samatha during vipassana

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
Post Reply
User avatar
jajas
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2010 2:19 pm
Location: amsterdam

samatha during vipassana

Post by jajas » Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:12 pm

I came across the term "dry vipassana" It was explained to me that in this type off mahasi-style vipassana the use of samatha during the vipassana meditation is discouraged. As it happens I rarely use samatha during my vipassana meditation. Does anyone know of teachers how don`t see disadvantage in using Sanatha during vipassana meditation? Does anyone have views on this subject?

User avatar
budo
Posts: 984
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 12:16 am
Location: The world

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by budo » Mon Dec 31, 2018 5:39 pm

I don't get how it would be discouraged, would you catch yourself feeling calm and joyful and reprimand yourself or something? Calm and joy are enlightenment factors. At worst you should just accept it without getting attached to it.

Take a look at this thai forest resource https://www.arrowriver.ca/dhamma/bojjhang.html

User avatar
jajas
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2010 2:19 pm
Location: amsterdam

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by jajas » Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:15 am

what i mean is the use of samatha meditation, meaning concentrating on concepts to calm the mind instead of watching the paramatha dhamma's during vipassana practice.

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 4229
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by DooDoot » Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:49 am

jajas wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:12 pm
Does anyone have views on this subject?
Sure. My personal view on this subject is I don't understand how "dry vipassana" can exist. My impression is "dry vipassana" is something construed by meditation practitioners whose minds are loaded with hindrances so that the mind never calms. For example, sexual desire arises and a few minutes later the dry meditator notes: "sexual desire has arisen in me". Then anger arises and a few minutes later the dry medtitator notes: "Sexual desire has ceased; anger has arisen in me". Then a few minutes or hours later the dry meditator thinks: "Sexual desire & anger are impermanent. I am now a stream-enterer because I retrospectively concluded these hindrances are impermanent." Then the dry meditator starts a vipassana centre in the USA, teaching people to watch the impermanence & flow of emotions with bare awareness; called 'thoughts without a thinker'.

However, in the Pali suttas, it is generally explained vipassana results in letting go & dissolving of mental defilement, as follows:
Seeing thus, the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones grows disenchanted with form, disenchanted with feeling, disenchanted with perception, disenchanted with fabrications, disenchanted with consciousness. Disenchanted, he becomes dispassionate.

SN 22.59
And what is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents? There is the case where a monk remains focused on arising & falling away with reference to the five clinging-aggregates: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its passing away. Such is feeling, such its origination, such its passing away. Such is perception, such its origination, such its passing away. Such are fabrications, such their origination, such their passing away. Such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.' This is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents.

AN 4.41
In other words, if real vipassana occurs, i think it must naturally result in samatha (calm). I think it is very difficult to separate samatha & vipassana. Each, if properly developed, will enhance each other. However, if wrong developed, each will inhibit each other.
And these two qualities proceed in tandem:
Tassime dve dhammā yuganandhā vattanti—

tranquility and insight.
samatho ca vipassanā ca.

MN 149
For example, developing a type of samatha by forcefully, narrowly & constrictedly focusing on a single object will generally inhibit vipassana. But if the mind is calm, quiet & open; it can also develop deeper calm (samatha). Or if the mind has real vipassana, it should become calmer (samatha). If vipassana does not make the mind calmer & more peaceful, then what is the point of it? :shrug:
There is always an official executioner. If you try to take his place, It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood. If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter, you will only hurt your hand.

https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/paticcasamuppada
https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/anapanasati

User avatar
rightviewftw
Posts: 2427
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:50 pm
Contact:

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by rightviewftw » Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:13 am

jajas wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:12 pm
Does anyone know of teachers how don`t see disadvantage in using Sanatha during vipassana meditation? Does anyone have views on this subject?
Satipatthana Sutta contains instruction on what is nowadays referred to as vipassana as well as what is nowadays referred to as samatha and more. One can and should attempt to practice as comperhensively as possible imo. One can develop samatha and vipassana in tandem or with one preceding the other.
Yuganaddha Sutta: In Tandem

On one occasion Ven. Ananda was staying in Kosambi, at Ghosita's monastery. There he addressed the monks, "Friends!"

"Yes, friend," the monks responded.

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?

"There is the case where a monk has developed insight preceded by tranquillity. As he develops insight preceded by tranquillity, 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.

"Then there is the case where a monk has developed tranquillity preceded by insight. As he develops tranquillity preceded by insight, 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.

"Then there is the case where a monk has developed tranquillity in tandem with insight. As he develops tranquillity in tandem with insight, 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.

"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."
Samadhi Sutta: Concentration (Tranquillity and Insight)
translated from the Pali by
Thanissaro Bhikkhu
© 1998
X
The updated version is freely available at
This version of the text might be out of date. Please click here for more information

"Monks, these four types of individuals are to be found existing in the world. Which four?

