Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

The cultivation of calm or tranquility and the development of concentration
SamKR
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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by SamKR » Tue May 08, 2012 4:49 pm

Buckwheat wrote:
SamKR wrote:* What makes it Samma?
Right concentration is concentrated on withdrawal from craving pleasure, craving becoming, or craving non-becoming.
Thanks for this important point.

According to the Buddha:
There is the case where a monk — quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful qualities — enters and remains in the first jhana: rapture and pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought and evaluation.[...]
In the above quote he has encouraged the monks to enter and remain in rapture and pleasure born from withdrawal (along with directed thought and evaluation). So, it seems that he is suggesting there is a kind of pleasure (different from sense pleasure) that is born from withdrawal, and he is encouraging to cultivate such rapture and pleasure born from withdrawal -- which is a stage of samma samadhi (? first jhana)

SamKR
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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by SamKR » Tue May 08, 2012 4:57 pm

reflection wrote:
SamKR wrote:So, now I think that there need not be unanimity among the practitioners regarding the definition of jhana or samadhi and their practice, and yet they could be heading towards the same goal.
I think that is a wise attitude. But still only personal experience will remove the doubt in the end. Anyway, often doubt is just a hindrance, you can just recognize doubt as doubt and not be too bothered with it.
I agree, thanks.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by Cittasanto » Tue May 08, 2012 8:49 pm

Hi Sam,
SamKR wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:Hi Sam
what about the other aspects of the path? and although Jhana can be mistaken for Nibbana it is not Nibbana.

the Eightfold path should be developed, but it is not itself the final goal!
Hello Cittasanto,

I am not sure if I quite understand your question "what about the other aspects of the path? "

it was more rhetorical than a question proper!
Yes, it seems logical to conclude that the personal experiences of Jhana can be mistaken for different attainments, but if and only if other parts of the eightfold path are ignored to the degree that it is insufficient to have samma ditthi. I can not imagine a person attaining samma samadhi (which should bolster right view) being mistaken about his/her experience. Isn't samma samadhi a cause of right view and vice versa? I think the only critical thing is to find out whether one's samadhi (or its aspects like jhana) is samma or not. I think it will be samma if it is based on samma ditthi and other factors of eightfold path. The noble eight-fold path seems to demand utmost care, balance, and skillfulness of the traveler. Those who lack that will definitely be mistaken.

I agree that the eightfold path should be developed and is not a final goal. The final goal is nibbana. My point is that through the iteration of the eightfold path (as I described in previous path) one reaches the nibbana which is not a path but the end of the path. (After reaching the end of the path you can turn back and see the path you traveled :)).

I am just trying to make sense of the things as I realized that I can not practice with confused mind. I could be very wrong, and would be happy to be corrected.
Sammaditthi is the forerunner, it is, in my opinion, right view which cuts through the greed, hatred, & delusion, with the power of Sammasamadhi.
but just so we are on the same page, Jhana can refer to two different things in meditation, if you have a copy of the Samyutta Nikaya by Bhikkhu Bodhi have a look at the chapter titles, for a good example, but Jhana can mean reflection/meditation as well as Jhana as in the definition of Sammasamadhi.

Samadhi could be described like a journey, right view is like a map, everything is their detailed, mindfulness looks and sees where we are in relation to the map, and effort moves us along the journey, the driving of the car. all these require some form of concentration, which isn't Jhana as in sammasamadhi, but is jhana as in meditation, this could be described as sammasamadhi, the right amount of focus, and is what we in general use day to day, off the cushion, i.e. speaking, acting, working, intention. but it is right view which holds these in check and reduces the likeliness of regret over what we do, say, think... and it is the right amount of focus or Yoniso manasicara (sorry about spelling) which keeps effort and mindfulness working reducing the hindrences so when we aim for the four Jhanas, it is easier.

