jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Jan 17, 2013 7:48 pm

lojong1 wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:sure, it is a formless attainment, which in the Buddhist scheme stems from the fourth Jhana.

I'm not convinced of this either, even though it is often mentioned after the jhanas. The stock phrase "having attained [4th jhana]" never connects them as far as I've seen, then the whole childhood tree sit and Alara Kalama dealy, and weren't there some Transcendental Meditators who thought they were skipping straight to the formless?...

hi Lojong,
Can you show one instance the formless attainments are treated separately?
I ask because I can not think of any case of this happening.
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Jan 17, 2013 7:50 pm

alan... wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:
alan... wrote:i think you guys are debating something that you both agree on. citta said something about alara using jhana, dave just made roughly the same point, citta agrees but didn't quite get what dave was getting at, dave gets citta and so on.

alara taught jhana, citta agrees on this and so does dave.

not debating but doubt we are agreeing bearing this in mind
daverupa wrote:The four jhanas and formless attainments are unrelated. One can attain jhana, and not the formless attainments. One can attain the formless attainments, and not jhana.


oh okay lol. i didn't see that and thought this was an odd misunderstanding.

I wouldn't of asked if that wasn't there and would of understood it the way you did if it wasn't.

EDIT=
plus there was this also
sphere of nothingness =/= jhana

the =/= is a representation of the ≠ meaning (in mathmatics) not equal too. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equals_sign#Not_equal
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby daverupa » Thu Jan 17, 2013 8:48 pm

Cittasanto wrote:Can you show one instance the formless attainments are treated separately?


One occasion is MN 121. Another is MN 106.
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby lojong1 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:32 pm

Cittasanto wrote:Can you show one instance the formless attainments are treated separately?

I'm looking. mettam sutta has lots of weaselly ors, but concentration-enlightenment-factor replaces explicit jhana.

maha-nidana sutta relates infinite space to stations of consciousness, and any link between these beings and jhana is hidden from me right now.
"There are beings who,with the complete transcending of perceptions of [physical] form, with the disappearance of perceptions of resistance, and not heeding perceptions of diversity, [perceiving,] 'Infinite space,' arrive at the dimension of the infinitude of space."

Ananda Sutta
Here's what I was looking for -- straight into infinite space.
"[Ananda:] "There is the case where, with the complete transcending of perceptions of [physical] form,[...] one enters & remains in the dimension of the infinitude of space."

uh-oh! This translation of Vihara Sutta says the 9 attainments are "step-by-step."

I'll keep looking.
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby mirco » Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:44 pm

alan... wrote:i read an article about pre buddhist jhana but it doesn't specify whether or not this practice continued into hinduism or if it did, how it was/is regarded. at least not that i saw, i skimmed some and did a couple of ctrl+f word searches for words like "hinduism", "vedas" and so on. it talks about a group called "Parama-diṭṭhadhamma-nibbānavāda" or perhaps this is a person? i'm not clear on that and a web search was fruitless. does anyone know more of the details on this or have any opinions?

Maybe this is of interest for you:

Biswadeb Mukherjee:
A Pre-Buddhist Meditation System and its Early Modifications by Gotama the Boddhisattva -> go "Articles"

(-: Regards
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:01 pm

daverupa wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:Can you show one instance the formless attainments are treated separately?


One occasion is MN 121. Another is MN 106.


Thank-you
MN121 does mention "attends to the singleness based on the perception of earth" which would suggest the Jhana factor, and maybe the origin of the Earth Nimita. but I will point you to
MN137 wrote:"There is equanimity coming from multiplicity, dependent on multiplicity; and there is equanimity coming from singleness, dependent on singleness.

"And what is equanimity coming from multiplicity, dependent on multiplicity? There is equanimity with regard to forms, equanimity with regard to sounds...smells...tastes...tactile sensations [& ideas: this word appears in one of the recensions]. This is equanimity coming from multiplicity, dependent on multiplicity.

I would argue here that this singleness is not equivalent between the two, as there are other describers, but refers to the jhana factor and the multiplicity of MN137 {Edit=}which does have some support in
AN9.42 wrote:"Then there is the case where a monk, with the complete transcending of perceptions of form, with the disappearance of perceptions of resistance, and not heeding perceptions of diversity, [perceiving,] 'Infinite space,' enters & remains in the dimension of the infinitude of space.
}

MN106 talks about the mind being immeasurable, & well developed. immeasurable always refers to the Brahmaviharas and well developed would refer to the practice of them. This too is able to reach Jhana, but I do not know of an instance where the suttas are explicit here. so although I do not agree that this is an instance I can not show otherwise.
{Edit = although do see footnote 1
Although the initial description does suggest that the hindrances have been overcome which does suggest Jhana itself, but the alternative to the imperturbable (which can refer to the fourth Jhana as some of the inline notes and footnotes mention) of being commited to discernment seams to sugest Vippasana practice which is often Yoked together with Jhana within the sutta}
Last edited by Cittasanto on Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:36 pm, edited 4 times in total.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby lojong1 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:09 pm

lojong1 wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:...formless attainment...stems from the fourth Jhana.

