Thursday, July 28, 2022

AN 5.30 Fame and fortune: the Buddha literally called it a 'shitty pleasure'. Don't undermine the power of 'shit' with 'filthy' or 'vile'


From PED: Mīḷha = "shit", not "filthy", not "vile"

: Mīḷha [past participle of mih, Vedic mehati to excrete water, i.e. urine, only with reference to the liquid; Sanskrit mīḍha = Latin mictus, past participle of mingo, to urinate. Cf. Avesta maezaiti to urinate, mez urine; Greek ὀμιχεῖν and ὄμιχμα the same; Anglo-Saxon mīgan to ur̥; in Old High German mist and Anglo-Saxon miox the notion refers more to the solid excrement, as in Pāli. — A related root °meigh to shed water is found in megha, cloud (watershedder), q.v. for further cognates] excrement M I 454 = III 236 (°sukhaṃ vile pleasure); A III 241, 242; Thag 1152; Ja II 11; VI 112; Vv 5211 (with reference to the gūtha-Niraya); Pv III 45 (= gūtha Pv-a 194); Dhp-a II 53 (°ṃ khādituṃ).

-kāsu cesspool Pañca-g 23;
-kūpa pit of excrement, cesspool Pañca-g 22.

Mīḷhakā = "cesspool full of shit", not "pile of vile filth"

: Mīḷhakā (feminine) [from mīḷha; cf. BHS mīḍha-ghaṭa] cesspool S II 228 (so read for Text piḷhakā; v.l. miḷhakā). See also piḷhakā. The translation (K.S. II 155) gives "dung beetle."

Thanissaro, correct translation

“May I have nothing to do with honor, Nāgita, and honor nothing to do with me. Whoever cannot obtain at will—without difficulty, without trouble—as I do, the pleasure of renunciation, the pleasure of seclusion, the pleasure of peace, the pleasure of self-awakening, let him consent to this slimy-excrement-pleasure, this torpor-pleasure, this pleasure of gains, offerings, & fame.”

  1. waste matter discharged from the bowels; feces.

Bodhi: wrong translation

“Let me never come upon fame, Nāgita, and may fame never catch up with me. One who does not gain at will, without trouble or difficulty, this bliss of renunciation, bliss of solitude, bliss of peace, bliss of enlightenment that I gain at will, without trouble or difficulty, might accept that vile pleasure, that slothful pleasure, the pleasure of gain, honor, and praise.”

adjective: vile; 

    extremely unpleasant.
    "he has a vile temper"
    morally bad; wicked.
    "as vile a rogue as ever lived"

Sujato: wrong translation

Let them enjoy the filthy, lazy pleasure of possessions, honor, and popularity.”

  1. disgustingly dirty.
    "a filthy hospital with no sanitation"

Frankk: correct translations

option 1: elegant concise word, but uses colloquial slang

So taṃ mīḷhasukhaṃ middhasukhaṃ lābhasakkārasilokasukhaṃ sādiyeyya.
Let them enjoy the shitty pleasure, lazy pleasure of possessions, honor, and popularity.

option 2: avoids slang, but translation less concise

So taṃ mīḷhasukhaṃ middhasukhaṃ lābhasakkārasilokasukhaṃ sādiyeyya.
Let them enjoy the pleasure of possessions, honor, and popularity. That is a lazy pleasure, a pleasure that is a  steaming pile of slimy feces.  

Why is important to respect the power of 'shit'?

It's an important part of the 31 body parts, the 31 perceptions that helps one develop asubha perceptions that lead to disintegration of our illusions of self and beauty of self and others. 

Shit is easily accessible (unlike most of the other 31 body parts), visceral, smelly. A daily reminder, if we are dedicated to practicing the Buddha's teaching sincerely, to give our asubha practice a healthy boost. I recommend staying at least an extra minute or two after you excrete feces daily, to really revel in the experience and develop the asubha perception. We are all literally bags of smelly shit, and the smell is barely hidden by our filthy skin. When the cat gets out of the bag, we're exposed for the pile of shit that we truly smell like. 

The other 31 body parts are not so easily accessible (unless you have powerful samādhi and psychic powers).

