Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Discussion of Satipatthana bhavanā and Vipassana bhavana.

Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby kirk5a » Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:54 pm

Question - I have seen it reported a couple places (can't put my finger on where right now sorry) that Ajahn Chah said that if someone in his monastery hadn't entered the stream in 6 months or a year he didn't know what they had been up to the whole time. Does anyone know if Ajahn Chah expressed any further detail on how he regarded stream entry?
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Sambodhi in Oz » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:14 pm

Kirk5a wrote:

I'm remaining open minded to all input, but the idea that stream-entry, at least, requires a meditative cessation of all experience - I just don't see how that fits in with accounts of stream-enterers in the suttas. Some of whom are just listening to the Buddha speak, and clearly have no meditative skills, in an advanced concentration sense, at all. Take Anathapindika the householder. He attained stream entry after hearing the Buddha for the first time. Then many years later, near the very end of Anathapindika's life, Sariputta gives him instructions that are more in the realm of meditation practice per se, and Anathapindika remarks that he has never heard such instruction before. So... I just don't see how it can be said, in cases like that, there must have been meditative cessation of all experience.


My understanding is that due to high paramis some like anathapindaka could experience the four noble truths incl. the cessation on mere hearing of dhamma in a concise manner. similar to Anathapindaka Sariputta became sotapanna on hearing about dhamma in a very concise form from Moggalayana (who himself was only a sotapanna).

Hope this helps.

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Parth :namaste:
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby rowyourboat » Thu Jan 27, 2011 10:31 pm

I think places where ceasing 'nirodha' is mentioned, often found in the 'nibbida' (repulsion), 'viraga' (dispassion) and nirodha combination, refers to just this phenomena of the flame in the process of ceasing or going out. The Buddha comments on what is happening to the observable phenomena as strictly speaking, calling nibbana anything in particular ( including nibbana itself, not to mention pitch black/empty/void etc) is all misleading as to it's true nature. It is best to say what happens to the last bits of the development of the noble eightfold path as it starts ceasing, due to the incredible level of insight into the futility of phenomena at this state (ie- that is why it is ceasing). The third noble truth (nirodha sacca- literally the 'truth of ceasing') can only be experientially understood at this level. There is a sutta in the AN where the forward arising of the paticcasamuppada is called the second noble truth (samudaya sacca- the truth of arising?) and it's 'ceasing' formulation, beginning with 'the ceasing of ignorance leads to the ceasing of fabrications etc..' is called the third noble truth.

If we tie in the commentarial literature along with works of scholarly meditation masters like Ven Matara Nanarama, Ven Mahasi sayadaw a picture emerges that all of these sources are talking of the same thing- pointing in the same direction. So while we delight in arising (insight, wisdom, light etc) to be told that the culmination is actually a cessation is more than a little let down. ...we need to understand the depth of our ignorance in this matter, let go of our previous scholarly accomplishments and accept that we maybe looking at another deepening of the sea-shore of this vast thing called the dhamma. :smile:

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Nyana » Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:34 am

rowyourboat wrote:If we tie in the commentarial literature along with works of scholarly meditation masters like Ven Matara Nanarama, Ven Mahasi sayadaw a picture emerges that all of these sources are talking of the same thing- pointing in the same direction.

Sorry, but the Buddhadhamma and the Pāli Canon are the standard of authority. And it is quite clear that these post-canonical commentarial developments are not supported by the Pāli Canon.

rowyourboat wrote:So while we delight in arising (insight, wisdom, light etc) to be told that the culmination is actually a cessation is more than a little let down. ...we need to understand the depth of our ignorance in this matter, let go of our previous scholarly accomplishments and accept that we maybe looking at another deepening of the sea-shore of this vast thing called the dhamma.

This statement is both condescending and inaccurate. What should be let go of is attachment to teachers who contradict what is taught in the Canon.

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby kirk5a » Fri Jan 28, 2011 3:24 am

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"At Savatthi. "Monks, the eye is inconstant, changeable, alterable. The ear... The nose... The tongue... The body... The mind is inconstant, changeable, alterable.

