Vitakka vicāra (Jhana-factors)

I don’t think you did. But what you have done is to show that the instrumental of time exists in general, however not that it does exist in this particular context where the presence of viharati suggests to the contrary the connotation of duration, as you noted yourself a few posts back.

I think we have already addressed this, so maybe we can just agree to disagree. Actually I agree with one of your earlier remarks showing that piti does not necessarily arise in the 3rd jhana when “iminā vihārena viharato pītisahagatā saññāmanasikārā samudācaranti”, but rather it is saññāmanasikārā related to piti that arise. Like an internal state that is usually present when piti is present, without being piti per se, like the habit of feeling piti and perhaps some kind of feeling of missing it.

Yes, but you also said two sentences earlier in the same paragraph:

Hi silence

Did you not think it significant that I also said -

Do note that viharami is not an independent verb here, but is part of the periphrastic construction “upasampajja viharāmi”. It’s merely an auxillary verb used to convey a durative sense to the periphrasis.

While the periphrasis may acquire a durative sense from the auxiliary verb, is there a grammatical injunction that the durative aspect may not terminate or be terminated at any time? This goes right to the heart of what I was alluding to previously - even if the periphrasis is given a durative aspect, it is not necessary to say that subsequent actions share in that periphrasis. Take a look at Warder for the Pali idiom used if double-periphrasis is intended to be communicated.

Take a look at the one place where the Temporal Instrumental+present participle+3rd party verb structure occurs outside of the context of the jhanas. That’s in MN 122 -

Ayaṃ kho panānanda, vihāro tathāgatena abhisambuddho yadidaṃ—sabba­nimittā­naṃ amanasikārā ajjhattaṃ suññataṃ upasampajja viharituṃ. Tatra ce, ānanda, tathāgataṃ iminā vihārena viharantaṃ bhavanti upasaṅkamitāro bhikkhū bhikkhuniyo upāsakā upāsikāyo rājāno rājamahāmattā titthiyā titthiyasāvakā. Tatrānanda, tathāgato viveka­ninneneva cittena vivekapoṇena viveka­pabbhā­rena vūpakaṭṭhena nekkham­mā­bhira­tena byantībhūtena sabbaso āsa­vaṭṭhā­nīyehi dhammehi aññadatthu uyyo­jani­ka­paṭi­saṃ­yuttaṃ­yeva kathaṃ kattā hoti.

Here, you have a durative periphrasis upasampajja viharituṃ, followed by the Temporal Instrumental iminā vihārena in conjunction with the pr.p. viharantaṃ, followed by the next event. Surely, it is patently clear that in order to give the talk, the Buddha arose from the dwelling-in-Emptiness? To me, this is crystal clear that the Instrumental here is not an Instrumental of Duration, but an Instrumental of Time When.

That being said, this does not prove that the Temporal Instrumental used in relation to the jhana passages is also an Instrumental of Time When. For its identity, we need to address your point arguing for an Instrumental of Duration -

OK, if I understand your point correctly, you are saying that in the 3rd Jhana which is “without rapture”, it is still possible to experience things related to rapture, perhaps as a memory. But, you’ll need to deconflict this theory with the DN 9 elaboration -

Puna caparaṃ, poṭṭhapāda, bhikkhu pītiyā ca virāgā upekkhako ca viharati sato ca sampajāno, sukhañca kāyena paṭisaṃvedeti, yaṃ taṃ ariyā ācikkhanti: ‘upekkhako satimā sukhavihārī’ti, tatiyaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati. Tassa yā purimā samā­dhi­ja­pīti­su­kha­su­khuma­sacca­saññā, sā nirujjhati. Upekkhā­su­kha­su­khuma­sacca­saññā tasmiṃ samaye hoti, upekkhā­su­kha­su­khuma­sac­casaññī­yeva tasmiṃ samaye hoti. Evampi sikkhā ekā saññā uppajjati, sikkhā ekā saññā nirujjhati.

