Meditation to gain enlightenment?

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.

Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby lppaefans » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:35 am

All,

Hi.

i have a a question. :smile: :smile:

will mainly conducting mediation alone can leads one to enlightment?

care to share you views about this??

I have two groups of buddhist friends. One say no and one say yes.

hope to gain more replies here..

may all be happy always. :buddha1: :buddha1: :buddha1:
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby Jechbi » Fri Jan 30, 2009 5:59 am

No, I don't think so. You gotta have eight spokes to support the wheel.
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby lppaefans » Fri Jan 30, 2009 6:16 am

Jechbi wrote:No, I don't think so. You gotta have eight spokes to support the wheel.
:smile:



thanks for sharing..the 8 spokes are?
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby jcsuperstar » Fri Jan 30, 2009 6:35 am

8 fold path
meditation is only two of those

but yeah, i was always curious as to just how one becomes enlightened by sitting down and shutting up... (i know i'm over simplifing)
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the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 30, 2009 8:39 am

I agree you need the FULL Eightfold Path.

a pretty good article is on Wiki.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
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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: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby fig tree » Fri Jan 30, 2009 8:45 am

jcsuperstar wrote:8 fold path
meditation is only two of those

but yeah, i was always curious as to just how one becomes enlightened by sitting down and shutting up... (i know i'm over simplifing)

Consider the sutta here: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an11/an11.002.than.html. It lays out a chain of cause-and-effect. The bit about knowing and seeing things as they are is rather important.

Knowing about the five hindrances also might make the relationship between meditation and seeing things as they are less puzzling. The hindrances get in the way of knowing and seeing things as they are, and the desirable meditative states are ones where the hindrances are suppressed. That's still only a temporary freedom, but it paves the way for permanent eradication of your bondage.

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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby siaophengyou » Fri Jan 30, 2009 9:12 am

Dear lppaefans,

What about the Perfections or Paramis ? One may not realize the Real Happiness without enough Parami.

metta,

siaophengyou
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby kc2dpt » Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:24 pm

lppaefans wrote:will mainly conducting mediation alone can leads one to enlightment?

care to share you views about this??

I have two groups of buddhist friends. One say no and one say yes.

I suspect that your friends who say "yes" think about it this way:

Meditation leads to insight. Insight leads to wanting to modifying the rest of one's life to be more in line with the rest of the Noble Eightfold Path. As the rest of one's life gets in order, meditation deepens which means insight deepens, which means one's conduct is modified even more. Some people think "I am not comfortable doing something just because the Buddha said so." This view is why some people say "yes" to your question.

I suspect those that say "no" think about it this way:

One can meditate all they want but in the rest of their life isn't in line with the Noble Eightfold Path then enlightenment will be impossible. Some people think "I can still lie and steal and kill and as long as I meditate I can get enlightened." This wrong view is why some people say "no" to your question.
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:30 pm

I am not one way or the other on this topic but i have heard of a meditation master who claimed that "The breath can take you all the way to enlightenment." Im not sure who it was all i know is that i read it in Gil Fronsdals book The Issue at Hand. Maybe he was just saying that one meditation "technique" is enough. Who knows? I just thought it was a cool quote. :lol:

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby genkaku » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:56 pm

I was thinking about this today, though from a slightly different angle. Please delete if it's too far off-topic:

Some -- perhaps a lot of -- people walk around imagining quietly, "I am not enlightened." And from there, it's a short step to wishing to be enlightened.

But the thought that crossed my mind was this: In order to know you are not enlightened, you would, of necessity, need to know what enlightenment was. And if you actually did know what enlightenment was, would it honestly be enlightenment?
Books and descriptions and angels on the head of a pin cannot adequately capture the meaning of enlightenment so ... how could anyone truthfully say they were unenlightened?

Brain teasers like this encourage me ... don't fret; just practice. :)
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:01 pm

genkaku wrote:I was thinking about this today, though from a slightly different angle. Please delete if it's too far off-topic:

Some -- perhaps a lot of -- people walk around imagining quietly, "I am not enlightened." And from there, it's a short step to wishing to be enlightened.

But the thought that crossed my mind was this: In order to know you are not enlightened, you would, of necessity, need to know what enlightenment was. And if you actually did know what enlightenment was, would it honestly be enlightenment?
Books and descriptions and angels on the head of a pin cannot adequately capture the meaning of enlightenment so ... how could anyone truthfully say they were unenlightened?

