Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
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smokey
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Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby smokey » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:17 am

Please share your tips and tricks about Vipassana and Jhana. What have you learned from your teachers?

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retrofuturist
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Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:20 am

Greetings Smokey,

Regarding vipassana, I have learned this from my teacher.

MN 10: Satipatthana Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)

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Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:21 am

"Keep it simple and easy."
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

Moggalana
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Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby Moggalana » Sat Apr 24, 2010 4:58 pm

I basically stick to Ajahn Brahm's method. At least up to point 5 (Full sustained attention on the beautiful breath). I haven't encountered any visual nimittas yet (at least not as described by Ajahn Brahm), and I'm not exactly sure what to think about them. Ajahn Sona's article, The Mystery of the Breath Nimitta, the discussion here on Dhamma Wheel about tactile Nimittas, and some other posts by IanAnd and other people here have been pretty helpful. Just recently, I have been able to prolong my meditation sessions beyond the 20-30 min barrier and that has been very benificial.

Tips and tricks? Persistence! I'm working on that myself, but I'm pretty convinced that that's the key :)
Let it come. Let it be. Let it go.

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smokey
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Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby smokey » Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:01 pm

Thank you Retrofuturist, Tiltbillings and Moggalana. :anjali:

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Reductor
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Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby Reductor » Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:10 pm

Other than suttas, my main influence has been Ajahn Lee and his seven steps.

I attain jhana before I attempt any kind of insight. That's my own preference, and so I've spent much of my study learning how it is done. Best tip: know the seven factors of enlightenment well. They work for anything, really, jhana or not jhana. But when you apply these factors to one object, like the breath, and keep the mind open and relaxed, then jhana comes. Just, when you start to notice the body and feelings more and more, don't try to stop it, and don't lose the breath by getting distracted by them.

When in jhana you can back off from the object and explore the state with a great deal of ease. Any one of the four frames from MN 10 can be used then with great result.
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72


Kenshou
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Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby Kenshou » Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:30 pm

Lee is quite a good one: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai ... ml#method2

I'm also fond of Thanissaro's interpretation, which is getting at pretty much the same thing: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... 3.html#pre

The state of concentration gotten through this method can definitely be used for vipassana. The mind is stilled to a large extent, but to the degree that focus and clarity are unobscured, not to the point of immobilization. Quite nifty. You can work on satipatthana or aggregate contemplation or mindfulness of the 3 characteristics or whatever, and if your mind gets dull you can take a moment off to rest in the tranquility of it.

One of the more important things I've found in establishing concentration is to really relax, but, you have to gauge how much relaxation is appropriate depending on your starting state of mind. You want relaxation that is conductive to mindfulness and alertness, not dullness. When the mind and body are really comfortable and unworried, palpably infused with ease, like the feeling you might get when you sit down in a comfy chair after a long day, it's a great foundation for deeper concentration.

Also I'll add, in the Mystery of the Breath Nimitta article Moggallana linked to, at the bottom of it there's a little summary going over the initial stages of anapanasati. I find that for me, things happen exactly as he states. Give it a try.

( also, here's a good little composition on jhana that might be useful: http://www.forum.websangha.org/viewtopi ... d78a309451 )

Brizzy

Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby Brizzy » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:29 am

smokey wrote:Please share your tips and tricks about Vipassana and Jhana. What have you learned from your teachers?


I know that one of the most "amazing" :rolleye: breakthroughs I had, was the realisation of enjoyment. I know its obvious really, but if you can generate a real interest/joy in what you are doing it becomes a lot easier. Even now I have to periodically remind myself to be "happy" and generate an interest in the meditation.

:smile:

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Re: Sharing Knowledge about Vipassana and Jhana

Postby PeterB » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:57 am

Its certainly easy to fall into "Clenched Teeth and Bootstraps " syndrome.. :smile:
As always its the middle way isnt it ?


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