My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

The cultivation of calm or tranquility and the development of concentration
SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm

So, as you may or may not know, Anapanasati, Satipatthana, samatha, Vipassana are taught in Theraveda, Mahāyāna, and Vajrayana programs. So what I was taught in the mindfulness practices in Thich Nhat Hanhs organization was simply samatha, and after about ten years of doing it I took it out and wondered if it needed fixing. I decided it needed more bare attention and wakefulness. And this was the result: strange things started happening. Didn’t know what it was. But I knew what it seemed like so I started searching online. It took s few months to piece together but it had something to do with samadhi and jhana. At first it was great but at the same time I didn’t have support from teacher or sangha due to my job and work schedule. Without going into details, let’s just say it was a game-changer. Recently I began to approach the problems of no teacher no sangha. Then I discover that my experience is not considered authentic by the same teacher who taught the samatha in the first place. I can’t ignore or discount the experience so until the dust settles I’m looking for other traditions/lineage. Ad hoc “mindfulness” teachings aren’t at the top of the list, I think that’s part of the problem, not the solution. I’m not sectarian, as I have no dog in this fight. My experience with jhana/samadhi is leading me somewhere I just need a road map and some fellow travelers.

User avatar
Sam Vara
Posts: 3508
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 5:42 pm
Location: Sussex, U.K.

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:30 pm

SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm
So, as you may or may not know, Anapanasati, Satipatthana, samatha, Vipassana are taught in Theraveda, Mahāyāna, and Vajrayana programs. So what I was taught in the mindfulness practices in Thich Nhat Hanhs organization was simply samatha, and after about ten years of doing it I took it out and wondered if it needed fixing. I decided it needed more bare attention and wakefulness. And this was the result: strange things started happening. Didn’t know what it was. But I knew what it seemed like so I started searching online. It took s few months to piece together but it had something to do with samadhi and jhana. At first it was great but at the same time I didn’t have support from teacher or sangha due to my job and work schedule. Without going into details, let’s just say it was a game-changer. Recently I began to approach the problems of no teacher no sangha. Then I discover that my experience is not considered authentic by the same teacher who taught the samatha in the first place. I can’t ignore or discount the experience so until the dust settles I’m looking for other traditions/lineage. Ad hoc “mindfulness” teachings aren’t at the top of the list, I think that’s part of the problem, not the solution. I’m not sectarian, as I have no dog in this fight. My experience with jhana/samadhi is leading me somewhere I just need a road map and some fellow travelers.
If I understand you correctly, you have been doing a form of Samatha meditation for a number of years; you have changed your practice, and found that this change has led to markedly different results in your practice; and now your original teacher is unable to advise on these different results, and indeed claims them to be "inauthentic". Please correct me if I've misunderstood!

It is very difficult to advise on meditation techniques and experiences on-line, as the communication is slow and rather crude for such purposes. Face to face personal instruction is best, but in your case, you have a dilemma. Going back to your original teacher would certainly solve the problem, but would mean that your experiences are discounted and labelled as "inauthentic". But you might want to consider this option, as there are indeed some spectacular effects that arise in meditation which are not particularly helpful. In addition, a good solid grounding in Samatha is always useful, and some people just keep going for years like this and thereby develop a very useful practice.

On the other hand, if you want to explore the "game-changing" aspects of the bare attention and wakefulness, you might want to look for a teacher who can accommodate those and advise on them. It's difficult to know where to look for such a teacher, but one approach would be to contact a teacher who you think might be helpful and open-minded, and lay all your cards on the table. Explain to him/her what has happened, and see if they are prepared to offer a way forward.

SarathW
Posts: 9146
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SarathW » Wed Jan 17, 2018 8:59 pm

My suggestion is to learn Theravada Sutta Jhana and compare your experience to it.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 1839
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by DooDoot » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:11 pm

SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm
My experience with jhana/samadhi is leading me somewhere I just need a road map and some fellow travelers.
Hi SWK

According to the suttas, in jhana, all of the five hindrances have disappeared, including the hindrance of doubt. Since there appears to be many doubts in your post, it appears likely your mind did not reach jhana.

