The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Discussion of Samatha bhavana and Jhana bhavana.

The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby Modus.Ponens » Sun Nov 07, 2010 11:25 pm

Hello.

I'm curious to know what methods people use to progress through the jhanas. I have my own interpretation based on the Anapanasati Sutta posted here, but that interpretation may well be flawed.

I'm curious. Do you concentrate on the breath (or any other object) and wait for the jhana factors to arise? Do you actively generate the jhana factors as in the instruction of Ajahn Thanissaro for the first jhana _ which basicaly consists of folowing the first steps of the anapanasati sutta sequentialy until one reaches 1st jhana? What do you do after that to progress through the rest of the jhanas? Any other way?

When I'm talking about jhana I'm talking about it in the sense of how it was teached by the Buddha in the suttas, hence this forum being chosen.

Metta.
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby legolas » Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:35 am

I find that a lot of different methods can be used that are appropriate to how you find yourself at the time. One of my personal favourites is to contemplate the similes given by the Buddha for the jhanas. These can aid in understanding what you are aiming for and can help the mind and body unify around the powerful imagery.
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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby Prasadachitta » Mon Nov 08, 2010 9:00 pm

Hi Modus.Ponens,

Your outline sounds good to me. I think of the first three of the four stages (Body, Feelings, Mind) as tending to deepen Jhana. I think of the last stage(dhammas) as tending more towards insight. In the contemplation of dhammas I let go of effort to calm, collect, and energize my mind and allow for much more of a just sit and observe approach. I do this regardless of the degree of calm I have been able to bring about up to that point.


Metta

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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby rowyourboat » Wed Nov 10, 2010 2:51 pm

Hi

I read a sutta where the buddha seemed to say that anapanasati can be used to get into all jhana (sequentially) but I cant find it at the moment. It would be good if someone had the inclination and the goodwill to find it. :smile:

with metta

M
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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby Individual » Wed Nov 10, 2010 6:19 pm

The breathing is just to stabilize the mind and focus concentration. The method itself is not that important. Waiting & allowing vs. Creating & generating is a distinction made because of self. See the delusion there.

If you are actively waiting for jhana to come to oneself, then generate it. If oneself is trying (and failing) to generate jhana, you should wait for it. :)
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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby Kenshou » Wed Nov 10, 2010 6:27 pm

rowyourboat wrote:I read a sutta where the buddha seemed to say that anapanasati can be used to get into all jhana...


That'd be this: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby rowyourboat » Wed Nov 10, 2010 8:59 pm

Kenshou wrote:
rowyourboat wrote:I read a sutta where the buddha seemed to say that anapanasati can be used to get into all jhana...


That'd be this: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


Thanks Kenshou, yes it is great to clap eyes on that sutta again. A wealth of information/instructions on the path.

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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby budo » Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:07 pm

Modus.Ponens wrote:Hello.

I'm curious to know what methods people use to progress through the jhanas. I have my own interpretation based on the Anapanasati Sutta posted here, but that interpretation may well be flawed.

I'm curious. Do you concentrate on the breath (or any other object) and wait for the jhana factors to arise? Do you actively generate the jhana factors as in the instruction of Ajahn Thanissaro for the first jhana _ which basicaly consists of folowing the first steps of the anapanasati sutta sequentialy until one reaches 1st jhana? What do you do after that to progress through the rest of the jhanas? Any other way?

When I'm talking about jhana I'm talking about it in the sense of how it was teached by the Buddha in the suttas, hence this forum being chosen.

Metta.


Can you please link to "instruction of Ajahn Thanissaro for the first jhana" as mentioned in your post. I tried finding it but couldn't.

Metta.
“An effect can become a cause, reinforcing the original cause and producing the same effect in an intensified form, and so on indefinitely.” - George Orwell
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Re: The methods for progressing through the jhanas

Postby Modus.Ponens » Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:56 pm

You can find it here: http://www.dhammatalks.org/ . Once there, press Ctrl+f and write jhana in the small box at the lower left part of the screen. Then find the dhamma talk "A Recipe for Jhana", and I think that's it.

Metta
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