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The Buddha's approach to upekkha? - Dhamma Wheel

The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
starter
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The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby starter » Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:51 pm

Hello Teachers/Friends,

I've been wondering about the Buddha's method to upekkha, which seems to be obtained through samadhi [finally] as indicated in the 7 enlightenment factors. Since only the 3rd jhana and above can give rise to upekkha, I wonder how those who were liberated with only the 1st jhana reach upekkha, via vipasana I suppose? Did they all contemplate anicca/dukkha/anatta to reach upekkha, or there might be some other methods as well?

Thanks and metta to all,

Starter

PeterB
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby PeterB » Thu Mar 24, 2011 3:11 pm

I think starter there is a danger of becoming too preoccupied with techniques and in thinking that if get all our ducks lined up things fall into place.
For a start the three marks can only be understood if a degree of upekkha is present.
And Upekkha is a vital part of the Brahma Viharas...
I would forget Jhanas and lists and concentrate on some form of Anapanasati supplemented perhaps with the Brahma Viharas.
Buddha Dhamma is not a maintenance handbook with items to be ticked off.

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IanAnd
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby IanAnd » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:09 pm

"The gift of truth exceeds all other gifts" — Dhammapada, v. 354 Craving XXIV

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daverupa
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby daverupa » Thu Mar 24, 2011 7:32 pm

In the Anapanasati Sutta, the Buddha describes how anapanasati fulfills satipatthana:

"And how is mindfulness of in-&-out breathing developed & pursued so as to bring the four frames of reference to their culmination? ...On that occasion the monk remains focused on the {body|feelings|mind|dhammas} in & of itself — ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world."

This last seems to be a form of equanimity. Therefore, equanimity precedes jhana of any kind. Upekkha is perfected later (purity of equanimity in fourth jhana), but anapanasati doesn't begin with it already perfected. There are no catch-22s in the Dhamma.

:heart:

rowyourboat
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby rowyourboat » Thu Apr 21, 2011 8:10 pm

With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha

starter
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby starter » Sat Apr 23, 2011 3:38 pm

Hello thanks everybody for your input.

Just would like to share with you my new understanding about the Budda's approach to upekkha, which is actually outlined in the Anapanasati sutta. After cultivating sila (purification of conduct) and samadhi (purification of mind), the Buddha taught us to contemplate bodily fabrications (breathing) and mental fabrications (feelings) to realize the anicca/dukkha/anatta nature of both bodily and mental fabrications, and then be mindful of the mind (presence/absence of greed/aversion/delusion) and gladden the mind to reach the jhana ("releasing the mind"); after the jhana is reached, contemplate anicca/dukkha/anatta of the five aggregates involved in the jhana to become disenchanted towards the five aggregates, and contemplate dispassion and ending of craving towards the five aggregates.

That's how one can reach not only anagami who has no greed/aversion (with upekkha), but also even arahantship.

Metta to all,

Starter

PS:

"Venerable sir, when this is the path and the method for the destruction of the five lower bonds for the sensual world [for some "bhikkhus"], why does a certain bhikkhu talk of a release of mind and a release through wisdom? Ananda, that is the difference in the maturity of the mental faculties."

"Whatever exists therein [jhanas or formless attainments] of (form,) feeling, perception, formations, and consciousness, he sees those states as impermanent, as suffering, as a disease, as a tumour, as a barb, as a calamity, as an affliction, as alien, as disintegrating, as void, as not self.
He turns his mind away from those states [jhanas or formless attainments] and directs it towards the deathless element thus:
'This is the peaceful, this is the sublime, that is, the stilling of all formations, the relinquishing of all attachments, the destruction of craving, dispassion, cessation, Nibbana.'

If he is steady in that, he attains the destruction of the taints. But if he does not attain the destruction of the taints because of that chandaraga (desire and attachment) for the Dhamma [those states: jhanas or formless attainments] then with the destruction of the five lower fetters he becomes one due to reappear spontaneously [in the pure abodes], and there attain final Nibbana without ever returning from that world. This is the path, the way to the abandoning of the five lower states."

--MN64 Maha-Malunkhyaputta Sutta
http://www.mahindarama.com/e-tipitaka/M ... /mn-64.htm
Last edited by starter on Sat Apr 30, 2011 12:46 am, edited 2 times in total.

rowyourboat
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby rowyourboat » Tue Apr 26, 2011 10:44 pm

Hi starter,

Sounds good, but I would replace 'contemplate' with 'be mindful of'.

With metta

Matheesha
With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha

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daverupa
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby daverupa » Tue Apr 26, 2011 11:47 pm

I disagree with the claim that three tetrads of anapanasati lead to jhana, and the fourth is done within jhana. I agree that liberating the mind, part of the third tetrad, involves the brahmaviharas, upekkha included.

rowyourboat
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Re: The Buddha's approach to upekkha?

Postby rowyourboat » Fri May 06, 2011 6:22 pm

With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha


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