In AN 5.30, look at how the sutta ends. 
So taṃ mīḷha-sukhaṃ middhasukhaṃ lābhasakkārasilokasukhaṃ sādiyeyya.
Let them enjoy the pleasure of possessions, honor, and popularity. That is a lazy pleasure, a pleasure that is a  steaming pile of slimy feces.  
Asitapītakhāyitasāyitassa kho, nāgita, uccāra-passāvo—
What you eat, drink, chew, and taste ends up as excrement (uccāra) and urine.
eso tassa nissando.
This is its outcome.
Piyānaṃ kho, nāgita, vipariṇāmaññathābhāvā uppajjanti sokaparidevadukkhadomanassupāyāsā—
When loved ones decay and perish, sorrow, lamentation, pain, sadness, and distress arise.
eso tassa nissando.
This is its outcome.
Asubhanimittānuyogaṃ anuyuttassa kho, nāgita, subhanimitte pāṭikulyatā saṇṭhāti—
When you pursue meditation on the aspect of ugliness, revulsion at the aspect of beauty becomes stabilized.
eso tassa nissando.
This is its outcome.
Chasu kho, nāgita, phassāyatanesu aniccānupassino viharato phasse pāṭikulyatā saṇṭhāti—
When you meditate observing impermanence in the six fields of contact, revulsion at contact becomes stabilized.
eso tassa nissando.
This is its outcome.
Pañcasu kho, nāgita, upādānakkhandhesu udayabbayānupassino viharato upādāne pāṭikulyatā saṇṭhāti—
When you meditate observing rise and fall in the five grasping aggregates, revulsion at grasping becomes stabilized.
This is its outcome.”
This is its outcome.”
eso tassa nissando”ti.
eso tassa nissando”ti.

The Buddha was deliberate and specific in using 'shit' to refer to 31 body parts practice, and associate that visceral sight, sound, smell of dropping shit with the pleasure of seeking fame and fortune and reputation.


Translators: Do not undermine the power of feces with concerns of offending polite society with strong language. Your job is to translate and convey the Buddha's words and meaning, not to pander to the public's insecurities and inability to deal with the truth of reality;  that we are literally bags of smelly feces. 

Forum dicussion

Johann wrote: Tue Aug 02, 2022 5:21 amWhat a fermentation (fart)... to tell other people public to be just like that. Yet, does he get the smell here, the good householder? The rejoicing with what, sharing of what, in his poems up and on? Yet then even a google piece, well formed, to shy to take on own asubha imagination.

(btw.: Of couse, the Buddha, as well his disciples, do not make use of vulgar words, speech and there are better words as the last suggested, transporting the message clear while not using the language of the dirty streets and common low folk)

Anyway, Mudita.

Re: powerful and visceral daily asubha that anyone and everyone can do

Post by frank k » Sat Aug 06, 2022 2:18 am
Reference and proof please?
You're assuming many things there.
1. Maybe not every culture has hangups about natural bodily functions.
2. Maybe there are slang and colloquial terms in common use not considered improper language for everyday use.
3. I've seen no evidence in the suttas of the Buddha being elitist and shunning certain castes, professions, or "vulgar" words in his language.
4. Even if we assume there are 'vulgar' words avoided, what evidence do you have that the equivalent of 'shit' is one of those?
5. Even if we assume there are 'vulgar' words avoided, and that pali for 'shit' is one of them, what's to prevent the Buddha from using a vulgar word deliberately for dramatic effect? There's the sutta where the Buddha picks up a piece of dry cow shit to point out something in a talk with the bhikkhus, is that not vulgar? Is that something you would do in polite society?

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

🔗📝 collection of notes on 'mudita' (rejoicing in skillful Dharmas)


4👑☸ → EBpedia📚 → mudita   

mudita : rejoicing in skillful Dharmas

✅ one rejoices in virtuous, skillful Dharmas in oneself, in others, or both in oneself and others.
* virtuous skillful Dharma can be a bodily action, a verbal action, or mental action (if you're a mind reader you can rejoice in virtuous thoughts someone is thinking or about to think).
* The skillful Dharma can be from the past, present, or future.
* an action that deliberately avoids unskillful Dharmas, is also a skillful Dharma.
* the person one is observing performing virtuous Dharma is typically, but not necessarily experiencing joy. Example: someone does an action because "it's the right thing to do", but they feel pain instead of joy.
✅ Mudita is nearly synonymous or the immediate precursor to pamojja and pīti in the seven awakening factors 4😁 , and pīti in the first two jhānas. (AN 4.125 and AN 4.126)
✅ Mudita as a brahma-vihara 3.😊 , in the Buddha's EBT , is in some ways more versatile than pre-Buddhist Mudita, but in other ways more restrictive to bring it into conformity with the Buddha's Dharma that leads to Nirvana instead of just good rebirth in Brahma realm. (see par for the Buddha )
⛔ Mudita is not an indiscriminate rejoicing at someone experiencing joy, especially if they are joyful from performing unskillful Dharmas.



Notes on 4bv brahma vihāra 🔗📝

Is this Mudita? Cases that fall in the cracks

 Example 1: someone performs an action that accords with skillful Dharma, but instead of being joyful, they experience much pain.

For example, someone finds a lost wallet with a lot of money, and instead of stealing it and keeping it for themself, they return the wallet to its owner. They experience no joy, but a lot of pain as a result of doing this.

The typical examples of Mudita, you experience joy when others are experiencing joy doing some action in accordance with skillful Dharma. 

