SuttaCentral

Meditation is important but not the main practice


#42

Nope, sorry. :frowning:


#43

MN 107 doesn’t really say that, the achievement of arahantship relies on the ending of mental fermentations (asavas) and is even above the achievement of the four jhanas which without the practice of mind-exercises or meditation will be pretty difficult.

Why do you think it’s not doable for? After practicing a little it’s pretty easy for me to enter into higher states while waking within a few seconds or so by concentrating on the destruction of negative unconscious impulses.

If you have difficulties even after trying a lot it probably means that your kamma right now prevents you or makes things very difficult so it’s best to practice the Eightfold Path.

But in my opinion the practice of mind-exercises is more effective for generating good kamma than other methods. Like the practice of surrounding your awareness with metta (loving-kindness). If negative unconscious impulses don’t exist in you naturally automatically won’t do evil deeds, have wrong speech, etc…

Without arahants existing in the world what is the use of such speculations? Perhaps a paccekabuddha or pacceka-arahant will have to arise.


#44

Sir, when the mind is shrouded with ‘doubt’ and ’ lack of adhittana (self determination) , you will be forced to think meditation is undoable. Initially the paramita of adhittana is a prerequisite for progression. Somehow diligently, ardently you have to practice meditation. As you progress all your questions will be answered automatically.


#45

What I meant was that one does not “do” jhana but jhana does you: i.e. it happens to you when you have enough used the first 6 components of the 8FP to eliminate most of greed, hatred and delusion.


#46

To the OP, note that immersion is only one of three praiseworthy things:

“Student, the Buddha praised three sets of things, and that’s what he encouraged, settled, and grounded all these people in. What three? The entire spectrum of noble ethics, immersion, and wisdom. These are the three sets of things that the Buddha praised.”
–DN10

These three reinforce each other. For example, my immersion got stuck by neglecting noble ethics. Now that I read the suttas and am observing more precepts, immersion has deepened and so has wisdom. The practice comprises all three.


#47

We simply use the word meditation for ’ vipassana’ practice. You are right meditation happens we don’t do it. Right mindfulness and right concentration is a must to eradicate latent tendency. I think first 6 steps of the path makes us good human beings but not an arahanth.correct me if iam wrong.


#48

.not even a stream-entrant, I think


#49

Yes not even stream entree😀


#50

Note that the Buddha did not do so. So we have to be clear which context we are defining our terms in.

And in the EBT’s it would seem to me that jhāna is something you do. Jhāna practice being the seated practice where you deliberately enter jhāna.

Vipassana is different. That’s more a result, no? In the EBT context.

The former is the result of the latter. Same with the eightfold path - that’s the path of practice, the jhāna path (the culminating 8th step being jhāna); whereas right insight ( sammā-ñāṇa ), and right liberation ( sammā-vimutti ), are the fruits of that path.


#51

Meditation isn’t the only practice but it’s the most important part of the practice.

The Noble Eightfold Path builds on itself and if one is miccha it affects another. Practicing meditation clarifies view, intention, speech, and action. You can purify the aforementioned through meditation. It enables one to see clearly particularly when practicing satipatthana vipassana.

The Buddha left the home life to meditate and discover what was needed for a successful meditation and he himself insisted upon copious amounts of meditation.


#52

As my practical experience, not in the
Context of EBTs
Jhana - is the state of mind achieved through absorption concentration, the object of concentration could be breath,image,mantra etc in a seated meditation practice. experienced mediator can deliberately enter any of the jhanic states.

Vipassana - Awareness of whatever arises at this moment through momentary concentration. Can be practiced after shamatha or directly.
Vi- different , passana- observation.
Vipassana practice can be defined as Objectively (right mindfulness) and equanimously (right concentration) observing the sensation of the body with the understanding of Anicha(impermanence).
The only difference is the direction and object of attention.


#53

Isn’t the breath also a bodily sensation? So the difference is presumably the type of attention involved, the degree of focus.


#54

Bodily sensation means pleasant, unpleasant or neutral on every part of the body from head to toe, it is scattered . whereas breath either nostrils or abdomen,you could be absorbed in it.


#55

Yes, that makes sense. So there with breath meditation attention is more tightly focussed on those particular sensations.


#56

Yes you are right, advantage of breath is ,if we observe it as it is (deep-shallow,short-long,fast-slow etc) we are already doing it with right mindfulness,and right concentration.
Whereas as in bodily sensation it becomes very hard because we have to observe pleasant and unpleasant sensations as it is without craving and aversions


#57

If there IS some aversion to an unpleasant bodily sensation, would you note that too? Or is it a strict focus on the sensations themselves?


#58

I recently discovered AN4.163, which clearly distinguishes between jhana and non-jhana practice and affirms both as valid. Both are capable of swift insight. One is pleasant. One is not.


#59

Interesting to read AN4. 163. To put it simply, it seems like you can focus either on dukkha or on sukha.


#60

Ahhh. Nice turn of phrase!

I personally seem to have gone from pleasant/slow to painful/swift. :laughing:


#61

We have to be aware of both aversion and sensations. As we keep on observing aversions ,it gradually gets dissolved and simultaneously equanimity strengthens and intensity of unpleasant sensations weakens. That’s is the whole idea of vipassana :grinning: