Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

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Sanjay PS
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Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Sanjay PS » Thu Dec 19, 2013 11:27 am

Having known as they really are , the arising , and passing away of sensations , the enjoyment of them , the danger in them and the release from them , the Enlightened One , O monks , is fully liberated and freed from all attachment .

Digha Nikaya I.36, Brahmajala Sutta


Pleasant body sensation is related to pleasant sensation of the body , unpleasant sensation of the body , and attainment of fruition (nibbana) by strong dependence condition .

Unpleasant body sensations is related to pleasant sensations of the body , unpleasant sensations of the body , and attainment of fruition by strong dependence condition .

The season (or surrounding environment ) is related to pleasant sensation of the body , unpleasant sensation of the body , and attainment of fruition by strong dependence condition .

Food is related to pleasant body sensations of the body , unpleasant sensations of the body , , and attainment of fruition by strong dependence condition .

Lying down and sitting ( i.e, the mattress and cushions , or the positions of lying , sitting , etc.) is related to pleasant sensations of the body , unpleasant sensation of the body, and attainment of fruition by strong dependence condition .


The above is highlighted in the Patthana, the seventh text of Abhidhamma Pitaka under the Pakatupanissaya


Once , the Great Dhamma Saint , Sayagi U Ba Khin , asked the would be Great Dhamma Saint , Shree SN Goenka , to go watch along with family an ice skating show which featured semi- dressed women , perturbed , Goenkaji went , and on his return , Sayagi U Ba Khin , quizzed as to what sensations that Goenkaji felt while in such a setting , Goenkaji replied , it was a very heavy nauseous feeling that racked him through out . Pleased Sayagi U Ba Khin , then asked Goenkaji to go and pay respects to Lord Buddhas statue, placed in a particular enclosure of the Shwedagon Pagoda. Goenakji went , and on his return was again quizzed by Sayagi U Ba Khin , on the sensations that Goenkaji felt , Goenkaji was very reluctant to answer this time around , since he knew , Sayagi U Ba Khin was a born buddhist , and the reply would not please him . On Sayagi U Ba Khins insistence and persuasion , Goenkaji with great sadness , mentioned the sensations felt were heavy and weighed . Sayagi U Ba Khin , immediately said , Sadhu ,Sadhu , Sadhu ( well said, well said , well said ) , and then declared that Goenkaji had indeed become ripe in giving and teaching others the jewel of Dhamma , since he was now able to feel both internal as well as external sensations . Sayagi U Ba Khin then revealed to Goenkaji , that the particular enclosure of the Shwedagon Pagoda was the place where numerous people came from all walks of life and made wishes for various kind of aspirations for their day to day living , hence , the surrounding was permeated with the sensations of craving .
The Path of Dhamma

The path of Dhamma is no picnic . It is a strenuous march steeply up the hill . If all the comrades desert you , Walk alone ! Walk alone ! with all the Thrill !!

U S.N. Goenka

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Babadhari » Tue Feb 04, 2014 2:37 pm

vedana should not be translated as just 'sensation, . an alternative meaning of 'vedana' is also 'feeling' , either bodily feeling or mental feeling,

i do not know any Pali so my undertanding of 'vedana' in the Suttas is related to whichever version amongst different translations I am reading
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Spiny Norman » Tue Feb 04, 2014 2:43 pm

kitztack wrote: an alternative meaning of 'vedana' is also 'feeling' , either bodily feeling or mental feeling,


That's how I understand it from the suttas. The basic division is physical / mental, then it can be pleasant, unpleasant or neutral.
"I ride tandem with the random, Things don't run the way I planned them, In the humdrum."
Peter Gabriel lyric

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Babadhari » Tue Feb 04, 2014 3:00 pm

also feeling is not to be confused with 'emotion' which adds other thought processes

the Place of 'Vedana' in Buddhist Psychology
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Spiny Norman » Wed Feb 05, 2014 9:33 am

kitztack wrote:also feeling is not to be confused with 'emotion' which adds other thought processes

the Place of 'Vedana' in Buddhist Psychology


So mental vedana is feeling without thought? Or pre-thought?
"I ride tandem with the random, Things don't run the way I planned them, In the humdrum."
Peter Gabriel lyric