I hope that makes sense! but like others have said there are differing interpretations of Jhana, and what you were describing (as I was seeing) seamed more like wet Jhana, and dry insight, there is one and the other, and they don't mix fully at least. I do see your description isn't as black and white as I am saying here.
here it is more like the windshield, and wipers, the Sammasamadhi clears the rain off so we can see, and Sammmaditthi is making sure we are going in the right direction, with the rest of the path, as described above, moving us out of the rain (the roots of affection, hatred, delusion in gross form) and to the final destination where we can park up and out of the car (end goal.)
I hope that makes sense also.

so in my view it is a combined movement however right view is the main apparatus both the driver and map. everything else is the complete path including sammasamadhi & sammaditthi.

everyone, please feel free to question or correct!
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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by SamKR » Fri May 11, 2012 8:10 pm

Sammaditthi is the forerunner, it is, in my opinion, right view which cuts through the greed, hatred, & delusion, with the power of Sammasamadhi.
but just so we are on the same page, Jhana can refer to two different things in meditation, if you have a copy of the Samyutta Nikaya by Bhikkhu Bodhi have a look at the chapter titles, for a good example, but Jhana can mean reflection/meditation as well as Jhana as in the definition of Sammasamadhi.
Yes, it has two different meanings. Actually before reading suttas carefully, I always took jhana as just meditation.
Samadhi could be described like a journey, right view is like a map, everything is their detailed, mindfulness looks and sees where we are in relation to the map, and effort moves us along the journey, the driving of the car. all these require some form of concentration, which isn't Jhana as in sammasamadhi, but is jhana as in meditation, this could be described as sammasamadhi, the right amount of focus, and is what we in general use day to day, off the cushion, i.e. speaking, acting, working, intention. but it is right view which holds these in check and reduces the likeliness of regret over what we do, say, think... and it is the right amount of focus or Yoniso manasicara (sorry about spelling) which keeps effort and mindfulness working reducing the hindrences so when we aim for the four Jhanas, it is easier. [...] I hope that makes sense!
Yes, it makes sense.
but like others have said there are differing interpretations of Jhana, and what you were describing (as I was seeing) seamed more like wet Jhana, and dry insight, there is one and the other, and they don't mix fully at least.
My current practice is "dry" vipassana, and currently experiencing constant agitation in mind which would not go away (though trying to "let go" of the desire to get rid of this). So I want to explore the "wet" method too to see if that will help me become more relaxed and tranquil (using suttas as guide).
so in my view it is a combined movement however right view is the main apparatus both the driver and map. everything else is the complete path including sammasamadhi & sammaditthi.
Yes.

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by Rui Sousa » Fri May 11, 2012 11:48 pm

SamKR wrote:Among the different parts of the eight-fold path the one with which I am most confused is samma samadhi. So I have the following questions:
* What is Samma Samadhi actually (in simple words)?
* What does it include besides concentration and tranquility?
* Samadhi is often translated as concentration. Is concentration essential part of samadhi, or can there be samadhi without concentration?
* What makes it Samma?
* Does it refer to tranquil states of mind, or to a process of becoming tranquil?
* Is Samma Samadhi equivalent to jhana or a superset of jhana? If both are not equivalent how are they related?
* Can there be Samma Samadhi without jhana?
1 - Focused mind in a proper mind object. Defining it by its opposite, as mentioned by Buckwheat focusing on porn or sexual fantasies is NOT Samma Samadhi, it is Micca Samadhi (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html)
2 - In my opinion Samma Samadhi is the ability to enter the four Rupa Jhanas, with their different mental factors.
3 - Concentration, samadhi, unification of the mind, siglepointed mind, sharpened mind. All refer to the Jhanas.
4 - Because it is not Micca. For example, entering the Jhanas on Metta meditation is very beneficial for any mind. Focusing on a sexual fantasy, or on harming other beings, is not that good for any mind.
5 - Both.
6 - Previous answer.
7 - I believe not.

Metta
With Metta

SamKR
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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by SamKR » Sun May 13, 2012 1:28 am

Thanks Rui Sousa for your answers. And the link is useful.

