- ... __________ Dear Frank, If one has the ability and inclination to develop anapanasati that is great. Still it is good to know that many conditions areMessage 1 of 12 , Oct 2, 2003View Source---In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Frank Kuan <fcckuan@y...> wrote:
> 2. one can study all the pali, commentaries, and
> subcommentaries until the end of time, but in the
> final analysis, the only valid proof is the
> confirmation from one's own realization experienced
> directly. To this end, we have to carefully scrutinize
> the canon to identify which parts are the most
> authoritative and significant. For example, in the
> early suttas, you would be hard pressed to find any
> references to kasinas and 40 meditation objects. What
> you do find is sutta passages that indicate that of
> the 4 foundations of mindfulness, mindfulness of body
> is the most important, and of the those, mindfulness
> of breath is given special prominence. What this tells
> me is that the serious cultivator should be spending a
> fair amount of their effort engaged in mindfulness of
> body, especially the breath. The early pali suttas
> also say that if we carefully cultivate mindfulness of
> breath, that it would naturally bring all 4
> foundations of mindfulness to fruition, would lead to
> samatha, vipassana, single pointedness of mind and
> induce jhanic absorption. What a wonderful tool! All
> the study of the canon does not equal one minute of
> peace, joy, tranquillity and insight that is easily
> availabe to us from cultivating the breath. This can
> be verified with one's own experience without even
> obtaining jhanic absorption.
If one has the ability and inclination to develop anapanasati that is
great. Still it is good to know that many conditions are needed to
suceed in this: Some meditation subjects need a crosslegged posture,
erect back, a very quiet place, solitude...
This is all well explained in the visuddhimagga. In particular this
applies to anapanasati - breath.
Also we should know that anapanasati is singled out as being the
most difficult of all the 40 objects.Here is a passage from the
211: "Although any meditation subject, no matter what, is
only in one who is mindful and fully aware, yet any meditation
subject other than this one gets more evident as he goes on
his attention. But this mindfulness of breathing is difficult,
difficult to develop, a field in which only the minds of
paccekabuddhas and Buddhas sons are at home. It is no trivial
nor can it be cultivated by trivial persons.." (we discussed this on
pali list last year)
We might be concentrating on the breath with subtle lobha
(attachment) not realising that true samatha comes with alobha,
In many suttas the Buddha was speaking to monks who had vast
accumulations of panna and other parami. It is not, I believe, that
the Buddha said that all should take up anapanasati.
There are other types of samatha - such as Maranasati (meditation
on death)- that are suitable for all times.
For example the Anguttara nikaya (Book of the Elevens ii 13 p213
Mahanama) says about Buddhanusati and Dhammanusati and several other
"` you should develop it as you sit, as you stand, as
you lie, as you apply yourself to business. You should
make it grow as you dwell at home in your lodging
crowded with children"
In the Samyutta nikaya V (Sayings on stream entry p347
The great chapter Dhammadina ) 5oo rich merchants
came to see the Buddha . They asked how they should
live their lives. The Buddha suggested that they train
"as to those discourses uttered by the Tathagatha,
deep, deep in meaning, transcendental and concerned
with the void (about anatta) from time to time we will
spend our days learning them. That is how you must
spend your days."
In the satipatthana sutta the Buddha explains the four foundations of
mindfulness. These can be cultivated in any position at any time.
Frank: Talk about accumulations, or lack
> thereof, is also baffling to me. Certainly some would____
> find seclusion and tranquillity easier to cultivate
> than others, but if you don't accumulate now, when are
> you going to accumulate? After you're dead?
It is relevant because this is a Buddha sasana - a very rare event.
If one develops samatha bhavana that is wonderful.
Indeed all of us have developed samatha and we must have succeeded in
gaining jhana in countless lives. This is because of the vast time of
However only very rarely has there been insight into anatta, into
the lakkhana (characteristic) of elements. That is why some of us
believe that we should give stress to this aspect of the Dhamma. The
Buddha sasana will soon be extinguished and it will be a long time
before another samma-sammbuddha arises.