"There is the case of the individual who has attained internal tranquillity of awareness, but not insight into phenomena through heightened discernment. Then there is the case of the individual who has attained insight into phenomena through heightened discernment, but not internal tranquillity of awareness. Then there is the case of the individual who has attained neither internal tranquillity of awareness nor insight into phenomena through heightened discernment. And then there is the case of the individual who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment.

"The individual who has attained internal tranquillity of awareness, but not insight into phenomena through heightened discernment, should approach an individual who has attained insight into phenomena through heightened discernment and ask him: 'How should fabrications be regarded? How should they be investigated? How should they be seen with insight?' The other will answer in line with what he has seen & experienced: 'Fabrications should be regarded in this way. Fabrications should be investigated in this way. Fabrications should be seen in this way with insight.' Then eventually he [the first] will become one who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment.

"As for the individual who has attained insight into phenomena through heightened discernment, but not internal tranquillity of awareness, he should approach an individual who has attained internal tranquillity of awareness... and ask him, 'How should the mind be steadied? How should it be made to settle down? How should it be unified? How should it be concentrated?' The other will answer in line with what he has seen & experienced: 'The mind should be steadied in this way. The mind should be made to settle down in this way. The mind should be unified in this way. The mind should be concentrated in this way.' Then eventually he [the first] will become one who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment.

"As for the individual who has attained neither internal tranquillity of awareness nor insight into phenomena through heightened discernment, he should approach an individual who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment... and ask him, 'How should the mind be steadied? How should it be made to settle down? How should it be unified? How should it be concentrated? How should fabrications be regarded? How should they be investigated? How should they be seen with insight?' The other will answer in line with what he has seen & experienced: 'The mind should be steadied in this way. The mind should be made to settle down in this way. The mind should be unified in this way. The mind should be concentrated in this way. Fabrications should be regarded in this way. Fabrications should be investigated in this way. Fabrications should be seen in this way with insight.' Then eventually he [the first] will become one who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment.

"As for the individual who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment, his duty is to make an effort in establishing ('tuning') those very same skillful qualities to a higher degree for the ending of the (mental) fermentations.

"These are four types of individuals to be found existing in the world."
DooDoot wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:49 am
jajas wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:12 pm
Does anyone have views on this subject?
In other words, if real vipassana occurs, i think it must naturally result in samatha (calm).
sigh...
( Tatiyasamādhisuttaṃ )

Cattāro'me bhikkhave puggalā santo saṃvijjamānā lokasmiṃ. Katame cattāro?

Idha bhikkhave ekacco puggalo lābhī hoti ajjhattaṃ cetosamathassa, na lābhī adhipaññādhammavipassanāya.

Idha pana bhikkhave ekacco puggalo lābhī hoti adhipaññādhammavipassanāya, na lābhī ajjhattaṃ cetosamathassa.

Idha pana bhikkhave ekacco puggalo neva lābhī hoti ajjhattaṃ cetosamathassa, na lābhī adhipaññādhammavipassanāya.

Idha pana bhikkhave ekacco puggalo lābhī ceva hoti ajjhattaṃ cetosamathassa, lābhī ca adhipaññādhammavipassanāya.

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 4229
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by DooDoot » Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:20 am

rightviewftw wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:13 am
Satipatthana Sutta contains instruction on what is nowadays referred to as vipassana as well as what is nowadays referred to as samatha and more. One can and should attempt to practice as comperhensively as possible imo.
Many read this Satipatthana Sutta although most do not obtain the result of the sutta within 7 days; let alone within 7 years. Why don't you report back to me in 7 years time and advise me of your progress?
rightviewftw wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:13 am
Tatiyasamādhisuttaṃ

https://suttacentral.net/an4.94/en/sujato
The sutta contradicts Dhamma principles. Its just one sutta from thousands. Its suspect.
Last edited by DooDoot on Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
There is always an official executioner. If you try to take his place, It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood. If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter, you will only hurt your hand.

https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/paticcasamuppada
https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/anapanasati

User avatar
rightviewftw
Posts: 2427
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:50 pm
Contact:

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by rightviewftw » Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:22 am

DooDoot wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:20 am
rightviewftw wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:13 am
Satipatthana Sutta contains instruction on what is nowadays referred to as vipassana as well as what is nowadays referred to as samatha and more. One can and should attempt to practice as comperhensively as possible imo.
Many read this Satipatthana Sutta although most do not obtain the result of the sutta.
rightviewftw wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:13 am
Tatiyasamādhisuttaṃ

https://suttacentral.net/an4.94/en/sujato
The sutta contradicts Dhamma principles. Its just one sutta from thousands. Its suspect.
lol it only contradicts your wrong views xD

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 4229
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by DooDoot » Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:23 am

rightviewftw wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:22 am
lol it only contradicts your wrong views xD
No. It contradicts the core suttas I posted, particularly the most important sutta, namely, SN 22.59. To requote:
Seeing thus, the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones grows disenchanted with form, disenchanted with feeling, disenchanted with perception, disenchanted with fabrications, disenchanted with consciousness. Disenchanted, he becomes dispassionate.

