RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

thumbnail
Nikolai S Halay, modified 11 Years ago.

Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 1648 Join Date: 1/23/10 Recent Posts
Hi all,

First up, I am not an anagami and have no access to nirodha samapatti.

This one is for anyone who has attained a path and hopefully some 3rd and 4th pathers will weigh in.

I have attained at least 1st path with some doubts about whether I am 2nd or not. I just flew on a plane from Australia to Chile and I meditated the whole flight going up and down the jhanas and I had a big fruition which left me different with a perspective that was wider, bigger and the "I" is less sticky.

Anyway, I have been able to access, since I got 1st, a state which I can't find an explanation for. I know all states are transient and therefore should investigate them as such, but my curiosity gets the better of me and therefore I want to ask if this is experienced by others.

This state or mental absorbtion is accessed by willing the mind to be enveloped in the slight build up of sensations/energy at the crown of the head just before a fruition occurs. The mind gets enveloped in it and feels like it is stuck in one spot. No thoughts fly by unless one intentionally wills a thought. It can be held for an indefinite time and the cycles keep occurring in it. When a fruition occurs while I am in this absorbtion the absorbtion gets stronger. I am aware of the whole body in this absorbtion and is unlike any of the 8 Jhanas which I also have access to. It is certainly different to the 4th jhana. It got me looking for explanations in various books on jhanas and I read a paragraph in Mahasi Sayadaw's The Progress of Insight which read

"In one who applies himself to achieving the attainment of fruition, knowledge of arising and passing away will arise at the beginning. Advancing from there in the due sequence, soon the knowledge of equanimity about formations is reached. But when skill in the practice has been acquired, the knowledge of equanimity about formations will arise quickly even after four or five acts of noticing. If the power of concentration has reached perfection, the fruition consciousness will repeatedly become absorbed in cessation by way of fruition attainment. The mind can thus reach absorption even while one is walking up and down, or while taking a meal, and the fruition attainment can remain for any length of time resolved upon. During the fruition attainment, the mind will abide only in the cessation of formations and will not be aware of anything else."

When I first read it I thought Mahasi was talking about cessation being lengthened kind of like I guess nirodha samapatti would be like where conciousness has been turned off. But then I read it again and the part highlighted says only the cessation of formations occurs, not of all conciousness. Any thoughts?

When I revisit this absorbtion it certainly feels like something has shut down. Certain things are not arising, but there is still awareness of the body.

I also read this quote from here http://www.dhammaspread.org/Page416.htm

"In the case of lokuttara (supramundane) jhanas, of which there is almost no mention in Buddhist texts, the basic requirement is the yahn or path knowledge of the first path realized through vipassana development. This is then used as the object of samadhi, and while traditional anapanasati is no longer used, there is emphasis on the out breath, and staying there, using this yahn."

Is this mental absorbtion I talked about a lokuttara (supramundane) jhana?

Can anyone shed light on this strange mental absorbtion I can access at will?

I understand it is just another thing to consider the three characteristics of, but like I said, I am extremely curious about whether others have experience of it and know if this is the phala samapatti that I've heard about. So this post is more or less satisfying some slight craving to know . Apologies in advance.
thumbnail
Daniel M. Ingram, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 3166 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Well, that is interesting stuff.

I would like a little bit more info on that experience and perspective you are talking about, exactly how you get into it, exactly where in a cycle the entrance to it is, how long it lasts, how it ends (sudden vs fades) and how its ending relates to cycles, how hard is it to get back into, what exactly seems to be happening or not happening in it (i.e. exactly how you can tell it is something different) and what happens to it when Fruitions arise.

Things to consider:

Could be related to second path.
Could be related to a new A&P.
Could be related to Equanimity between first and second paths.
Could be something else.

Also, read about the No-Dog, a non-Buddhist term that nevertheless is of value: it is a transjhanic state that takes itself as object and allows cycles to move through it relatively unscathed. This can be found in various places, such as the wiki and I think some very old discussions.

Keep watching it and see what it is and isn't: this is the key with all interesting states and stages.

