer to strong discernment faculty knowledge of what is and what is not the Path.
Now for the record i want to clarify that by knowledge of what is and what is not the Path i do not mean the knowledge of an Ariyan which is sometimes referred to in that exact wording but given that the Corruptions of Insight are called such only if they are accompanied by delusion (in example taken to be Path or fruition), having them well under control would mean that one is not deluded in reference to these states and knows that they are not the Path even prior to having realized the Path.
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by budo » Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:13 am

The jhanas are required for anything above sotapanna. Samma Samadhi is the four jhanas. One may practice insight first or samadhi first, but in the end both are required.

rightviewftw
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by rightviewftw » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:42 pm

budo wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:13 am
The jhanas are required for anything above sotapanna.
Hi Sutta support for this friend?
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by DNS » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:36 pm

And what is right concentration? There is the case where a monk; quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful (mental) qualities enters and remains in the first jhana . . . second . . . third . . . fourth . . . this is called right concentration (Samma Samadhi).
(Samyutta Nikaya 45.8)

I tell you, the ending of the mental fermentations depends on the first jhana... the second jhana... the third... the fourth... the dimension of the infinitude of space... the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness... the dimension of nothingness. I tell you, the ending of the mental fermentations depends on the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception.
(Anguttara Nikaya 9.36)

There's no jhana for one with no discernment, no discernment for one with no jhana. But one with both jhana and discernment: he's on the verge of Unbinding.
(Dhammapada 372)

And then I know the Abhidhamma and Commentaries mention or imply of the dry-insight worker; which is why I say there are a number of views within Theravada on this. The Suttas are clear-cut on the importance of jhanas.

2600htz
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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by 2600htz » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:55 pm

canadianbuddhist wrote:
Sat Jul 21, 2018 1:23 am
Should every person who is going to attain the Nirvana follow the 1-8 jhanas? Or the jhanas only work for some? For example, I know there were many who attained the Nirvana just by listening to a dhamma talk or cleaning a compond of the monastery? So I feel like working on 1-8 jhanas kinda only specific to some people when they attain the Nirvana and not common to all who attain the nirvana?

Pls explain.
Thank You.
Hello:

But those people didn´t take the practice of "attaining nirvana just by listening dhamma", it just happened that way.

Its like learning to play the piano: 99% of people first have to learn how the keyboard works, then learn the major keyz, the chords, start playing easy patterns, and get gradually to a level where they are able to really play. But some talented individuals, that 1%, just by listening once, can just sit and play, they are able to play at a basic level instantly.

With the dhamma its the same, some people just listening can get to a sotapanna or sakadagami level (and experience nirvana), but to get into angami or arahant level have to actually do some practice (jhana).

Regards.

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Re: Jhanas and Nirvana

Post by mikenz66 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 6:27 pm

rightviewftw wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:42 pm
budo wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:13 am
The jhanas are required for anything above sotapanna.
Hi Sutta support for this friend?
There is an extensive analysis here: https://www.dhammatalks.net/Books10/Bhi ... ple%20.htm

:heart:
Mike

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