SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Textual analysis and comparative discussion on early Buddhist sects and texts.
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frank k
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SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by frank k » Thu Mar 07, 2019 11:08 am

I received an interesting question to my blog post:
https://notesonthedhamma.blogspot.com/2 ... otice.html
Hi Frank,
Thank you for sharing. There are several suttas which indicate that the 7sb samadhi need not overlap with the 4 jhānas. See

-Vinaya pi-tv-kd8 (Lady Visākhā's boon)

-DN 2 (after abandoning the 5 hindrances but before entering the 4 jhānas)

-DN 13 (after abandoning the 5 hindrances but before entering the 4 brahmā vihāras)

-DN 18 (Brahmā Sanaṅkumāra's description of noble right samādhi)

I think the 7sb samādhi assumes right view and therefore fulfills the condition for entering noble right samādhi (4 jhānas) or 4 brahmā vihāras+7sb (see SN 46.54). I take the difference between 7sb samādhi and 4 jhānas to be that with the 7sb samādhi, the pītī and sukha that arise from abandoning the 5 hindrances is strong enough to keep the mind one pointed but not so strong that one is unable to speak. Whereas the first jhāna entails full saturation of the whole body with sukha (unwavering mindfulness of the body) and cessation of speech.
Hi unknown commenter,
You have several questions in there, so I'll just start with a few comments, and others may want to jump in and discuss.

In principle, I can agree that "7sb samadhi need not overlap with the 4 jhānas",
but all 4 texts you cite, they all primarily emphasize the overlap between 4j and 7sb.
DN 2 being the clearest case. Right after samadhi-sambojjhanga is mentioned, the 4 jhana formula is enumerated.
http://lucid24.org/dn/dn02/toc-addon/in ... e_link-56

For DN 13
The 4 jhanas and 4bv often overlap. For example, AN 8.63, and there's a sutta where it describes that the practice of 4 jhanas is what leads to rebirth to brhama realm. The very next sutta says the practice of 4bv leads to brahma realm. 4bv is also described practiced in conjunction with formless attainments, which are more difficult than 4j, so one could safely deduce 4bv requires 4j quality of samadhi.

for -Vinaya pi-tv-kd8 (Lady Visākhā's boon):
the 7sb here, the piti is going to be niramisa, the same piti as first jhana. the trigger for this is a vitakka/thought of recalling her generosity.
So there is going to be at least a finger snap moment's worth of first jhana in there, just for the most pessimistic case. But a finger snap's moment of first jhana is first jhana, according to the EBT. It's only non EBT like VRJ (vism. redefinition of jhana) and those who follow Ajahn Brahm's redefinition of jhana would dispute this.
This is also the identical type of situation as AN 6.10, and AN 8.30 (which does explicitly tie a thought triggered 7sb sequence into 4jhanas).

One is capable of speaking in first jhana. But if one speaks, one is no longer in first jhana.
A good quality first jhana may have inertia where it's difficult to speak, but not impossible.
Just like a freezing person gets into a warm bathtub, it's not impossible to leave the bathtub and get back into the freezing cold, but there's strong inertia against doing so.
http://www.audtip.org" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; Audio Sutta Recordings

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budo
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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by budo » Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:25 pm

Your response is good.

I'll add that first jhana (and even metta) is sufficient for attaining non-return and thus has the seven awakening factors.

The fourth jhana is sufficient for attaining arahantship, and thus has the seven awakening factors.

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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by saddhamma » Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:51 pm

Hi Frank and budo,
Thanks for your feedback. I think I now understand what you mean by "overlap". Perhaps a concise summary would be: "the 4 satipaṭṭhānas fulfill the 7sb and culminate in the 4 jhānas". Though it is important to note that in the suttas, the 7sb and 4 jhānas are separate abidings in their own right (see sn 46.4).
Thanks.

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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by ToVincent » Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:14 pm

There was a time on this forum, when it was asked to provide references to the suttas.
That does not seem to be the case anymore (particularly for some people).