And then, with the fading of rapture, he remains equanimous, mindful, & alert, and senses pleasure with the body. He enters & remains in the third jhana, of which the Noble Ones declare, ‘Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.’ His earlier perception of a refined truth of rapture & pleasure born of concentration ceases, and on that occasion there is a perception of a refined truth of equanimity (and pleasure). On that occasion he is one who is percipient of a refined truth of equanimity (and pleasure). And thus it is that with training one perception arises and with training another perception ceases. (Per Ven T, with insertions in brackets inserted for the 2 bits he missed)

Now, how do you fit into DN 9’s model your structure of a rapture-less concentration still harbouring perception and attention related to rapture? Even if you translate the sahagata as a relational term, rather than a possessive one, I cannot see how in DN 9’s reckoning it is possible for for things connected with the 2nd Jhana to survive in the 3rd Jhana.

Which brings me to the next point, if you say that things connected with the 2nd Jhana can continue to survive/arise in the 3rd Jhana. When this pītisahagatā saññāmanasikārā pops up in the 3rd Jhana, it is described as an ābādha (affliction). A simple question - at that point, is the experience painful? Everywhere I look in the suttas, the implication is that ābādha is painful. Now, my question is not whether ābādha gives rise to sadness (an affective response), but whether it is dukkha/painful (a hedonic tone).

By now, you should realise where I’m headed. If ābādha is painful, can pain co-exist with the pleasure of the 3rd Jhana, bearing in mind MN 74 and DN 15? When this pītisahagatā saññāmanasikārā pops up in the 3rd Jhana, you do not get to stay in the 3rd Jhana, or retrograde into the 2nd Jhana even. The presence of pain immediately propels one right out of any jhana whatsoever.

hi Sylvester

Yes, we agree on this. However, your argument for why the durative aspect had to be terminated was one we disagreed on, and hinged purely on considerations of doctrinal consistency from your standpoint, which is why I wanted to limit the discussion to facts from the EBTs we can only agree on. I do not and did not say that the durative cannot be terminated (it is the case in English) but I was unwilling to accept by default that it was the case also in Pali, without at least one example.

Yes! I think we finally have that example. Thank you for the research. I now concur that your interpretation is a possibility. I’ll look into your next point when I have enough time.


What does the expression “perception of a refined truth of rapture & pleasure born of concentration” actually mean? Does it encompass for example a perception of lack of piti? Surely not, because the same expression occurs during the second jhana, referring to the presence of piti:

DN 9

“Then, with the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, the monk enters & remains in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of composure, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation—internal assurance. His earlier perception of a refined truth of rapture & pleasure born of seclusion ceases, and on that occasion there is a perception of a refined truth of rapture & pleasure born of concentration.

So I don’t see DN 9 as being a problem for an interpretation of pītisahagatā saññāmanasikārā as being states somehow linked to piti without being piti per se.

I have to say that the texts may seem to send mixed messages on the issue.

In AN 9.41, it seems that the response to being beset with piti inside the third jhana is to aim for the fourth jhana, as if otherwise one would not be able to avoid being beset by piti:

With the fading of rapture, I remained in equanimity, mindful & alert, physically sensitive to pleasure, and entered & remained in the third jhana, of which the Noble Ones declare, ‘Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.’

"As I remained there, I was beset with attention to perceptions dealing with rapture. That was an affliction for me. Just as pain arises as an affliction for a healthy person, even so the attention to perceptions dealing with rapture that beset me was an affliction for me.

"The thought occurred to me: 'What if, with the abandoning of pleasure & stress — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — I were to enter & remain in the fourth jhana

In SN 40.3, the response, instead of aiming at the 4th jhana, seems to be establishing oneself more firmly in the 3rd, which contradicts the impression that AN 9.41 gives on the issue:

so khvāhaṃ, āvuso, pītiyā ca virāgā upekkhako ca viharāmi sato ca sampajāno sukhañca kāyena paṭisaṃvedemi. yaṃ taṃ ariyā ācikkhanti — ‘upekkhako satimā sukhavihārī’ti tatiyaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharāmi. tassa mayhaṃ, āvuso, iminā vihārena viharato pītisahagatā saññāmanasikārā samudācaranti.

“atha kho maṃ, āvuso, bhagavā iddhiyā upasaṅkamitvā etadavoca — ‘moggallāna, moggallāna! mā, brāhmaṇa, tatiyaṃ jhānaṃ pamādo, tatiye jhāne cittaṃ saṇṭhapehi, tatiye jhāne cittaṃ ekodiṃ karohi, tatiye jhāne cittaṃ samādahā’ti. so khvāhaṃ, āvuso, aparena samayena pītiyā ca virāgā upekkhako ca viharāmi sato ca sampajāno sukhañca kāyena paṭisaṃvedemi, yaṃ taṃ ariyā ācikkhanti — ‘upekkhako satimā sukhavihārī’ti tatiyaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja vihāsiṃ.