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by Cittasanto » Sun May 13, 2012 9:30 am

SamKR wrote:
but like others have said there are differing interpretations of Jhana, and what you were describing (as I was seeing) seamed more like wet Jhana, and dry insight, there is one and the other, and they don't mix fully at least.
My current practice is "dry" vipassana, and currently experiencing constant agitation in mind which would not go away (though trying to "let go" of the desire to get rid of this). So I want to explore the "wet" method too to see if that will help me become more relaxed and tranquil (using suttas as guide).
Hi Sam,
I think the problem with a separation of the two, for some people, is what you describe here, agitation, the dry insight lacks the lubrication of samadhi, so for some people there is an abrasive element to the practice on some level, everything is too course and dusty, things are held to tightly so we can not see it properly, like using a gauntlet to pick up a piece of fine delicate parchment, or turn the pages of a 1000yo manuscript, and the same is true with jhana only, everything is too refined so it can be like trying to keep hold of soap in a bath, you can see it but it is not possible to move it to get a full picture of it. These are forms of Upādāna, grasping, in a wrong way, one can lead to roga the other to dosa, affection & disliking, even if only on a subtle level.

Try dedicating the first portion of each sitting to finding a happy place, a gladdening of the citta, the mind would then be more likely to withdraw from any agitating factors, and be more careful in how it holds objects. like stinging nettles, if just grabbed cause agitation, but if taken hold of correctly can be picked without any sting.
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He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by tiltbillings » Sun May 13, 2012 9:56 am

SamKR wrote:
but like others have said there are differing interpretations of Jhana, and what you were describing (as I was seeing) seamed more like wet Jhana, and dry insight, there is one and the other, and they don't mix fully at least.
My current practice is "dry" vipassana, and currently experiencing constant agitation in mind which would not go away (though trying to "let go" of the desire to get rid of this). So I want to explore the "wet" method too to see if that will help me become more relaxed and tranquil (using suttas as guide).
Trying to let go the desire is probably the problem. Don't worry about it; simply pay attention to the agitation and then to the response to it. Figuratively speaking, of course, step back from it , putting space around it. In letting it be, one's practice can get very "wet," indeed. The division between dry and wet is more apparent than real.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by SamKR » Thu May 17, 2012 5:29 pm

Thank you Cittasanto and tiltbillings for the suggestions.

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by DGDC » Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:46 am

Sammasamadhi is the last item of the Ariyan Eight-item Path [Ariyo Attngiko Maggo]. It is meaningful only to Ariyans. It doesn't make sense for non-Ariyans to discuss it. It is outside their perception and cognition.

There are no Ariyans living in the world today; all living human beings are non-Ariyans.

For non-Ariyans Sammasamadhi is a belief.

Lord Buddha's words on Sammasamadhi, from Sutta Nipata, is as follows: Yam buddhasettho parivannayi sucim; samadhimanantarikannamahu; samadhina tena samo na vijjati; idampi dhamme ratanam panitam; etena saccena suvatthi hotu. [Sutta Nipata, the Small Chapter, verse 4]

Etena Saccena Suvatthi Hotu

D. C. Wijeratna

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by SarathW » Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:28 am

Hi Wijaratna
Your understanding of Noble Eight Fold Path appears to be incorrect.
NEFP is practiced by lay people to Arahants but in a different level.
Samadhi can not be practiced in isolation of other path factors.
Samma Samadhi should be contrast only with Mitya Samadhi.
This matter has been discussed in the following thread.

Has Tiger Woods attain Jhana?


http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... centration" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by The Thinker » Sun Jan 17, 2016 10:19 am

just been reading this subject matter pointed out earlier - http://goo.gl/NP6sKg" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

What a deep discussion it was, which appears to me to turn into a who is your favourite teacher sort of argument, I like Virgo, I think the point about the soil is a good one, and still not sure the mahasi method was clarified clearly, this is very much a clash of individual personality traits, and how we attach or understand different teachers,teachings. Now I am very inexperienced and not at all familiar with the authors, but just reading the above old post as given me inspiration to download a few books to contrast teachers opinions. Thanks. Tilt and virgo :clap:
"Watch your heart, observe. Be the observer, be the knower, not the condition" Ajahn Sumedho volume5 - The Wheel Of Truth

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by Cormac Brown » Tue Feb 02, 2016 2:46 pm

*What is Samma Samadhi actually (in simple words)?