There is a time also, when it would be proper to give references to suttas that have parallels to the extracts that are quoted.
That does not seem to be the case.

One is not going against the Theravada creed doing that. One is just making it stronger.

Anyway, it is not just the common texts that matters.
Another remarkable point, is that some ostensive definitions belong to one sect, while others belong to another. But both are crucial to the broad understanding.

It is as if Buddha had conjured schisms to call down either misinterpretations, or the return to integrity.

A lots of suttas' extracts referenced here, don't even have parallels in the other texts.
How good?
Some working for the Mara's world; some for the Brahma's world; some for the Unborn.
.
In this world with its ..., māras, ... in this population with its ascetics.... (AN 5.30).
------
We are all possessed - more or less.
------
And what, bhikkhu, is inward rottenness? Here someone is immoral, one of evil character, of impure and suspect behaviour, secretive in his acts, no ascetic though claiming to be one, not a celibate though claiming to be one, inwardly rotten, corrupt, depraved. This is called inward rottenness.”
SN 35.241
------
https://justpaste.it/j5o4

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budo
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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by budo » Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:34 pm

There is only one path, jhanas & contemplation of dhamma. That is it.

AN 1.400 Shows that Satipatthana is for arising jhanas :
395 (2)–401 (8)
“Bhikkhus, if for just the time of a finger snap a bhikkhu
develops (395) the second jhāna
. . . (396) the third jhāna
. . . (397)
the fourth jhāna
. . . (398) the liberation of the mind by loving-
kindness . . . (399) the liberation of the mind by compassion . . . [39]
(400) the liberation of the mind by altruistic joy
. . . (401) the lib-
eration of the mind by equanimity,
195
he is called a bhikkhu
who is not devoid of jhāna, who acts upon the teaching of the
Teacher, who responds to his advice, and who does not eat the
country’s almsfood in vain. How much more, then, those who
cultivate it!”
402 (9)–405 (12)
196
“. . . (402) dwells contemplating the body in the body,
197
ardent,
clearly comprehending, mindful, having removed longing and
dejection in regard to the world
. . . (403) dwells contemplat-
ing feelings in feelings
. . . (404) dwells contemplating mind in
mind
. . . (405) dwells contemplating phenomena in phenomena,
ardent, clearly comprehending, mindful, having removed long-
ing and dejection in regard to the world
. . .”
406 (13)–409 (16)
“. . . (406) generates desire for the non-arising of unarisen bad
unwholesome qualities; makes an effort, arouses energy,
applies his mind, and strives
. . . (407) generates desire for the
abandoning of arisen bad unwholesome qualities; makes an
effort, arouses energy, applies his mind, and strives
. . . (408)
generates desire for the arising of unarisen wholesome quali-
ties; makes an effort, arouses energy, applies his mind, and
strives
. . . (409) generates desire for the maintenance of arisen
wholesome qualities, for their non-decline, increase, expan-
sion, and fulfillment by development; makes an effort, arouses
energy, applies his mind, and strives
Furthermore Kayagatasati sutta shows Jhana is mindfulness in body, feelings, and mind.
"And furthermore, with the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — he enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither-pleasure-nor-pain. He sits, permeating the body with a pure, bright awareness. Just as if a man were sitting covered from head to foot with a white cloth so that there would be no part of his body to which the white cloth did not extend; even so, the monk sits, permeating the body with a pure, bright awareness. There is nothing of his entire body unpervaded by pure, bright awareness. And as he remains thus heedful, ardent, & resolute, any memories & resolves related to the household life are abandoned, and with their abandoning his mind gathers & settles inwardly, grows unified & centered. This is how a monk develops mindfulness immersed in the body.
Furthermore 4th jhana is considered COMPLETE PURITY OF MINDFULNESS
"Furthermore, with the abandoning of pleasure & stress — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — Sariputta entered & remained in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither-pleasure-nor-pain. Whatever qualities there are in the fourth jhana — a feeling of equanimity, neither pleasure nor pain; an unconcern due to serenity of awareness;[3] singleness of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, 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.
- Anupada sutta

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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by ToVincent » Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:43 pm

May I add that, on top of having parallels in the **extracts** quoted - something that some people still have some difficulties to apply, for whatever reason (sectarianism, cavil, hedging, opportune tergiversation, ambiguity, etc.) - there is also an evident aversion to admit the suitability of other lexicographic cases than those proposed in the all sacred Pali Text Society dictionary.