I almost forgot: that's not Nirodha Samapatti. NS is a giant power-failure of the sensate world and the mind with a powerful afterglow after the mind powers up again that lasts for hours. Nothing else is quite like it, and it comes after a very specialized setup and has very specific requirements. Nothing is going on during NS, not even Nothingness. It is the outsider: it is not a Fruition, it is not of this sense sphere, and it defies analysis as there is simply no basis for analysis, as the old texts say.
thumbnail
Nikolai S Halay, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 1648 Join Date: 1/23/10 Recent Posts
Hi Daniel,

How do I get into it? I can either call up a fruition through the kenneth's eye flicker method, observe the annica of the touch of breath as it ends or the other characteristics ie dukkha and anatta of another sensation or mental image or focusing behind the thrid eye as I have read someone else does. When a fruition is called up, I am aware of a slight build up of energy/sensations on the crown of the head. When that is felt, I will the mind "into" it. When that is done, it feels like a blanket is thrown over my head as this energy/sensations, which are quite blissful, descend from the crown and envelope the mind. There are a few seconds of a pinkish purple colour that is seen through the eyelids when the mind is enveloped.

The entrance to it is directly before a fruition occurs at the crown. When I do it, it is like I postpone or stop the fruition from occuring and utilise the slight build up of energy only before it.

It lasts as long as I want to remain in it. The most I have done is an hour sit.

When I wish to come out of it I will the mind to come out of it. At first it was just a matter of opening my eyes but then I discovered I could get into this state and slowly open my eyes and still be in it. Movement of the body and speech slow down some what when I attempted to move and speak.

When it ends it has that same release that occurs after a fruition. First a feeling like there is a releasing of something at the crown and then 2 or 3 seconds later a bliss wave. The bliss wave or waves are longer and a little bit more powerful than say when I just get normal fruition. They last for about 10 to 15 seconds or rather the longer I am in this state the bigger the bliss wave seems.

I still feel the cycle from a physical angle move up the body and sit at the chakra points for certian periods of time and when it gets to the crown and a frution occurs the absorbtion gets more still, calmer, stronger and more pleasant. There is alittle bit of activity on the corwn chakra in this absorbtion like I am feeling the flow of energy in the crown chakra quite easily.


I actually thought the no-dog state was closer to how the 6th jhana feels with the focus on the witness.

I'm trying to compare the 6th jhana and this other absorbtion as I write. They are different. The 6th jhana is squarely focused on the witness, focusing on the conciousness, the observer. The other state, in it there seems not to be any interest invested in the witness. Something drops away when I go from 6th to this one. I can't seem to explain it well. It is like the mind is stuck in one spot, unmoving. so very still.

Ok, it seems that in the 6th Jhana there is an interest and focus on the witness but then in the other one it drops away and the focus , well there seems to be no focus. This is certainly not like the 7th either. It is a still completely stable state whereas the 7th doesnt feel as stable. Sorry about not being able to pinpoint exactly the difference. Something drops away at the back of the mind . Thoughts don't seem to arise. It is a cleaner, stiller state than any other jhana.

Yeh, I knew it wouldn't be NS. I don't have that access.
thumbnail
Daniel M. Ingram, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 3166 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Alright, I hardly know where to begin with this one.

When you say "A fruition is called up, I am aware..." do you mean aware before, after or during?

Blissful sensations are very likely jhana of some sort, particularly if you can stay in it steadily.

Anything you can open your eyes in but feels slowed down is very likely some jhana.

As to the bliss wave following it, next jhana? Not sure.

As to Fruitions making it stronger, that is somewhat confusing to me. I would need more detail. Generally Fruitions really reset things except for the No-Dog and it is also possible to not cycle back down to the A&P post Fruition but stay up in the Equanimity territory from which Fruitions occur and to get more. Hmmmm...

6th jhana is not the Witness, nor is it naturally focused on the Witness. It is like boundless space, wide, open, but with a presence or luminosity or something somehow thicker or more full or something in it, though these words are not great ones to describe that.

There are depths to all the jhanas. Even the 1st jhana can be really, really still and deep if hit hard, so depth doesn't define a jhana, as any of them can be deep or shallow, hard or not so hard, really samatha-esque or more vibratory or unstable, etc. There are lots of axes on which we can develop jhanas.

I am not sure I have enough info to sort this one out. Keep going and see what you think of it: keep an open mind and keep seeing what it does. I would like more about the focus of the mine, background stuff, and the like. I know you say there is no focus: do you mean panoramic? Do you mean something like the 8th jhana, whose focus is very hard to describe?
thumbnail
Nikolai S Halay, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 1648 Join Date: 1/23/10 Recent Posts
Hi Daniel,

I apologse if I am not good at describing things well.

