Disd method

In the directional pervasion, with the forty eight kinds of absorption in each of the ten directions, there are four hundred and eighty kinds of absorption. Consequently, the kinds of absorption in all the three methods amount to five hundred and twenty eight. Q Does mett bh van accelerate vipassan A Mett bh van makes it easier for one to practise but does not hasten vipassan . Q At what stage should one switch from metta-bhavana to vipassana A He can do so as soon as he attains jhana. He does...

Vedanupekkha

As the definition goes (Upa - to approach and ekkha - feeling), upekkha is a proximate feeling which lies between pain and pleasure. It is neither pain nor pleasure. It neither coincides with nor contradicts pain or pleasure. It is felt in the intervals as transition takes place between pain and pleasure. Upekkha is also synonymous with udasina (indifferent, neutral or passive). With every consciousness there arises vedanupekkha, as vedana is one of the seven universal mental states...

Tirana Pari

As the yogi matures in the practice of ata pari he will advance to tirana pari - full understanding by investigating, reflecting, judging the comprehensive characteristics or s ma a lakkhana (universal or common characteristics) of each phenomenon, namely its impermanence, suffering and non-self. Hence the maxim All characteristics at every mindfulness, Investigating and full understanding, This we call tirana pari . As we note the rising and falling of the abdomen (which are known objects or...

Absorptions

Jhana is defined as the wilful concentration on an object. It has two purposes, namely, thinking closely of an object and burning or eradicating adverse things (hindrances). There are three kinds of samadhi (concentration) namely upacara samadhi (neibourhood or access concentration) khanika samadhi (momentary concentration) appand samadhi attainment or full concentration). Upacara samadhi is the degree of concentration just before entering any of the absorptions or jhanas. It belongs to the...

Mental Obduracies and Bondages

I am giving this interim discourse as a reminder to all yogis. In fact, I have been thinking of talking on this subject for some time, and now is the chance. This is known in Pali as cetokhila, which also means a thorny or difficult mind. In essence it is sceptical doubt (vicikiccha) and displeasure (dosa). There are five things which stiffen and hinder the mind from making the right exertion, namely doubts about the three Sikkha SUa, Samadhi and Panna) ill-will towards his fellow monks...

Illumination Obhsa

This may arise just with sam dhi resulting from sama-tha bh van , such as Buddhanussati (Recollection of the Enlightened One) or with vipassan nana. One notable illustration of sam dhi-originated illumination is the case of the house-holder, Anathapindika. Hearing the news of the enlightenment of the Buddha, he was so obsessed with the thought of seeing the Buddha that he woke up at night three times. Every time that he woke up he saw illumination derived from the contemplation of the...

Hindrances to Practice

Nivarana is derived from ni + var, to obstruct, to hinder. They are so called because they obstruct the way to celestial and nibbanic bliss. They prevent the arising of good thoughts in the way ofjhana or vipassana. restlessness and worry (worry or anxiety for what has been done wrongly, or for right actions that have been left undone These hindrances are temporarily inhibited by the jhanas. They are completely eradicated by attainment of magga-phala nanas - sceptical doubt by sotapatti sensual...

Chalangupekkha

Of the ten kinds of equanimity, I wish to deal here the first one, namely chalangupekkha - six-factored equanimity, six-factored because it concerns six objects. Whenever we contact a pleasant object (ittharammana) or unpleasant object (anittharammana), we feel the greed (lobha), lust (raga), or displeasure (dosa) respectively, and never feel neutral or unbiased if we have not come to the stage of mental purification and right knowledge. Also if we cannot note effectively and understand the...

Vassamvuttha Pavdrana

Such Pavdrana is analysed Vibhqjati) as follows Pakarehi ditthadihi vareti Sanghadike bqjapeti vatte karoti Etayati Pavdrana. The bhikkhus after having spent the Vassa or Lent (three rainy months) successfully without a break invite one another for criticism by means of Ditthadihipakarehi vareti sanghadike bqjapeti (causing oneself to approach and listen to the Sarigha) Vatte karoti (do everything necessary to this effect). This is known as Vassamvuttha or Iti Pavarana For the purpose of (none...

Ignorance Avarice Negligence

In what is the world shrouded Kenassu nivuto loko ) and Why does it not shine Kenassu nappak sati loko ) Loka is of three, i.e., three divisions of the universe ok sa - the world or the realm of space, satta - the world of sentient beings or animals, sankh ra - the realm of inanimates or formations. The answer to the first question is that the world is shrouded in ignorance (avijjaya nivuto loko). What is it that you are ignorant of or don't know It is the truth which you are ignorant of and...