This sutta also underlines the fact that if such a thing happens, it is because one is not skilled enough to maintain the state’s purity, which means that if it doesn’t mean that one has dropped from the attainment, it means at least that one is performing poorly (I don’t see that the contents of this sutta favor one interpretation or the other).

No, I don’t think so. Do you think that someone who is in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception and suddenly has attention to perceptions dealing with the dimension of nothingness experiences physical pain as a result, and therefore falls off even the first jhana?

AN 9.41

With the complete transcending of the dimension of nothingness, I entered & remained in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception.

"As I remained there, I was beset with attention to perceptions dealing with the dimension of nothingness. That was an affliction for me. Just as pain arises as an affliction for a healthy person, even so the attention to perceptions dealing with the dimension of nothingness that beset me was an affliction for me.

It sounds pretty unlikely to me. The use of the word ābādha is evidently metaphoric, and used to denote a very refined level of unpleasantness, so subtle we don’t even have words for it, which is why we have to use metaphorical language even just to mention it.


Hi silence.

Why do you say physical pain in relation to dukkha?

Hi silence

Could you elaborate? I don’t understand how that relates to the affliction mentioned in AN 9.41 about perception and attention that is related/accompanied by rapture that arose for Ven M in the 3rd Jhana.

Perhaps there is no inconsistency between SN 40.3 and AN 9.41? After all, the latter continues with -

But my heart didn’t leap up at being without rapture, didn’t grow confident, steadfast, or firm, seeing it as peace…

What did you mean when you said

What kind of pain were you referring to?

I don’t think there is, just that they seem to send mixed signals as to how to handle those saññāmanasikārā. AN 9.41 seems to imply that frustration with them is not a strong enough motivation to move to the next level, which requires additionally a certain desire for the latter.

Hi silence. I was referring to the dukkha felt with mind-contact that can be either with or without grief. See MN 148.

In post #24 I referenced a view that basically vitakka-vicara means to immerse in the recollection (sati) of a meditation object. I’d like to back this up by a sutta reference from DN 33, DN 34, AN 5.26, AN 5.73, AN 5.74, AN 6.51, AN 6.56:

…he applies his thought to the Norm as he has learnt and got it by memory, and sustains protracted meditation on it and contemplates it in mind (RD, DN 33)

…he applies his mind to the Dhamma, thinks and ponders over it and concentrates his attention on it (Walshe, DN 33)

…he ponders, examines, and mentally inspects the Dhamma… (BB, AN 5.26)

dhammaṃ cetasā anuvitakketi anuvicāreti manasānupekkhati

In all cases it is about dhamma that a bhikkhu heard.
The PED gives us for anupekkhati ‘carefully considers’. Or more literally ‘continuously-sees-closely’

The meaning is clearly that one does mental operations directed to dhamma (teaching). It doesn’t tell us what vitakka-vicara are but gives us the context to where they are directed, namely teaching-aspects, and not any kind of thoughts. This view also includes non-verbal operations since to reflect dhamma doesn’t necessarily mean with words. This again is close to seeing vitakka-vicara as penetrating a meditation object as expressed in post #24.


The mind is not the body, in the same sense that water is not oxygen gas and hydrogen gas. The former is made up of the latter, but the new resultant whole is greater than the sum of the parts. This could also be so of the mind, being a highr order comple phenomenon than its consistent parts. Leaving rebirth aside for a moment, the workings of the brain can potentially explain our memory, our emotional experience, and so on. That should not be surprising since the number of connections in the brain about 100 trillion - about 1,000 times more than the number of stars in our galaxy.

And it is interesting to consider that while earlier brain systems such as the emotional system, give experience intimately tied in to bodily sensation; later systems can go beyond that. The pre-frontal cortex give us abilities of abstract thought, for example. Basically same hardware (neurons), but organised in a new way, with higher order functioning as a result. This opens us to experience not rooted in our physical surroundings, and not always experienced internally through our bodies - abstract thought is one example of that.