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> The New Yahoo! Shopping - with improved product search
- Dear Robert and friends, Robert Kirkpatrick wrote:Message 2 of 12 , Oct 3, 2003View SourceDear Robert and friends,
Robert Kirkpatrick wrote:
<Thus we see that the way of using mundane jhana as a
basis has this
advantage too. However not all beings have the
master the jhanas (I mean genuine jhana, not
imitation). To use the
jhanas as basis one must be proficient in them -not
them a few times- >
Nina: In the Mahaanidaanasutta (transl Bhikkhu Bodhi) and the Co. there are
texts about liberated both ways and liberated by insight. At the end of the
sutta we read what the requirements are for being liberated both ways. It
shows how difficult it is:<When a bhikkhu attains these eight emancipations
in forward order, in reverse order, and in both forward and reverse order;
when he attains them and emerges from them wherever he wants, in whatever
way he wants, and for as long as he wants, and when, through the destruction
of the cankers, he here and now enters and dwells in the cankerless
liberation of mind, liberation by wisdom, having realized it for himself
with direct knowledge, then he is called a bhikkhu who is liberated both
ways. And, Ananda, there is no other liberation in both ways higher or more
sublime than this one."
The Visuddhimagga describes these as masteries, vasis.
The co. about the passage <Ananda, when a bhikkhu...is liberated through
non-clinging, then he is called a bhikkhu liberated by wisdom.>
Follows an explanation we discussed before: fivefold: dry insight and those
who attain arahatship after having become established in one of the four
The subco: liberated by wisdom. <He is liberated solely by the power of
wisdom because he does not achieve the eight emancipations and thus lacks
the power of eminent concentration. Or else, "liberated by wisdom" means
liberated while understanding; that is, knowing and penetrating the four
truths in the mode of full understanding, etc. wihtout contact with the
first jhana, he is "liberated" or distinctively freed by completeing the
functions (of penetration) by bringing those functions to their climax.
"Dry insight meditator": one whose insight is dry, rough, and unmoistened,
lacking the moisture of serenity meditation.
"Does not dwell suffusing the eight emancipations":this indicates the
absence of the power of eminent concentration. "Having seen with wisdom":
this indicates possession of the power of eminent wisdom">
The meaning of dry insight is interesting. I think of the text that someone
with dry insight becomes tired, kilamati, while the jhanalaabhi does not
tire. If someone truly has the skill for jhana it is an advantage, but we
should not underestimate the vasis, masteries. Now we are further away from
the Buddha's time. There are texts in the commentaries that arahats with the
four patiusambhidas will disappear (in this world), and also jhanalabhi
arahats. All arahats will disappear, and subsequently ariyans of the third,
second and first stage of enlightenment will disappear, the teachings will
As Robert reminds us: < The Buddha sasana will soon be extinguished and it
will be a long time
before another samma-sammbuddha arises.>
- Our Frank proclaimed: When the moment of death arives, what am I going to need more, expertise in Pali, or razor sharp one pointed concentration? When thatMessage 3 of 12 , Oct 6, 2003View SourceOur Frank proclaimed:
"When the moment of death arives, what am I
going to need more, expertise in Pali, or razor sharp
one pointed concentration? When that moment comes, I
intend to tell Mara to kiss my ass while I witness the
arising and cessation of 5 aggregates for the final
But nonetheless I've just ordered Warder - maybe if I have enough Pali books
in my house I can learn the language by osmosis?
Actually the little Pali that I have managed to learn has mostly come via
the regular postings to this list of the da Silva and Warder exercises. The
kindness of the posters - in fact of all the regular contributers here - is
Use MSN Messenger to send music and pics to your friends
- ... Dear Hope, That is also my main method for pali study. Like you I also pick up bits by reading the other posts. welcome to the group robertMessage 4 of 12 , Oct 6, 2003View Source--- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, "Hope Raven" <hope_raven@h...> wrote:
> I've just ordered Warder - maybe if I have enough Pali booksDear Hope,
> in my house I can learn the language by osmosis?
That is also my main method for pali study.
