The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

On the cultivation of insight/wisdom
SarathW
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by SarathW » Wed Feb 13, 2013 12:23 am

I was watching that Carl Sagan’s video on Evolution. See attached:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gl89HIJ6HDo" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

It appears that the first cell created was not breathing!
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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anjali
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by anjali » Wed Feb 13, 2013 12:52 am

From Mindfulness, Bliss and Beyond: A Meditator's Handbook, by Ajahn Brahm and Jack Kornfield, pages 110-111,
During my teacher Ajahn Chah's long sickness, he would often stop breathing. On one such occasion the new nurse on duty became alarmed. He knew that Ajahn Chah must die one day, but he didn't want it to happen on his shift! The attendant monks on duty that night reassured him that Ajahn Chah had done the same many time before and that it was just a sign if deep meditation. The nurse was still worried and so took blood samples every few minutes during the hours without breathing to ensure that the blood was still well oxygenated. After all, as long as there is enough oxygen available in the blood there will be no harm to the body. The nurse discovered that even though Ajahn Chah was not breathing for a long time, the oxygen level in the blood remained constant. In jhana, the metabolism is so slowed down that you are using almost zero energy. You don't need to breathe.
There are people still alive who can confirm this story and probably get more details. I've heard an abbreviated version of this directly from Ajahn Pasanno who was one of the monks assisting Ajahn Chah during the final years of his illness.

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Mr Man
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by Mr Man » Wed Feb 13, 2013 9:44 am

santa100 wrote:Guess one will need to reach the 4th jhana to find out for themselves. Anyway, if one of the foremost teachers in the Thai forest tradition, Phra Ajahn Lee, said about the phenomenon, then it's something worth our attention instead of simply brushing it aside..
(On the fourth jhana:)...This is true singleness of object, focused on the unperturbed stillness of the breath. All parts of the breath in the body connect so that you can breathe through every pore. You don't have to breathe through the nostrils, because the in-and-out breath and the other aspects of the breath in the body form a single, unified whole. All aspects of the breath energy are even and full ( http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai/lee/eyeof.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; )
I have followed Ajahn Lee's instruction and through it developed what I would call a conceptual breath. It doesn't coincide with our normal understanding of breath. If we practice anapana sati at the nostril the focus often becomes a reflection of the breath not the actual breath.

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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by Dinsdale » Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:05 am

santa100 wrote:Guess one will need to reach the 4th jhana to find out for themselves. Anyway, if one of the foremost teachers in the Thai forest tradition, Phra Ajahn Lee, said about the phenomenon, then it's something worth our attention instead of simply brushing it aside..

(On the fourth jhana:)...All parts of the breath in the body connect so that you can breathe through every pore. You don't have to breathe through the nostrils,
Is breathing through one's pores biologically possible? The pores aren't designed for gaseous exhange.
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by Coyote » Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:18 am

porpoise wrote:
Is breathing through one's pores biologically possible? The pores aren't designed for gaseous exhange.
There's no exchange, but there is diffusion.

http://jp.physoc.org/content/538/3/985.full" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Note: Contribution of this to respiration is negligible, according to the article.
"If beings knew, as I know, the results of giving & sharing, they would not eat without having given, nor would the stain of miserliness overcome their minds. Even if it were their last bite, their last mouthful, they would not eat without having shared."
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santa100
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by santa100 » Wed Feb 13, 2013 2:30 pm

I'd suppose when one's reached such advanced stages of meditation, one'd be able to push beyond the physiological/mental ceiling of regular human being. If we only look at it from within the regular biological scope, none of the supernatural attainments of the Buddha and His noble disciples mentioned in many suttas would even be possible (the Chalabhinna of supernormal powers/psychic powers, clairaudience, telepathy, recollection of past lives, clairvoyance, ...)..

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daverupa
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by daverupa » Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:43 pm

santa100 wrote:I'd suppose when one's reached such advanced stages of meditation, one'd be able to push beyond the physiological/mental ceiling of regular human being.
Alternatively, through the practice of various meditations one might produce all manner of phantasms which receive culturally-supported explanations, thereby preventing any inclination toward critical inquiry or independent verification.

:shrug:
  • "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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Polar Bear
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by Polar Bear » Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:01 pm

santa100 wrote:I'd suppose when one's reached such advanced stages of meditation, one'd be able to push beyond the physiological/mental ceiling of regular human being. If we only look at it from within the regular biological scope, none of the supernatural attainments of the Buddha and His noble disciples mentioned in many suttas would even be possible (the Chalabhinna of supernormal powers/psychic powers, clairaudience, telepathy, recollection of past lives, clairvoyance, ...)..
Retrocognition and clairvoyance are different than flying through the air, walking on water, or breathing through skin that doesn't breathe. One group requires extra-sensory perception to be real while the other group requires that the laws of physics or the laws of the human body be broken as if we're in the matrix.