I'm not convinced of this...

Pancala Sutta says the formless stems from the 4th; another obstacle to the neat and easy.
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:14 pm

I realise that I didn't quite grasp what you were saying in the second reply so this responce does not matter please delete mods TY
Last edited by Cittasanto on Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:34 pm

lojong1 wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:Can you show one instance the formless attainments are treated separately?

I'm looking. mettam sutta has lots of weaselly ors, but concentration-enlightenment-factor replaces explicit jhana.

see footnote 4 also.

maha-nidana sutta relates infinite space to stations of consciousness, and any link between these beings and jhana is hidden from me right now.
"There are beings who,with the complete transcending of perceptions of [physical] form, with the disappearance of perceptions of resistance, and not heeding perceptions of diversity, [perceiving,] 'Infinite space,' arrive at the dimension of the infinitude of space."

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

Ananda Sutta
Here's what I was looking for -- straight into infinite space.
"[Ananda:] "There is the case where, with the complete transcending of perceptions of [physical] form,[...] one enters & remains in the dimension of the infinitude of space."

I disagree as although it is not outright it does infer some practice before that where one is "percipient" and the next Q which has the answer involving the infinitude of space is telling also.

uh-oh! This translation of Vihara Sutta says the 9 attainments are "step-by-step."

that doesn't mean they always have to be percieved as step by step. I think it was Ajahn Thanisaro who has a transcribed talk about this but could not find it???
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:09 am

daverupa wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:Does not one have to attain the first four jhanas before moving on to the second four?


The four jhanas and formless attainments are unrelated. One can attain jhana, and not the formless attainments. One can attain the formless attainments, and not jhana.

The suttas support that?
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.

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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby polarbuddha101 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:33 am

tiltbillings wrote:
daverupa wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:Does not one have to attain the first four jhanas before moving on to the second four?


The four jhanas and formless attainments are unrelated. One can attain jhana, and not the formless attainments. One can attain the formless attainments, and not jhana.

The suttas support that?


I think they do.

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

I think the lesser discourse on emptiness shows how the formless attainments can be learned without going through the jhanas first. Seems pretty clear to me.

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

Why would the Buddha recall entering the first jhana as a child and then realize that jhana was the way to awakening if he had already used the 4 jhanas under Alara Kalama and Ramaputta to get to the dimensions of nothingness and neither perception nor non-perception just years before his awakening?
Last edited by polarbuddha101 on Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby equilibrium » Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:35 am

tiltbillings wrote:
daverupa wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:Does not one have to attain the first four jhanas before moving on to the second four?


The four jhanas and formless attainments are unrelated. One can attain jhana, and not the formless attainments. One can attain the formless attainments, and not jhana.

The suttas support that?

IMPOSSIBLE!
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby daverupa » Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:44 am

tiltbillings wrote:
daverupa wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:Does not one have to attain the first four jhanas before moving on to the second four?


The four jhanas and formless attainments are unrelated. One can attain jhana, and not the formless attainments. One can attain the formless attainments, and not jhana.

The suttas support that?


It's an inductive claim; I will indicate some general themes:

-formless attainments are an add-on to the 4-jhana pericope, which was the original formulation in the earlier part of Nikaya creation. definitions of sammasamadhi reflect this, along with the fourth jhana being repeatedly cited as the foundation for tevijja, with the four-then-five formless attainments quickly appearing during Nikaya creation. the tradition remembers they are optional.

-the ninth formless attainment appears to be from a rather late stage in this process, and a developmental progression can be discerned in its formulation.

-the two teachers the Bodhisatta studied under taught (versions of) two of the four formless attainments, so this sort of bhavana was known in the bahmana-samana milieu. the Upanisads had their own bhavana methods, and the formless attainments are good candidates for being related methods, perhaps even explicit examples.

-bahmana-samana converts would have been very conversant with these formless methods and their theories & cosmologies. this utterly permeates the worldview of the compiler-reciters; it is not original, but it is pervasive.

-the Bodhisatta recalled his earlier experience, not something learned from another, when introducing jhana. later, the Buddha emphasizes "do jhana" because this is what allows for the destruction of the asavas. the formless attainments cannot do this.

&c.

FWIW
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby SarathW » Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:05 am

Hi Alan
I was doing lot of Nifty (experimental) things and got nifty experience in the past.
Though I was born as a Buddhist I did not have any clue for real teaching for a long time.
So I spent lot of time learning Christianity, Hinduism , Islam, Judaism and many more.
I think they all help me to put the things in perspective.
Now I know where all these thing fits together.
Remember Buddha also did lot of nifty things before his enlightenment.
The Hinduism link I used was:
http://www.hinduism.co.za/

PS:Please do not waste lot of your time as I did! :)
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby alan... » Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:18 am

