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了悟平常心:三禅 Normality : the third Jhana

导读:Part 2: Walking The Path 第2篇:行道2-3. Stages of Practice 修学阶段  2-3-4. WORKING WITH THE MIND第二阶段:对治自心修习阶段 (或看念头(心)修习阶段)  2-3-4-3. Normality : the third Jhana 了悟平常心:三禅  (This talk was given the next day a...

  Part 2: Walking The Path 第2篇:行道

  2-3. Stages of Practice 修学阶段

  2-3-4. WORKING WITH THE MIND第二阶段:对治自心修习阶段 (或看念头(心)修习阶段)

  2-3-4-3. Normality : the third Jhana 了悟平常心:三禅

  (This talk was given the next day and continues with the fore-going. 这段是隔天才开示的,并且继续前面的话题。)


  When I knew Rupa-Nama and the objects of Rupa-Nama fully, I still didn't know the defilements due to Vipassana, nor did I know analytical knowledge, nor abnormal views. But when I returned to looking at the mind and awareness was strong and fast enough to keep up with it, being able to prevent and deal with it, a change took place in my mind twice. That's why I understood the value of the beginning stages of enlightenment and I understood the defilements due to Vipassana. But analytical knowledge and abnormal views, I didn't know yet, I understood that afterwards.


  The path is the practice to reach the end of suffering. I understood suffering - the cause of it - the extinguishing of it - the path, as the genuine characteristics of the 4 Noble truths. Suffering or Dukkha, as I understand it from my practice is thought ; first we understand the bark of it, then the very thinking itself that is the origin of suffering. The path of practice is to watch thought with awareness, when watching like this, the result is that one breaks away from it, one frees oneself from suffering ; the end of suffering is Nirodha. The extinguishment of suffering has to be realized, said the Buddha. When one is free from it, one realizes it, this is called realizing, really knowing, that's Nirodha. One might wonder how to practice. The answer is : build up awareness and then watch thought, this is the path which means the practice that leads to the end of suffering.


  I know the source of it, the knowledge came step by step. It is like putting water in a cup and we pour some out ; there remains only little water, when the water decreases we add more to it, then it decreases again and we keep topping it up often. Or it's like rain ; the rain-water dries up and then it rains again. This a way of talking but the way of practicing is to build up Sati ; stay alone, don't talk and chat but build up lots of awareness and it will burst into flames, so to speak.


  The day that I understood, I understood greed, hatred and delusion and was able to destroy them and I understood the 4 objective forms, namely : feeling, perception, volitional thought and conciousness, they're also called Nama-Rupa. Dosa, Moha and Lobha don't exist, Nama-Rupa does exist but there is no suffering in them. After that, I understood defilement - craving - clinging - Kamma ; the mind changed a second time and clinging was destroyed. This was in the evening ; I continued to do walking-meditation and practice the rhytmic-meditation, when it was time, I went to sleep.



  Before dawn, as I was pacing up and down, a centipede passed in front of me. There was no light there, only candles at intervals of the path for walking-meditation. I took a candle and looked around but the centipede had disappeared already. A long time ago, I was bitten by one once ; I remember : it hurt. When I didn't see it, I continued to walk and look at my thoughts. At that instant a thought flashed up, I knew the thought and understood what virtue is. The word virtue means normality, it is not the 5, 8 or 227 precepts, that I used to observe since I was young. But now I understood that virtue is the means to eliminate the gross defilements, concentration is the means to eliminate the medium defilements and wisdom is the means to eliminate subtle defilements. That's what it says in the scriptures and now I understood because I had eliminated the coarse defilements and virtue was perfected. In fact, perfected virtue is what concentration and wisdom is.



  Let's have a look at the aggregate of virtue, the aggregate of concentration and the aggregate of wisdom. The word 'aggregate' means intensive, means to support, means in good order, means to strive, means to melt. At that time, my wife had given me some cloth, good cloth that can be used to wear or spread out to sleep on. This cloth is heavy and tightly woven, so I bring this up for comparison ; when cloth is tightly woven, it is good quality cloth. When I understood this well, I comprehended the higher training in virtue, the higher training of the mind and the higher training in wisdom. This is what it says in the scriptures but what appeared was the aggregate of virtue, the aggregate of concentration and the aggregate of wisdom, I understand it like this.



  Next, I understood that concentration is the means to eliminate medium defilements ; at this point, I comprehended tranquility-meditation. The kind of meditation where they sit until all stiff, my view is that that is not the teaching of the Buddha. But it's good, not that it's bad ; it's better than doing evil, making merit is better than doing evil ; have some merit first, don't take evil ; take what is good, don't take what is bad ; this is good on one level. But it's still not getting close to the real Buddha.