Regards

SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:59 pm

DooDoot wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:11 pm
SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm
My experience with jhana/samadhi is leading me somewhere I just need a road map and some fellow travelers.
Hi SWK

According to the suttas, in jhana, all of the five hindrances have disappeared, including the hindrance of doubt. Since there appears to be many doubts in your post, it appears likely your mind did not reach jhana.

Regards
I have no doubts concerning the validity and truth of the Dhamma. Isn't that what it says?

SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:02 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:30 pm
SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm
So, as you may or may not know, Anapanasati, Satipatthana, samatha, Vipassana are taught in Theraveda, Mahāyāna, and Vajrayana programs. So what I was taught in the mindfulness practices in Thich Nhat Hanhs organization was simply samatha, and after about ten years of doing it I took it out and wondered if it needed fixing. I decided it needed more bare attention and wakefulness. And this was the result: strange things started happening. Didn’t know what it was. But I knew what it seemed like so I started searching online. It took s few months to piece together but it had something to do with samadhi and jhana. At first it was great but at the same time I didn’t have support from teacher or sangha due to my job and work schedule. Without going into details, let’s just say it was a game-changer. Recently I began to approach the problems of no teacher no sangha. Then I discover that my experience is not considered authentic by the same teacher who taught the samatha in the first place. I can’t ignore or discount the experience so until the dust settles I’m looking for other traditions/lineage. Ad hoc “mindfulness” teachings aren’t at the top of the list, I think that’s part of the problem, not the solution. I’m not sectarian, as I have no dog in this fight. My experience with jhana/samadhi is leading me somewhere I just need a road map and some fellow travelers.
If I understand you correctly, you have been doing a form of Samatha meditation for a number of years; you have changed your practice, and found that this change has led to markedly different results in your practice; and now your original teacher is unable to advise on these different results, and indeed claims them to be "inauthentic". Please correct me if I've misunderstood!

It is very difficult to advise on meditation techniques and experiences on-line, as the communication is slow and rather crude for such purposes. Face to face personal instruction is best, but in your case, you have a dilemma. Going back to your original teacher would certainly solve the problem, but would mean that your experiences are discounted and labelled as "inauthentic". But you might want to consider this option, as there are indeed some spectacular effects that arise in meditation which are not particularly helpful. In addition, a good solid grounding in Samatha is always useful, and some people just keep going for years like this and thereby develop a very useful practice.

On the other hand, if you want to explore the "game-changing" aspects of the bare attention and wakefulness, you might want to look for a teacher who can accommodate those and advise on them. It's difficult to know where to look for such a teacher, but one approach would be to contact a teacher who you think might be helpful and open-minded, and lay all your cards on the table. Explain to him/her what has happened, and see if they are prepared to offer a way forward.
Thanks, thats a good plan

SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:11 pm

SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:59 pm
DooDoot wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:11 pm
SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm
My experience with jhana/samadhi is leading me somewhere I just need a road map and some fellow travelers.
Hi SWK

According to the suttas, in jhana, all of the five hindrances have disappeared, including the hindrance of doubt. Since there appears to be many doubts in your post, it appears likely your mind did not reach jhana.

Regards
I have no doubts concerning the validity and truth of the Dhamma. Isn't that what it says?
"Finally, the hindrance of doubt (vicikiccha) is explained as uncertainty with regard to the Buddha, the Dhamma, the Sangha and the training." Bhante Gunaratana
Bhikku Thanisarro say about the same.
If it's all the same, I could live alone as a hermit, but I'd still have Buddha, Dhamma, Sangha, as well as Teacher? But that's a lot of unnecessary trouble. Best left alone.

SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:32 pm

SarathW wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 8:59 pm
My suggestion is to learn Theravada Sutta Jhana and compare your experience to it.
Good. I don't spend much time surveying the landscape as far as who is teaching what. But fortunately there's quite a wide selection of Theravada teachers around this city. What's the distinction between "Sutta Jhana" and other jhana practices?