In this example, is it Mudita you experience joy knowing they performed skillful Dharma, even though they feel pain in the moment, because you know in the future, they will experience joy as a result of following skillful Dharma principles?

Example 2: someone experiencing gladness at doing actions that are neither skillful nor unskillful Dharmas, just neutral

Vimutti magga, stipulates they need to be in accordance with skillful dharmas, and suttas AFAIK imply that and don't give any examples of experiencing mudita rejoicing for something that it unskillful, or neutral.
For example someone is talented singer and they enjoy singing. Do you rejoice simply because they have that talent?
How about Frank Sinatra, the famous singer, singing for some of his friends who are known mobsters?
Should you have mudita for someone with singing talent entertaining criminals? 

Forum discussion

interesting question on how you direct mudita to all beings (who would be unlikely to all be enjoying doing skillful actions at the same time)? 

Johann wrote: Thu Jul 28, 2022 4:33 am...
Guessing good householder reflects on the Kalama Sutta. Like in all Suttas the Sublime Buddha does not teach non-afflicted higher ways, but simply points out how Noble do. "There is the case where a Noble disciple..."

So then: How does, in which way of thinking, good householder develop mudita toward all and dwell there.

ariya savako = disciple of the noble ones, not 'noble disciple' (who has attained at least stream entry).
I believe the commentary claims stream entry (cite reference please?)
But I know of no sutta that says that. ... sekha.html

To pervade all direction and all beings with mudita brahmavihara, it doesn't mean all beings have to be performing a skillful Dharma at the same moment. It just means you pervade that state of mind and radiate that energy in all directions.
I can instantly generate mudita contemplating the meaning and beauty in the Buddha's dharma, and pervade that energy in all directions or toward specific beings.

But I can't follow Vism. directions, watch a murderer who enjoys killing people, and then experience empathetic joy that the murderer is enjoying something evil. That wouldn't be the Buddha's definition of mudita anymore.

Monday, July 25, 2022

Mudita (as one of 4 brahma-vihara): What is it exactly? Vism. is absolutely wrong.


Mudita (as one of 4 brahma-vihara)

Visuddhimagga definition of mudita is absolutely wrong, in contradiction with EBT

Vism. goes off some twisted tangent on developing non-jealousy for other beings. 

Sacepissa so soṇḍasahāyo vā piyapuggalo vā atīte sukhito ahosi, sampati pana duggato durūpeto, atītameva cassa sukhitabhāvaṃ anussaritvā "esa atīte evaṃ mahābhogo mahāparivāro niccappamudito ahosī"ti tamevassa muditākāraṃ gahetvā muditā uppādetabbā "anāgate vā pana puna taṃ sampattiṃ labhitvā hatthikkhandhaassapiṭṭhisuvaṇṇasivikādīhi vicarissatī"ti anāgatampissa muditākāraṃ gahetvā muditā uppādetabbā.
86.But if his boon companion or the dear person was happy in the past but is now unlucky and unfortunate, then gladness can still be aroused by remembering his past happiness and apprehending the glad aspect in this way: “In the past he had great wealth, a great following and he was always glad.” Or gladness can be aroused by apprehending the future glad aspect in him in this way: “In the future he will again enjoy similar success and will go about in gold palanquins, on the backs of elephants or on horseback, and so on.”
Evaṃ piyapuggale muditaṃ uppādetvā atha majjhatte tato verimhīti anukkamena muditā pavattetabbā.
Having thus aroused gladness with respect to a dear person, he can then direct it successively towards a neutral one, and after that towards a hostile one.

Why is Vism. so wrong?

According to Vism., mudita means you should arouse gladness if your enemy experiences happiness from being successful in their job as a drug dealer, murderer, winnings at gambling in street fights and dog fighting (to the death), success at womanizing, etc. 

That is absolutely not what mudita is about.

Thanissaro's 'empathetic joy' has the same kind of loophole that can be exploited with Vism. mudita.

'Sympathetic joy' has the same problem as 'empthaetic joy', but has additional problems because the first definition of 'sympathy' in oxford dictionary is: feelings of pity and sorrow for someone else's misfortune. 

Bodhi's mudita as 'altruistic joy' corrects this gross Vism. error but...

Altruism means that one acts for the welfare of others, sometimes at the cost of one's own welfare.

This kind of gives brahmavihara a mahayana kind of slant, worried about other beings instead of working one's own liberation.

There's also an ambiguity here. Which part is altruistic?  The person doing the mudita, or the person who is the object of attention must be doing something altruistic? Or both? 

Altruistic joy is certainly much better than Vism.'s indiscriminate gladness at anything your enemy does that makes them happy, but it's still too restrictive and not explained that way in the EBT.

