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09/22/07
15-11-2007-The True Teachings of The Awakened One-What is Theravada Buddhism?-Dhamma-Nibbana-Giving-jhana-Right Concentration
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Posted by: site admin @ 5:36 pm

The True Teachings of The Awakened One

What is Theravada Buddhism?

by

John Bullitt

Dhamma

Nibbana

Giving

jhana

Right Concentration

samma samadhi

Right Concentration is the last of the eight path factors in the Noble Eightfold Path, and belongs to the concentration division of the path.




The definition

“And what is right concentration? There is the case where a monk — quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful (mental) qualities — enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters & remains in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of composure, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance. With the fading of rapture, he remains in equanimity, is 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 pleasurable abiding.’ With the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — he enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. This is called right concentration.”

SN 45.8




Purification depends on concentration

“I tell you, the ending of the mental fermentations depends on the first jhana… the second jhana… the third… the fourth… the dimension of the infinitude of space… the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness… the dimension of nothingness. I tell you, the ending of the mental fermentations depends on the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception.”

AN 9.36




The four developments of concentration

“These are the four developments of concentration. Which four? There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to a pleasant abiding in the here & now. There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the attainment of knowledge & vision. There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to mindfulness & alertness. There is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents.

(1) “And what is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to a pleasant abiding in the here & now? There is the case where a monk — quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful qualities — enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters & remains in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of composure, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance. With the fading of rapture, he remains in equanimity, is 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 pleasurable abiding.’ With the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — he enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. This is the development of concentration that… leads to a pleasant abiding in the here & now.

(2) “And what is the development of concentration that… leads to the attainment of knowledge & vision? There is the case where a monk attends to the perception of light and is resolved on the perception of daytime [at any hour of the day]. Day [for him] is the same as night, night is the same as day. By means of an awareness open & unhampered, he develops a brightened mind. This is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the attainment of knowledge & vision.

(3) “And what is the development of concentration that… leads to mindfulness & alertness? There is the case where feelings are known to the monk as they arise, known as they persist, known as they subside. Perceptions are known to him as they arise, known as they persist, known as they subside. Thoughts are known to him as they arise, known as they persist, known as they subside. This is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to mindfulness & alertness.

(4) “And what is the development of concentration that… leads to the ending of the effluents? There is the case where a monk remains focused on arising & falling away with reference to the five clinging-aggregates: ‘Such is form, such its origination, such its passing away. Such is feeling… Such is perception… Such are fabrications… Such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.’ This is the development of concentration that, when developed & pursued, leads to the ending of the effluents.

“These are the four developments of concentration.”

AN 4.41




Noble right concentration

“Now what, monks, is noble right concentration with its supports & requisite conditions? Any singleness of mind equipped with these seven factors — right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, & right mindfulness — is called noble right concentration with its supports & requisite conditions.”

MN 117




What are you waiting for?

Get up!

            Sit up!

What’s your need for sleep?

And what sleep is there for the afflicted,

            pierced by the arrow (craving),

            oppressed?

           

            Get up!

            Sit up!

Train firmly for the sake of peace,

Don’t let the king of death,

   seeing you heedless 

            deceive you,

            bring you under his sway.

Sn 2.10

“Over there are the roots of trees; over there, empty dwellings. Practice jhana, monks. Don’t be heedless. Don’t later fall into regret. This is our message to you.”

SN 35.145




See also:

·         Jhana

·         Right Effort

·         Right Mindfulness

·         The Four Noble Truths

·         The Fourth Noble Truth

·         “Right Concentration” in The Wings to Awakening

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