Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

The cultivation of calm or tranquility and the development of concentration
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Dinsdale » Tue May 06, 2014 9:20 am

Zom wrote:Suttas say thay 5 senses are absent only in the arupa-spheres. So, as it seems, sound can be heard in 1-4 jhanas.
8. "It may be that, with the entire transcending of perceptions of corporeality,[13] with the disappearance of perceptions of sense-response,'[14] with non-attention to perceptions of variety,[15] thinking: 'Space is infinite,' some monk enters upon and abides in the sphere of infinite space;
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Kumara » Tue May 06, 2014 9:31 am

mikenz66 wrote:
Kumara wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:Interesting stuff, Bhante. Surely, even in the passage you quote, the statement "quite secluded..." does not necessarily imply oblivion. I imagine a careful reading of the Pali might be necessary, which is beyond my abilities.
The English translation is okay. Take note that what one is "quite secluded" from is sense desires or sensuality (as Aj Thanissaro prefers, and I second it), and not from sense objects. This is made explicit in Nibbedhika Sutta quoted above.
Sorry, I'm not quite sure about your meaning. Are you agreeing that the VM passage doesn't necessarily have to be interpreted as not being able to hear, etc? As I said, just reading the English translation, it's not at all clear to me that it is saying that. But I may be missing something.
I guess the point you're missing is that the part “Quite secluded from sense desires, secluded from unprofitable things he enters upon and dwells in the first jhāna, which is accompanied by applied and sustained thought with happiness and bliss born of seclusion” is an extract (translated of course) of the standard phrase for the first jhana as commonly found in the Suttas.
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by mikenz66 » Tue May 06, 2014 9:42 am

Yes, I get that. And I presume you are saying that that statement does not necessarily imply that one cannot hear (etc) in jhana. And I would agree.

What I don't get is why the VM text you quoted implies that one can't hear in jhana. It seems like a rather obscure argument if I just read the English.

Sorry, I am probably missing something obvious...

Of course, Robert's quotation from the Abhidhamma is quite clear about the Classical Theravada interpretation.

I guess another interesting question (at least for me!) is whether the argument from the "deep sutta jhana" people (Ajahn Brahm, Sylvester, etc) is the same argument as in the Commentary.

:anjali:
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daverupa
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by daverupa » Tue May 06, 2014 9:52 am

Kumara wrote:
daverupa wrote:
Kumara wrote:The lack of clarity is well clarified in Tapussa Sutta, in which we find details of how the Ascetic Gotama progressed through the jhānas. It's among the suttas that the Vism's understanding can't fit in.
That sutta describes the four jhanas and the other five attainments as sequential, but this is at odds with other suttas that describe only the four jhanas without equanimity being a problem, at odds with suttas that described the jhanas as unique to the Buddha's rose-apple experience & the Dhamma, at odds with an early Nikayic weltenschaung which sees these other attainments as among the common sramana stock, two methods of which the Buddha explicitly rejected...

There are numerous problems here, so using this sutta on its own doesn't generate much confidence in strong conclusions, for me.
I've trouble understanding. Can you be clearer?
Suttas that people use to understand jhana, but which incorporate the formless attainments, are suttas I suspect of being late & rather massaged.
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Kumara » Tue May 06, 2014 10:06 am

robertk wrote:
Kumara wrote:
robertk wrote:how could sound be experienced in jhana when there is total absorption in the object of the jhana.

The Tipitika (let alone Visuddhimagga ) specifically says that sound cannot be experienced while in Jhana .
Please offer the reference.
Katthavatthu PTS translation by Aung and Davids pages 331-332.the seventh book of the ABhiddhamma (and part of the Tipitika)


It is stated that a heretical sect thought sound could be heard in jhana. This gives the Commentary explanation below
XV1118 Of Hearing in Jhana
From the commentary [by Buddhaghosa] Controverted point - That one who has attained jhana hears sound."The opinion is held by some - the Pubbaseilyans , for instance- that because the Exalted one called sound a thorn to first jhana, and if sound if not heard cannot be thorn in the flesh of one who had attained that state, it was inferable that such a one was able to hear.