SarathW
Posts: 9146
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SarathW » Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:26 pm

The way I understand the Sutta Jhana mainly explain if four stages.
Abhidhamma Jhana explain it five stages.
Basically there is no mark difference in them.
When I say Sutta Jhana what I meant was to follow the description is Sutta.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:36 pm

Then again, i could always be wrong. It's happened before. :buddha1:

paul
Posts: 1044
Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 11:27 pm
Location: Vietnam

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by paul » Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:37 pm

You have an Asian mind and so have a natural facility with jhana which is a great advantage, but unfortunately has the downside of making the practitioner overlook or disparage vipassana; this is one of the dangers recognised in the path and represents an imbalance in the faculties where tranquility is in excess of wisdom, resulting in a practice which does not accord with the Theravada path of eradicating the defilements rather than just suppressing them. The practitioner must put jhana to one side for the time being and begin a study of vipassana from the ground up, from “Satipatthana: The Direct Path to Realization”, by Ven. Analayo, as the statements you make about the subject lack knowledge.
With the availability of access to the best Theravada minds on the internet (Bikkhu Bodhi, Ven. Analayo, Thanissaro Bikkhu), progress of independent study is accelerated using those sources and the need for a personal teacher has been superseded. The main real world experience the practitioner should aim for is investigation of dhamma principles in events of daily life.
Last edited by paul on Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am

SarathW wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:26 pm
The way I understand the Sutta Jhana mainly explain if four stages.
Abhidhamma Jhana explain it five stages.
Basically there is no mark difference in them.
When I say Sutta Jhana what I meant was to follow the description is Sutta.
Okay - were I was at during Rains Retreat in 2009 - pīti & sukha, sometimes cittass'ekaggatā, then one one or two occasions all these dropped away leaving only upekkhii-sati-piirisuddhl. Recently 2017-2018 pīti & sukha typically, but ekaggata less frequent, upekkhii - not yet. The difference being in 2009 i was applying bare knuckles attention, which i don't do now. The years in between were erroneously wasted thinking time wasn't of the essence.

Basing all this on the handy Leigh Brasington chart. I find the word jhana and samadhi too general to deal with but invariably its usefully descriptive in some odd way, but less precise. So far I'm only describing my experiences on the zafu, while meditating. There's more, but its not analytical, too subjective.

The other oddity - in 2009 i wasn't even observing 5 precepts. A moral life by Christian standards, but now, 2018, i find not observing 5 Precepts too difficult, more difficult than observing them. My main needs are locating teachings and teachers compatible with life experience which i can, and won't try to change. :anjali:

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 1839
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by DooDoot » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:21 am

SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:11 pm
Finally, the hindrance of doubt (vicikiccha) is explained as uncertainty with regard to the Buddha, the Dhamma, the Sangha and the training." Bhante Gunaratana
Doubt has many contexts in the suttas. Gunaratana is referring to "fetter" (samyojana). I was referring to "hindrance" (nivarana). As I suggested, when the mind reaches jhana, it should know without any doubt. In other words, no teacher should be required.
Abandoning the Hindrances

Endowed with this noble aggregate of virtue, this noble restraint over the sense faculties, this noble mindfulness & alertness, he seeks out a secluded dwelling: a wilderness, the shade of a tree, a mountain, a glen, a hillside cave, a charnel ground, a forest grove, the open air, a heap of straw. After his meal, returning from his alms round, he sits down, crosses his legs, holds his body erect, and brings mindfulness to the fore.

Abandoning covetousness with regard to the world, he dwells with an awareness devoid of covetousness. He cleanses his mind of covetousness. Abandoning ill will & anger, he dwells with an awareness devoid of ill will, sympathetic with the welfare of all living beings. He cleanses his mind of ill will & anger. Abandoning sloth & drowsiness, he dwells with an awareness devoid of sloth & drowsiness, mindful, alert, percipient of light. He cleanses his mind of sloth & drowsiness. Abandoning restlessness & anxiety, he dwells undisturbed, his mind inwardly stilled. He cleanses his mind of restlessness & anxiety. Abandoning uncertainty, he dwells having crossed over uncertainty, with no perplexity with regard to skillful mental qualities. He cleanses his mind of uncertainty.