Like you I also pick up bits by reading the other posts.
welcome to the group
- Dear Hope, ... N: You may be very busy but, it pays to look up the relevant Warder Ch that Jon mentions each time he gives us an exercise. At first I alsoMessage 5 of 12 , Oct 7, 2003View SourceDear Hope,
op 07-10-2003 03:23 schreef rjkjp1 op rjkjp1@...:
> --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, "Hope Raven" <hope_raven@h...> wrote:N: You may be very busy but, it pays to look up the relevant Warder Ch that
>> I've just ordered Warder - maybe if I have enough Pali books
>> in my house I can learn the language by osmosis?
Jon mentions each time he gives us an exercise.
At first I also thought that I would not need so much grammar, but I found
out that even the difference between instrumentalis or ablative can, if we
are not precise, twist the meaning. We have to be very precises with the
cases. I found out while studying the text of the Buddha's last meal in the
Dhamma Study Group. There are many pittfalls. In the course of learning
interest will grow. I welcome any discussions on grammar on this list. I
learn by discussions.
- Hi Frank, Robert, Nina, Dimitry and others, Fogive me for butting in so late but I see the thread is still running on the jhanas. I tend to agree largely withMessage 6 of 12 , Oct 14, 2003View SourceHi Frank, Robert, Nina, Dimitry and others,
Fogive me for butting in so late but I see the thread is still
running on the jhanas. I tend to agree largely with Franks'
position. The question of whether to jhana or not, and dry vipassana
has been hotly debated for many years by meditators and will continue
for more. Sometimes all the arguements simply remind me of the
Buddha's simile of the blind men trying to describe an elephant.
Meditation is to be experienced and not to be argued about. If one
wants to follow the jhana way, one should find a teacher who has
achieved it and is skilled in it and learn from such a teacher. Same
for a vipassana meditation. Such an advice was given by the Buddha
in either AN or SN where he said that a monk skilled in samatha
should also visit another skilled in insight and learn from him and
About whether it is important to have jhana or not, I personally
think samatha meditation culminating in jhana is an experience no
meditator whould forego, no matter how long it takes to achieve.
This is obvious from the suttas and the way in which jhanas are
described not only by the Buddha but also by Sariputta and other
In an earlier post Robert said that the Visuddhimagga categorized
breath meditation as the most difficult of the 40 odd techniques
taught by the Buddha. Difficult, yes. But so are all meditation
techniques for different people. Meditation can never be easy
because it needs striving, consistency, reflection and
experimentation. The Buddha taught anapanasati as one of central
meditation topics, one that he used himself on the night of his
enlightenment. He wouldn't have taught it if it was impossible for
people to practice.
Then about accumulation of good kamma, and how times have
deteriorated in these declining years of the Sasana - that's all
Commentary staff. The suttas never say any such thing. What the
Buddha said was that as long as we follow the Noble Eightfold Path
persistently and correctly, we should get there some time. The
Buddha knew hemun beings' minds. He taught us to understand our own
minds and how to work with it. Have the minds of human beings
changed since 2500 years ago? I think not. That's why the Dhamma is
I am not a follower of the Commentaries. I have not tried to start
reading the Vidsuddhimagga, because I find the suttas complete and
adequate. While there may be odd statements here and there that are
not satisfactorily understood, the central theme of Dhamma and
practice stands firm and clear and provides enough of a guide to
use. Commentaries are good if they help increase understanding and
practice but I have not found any urge from what I read about other's
postings and explanations of the Commentaries. From such postings,
for example, of Nina's painstaking time and effort in this group, I
see three aspects (a)when the commentaries expand on individual words
e.g. he walked up meaning he waited for the Buddha toi leqve and then
walked up ... I find no additional value in understanding the Dhamma
from such commentaries. (b)when the commentaries explains some simile
and then adds one more of their own e.g. like a lion king, like this
and that, getting more and more extravagant with each example, I can
only imagine that the audience to which the commentaries were
addressed must have been very simple village folk who need the
devotional ardour to be stoked to flaming level. Such commentariesd
do not add to the value I already place on the suttas. (c)when the
commentaries comment on meditation methods and ways of practice, I
find this is often confusing and unnecessary. Because meditation is
something to experience not to intellectualize about. I find many of
the arguements on this thread tend to follow rational lines, meaning
each person is appealing to some understanding from our intellectual
mind. Yet meditation experience, especially jhanas do not fit such
restrictions. The Buddha said that the power and range of jhanas is
one of the four imponderables. Ajahn Brahm teaches that in jhana one
never experience what one expects. Maybe that's why jhana experience
and the reflection after emerging from then are so powerful to cut
off the deep underlying tendencies of greed hatred and delusion.