I have already talked lenghtily about the two definitions of sati.
But maybe I haven't made clear enough why I quite don't understand why people still stubornly persist to use the sole meaning of "concentration" for samādhi.

If we take the Pali and Sanskrit roots:

Pali:
Samādhi [fr.saṁ+ā+dhā]
Samādahi:[aor.of samādahati]
Samādahati = [saṃ + ā + dhā + a]
ādahati = [ā-dhā] or [ā-dah]
dah = to establish.

Sanskrit:
समाधि samādhi [act. samādhā]
[ sam-ā-√ dhā ]
- to place on (ŚBr. MBh.)

And, for instance, the parallel in SA 803 that gives the following corresponding steps of Anapanasati:

The next four are [9] awareness of the citta (覺知心), [10] awareness of gladdening the citta (覺知心悅), [11] awareness of establishing the citta (覺知心定), and [12] awareness of releasing the citta (覺知心解脫)

With the Chinese dictionary giving us the following basic definition for 定:
定 = to establish.
http://www.buddhism-dict.net/cgi-bin/xp ... =%E5%AE%9A
(sign in as guest with no password, if you can't acess this page).

The question is:
Are some people bothered to have others discover the difference between a polluted citta, and the (RIGHT) establishment of a pure citta?

In wich case (with the proper definition of sati and a proper understanding of the meaning of samādhi), the above bolded sentences become:

This is how a monk develops mindfulness immersed in the body.
=
This is how a monk develops obtention of the body.
&
.. purity of equanimity & mindfulness,...
=
... obtention of pure equanimity,...

So sure, the (four) ways to obtain (viz. samadhi)
https://justpaste.it/53nmx is for arising jhanas.
But progressively, in an intermingled manner.
.
.
Some working for the Mara's world; some for the Brahma's world; some for the Unborn.
.
In this world with its ..., māras, ... in this population with its ascetics.... (AN 5.30).
------
We are all possessed - more or less.
------
And what, bhikkhu, is inward rottenness? Here someone is immoral, one of evil character, of impure and suspect behaviour, secretive in his acts, no ascetic though claiming to be one, not a celibate though claiming to be one, inwardly rotten, corrupt, depraved. This is called inward rottenness.”
SN 35.241
------
https://justpaste.it/j5o4

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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by saddhamma » Fri Mar 08, 2019 3:56 pm

Hi ToVincent,
I agree that this concise summary: "the 4 sp fulfill the 7 sb and culminate in the 4 jhānas" packs the whole of the Buddha's teachings into one sentence and could benefit from some unpacking with sutta references.

Thanks to budo for his comments and solid sutta references to back them up. In the spirit of fidelity to the suttas, I would rephrase his statement that

"There is only one path, jhanas & contemplation of dhamma", to

"there is only the middle path that the buddha awakened to, namely ariyan right samādhi supported by ariyan right view… ariyan right mindfulness, which gives rise to vision, which gives rise to knowledge, which leads to peace, to direct knowledge, to awakening, to Nibbāna" (See the Buddha's first discourse SN 56.11).

Ariyan right samādhi is defined in the suttas as the one-pointedness of mind that is produced by ariyan right view… ariyan right mindfulness as its bases and requisites (see DN 18) or the four jhānas (see SN 45.8). So one who attains the 4 jhānas without ariyan right view is praised for attaining wholesome dhammas and superhuman states in knowledge and vision worthy of the ariyas, but is blamed for missing the ariyan 8-fold path which leads to Nibbāna (see SN 42.12). Ariyan right view is the deciding factor.