I just read Banthe Sujato translation of DN2 on SuttaCentral. Sections to deal with the four jhanas.
In each Banthe uses the word “body” not “mind” for: “… a mendicant drenches, steeps, fills, and spreads their body with bliss free of rapture. There’s no part of the body that’s not spread with bliss…”

Yes (he translates Kāya as “body” in the jhana similes). But the part of the jhana that uses the standard formula as he does everywhere else in his sutta translations, in third jhana, you’ll see he translates the “kāya” there not as “body”, but as:

“personally”(kāyena) experiencing the bliss (sukha).

Every other translator that I know of, translating Pali to English, goes with something along the lines of “he experiences pleasure with the body.” Ven. Analayo translates the chinese agama 3rd jhana formula parallel as “body” also. I don’t think in the Chinese they have the pali grammar loophole Ven. Sujato is using to treat “kāyena” as a pronoun for “oneself”. Which would mean the Indian and Chinese translators who translated from sanskrit to chinese would have also interpreted kāya (from sanskrit) as “body”.

The Chinese身 (shen, body) also carries the meaning of ‘(one)self, one’s person, personally’.


Regarding Venerable Analayo’s understanding of kāyena just two quick quotes:

My translation [“with his whole being he personally experiences”] is based on the assumption that the reference to 身 in DĀ 6 at T I 42b8 renders an instrumental kāyena in the Indic original, which in such contexts functions as an idiomatic expression to convey personal and direct experience (Maitreya and the Wheel-turning King, p. 16).

The word kāya, used in the Ānāpānasati Sutta’s instruction for the third step of mindfulness of breathing, can have a considerable range of meaning in other Pāli discourses, where it does not invariably refer to the physical body. Such instances can be found, for example, in the expression sakkāya, literally “own body”, an expression which in the discourses stands for all five aggregates and not only for the physical body. Another example is the expression “to touch with the body”, kāyena phusati, used to describe the experience of the immaterial attainments. Since to enter any of the immaterial attainments requires leaving behind all types of form or experiences related to form,8 in such contexts kāya stands for an experience made with one’s “whole being”, not with the “physical body” (The Ancient Roots of the U Ba Khin Vipassanā Meditation, p. 260-261).


I don’t know Chinese well enough to say when it’s used as a reflexive pronoun, but at least passages such as these two, with explicit references to anatomical body parts makes it clear kāya as physical body is what is meant for jhana, and 16 APS (anapana).

Here, step 3 of 16 APS in a parallel:

409 CE Dhyāna Samādhi Sutra

Dhyāna Samādhi Sutra (corresponds with Ānāpānā step 3, sabba kāya patisamvedi)
Dhyāna Samādhi Sutra (chinese to english trans. By Dr. William Chu)
“One is mindfully aware of various breaths suffusing the whole body, as one attends to the exhalation and inhalation of the breath.
As one pervasively observes the various kinds of inhalation and exhalation inside the body,
one becomes aware and comprehends what is happening throughout the body, up to and including one’s toes and pores—[awareness] pervades as if water seeps into sands.
In the same way, with [each] out-breath, awareness and understanding pervade—from the toes to the hairs, permeating all the pores—as if water seeps into sands. Just like a sack that is completely filled from its bottom to its opening,
so too should one experience the body being saturated this way with [each] in-breath coming in from mouth [and/or] nose.
One should perceive that throughout the body, where ‘wind’ traverses, it is as if it traverses through the holes of a lotus root; it is as if it traverses through the eyes of a fish net.
Furthermore, one should not just perceive the breath as going in and out of one’s mouth [and/or] nose; one should also see that the breath comes in and out from all the pores and from the nine orifices of the body.
For this reason, one should understand that the breath pervades throughout the body."

And here first jhana:

SA 484 Buddha says first jhāna formula pīti sukha pervades entire physical body

SA 484 body means corporeal body; jhāna involves whole-body awareness
(SA 484 is from Sarvastivada EBT school. Comments and english translation of key chinese phrases are from Dr. William Chu)
•SA 484: Ananda: “What constitutes a superior pleasure?” …“Ananda, from seclusion, some beings give rise to happiness and pleasure. Such [happiness and pleasure] pervade everywhere, nourish everywhere, and envelop and delight everywhere—the whole body is filled to the brim with them; the body is replete with them everywhere.”
{this phrase is from the standard EBT first jhāna formula}
123b28 離生喜樂
happiness and pleasure born of seclusion
The expression "lisheng xile" (happiness and pleasure born of seclusion) is an exclusive reference to the first jhana {corresponding to Pīti sukha, seclusion -> viveka}.
This passage is indubitably about jhanas, and indubitably about whole body being pervaded by piti-suka. Moreover, the expression "jushen" (whole body) makes it expressly about the corporeal body, rather than any metaphorical body/entity.