Perhaps the pre-Buddhist Brahma vihara mudita my have focused more on  'altruistic joy', but once we're under the EBT purview of the Buddha, then 'arahant', 'brahmin', 'dukkha', 'mudita', all take on a Buddhist spin and must be understood on the Buddha's terms. 

Vimuttimagga definition of mudita agrees with Buddha's EBT

Note that Vimt. specifically weeds out the loophole that's present in Vism's mudita.

What's truly baffling, is the blatant incompetence of Vism. They based their book in Vimuttimagga,  large parts of Vism. were almost straight quotes out of Vimt., but how could they screw up the mudita section so badly? 

Vimutti-magga section on mudita

What is the procedure ?

The new yogin enters a place of solitude and sits down with mind collected and undisturbed. When one sees or hears that some person's qualities are esteemed by others, and that he is at peace and is joyful, one thinks thus: "sadhu! sadhu! may he continue joyful for a long time!".

And again, when one sees or hears that a certain person does not follow demeri- torious doctrines, or that he does not follow undesirable doctrines and that he follows desirable doctrines, one thinks thus: "sadhu! sadhu! may he continue joyful for a long time!".

That yogin by these means and through these activities develops the thought of appreciative joy and repeats it. Having by these means and through these activities developed the thought of appreciative joy and repeated it, he makes his mind pliant, and capable of bearing the object.

Thereafter he gradually develops appreciative joy for an indifferent person and an enemy. The rest is as was fully taught above. Thus with appreciative joy he fills the four directions.

Vimutti-magga mudita matches up perfectly with AN 5.162, which lists 4 ways of doing mudita 

AN 4.125 and AN 4.126 show that mudita as a Brahma vihāra in the Buddha's EBT Dharma, is merged with mudita and pīti of the 7 awakening factors and 4 jhānas

Proof: we can see this must be so with how these 2 suttas conclude. The Buddha's mudita leads to nirvana of stream entry, non-return, or arahantship in the brahma realm rebirth, whereas the ordinary non-Buddhist Brahma realm rebirth ends in falling out of Brahma realm into animal or hell realm.

709“Bhikkhus, there are these four kinds of persons found existing in the world. What four?

710(1) “Here, bhikkhus, some person dwells pervading one quarter with a mind imbued with friendly-kindness, [129] likewise the second quarter, the third quarter, and the fourth quarter. Thus above, below, across, and everywhere, and to all as to himself, he dwells pervading the entire world with a mind imbued with loving-kindness, vast, exalted, measureless, without enmity, without ill will. He relishes it, desires it, and finds satisfaction in it. 

If he is firm in it, focused on it, often dwells in it, and has not lost it when he dies, he is reborn in companionship with the devas of Brahmā’s company.817"" The life span of the devas of Brahmā’s company is an eon. The worldling remains there all his life, and when he has completed the entire life span of those devas, he goes to hell, to the animal realm, or to the sphere of afflicted spirits. 

But the Blessed One’s disciple remains there all his life, and when he has completed the entire life span of those devas, he attains final nibbāna in that very same state of existence. This is the distinction, the disparity, the difference between the instructed noble disciple and the uninstructed worldling, that is, when there is future destination and rebirth.

(... similar for other 3 realms of 4bv, with different life spans ...)

AN 4.126 is similar, except leading to pure abode rebirth of non-returner

KN Pe: Petakopadesa

Pe 607: Mudita of 4bv linked to pīti and/or sukha of first three jhānas.

Tattha katamā bhāvanā?
607. (vii) Herein, what is the keeping in being?
Mettāsevanā abyāpādavitakkabhāvanā.
Cultivation of lovingkindness is the keeping of non-ill-will thinking in being.
Karuṇāsevanā avihiṃsāvitakkabhāvanā.
Cultivation of compassion 1 is the keeping of non-cruelty thinking in being.
Muditābhāvanā pīti-sukha-sampajaññā kāritā.
Keeping gladness in being is the state of one who acts with happiness, pleasure, and awareness.
Upekkhābhāvanā passavatā upekkhābhāvanā apassavatā upekkhā ca ajjhupekkhā ca, asubhasaññābhāvanā dukkhāpaṭipadā dandhābhiññā bhavasandhābhiññā bhavasandhānaṃ, sā chabbidhā bhāvanā bhāvitā bahulīkatā anuṭṭhitā vatthukatā yānīkatā paricitā susamāraddhā.
[There is(? )] keeping onlooking- equanimity in being as productivity(? ) 2 [and there is(? )] keeping onlooking-equanimity in being as unproductivity (? ), 2 [which are respectively(? )] onlooking-equanimity and looking on at. [There is(? )] keeping perception of ugliness 3 in being [which is(? )] the painful way with sluggish acquaintance, [such(? )] acquaintance being that tied to existence(? ) [belonging] to those tied to existence (1). 4 That keeping in being in the six ways 5 is kept in being, made much of, established, made the basis, made the vehicle, 6 consolidated, 6 and thoroughly well instigated. 6

Pe 1074: Mudita of 4bv linked to third jhāna.