"One who has conviction & belief that these phenomena are this way is called a faith-follower...

"One who, after pondering with a modicum of discernment, has accepted that these phenomena are this way is called a Dhamma-follower...

"One who knows and sees that these phenomena are this way is called a stream-enterer...

So. I am approaching the matter of meditation with the understanding that the inconstant, changeable, alterable nature of the eye (seeing), ear (hearing), nose (smells), tongue (tastes), body (sensations), and mind (thoughts), is observable directly here and now within the basic context of normal sense experience. If that is so, then what need is there for it all to totally stop?
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby rowyourboat » Fri Jan 28, 2011 8:08 am

On one occasion many elder monks were staying near Varanasi in the Deer Park at Isipatana. Then in the late afternoon Ven. Channa left his seclusion and, taking his key, went from dwelling to dwelling, saying to the elder monks, "May the venerable elders exhort me, may the venerable elders teach me, may the venerable elders give me a Dhamma talk so that I might see the Dhamma."

When this was said, the elder monks said to Ven. Channa, "Form, friend Channa, is inconstant. Feeling is inconstant. Perception is inconstant. Fabrications are inconstant. Consciousness is inconstant. Form is not-self. Feeling is not-self. Perception is not-self. Fabrications are not-self. Consciousness is not-self. All fabrications are inconstant. All phenomena are not-self."

Then the thought occurred to Ven. Channa, "I, too, think that form is inconstant, feeling is inconstant, perception is inconstant, fabrications are inconstant, consciousness is inconstant; form is not-self, feeling is not-self, perception is not-self, fabrications are not-self, consciousness is not-self; all fabrications are inconstant; all phenomena are not-self. But still my mind does not leap up, grow confident, steadfast, & released[1] in the resolution of all fabrications, the relinquishing of all acquisitions, the ending of craving, dispassion, cessation, Unbinding. Instead, agitation & clinging arise, and my intellect pulls back, thinking, 'But who, then, is my self?' But this thought doesn't occur to one who sees the Dhamma. So who might teach me the Dhamma so that I might see the Dhamma?"

Then the thought occurred to Ven. Channa, "This Ven. Ananda is staying at Kosambi in Ghosita's Park. He has been praised by the Teacher and is esteemed by his knowledgeable fellows in the holy life. He is capable of teaching me the Dhamma so that I might see the Dhamma, and I have sudden trust in him. Why don't I go to Ven. Ananda?"

So, setting his lodgings in order and carrying his robes & bowl, Ven. Channa went to Kosambi to where Ven. Ananda was staying in Ghosita's Park. On arrival, he exchanged courteous greetings with the Ven. Ananda. After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, he sat to one side. As he was sitting there, he [told Ven. Ananda what had happened and added], "May Ven. Ananda exhort me, may Ven. Ananda teach me, may Ven. Ananda give me a Dhamma talk so that I might see the Dhamma."

"Even this much makes me feel gratified & satisfied with Ven. Channa, that he opens up & breaks down his stubbornness. So lend ear, friend Channa. You are capable of understanding the Dhamma."

Then a sudden great rapture & joy welled up in Ven. Channa at the thought, "So I am capable of understanding the Dhamma!"

"Face-to-face with the Blessed One have I heard this, friend Channa. Face-to-face with him have I learned the exhortation he gave to the bhikkhu Kaccayanagotta:[2] 'By & large, Kaccayana, this world is supported by[3] a polarity, that of existence & non-existence. But when one sees the origination of the world as it actually is with right discernment, "non-existence" with reference to the world does not occur to one. When one sees the cessation of the world as it actually is with right discernment, "existence" with reference to the world does not occur to one.

"'By & large, Kaccayana, this world is in bondage to attachments, clingings (sustenances), & biases. But one such as this does not get involved with or cling to these attachments, clingings, fixations of awareness, biases, or obsessions; nor is he resolved on "my self." He has no uncertainty or doubt that, when there is arising, only stress is arising; and that when there is passing away, stress is passing away. In this, one's knowledge is independent of others. It is to this extent, Kaccayana, that there is right view.