When I call up a fruition, I am aware only before and after it. If you remember me calling it a "conk out". That "conk out" part is not seen or remembered. Just before and after it. When I say I am aware , I am aware of the build up of sensations on the crown before the "conk out" occurs. That is what the mind is willed into. awouldbehipster at Kenneth's site mentioned a similar state he can access but doesn't have an explanation for.

http://kennethfolkdharma.wetpaint.com/thread/3671599/Nirodha+Samapatti+VS+Phala+Samapatti.+Is+there+a+difference%3F

I am in agreement that it is some sort of mental absorbtion but it is unlike any of the other jhanas. I've read here on page 185 of Henepola Gunaratana, The Path of Serenity and Insight that Phala Samapatti is considered a jhana.

http://books.google.cl/books?id=60XGopCAzwgC&printsec=frontcover&dq=the+path+of+serenity+and&source=bl&ots=VBtrm7et7M&sig=D5BkBs6lnrEWjC7QdJIUYdK8Y10&hl=es&ei=bqZqS5nJJYy1tgeqkfiCBg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CB4Q6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=&f=false

I am grasping at straws here. Maybe it corresponds to that. There is definitely some relation to the fruition somehow. But I am not talking about getting into cessation of consciousness and staying in it. There is a separate experience that I can have by willing the cesstion/fruition to be remained in for a long period, but that is not what happens. Rather, the mind seems to jump in and out of fruition really fast. The state that is created by this experience is similar to this strange absorbtion but not exactly the same.

The bliss wave is the same bliss wave that occurs after a fruition. Though these days, it has lost its wow factor.

Yeh, I am looking for an explanation but as I mentioned, awouldbehipster also couldn't say what it really was. The mind is completely stuck in one spot. Really hard to describe. Awouldbehpster does a better job. The state really does get calmer, stiller and stronger when a fruition occurs. It is related to the fruition somehow. I have no idea what it is though. Not pulling anyone's leg. Just trying to put a name to it.


I know the witness is not exactly the 6th jhana, but there are some similarities with the mental focus. For me anyway. For me, the 6th has the mental focus towards the space between the eyes and back behind that spot. I have to admit, I havent mastered some of these jhanas as I have not attempted to take them to their complete depth. I generally stay in their superficial states. Especially the 6th. I think I should try going deeper.


It definitely is not like the 8th jhana. Which of course is also hrd to decribe because it feels like there is no perceiving but some perceiving at the same time. This other absorbtion has the mind stuck in one spot, it seems like soemthing in the background drops away or doesn't arise of which I am unsure what it is. The mind is still and stuck unmoving, no thoughts, but everything , the cycle and sensations on the body are felt. It a very non reactionary mind, but again not like the 4th jhana. When I go from 4th to this new one, there is something that drops away in the background, like the sensation of "I" is slightly affected. Really hard to explain. I will try and see if I can work on this explanation. Sorry for being vague.

I think I have to dwell in it a little longer to give you a better description. I'll endeavor to do that.

Thanks Daniel.
thumbnail
Daniel M. Ingram, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 3166 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Nikolai,

Well, that is interesting to read about. It will be interesting to see what consensus or controversy emerges as various explorers try to figure out what that is.

Oh, I saw the thread at KFD. Just one thing to consider on a different axis: when Kenneth and I go at it, even indirectly as these two parallel threads on this topic, it is never perfectly clean and free of our underlying politics as very old, but sometimes highly conflicted, friends. Just thought that would be worth mentioning so subtle subtexts are more clear.

So, again, if I get this straight, the setup for this is to get close to a fruition, decide to not get it and then to incline the mind to this state you are describing?

There are so many interesting directions to go from that place just before a fruition. That is where many high jhanas, pure-land territory, NS if the setup before it was right, The Witness, and others can be accessed if one has the talent and inclination. It is a broadly flexible launching point.
thumbnail
Nikolai S Halay, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 1648 Join Date: 1/23/10 Recent Posts
Hi Daniel,

It's quite a unique state indeed. But I feel little interest in dwelling in it of late. Did this happen to you in the early paths? I mean did interest and enthusiasm sometimes not even arise to explore certain things. I find it a very strange occurence as the Nick before Path would have been all WOW!!! and getting all excited. Now all these jhanas feel mundane and not so special. Which kind of means I don't have this desire to develop them. I almost have to force myself with a resolution to stay in them. Weird!