Tattha paṭhamā ca paṭipadā paṭhamañca jhānaṃ paṭhamañca satipaṭṭhānaṃ paṭhamo ca vihāro paṭhamañca sammappadhānaṃ paṭhamo ca acchariyo abbhuto dhammo saccādhiṭṭhānañca chandasamādhi ca indriyasaṃvaro ca mettā ca appamāṇaṃ.
1072. (i) Herein, the first way and first meditation and first foundation of mindfulness and first abiding and first right endeavour and first wonderful and marvellous idea, and the expression of truth, and concentration due to will, and faculty restraint, and the measureless state of lovingkindness:
Ayaṃ paṭhamā disā.
these are the first Direction.
Dukkhā ca [dutiyā ca (ka.)] paṭipadā khippābhiññā dutiyaṃ jhānaṃ dutiyañca satipaṭṭhānaṃ dutiyo ca vihāro dutiyañca sammappadhānaṃ dutiyo ca acchariyo abbhuto dhammo cāgādhiṭṭhānaṃ cittasamādhi cattāro iddhipādā karuṇā ca appamāṇaṃ, ayaṃ dutiyā disā.
1073. (ii) The painful way with swift acquaintanceship and the second meditation and second foundation of mindfulness and second abiding and second right endeavour and second wonderful and marvellous idea, and the expression of generosity, and concentration due to cognizance, and ardour,1 and the measureless state of compassion : these are the second Direction.
Sukhā ca [tatiyā ca (ka.)] paṭipadā dandhābhiññā tatiyañca jhānaṃ tatiyañca satipaṭṭhānaṃ tatiyo ca vihāro tatiyañca sammappadhānaṃ tatiyo ca acchariyo abbhuto dhammo paññādhiṭṭhānañca vīriyasamādhi ca bojjhaṅgā ca muditā ca appamāṇaṃ.
1074. (iii) The pleasant way with sluggish acquaintanceship and the third meditation and third foundation of mindfulness and third abiding and third right endeavour and third wonderful and marvellous idea, and the expression of understanding, and concentration due to energy, and enlightenment factors, and the measureless state of gladness :
Ayaṃ tatiyā disā.
these are the third Direction.
Sukhā ca [catutthī ca (ka.)] paṭipadā khippābhiññā catutthaṃ jhānaṃ catutthañca satipaṭṭhānaṃ catuttho ca vihāro catutthañca sammappadhānaṃ catuttho ca acchariyo abbhuto dhammo upasamādhiṭṭhānañca vīmaṃsāsamādhi ca sabbanissaggo ca upekkhā appamāṇañca.
1075. (iv) The pleasant way with quick acquaintanceship and the fourth meditation and fourth foundation of mindfulness and fourth abiding and fourth right endeavour and fourth wonderful and marvellous idea, and the expression of peace, and concentration due to inquiry, and relinquishment of all, and the measureless state of onlooking-equanimity :
Ayaṃ catutthī disā.
these are the fourth Direction.


Mudita as a brahma-vihara, in the Buddha's EBT, is in some ways more versatile than pre-Buddhist Mudita, but in other ways more restrictive to bring it into conformity with the Buddha's Dharma that leads to Nirvana instead of just good rebirth in Brahma realm.

one rejoices in virtuous, skillful Dharmas in oneself,  in others, or both in oneself and others.

* virtuous skillful Dharma can be a bodily action, a verbal action, or mental action (if you're a mind reader you can rejoice in virtuous thoughts someone is thinking or about to think). 

* The skillful Dharma can be from the past, present, or future.

* an action that deliberately avoids unskillful Dharmas, is also a skillful Dharma. 

* the person one is observing performing virtuous Dharma is typically, but not necessarily experiencing joy.  Example: someone does an action because "it's the right thing to do", but they feel pain instead of joy.  

 Mudita is nearly synonymous or the immediate precursor to pamojja and pīti in the seven awakening factors, and pīti in the first two jhānas. (AN 4.125 and AN 4.126)

⛔ Mudita is not an indiscriminate rejoicing at someone experiencing joy, especially if they are joyful from performing unskillful Dharmas. 