"'"Everything exists": That is one extreme. "Everything doesn't exist": That is a second extreme. Avoiding these two extremes, the Tathagata teaches the Dhamma via the middle: From ignorance as a requisite condition come fabrications. From fabrications as a requisite condition comes consciousness. From consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form. From name-&-form as a requisite condition come the six sense media. From the six sense media as a requisite condition comes contact. From contact as a requisite condition comes feeling. From feeling as a requisite condition comes craving. From craving as a requisite condition comes clinging/sustenance. From clinging/sustenance as a requisite condition comes becoming. From becoming as a requisite condition comes birth. From birth as a requisite condition, then aging & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair come into play. Such is the origination of this entire mass of stress & suffering.

"'Now from the remainderless fading & cessation of that very ignorance comes the cessation of fabrications. From the cessation of fabrications comes the cessation of consciousness. From the cessation of consciousness comes the cessation of name-&-form. From the cessation of name-&-form comes the cessation of the six sense media. From the cessation of the six sense media comes the cessation of contact. From the cessation of contact comes the cessation of feeling. From the cessation of feeling comes the cessation of craving. From the cessation of craving comes the cessation of clinging/sustenance. From the cessation of clinging/sustenance comes the cessation of becoming. From the cessation of becoming comes the cessation of birth. From the cessation of birth, then aging & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair all cease. Such is the cessation of this entire mass of stress & suffering.'

"That's how it is, friend Ananda, for those who have friends in the holy life like Ven. Ananda — sympathetic, helpful, exhorting, & teaching. Just now, for me, listening to Ven. Ananda's Dhamma-teaching, has the Dhamma been penetrated."

Notes:

For me this sutta clearly suggests that Ven Channa knew that after seeing impermanence of the five aggregates (ie everything) that 'the resolution of all fabrications (sabbe sankara samathaya), which is another name for nibbana, should manifest. Equally Ven Ananda asks him to put his stubbornness aside and be open to the dhamma. If he hadn't done that Ven Channa would not have become a stream entrant.
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Sambodhi in Oz » Fri Jan 28, 2011 5:51 pm

kirk5a wrote:

"One who has conviction & belief that these phenomena are this way is called a faith-follower...

"One who, after pondering with a modicum of discernment, has accepted that these phenomena are this way is called a Dhamma-follower...

"One who knows and sees that these phenomena are this way is called a stream-enterer...

So. I am approaching the matter of meditation with the understanding that the inconstant, changeable, alterable nature of the eye (seeing), ear (hearing), nose (smells), tongue (tastes), body (sensations), and mind (thoughts), is observable directly here and now within the basic context of normal sense experience. If that is so, then what need is there for it all to totally stop?


The cessation is the experience of nibbana ! there is also a difference between the way a sotapanna observes the arising and passing away of sensations and the way a normal worldling would. A sotapanna always starts from udaya vyaya nana (4th nana) of vipassana and can therefore observe the sensations of any place of his body as soon has he desires to do so whereas, a normal worldling has to start from the start i.e. namarupa pariccheda nana. In your quote above when it is said that the stream enterer 'knows and sees' he really 'knows and sees'.

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby kirk5a » Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:16 pm

parth wrote:The cessation is the experience of nibbana !

Ok. Well, it seems, apparently, from my perspective (what do I know) there is some kind of disagreement between teachers. When I read, for example, Ajahn Sumedho's recent article "Nirvana Now" http://www.abhayagiri.org/main/article/2147/ it would seem to be a different understanding of "cessation." Thoughts on this?
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Sambodhi in Oz » Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:53 pm

Dear kirk5a,

In the article the word cessation is used at one place :
It is what it is. What arises ceases. As we recognize that and allow things to cease according to their nature, the realization of cessation gives us an increasing amount of faith in the practice of nonattachment and letting go.


here the word 'cessation' is used for 'passing away' i.e. sensation arises and passes away, all good bad and neutral things (so called) arise and pass away. The article otherwise urges people to try and think of nibbana as something which can be attianed and not to start by thinking out nibbana as something which is too high to be attained in this lifetime as, this thought itself can become a block.

read the concluding part among others:

“Sir,” he said, “there are people stuck midstream in the terror and the fear of the rush of the river of being, and death and decay overwhelm them. For their sakes, Sir, tell me where to find an island, tell me where there is solid ground beyond the reach of all this pain.”