Yeh, I understand you guys have gone head to head as good friends for years so no worries there. It is actually quite nice to see that two arahats disagree about things. It's refreshingly human.


Daniel M. Ingram:


So, again, if I get this straight, the setup for this is to get close to a fruition, decide to not get it and then to incline the mind to this state you are describing?

.



That's right. The fruition is postponed but the sensations/energy at the crown that come directly before it are manipulated or used as the object I guess of this new jhana-like state. It's worth also mentioning that awouldbehipster stated that he entered this state observing the navel area if I remember correctly whereas I focus on the crown. So this pre-fruition energy/sensations are taken as the object and absorb the mind into it, and it gets stronger, stiller, calmer, and more absorbed when a fruition occurs.


Daniel M. Ingram:



There are so many interesting directions to go from that place just before a fruition. That is where many high jhanas, pure-land territory, NS if the setup before it was right, The Witness, and others can be accessed if one has the talent and inclination. It is a broadly flexible launching point.


Well it is funny you mentioned the pureland jhanas because I seem to be able to access a number of jhanas that seem to correspond to the pure abodes. I consider myself, with still some doubt, to be on the 2nd path (This state of being is so different to 1st path it's not funny. The "I" is less sticky for sure and the mind more spacious). Anyway, whatever I am, I don't consider myself 3rd path and according to Kenneth, only anagami and above have that access. I am accessing something extremely blissful and different from the other 8 jhanas which pale in comparison to the bliss and peace that these new absorbtions offer. I feel kind of reluctant to even admit this now as I feel like I may be accessing something I am not supposed to. Or maybe I am accessing something related to this strange absorbtion we've been talking about. Things seem to come too easily these days that it is starting to make me too curious about why it is so.

One more thing, generating metta right after coming out of this absorbtion as well as the other number of blissful absorbtions after the 8th, is extremely effective and ideal. The waves of bliss are seemingly longer lasting than right after a normal fruition
And it is much esier to feel like you are sending beings all these good vibes.
thumbnail
Daniel M. Ingram, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 3166 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Well, all interesting and hopefully will inspire many.

I am intrigued.

It is interesting how many arguments go on about anagami territory and criteria:

Kenneth advocates pure land jhanas as irrefutable marks of that territory.

I prefer a gradual development of seeing centerlessness, luminosity, emptiness, or whatever you want to call it in real-time as a living experience more and more of the time.

Both of us agree on Nirodha Samapatti, I think, as anagami criteria, though we disagree about jhanic arc stuff...

I think it is somewhat related to one's expectations, ideals, and focus, as things get pretty malleable at that end of things and much can be conjured up just because that is what one thinks is supposed to be there.

Curiously, I got NS long before I began running into pure land jhanas, probably as that was what I was going for and those were the resolutions I made and instructions I followed.

Anyway, whatever you are experiencing is obviously what you are experiencing, regardless of any wazoos' banter about it, such as mine or anyone else's, so don't take all this too seriously.

While we all seem to claim that we know exactly when someone should be able to do something and that we have mapped out every possible strata of mind, the simple fact is that not everything always fits perfectly into our dogmas, and that is very important to keep in mind. To quote myself, in MCTB, regarding this sort of thing, "What a heap of reductionist dogma, false certainty, pretentiousness and my own neurotic stuff."

Anyway, please let us know how your conclusions about all this stuff change with time and further experience, as these sorts of accounts lend data points to the ongoing process of figuring out the wide range of individual variation on who can do what when and what they think it is best to call it.

Nice descriptions.
Dan K, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: Nirodha Sampatti VS Phala Samapatti. Is there a difference?

Posts: 33 Join Date: 5/15/10 Recent Posts
It's been a few months since OP, but I'm just going through it for the first time and I have some possibly useful comments.

In case it is not obvious, the following is theoretical.

Cessation is happening constantly everywhere in every instant. It feels good and the mind is drawn to it. I have found that there is a sort of energy gradient between sensations and their cessation which, when harnessed, can do work. Think of a waterwheel. I do a lot of meditation with attention to waves of cessation. So do many people I suspect, but experienced as waves of pleasantness. "Fruition", as I understand it, is commonly used to describe a particularly intense bout of cessation which happens to people who have attained one or more paths according to the Theravada model. Think of it as a big energy differential, and imagine a turbine or something which could utilize its energy. It sounds to me like Nikolai has learned to stabilize the energy differential of fruition and to harness the energy to do whatever.

Breadcrumb