Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

The cultivation of calm or tranquility and the development of concentration
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Dhammanando
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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by Dhammanando » Wed Jun 24, 2015 12:02 pm

SarathW wrote:The way I understand Resultant (Vipaka) is neither wholesome nor unwholesome.
The terms 'wholesome' and 'unwholesome' applied to resultant consciousnesses refer not to the consciousnesses themselves but to the past kammas that gave rise to them.

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by kirk5a » Wed Jun 24, 2015 1:04 pm

Ven. Ananda did not list jhanas 1-4 as satisfying the following. Only the dimensions of infinite space, infinite consciousness, nothingness, and "the fruit of gnosis."
Ven. Ananda said, "It is amazing, friends, it is marvelous, how the Blessed One who knows & sees, the worthy one, rightly self-awakened, has attained & recognized the opportunity for the purification of beings, for the overcoming of sorrow & lamentation, for the disappearance of pain & distress, for the attainment of the right method, & for the realization of Unbinding, where the eye will be, and forms, and yet one will not be sensitive to that dimension; where the ear will be, and sounds... where the nose will be, and aromas... where the tongue will be, and flavors... where the body will be, and tactile sensations, and yet one will not be sensitive to that dimension."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by Virgo » Wed Jun 24, 2015 1:15 pm

robertk wrote: Jhana is a superhuman state, rare, profound and difficult to attain.

So if any monk is pointing out that for one who is thinking , or hearing, or experiencing sensations in the body, that they cannot have attained jhana then that is to the benefit of the Dhamma.
:clap: Well said!

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by SarathW » Wed Jun 24, 2015 9:59 pm

kirk5a wrote:Ven. Ananda did not list jhanas 1-4 as satisfying the following. Only the dimensions of infinite space, infinite consciousness, nothingness, and "the fruit of gnosis."
Ven. Ananda said, "It is amazing, friends, it is marvelous, how the Blessed One who knows & sees, the worthy one, rightly self-awakened, has attained & recognized the opportunity for the purification of beings, for the overcoming of sorrow & lamentation, for the disappearance of pain & distress, for the attainment of the right method, & for the realization of Unbinding, where the eye will be, and forms, and yet one will not be sensitive to that dimension; where the ear will be, and sounds... where the nose will be, and aromas... where the tongue will be, and flavors... where the body will be, and tactile sensations, and yet one will not be sensitive to that dimension."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
:goodpost: Kirk
Can you give your own opinion please.
I am not going to hold you for this. :)
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by kirk5a » Wed Jun 24, 2015 11:21 pm

SarathW wrote: :goodpost: Kirk
Can you give your own opinion please.
I am not going to hold you for this. :)
Lacking an explanation as to why Ven. Ananda did not list jhanas 1-4 as states of concentration in which one cannot hear anything, if in fact that is the case, I am lead to the conclusion that jhanas 1-4 are not, necessarily, states of concentration in which one cannot hear anything.

After all, the standard jhana definitions, which specifically state which things arise and which things cease, do not say anything about ear-consciousness ceasing. If that is the crucial distinction, I don't understand why it isn't specified as a factor which ceases in the first jhana.

But perhaps someone can explain why it is important to not hear anything. Or conversely, why hearing something would be an obstacle to liberating insight. Especially considering the following:
“When, bhikkhus, a noble disciple listens to the Dhamma with eager ears, attending to it as a matter of vital concern, directing his whole mind to it, on that occasion the five hindrances are not present in him; on that occasion the seven factors of enlightenment go to fulfillment by development.”- SN46.38 (8)
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by SarathW » Wed Jun 24, 2015 11:32 pm

Thank you Kirk.
At this stage I think the same way as you do.
What I think is when you practice Samatha, you can't hear sound. (I think Ajhan Braham practice Samatha )
When you practice Vipassana you can hear sound.
:thinking:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by Pondera » Thu Jun 25, 2015 1:00 am

Jhana is a prerequisite for supernormal powers. Can one use the divine ear while in jhana?
A wise man once asked an audience, "why do the ignorant shrug their shoulders?"

No one in the audience knew. They shrugged their shoulders, however the wise man only laughed and shook his head. He didn't explain any further.

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by khlawng » Thu Jun 25, 2015 8:50 am

well,
both pondera and kirk has pointed out to some source in the suttas that do indicate hearing and thinking in the jhanas.

had some time today and read the Part ONE: introduction to the softcopy of AB's work.
you can find a copy here:
http://www.dhammatalks.net/Books/Ajahn_ ... Jhanas.pdf

luckily, i did not have to go too far with it...

curiously, ajahn drew reference to the Pañcala Sutta: Pañcala's Verse
please find the following quote below with my insertions in "()"
[Ven. Ananda:] "The five strings of sensuality, my friend, are described by the Blessed One as a confining place. Which five? Forms cognizable via the eye — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing; sounds cognizable via the ear... smells cognizable via the nose... tastes cognizable via the tongue... tactile sensations cognizable via the body — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. These five strings of sensuality are described by the Blessed One as a confining place.

"Now 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 (feeling?), accompanied by directed thought & evaluation (thinking?). Even this much is described by the Blessed One as the attaining of an opening in a confining place, though followed by a sequel. For even there there's a confining place. What is the confining place there? Just that directed thought & evaluation (thinking?) have not ceased. This is the confining place there.
....

AN 9.42
we all know that ven ananda has only achieved sotapanna-hood,
and this quote itself seems like a description from his own exp,
and he further says, "even this much is described by the blessed one as attaining of an opening in a confining place",
in my opinion, will lend some weight that the jhanas aren't binary,
that the exp is dependent on the cultivation level of an individual,
it is not auto-pilot jhana or the highway (third-rate samadhi).

bhante D, robert, your thoughts?

