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Anapanasati Vs. jhana - Page 2 - Dhamma Wheel

Anapanasati Vs. 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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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby starter » Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:44 pm

Hello Geoff,

Many thanks for the excellent quotes and advice. Matheesha kindly advised before not to wonder about if it's jhana or not but I forgot it. Indeed "it's far better to continue practicing and developing samādhi, rather than wondering about these types of questions [about jhana itself]. If you're able to commit to renunciation and solitude, then the mind will calm and vipassanā will lead to disenchantment and dispassion. When the mind is calm and clear everything else can fall into place." -- well said.

Metta,

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby Dmytro » Fri Feb 18, 2011 9:24 am

Hi,

There are at least two ways to practice Anapanasati, - with a focus on samatha (jhana, samadhi) and with a focus on vipassana.

The difference between samatha and vipassana practices of Anapanasati is explained on the page 23 of the book "In This Life Itself" by Ven. Dhammajiva:

http://www.vipassana.com/meditation/dha ... /index.php

Samadhi is when the totality (kasina) of perception is coloured by the basis (arammana) of concentration, as described in Kosala sutta:

"There are these ten totality-dimensions. Which ten? One perceives the earth-totality above, below, all-around: non-dual, unlimited. One perceives the water-totality... the fire-totality... the wind-totality... the blue-totality... the yellow-totality... the red-totality... the white-totality... the space-totality... the consciousness-totality above, below, all-around: non-dual, unlimited. These are the ten totalities."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

The reason of establishing remembrance (sati) in the area between the mouth and the nostrils ('', as described in Anapanasati sutta) is to acquire the nimitta (perceptual image) of air, since the Anapanasati jhana is based on the element of air:

Pakatiassāsapakatipassāse nissāya uppannanimittampi assāsapassāsāti nāmaṃ labhati. Upaṭṭhānaṃ satīti taṃ ārammaṇaṃ upecca tiṭṭhatīti sati upaṭṭhānaṃ nāma.

"Sati upatthana" means that 'sati', having approached, is established on that basis (arammana), - nimitta (perceptual image), that arises due to natural inbreath and outbreath.

(Patisambhidamagga-Atthakatha 2.509)

Kiṃ pana pathavīkasiṇaṃ ādiṃ katvā aṭṭhikasaññāpariyosānāvesā rūpāvacarappanā, udāhu aññāpi atthīti? Atthi; ānāpānajjhānañhi kāyagatāsatibhāvanā ca idha na kathitā. Kiñcāpi na kathitā vāyokasiṇe pana gahite ānāpānajjhānaṃ gahitameva; vaṇṇakasiṇesu ca gahitesu kesādīsu catukkapañcakajjhānavasena uppannā kāyagatāsati, dasasu asubhesu gahitesu dvattiṃsākāre paṭikūlamanasikārajjhānavasena ceva navasivathikāvaṇṇajjhānavasena ca pavattā kāyagatāsati gahitāvāti. Sabbāpi rūpāvacarappanā idha kathitāva hotīti.

"But is this all the absorption belonging to the consciousness of the sphere of refined form, beginning with the earth kasiṇa and ending in the perception of the skeleton? Or is there anything else?"
"Yes, there is. There is ānāpāna jhāna and the development of kāyagatāsati, which have not been spoken of here."
"Why not?"
"Because ānāpāna jhāna is included in the air kasiṇa; the development of kāyagatāsati arisen by virtue of the fourfold and fivefold jhānas with reference to the hair etc., is included in the colour kasiṇas; the kāyagatāsati produced by virtue of the jhānas attending to the unattractiveness in the thirty-two parts of the body, and that of the jhāna attending to the colours of the nine kinds of corpses in the charnel grounds is included in the ten repulsive things. Thus all the absorptions of consciousness connected with the sphere of refined form have been included here."

