There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
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budo
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There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by budo » Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:37 am

There is no such thing as "insight practice", there is only Satipatthana (body, feelings, mind, dhamma), and attaining Jhana goes through the 4 satipatthana except for the 4 noble truths which is the most important. The only "insight" practice you can do is the contemplation at the highest stage you've reached which is the 4 noble truths.

So say you sit down and meditate, and you reach first jhana or metta or whatever practice you do, and you feel good as a result, then the contemplation you do is:

"He regards whatever phenomena there that are connected with form, feeling, perception, fabrications, & consciousness, as inconstant, stressful, a disease, a cancer, an arrow, painful, an affliction, alien, a disintegration, an emptiness, not-self."

That is is the fourth stage of satipathanna, it's called "the drawbacks" and is part of the 3rd noble truth.

To get to jhana you first must overcome the 5 hindrances (4th satipathana), to overcome the 5 hindrances you need awareness of feelings (2nd satipatthana) and mind (3rd satipathanna), and you need to calm body fabrications (1st satipathana)

The fourth satipatthana has 5 stages you have to be aware of

- 5 hindrances (first and foremost for attaining jhanas)
- 5 aggregates (for isolating perception/intention)
- 6 fold sense bases / internal media
- 7 factors of awakening
- 4 noble truths (for leading to cessation of dukkha)

The "Drawbacks" contemplation is the 3rd noble truth: "[c] "And what is the noble truth of the cessation of stress? The remainderless fading & cessation, renunciation, relinquishment, release, & letting go of that very craving."

Therefore, insight isn't something you do, it's something that happens as a result of working through the satipatthanas. Which means by attaining jhanas you automatically attain insight, the two are not separable. The Buddha didn't teach "wrong jhana". His teachers didn't teach "wrong jhana" either, his teachers didn't apply the 4 noble truths as he says here:

""There is the case where an individual, withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful qualities, enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. 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 devas of Brahma's retinue. The devas of Brahma's retinue, monks, have a life-span of an eon. 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. This, monks, is the difference, this the distinction, this the distinguishing factor, between an educated disciple of the noble ones and an uneducated run-of-the-mill person, when there is a destination, a reappearing."

The Buddh calls it: The Distinguishing Factor

This is the difference:

""There is the case where an individual, withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful qualities, enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. He regards whatever phenomena there that are connected with form, feeling, perception, fabrications, & consciousness, as inconstant, stressful, a disease, a cancer, an arrow, painful, an affliction, alien, a disintegration, an emptiness, not-self. At the break-up of the body, after death, he reappears in conjunction with the devas of the Pure Abodes. This rebirth is not in common with run-of-the-mill people."

So the difference is Perception - imho the perception of drawbacks is one of the most important suttas: https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html

The dhamma is simple and straight forward if you just read and understand it at the surface level.

Basically if I can sum up the dhamma in one sentence: Metta and the jhanas take you to heaven, the noble truths show you that even heaven is unsatisfying.

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by auto » Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:52 am

Nice post,

Walking around, there is dukkha, trying to sense what i need to do to become 'fresh', doing all sorts of forms i discover that doing a slow motion walking does the thing, inner-sense-feeling accompany with that walking i recognize that feeling or acknowledge and tune into it, it takes the craving away and suffereing goes away.
(If i try to repeat it i can't so the inner feeling was temporary, that phenomena connected to forms is anicca, impermanent, not self, also skandhas or layer of being is that feeling. And that gets destroyed, no more birth).
Done that then later there also arises lokutara, supramundane insight when reflecting what i did. And i know that my life just got easier.

amirite or wrong? karma got lighter so i don't fall so deep into hell?

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by DooDoot » Sat Aug 11, 2018 9:45 pm

budo wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:37 am
attaining Jhana goes through the 4 satipatthana except for the 4 noble truths which is the most important. The only "insight" practice you can do is the contemplation at the highest stage you've reached which is the 4 noble truths.
Bhikkhu Bodhi makes a very strong case the stream-enterer (who has lots of insight) has not yet reached jhana:

The Jhānas and the Lay Disciple According to the Pāli Suttas by Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi
budo wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:37 am
To get to jhana you first must overcome the 5 hindrances (4th satipathana), to overcome the 5 hindrances you need awareness of feelings (2nd satipatthana) and mind (3rd satipathanna), and you need to calm body fabrications (1st satipathana)
I doubt calming the body fabricator (the breathing) can occur with hindrances. I think you first must overcome the 5 hindrances before the 1st satipatthana. In my (limited) reading, only the (fake) MN 10 & DN 22 include the 5 hindrances in the 4th satipathana. For example, MN 118 includes contemplation of: (i) impermanence (unsatisfactoriness & not-self); (ii) fading-away of attachment; (iii) cessation of suffering; & (iv) relinquishment/throwing-back of all self-views; in the 4th satipathana.
budo wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:37 am
Therefore, insight isn't something you do, it's something that happens as a result of working through the satipatthanas. Which means by attaining jhanas you automatically attain insight, the two are not separable.
I agree insight isn't something you do. However, I also think attaining jhana also isn't something you do. If fact, I also think satipatthana also isn't something you do. For example, if I could do Satipatthana, I could immediately do contemplation of rapture; which I can't. I must first calm the breathing to generate rapture. Before this, I must have the right state of mind to calming the breathing. I think the only part of Satipatthana you can do is the following:
.... ardent, clear-comprehending & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world.