It takes over a page for the Theravada to show why this is wrong
Oh, wow! I'm not the first to make such an argument. :-)

Thanks, Robert. Since you're referring to Katthavatthu, I've to concede that it's part of the Theravada Tipitaka. Nonetheless, bear in mind that this book supposedly came about during the time of King Asoka, when the meaning of the word "jhana" (along with many other concepts) has become controversial among different sanghas. We can say Ven Moggaliputta Tissa is correct to assert that sound can't be heard in first jhana. He's simply referring to the type of jhana accepted by his sangha.

Anyway, if you're open to this, I suggest reading Moggallanasamyutta, SN40.1-8. That may clarify the matter for you. You can also refer to Tapussa Sutta (AN9.41) and Nibbānasukha Sutta (AN9.34) where you'll find something similar. The basic idea is that jhanas of the Suttas don't have well defined lines between them. E.g, "... I entered and dwelled in the second jhana.... While I was dwelling in this state, perception and attention accompanied by thought occurred in me and I felt it as an afflic­tion." (CDB p1311-2)
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Kumara » Tue May 06, 2014 10:12 am

mikenz66 wrote:What I don't get is why the VM text you quoted implies that one can't hear in jhana. It seems like a rather obscure argument if I just read the English.

Sorry, I am probably missing something obvious...
It's okay. I doubt you'd need it for your awakening. :-) I did include that only as an appendix in my book for a reason: It's only for the 'komplikated' type of people. So, you're spared!
I guess another interesting question (at least for me!) is whether the argument from the "deep sutta jhana" people (Ajahn Brahm, Sylvester, etc) is the same argument as in the Commentary.
You'll have to ask them. :-)
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Kumara » Tue May 06, 2014 10:24 am

daverupa wrote:
Kumara wrote:I've trouble understanding. Can you be clearer?
Suttas that people use to understand jhana, but which incorporate the formless attainments, are suttas I suspect of being late & rather massaged.
OIC. They could be later additions/editions. I've wondered about them too. Why speak of these states since they aren't necessary for liberation, huh? Anyway, for practical purposes, I don't bother about them.

Let me thrown in something else for you to suspect further (but not for further discussions here, okay?) What if the Katthavatthu sort of jhanas are actually formless attainments? hmm...
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Zom » Tue May 06, 2014 10:43 am

That sutta describes the four jhanas and the other five attainments as sequential, but this is at odds with other suttas that describe only the four jhanas without equanimity being a problem, at odds with suttas that described the jhanas as unique to the Buddha's rose-apple experience & the Dhamma, at odds with an early Nikayic weltenschaung which sees these other attainments as among the common sramana stock, two methods of which the Buddha explicitly rejected...

There are numerous problems here, so using this sutta on its own doesn't generate much confidence in strong conclusions, for me.
There are no problems here at all. The picture is: young prince Siddhattha spontaneously entered 1st jhana sitting under the tree. That was quite vivid experience that he remembered (however, it seems, he didn't get any jhana practice knowledge at this moment!). Later on he went to Alara & Uddaka. They tought him how to develop these jhanas, so even to reach 4th arupa-sphere. He mastered that quickly. However, he was not satisfied with this goal of spiritual life, because he saw that these attainments still lead to rebirth and are not permanent. What is more, it seems, he was not satisfied with the path too, because of the jhanic bliss that he feared (feared probably because the mainstream samana idea of that time was the "harsh asceticism", but not "pleasure asceticism"). So, not satisfied and still in doubts, he left those teachers and went to other teachers and samanas who practised harsh asceticism, "self-mortification". He mastered all that, spending several years on different harsh practices. Still, he was not satisfied again, he didn't reach anything, though did it very well. So he was in confusion and searched for a hint. And this hint poped up in his mind - his first jhanic experience. Sutta says: "Why do I fear this pleasure that has nothing to do with unwholesome?" This sentence is important. We see, that he knew two things already: "there is a bliss in jhana" and "this bliss is not connected with unwholesome things". He couldn't have got this insight if he didn't practise this long enough, but he did, because he did practise 1st-2nd-3rd-4th jhanas under Alara & Uddaka. So this sentence "Why do I fear this pleasure that has nothing to do with unwholesome?" refers to his jhana practice under those teachers, not to his sudden experience when he was a boy. From here he realised that he was on the right track from the very beginning, and so decided to go this path again. Suttas say even about his additional knowledge about jhanas: He knew they cannot be reached with weak body. Again, he must have gotten this knowledge under constant practice with Alara & Uddaka. Later, when he gained enlightenment, Alara & Uddaka were the first two persons whom he wished to teach. Again, this is very important. Why? Because this shows that those two were very near nibbana, they too were on the right track. More to that, in some sutta (AN 10.29) Buddha says, that those, who realized themselves and teach others how to reach 4th arupa-sphere, got the highest spiritual purity outside buddha-dhamma. Again, Buddha refers to such teachers as Alara & Uddaka here.