Yes, there are contexts where kāya is not referring to physical body. But in the context of 4 jhanas, and 16 APS (anapana) you can check for yourself in his 2 satipatthana books, Ven Analayo in 3rd jhana standard formula (sukhanca kayena patisamvedeti), step 3 of 16 APS (sabba kaya patisamvedi), from the pali, from the chinese agamas, and even in this tibetan sanskrit fragment for 3rd jhana, he interprets and translates kaya in those contexts as the flesh and blood anatomical physical body.

excerpt, Anālayo’s 4sp comparative studies


… Examples of the second type of pleasant feeling, those that do not lead to unwholesome repercussions, are given in the Tibetan version as follows:


Here a noble disciple, being free from sensual desire and free from bad and unwholesome states, with [directed] comprehension and [sustained] discernment, and with joy and happiness arisen from seclusion, dwells having fully attained the first absorption.


With the stilling of [directed] comprehension and [sustained] discernment, with complete inner confidence and unification of the mind, free from [directed] comprehension and [sustained] discernment, with joy and happiness arisen from concentration, [a noble disciple] dwells having fully attained the second absorption.

j3: note body is physical

With the fading away of joy, dwelling equanimous with mindfulness and comprehension, experiencing just happiness with the body, what the noble ones reckon an equanimous and mindful dwelling in happiness, [a noble disciple] dwells having fully attained the third absorption. Such pleasant feelings do not increase desire, but [instead lead to] abandoning it.

The Majjhima-nikāya and Madhyama-āgama parallels differ in so far as they illustrate the type of pleasant feeling that is not related to desire with the example of the first absorption alone,21 without bringing in the second and the third absorption.

Here is the description of painful and neutral feelings that do not lead to unwholesome repercussions in the Tibetan version:

Here a noble disciple generates an aspiration for supreme liberation: “When shall I dwell fully realizing that sphere, which the noble ones dwell having fully realized?” The mental displeasure and painful feeling [due to] that aspiration, that pursuit, and that longing do not increase aversion, but [instead] abandon it …

[quote=“frankk, post:407, topic:2589”]
Yes, there are contexts where kāya is not referring to physical body.[/quote]

Right so. I do not want to argue Analayo’s point one way or the other, but his position does not seem to be as clear cut as you make it out to be. Are you familiar with his Agama Readings that he did for 3 years with the University of Hamburg?

If I remember correctly, he makes the point that the absorptions are a unification. Having a unification, he argues, it makes no sense speaking of mind and body - then it would not be unified.

If you attented these courses, how did you understand this point?

I think it does:

"With his mind thus concentrated, purified, and bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, and attained to imperturbability, he directs and inclines it to knowledge and vision. He discerns: ‘This body of mine is endowed with form, composed of the four primary elements, born from mother and father, nourished with rice and porridge, subject to inconstancy, rubbing, pressing, dissolution, and dispersion. And this consciousness of mine is supported here and bound up here.’ Just as if there were a beautiful beryl gem of the purest water — eight faceted, well polished, clear, limpid, consummate in all its aspects, and going through the middle of it was a blue, yellow, red, white, or brown thread — and a man with good eyesight, taking it in his hand, were to reflect on it thus: ‘This is a beautiful beryl gem of the purest water, eight faceted, well polished, clear, limpid, consummate in all its aspects. And this, going through the middle of it, is a blue, yellow, red, white, or brown thread.’ In the same way — with his mind thus concentrated, purified, and bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, and attained to imperturbability — the monk directs and inclines it to knowledge and vision. He discerns: ‘This body of mine is endowed with form, composed of the four primary elements, born from mother and father, nourished with rice and porridge, subject to inconstancy, rubbing, pressing, dissolution, and dispersion. And this consciousness of mine is supported here and bound up here.’

"This, too, great king, is a fruit of the contemplative life, visible here and now, more excellent than the previous ones and more sublime. DN2.