On the subject of unpacking the concise summary that "the 4 sp fulfill the 7 sb and culminate in the 4 jhānas", here are the sutta references:

MN 44 : Cūḷavedallasutta (4 sp are samādhinimittā)
“one-pointedness of mind is samadhi;
ekaggatā ayaṃ samādhi;

the four foundations of mindfulness are the sign of samadhi (samādhinimittā);
cattāro satipaṭṭhānā samādhinimittā;

the four right kinds of striving are the requisites of samadhi;
cattāro sammappadhānā samādhiparikkhārā.

the pursuit, keeping-in-being (guarding, retaining, keeping alive), and making-abundant (repetition, increasing) of these same dhammas is the keeping-in-being of samadhi therein.”
Yā tesaṃyeva dhammānaṃ āsevanā bhāvanā bahulīkammaṃ, ayaṃ ettha samādhibhāvanā”ti.

DN 28. Serene faith
In just the same way, it seems to me, Bhante, is the drift of the Dhamma.
Evameva kho me, bhante, dhammanvayo vidito. 

For, Bhante, all those Arahant Buddhas of the past, having abandoned the five hindrances, defilements of mind that weaken wisdom, with their minds firmly established the four foundations of mindfulness, having developed the seven factors of awakening as they have come to be, attained to supreme awakening.
Ye te, bhante, ahesuṃ atītamaddhānaṃ arahanto sammāsambuddhā, sabbe te bhagavanto pañca nīvaraṇe pahāya cetaso upakkilese paññāya dubbalīkaraṇe catūsu satipaṭṭhānesu suppatiṭṭhitacittā, satta sambojjhaṅge yathābhūtaṃ bhāvetvā anuttaraṃ sammāsambodhiṃ abhisambujjhiṃsu. 

What does it mean to have one's mind firmly established in the four foundations of mindfulness?

SN 22.80 alms gatherer
“There are, bhikkhus, these three kinds of unwholesome thoughts: sensual thought, thought of ill will, thought of harming.
Tayome, bhikkhave, akusalavitakkā— kāmavitakko, byāpādavitakko,vihiṃsāvitakko.

And where, bhikkhus, do these three unwholesome thoughts cease without remainder?
Ime ca bhikkhave, tayo akusalavitakkā kvaaparisesā nirujjhanti?

For one who dwells with a mind firmly established in the four establishments of mindfulness, or for one who develops the signless concentration.
Catūsu vā satipaṭṭhānesu suppatiṭṭhita cittassa viharato animittaṃ vāsamādhiṃ bhāvayato.

This is reason enough, bhikkhus, to develop the signless concentration.
Yāvañcidaṃ, bhikkhave, alameva animittosamādhi bhāvetuṃ.

MN 78. With Uggāhamāna Samaṇamuṇḍika - Samaṇamuṇḍikasutta

“What are unwholesome intentions?
Katame ca, thapati, akusalā saṅkappā?

They are the intention of sensual desire, the intention of ill will, and the intention of cruelty. These are called unwholesome intentions.
Kāmasaṅkappo, byāpādasaṅkappo,vihiṃsāsaṅkappo— ime vuccanti, thapati, akusalā saṅkappā.

“And what do these unwholesome intentions originate from?
Ime ca, thapati, akusalā saṅkappākiṃsamuṭṭhānā?

Their origin is stated: they should be said to originate from perception.
Samuṭṭhānampi nesaṃ vuttaṃ. ‘Saññāsamuṭṭhānā’ tissa vacanīyaṃ.

What perception? For perception is multiple, varied, and of different aspects,
Katamā saññā? Saññāpi hi bahū anekavidhānānappakārakā.

There is perception of sensual desire, perception of ill will, and perception of cruelty. Unwholesome intentions originate from this.
Kāmasaññā, byāpādasaññā, vihiṃsāsaññā— itosamuṭṭhānā akusalā saṅkappā.