So, everything is quite perfect with that his remembrance and his training under first two teachers 8-)

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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by robertk » Tue May 06, 2014 10:56 am

Kumara wrote: Anyway, if you're open to this, I suggest reading Moggallanasamyutta, SN40.1-8. That may clarify the matter for you. You can also refer to Tapussa Sutta (AN9.41) and Nibbānasukha Sutta (AN9.34) where you'll find something similar. The basic idea is that jhanas of the Suttas don't have well defined lines between them. E.g, "... I entered and dwelled in the second jhana.... While I was dwelling in this state, perception and attention accompanied by thought occurred in me and I felt it as an afflic­tion." (CDB p1311-2)
Dear Ven Kumara
this is showing that in the lower jhanas certain mental factors are present. In the higher jhanas these mental factors get dropped off and so each successive jhana is more refined than the last.

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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by daverupa » Tue May 06, 2014 1:33 pm

Zom wrote:The picture is: young prince Siddhattha spontaneously entered 1st jhana sitting under the tree.
Okay.
That was quite vivid experience that he remembered (however, it seems, he didn't get any jhana practice knowledge at this moment!).
That's something of an unconjecturable, though his ability to assess the formless attainments ('This Dhamma leads not to disenchantment, to dispassion, to cessation...') tells me he maybe learned something after all. In any event, all he's ultimately going to need to do with this is recollect the factors of the experience as he later assesses various routes to awakening.
Later on he went to Alara & Uddaka. They tought him how to develop these jhanas, so even to reach 4th arupa-sphere.
This begs the question: the texts say those teachers taught certain formless attainments, but they do not mention the four jhanas at all.
He mastered that quickly. However, he was not satisfied with this goal of spiritual life, because he saw that these attainments still lead to rebirth and are not permanent. What is more, it seems, he was not satisfied with the path too, because of the jhanic bliss that he feared (feared probably because the mainstream samana idea of that time was the "harsh asceticism", but not "pleasure asceticism").
Yes, they only lead to a concomitant reappearance. In MN 36 the Bodhisatta recognizes that one must be withdrawn from sensuality in both body & mind, and this is what sets him on his ascetic journeys.

So he searches for a hint, as you say, but he's familiar with his jhanic experience and - as the other samanas would have agreed - such pleasure was off-target. But now it's been years doing formless meditations and then years of ascetic practices, and he wonders about other routes to awakening, and recalls rose-apple jhana.

It's now that he recognizes that there was a pleasure that wasn't connected with sensuality but which was based on seclusion from sensuality: this insight took years to form up, including the realization that physical and mental seclusion from sensuality was necessary & the recollection that jhana, while pleasurable, fit the bill - quite to the contrary of samana assumptions at this time. (This pleasure, we know, is precisely not to be feared, but to be cultivated.)

Anyway, he recollects the rose-apple experience, not any training in formless attainments.

---

That his first two teachers were first in his mind to instruct can be read a number of ways; that they would easily have understood doesn't mean anything about jhana, only about their ability to grasp sammaditthi as stream-enterers, which doesn't require jhana at all.

