A Bodhisattva’s Notebook

March 8, 2009

Buddhist Talks and Teachings

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 5:29 pm

February 19, 2009

Stories of Buddhist Monks

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 1:25 pm

Buddism Heart Mediation – another good dhamma teaching

Buddism Religion of Nature – Good dhamma teaching

Stories of Buddhist Monks – Bhikku notebook

February 18, 2009

Buddhist Monks Notebook

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 8:37 pm

This site is moving to a new domain, please click here: Buddhist Monks Notebook

This blog will remain active and I will continue to post here.


February 15, 2009

Buddhist Chat Room

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 9:55 pm

new buddhist chat room at the Know Buddhism website, link here: Buddhism Chat Room

February 3, 2009

Fifth Jhana

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 4:52 pm

Kayanupassana – his exercise aims to develop insight- seeing the body as it truly is

The fifth jhana is called “The Sense Base of Infinite Space.” It must be kept in mind that these are just names for the experiences the likes of which we are not ordinarily familiar. The experience of the fifth jhana just “feels” like infinite space S it doesn’t necessarily mean one is able to experience all the space in the universe. According to the suttas, one enters the fifth jhana by “not giving attention to diversity.” There isn’t much detail here to go on, but then there is very little detail about any of the jhanas. Suffice it to say that once one begins to explore these immaterial jhanas, the mind will all on its own know how to enter them with a minimum of description. Many people enter the fifth jhana by shifting their attention from the primary factor of the previous jhana to the boundaries of their being. Then, they start to mentally push these boundaries outward. Continue to focus on imagining the boundaries growing ever larger so that the room is filled, the building, the neighborhood, the city, etcetera. As one does this, one will eventually experience a sudden shift and find oneself in a huge expanse of empty space. The first time a person enters into the Sense Base of Infinite Space can quite often be dramatic. One seems to be observing an incredibly large, empty expanse of space. It can feel like waking up on the edge of the Grand Canyon and looking over the precipice seeing no other side and no bottom.

The Mahasatipatthana Sutta: A Discourse on Mental Development

Immaterial Jhanas

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 4:51 pm

Cittanupassana – This exercise aims to perceive and understand any stages of the mind

Jhana without form (arupa jhana, or the immaterial jhanas) is absorption without form, leading to increasing rarefaction or incorporeality. These are finer and finer states leading to less and less denseness of beingness. They are very subtle states of weightlessness, gradually leading one out of material existence. In themselves, they are not the experience of enlightenment, and therefore should not be mistaken as such. In all, there are four main immaterial jhanas with a fifth (or ninth jhana) leading to a psychological state of selflessness.

Vedananupassana – This exercise is an aspect of the mind

Fine Material Jhanas

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 4:49 pm

The Four Noble Truths

These first four jhanas are called the fine material jhanas. Intense pleasure, joy, contentment, and stillness are all states we are familiar with in our normal everyday lives. But the quality and intensity of these factors as experienced in the jhanas is more sublime than we normally experience, thus they are called the fine material jhanas. The next four jhanas are called the immaterial jhanas because they are not like anything we normally experience in waking consciousness. Each of these jhanas has only two factors S the first factor serves as the name of the jhana while the second factor is one-pointedness (ekaggata).

Dhammanupassana – Meditative objects are Dhammas (or mental qualities)

Fourth Jhana

Filed under: Buddhism — James Ball @ 4:43 pm

The path to Enlightenment

The transition to the fourth jhana from the third takes a bit more effort and a bit more letting go than any of the previous transitions. The contentment of the third jhana is still a positive state of mind, producing movement. This positive state of contentment is transformed into an experience of equanimity, into a quiet stillness. In this quiet stillness, there is no movement, no positive or negative feeling in either mind or body. There is just an all pervading, deep peacefulness, accompanied by one-pointedness of mind. Thus, the two factors are equanimity (upekkha) and ekaggata.

What is Vipassana ? – Pinayo Prommuang

February 1, 2009

Third Jhana

Filed under: Buddhism — Tags: , , , , , , — James Ball @ 8:10 am

The third jhana has two factors. You shift from the second to the third jhana by letting go of the physical pleasure (piti) and changing the emotional pleasure from joy to contentment (a more refined, less excitable version of sukha), almost like turning down the volume control on your emotional pleasure. The second jhana has an upwelling quality to it as the joy seems to flow through you. The third jhana is more of a motionless, quiet contentment. The one-pointedness of mind remains as the other factor. Thus, the two factors are sukha and ekaggata.

Luang Por Sumedho”Everything around us is Dhamma”

Second Jhana

Filed under: Buddhism — Tags: , , , — James Ball @ 7:03 am

The second jhana has three factors which are the same as the last three factors of the first jhana. The applied and sustained attention to the meditation object are no longer part of the process. One shifts from the first to the second jhana by shifting the attention from the physical pleasure to the emotional pleasure S from piti to sukha. This has the effect of pushing the physical pleasure into the background and also of greatly calming the mind. The first jhana is a very intense, agitated state; the second jhana is a more soothing experience. The last factor of the second jhana is once again ekaggata (one-pointedness of mind) as it is for all the jhanas.

Luang Por Sumedho – “Innocence is corruptible; wisdom is incorruptible”

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