Sunday, July 24, 2022

TITWOW syndrome

Examples of TIT WOW Syndrome

Upekkha is not (only) equanimity

Peanut-butter and jelly sandwich

Mudita (as one of 4 brahma-vihara)

To be continued

DN 33 viveka as 'seclusion' clearly doesn't fit here, in three types of wisdom section

 Viveka here should be 'discrimination' or ''discernment', not 'seclusion'

DN 33, Sujato translation

Tisso paññā—
Three kinds of wisdom:
sekkhā paññā, asekkhā paññā, nevasekkhānāsekkhā paññā. (42)
the wisdom of a trainee, the wisdom of an adept, and the wisdom of one who is neither a trainee nor an adept.
Aparāpi tisso paññā—
Another three kinds of wisdom:
cintāmayā paññā, sutamayā paññā, bhāvanāmayā paññā. (43)
wisdom produced by reflection, learning, and meditation.
Three weapons:
sutāvudhaṃ, pavivekāvudhaṃ, paññāvudhaṃ. (44)
learning, seclusion, and wisdom.
Three faculties:
anaññātaññassāmītindriyaṃ, aññindriyaṃ, aññātāvindriyaṃ. (45)
the faculty of understanding that one’s enlightenment is imminent, the faculty of enlightenment, and the faculty of one who is enlightened.
Tīṇi cakkhūni—
Three eyes:
maṃsacakkhu, dibbacakkhu, paññācakkhu. (46)
the eye of the flesh, the eye of clairvoyance, and the eye of wisdom.

Saturday, July 23, 2022

suttas where 'viveka' doesn't make sense as 'seclusion', 'discernment' makes more sense

 Read this first

Also see 🔗📝 (notes on 'viveka' including Sanskrit definition has 'discernment' and no definition as 'seclusion')

Category: 'seclusion' doesn't make sense in these passages, 'discernment/discrimination' does

AN 3.93 sutta title is 'pa-viveka'

KN Iti 38 is especially noticeable. Analysis here: 🔗📝

KN Snp 5.6 Dhotaka: another sutta where 'viveka' doesn't make sense as 'seclusion', 'discernment' makes more sense

Category: both 'discernment' and 'seclusion' apply together in conjunction

first jhāna formula
7 awakening factors formula: viveka nissitam, viraga... nirodha... vossagga parinamim

viveka not just 'seclusion', but 'judicious seclusion': SN 16.4, MN 4, AN 8.30

Category: 'seclusion' makes sense here, 'discernment' doesn't

(can't think of any references off hand)

Forum discussion

sujato lists some suttas where viveka must be seclusion, gabriel lists one where seclusion doesn't fit

KN Snp 5.6 Dhotaka: another sutta where 'viveka' doesn't make sense as 'seclusion', 'discernment' makes more sense


Sutta Nipāta 5.6
5.6 The Questions of Dhotaka
“Pucchāmi taṁ bhagavā brūhi metaṁ,
“I ask you, Blessed One; please tell me this,”
(iccāyasmā dhotako)
said Venerable Dhotaka,
Vācābhikaṅkhāmi mahesi tuyhaṁ;
“I long for your voice, great hermit.
Tava sutvāna nigghosaṁ,
After hearing your message,
Sikkhe nibbānamattano”.
I shall train myself for nirvanaing.”
“Tenahātappaṁ karohi,
“Well then, be ardent, alert,”
(dhotakāti bhagavā)
replied the Buddha,
Idheva nipako sato;
“and rememberful right here.
Ito sutvāna nigghosaṁ,
After hearing this message, go on
Sikkhe nibbānamattano”.
and train yourself for nirvanaing.”
“Passāmahaṁ deva-manussaloke,
“I see in the world of gods and humans
Akiñcanaṁ brāhmaṇamiriyamānaṁ;
a brahmin travelling with nothing.
Taṁ taṁ namassāmi samantacakkhu,
Therefore I bow to you, all-seer:
Pamuñca maṁ sakka kathaṅkathāhi”.
release me, Sakyan, from my doubts.”
“Nāhaṁ sahissāmi pamocanāya,
“I am not able to release anyone
Kathaṅkathiṁ dhotaka kañci loke;
in the world who has doubts, Dhotaka.
Dhammañca seṭṭhaṁ abhijānamāno,
But when you understand the best of Dharmas,
Evaṁ tuvaṁ oghamimaṁ taresi”.
you shall cross this flood.”
“Anusāsa brahme karuṇāyamāno,
“Teach me, brahmin, out of compassion,
Viveka-dhammaṁ yamahaṁ vijaññaṁ;
the dharma of seclusion so that I may understand.
Yathāhaṁ ākāsova abyāpajjamāno,
I wish to practice right here, peaceful, independent,
Idheva santo asito careyyaṁ”.
as unimpeded as space.”
“Kittayissāmi te santiṁ,
“I shall extol that peace for you,”
(dhotakāti bhagavā)
replied the Buddha,
Diṭṭhe dhamme anītihaṁ;
“that is apparent in the present, not relying on tradition.
Yaṁ viditvā sato caraṁ,
Having understood it, one who lives rememberfully
Tare loke visattikaṁ”.
may cross over clinging in the world.”
“Tañcāhaṁ abhinandāmi,
“And I rejoice, great hermit,
mahesi santimuttamaṁ;
in that supreme peace,
Yaṁ viditvā sato caraṁ,
having understood which, one who lives rememberfully
tare loke visattikaṁ”.
may cross over clinging in the world.”
“Yaṁ kiñci sampajānāsi,
Once you have understood that everything,”
(dhotakāti bhagavā)
replied the Buddha,
Uddhaṁ adho tiriyañcāpi majjhe;
“you are aware of in the world—
Etaṁ viditvā saṅgoti loke,
above, below, all round, between—
Bhavābhavāya mākāsi taṇhan”ti.
is a snare, don’t crave for life after life.”
Dhotaka-māṇava-pucchā pañcamī.