The Four Jhānas
Having abandoned these five hindrances — imperfections of awareness that weaken discernment — then, quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities, he enters and remains in the first jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation.

"With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters and remains in the second jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance (self-confidence).

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
:alien:
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
Okay - were I was at during Rains Retreat in 2009 - pīti & sukha, sometimes cittass'ekaggatā, then one one or two occasions all these dropped away leaving only upekkhii-sati-piirisuddhl. Recently 2017-2018 pīti & sukha typically, but ekaggata less frequent, upekkhii - not yet. The difference being in 2009 i was applying bare knuckles attention, which i don't do now. The years in between were erroneously wasted thinking time wasn't of the essence.
Not every experience of piti & sukha is jhana. The primary characteristic of jhana is silence or the suspension of thought & speech. When real jhana is attained, there is obviously no tendency to talk about it.
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
Basing all this on the handy Leigh Brasington chart.
Leigh Brasington descriptions of jhana often don't match with experiences of the most basic meditators. Leigh Brasington looks for feelings to volitionally concoct.
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
The other oddity - in 2009 i wasn't even observing 5 precepts. A moral life by Christian standards, but now, 2018, i find not observing 5 Precepts too difficult, more difficult than observing them. My main needs are locating teachings and teachers compatible with life experience which i can, and won't try to change.
I imagine if jhana was reached, not only would not following the five precepts be difficult, but talking would be difficult.
For one who has attained the first jhana, speech has ceased.

https://suttacentral.net/en/sn36.11
:candle:
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
...cittass'ekaggatā...
Maybe it would be useful if you described in more detail what cittass'ekaggatā is?

SarathW
Posts: 9146
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SarathW » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:45 am

Leigh Brasington descriptions of jhana
I could not find any problem with LB's teaching according to the following chart.

http://the-wanderling.com/jhana_factors.html
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 1839
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by DooDoot » Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:05 am

SarathW wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:45 am
I could not find any problem with LB's teaching according to the following chart.

http://the-wanderling.com/jhana_factors.html
The words in the chart may be OK but the experiences LB's describes (elsewhere) may not match what these words really mean. This is why I suggested to SunWuKong to describe in detail the experience he/she is imputing the words 'cittaekaggata' upon.

SarathW
Posts: 9146
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SarathW » Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:45 am

LB's describes (elsewhere) may not match what these words really mean.
This is a good point.
That is why I suggested to stick with Sutta description.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

pyluyten
Posts: 80
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2017 9:08 am

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by pyluyten » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:27 am

SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm
Didn’t know what it was. But I knew what it seemed like so I started searching online. It took s few months to piece together
[...]
Then I discover that my experience is not considered authentic by the same teacher who taught the samatha in the first place.
You seem to be really open to look at what happens, which is really great. I wish you to find the support.
You certainly know the kalama sutta!
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html

SunWuKong
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by SunWuKong » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:28 pm

DooDoot wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:21 am
SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:11 pm
Finally, the hindrance of doubt (vicikiccha) is explained as uncertainty with regard to the Buddha, the Dhamma, the Sangha and the training." Bhante Gunaratana
Doubt has many contexts in the suttas. Gunaratana is referring to "fetter" (samyojana). I was referring to "hindrance" (nivarana). As I suggested, when the mind reaches jhana, it should know without any doubt. In other words, no teacher should be required.
Abandoning the Hindrances

Endowed with this noble aggregate of virtue, this noble restraint over the sense faculties, this noble mindfulness & alertness, he seeks out a secluded dwelling: a wilderness, the shade of a tree, a mountain, a glen, a hillside cave, a charnel ground, a forest grove, the open air, a heap of straw. After his meal, returning from his alms round, he sits down, crosses his legs, holds his body erect, and brings mindfulness to the fore.

