[dsg] Re: Jhanas
- Hi Victor,
> Sukin, could you explain what "silabattaparamasa" means? I tried toI think others have already done this. That saves me from the risk of
> look it up but couldn't find it in the online Pali-English
> dictionary. Your explanation is appreciated.
embarrassing myself. ;-)
> I would not say that jhana is not *the* practice for reachingAfter reading Lee Dillion's post, I feel that there is some basis for your
> vipassana. In fact, I see that concentration is necessary for
> reaching insight.*
statement, though not exactly. I had always thought that the benefit of
jhana was the high level of concentration and that the hindrances were
suppressed, such that the jhanic consciousness itself was a good time to
understand the characteristic of realities. What I did not know, was that
the concentration could somehow be maintained outside the jhanic
consciousness, so that this concentration could then be used to
penetrate the subsequent realities arisen. So frankly, I am a bit
confused. In this case then Howard is right in saying that jhana is a 'tool'.
But I would still say first of all, that it is not necessary, nor that it should
be developed for this particular purpose. The context in which you speak
about concentration as a necessary factor, is not as I understand it. You
seem to imply that it is developed separately as an individual factor, but
I think that on it's own concentration practice does not have anything to
do with the development of insight. In fact I think it can go more wrong
than right, considering the necessity of panna every step of the way,
which if overlooked will lead us into the wrong direction. And in this
context, thinking that it is used as a tool is probably wrong.
I would like you to consider this Victor. What is concentration used for?
To penetrate realities? Is it to penetrate the Trilakkhana? Shouldn't one
be more concerned about understanding what appears now? Isn't the
detachment a sign of developing understanding? What does the three
characteristics mean when one does not know that dhammas are arising
now all the time and there is continual ignorance of it? My understanding
is there cannot be final penetration into the Trilakkana if there is no
development of satipatthana now. Separating nama from rupa, let alone
seeing the three characteristics means nothing to me at this point, when
I have not even experienced sound as sound, or seeing as seeing.
Also if you don't mind the length of my post, I would like to say
When I first learnt about Buddhism, I was like most people, drawn into
the argument that concentration was necessary for penetrating reality,
in the sense that it required prior practice. This made sense to me. But
later, after I discovered this group, I understood the importance of
panna. That it was *this* that needed to be developed, not the other
factors. After all the goal was *understanding*, and only panna knows
and sees, sati, samadhi, viriya, etc. simply performed their individual
functions to maintain the quality of citta, but it was panna which
*understood*. Also since there is what is known as the miccha maga,
then panna is all the more necessary every step of the way.
I realize that we both agree on the importance of panna and the
development of satipatthana, but I want to don't speculate as to why we
still don't agree on the need to practice meditation!!? :-/
Maybe some answer will come up later....
- Hi Connie,
We were discussing intermediate states after death and I promised to get
back to you. (sorry, Ive lost your post):
Kathavatthu (Points of Controversy), Bk V111,2,Of an Intermediate State,
discusses in detail why the proposition that there is an intermdiate
state of existence is not valid.
In summary from the commentary:
Some (as, for instance, the Pubbaseliyas and Sammitiyas), by a careless
acceptation of the Sutta-phrase - completed existence within the
interval - held that there is an interm stage where a being awaits
reconception for a week or longer. The counter-argument is based on the
Exalted Ones dictum that there are three states of becoming only - the
Kama-, the Rupa-, and the Arupa-worlds <SN ii,3 etc>. And it is because of
that dictum that the opponent (in so far as he is orthodox) has to deny so
many of the questions.
Also from the commentary:
.........Here the sense is this: If there be such a state as an
intermediate state of becoming, then it must be a five-mode becoming
etc., such as Kama-life, and so forth. Let us then ask you: Do you
identify the intermediate state with either the Kama-life, or Rupa-life,
or Arupa-life? All these the opponent denies, because he would not admit
The expressions either of the Kama-life and so forth have been brought
forth in order that, if there be an intermediate state, it must be between
these states of becoming, like an interval between two boundaries. The
opponent who would not admit such things, denies all these questions.
Thus he refuses the Sakavadins indeed simply for his view, but not in
accordance with the doctrine.
Hope that helps. Let me know if you need anymore;-)
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