Imperfections of Insight

At the initial stage of udayabbaya nana, ten imperfections of insight (upakkilesa or vipassanupakkilesa) arise in him who has reached nana by striving incessantly and who is thus known as raddha vipassaka - one who is striving for insight. They do not arise in the following ariya s vaka - realised person vippattipannaka - one who practises wrongly nikkhitta-kammatth na - one who stops practising meditation kusita puggala - the indolent. The ten imperfections of insight are piti - rapturous...

Ariya Magga

The advancement of knowledge from the pubbabhaga to ariya magga is like submission of official business by the junior staff to the senior or head of department for formal approval. It is only at this stage that the overcoming of kilesa and the perception of the truth are accomplished. It goes without saying that the pubbabhaga magga must be fulfilled as a prerequisite for the attainment of ariya magga, just as the case must be thoroughly studied and prepared by office staff to enable the chief...

The Dhamma

The word ' hammd' (Dharma in Sanskrit and Hindi) -perhaps the most important and frequently used of Pali words - has no simple equivalent in English because no English word has both a generalisation so wide and loose as the word DhammcC in its widest sense, which includes everything that can be known or thought of in any way, and at the same time an ability to be, as it were, focussed in a set of well-defined specific uses. The renderings of the word include nature, condition, quality,...

Accomplishments

There are three siddhas (accomplishments or realizations) which are worthy to note. accomplishment through personal experience or evidence numana siddha -accomplishment by inference okappana siddha -accomplishment by faith saddha). Accomplishment through Personal Experience or Evidence (Paccakkha Siddha) An example is seeing where the four elements, namely visual element, visible object, light and attention (adver-tance) are involved. The simultaneous occurrence of these four elements causes...

The Characteristics

Sabhava, Sankhata, Samanna, - the trio of Lakkhanas. Note at the very moment, only then the Sabhava Lakkhanas are sure to be known. Only when Sabhava Lakkhanas are seen, Sankhata Lakkhanas will become evident. Only when Sankhata Lakkhanas become evident, Samanna Lakkhanas will be seen. Only when Samanna Lakkhanas are seen, Vipassana Nana arises, f Only when Vipassana Nana matures, Magga Nana realizes, f Only when Magga Nana realizes, Nibbana is seen, f Only when Nibbana is seen, one is...

The Triple Round

'Vattd means 'to proceed' or 'cycle' or 'round of rebirths'. With reference to the Dependent Origination (Paticca-Samuppada), Visuddhi Magga speaks of three rounds the cycle or round of defilements comprising ignorance, craving and clinging the cycle or round of kamma or action comprising the kamma formations and kamma process cycle or round of results comprising consciousness or vinnana, mentality and corporeality or nama-rupa, six bases or ayatana, impression or phassa and feeling or vedana....

Humankind is a Rare Privilege

This means the attainment of humanity is a rare thing. Compared to other worlds, the human world has three advantages in the human world the sati (mindfulness) is stronger. In the celestial world, the celestial pleasures (devata sukha) cause beings to be forgetful of doing meritorious deeds In the apaya world, the hellish miseries (niraya dukkha) impair the mind so as to lose track of the dhamma In the animal kingdom, it is fearful and the fear arises without the application of sati. It...

Pubbabhaga Magga

When you close your hand, first you form an intention in your mind to do so. This intention occurs in series. What do you feel when you close or open your hand Who is closing your hand, or which one wishes to do so It is the mind. Don't you feel stiffness, tension and painful sensations They are called sabhava (nature). To note these phenomena is to develop understanding nana). Like the electric current and the movement of the fan, nama-rupa phenomena are not difficult to be discerned. Just as...

Satisambojjhanga

Sati-sambojjhanga is mindfulness as a requisite of an enlightened person or as a factor of enlightenment. There are four foundations of mindfulness (satipatthana) Contemplation of the body (kayanupassana), Contemplation of the feelings vedananupassana), Contemplation of the mind (cittanupassana), Contemplation of the mind objects (dhamma-nupassana) or miscellaneous objects other than the above. The kind of sati referred to here is not ordinary sati, but it is active, vigilant and powerful. As...

Rupa and Arupa Samsara

The three vattas relating to the above are Kilesa vatta. It means attachment to form and formlessness in the form-sphere and the formless-sphere respectively. Kamma vatta. It means wholesome volitional actions leading to and practised in the form- and formless-spheres. Vipaka vatta. It means the five vipaka katatta khandhas of the rupa-brahmas and the four vipaka namakkhandhas of the arupa-brahmas. Wisdom and mindfulness, said the Venerable Ajita, and name-and-form, sir, tell me this when...

One Blow Five Shots

How would you like to do just one thing and accomplish many things In the Discourse on the Established Patitthita Sutta) found in the Book of Kindred Sayings Samyutta Nikaya) under Maha Vagga chapter, the Buddha said just that in his teaching with the following verse Ekadhamme patitthitassa bhikkhave, Bikkhuno pancindriyani bhavitani honti subhavitani. Katamasamim ekadhamme Appamade. Monks, there is one thing which, if practised, can lead to the accomplishment of five other things. And what is...