(Dhammasangani-Atthakatha 200)

For practical descriptions of how this can be done, in the case of air, see:

De-perception by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... ption.html

Anapanasati chapter of Vimuttimagga
http://www.archive.org/details/ArahantU ... reedom.pdf

One has to tune in the "airiness" of the air, and gradually spread it all over the body, as Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo describes:

"When you see that a nimitta has appeared, mindfully focus your awareness on it — but be sure to focus on only one at a time, choosing whichever one is most comfortable. Once you've got hold of it, expand it so that it's as large as your head. The bright white nimitta is useful to the body and mind: It's a pure breath that can cleanse the blood in the body, reducing or eliminating feelings of physical pain."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai/lee/inmind.html

The initial perceptual image of the air, thanks to which such 'colouring' of the perception can be done, is called 'nimitta'. This term is mentioned in the suttas in the context of jhana, as for example in the Gavi sutta:

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

and elsewhere - see the thread:
viewtopic.php?f=23&t=2770

Unfortunately, later the sense of the term 'nimitta' was pretty much lost. But it has been regained, for example, in the Pa Auk Sayadaw lineage.

Metta, Dmytro


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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby Dmytro » Fri Feb 18, 2011 9:29 am

P.S. And the best start for Ananapasati is clearing the initial hindrances, as described in Patisambhidamagga:

"Consciousness becoming distracted is avoided for the following six reasons:

(i) By avoiding consciousness which runs after the past (breaths) and is attacked by distraction, (consciousness) is concentrated in one place.[19]

(ii) By avoiding consciousness which looks forward to the future (breaths) and is attacked by wavering, (consciousness) is fixed (there).

(iii) By exerting[20] slack consciousness attacked by indolence, one abandons indolence.

(iv) By restraining[21] over-exerted consciousness attacked by agitation, one abandons agitation.

(v) By being clearly comprehending[22] about consciousness which is attracted and attacked by greed, one abandons greed.

(vi) By being clearly comprehending[23] about consciousness which is discontented and attacked by ill will, one abandons ill will."

http://www.bps.lk/bp_library/bp502s/bp502_part3.html

As described in Vimuttimagga and Visuddhimagga, clearing of these obstacles paves the way to achieving jhana.


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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby starter » Mon Feb 21, 2011 4:26 pm

Hello Dmytro,

Many thanks for kindly translates the following:

"Pakatiassāsapakatipassāse nissāya uppannanimittampi assāsapassāsāti nāmaṃ labhati. Upaṭṭhānaṃ satīti taṃ ārammaṇaṃ upecca tiṭṭhatīti sati upaṭṭhānaṃ nāma.

"Sati upatthana" means that 'sati', having approached, is established on that basis (arammana), - nimitta (perceptual image), that arises due to natural inbreath and outbreath.

(Patisambhidamagga-Atthakatha 2.509)

Kiṃ pana pathavīkasiṇaṃ ādiṃ katvā aṭṭhikasaññāpariyosānāvesā rūpāvacarappanā, udāhu aññāpi atthīti? Atthi; ānāpānajjhānañhi kāyagatāsatibhāvanā ca idha na kathitā. Kiñcāpi na kathitā vāyokasiṇe pana gahite ānāpānajjhānaṃ gahitameva; vaṇṇakasiṇesu ca gahitesu kesādīsu catukkapañcakajjhānavasena uppannā kāyagatāsati, dasasu asubhesu gahitesu dvattiṃsākāre paṭikūlamanasikārajjhānavasena ceva navasivathikāvaṇṇajjhānavasena ca pavattā kāyagatāsati gahitāvāti. Sabbāpi rūpāvacarappanā idha kathitāva hotīti.

"But is this all the absorption belonging to the consciousness of the sphere of refined form, beginning with the earth kasiṇa and ending in the perception of the skeleton? Or is there anything else?"
"Yes, there is. There is ānāpāna jhāna and the development of kāyagatāsati, which have not been spoken of here."
"Why not?"
"Because ānāpāna jhāna is included in the air kasiṇa; the development of kāyagatāsati arisen by virtue of the fourfold and fivefold jhānas with reference to the hair etc., is included in the colour kasiṇas; the kāyagatāsati produced by virtue of the jhānas attending to the unattractiveness in the thirty-two parts of the body, and that of the jhāna attending to the colours of the nine kinds of corpses in the charnel grounds is included in the ten repulsive things. Thus all the absorptions of consciousness connected with the sphere of refined form have been included here."

(Dhammasangani-Atthakatha 200)"

Is Dhammasangani-Atthakatha 200 included in sutta pitaka?

