The 2 Kinds of Jhanas -- Re: [Pali] All of that is considered Jhana ?
- Frank K wrote thus at 03:07 AM 12-01-13:
>Dear Ven. KB,You're not the first to notice this. I have this is my book:
>With the Pali sutta description of jhÄna, 16
>steps of ÄnÄpÄna, etc., being
>so terse, it's hard to know exactly what the Buddha's instructions on jhÄna
>actually entails. So it may be that what constitutes jhÄna is broader than
>we may think. But even using an attitude of keeping the definition broad
>and open, it still seems that the Vism. is describing a different practice
>for development of jhÄna than the terse Pali sutta passages.
Among those who have written on this matter, the
earliest I have found is Ayodhya Prasad Pradhan1
who wrote the following in his book The Buddhas
System of Meditation (Sterling Publishers) published in 1986!
In the Buddhist Canon itself the process of attaining it
(jhana) is not given in a practical way, in spite of the
frequent repetitions of the formula-like description of
this Jhana throughout the Canon. The tradition
preserved in commentaries, especially in Buddhaghosas
work entitled the Visuddhi-magga, or the Path of
Purification, in Pali, seems to have developed a system
of its own . After comparing the latter with the former,
anyone who intends to devote or has already devoted, his
time and energy in practising the meditation of early
Buddhism and in unravelling its secrets, will not fail, I
believe, to detect the contrast.
1Ayodhya Prasad Pradhan (b. 1904) is a well known
Nepalese Buddhist scholar of Pali language,
scripture, philosophy and literature . A
practitioner of Hatha Yoga in his younger days
and later Laya Yoga, he came to discover the
superiority of the Buddhas system of meditation
over the other known systems and practised it. (From the book jacket)
>AnotherAgreed. A notable person is Dipa Ma. She however
>example of the Buddha's terse instructions being frustratingly lacking in
>detail is the development of knowledge and vision, especially the 3 higher
>knowledges. In one of the suttas on iddhipada, the Buddha said a couple
>lines on developing the perception of light, in all directions, so night is
>like day, day is like night. And the next line he is talking about the
>supernormal powers already, with no details on how one gets there. Whatever
>problems people have with Vism., you have to give them credit for the fact
>that using the detailed instructions in the Vism. on JhÄna and supernormal
>power, there are practitioners today who were able to do it.
developed them only after she became accomplished
in the more important area, and gave them up
after some time. Many people these days though
get carried away by this detour. Who, without
sufficient spiritual maturity, wouldn't?
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