“And where do these unwholesome intentions cease without remainder?
Ime ca, thapati, akusalā saṅkappā kuhiṃaparisesā nirujjhanti?

Their cessation is stated: here, quite secluded from sensual pleasures, secluded from unwholesome dhammas, a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the first jhana, which is accompanied by applied and sustained thought, with rapture and pleasure born of seclusion. It is here that unwholesome intentions cease without remainder.
Nirodhopi nesaṃ vutto: Idha, thapati, bhikkhu vivicceva kāmehi …pe … paṭhamaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajjaviharati;

Budo stated rightly and with solid sutta reference that:

"Furthermore 4th jhana is considered COMPLETE PURITY OF MINDFULNESS".

I would add that one attains unwavering mindfulness of the body in the first jhana, although that mindfulness is not yet purified due to the presence of vitakka, vicāra, pīti and sukha. The first jhana simile of the body being saturated by pīti and sukha like a bath powder saturated with water but not oozing, makes the unwavering mindfulness of the body while in the first jhāna abundantly clear enough.

In the second jhana, the mind is quietened by the absence of vitakka and vicāra (ariyan silence) and the unwavering mindfulness of the body becomes more purified but still not fully purified due to the presence of pīti and sukha.

In the third jhana, unwavering mindfulness of the body is still there due to sukha on the body but the mind has withdrawn from mental pleasure of pīti and attained equanimity. The Buddha describe this as an abiding in mindfulness and clear comprehension (sati sampajāna) and the ariyas praise one who abides thus as "He is equanimous, mindful, one who dwells happily". But utter purity of minfulness is still lacking due to the presence of sukha.

It is only in the fourth jhana where the mind and the body have become unified in upekkha that unwavering mindfulness of the body reaches utter purity due to equanimity.

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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by ToVincent » Fri Mar 08, 2019 7:12 pm

saddhamma wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 3:56 pm
You say:
Thanks to budo for his comments and solid sutta references to back them up.

AN 1.400 has no paralell !?!?
Solid references !?!?

Also, you are saying:
Ariyan right samādhi is defined in the suttas as the one-pointedness of mind that is produced by ariyan right view… ariyan right mindfulness as its bases and requisites (see DN 18)

This is the extract:

Unification of mind with these seven factors as prerequisites is called noble right immersion ‘with its vital conditions’ and ‘with its prerequisites’.
Yā kho, bho, imehi sattahaṅgehi cittassa ekaggatā parikkhatā, ayaṃ vuccati, bho, ariyo sammāsamādhi saupaniso itipi saparikkhāro itipi


As far as ekagga is concerned, the Sanskrit (in fine compositi) ग ga [agt. √ गम् gam*]; whose general meaning is: "who goes in, or who is in", seems to be the best solution to a long lasting conundrum.

* √ गम् gam
- to cause to go to any condition (RV. AV.),
cause to become - (TS. ŚBr.)
- to go to any state or condition , undergo - (RV. AV.)
- to go to or towards - (RV.)

Ekagga would mean somewhat what we find in SN 35.134:
samāhitaṃ cittaṃ ekaggaṃ
the mind becomes established and one-pointed (B. Bodhi's translation).
And not "unification" (Sujato's translation), which implies some kind of union or colligation.

And as there is no proper word in English to express the noun ekaggatā (whose underlying meaning is: "that goes in one" , "that causes to become one"), one must rely on an acceptable compromise, namely "unitariness".

The DN 18's extract becomes:

Unitariness of citta (produced) by these seven factors (viz. right view, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right obtention), as prerequisites, is called noble right establishment.

Have I denied such thing?