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by Dhammanando » Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:50 am

khlawng wrote:bhante D, robert, your thoughts?
The suttas in question have been quoted time and time again in past jhāna threads. The interpretation which sees them as allowing for hearing (and the other sensory consciousnesses) to occur in jhāna has been refuted time and time again, notably by Sylvester.

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by srivijaya » Thu Jun 25, 2015 12:11 pm

kirk5a wrote:perhaps someone can explain why it is important to not hear anything. Or conversely, why hearing something would be an obstacle to liberating insight.
Good question. Somewhere AB provides an anecdote of one of his followers being pronounced dead on arrival at A&E. Left on a stretcher the chap finally came around. With no discernible signs of life, the man had been in first jhana according to AB. Dread to think how far gone 2nd, 3rd, 4th etc would be in his scheme.

Compare this with MN111
"There was the case where Sariputta — quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities — entered & remained in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. Whatever qualities there are in the first jhana — directed thought, evaluation, rapture, pleasure, singleness of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness,[2] desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity, & attention — he ferreted them out one after another. Known to him they arose, known to him they remained, known to him they subsided. He discerned, 'So this is how these qualities, not having been, come into play. Having been, they vanish.' He remained unattracted & unrepelled with regard to those qualities, independent, detached, released, dissociated, with an awareness rid of barriers. He discerned that 'There is a further escape,' and pursuing it there really was for him.
There's a lot of insight going on in there. Vipassana & Samatha combined. AB on the other hand describes the "knowledge" of jhana in an entirely different way, ie. you know you have been in jhana when they conclude, as nothing is known when one is in jhana. So no wonder there is no hearing. There is no hearing in deep sleep or when otherwise unconscious.

I fail to see why such a state of obliteration should be considered "advanced" or even helpful or why discerning jhana factors would be considered "lowering the bar".

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by waterchan » Thu Jun 25, 2015 7:57 pm

srivijaya wrote: There's a lot of insight going on in there.
But the part of the sutta you quoted does not say that this insight happened during the first jhana. So for all we know, all of this:
He discerned, 'So this is how these qualities, not having been, come into play. Having been, they vanish.' He remained unattracted & unrepelled with regard to those qualities, independent, detached, released, dissociated, with an awareness rid of barriers. He discerned that 'There is a further escape,' and pursuing it there really was for him.
could have happened after Sariputta emerged from the jhana.

And of course it has been shown time and again, even by some "jhana lite" teachers, that "directed thought and evaluation" is not really the best translation for vitakka and vicara, so to me it's pretty convincing that there is no real thought or evaluation happening in the first jhana.

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by SarathW » Thu Jun 25, 2015 9:51 pm

So what is the difference between a Samatha meditator in first Jhana and a Vipassana meditator in first Jhana?
:thinking:
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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by waterchan » Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:15 pm

SarathW wrote:So what is the difference between a Samatha meditator in first Jhana and a Vipassana meditator in first Jhana?
:thinking:
Is there any such distinction in the suttas?

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by mikenz66 » Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:28 pm

See AN 4.41 for different types of samadhi:
"Monks, these are the four developments of concentration. Which four? There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to a pleasant abiding in the here & now. There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the attainment of knowledge & vision. There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to mindfulness & alertness. There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents.
The first is regular jhana.

:anjali:
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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by SarathW » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:27 pm

It is very interesting Mike.
Have you discuss this in your study group?
Four Jhana's are mentioned in only in the first case.
What is the difference between Jhana and concentration?
:thinking:
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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by mikenz66 » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:45 pm

The sutta lists four ways of developing samadhi, which is translated as concentration. The last two lead to mindfulness and insight.

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by SarathW » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:58 pm

What is the perception of light?
Why it has given such a importance? (say over space or any other Kasina objects)
:thinking:
PS: I found the following link:

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?t=3681" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by waterchan » Fri Jun 26, 2015 6:47 am

mikenz66 wrote:The sutta lists four ways of developing samadhi, which is translated as concentration. The last two lead to mindfulness and insight.

Mike
Is it right to say that the first two don't?

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by srivijaya » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:48 am

waterchan wrote:the part of the sutta you quoted does not say that this insight happened during the first jhana.
Known to him they arose, known to him they remained, known to him they subsided
There's a dynamic process of investigation and relinquishment going on which would be impossible in an unconscious or unaware state. The first jhana is even described as "accompanied by directed thought & evaluation". No sign of any of that in AB's description of 1st jhana.

Also, nowhere in the suttas does it explain that this process of insight happened after the monk arose from a state of oblivion.

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Re: Jhana definition by Ajahn Brahm

Post by robertk » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:58 am

srivijaya wrote:
Also, nowhere in the suttas does it explain that this process of insight happened after the monk arose from a state of oblivion.
Perhaps in your extensive study of the suttas you somehow overlooked ones like this:
Furthermore, with the complete transcending of the dimension of nothingness, Sariputta entered & remained in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. He emerged mindfully from that attainment. On emerging mindfully from that attainment, he regarded the past qualities that had ceased & changed: 'So this is how these qualities, not having been, come into play. Having been, they vanish.' He remained unattracted & unrepelled with regard to those qualities, independent, detached, released, dissociated, with an awareness rid of barriers. He discerned that 'There is a further escape,' and pursuing it there really was for him.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


Also jhana is not At all oblivion. There is profound awareness of the object, it is not like some sort of unconsciouness or deep sleep.

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