Wth metta to all,
--- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, "rjkjp1" <rjkjp1@y...> wrote:
> --- In Pali@yahoogroups.com, Frank Kuan <fcckuan@y...> wrote:
> > The buddha goes so far as to say the disciple who
> > neglects jhana practice is "not one who dwells in the
> > dhamma"
> > http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/anguttara/an05-073.html
> > "Then there is the case where a monk takes the Dhamma
> > as he has heard & studied it and thinks about it,
> > evaluates it, and examines it with his intellect. He
> > spends the day in Dhamma-thinking. He neglects
> > seclusion. He doesn't commit himself to internal
> > tranquility of awareness. This is called a monk who is
> > keen on thinking, not one who dwells in the Dhamma.
> > Then there is the case where a monk studies the
> > Dhamma... [HOWEVER!] He doesn't spend the day in
> > Dhamma-study. He doesn't neglect seclusion. He commits
> > himself to internal tranquility of awareness. This is
> > called a monk who dwells in the Dhamma.
> > "Now, monk, I have taught you the person who is keen
> > on study, the one who is keen on description, the one
> > who is keen on recitation, the one who is keen on
> > thinking, and the one who dwells in the Dhamma.
> > Whatever a teacher should do -- seeking the welfare of
> > his disciples, out of sympathy for them -- that have I
> > done for you. Over there are the roots of trees; over
> > there, empty dwellings. Practice jhana, monk. Don't be
> > heedless. Don't later fall into regret. This is our
> > message to you."
> >In fact, to this
> >day, I'm still only on lesson 2 of the Gair book, and
> >chapter 4 of the de Silva book, despite my earnest
> >desire to learn more Pali. Why? Because of priorities.
> Dear Frank,
> Certainly only studying Dhamma is of limited value. Still, one of
> advantages of such study, including Pali studies, is that we learn
> about the deeper meaning of phrases such as the one you quote
> above.The Pali (supplied by Jim Anderson) of an almost identical
> "Jhaayatha, Cunda, maa pamaadattha maa pacchaa vippa.tisaarino
> ahuvattha ..." -- M i 46 (near the end of MN 8). Also found at M i
> 118 (MN
> 19) with 'bhikkhave' instead of Cunda.
> Here, the commentary interprets "Meditate" as "Increase samatha and
> "Samatha~nca vipassana~nca va.d.dhethaa ti vutta.m hoti." --MA ii
> (there's a bit more just before this)
> >> I know about this translation of 'jhaayatha'. I find
> >> that it does not
> >> quite agree with the commentary which includes both
> >> samatha and
> >> vipassanaa. That's why I think 'Meditate' is a
> >> better translation than
> >> 'Practice jhana'.
> "Jhaayatha' is a verb in the 2nd person plural with the -tha
> In the
> PED, the verbs are entered in their 3rd pers. sing. forms with the -
> ending. So you will have to look for 'jhaayati' for which you will
> find two
> entries. The first one has the following senses: to meditate,
> think upon, brood over (c. acc.): . . . -- and for the second: to
> burn, to
> be on fire: . . . They are derived from two distinct roots. In the
> commentarial passage from which I quoted "Increase samatha and
> in explaining 'jhaayatha' there is also the following comment that
> helps to
> clarify the difference between samatha and vipassana: "Meditate
> (upanijjhaayatha) on the 38 objects (aaramma.na) with the meditation
> (upanijjhaana) on an object and on aggregates, bases, etc.
> anicca, etc. with the meditation on a characteristic (lakkha.na)." -
> MA i
> 195." end of section by Jim Anderson.
> When the texts talk about meditation, jhaya, it is useful to
> know that there are two types.
> I quoted this to Dimitry earlier: The Dhammapada 371 :"Meditate, o
> bhikkhu and be not heedless." (same
> pali phrase as the sutta you quoted above.