Unification doesn’t imply an intensity so great that all conscious awareness is lost. Even to know there is bliss, there must be recognition active. It is only in asanna states of very intense samadhi, apparently that such recognition is completely ‘crushed’ by the force of the concentration (the forced fabrication of…) but these are pre-jhanic states, and unhelpful for the development of insight, because they lack recognition, and antta sanna works through sanna or identification.

with metta,

For 16 APS it’s absolutely clear, how he translates and how he personally interprets the body in step 3 of 16 APS (anapana). You can look up in his two Satipatthana books (one analyzing Pali Satipatthana sutta, the other the Chinese Agama parallels). In his interpretation he uses the words “anatomical body” to make it clear he’s not talking about any other kind of body in 16 APS.

As for his personal interpretation of jhana, I don’t know exactly the fine nuances of his interpretation, but at least he translates STED 3rd jhana (standard ebt definition) correctly from pali, and agama chinese, and tibetan.

“Correct” meaning kāya = body. Now if someone personally has an interpretation of what “body” means in 4 jhanas (in the pali->english, chinese agama->english, tibetan->english), then I’m not so concerned, but at least the translation for kāya needs to be consistent in 16 APS and 4 jhāna contexts so the same word for kāya (in translated term) needs to be used consistently in 4 jhana similes, MN 119 (kayagatasati) and satipatthana suttas (and their parallels).

As @alaber 's post (#393) which kicked off this discussion shows, not translating kāya consistently through as Bhante @Sujato has done in the 4 jhana similes to the 3rd jhana formula itself, led to @alaber mistakenly believing Bhante personally interprets 4 jhanas as body being physical, based on how he translated kāya=body in the jhana similes.

Bhante Sujato’s 3rd jhana translation:

“personally”(kāyena) experiencing the bliss (sukha).

If not personally, then who else would be experiencing the bliss? In other words why would the Buddha bother to waste extremely valuable real estate in the short jhana formula to state something obvious? Clearly the “kāyena” is to differentiate physical from mental body, just as in numerous 7sb (awakening factors), the Buddha goes out of his way to specifiy pīti (rapture) as manassa (mind), passaddhi as having both physical and mental parts (kāya passadhi & citta passadhi), and the sukha that results from passadhi affecting “kāya”. In the 3rd jhana, “pītya ca virāga” (rapture as a jhana factor is dropped out), and since we already now the Buddha emphasized the predominant mental aspect of pīti, then the quality of bliss/happiness/joy present as “sukha”, (sukha vedana has both physical and mental components), the “sukhanca kāyena” is to qualify that it’s the physical part of sukha vedana that he’s talking about. This is very straightforward and clear. The mental aspect of bliss, the pīti that dropped out, is replaced with upekkha/equanimity.

Searching for pītimanassa in the pali suttas turns up (64) references for the 7sb sequence:

pīti-manassa kāyo passambhati, passaddha-kāyo sukhaṃ vedeti, sukhino cittaṃ samādhiyati

enraptured in mind, body becomes pacified, one with pacified-body, sukha he experiences. Happy, his mind enters samadhi.

7sb and 4j (jhanas) are covering the same territory. There isn’t a separate samadhi attainment for 4j, and a different one for samadhi-sambojjhanga where there’s a physical body.

This is why Vism. goes out of the way to try to deemphasize 7sb, and recast it as something only enlightened beings experiences as marks certifying their enlightenment. In the EBT, 7sb are factors that lead to awakening, and they are the default way, the default method that one should use to enter samadhi and jhana.

I think the last verse of Ud 1.10 might provide a clue. It is a list of four things that need to be “understood” that ends in pleasure and pain that seems to have something to do with the training Bahiya was told about.

And when a sage, a brahmin, finds understanding
through their own sagacity,
then from forms and formless,
from pleasure and pain they are released.”

I think this is backed up by Snp 4.2. It to describes a training program. Its reference to understanding contact, the seen and heard correspond to forms and its reference to understanding perception corresponds to formless.

Snp 4.2
Rid of desire for both ends,
having completely understand contact, free of greed,
doing nothing for which they’d blame themselves,
the wise don’t cling to the seen and the heard.

Having understood perception and crossed the flood,
the sage, not clinging to possessions,
with dart plucked out, living diligently,
does not long for this world or the next.