Of course, retrocognition and clairvoyance may also be impossible and any experiences of said things hallucinations or phantasms as Dave put it. Just saying, if you're going to accept rebirth you have to accept ESP but that doesn't mean you have to accept all the other weird impossible stuff that happens in the suttas.

:namaste:
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

santa100
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by santa100 » Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:08 pm

daverupa wrote:
...through the practice of various meditations one might produce all manner of phantasms which receive culturally-supported explanations
If the claim came from regular folks, it'd be no problem. But from Ajahn Lee, Ajahn Chah, and especially the Buddha? Wonder what the odds of that might be..
"...With his mind thus concentrated, purified, and bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, and attained to imperturbability, he directs and inclines it to the divine ear-element. He hears — by means of the divine ear-element, purified and surpassing the human — both kinds of sounds: divine and human, whether near or far. Just as if a man traveling along a highway were to hear the sounds of kettledrums, small drums, conchs, cymbals, and tom-toms. He would know, 'That is the sound of kettledrums, that is the sound of small drums, that is the sound of conchs, that is the sound of cymbals, and that is the sound of tom-toms.' In the same way — with his mind thus concentrated, purified, and bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, and attained to imperturbability — the monk directs and inclines it to the divine ear-element. He hears — by means of the divine ear-element, purified and surpassing the human — both kinds of sounds: divine and human, whether near or far ( http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; )

santa100
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by santa100 » Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:27 pm

polarbuddha101 wrote:
Retrocognition and clairvoyance are different than flying through the air, walking on water, or breathing through skin that doesn't breathe. One group requires extra-sensory perception to be real while the other group requires that the laws of physics or the laws of the human body be broken as if we're in the matrix.
I myself do have reservation about the flying through the air and walking on water stuff. But the laws of physics and of human body are not permanent. They subject to change just like other conditioned phenomena. About how much change is possible, well I already mentioned one would have to wait til they can experience it for themselves. So basically my position is to "wait and see" instead of immediately conclude it as nonsense..

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LonesomeYogurt
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by LonesomeYogurt » Wed Feb 13, 2013 7:01 pm

It should be pointed out that Ajahn Lee's talk about the breath and breath channels and all that are definitely not literal, but conceptual ways of understanding the link between breath and awareness. Although it's hard to separate where the literal stuff ends and the metaphor begins, I don't think Ajahn Lee or Thanisarro are actually claiming that we really breath through our skin. When I spoke with Thanisarro, he always seemed to be clear that the through-the-skin concept was more the encourage relaxed and non-forced breathing.
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.

Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.

His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti Sutta

Stuff I write about things.

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daverupa
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by daverupa » Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:33 pm

santa100 wrote:But from Ajahn Lee, Ajahn Chah, and especially the Buddha? Wonder what the odds of that might be..
Pretty good, since the first two names are exploring the same materials we are, and those materials were themselves shepherded to us via that cultural matrix to which I referred. If you like, I can cite some mysticism from other religious traditions which contradicts Buddhist cosmology et al, and ask you a question worded per this quote, above. I predict such an effort wouldn't convince you, nor should it, which is why this line of reasoning is simply dead in the water.

No sure bets in the realm of likelihoods, however, so it seems as though it's going to have to remain conjecture for us.
  • "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]

santa100
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by santa100 » Wed Feb 13, 2013 10:09 pm

daverupa wrote:
Pretty good, since the first two names are exploring the same materials we are, and those materials were themselves shepherded to us via that cultural matrix to which I referred


Actually I already mentioned my position as "wait and see", not "convinced" but also not "it's all cultural matrix" as how you view it. Simply because it requires just as much proof if not more to prove that yep, it's definitely a cultural herb to spice things up..

SarathW
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by SarathW » Wed Feb 13, 2013 10:15 pm

Is it possible air to get in to our body if you are not breathing?
What I meant was can't air go through your nostrils to lungs even if you are not breathing, as the same way air getting to a room? :juggling:
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Polar Bear
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Re: The attainment of the fifth Jhàna breathing ceases.How?

Post by Polar Bear » Wed Feb 13, 2013 10:46 pm

SarathW wrote:Is it possible air to get in to our body if you are not breathing?
What I meant was can't air go through your nostrils to lungs even if you are not breathing, as the same way air getting to a room? :juggling:
Air enters the lungs when the lungs expand thus sucking in air like a vacuum and then pushes air out when the lungs contract and as far as I know the lungs will always expand and contract so long as one is not purposely holding their breath and provided the person is not dead with the exception perhaps of those rare instances in extreme cold when the heart seems to be not beating (and thus not circulating oxygen and blood through the body) but brain death has not occurred.
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

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