“Kappa,” said the Master, “for the sake of those people stuck in the middle of the river of being, overwhelmed by death and decay, I will tell you where to find solid ground.

“There is an island, an island which you cannot go beyond. It is a place of nothingness, a place of non-possession and of non-attachment. It is the total end of death and decay, and this is why I call it Nibbana [the extinguished, the cool].

“There are people who, in mindfulness, have realized this and are completely cooled here and now. They do not become slaves working for Mara, for Death; they cannot fall into his power.”


Nibbana is defined as a cessation becuause in that state suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning, the concept of 'I' also is supposed to vanish.

Hope this clarifies.

Metta

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Nyana » Fri Jan 28, 2011 8:32 pm

parth wrote:Nibbana is defined as a cessation becuause in that state suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning, the concept of 'I' also is supposed to vanish.

Firstly, nibbāna isn't a "state." Secondly, nibbāna is the cessation of passion, aggression, and delusion. For a learner it is the cessation of the fetters extinguished on each path. The waking states where "suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning" are (1) mundane perceptionless samādhis, and (2) cessation of apperception and feeling. Neither of these are supramundane and neither of these are synonymous with experiencing nibbāna.

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jan 28, 2011 8:46 pm

Ñāṇa wrote:
parth wrote:Nibbana is defined as a cessation becuause in that state suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning, the concept of 'I' also is supposed to vanish.

Firstly, nibbāna isn't a "state." Secondly, nibbāna is the cessation of passion, aggression, and delusion. For a learner it is the cessation of the fetters extinguished on each path. The waking states where "suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning" are (1) mundane perceptionless samādhis, and (2) cessation of apperception and feeling. Neither of these are supramundane and neither of these are synonymous with experiencing nibbāna.

All the best,

Geoff
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Jan 28, 2011 10:03 pm

This whole thread seems very strange to me, since it appears to be starting from statements purportedly about Mahasi Sayadaw's teachings, which simply sound confused to me. What is described in the OP would be diagnosed by the teachers I know as a pointless, "stuck", state (as Alexi rightly comments). I've not experienced such a "pitch black" state, but I've certainly experienced states where everything seems to be grinding to a halt, and have discussed with my teachers how to get past that. So I can certainly imagine how such a "pitch black emptiness" state could arise.

The following description From Mahasi Sayadaw's "Progress of Insight" don't read to me like "pitch black emptiness":
http://aimwell.org/Books/Mahasi/Progres ... l#Maturity
Immediately afterwards, a type of knowledge manifests itself that, as it were, falls for the first time into Nibbāna, which is void of formations (conditioned phenomena) since it is the cessation of them.


:anjali:
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby rowyourboat » Sat Jan 29, 2011 8:05 am

mikenz66 wrote:This whole thread seems very strange to me, since it appears to be starting from statements purportedly about Mahasi Sayadaw's teachings, which simply sound confused to me. What is described in the OP would be diagnosed by the teachers I know as a pointless, "stuck", state (as Alexi rightly comments). I've not experienced such a "pitch black" state, but I've certainly experienced states where everything seems to be grinding to a halt, and have discussed with my teachers how to get past that. So I can certainly imagine how such a "pitch black emptiness" state could arise.

The following description From Mahasi Sayadaw's "Progress of Insight" don't read to me like "pitch black emptiness":
http://aimwell.org/Books/Mahasi/Progres ... l#Maturity
Immediately afterwards, a type of knowledge manifests itself that, as it were, falls for the first time into Nibbāna, which is void of formations (conditioned phenomena) since it is the cessation of them.