'seclusion' doesn't lead to that understanding.

'discernment' leads to that understandig.

Friday, July 22, 2022

Ways pīti (rapture) in first and second jhāna are the same and different


Ways in which pīti in first and second jhāna, and pīti sambojjhanga are the same

They're both nirā-misa (spiritual), as opposed to sa-misā (worldly) pīti which are based on 5 cords of sensual pleasure.

MN 99 uses the simile of fire that depends on wood to burn, and the jhānic pīti is the superior fire because it doesn't depend on a fuel source, whereas worldly pīti depends on 5 cords of sensual pleasure as the fuel for the fire. 

Ways in which pīti in first and second jhāna are different

first jhāna pīti is born from viveka (judicious-seclusion). That is, 
* the rapture that arises from knowing how to use right view to judiciously separate one self from lust, passion, greed, and unskillful Dharmas. In general, enjoyment of anything in accordance to Dharma. 
* also the rapture of enjoying the direct experience of being judiciously secluded from lust, passion, greed, and unskillful Dharmas. 

second jhāna pīti is born from samādhi. That is, when verbal thinking from first jhāna has been sublimated into subverbal mental processing with singular focus (ekodi-bhava) in second jhāna, there is an exponentially stronger increase in jhānic force circulating internal energy in the body, causing a proportional increase in physical pleasure (sukha). 
The tendency is to respond to this great change in force of sukha (from first to second jhāna), with a mental excitement (pīti). 
Whereas in first jhāna, jhānic force had been somewhat muted and dispersed by vitakka and vicāra (directed thought and evaluation).
* rapture from the direct experience of the increase in sukha and jhānic force
* rapture from Dharmic subverbal knowledge, such as the knowledge one has gained the skill of thinking what one wants to think, not thinking what one doesn't want to think (MN 20), which is not shared by first jhāna pīti. 



Pīti in the jhānas doesn't have to be intense 'rapture', it can be a subtle mental joy

Re: Piti and pamojja

Post by frank k » Tue Jul 19, 2022 4:15 am
I wonder about that. (your assertion that pamojja is less intense than pīti).
What happens when people become skilled in all 4 jhānas, and their natural inclination is upekkha, really not prone to any strong emotion?
Is it not possible for them to have pīti sambojjhanga and do first and second jhānas anymore because we all assume pīti is intense?
I propose that pīti tends to be intense for those first learning lower jhānas, but when one is skilled in all 4 jhānas, pīti, pamojja, and mudita can all be a very subtle mental joy.

Similar to how someone who was in extreme poverty became extremely rich. There was initially intense emotional excitement, but once they became accustomed to their new normal of being rich, mental joy is just very subtle as they take it for granted as being 'normal' now.

Thursday, July 21, 2022

pasāda: what does it mean in the second jhāna formula? serenity, confidence/faith, or purity?

My translation currently:

     DN - Second jhāna Dutiyajhāna Second jhāna
Puna caparaṃ, mahārāja, bhikkhu

(STED 2nd Jhāna)

Vitakka-vicārānaṃ vūpasamā
with the subsiding of directed-thought and evaluation [of those verbal ☸Dharma thoughts],
ajjhattaṃ sam-pasādanaṃ
with internal assurance, [of subverbal mental processing focused internally]
🌄 cetaso ekodi-bhāvaṃ
his mind becomes singular in focus.
🚫(V&V💭) a-vitakkaṃ a-vicāraṃ
Without directed-thought and evaluation,
🌄😁🙂 samādhi-jaṃ pīti-sukhaṃ
with [mental] rapture and [physical] pleasure born from undistractible-lucidity,
🌗 dutiyaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati.
he enters and meditates in the second jhāna.

'pasāda' from other translators' second jhāna

Sujato: with internal clarity and confidence
Bodhi: internal placidity (2012, AN 5.28)
Bodhi & Nanamoli: self-confidence (MN 119)
Thanissaro: internal assurance

Abhdhamma Vibhanga has 'saddha, confidence, faith', but doesn't say faith in what?

