Samatha Overpowering the Path

Kelly Gordon Weeks, modified 1 Month ago.

Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 72 Join Date: 8/9/20 Recent Posts
 After 6 months of strong samatha practice something profound occurred to me today in my sit. I thought that the path was lost on me after several cycles. However, what I discovered is that my samatha skills had improved so much that they were overpowering my clarity of the path.

After reading an inspirational post by Shargrol on the Streamentry reddit sub I decided to try something different. Instead of focusing attention, I relaxed and let my mind do whatever it wanted. I quickly discovered that my mind/body went to a much different place than it normally does. I just observed what was and what was happening. My mind didn't wander like I fear it would. Instead it seemed as though I was cycling through the nanas naturally. 

This sit was by far much more unpleasant than my typical jhana practice, and I'm okay with that as I don't want to use jhana as a way to escape what is really happening with my mind/body. 

I have two questions. Does insight progress occur while practicing samatha or is samatha just a trip to fantasy land? How can I tell the difference between the nanas and jhana? Sometimes they seem to run into each other.

Thank you for reading this!

-Kelly


 
George S, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 1551 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
That's your insight (which occurred after practicing jhana, classical way):- jhana is a temporary refuge, albeit a very pleasant and healing one. Clarity about suffering is preferable to blissed out ignorance of suffering.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 1674 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
We get absorbed in Jhana, in a movie on TV, in the issue about our job, in anger about our boss, in love with a flower ... etc ... 

All this is absorption. However we are working on awakening to ALL of This. Whatever This might be we notice it/pay attention to it/clearly comprehanding it and by doing so disembed from it. 
Be it Jhana or an itch.

Is it Nana or a Jhana or both ???
I don't know, ... let me check; 
... hearing, hearing, touching, heaviness, hearing, coolness, ... (what was that question again??? ) 

​​​​​​​emoticon 
George S, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 1551 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
Right - nanas, jhanas, bananas, samsaras, nibbanas ... NOW ​emoticon 
Kelly Gordon Weeks, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 72 Join Date: 8/9/20 Recent Posts
By disembed you mean detaching ourselves from it?
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 1674 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Disembed as in Clearly Comprehanding that This is Happening right now. As opposed to embedded into , say, the story on the TV screen not knowing one is sitting on the sofa while watching the show. 

Every so often we Awake in the moment aware of the myriad of arising experiences besides that one story on the TV screen (good story but not the whole picture). 

By noting/noticing the experience , we Objectify it hence are not cought up in It. 

Or something like that emoticon 
Kelly Gordon Weeks, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 72 Join Date: 8/9/20 Recent Posts
Thank you for explaining this!
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Pepe, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 332 Join Date: 9/26/18 Recent Posts
Hi Kelly, 

Since you mentioned reading something about Shargrol in Reddit, you might also want to check some other of his posts: 

A blend of Concentration and Vipassana
Concentration and Vipassana aren’t so different
Concentration and nanas

And from Daniel Ingram's posts compilation:

Vipassana Jhanas and the Progress of Insight
How the Vipassana Jhanas and the Seven Factors of Awakening can help
 
The Vipassana Jhanas (MCTB2) 
Kelly Gordon Weeks, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 72 Join Date: 8/9/20 Recent Posts
Thank you! I'll check out those links!
Kelly Gordon Weeks, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Samatha Overpowering the Path

Posts: 72 Join Date: 8/9/20 Recent Posts
Thanks everyone!

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