Abandoning covetousness with regard to the world, he dwells with an awareness devoid of covetousness. He cleanses his mind of covetousness. Abandoning ill will & anger, he dwells with an awareness devoid of ill will, sympathetic with the welfare of all living beings. He cleanses his mind of ill will & anger. Abandoning sloth & drowsiness, he dwells with an awareness devoid of sloth & drowsiness, mindful, alert, percipient of light. He cleanses his mind of sloth & drowsiness. Abandoning restlessness & anxiety, he dwells undisturbed, his mind inwardly stilled. He cleanses his mind of restlessness & anxiety. Abandoning uncertainty, he dwells having crossed over uncertainty, with no perplexity with regard to skillful mental qualities. He cleanses his mind of uncertainty.

The Four Jhānas
Having abandoned these five hindrances — imperfections of awareness that weaken discernment — then, quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities, he enters and remains in the first jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation.

"With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters and remains in the second jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance (self-confidence).

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
:alien:
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
Okay - were I was at during Rains Retreat in 2009 - pīti & sukha, sometimes cittass'ekaggatā, then one one or two occasions all these dropped away leaving only upekkhii-sati-piirisuddhl. Recently 2017-2018 pīti & sukha typically, but ekaggata less frequent, upekkhii - not yet. The difference being in 2009 i was applying bare knuckles attention, which i don't do now. The years in between were erroneously wasted thinking time wasn't of the essence.
Not every experience of piti & sukha is jhana. The primary characteristic of jhana is silence or the suspension of thought & speech. When real jhana is attained, there is obviously no tendency to talk about it.
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
Basing all this on the handy Leigh Brasington chart.
Leigh Brasington descriptions of jhana often don't match with experiences of the most basic meditators. Leigh Brasington looks for feelings to volitionally concoct.
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
The other oddity - in 2009 i wasn't even observing 5 precepts. A moral life by Christian standards, but now, 2018, i find not observing 5 Precepts too difficult, more difficult than observing them. My main needs are locating teachings and teachers compatible with life experience which i can, and won't try to change.
I imagine if jhana was reached, not only would not following the five precepts be difficult, but talking would be difficult.
For one who has attained the first jhana, speech has ceased.

https://suttacentral.net/en/sn36.11
:candle:
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:14 am
...cittass'ekaggatā...
Maybe it would be useful if you described in more detail what cittass'ekaggatā is?
In practical layman’s terms, one pointed attention silences directed thought, applied thought. Only subtle thought and feeling remains which recognizes that it is happening. At first it may be pleasurable, joyous, but eventually even those feelings are gone over. All that remains is a general sense of equanimity. Only a trace of mental activity exists, beyond that there’s no memory of an experience, so it’s impossible to say anything about it. Such and such; this is still while sitting on the zafu. The same states arising while in daily activity are a whole different matter, but also possible as well as desirable.

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 1839
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by DooDoot » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:39 pm

SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:28 pm
In practical layman’s terms, one pointed attention silences directed thought, applied thought. Only subtle thought and feeling remains which recognizes that it is happening. At first it may be pleasurable, joyous, but eventually even those feelings are gone over. All that remains is a general sense of equanimity.
I read cittaekaggata relates to unmovingness, as follows:
The one-consciousness in time produces the extraordinary stability of the
first jhana, allowing it to last effortlessly for such a long period of time.
The concept of time relies on measuring intervals: from past to present or
from present to future of from past to future. When all that is perceived
within the first jhana is the precise moment of now, then there is no
room for measuring time. All intervals have closed. It is replaced with
the perception of timelessness, unmoving.

http://dhammatalks.net/Books/Ajahn_Brahm_The_Jhanas.pdf
:candle:
SunWuKong wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:28 pm
Only a trace of mental activity exists, beyond that there’s no memory of an experience, so it’s impossible to say anything about it.
If the Buddha described jhana, I guess this mind must have experienced & remembered them.

Metta. Good night from here. :meditate:

User avatar
manas
Posts: 2451
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:04 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: My experience with jhana and samadhi, comments welcome

Post by manas » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:13 pm

SunWuKong wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:14 pm
My experience with jhana/samadhi is leading me somewhere I just need a road map and some fellow travelers.
Hi, the best road map I've found, is from the Samannaphala Sutta. I'm only posting the section from 'abandoning the hindrances' on, up to the first jhana, but there is much more in the sutta. What comes before this passage, is an outline of the necessary foundations, such as virtue, guarding the sense-doors, and practicing mindfulness & alertness.
Abandoning the Hindrances

"Endowed with this noble aggregate of virtue, this noble restraint over the sense faculties, this noble mindfulness and alertness, and this noble contentment, he seeks out a secluded dwelling: a forest, the shade of a tree, a mountain, a glen, a hillside cave, a charnel ground, a jungle grove, the open air, a heap of straw. After his meal, returning from his alms round, he sits down, crosses his legs, holds his body erect, and brings mindfulness to the fore.