---
AN 10.29 wrote:(9) “Bhikkhus, there are some ascetics and brahmins who proclaim supreme purification. Of those who proclaim supreme purification, this is the foremost, namely, by completely surmounting the base of nothingness, one enters and dwells in the base of neither-perception-nor-non-perception. They teach their Dhamma for the direct knowledge and realization of this. There are beings who assert thus. But even for those who assert thus, there is alteration; there is change. Seeing this thus, the instructed noble disciple becomes disenchanted with it; being disenchanted, he becomes dispassionate toward the foremost, not to speak of what is inferior.

(10) “Bhikkhus, there are some ascetics and brahmins who proclaim supreme nibbāna in this very life. Of those who proclaim supreme nibbāna in this very life, this is the foremost, namely, emancipation through non-clinging after one has seen as they really are the origin and passing away, the gratification, danger, and escape in regard to the six bases for contact.
That sutta reads like a list of outsider practices; and the formless attainment is explicitly said to be so.

Jhanas aren't mentioned at all...?

---

So jhana is a state with rupa, but this rupa might just be those dhammas of dhamma-mano-vinnana, and in this sense would easily count as a colloquially 'formless' state.

Getting into first jhana while enduring certain sounds (or pain, & probably any intense sensual input) is thorny. Many are the stories of falling away from attaining jhana due to pain, for those who had not yet attained nibbana.

In this, while no sound-ear-vinnana would occur, since the ear & other senses have recourse to the mind, the dhammas there might have certain mental sound components, which I think muddies the phenomenological waters.
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Zom » Tue May 06, 2014 3:10 pm

This begs the question: the texts say those teachers taught certain formless attainments, but they do not mention the four jhanas at all.
Because they mention only highest attainment. You can't reach highest one without mastering lower first. Arupa-attainments are based on 4th jhana and have 4th jhana factors as many texts say, but no need to mention that in that particular sutta about Alara & Uddaka.
Anyway, he recollects the rose-apple experience, not any training in formless attainments.
This is because he recollected only "the path hint", not the path itself. Presumably, he was searching for some hint, for some clue, in some memories from very distant past, and when he directed his mind there, to this distant past, he recalled what...? Exactly - jhanic experience. So he acknowledged, that Alara and Uddaka method was actually right, not wrong (though he mistakenly thought otherwise at first). Again, there are many-many suttas that do confirm that, where Buddha says that ending of defilements depends on all jhanas, including arupa ones. For example, AN 11.16 mention eleven doors to Deathless, and arupa-spheres are also mentioned there as doors to Deathless. This is just one sutta, but there are many many more.
That his first two teachers were first in his mind to instruct can be read a number of ways; that they would easily have understood doesn't mean anything about jhana, only about their ability to grasp sammaditthi as stream-enterers, which doesn't require jhana at all.
They were in his mind precisely because of "highest purity". And "highest purity" was gained by them via jhanas as AN 10.29 says.
That sutta reads like a list of outsider practices; and the formless attainment is explicitly said to be so.
Jhanas aren't mentioned at all...?
Sure, because 4 jhanas are inferior attainments. Btw, DN 1 mention that non-buddhist ascetics also attained 1-4 jhanas and considered them "nibbana". So, if we think this way, we may also say that 4 jhanas are also "outsider practices" .)

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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Kumara » Wed May 07, 2014 2:19 am

robertk wrote:
Kumara wrote: Anyway, if you're open to this, I suggest reading Moggallanasamyutta, SN40.1-8. That may clarify the matter for you. You can also refer to Tapussa Sutta (AN9.41) and Nibbānasukha Sutta (AN9.34) where you'll find something similar. The basic idea is that jhanas of the Suttas don't have well defined lines between them. E.g, "... I entered and dwelled in the second jhana.... While I was dwelling in this state, perception and attention accompanied by thought occurred in me and I felt it as an afflic­tion." (CDB p1311-2)
Dear Ven Kumara
this is showing that in the lower jhanas certain mental factors are present. In the higher jhanas these mental factors get dropped off and so each successive jhana is more refined than the last.
See highlighted words above.
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Sylvester » Wed May 07, 2014 3:26 am

Yes, sounds can be heard in the jhanas, but only as noted in this situation outlined by Ven Analayo -
At Vin III 109, some monks accused Moggallãna to have falsely claimed attainment, because he had stated that
while being in the “imperturbable concentration” (i.e. fourth jhãna or an immaterial attainment) he had heard sounds.
The fact that this led the monks to accuse him of false claims shows that the impossibility of hearing sound during deep absorption
was generally accepted among the monks. However, the Buddha exonerated Moggallãna, explaining that it was
possible to hear sound even during such a deep level of jhãna, if the attainment was impure (aparisuddho).
Sp II 513 explains that because he had not fully overcome the obstructions to absorption, Moggallãna’s attainment
was not stable and thus the hearing took place in a moment of instability of the
concentration.

Satipatthana: The Direct Path to Realization, p 91
The Tapussa Sutta, AN 9.41 is in fact quite a useful study in just how absorbed a sutta jhana (versus the English jhanas) is supposed to be :stirthepot: . It may be read in conjunction with AN 10.72 to get a sense of what a "thorn" (kaṇṭaka) is.

In AN 10.72, we get this listing -
Pavi­vekā­rāmassa saṅga­ṇikā­rāmatā kaṇṭako, asu­bhani­mittā­nu­yogaṃ anuyuttassa subhani­mittā­nuyogo kaṇṭako, indriyesu guttadvārassa visūkadassanaṃ kaṇṭako, brahma­cari­yassa mātugāmūpacāro kaṇṭako, paṭhamassa jhānassa saddo kaṇṭako, dutiyassa jhānassa vitakkavicārā kaṇṭakā, tatiyassa jhānassa pīti kaṇṭako, catutthassa jhānassa assāsapassāso kaṇṭako, saññā­ve­dayi­ta­nirodha­samā­pattiyā saññā ca vedanā ca kaṇṭako rāgo kaṇṭako doso kaṇṭako moho kaṇṭako.

To one who wants seclusion, company is a thorn. To one developing the sign of loathsomeness, an agreeable sign is a thorn. To one protected in the mental faculties, sight seeing is a thorn. To a man leading a celebate life, the behavior of a woman is a torn. To one in the first jhana, sounds are a thorn. To one in the second jhana, thinking and examining are a thorn. To one in the third jhana, piti is a thorn. To one in the fourth jhana, in breathing and out breathing is a thorn. To one attaining the cessation of perceptions and feelings, perceptions and feelings are a thorn. Greed is a thorn. Hate is a thorn and delusion is a thorn.

translation from - http://www.leighb.com/an10_72.htm
I have highlighted the treatment of 3 jhanas in this sutta, as they may be usefully compared to AN 9.41 which has this repeating structure -
1. See the drawback of a state
2. Pursue this understanding
3 Understand the reward of giving it up
4 Familiarize with it
5 Gravitate towards the opposing and higher state, grow confident, steadfast, & firm, seeing it as peace
6 Attain the higher state
7 Be afflicted at that time (iminā vihārena viharato) with an intrusive state.
According to AN 9.41, the intrusion into the First Jhana is kāmasahagatā sañ­ñāmana­sikārā, the intrusion into the Second Jhana is vitak­ka­saha­gatā sañ­ñāmana­sikārā and the intrusion into the Third Jhana is pītisahagatā sañ­ñāmana­sikārā. Leaving aside the issue about whether sañ­ñāmana­sikārā is a dvanda compound or a type of tappurisa, we get the clear sense from the suttas that the 3 instrusions are respectively connected to kāma, vitakka and pīti. This maps very neatly to the listing of thorns highlighted above in AN 10.72.

Let's take a look at the compounds ending with -sahagatā. The first member of Pali compounds are not inflected to indicate case or number, so that the substantive noun in the 1st intrusion may be either kāma (singular) or kāmā (plural). So, what's the big deal?