:anjali:
Mike


Hi Mike

All of experience is conditioned phenomena. So what is this place that is devoid of conditioned phenomena? It is an experience not reached before at any point in the development of vipassana. It is not simply arising and passing away (which is suffering) but the end of arising and passing away -the ending of suffering.
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby rowyourboat » Sat Jan 29, 2011 8:14 am

kirk5a wrote:
parth wrote:The cessation is the experience of nibbana !

Ok. Well, it seems, apparently, from my perspective (what do I know) there is some kind of disagreement between teachers. When I read, for example, Ajahn Sumedho's recent article "Nirvana Now" http://www.abhayagiri.org/main/article/2147/ it would seem to be a different understanding of "cessation." Thoughts on this?


Ajhan Sumedo writes:

As one begins to realize or to recognize nongrasping as the Way, then emotionally one can feel quite frightened by it. It can seem like a kind of annihilation is taking place: all that I think I am in the world, all that I regard as stable and real, starts falling apart and that can be frightening. But if we have the faith to continue bearing these emotional reactions and allow things that arise to cease, to appear and disappear according to their nature, then we find our stability, not in achievement or attaining, but in being—being awake, being aware.


This is a description of bhanga nana (knowledge of dissolution) leading to bhaya nana (knoweldge of the fearfulness of fabrications) and aadinava nana (knowledge of drawbacks of existence). The final bit seems to be about sankhara upekkha (equanimity of formations) where stability is reached. But the process is not complete...

In English, “nothingness” can sound like annihilation, like nihilism. But you can also emphasize the “thingness” so that it becomes “no-thingness.” So nibbana is not a thing that you can find. It is the place of “no-thingness,’” a place of nonpossession, a place of nonattachment. It is a place, as Ajahn Chah said, where you experience “the reality of nongrasping.” Nibbana is a reality that each one of us can know for ourselves—once we recognize nonattachment and realize the reality of nongrasping.


Ajhan Sumedo is talking to an English/Western audience- I don't think he would talk of nothingness on a whim at the end of his sermon. This is about nibbana (following on from his extract from the suttas), and it is hard to appreciate/digest. Non-grasping is one of the most powerfully developed qualities which can be discerned immediately before entering this state.

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Sambodhi in Oz » Sat Jan 29, 2011 11:48 am

Nana wrote :

parth wrote:
Nibbana is defined as a cessation becuause in that state suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning, the concept of 'I' also is supposed to vanish.

Firstly, nibbāna isn't a "state." Secondly, nibbāna is the cessation of passion, aggression, and delusion. For a learner it is the cessation of the fetters extinguished on each path. The waking states where "suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning" are (1) mundane perceptionless samādhis, and (2) cessation of apperception and feeling. Neither of these are supramundane and neither of these are synonymous with experiencing nibbāna.

All the best,

Geoff


Dear Geoff,

When I said 'state' I meant from the meditators point of view when he is experiencing 'nibbana' and how it may be experienced while one is practising vipassana otherwise theoretically speaking
it is the cessation of the fetters extinguished on each path
may be correct.

On the 2nd part dont agree that these are not synonymous with experiencing nibbana, dont think that any samadhi includes cessation of all six senses (incl mind since even in arupa jhanas mind continues) but would not want to get into a debate on this since, the discussion itself is useless.

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby kirk5a » Sat Jan 29, 2011 4:49 pm

http://archive.thebuddhadharma.com/issu ... amaro.html
"The concept of cessation is very familiar in the Theravada tradition. Even though it's supposed to be synonymous with nibbana, it's sometimes put forth as some event that we're all seeking, where all experience will vanish and then we'll be fine: "A great god will come from the sky, take away everything and make everybody feel high." I don't want to get obsessed about words, but we suffer a lot or get confused because of misunderstandings like this. When we talk about stopping consciousness, do you think that means "Let's all get unconscious?” It can't be that, can it? The Buddha was not extolling the virtues of unconsciousness. Otherwise thorazine or barbiturates would be the way: "Give me the anesthetic and we're on our way to nibbana." But obviously that's not it. Understanding what is meant by stopping or cessation is thus pretty crucial here."