Second Jhana

Confidence with One-pointedness of Mind It is the attainment of ekaggata (one-pointedness of mind) without the application of vitakka and vicara which forms prominent factors in the first jhana. At this stage also, the yogi will continue with his effort in his mindfulness of the nama-rupa phenomena arising involuntarily according to their true nature, thus developing the paccakkha nana (knowledge gained through personal experience) in respect of the dhamma. Those who have had theoretical...

The Streams

Let us pose riddles - the very question raised by the Venerable Ajita to the Blessed One. Streams flow everywhere What is the restraint for streams What is the constraint for streams The questioner wants to know how to weaken, check and control the flow of kilesa streams (nivarana), and how to cut them off totally (pidahana). To these the Blessed One replied that their restraint is mindfulness - sati tesam nivaranam - and the constraint is wisdom -panna tesam pidahanam. They are dammed by...

Third Jhana

Upasampqija viharati pitiya ca Viraga upekkhakoca viharati satoca Sampajano sukhin ca Kayena patisamvedati. With the fading away of piti as well, He dwells in equanimity, mindful and fully aware. He feels bliss (sukham with his body, he enters upon and dwells in the third jhana, on account of which the Noble Ones announce Upekkhako satima sukha-viharati - He dwells in bliss who has equanimity and is mindful. Vitakka and vicara have already been stilled in the second jhana, and now in this jhana...

Wheels of Conjuncture

This topic is chosen to answer the question Is there any relationship between past kamma and present perception of dhamma Bhikkhus, there are these four wheels wherewith, a fourfold wheel, of gods and men so endowed, rolls on, namely dwelling in a suitable place, association with the good, self-control, accumulation of merit in previous existences. The four cakkas blessings or wheels of fulfilment are Patirupadesav sa - living in a suitable place Sappurisupanissaya - association with good...

Viriyupekkha

It is a compound of two words - viriya energy or effort and upekkha equanimity . Thus, viriyupekkha means equanimity of energy. It is a name for the equanimity consisting in the evenness of energy. Let us examine the hidden or implied definition of viriya. It is said, 'Virassa bhavo viriyani - because it has the nature of courage, vigour or heroic effort, it is called viriya. It has patient endeavour ussaha as its salient characteristic lakkhana . It also implies unshrinking effort with...

Loving Kindness Meditation

Metta, one of the illimitables or boundless states appamanna or divine abidings Brahmavihara , is a common usage in Buddhism, though its significance is rarely understood. According to the definition Mijjhati sinihyatiti Metta because of the nature of friendliness, wetness sensibility and adherence it is termed metta in essence, it is Sineha5 or SnehcC friendship which has the same rendering. It is synonymous with Adosa non-resentment or goodwill , one of the three wholesome roots. Its object...

Elements of Exertion

The Elements of Effort Padhaniyanga- padhana anga are the following five qualities Faith saddha or confidence for a Buddhist means belief in the Perfect One's Enlightenment or in the Three Jewels, by taking his refuge in them. His faith should be reasoned and rooted in understanding. A Buddhist's faith is not in conflict with the spirit of inquiring. Thus, saddha is not blind faith. It is confidence based on knowledge. Faith is called the seed of all wholesome states because, according to the...

Sensuousness

So far we have spent some time on jhana - the first jhana. We have not discussed kama sensuousness , without which the discussion jhana will not be complete. Previously, I have touched on it briefly in order not to cause confusion. Now, I wish to talk about kama. Kama is of two kinds vatthu kama - objective sensuousness kilesa kama - subjective sensuousness The vatthu kama vatthu - object kama - sensuousness means objective sensuousness, object-base of sensuousness or sense desire as object. It...

Ten Armies of Mara

In this sensuous world, people go after sensuous objects and desires. They consider them as the real pleasures. Neglecting the dhamma, they end their lives. In fact they have enjoyed such sensuous pleasures throughout samsara, and still they do not wish to relinquish them. Now the bhikkhus have left such worldly pleasures either temporarily or permanently and are practising the dhamma in order to free themselves from the akus-ala courses of action. They are said to have won over the Armies...

Preliminary Practice

This means pre-jhanic or preliminary practice in order to prepare the yogi for the mainjhanic practice. It covers four elements, namely effort viriya , mindfulness sati , calmness passaddhi and concentration samadhi . Viriya has four elements caturanga . The yogi vows to make effort thus 'Let my flesh and blood dry up leaving only the skin, bones and sinews, let me die, I shall not fail'. Such is the kind of courage the yogi should possess. When he is faced with severe feeling vedana he will...