MN 10; DN 22; MN 118; etc
I think the only doing you can do is not-doing; is letting go or putting aside. :)
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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by SarathW » Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:24 am

Bhikkhu Bodhi makes a very strong case the stream-enterer (who has lots of insight) has not yet reached jhana:
I strongly disagree with this.
Sila, Samadhi Panna are integrated. (Noble Eightfold Path)
Attaining Sotapatti without any concentration is laughable.
Even observing Sila is a type of Jhana. (lower level)
Sila of a Sotappanna is a very strong Jhana. (not the sense of one-pointedness)
Jhana alone is not sufficient to attain Sotapatti but not the vice-versa.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by DooDoot » Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:55 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:24 am
I strongly disagree with this.
Do you strongly disagree with this?
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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by SarathW » Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:30 am

What I am saying is Sotapanna has at least the first Jhana qualities such as Vitakka, Vicara, Pithy, Sukha, and Ekagata.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by DooDoot » Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:34 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:30 am
What I am saying is Sotapanna has at least the first Jhana qualities such as Vitakka, Vicara, Pithy, Sukha, and Ekagata.
No evidence provided. Often in the suttas, individuals such as the layman Upali (MN 56) attained Sotapanna after debating the Buddha.
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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by SarathW » Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:37 am

No evidence provided.
In Abhidhamma four Ariya stages are mentioned only with Jhana. (ie 20 types of Ariya consciousness)
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by DooDoot » Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:39 am

SarathW wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:37 am
In Abhidhamma four Ariya stages are mentioned only with Jhana. (ie 20 types of Ariya consciousness)
Evidence from the Buddha & sutta.
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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by SarathW » Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:43 am

Evidence from the Buddha & sutta.
Well if you consider Abhidhamma is not Buddha's teaching you are missing something.
If that is the case there is no reason to believe Sutta either.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by budo » Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:05 pm

I highly recommend you guys read the book by Kheminda Thera "Way of Buddhist meditation", he and Soma Thera were one of the original translators of the Vimuttimagga.

He explains why everyone who enters the noble path, whether faith enterer or dhamma enterer from stream entry to arahant, all require at least first jhana for the mind moment it happens in.

The book is free online https://archive.org/details/WayOfBuddhi ... mindaThera

Also concentration is something you do: controlling your awareness and letting go of anything that is not the primary object. This is an action. There is no action in which you instantly call up insight. You can contemplate, that is an action,which may increase the likelihood of an effect called insight to happen.

Or you can do another action which is moving your awareness to whatever enters your senses the strongest and noting it, this isn't what the Buddha taught though.

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by DooDoot » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:41 am

budo wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:05 pm
I highly recommend you guys read the book by Kheminda Thera "Way of Buddhist meditation"... He explains why everyone who enters the noble path, whether faith enterer or dhamma enterer from stream entry to arahant, all require at least first jhana for the mind moment it happens in.
Not interested but thanks. The book sounds very wrong to me.
SarathW wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:43 am
Well if you consider Abhidhamma is not Buddha's teaching you are missing something.
If that is the case there is no reason to believe Sutta either.
Sutta refers to ten fetters, for which the 6th & 7th are lust for jhana. If a stream-enterer can enter jhana; I imagine lust for jhana would be a fetter for a stream-enterer.
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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by SarathW » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:47 am

I imagine lust for jhana would be a fetter for a stream-enterer.
Perhaps this may be the case considering there seven more fetters to be eliminated.
However Buddha allowed monk to enjoy the happiness of Jhana.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by DooDoot » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:51 am

SarathW wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:47 am
Perhaps this may be the case considering there seven more fetters to be eliminated.
Jhana also is important for ending the tendency of craving for sensual pleasures. If a stream-enterer was expert in jhana, they would probably end the first 5 fetters. I think Bhikkhu Bodhi wrote a paper that is difficult to fault.
SarathW wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:47 am
However Buddha allowed monk to enjoy the happiness of Jhana.
Buddha said "enjoyment" is a cause of suffering. :roll:
It’s the craving that leads to future rebirth, mixed up with relishing and greed, taking pleasure in various different realms. That is,

yāyaṃ taṇhā ponobbhavikā nandirāgasahagatā tatratatrābhinandinī, seyyathidaṃ—

https://suttacentral.net/sn56.11/en/sujato
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Re: There is no such thing as insight practice. [Was:insight requires access concentration?]

Post by SarathW » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:55 am

However Buddha allowed monk to enjoy the happiness of Jhana.
However Buddha allowed practicing Jhana to monks.
:sage:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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