My question exactly. I was wondering how, if cessation is regarded as simply the cessation of all experience, how it was different from general anesthesia, where just such a cessation takes place. There is no thinking, seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching. There is no experience whatsoever, not even of pitch black emptiness or of the passing of any time. No suffering of course, that being the point of the procedure. And is of no value beyond allowing an operation to be undergone.
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Sambodhi in Oz » Sat Jan 29, 2011 5:26 pm

kirk5a wrote:

"The concept of cessation is very familiar in the Theravada tradition. Even though it's supposed to be synonymous with nibbana, it's sometimes put forth as some event that we're all seeking, where all experience will vanish and then we'll be fine: "A great god will come from the sky, take away everything and make everybody feel high."


Nibbana may not be what we all are seeking, what u seek depends on you and it is certainly not a great God from the sky, infect this phrase makes me feel that you are not even familier with buddhist beliefs.

When we talk about stopping consciousness, do you think that means "Let's all get unconscious?” It can't be that, can it? The Buddha was not extolling the virtues of unconsciousness. Otherwise thorazine or barbiturates would be the way: "Give me the anesthetic and we're on our way to nibbana." But obviously that's not it. Understanding what is meant by stopping or cessation is thus pretty crucial here."

My question exactly. I was wondering how, if cessation is regarded as simply the cessation of all experience, how it was different from general anesthesia, where just such a cessation takes place. There is no thinking, seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching. There is no experience whatsoever, not even of pitch black emptiness or of the passing of any time. No suffering of course, that being the point of the procedure. And is of no value beyond allowing an operation to be undergone.


By becoming uncounscious u do not really loose unconsciousness at a sub conscious level everything continues or death should have been the end. Nibbana is not something which can be defined in words much less written.

By reading what you have written, you seem to be absolutely new to dhamma and would request you to practise meditation first and ask these questions later.

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby kirk5a » Sat Jan 29, 2011 6:03 pm

Hi Parth

Just to clarify, the first paragraph above is Ajahn Amaro's, from the link at the top. The second paragraph is mine.

As for definition, you did offer this definition

"Nibbana is defined as a cessation becuause in that state suddenly all sensations and six senses stop functioning, the concept of 'I' also is supposed to vanish."
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Nyana » Sat Jan 29, 2011 9:35 pm

parth wrote:Nibbana may not be what we all are seeking, what u seek depends on you and it is certainly not a great God from the sky, infect this phrase makes me feel that you are not even familier with buddhist beliefs.

Ajahn Amaro is "not even familiar with Buddhist beliefs"? :shock:

All the best,

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Re: Pitch-black emptiness and Mahasi Sayadaw technique

Postby Nyana » Sat Jan 29, 2011 9:53 pm

parth wrote:When I said 'state' I meant from the meditators point of view when he is experiencing 'nibbana' and how it may be experienced while one is practising vipassana

Well, to be precise, the state wherein one experiences the extinguishment (nibbāna) of fetters appropriate to each path and fruition, is supramundane jhāna (lokuttarajjhāna). And this state must necessarily arise with the concomitant jhāna factors and other mental factors such as attention (manasikāra) and apperception (saññā), as well as gnosis (ñāṇa). Without the presence of these mental factors there can be no gnosis and therefore no path attainment or fruition attainment.

parth wrote:otherwise theoretically speaking "it is the cessation of the fetters extinguished on each path" may be correct.

The Paṭisambhidāmagga explicitly states that this is correct.

parth wrote:On the 2nd part dont agree that these are not synonymous with experiencing nibbana

The Kathāvatthu and the Visuddhimagga both maintain that the cessation of apperception and feeling is not not-conditioned (asaṅkhata) and is not supramundane (lokuttara).

All the best,

Geoff
Nyana
 
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