Kamasugati Samsara

The three vattas relating to kamasugati samsara happy course of existence in the sensuous world are Kilesa vatta It means desire for sensuous pleasures, such as, taking pleasure in and attachment to pleasant sight, sound, smell, taste and touch. Kamma vatta It means the three domains of meritorious actions of ten punna-kriya-vatthu bases of meritorious action consisting in sUa observing the precepts bhavana mental concentration apacdyana respecting the elders veyyavacca serving or helping...

Attachment Nikanti

Craving tanh for unusual events, such as illumination occurring in vipassan , is nikanti. This kind of attachment can be mistaken for delight in mind development bhavanarati as the result of dhamma perception. Just the emergence of this nikanti can, therefore, disrupt insight. One need not speak of how vipassan can be ruined by wrongful clinging to this nikanti through tanh , m na and ditthi. For this reason, the other nine objects of imperfection, if attached to through tanha, mana and ditthi,...

Seven Suitable Things

Equilibrium, balance or harmony of faculties Indriya -samatta , relates to the five spiritual faculties Of these there are two pairs of faculties, in each of which both faculties should well counter-balance each other, namely faith and wisdom on one hand and energy and concentration on the other. Excessive faith with deficient wisdom leads to blind faith, while excessive wisdom with deficient faith leads to cunningness. In the same way, great energy with weak concentration leads to...

Vayodhatu

Vayo-dhatu literally the air element is given as the element of motion, a quality possessed only by this element and none other. Just as in the case of rupa, nama also has its specific characteristics. Nama or citta is that which is aware of an object. Cetasika consciousness-concomitants or mental states are aspects of mentality that arise together with consciousness, colouring influencing the latter, giving a special character or distinguishing quality to the mind. Examples are phassa contact...

Pahana Parihha

This is 'full understanding by overcoming or abandoning', starting from the stage of bhanga nana knowledge consisting in the contemplation of dissolution of all forms of existence . Here the yogi sees the terminal instead of the beginning and the middle, perceiving that both mind and matter, which constitute his personality, are in a state of rapid flux, not remaining for two consecutive moments the same. Pah na means freeing, abandoning. Since the yogi sees the dissolution of existence, he is...

Buddhist Ceremonies of the Vassa Lent

Pavarand means invitation and has come to be a name given to a meeting held at the end of the rainy season, during which, members of the Sarigha having dwelt cheek byjowl for three months, grievances might have made themselves felt. Mutual confession was invited Pavareti on this valedictory occasion in accordance with the tradition of the Sarigha. It is of four kinds

Insight Meditation

It is a compound of 'VF unique features of all sorts, and 4Passatt' observing. It is defined as Insight Meditation. Insight is so called from its close examination of the characteristics of impermanence, etc. Because the work to be done by insight is accomplished through the path magga , so it is called Path. And because fruition phala examines closely the truth of cessation and comes next after the path, so it is called Fruition. By means of spiritual insight knowledge called vipassana nana,...

Ekaggata

One-pointedness, synonymous with samddhi orjhana. The consciousness which is associated with these factors is known asjhana sampayutta citta. Vitakka has the quality of applying, aiming or directing the mind citta to the target in a continuous manner. It is active and shiny. It is the opposite of thina-middha sloth and torpor where the mind is dull, inactive and slack. Vitakka has a blossoming effect and thina-middha has a withdrawal effect. Vitakka, in conjunction with other associated mental...

Vedana Feeling

If we are not mindful, craving or anger will arise whenever a pleasant or painful sensation occurs. This means feeling vedana causes craving lobha or anger dosa . Both are unwholesome mental states. Again the root of feeling vedana can be traced back to delusion moha which is synonymous with ignorance avijja . For the ordinary worldlings, it is so easy to drift into the cur rent of defilements kilesas as a result of seeing or hearing. The current may flow at a slow pace or at a fast rate - at...

Buddha lays down the Dhamma Principles

In the practice of Dhamma to overcome kilesas, Buddha lays down two principles. But before I come to these principles, I would like to relate an event leading to the exposition of these principles. Hearing that 'On this day, in the last watch of the night, the parinibbana of the Samana Gotama will take place', Subhadda, a wandering ascetic, had this thought 'I have heard that Tathagatas arise in the world only rarely. Today, in the last watch of the night, the parinibbana of the Samana Gotama...

Charlie Wuvanich Meditation

We would like to acknowledge here our deep and sincere gratitude to the many yogis who have come from many parts of the world to practise under Sayadaw U Pandita and given valuable suggestions, to Leon Prolius posthumously , for his dedication to this noble deed, to Chris MacLachlan for his persistent labour and to Chayanont Charlie Wuvanich of Thailand for his valuable support. Also to yogis in Malaysia, particularly those from Malaysian Buddhist Meditation Centre, Santisukharama and Buddhist...