chownah wrote: ↑Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:31 amA small excerpt from the mn128 link provided by dinsdale:I took "light and vision of forms" as being superhuman distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones......so I thought that this was answering in the affirmative....“Good, good, Anuruddha and friends! But as you live diligently like this, have you achieved any superhuman distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones, a meditation at ease?”
“Well, sir, while meditating diligent, keen, and resolute, we perceive both light and vision of forms. But before long the light and the vision of forms vanish. We haven’t worked out the reason for that.”
For me the entire "superhuman" concept is wrong.......if you look at the link on the first page: fourth post where doodoot gave a link to something thanissaro wrote you will see that he uses "superior human state" instead of "superhuman state" (if my memory of this is correct).....thanissaro's translation clearly calls it a human state which is correct if you consider that the meditator to be human...while "superhuman state" means that the meditator was not human but rather a "superhuman".
I think the point being made is that jhana is a higher meditative attainment requiring some preparation, and not an "ordinary" one. But you don't have to be "superhuman" to do it, and being like mild-mannered Clark Kent is fine.
Though of course jhana isn't exclusive to Buddhism, and Buddhism doesn't have a monopoly on "higher" meditative attainments. So it isn't that special.
A more productive discussion would be around the degree of preparation that is required to attain jhana, though probably that would be a matter of interpretation.