By the way, the second volume of DN is hardly considered as EBT by scholars anymore.
https://justpaste.it/imcr

Do I have to bother reading the rest ?
Some working for the Mara's world; some for the Brahma's world; some for the Unborn.
.
In this world with its ..., māras, ... in this population with its ascetics.... (AN 5.30).
------
We are all possessed - more or less.
------
And what, bhikkhu, is inward rottenness? Here someone is immoral, one of evil character, of impure and suspect behaviour, secretive in his acts, no ascetic though claiming to be one, not a celibate though claiming to be one, inwardly rotten, corrupt, depraved. This is called inward rottenness.”
SN 35.241
------
https://justpaste.it/j5o4

saddhamma
Posts: 4
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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by saddhamma » Fri Mar 08, 2019 8:18 pm

Hi ToVincent,
I think referencing parallels are great for academic/intellectual discussions but they suffer from the same drawbacks as modern translations from the pali, which tend to be limited by lack of representative words in the language it is being translated to, or by lack of understanding of the dhamma by the translator, or both. The Agamas for example have gone through two translations, first into Sanskrit and then into Chinese so much can be lost in translation.

If one is interested in understanding the dhamma, then the Great reference sutta (AN 4.180) is the golden standard. Here, it is important to note that the "right meaning and phrasing" that characterizes the well-proclaimed dhamma is often lost in translation so knowing Pali becomes important for one who wishes to benefit from the "right meaning and phrasing". The other indispensable factor of the well-proclaimed dhamma is kalyāṇamitta (see SN 3.17). A kalyāṇamitta is one of the three types of people who have understood the dhamma, namely a Buddha, an arahant, or a sekha (see Iti 3.84). The dhamma is well-proclaimed for one who is fortunate enough to have a kalyāṇamitta.

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Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by ToVincent » Fri Mar 08, 2019 8:56 pm

saddhamma wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 8:18 pm
Hi ToVincent,
I think referencing parallels are great for academic/intellectual discussions but they suffer from the same drawbacks as modern translations from the pali, which tend to be limited by lack of representative words in the language it is being translated to, or by lack of understanding of the dhamma by the translator, or both. The Agamas for example have gone through two translations, first into Sanskrit and then into Chinese so much can be lost in translation.

If one is interested in understanding the dhamma, then the Great reference sutta (AN 4.180) is the golden standard. Here, it is important to note that the "right meaning and phrasing" that characterizes the well-proclaimed dhamma is often lost in translation so knowing Pali becomes important for one who wishes to benefit from the "right meaning and phrasing". The other indispensable factor of the well-proclaimed dhamma is kalyāṇamitta (see SN 3.17). A kalyāṇamitta is one of the three types of people who have understood the dhamma, namely a Buddha, an arahant, or a sekha (see Iti 3.84). The dhamma is well-proclaimed for one who is fortunate enough to have a kalyāṇamitta.
Oh! Please, give me a break with those trite commonplace references.
And anyway, AN 4.180 suppose right view, to begin with.

And oh!, benefits in this life (SN 3.17) and in livessss to come (aka rebirthssss), is called the benefits of the kama loka. Where Mara shines (Mara vas).
The lower "heavens"; from which one falls.
I doubt it to be the "understanding" of the Dhamma.
A bit too restricted to my taste.
Nice king's benefit, I suppose.
.
.
Some working for the Mara's world; some for the Brahma's world; some for the Unborn.
.
In this world with its ..., māras, ... in this population with its ascetics.... (AN 5.30).
------
We are all possessed - more or less.
------
And what, bhikkhu, is inward rottenness? Here someone is immoral, one of evil character, of impure and suspect behaviour, secretive in his acts, no ascetic though claiming to be one, not a celibate though claiming to be one, inwardly rotten, corrupt, depraved. This is called inward rottenness.”
SN 35.241
------
https://justpaste.it/j5o4

saddhamma
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:33 pm

Re: SN 46.3 on difference between 4 jhanas and samadhi-sambojjhanga

Post by saddhamma » Sat Mar 09, 2019 1:15 am

Hi ToVincent,
Thanks for your contributions to this thread. I made the comments on the blog not knowing it will generate such interest on this forum. I appreciate all the contributions and do ask for the newbie pardon if I have stepped on any toes. :smile:

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