> The atthakatha says "o bhikkhus meditate by the two kinds of
> meditative absorptions"
> And the tika notes that this is twofold in "the sense of
> meditative absorption that arises depending on an object and
> meditative absorption that arises dependent on characteristics"
> The tika later explains this by saying that the first is (p506
> note 6 of carter and palihawadana) "the eight attainments
> (jhanas) to be obtained by training the mind in concentrating on
> one of the thirty eight objects such as kasina [or metta, or
> Buddha or Dhamma or breath etc] and the second means 'insight
> wisdom, path and fruit'..to be obtained by reflecting on the
> three characteristics'"endquote
> Now when it says 'reflecting' this means direct insight into the
> characteristics and conditions of the present moment right up to
> the vipassana nanas and magga and phala, it is far more than only
> thinking about Dhamma.
> THe Dhammapada pradipaya (see p457 of carter and palihawadana) says
> "to consider the coming into being of rupa on account of
> ignorance, craving, kamma and nutrition, and also to see the
> mere characteristics of its instantaneous coming into being,
> without looking for causative aspect; thus one should consider
> the rise of rupa in five ways. Likewise to consider the rise of
> the other 4 khandas in the same way...Thus the rise of the
> pancakkhanda (five aggregates )is seen in 25 ways. To see that
> the rise of the khandas is stopped by abolishing the
> causes:ignorance, craving, kamma and nutrition..in this way the
> cessation of the agregates should be seen" end quote
> As Teng kee pointed out the path out of samsara depends on lakkhana
> jhana - insight into the three characteristics of anicca, dukkha
> anatta. The jhana labhi after he leaves mundane jhana must also
> develop this type of special samadhi. The sukkha-vipassaka develops
> this profound samadhi without having attained mundane jhana.
> Which is the superior path? Certainly the texts are clear that the
> one who develops both samatha and jhana is the highest. However I
> think we should not despise also the lesser path of the sukkha-
> vipassaka as this too eventually results in the end of rebirth.
- Dear Khaik-Cheang Oo, ... ____ I appreciate you continuing the discussion, please add more.I just add something on this point for now: ... _____ From the suttaMessage 7 of 12 , Oct 14, 2003View SourceDear Khaik-Cheang Oo,
In Pali@yahoogroups.com, "cheangoo" <cheangoo@h...> wrote:
> Hi Frank, Robert, Nina, Dimitry and others,____
> Fogive me for butting in so late but I see the thread is still
> running on the jhanas.
I appreciate you continuing the discussion, please add more.I just
add something on this point for now:
> Then about accumulation of good kamma, and how times have
> deteriorated in these declining years of the Sasana - that's all
> Commentary stuff. The suttas never say any such thing.
From the sutta Pitaka
Samyutta Nikaya IX (20)7
p708 of Bhikkhu Bodhi's translation
"Monks, there once was a time when the
had a large drum called 'Summoner.' Whenever Summoner was split,
Dasarahas inserted another peg in it, until the time came when
Summoner's original wooden body had disappeared and only a
conglomeration of pegs remained.
"In the same way, in the course of the future there will be
won't listen when discourses that are words of the Tathagata --
deep in their meaning, transcendent, connected with emptiness --
being recited. They won't lend ear, won't set their hearts on
them, won't regard these teachings as worth grasping or
But they will listen when discourses that are literary works --
works of poets, elegant in sound, elegant in rhetoric, the work
outsiders, words of disciples -- are recited. They will lend ear
set their hearts on knowing them. They will regard these
worth grasping & mastering.
"In this way the disappearance of the discourses that are words
the Tathagata -- deep, deep in their meaning, transcendent,
with emptiness -- will come about.
"Thus you should train yourselves: 'We will listen when
that are words of the Tathagata -- deep, deep in their meaning,
transcendent, connected with emptiness -- are being recited. We
lend ear, will set our hearts on knowing them, will regard these
teachings as worth grasping & mastering.' That's how you should
>Anyway I add something from the commentary to the above sutta:
> I am not a follower of the Commentaries. I have not tried to start
> reading the Vidsuddhimagga, because I find the suttas complete and
> adequate. >
The commentary notes that this means deep teachings such as
those dealing with emptiness(sunnatapatisamyutta), explaining
mere phenomena devoid of a being (sattasunnata-dhammamattam eva
[like the whole of the Abhidhamma? -robert]