Metta,

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby IanAnd » Mon Feb 21, 2011 5:14 pm

"The gift of truth exceeds all other gifts" — Dhammapada, v. 354 Craving XXIV

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby legolas » Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:16 pm


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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby starter » Tue Feb 22, 2011 4:29 pm

Hello Matheesha,

Since your following posts are more relevant to this thread, I copied them here and would like to continue our discussion in this thread instead.

“Long breath, short breath, whole body of breath, stopping of the breath-30%

Piti, sukha, mental fabrication, calming mental fabrication -60%

Sensitive/experiencing the mind, gladdening the mind, unifying the mind, releasing the mind (first jhana) -100%”

-- If the breath has already stopped at step 4, how can we "shall breathe in/out to experience piti / sukha / ..."? The sequence of the 16 steps doesn't seem to suggest the stopping of the breath at step 4, but rather calmed breath?

"My experience with 'calming the mental fabrication' has been the absorption into nimitta/background of the mind. -A bit like draining the water from the fish tank until the water surface hits the white sand at the bottom."
-- Since I don't tend to use nimitta, I've started trying to experience the stillness of mental fabrication (step 8), which is similar to your absorption into the "background of the mind". I'd like to know if you do this only for step 8, and then move to step 9-10? Do you only return to the breath at step 11 (unifying the mind)?

I'm a bit confused about the the singleness of the mind now. Steps 5-10 don't seem to be only focused on the breathing, but rather on a variety of things (feelings, perceptions, mind, ...) while paying attention to breathing. Only steps 1-4 seem to be single-minded on breathing, or probably also step 11?

Metta,

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Vossaga (Element)

Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby Vossaga (Element) » Tue Feb 22, 2011 9:11 pm

Last edited by Vossaga (Element) on Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:00 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby rowyourboat » Tue Feb 22, 2011 9:16 pm

Hi Starter,

The breath stops only for a few seconds. We use the breath to go in deeper than that- so the breath has to 'start up' again. I would suggest just focusing on the breath for now, without guessing where you are on the anapanasati progression scale. This is because we can jump to wrong conclusions if we are not well traversed on this samadhi 'ladder'. All the first 12 steps will happen on their own- just by focusing on the breath, without anything else added. That is what I would recommend in the first instance.

Note that the monks in the vicinity were already heavily into practice, when he taught the anapanasati sutta- so this is not beginners practice.

with metta

Matheesha
With Metta

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby starter » Wed Feb 23, 2011 1:22 am

Hello Vossaga,

Welcome to our "sanga". It's very nice to have you join us.

Your very helpful advice is most appreciated. To my understanding, you post seems to suggest "Anapanasati" contains 16 stages/experiences rather than 16 steps to be practiced/completed in one sitting by the beginners whose "ariya samma samadhi" hasn't been established or stabilized (?). I also had this thought before and hence practiced for a while the breathing meditation in the satipatthana sutta (which seems to suit the beginners better):
• Step 1 & 2: with mental labeling – breathe in / out while discerning long/short …;
• Step 3: Experiencing the formations/movements of the whole body, breathe in/out;
• Step 4: Experiencing the calmed formations/movements of the whole body, breathe in/out;
• Step 5: Discern this body’s breathing, other bodies’ breathing, this body and other bodies’ breathing;
• Step 6: Discern the arising, ceasing, arising and ceasing of the breathing.
Then the mindfulness/awareness that 'there is a body' (a fine sense of body awareness?) is maintained just to the extent of knowledge & remembrance [by following breathing or imaginary breathing when the breath is not detectable].

Please see my post (viewtopic.php?f=33&t=1631&start=20) for the reason why I interpreted "bodily fabrication" as "the formations/movements of the whole body involved in breathing".

I guess I'd better go back to this set of sitting meditation instead of doing the whole 16 steps of anapanasati now. Of course, as you've already pointed out, I should train myslef in the unification of sila, samadhi & panna, and get established in letting-go of "self" and craving.

Your comments and advice would be most welcome.

Metta,

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby starter » Wed Feb 23, 2011 1:30 am

Hello Matheesha,

Many thanks for your kind advice:

"just by focusing on the breath, without anything else added [to the breath]"
-- do you consider Step 5 &6 of my satipatthana practice (as stated above) as the "added"?