SN 22.59

And what is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents? There is the case where a monk remains focused on arising & falling away with reference to the five clinging-aggregates: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its passing away. Such is feeling, such its origination, such its passing away. Such is perception, such its origination, such its passing away. Such are fabrications, such their origination, such their passing away. Such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.' This is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents.

AN 4.41
Since SN 22.59 is probably the most important sutta in the Canon, it would be wrong view to give priority to AN 9.34; an obscure sutta hidden in the AN. Each to their own. :roll:
There is always an official executioner. If you try to take his place, It is like trying to be a master carpenter and cutting wood. If you try to cut wood like a master carpenter, you will only hurt your hand.

https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/paticcasamuppada
https://soundcloud.com/doodoot/anapanasati

santa100
Posts: 3367
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2011 10:55 pm

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by santa100 » Tue Jan 01, 2019 3:02 am

jajas wrote:As it happens I rarely use samatha during my vipassana meditation. Does anyone know of teachers how don`t see disadvantage in using Sanatha during vipassana meditation?
Per Ven. Gunaratana's "The Jhanas", there're still elements of Samatha even during Vipassana meditation for what's called "momentary concentration"/khanika samadhi. So they don't seem to be mutually exclusive of each other.

User avatar
SkillfulA
Posts: 79
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 10:53 am

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by SkillfulA » Tue Jan 01, 2019 3:16 am

jajas wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:15 am
what i mean is the use of samatha meditation, meaning concentrating on concepts to calm the mind instead of watching the paramatha dhamma's during vipassana practice.
Samatha during vipassana can happen unintended as well intended/induced.
When you watch the ada qualities of paramatha dhammas during vipassana practice it can happen that the mind drops into samadhi (samadhi characteristics become suddenly predominant in experience instead of eg the discernment of arising&passing of dhammas).
If you already know the triggers of samadhi then you can switch during vipassana to samadhi in an intended way. As well both can be present at he same time (no hindrances/ non wavering/ stillness of mind + clear discernment/seeing of ada qualities of experience) which is the ideal mode of experience you are practicing for.

User avatar
mikenz66
Posts: 16578
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: Aotearoa, New Zealand

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by mikenz66 » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:37 am

jajas wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:12 pm
I came across the term "dry vipassana" It was explained to me that in this type off mahasi-style vipassana the use of samatha during the vipassana meditation is discouraged. As it happens I rarely use samatha during my vipassana meditation. Does anyone know of teachers how don`t see disadvantage in using Sanatha during vipassana meditation? Does anyone have views on this subject?
I don't think that's an accurate characterisation. "Dry" means "without absorption" (full jhana), not without the jhana factors, which are essential to insight. See the Visuddhimagga for a detailed discussion, or this chapter of U Pandita's book:
http://aimwell.org/inthisverylife.html# ... sanaJhanas
Some teachers may well discourage samatha, since there are thousands of people teaching variations of the Mahasi approach, but that hasn't been my personal experience.

:heart:
Mike

paul
Posts: 1512
Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 11:27 pm
Location: Cambodia

Re: samatha during vipassana

Post by paul » Tue Jan 01, 2019 5:23 am

As well as the definition of bare insight, please note that insight can produce rapture and can therefore supply an alternative nutriment to feelings of the flesh:

sukkha-vipassaka: 'one supported by bare insight', is the commentarial term for one who, without having attained any of the meditative absorptions (jhāna, q.v.), has realized only by the support of insight (vipassanā, q.v.) one or several of the supermundane paths (s. ariyapuggala). In Vis.M. XVIII, he is called suddha-vipassanā-yānika, as distinguished from 'one who has tranquillity as vehicle' (samathayānika, q.v.). Though the primary meaning of sukkha as intended here is as stated above, subcommentaries (e.g. D. Tīkā) employ also the literal meaning of sukkha, i.e. 'dry': "His insight is dry, rough, unmoistened by the moisture of tranquillity meditation." This justifies a frequent rendering of this term by 'dry-visioned' or 'having dry insight', which, however, should not lead to misconceptions about the nature of insight meditation as being 'dry' or 'merely intellectual', while in fact the development of insight will produce rapture (pīti) and a sense of urgency (saṃvega) in the meditator. "---"Buddhist Dictionary, Nyanatiloka

Temperament determines whether the practitioner is naturally inclined to serenity or insight. All the western authors from the Sri Lankan school, such as Bikkhu Bodhi, Nyanatiloka and Analayo give precedence to insight as the only factor to remove ignorance.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: LaughingBannermen and 30 guests