MN 27 wrote:“Again, with the abandoning of pleasure and pain, and with the previous disappearance of joy and grief, a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the fourth jhāna, which has neither-pain-nor-pleasure and purity of mindfulness due to equanimity. ...
“When his concentrated mind is thus purified, bright, unblemished, rid of imperfection, malleable, wieldy, steady, and attained to imperturbability, he directs it to knowledge of the recollection of past lives. ...
... he directs it to knowledge of the passing away and reappearance of beings. ...
... he directs it to knowledge of the destruction of the taints. He understands as it actually is: ‘This is suffering’;…‘This is the origin of suffering’;…‘This is the cessation of suffering’;…‘This is the way leading to the cessation of suffering’;…‘These are the taints’;…‘This is the origin of the taints’;…‘This is the cessation of the taints’;…‘This is the way leading to the cessation of the taints.’
"And what, Ananda is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters? Here, with seclusion from the acquisitions, with the abandoning of unwholesome states, with the complete tranquillization of bodily inertia, quite secluded from sensual pleasures, secluded from unwholesome states, a bhikkhu enters upon and abides in the first jhana, which is accompanied by applied and sustained thought, with rapture and pleasure born of seclusion.
"Whatever exists therein of material form, feeling, perception, formations and consciousness, he sees those states as impermanent, as suffering, as a disease, as a tumour, as a barb, as a calamity, as an affliction, as alien, as disintegrating, as void, as not self. He turns his mind away from those states and directs it towards the deathless element thus: 'This is the peaceful, this is the sublime, that is, the stilling of all formations, the relinquishing of all attachments, the destruction of craving, dispassion, cessation, Nibbana. If he is steady in that, he attains the destruction of the taints. But if he does not attain the destruction of the taints because of that desire for the Dhamma, that delight in the Dhamma, then with the destruction of the five lower fetters he becomes one due to reappear spontaneously [in the Pure Abodes] and there attain final Nibbana without ever returning from that world. This is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower fetters
"The knowledge and vision of things as they really are, monks, also has a supporting condition, I say, it does not lack a supporting condition. And what is the supporting condition for the knowledge and vision of things as they really are? 'Concentration' should be the reply.
Yathābhūtañāṇadassanampahaṃ bhikkhave saupanisaṃ vadāmi, no anupanisaṃ. Kā ca bhikkhave, yathābhūtañāṇadassanassa upanisā? Samādhītissa vacanīyaṃ.
mikenz66 wrote:Numerous suttas have the gradual training pattern of:
Virtue, sense restraint, mindfulness and alertness, abandoning the hindrances, jhana, knowledge and liberation. Jhana seems to be a preparation for liberating insight in those suttas:
Mkoll wrote: The experience of jhana is incomparably peaceful and sublime. With the wisdom one has developed, one sees that even the most peaceful and sublime states are impermanent and conditioned. One's mind becomes "disgusted" even with jhana and one directs the mind to the deathless, Nibbana.
Spiny Norman wrote:What is the purpose of developing jhana...?
cooran wrote:Hello Manas,
Bhikkhu Bodhi seems to indicate that, though Jhanas may be attained earlier, they are necessary for a Non-Returner onwards:
Jhanas and the lay Disciple according to the Pali Suttas
"Staying right there, he reaches the ending of the mental fermentations. Or, if not, then — through this very dhamma-passion, this very dhamma-delight, and from the total wasting away of the first five of the fetters — he is due to be reborn [in the Pure Abodes], there to be totally unbound, never again to return from that world.
"'I tell you, the ending of the mental fermentations depends on the first jhana.' Thus was it said, and in reference to this was it said.
Ven. Thanissaro: The purpose is to get the mind steady enough, long enough, so it can see. When it sees, it can let go. When it lets go, it’s free. That’s what this practice is all about. That’s what the Buddha meant when he said, “Go, do jhana.” It encompasses all of the aspects of developing the mind.I read the Bhikkhu Bodhi article, and it is interesting to see the argument that stream entry may be attainable without jhana. By comparison, Ven. Thanissaro suggests that jhana is at the core of the meditation process.
Dhammanando wrote: Bhikkhu Bodhi is using 'jhāna' in the sense of the states of meditative absorption (the four rūpajjhānas), while Ven. Thanissaro is using it in its broader Sutta sense, where it is virtually synonymous with bhāvanā and encompasses the full range of activities involved in mental development.
Dhammanando wrote:For this reason I think the rendering of "Jhāyatha, bhikkhave!" as "Bhikkhus, go do jhāna!" is apt to be tendentious and misleading, inasmuch as the noun jhāna will be likely to be construed in the narrower of the two senses when in fact it's the broader one that is more often intended.
BuddhaSoup wrote: I'm still left with questions as to why the broader sense or use of jhana is not more prevalent in modern Theravada. It seems relegated to a "specialty practice," and in the west, it's been displaced to some degree by former Thai Bhikkhus who now teach insight/vipassana without much mention of jhana, if any at all. Of course, Ven. Thanissaro and others (Ven. Gunaratana, Ven. Bodhi, Ven. Brahm) teach it as a core course, but a cursory glance of many Buddhist seminars neglect it almost completely. My local (United States) Theravada temple makes only rare mention of it, and does not incorporate it into the teachings to the laity there.
Spiny Norman wrote:I'm not sure about this second interpretation because in the suttas the absorption factors are described quite explicitly. But if this analysis is correct, which sense of jhana would you say applies to fullfilling samma samadhi?
Spiny Norman wrote:Mkoll wrote: The experience of jhana is incomparably peaceful and sublime. With the wisdom one has developed, one sees that even the most peaceful and sublime states are impermanent and conditioned. One's mind becomes "disgusted" even with jhana and one directs the mind to the deathless, Nibbana.
So wisdom is dependent on the experience of jhana?
BuddhaSoup wrote:I'm still left with questions as to why the broader sense or use of jhana is not more prevalent in modern Theravada.