At the beginning of my meditation, I usually need some contemplation ("directed thoughts") to settle my mind.

Metta,

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Vossaga (Element)

Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby Vossaga (Element) » Wed Feb 23, 2011 9:00 am


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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby mlswe » Wed Feb 23, 2011 3:07 pm

Last edited by mlswe on Sun Aug 28, 2011 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby rowyourboat » Wed Feb 23, 2011 5:42 pm

With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby Dmytro » Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:18 pm



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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby starter » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:11 pm

Just to share with you my new understanding of the four jhanas:

"If a monk should wish: 'May I — quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities — enter & remain in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation,' then he should attend carefully to this same concentration through mindfulness of in-&-out breathing.
-- probably equivalent to the commentarial "neighborhood/access samadhi" with piti and sukha [the mind is not yet unified] ?

"If a monk should wish: 'May I, with the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, enter & remain in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance,' then he should attend carefully to this same concentration through mindfulness of in-&-out breathing.
-- probably similar to the 1st level of commentarial jhana [the mind is unified but still has mental and physical feelings]?

"If a monk should wish: 'May I, with the fading of rapture, remain equnimous, mindful, & alert, sense pleasure with the body, and enter & remain in the third jhana, of which the noble ones declare, "Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding,"' then he should attend carefully to this same concentration through mindfulness of in-&-out breathing.
-- probably similar to the 2nd level of commentarial jhana [mental feelings have disappeared but physical feelings/sensations are still present]?

"If a monk should wish: 'May I, with the abandoning of pleasure & stress — as with the earlier disappearance of joys & distresses — enter & remain in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither-pleasure-nor-pain,' then he should attend carefully to this same concentration through mindfulness of in-&-out breathing.
-- probably similar to the deep level of commentarial jhana [both mental and physical feelings/sensations have disappeared]?

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Metta to all!

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby darvki » Fri Mar 18, 2011 1:57 am


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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby altar » Wed Mar 30, 2011 10:41 am

Your approach sounds like a mix of how mine was when starting out, and more recently after reviewing the anapanasati sutta and sariputta's advice to rahula (suttanta). I've found, without reaching jhana, that some of these states do arise, even if for short durations only. I think it's partly due to them arising amidst impurities in the mind, other factors, and partly because of lack of environment and sustainment, and sila. There is the sutta which states that like two sticks rubbed together won't bring fire unless rubbed without stop, one doesn't reach jhana (mental purification of some sort, likely jhana). On the other hand consistency is probably more valuable than short, dedicated spurts. I would be interested to hear more about your practice.

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby starter » Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:26 pm

Hello, I've just found out my previous understanding of the 1st and 2nd jhana (see below) is wrong after reading MN 43. Since the correct understanding of the 1st jhana (according to the Buddha's teaching) is very important for those who wish to be liberated by wisdom, I'd like to share with you about my new understanding:

MN 43:

The first jhana

"What, friend, is the first jhana?"
"There is the case, friend, where a monk — quite withdrawn from sensual pleasures, withdrawn from unskillful qualities — enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. This is called the first jhana."

"And how many factors does the first jhana have?"
"The first jhana has five factors. There is the case where, in a monk who has attained the five-factored first jhana, there occurs directed thought, evaluation, rapture, pleasure, & singleness of mind. It's in this way that the first jhana has five factors."

-- The Buddha's 1st jhana is NOT equivalent to the commentarial "Upacara samadhi" [with piti and sukha but the mind is not yet unified]. Instead the mind is unified [without disturbing thoughts].

"And how many factors are abandoned in the first jhana, and with how many is it endowed?"
"Five factors are abandoned in the first jhana, and with five is it endowed. There is the case where, in a monk who has attained the first jhana, sensual desire is abandoned, ill will is abandoned, sloth & torpor is abandoned, restlessness & anxiety is abandoned, uncertainty is abandoned.
-- This is why the Buddha always emphasized the 1st jhana before Vipassana, because only a hindrance-free mind can see the truth.

And there occur directed thought, evaluation, rapture, pleasure, & singleness of mind. It's in this way that five factors are abandoned in the first jhana, and with five it is endowed."

Metta to all,

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Re: Anapanasati Vs. jhana

Postby Alexei » Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:45 pm



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