The singular kāma is used in the early sutta strata to refer to sensual desire, whereas the plural kāmā refers to the 5 sense objects (see CPD entry and suttas such as MN 13 where kāmā are clearly the contents of the sensual world, giving rise to both pleasure and pain). It is only with the Abhidhamma that the plural kāmā comes to refer to sensual desires (plural). An example of this Abhidhammic usage would be Ven Nanamoli's original translation of "vivicceva kāmehi" (quite secluded from sensual desires) which BB changed to "quite secluded from sensual pleasures". You can see how this early singular/plural distinction is used in the famous verse from AN 6.63 -
Saṅkapparāgo purisassa kāmo (sg),
Nete kāmā (pl) yāni citrāni loke;
Saṅkapparāgo purisassa kāmo (sg),
Tiṭṭhanti citrāni tatheva loke;
Athettha dhīrā vinayanti chandanti.

The passion for his resolves is a man's sensuality (sg),
not the beautiful sensual pleasures (pl)
found in the world.
The passion for his resolves is a man's sensuality (sg).

The beauties remain as they are in the world,
while the wise, in this regard,
subdue their desire.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
I've indicated in brackets the numerical status of each occurrence of kāma versus kāmā, to make it clear that the plural kāmā is not a multiplicity of kāma. So with respect to Bhante Kumara, I would suggest that not enough has been done to distinguish between the Early Buddhist lexicon versus Abhidhammic lexicon if one insists on translating vivicceva kāmehi as referring to seclusion from sense desires. The plain and simple reading of it seclusion from sense objects.

Is the intrusion in First Jhana an intrusion of sensual desire or of the sense objects? According to MN 44, in the First Jhana, rāgānusaya (the latent tendency to lust) does not underlie the pleasure of the First Jhana (unless you follow the Comy adoption of the Abhidhamma's supramundane jhana model to explain this passage). It seems clear to me that the intrusion into the First Jhana is not of sense desire, but of sense objects. This agrees with AN 10.72's characterisation of sound being a thorn in the First Jhana.

I do realise that Bhante Kumara makes much of the iminā vihārena viharato (while I was dwelling) situation, but the context shows that what happened then was not welcome, but a nuisance. Bear in mind that the standard definition of the Second Jhana is the absence of vitakkavicāra, but yet, in AN 9.41, vitakkavicāra intruded into the Bodhisatta's Second Jhana. The Buddha called this intrusion ābādha, an affliction.

Now, was this a narrative of the Bodhisatta's difficulty in stabilising each jhana, or is it a roadmap of the ideal jhana? To me, the context suggests the former.

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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Kumara » Wed May 07, 2014 8:34 am

Sylvester, are you ignoring the earlier part that gives a context to what kaṇṭaka (thorn) means?
Pavi­vekā­rāmassa saṅga­ṇikā­rāmatā kaṇṭako, asu­bhani­mittā­nu­yogaṃ anuyuttassa subhani­mittā­nuyogo kaṇṭako, indriyesu guttadvārassa visūkadassanaṃ kaṇṭako, brahma­cari­yassa mātugāmūpacāro kaṇṭako...
B.Bodhi's translation:
(1) Delight in company is a thorn to one who delights in solitude. (2) Pursuit of an attractive object is a thorn to one intent on meditation on the mark of the unattractive. (3) An unsuitable show is a thorn to one guarding the doors of the sense faculties. (4) Keeping company with women is a thorn to the celibate life.
These all imply that those thorns are perceivable. Otherwise, they wouldn't be thorns.

As for the thorns of 2nd-4th jhana, certainly when one is properly in those jhanas, those thorns are not present. But that doesn't imply that sound/noise is not perceivable in any jhana. Remember that the sutta is about thorns to a state, not their presence. Sound is a thorn to the first jhana, but not to the others, because the mind is composed enough to not be bothered.
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Re: Can We Hear Sound in Jhāna?

Post by Sylvester » Wed May 07, 2014 8:43 am

Of course the thorns are perceptible. That means that sound, when perceived in the First Jhana, makes it a thorn. Just as the speech formation, when perceived in the Second Jhana makes it a thorn to the Second Jhana.

I think what you are glossing over is the fact that the thorns are deemed as such because they are incompatible with each of the states they pop up in. How else do you reconcile the standard definition of the Second Jhana with the presence of its thorn? It's not their perceptibility per se that makes them thorns, but the fact that they intrude into a state which they have no business being in, under the standard definition of the attainments. By your logic, rapture should be a thorn in the Second Jhana, because rapture is clearly perceptible there.

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