"Abandoning covetousness with regard to the world, he dwells with an awareness devoid of covetousness. He cleanses his mind of covetousness. Abandoning ill will and anger, he dwells with an awareness devoid of ill will, sympathetic with the welfare of all living beings. He cleanses his mind of ill will and anger. Abandoning sloth and drowsiness, he dwells with an awareness devoid of sloth and drowsiness, mindful, alert, percipient of light. He cleanses his mind of sloth and drowsiness. Abandoning restlessness and anxiety, he dwells undisturbed, his mind inwardly stilled. He cleanses his mind of restlessness and anxiety. Abandoning uncertainty, he dwells having crossed over uncertainty, with no perplexity with regard to skillful mental qualities. He cleanses his mind of uncertainty.

"Suppose that a man, taking a loan, invests it in his business affairs. His business affairs succeed. He repays his old debts and there is extra left over for maintaining his wife. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, taking a loan, I invested it in my business affairs. Now my business affairs have succeeded. I have repaid my old debts and there is extra left over for maintaining my wife.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"Now suppose that a man falls sick — in pain and seriously ill. He does not enjoy his meals, and there is no strength in his body. As time passes, he eventually recovers from that sickness. He enjoys his meals and there is strength in his body. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, I was sick... Now I am recovered from that sickness. I enjoy my meals and there is strength in my body.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"Now suppose that a man is bound in prison. As time passes, he eventually is released from that bondage, safe and sound, with no loss of property. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, I was bound in prison. Now I am released from that bondage, safe and sound, with no loss of my property.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"Now suppose that a man is a slave, subject to others, not subject to himself, unable to go where he likes. As time passes, he eventually is released from that slavery, subject to himself, not subject to others, freed, able to go where he likes. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, I was a slave... Now I am released from that slavery, subject to myself, not subject to others, freed, able to go where I like.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"Now suppose that a man, carrying money and goods, is traveling by a road through desolate country. As time passes, he eventually emerges from that desolate country, safe and sound, with no loss of property. The thought would occur to him, 'Before, carrying money and goods, I was traveling by a road through desolate country. Now I have emerged from that desolate country, safe and sound, with no loss of my property.' Because of that he would experience joy and happiness.

"In the same way, when these five hindrances are not abandoned in himself, the monk regards it as a debt, a sickness, a prison, slavery, a road through desolate country. But when these five hindrances are abandoned in himself, he regards it as unindebtedness, good health, release from prison, freedom, a place of security. Seeing that they have been abandoned within him, he becomes glad. Glad, he becomes enraptured. Enraptured, his body grows tranquil. His body tranquil, he is sensitive to pleasure. Feeling pleasure, his mind becomes concentrated.

(The Four Jhanas)
"Quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful mental qualities, he enters and remains in the first jhana: rapture and pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought and evaluation. He permeates and pervades, suffuses and fills this very body with the rapture and pleasure born from withdrawal. Just as if a skilled bathman or bathman's apprentice would pour bath powder into a brass basin and knead it together, sprinkling it again and again with water, so that his ball of bath powder — saturated, moisture-laden, permeated within and without — would nevertheless not drip; even so, the monk permeates... this very body with the rapture and pleasure born of withdrawal. There is nothing of his entire body unpervaded by rapture and pleasure born from withdrawal.

"This is a fruit of the contemplative life, visible here and now, more excellent than the previous ones and more sublime. (https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html)
Knowing this body is like a clay jar,
securing this mind like a fort,
attack Mara with the spear of discernment,
then guard what's won without settling there,
without laying claim.

- Dhp 40

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests