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Re: conditions for Satipatthana

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  • dhd5@cornell.edu
    ... Formal practice, if done correctly, can be enormously helpful. In my reading of the Suttas, it is essential for liberation. After all, I don t think Buddha
    Message 1 of 94 , Feb 2, 2001
      > However,
      > > as we
      > > have seen, there seems to be a wide disagreement on
      > > this as
      > > well. Some believe that the only way that
      > > satipatthana can
      > > arise and can be developed are through "formal"
      > > practice.
      Formal practice, if done correctly, can be enormously helpful. In my
      reading of the Suttas, it is essential for liberation. After all, I
      don't think Buddha included "right concentration" in the eightfold
      path without good reason!

      What does "right concentration" mean? According to Samyutta Nikaya
      (XLV.8): "There is the case where a monk -- quite withdrawn from
      sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful (mental) qualities -- enters &
      remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal,
      accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. With the stilling of
      directed thought & evaluation, he enters & remains in the second
      jhana: rapture & pleasure born of composure, unification of awareness
      free from directed thought & evaluation -- internal assurance. With
      the fading of rapture he remains in equanimity, mindful, & fully
      alert, and physically sensitive of pleasure. He enters & remains in
      the third jhana, and of him the Noble Ones declare, 'Equanimous &
      mindful, he has a pleasurable abiding.' With the abandoning of
      pleasure & pain -- as with the earlier disappearance of elation &
      distress -- he enters & remains in the
      fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor
      pain. This is called right concentration."

      Does this mean that jhana is requisite to enlightenment? Well, from my
      reading of Abhidhammatha sangaha, supramundane absorption occurs only
      with concentration at the first jhana level or beyond.
      However, the Mahanidana sutta (and other scripture) supports the
      notion of the dry insight worker, but magga and phala still appear to
      require 1st jhana (at least for a moment). How can this level of
      concentration be developed without "formal practice"?

      On the other hand, formal practice is certainly no guarantee of wisdom
      arising. The practice can easily become just another object of
      clinging and vehicle for proliferation of views, and it commonly does.
      The question for me is not whether meditation is essential or not (at
      some point it IS essential, at other points it is not), but how to
      keep the practice in balance, so that wisdom arises in place
      of clinging to formations and sensations. Practice and reading and
      questioning all come into play.
    • m. nease
      Dear Khun Kom, ... Of course. ... I didn t know this; of course I was attempting to refer to the kusala kind. A belated thanks for this clarification. mike
      Message 94 of 94 , Feb 12, 2001
        Dear Khun Kom,

        --- Kom Tukovinit <kom@...> wrote:

        > When I say "desire" in my
        > message, I
        > strictly meant "lobha", which can be only akusala.

        Of course.

        > (Chanda, on the other hand, can be kusala, akusala,
        > or
        > neither. While there is lobha, Chanda also arises
        > with it.
        > When there is sati, chanda also arises with it.)

        I didn't know this; of course I was attempting to
        refer to the kusala kind. A belated 'thanks' for this
        clarification.

        mike

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