        Vb 121.12 – (second jhāna)
            Vb 121.12.4 – adjhatta = personal
            Vb 121.12.5 – sampasāda = confidence

“Ajjhattan”ti yaṃ ajjhattaṃ paccattaṃ.
“Internal” means: That which is personal, self-referable.
“Sampasādanan”ti yā saddhā saddahanā okappanā abhippasādo.
“Refinement” means: That which is confidence, being confident, trust, implicit faith.

Visuddhimagga cites Vb but also some other variations

Ajjhattanti idha niyakajjhattamadhippetaṃ.
141. Internal: here one’s own internal41 is intended;
Vibhaṅge pana "ajjhattaṃ paccatta"nti ettakameva vuttaṃ.
but that much is actually stated in the Vibhaṅga too with the words “internally in oneself” (Vibh 258).
Yasmā ca niyakajjhattamadhippetaṃ, tasmā attani jātaṃ attano santāne nibbattanti ayamettha attho.
And since one’s own internal is intended, the meaning here is this: born in oneself, generated in one’s own continuity.
Sampasādananti sampasādanaṃ vuccati saddhā.
142. Confidence: it is faith that is called confidence.
Sampasādanayogato jhānampi sampasādanaṃ.
The jhāna “has confidence” because it is associated with confidence
Nīlavaṇṇayogato nīlavatthaṃ viya.
as a cloth “has blue colour” because it is associated with blue colour.
Yasmā vā taṃ jhānaṃ sampasādanasamannāgatattā vitakkavicārakkhobhavūpasamanena ca cetaso sampasādayati, tasmāpi sampasādananti vuttaṃ.
Or alternatively, that jhāna is stated to “have confidence” because it makes the mind confident with the confidence possessed by it and by stilling the disturbance created by applied and sustained thought.
Imasmiñca atthavikappe sampasādanaṃ cetasoti evaṃ padasambandho veditabbo.
And with this conception of the meaning the word construction must be taken as “confidence of mind.”
Purimasmiṃ pana atthavikappe cetasoti etaṃ ekodibhāvena saddhiṃ yojetabbaṃ.
But with the first-mentioned conception of the meaning the words “of mind” must be construed with “singleness42”.

KN Pe (nanamoli trans.) 2nd jhāna gloss

Tesaṃyeva vitakkavicārānaṃ abhikkhaṇaṃ āsevanāya tassa tappoṇamānasaṃ hoti.
585. With constant cultivation of this same thinking and exploring his mentality becomes inclined thereto.
Tassa vitakkavicārā oḷārikā khāyanti.
Then the thinking and exploring seem 1 gross to him,
Yañca pītisukhañca nekkhammañca oḷārikaṃ bhavati.
and the renunciation-born 2 pleasure- of-happiness also is gross,
Api ca samādhijā pīti rati ca jāyati.
and so concentration-born (c) happiness and (d) delight are born instead.

Tassa vicārārammaṇaṃ.
586. His heart [which in the first meditation] had exploring's object
Tesaṃ vūpasamā ajjhattaṃ ceto sampasīdati.
becomes (f) confident (clarified) in itself with the pacification of these [namely thinking and exploring].
Ye vitakkavicārā dve dhammānussaritabbā.
The two ideas, namely thinking and exploring, need no longer be recollected,1
Paccuppannā daraṇitabbaṃ.
and what now can be served 2 is the presently arisen
Tesaṃ vūpasamā ekodibhāvaṃ cittekaggataṃ hoti.
singleness due to their quieting, which singleness is (e) unification.
Tassa ekodibhāvena pīti pāripūriṃ gacchati.
It is through that singleness that the (c) happiness comes to fulfilment.
Yā pīti, taṃ somanassindriyaṃ, yaṃ sukhaṃ, taṃ sukhindriyaṃ.
The happiness is the [mental] joy faculty, 3 while the (d) pleasure is the [bodily] pleasure faculty,
Yā cittekaggatā, ayaṃ samādhi.
the unification of cognizance is concentration.
Taṃ dutiyaṃ jhānaṃ caturaṅgasamannāgataṃ.
So that second meditation possesses four factors (§ 565).

Trends and comparisons 

Ab Vb definitely uses the 'confidence' version, with no mention of 'placidity' or 'purity', when it glosses with 'saddha' and other works having to do with faith. 

doing DPR search for 'sampasīdati' (which KN Pe uses to gloss sampasādanam), 
all the sutta references that turn up have the sense of 'confidence/trust', such as lack of trust in Buddha, Dhamma, Sangha leads to lack of practice, or lack of confidence that the Buddha has all 32 marks of great man. 

Vb isn't clear exactly what one is confident in, the meditation object, or the mind, or one self (ajjhatta)?

One of Vism's proposals agrees with KN Pe's "internal self-confidence due to stilling of vitakka and vicāra", and that would not contradict Ab. 

And the winner is...