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Babadhari » Wed Feb 05, 2014 2:23 pm

good question Spiny Norman. i'm far from being an expert but as far as i can understand pleasant or unpleasant feeling gives rise to emotion which in turn gives rise to thought.

and thought being a form of contact creates more mental feeling/sensation/vedana which lead to emotion

i could be totally wrong on this subject so if anyone more experienced on the process can advise it would be appreciated
:namaste:
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Spiny Norman » Wed Feb 05, 2014 3:39 pm

kitztack wrote:... and thought being a form of contact creates more mental feeling/sensation/vedana which lead to emotion


That's the bit I find interesting here, that thought can give rise to emotion. So one can "generate" a pleasant feeling by deliberately thinking certain thoughts, or by thinking about something / somebody that one likes.
Some versions of metta bhavana practice use this approach, where one repeats a phrase like "may I well, may I be happy".
"I ride tandem with the random, Things don't run the way I planned them, In the humdrum."
Peter Gabriel lyric

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Mkoll » Wed Feb 05, 2014 4:29 pm

From MN 59, entitled by one "The Many Kinds of Feeling":
[The Blessed One said:] "Ananda, true was the exposition that Pañcakanga the carpenter would not accept from Ven. Udayin. And true was the exposition that Ven. Udayin would not accept from Pañcakanga the carpenter. There is the exposition by which I have spoken of two feelings, the exposition by which I have spoken of three feelings ... five feelings ... six feelings ... eighteen feelings ... 36 feelings ... 108 feelings.[1] Thus I have taught the Dhamma by means of exposition. When I have taught the Dhamma by means of exposition, it can be expected that when there are those who do not consent to, assent to, or accept what is well-said and well-stated by one another, there will be arguing, quarreling, & disputing, and they will dwell wounding one another with the sword of the tongue. Thus I have taught the Dhamma by means of exposition. When I have taught the Dhamma by means of exposition, it can be expected that when there are those who do consent to, assent to, & accept what is well-said and well-stated by one another, they will live in harmony, with courtesy, without quarreling, like milk mixed with water, regarding one another with friendly eyes.


2 feelings: pleasure and pain
3 feelings: pleasure, pain, and neither-pleasure-nor-pain
5 feelings: bodily pain, bodily pleasure, mental grief, mental pleasure, equanimity
6 feelings: feelings based on the 6 sense bases
18 feelings: pleasant, painful, and neutral feelings based on the 6 sense bases
36 feelings: the 18 feelings based on the household life or the renunciate life
108 feelings: the 36 feelings based on past, present, and future

That's from memory based on Ven. Bodhi's note in his translation of the MN. I think it's correct but don't quote me!

:anjali:
Peace,
James

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Babadhari » Wed Feb 05, 2014 5:33 pm

well done mkoll

i read it also just yesterday but have no idea where!! :thumbsup:

2 feelings: pleasure and pain - (bodily sensation)
3 feelings: pleasure, pain, and neither-pleasure-nor-pain (mental feeling)
Last edited by Babadhari on Thu Feb 06, 2014 11:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Babadhari » Wed Feb 05, 2014 6:31 pm

6 feelings: feelings based on the 6 sense bases

feeling born of eye-contact is inconstant, changeable, alterable.
Feeling born of ear-contact is inconstant, changeable, alterable.
Feeling born of nose-contact is inconstant, changeable, alterable.
Feeling born of tongue-contact is inconstant, changeable, alterable..
Feeling born of body-contact is inconstant, changeable, alterable..
Feeling born of intellect-contact is inconstant, changeable, alterable.

SN 25.5 Vedana Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby SarathW » Wed Feb 05, 2014 11:49 pm

[quote="kitztack"



2 feelings: pleasure and pain - (mental feeling)
3 feelings: pleasure, pain, and neither-pleasure-nor-pain (bodily sensation)[/quote]

See a different interpretation:

Somanassa, domanassa, and upekkhà are purely
mental. Sukha and dukkha are purely physical. This is the
reason why there is no upekkhà in the case of touch
which, according to Abhidhamma, must be either happy
or painful.

Page 33
http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/abhidhamma.pdf
:reading:

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Re: Importance of vedana/sensations in the Buddhas Teachings

Postby Babadhari » Thu Feb 06, 2014 11:34 am

thanks SarathW

ive edited that mistake, well spotted and my thanks for giving me the correct definition :namaste:
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28


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