A state in which the whole body is immersed in pleasure and ease, and the mind is secluded from the hindrances. An absence of the grosser forms of dukkha.

* What does it include besides concentration and tranquility?

Its qualities can be a combination of rapture, pleasure and/or equanimity, and in the case of the first jhana, directed thought and evaluation.

* Samadhi is often translated as concentration. Is concentration essential part of samadhi, or can there be samadhi without concentration?

Samadhi is translated by most meditation teachers as concentration. It's as good a word as we seem to have, but it might help if we question our traditionally quite narrow definition of it.

* What makes it Samma?

What makes it right is that it's a blameless, harmless and readily accessible form of pleasure, that places no burdens on anyone. It also provides the basis for liberating insight, which frees one from all bonds and places one in complete security.

* Does it refer to tranquil states of mind, or to a process of becoming tranquil?

Good question. I'd say it's most likely the latter. The descriptions of jhana all suggest that the practitioner is in the process of doing them: s/he "suffuses and fills" the body; "permeates" it. Thanissaro Bhikkhu and Ajaan Lee describe it as a skilful and subtle form of becoming/bhava. Rapture and pleasure, too, are described by the Buddha as mental fabrications, as opposed to "states of mind". I suppose the distinction is that one doesn't just reach jhana and then stop all the 'doing'. The jhana is a doing, just a very subtle form - so subtle that the practitioner might mistakenly think they're not doing anything. This is my understanding.

* Is Samma Samadhi equivalent to jhana or a superset of jhana? If both are not equivalent how are they related?

Equivalent.

* Can there be Samma Samadhi without jhana?

Not to my knowledge. In the descriptions of the Noble Eightfold Path, Samma Samadhi seems always to be described as the jhanas.
“I in the present who am a worthy one, rightly self-awakened, am a
teacher of action, a teacher of activity, a teacher of persistence. But the
worthless man Makkhali contradicts even me, (saying,) ‘There is no
action. There is no activity. There is no persistence.’ "
AN 3.138, trans. Ven. Thanissaro

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by Cormac Brown » Mon Feb 22, 2016 7:06 pm

SamKR wrote:Among the different parts of the eight-fold path the one with which I am most confused is samma samadhi. So I have the following questions:
* What is Samma Samadhi actually (in simple words)?
* What does it include besides concentration and tranquility?
* Samadhi is often translated as concentration. Is concentration essential part of samadhi, or can there be samadhi without concentration?
* What makes it Samma?
* Does it refer to tranquil states of mind, or to a process of becoming tranquil?
* Is Samma Samadhi equivalent to jhana or a superset of jhana? If both are not equivalent how are they related?
* Can there be Samma Samadhi without jhana?
  1. The four jhanas
  2. It includes the jhana factors.
  3. Samadhi is concentration.
  4. That it fits the descriptions of the jhanas.
  5. My understanding is that they are subtle forms of activity, hence: "He suffuses this body...pervades..." "Entering" into each jhana would be the process of becoming tranquil. Each of the jhanas in and of themselves could be called "tranquil states of mind," which all require input from the practitioner in order to maintain them.
  6. Equivalent.
  7. No.
“I in the present who am a worthy one, rightly self-awakened, am a
teacher of action, a teacher of activity, a teacher of persistence. But the
worthless man Makkhali contradicts even me, (saying,) ‘There is no
action. There is no activity. There is no persistence.’ "
AN 3.138, trans. Ven. Thanissaro

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Re: Questions Regarding Samma Samadhi

Post by Cormac Brown » Mon Feb 22, 2016 7:08 pm

Hmm. I seem to have replied twice. Pardon my lapse in mindfulness.
“I in the present who am a worthy one, rightly self-awakened, am a
teacher of action, a teacher of activity, a teacher of persistence. But the
worthless man Makkhali contradicts even me, (saying,) ‘There is no
action. There is no activity. There is no persistence.’ "
AN 3.138, trans. Ven. Thanissaro

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