SarathW wrote:Hi Alan
I was doing lot of Nifty (experimental) things and got nifty experience in the past.
Though I was born as a Buddhist I did not have any clue for real teaching for a long time.
So I spent lot of time learning Christianity, Hinduism , Islam, Judaism and many more.
I think they all help me to put the things in perspective.
Now I know where all these thing fits together.
Remember Buddha also did lot of nifty things before his enlightenment.
The Hinduism link I used was:
http://www.hinduism.co.za/

PS:Please do not waste lot of your time as I did! :)


good advice thanks. seems to me that jhana is a magnifying glass. without the right stuff underneath it won't help reach dhammmic goals. but with all the right info and contemplations and other prerequisites suddenly everything comes into focus when you enter jhana. i have no intention of goofing around with the jhanas, i was mainly just curious about their uses in other traditions and specifically who the group(s) were that used them before the buddha.
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:21 am

alan... wrote:
good advice thanks. seems to me that jhana is a magnifying glass. without the right stuff underneath it won't help reach dhammmic goals. but with all the right info and contemplations and other prerequisites suddenly everything comes into focus when you enter jhana.



After only a year and a half of practice at Wat Ba Pong, one American monk asked and received permission [from Ajahn Chah] to travel and study with other Thai and Burmese teachers. A year or two later, he returned full of tales of his travels, of many months of extraordinary and intensive practice and of a number of remarkable experiences. . . . Then the Western monk went to the cottage of Achaan Sumedho, the senior Western disciple of Achaan Chah, and told all his stories and adventures, his new understandings and great insights into practice. Sumedho listened in silence and prepared afternoon tea from the roots of certain forest plants. When the stories were completed and the insights recounted, Sumedho smiled and said, "Ah, how wonderful. Something else to let go of."
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.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby alan... » Sat Jan 19, 2013 8:49 am

tiltbillings wrote:
alan... wrote:
good advice thanks. seems to me that jhana is a magnifying glass. without the right stuff underneath it won't help reach dhammmic goals. but with all the right info and contemplations and other prerequisites suddenly everything comes into focus when you enter jhana.



After only a year and a half of practice at Wat Ba Pong, one American monk asked and received permission [from Ajahn Chah] to travel and study with other Thai and Burmese teachers. A year or two later, he returned full of tales of his travels, of many months of extraordinary and intensive practice and of a number of remarkable experiences. . . . Then the Western monk went to the cottage of Achaan Sumedho, the senior Western disciple of Achaan Chah, and told all his stories and adventures, his new understandings and great insights into practice. Sumedho listened in silence and prepared afternoon tea from the roots of certain forest plants. When the stories were completed and the insights recounted, Sumedho smiled and said, "Ah, how wonderful. Something else to let go of."


to clarify: what i meant was that if you have fulfilled the other eight steps on the path and deeply considered anicca, dukkha and anatta and THEN you sit in jhana you will be able to see clearly anicca dukkha and anatta and thus let go of your attachments to ideas of self and permanence. the full circle of the path leading back to right view. i wasn't saying jhana magnifies any kind of wonderful things to attach to, i was saying it magnifies the ideas of the path which automatically lead to detachment.

so fulfilling the path will help to let go and then sitting in jhana will magnify this and make it even easier to let go. jhana alone is just mental states to be let go of, but jhana used as a magnifier helps one to realize how to let go of the three poisons and why to let them go. it's all about letting go from step one to step eight which happens to be jhana. what i described is the fulfillment of the path. you line everything up with the seven previous steps and then put them under the magnifying glass of jhanic concentration.

so the post of mine that is quoted above this little story really has nothing in common with this traveling monk accruing fantastical mental events and thinking them special when really they are just to be let go of. i understand the purpose of jhana and i don't mistake if for some adventure or something to hold on to.
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:02 am

alan... wrote:to clarify: what i meant was that if you have fulfilled the other eight steps on the path and deeply considered anicca, dukkha and anatta and THEN you sit in jhana you will be able to see clearly anicca dukkha and anatta and thus let go of your attachments to ideas of self and permanence. the full circle of the path leading back to right view. i wasn't saying jhana magnifies any kind of wonderful things to attach to, i was saying it magnifies the ideas of the path which automatically lead to detachment.
Sounds like a conceptual process you are describing.
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.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby alan... » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:05 am

tiltbillings wrote:
alan... wrote:to clarify: what i meant was that if you have fulfilled the other eight steps on the path and deeply considered anicca, dukkha and anatta and THEN you sit in jhana you will be able to see clearly anicca dukkha and anatta and thus let go of your attachments to ideas of self and permanence. the full circle of the path leading back to right view. i wasn't saying jhana magnifies any kind of wonderful things to attach to, i was saying it magnifies the ideas of the path which automatically lead to detachment.
Sounds like a conceptual process you are describing.


a conceptual process that leads to detachment, cessation, nibbana, yes. i'm describing the eightfold path as depicted in the suttas, what are you describing?
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Re: jhana pre buddhist, hinduism today and so on.

Postby robertk » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:12 am

Just to note that the mundane jhanas mentioned in the suttas are the same as those attained by wise ascetics at pre budda times.
For those who master the jhanas ( no longer possible at this time) they can be used as a basis for insight by seeong thir inherent instability.
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