Brain teasers like this encourage me ... don't fret; just practice. :)


The Buddha's description of Nibbana or Enlightenment:

"This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications, the relinquishment of all acquisitions, the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Nibbana."

— AN 3.32

I still have way too much attachment and suffering in my life to be Enlightened.

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby Jechbi » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:04 pm

A few thoughts:
fig tree wrote:... the desirable meditative states are ones where the hindrances are suppressed. That's still only a temporary freedom, but it paves the way for permanent eradication of your bondage.

I'd amend this to say that some desireable meditate states might be thought to suppress hindrances. Other desireable states face the hindrances directly.

bodom_bad_boy wrote:... i have heard of a meditation master who claimed that "The breath can take you all the way to enlightenment."
That's probably meant as an encouragement to keep on meditating, not as an encouragement to meditate at the exclusion of the rest of practice. You might not know the moment enlightenment comes. It doesn't always come in meditation, as the suttas illustrate. But lots of factors preceed it, so if it happens during meditation, there's some other stuff that happened earlier in life to help set the stage, like good sila for instance.

genkaku wrote:In order to know you are not enlightened, you would, of necessity, need to know what enlightenment was.
Does a blind man know what darkness is? How can a blind man know he's blind?

genkaku wrote:And if you actually did know what enlightenment was, would it honestly be enlightenment?
Why wouldn't it be?

:smile:
Rain soddens what is kept wrapped up,
But never soddens what is open;
Uncover, then, what is concealed,
Lest it be soddened by the rain.
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:12 pm

Its a tough one to answer and i dont think there is a universal answer as it does come down to the individual. Certainely meditation is important but I wouldnt say its all there is. Sutta study is very helpful in increasing understanding of your practice.
“Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.” Ovid
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:14 pm

Did the Buddhas original disciples study scripture? No, they just practiced and they reached the deathless. Find a good teacher.

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:16 pm

The scriptures are the message of the buddha, his disciples did study his word and reflect on it.

If one cannot get to a teacher then the suttas are extremely helpful to the practise.

:namaste:
“Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.” Ovid
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:23 pm

clw_uk wrote:The scriptures are the message of the buddha, his disciples did study his word and reflect on it.

If one cannot get to a teacher then the suttas are extremely helpful to the practise.

:namaste:


They studied his word by putting into practice his word. Scriptural study is outward study. Practice is inward study.

"Do you know where it will end? Or will you just keep on studying like this? ...Or is there an end to it? ... That's okay but it's the external study, not the internal study. For the internal study you have to study these eyes, these ears, this nose, this tongue, this body and this mind. This is the real study. The study of books is just the external study, it's really hard to get it finished."

Ajahn Chah

See this thread: Practise vs suttra
viewtopic.php?f=13&t=503&view=unread#unread

Im not denying the importance of studying the Buddhas words. It is important but only if you use it as a guide and not take it to be the truth itself. I know this is cliche' but Its the finger not the moon.

:namaste:
Last edited by bodom on Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby Jechbi » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:31 pm

bodom_bad_boy wrote:Did the Buddhas original disciples study scripture? No, they just practiced and they reached the deathless. Find a good teacher.
The very first five just heard a few words from the Buddha, and bingo, enlightenment.
:buddha1:
Rain soddens what is kept wrapped up,
But never soddens what is open;
Uncover, then, what is concealed,
Lest it be soddened by the rain.
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:32 pm

Jechbi wrote:
bodom_bad_boy wrote:Did the Buddhas original disciples study scripture? No, they just practiced and they reached the deathless. Find a good teacher.
The very first five just heard a few words from the Buddha, and bingo, enlightenment.
:buddha1:


:clap: Good point!

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby clw_uk » Fri Jan 30, 2009 5:06 pm

Some did attain nibbana with ease but the majority needed instruction and help along the way. I dont believe in just reading the suttas over and over i do believe in practice and wisdom comming from within, the right balance needs to be found between both.
“Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.” Ovid
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Re: Meditation to gain enlightenment?

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 30, 2009 5:09 pm

clw_uk wrote:Some did attain nibbana with ease but the majority needed instruction and help along the way. I dont believe in just reading the suttas over and over i do believe in practice and wisdom comming from within, the right balance needs to be found between both.


The Middle Way. :bow: :bow: :bow:

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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