  When eating, we have to eat cooked rice, uncooked rice is not eatable ; making merit, giving offerings, keeping precepts and practicing tranquility-meditation compares with uncooked rice.


  If one asks : 'Can one do insight-meditation without having made merit, having been generous, having kept precepts and having practiced calming-meditation before ?' , I can assure you that it is possible indeed. But one should completely stop doing evil and build up and develop awareness a lot ; this will make you understand, really understand ; having understood, it becomes natural. The kind of peace of the Buddha, is peace through awareness & wisdom. Peace because of the abcence of greed, hatred and delusion, peace because of the lack of clinging, peace because there is no more not-knowing. The peace of the Buddha is like going against the stream, the stream of thought, until one sees the source and origin of thought. The tray that floats against the stream of the water is like the aggregates going against the stream of thought. How does one go against it ? When you reflect on it, you might see that when the eye sees forms, the ear hears sounds etc. the eye and ear don't know anything, but the mind is the one who knows ; so look at the mind. Conciousness is the one who knows. Conciousness translates as knowing. Conciousness here, is not what many people believe it to be ; that when one dies, conciousness is what takes rebirth here or there. I used to think like that, but now I know that it' s not like that.


  Just look at the difference between those thoughts and wisdom. There is a change from the old way of thinking, this knowledge is not the same as it was before. Let me give an example : when the eyes see the opposite sex, it stimulates the mind, but when I knew the origin of thought in the mind, there is no stimulation. This is going against the stream, the 5 aggregates go against the stream of thought. The Buddha teaches not to let the 6 internal senses, that is, the eye, the ear, the nose, the tongue, the body and the mind, join the 6 external senses, namely forms, sounds, smell, taste, touch and mental phenomena. On seeing, let there just be seeing, don't call it good or bad or whatever. These are still the words from the scriptures, they still have glue in them so they are defilements. Defilements are like sticky glue. Craving means wanting, when we want things we are stuck fast by the glue and being stuck, we go and carry things around, that is what clinging is. This happens by itself but if we go against the stream as I've explained, one can reach the end of suffering. Therefore, may you all determine to really practice so you really know and when you know you will be sure about the teachings of the Buddha.



  When I had concentration it eliminated the medium defilements. I knew this after they were eliminated, it was the same with the defiiements due to insight: after I was free from them, I knew it. On being free from analytical knowledge, I knew it. And it's the same with abnormal views : after being free from them, I knew. Only after eliminating the coarse defilements, did I know the coarse defilements. Virtue is the means to eliminate coarse defilements, the coarse defilements are greed, hatred, delusion, defilernents, craving, clinging and Kamma. Having eliminated the medium defilements, I knew what they are. The medium defilements are to be attached to peacefulness. That's why I say that there are 2 kinds of peace : one kind is to sit with the eyes closed and have visions ; that is like the 2 hermits in the time of the Buddha ; one doesn't see one's own mind, it is temporarily peace, one still has suffering because of Lobha, Dosa, Moha, it is called peace under the influence of delusion. It is peace because one doesn't know or doesn't want to know.


  Another kind of peace, is the peace of the Buddha ; peace due to the abcence of greed, hatred and delusion, peace due to the abcence of clinging etc. One is peaceful because one knows, it is called peace because of awareness and wisdom. This kind of peace is the concentration that eliminates the medium defilements, I would like to insist that I really know this. The kind of peace of those 2 hermits in the time of the Buddha are still under the power of sensuality, are still under the power of being, are still under the power of ignorance ; it is called the canker of sensuality, the canker of being and the canker of ignorance. Sensuality here, means gladness ; one is glad about being in some state or being identified with something because one doesn't know, one is under the power of sensuality, being and ignorance. As for sensuality ; no need to talk about it it's too gross. I comprehended this ; first we just know from memory and then we comprehend, realize and really know, this is the same for all people. Developing awareness is therefore a shaking-up of the knowing-element of that individual, which already exists in everybody without exception, there is no point in lying. When I knew this I was not diffident. At this time, my mind changed for the third time, that is, there was a shift twice in the evening. In the early morning, there were two more transformations ; the mind became two levels lighter, not sticking to anything.


  By practicing in this way, I understood the teachings of the Buddha concerning the lst, 2nd and 3rd Jhana. Talking like this, I might get blamed of claiming superhuman attainments, but I'd like to insist that I'm explaining this backed up by reason. If one desires to know the truth, it is necessary to speak the truth ; if one doesn't speak the truth or talks about things that one hasn't realized for oneself, it is making false claims or lying. What's the use of that ? Better to speak honestly !


  The kind of knowledge, like seeing light, colours, ghosts, angels etc. that some people have, I don't know. That is illusion and deception, but people call those things visions. A vision or sign is a mark. What does it mark ? It marks to catch that point with awareness, that's the real sign ! On the profound level, it means to watch this very mind with awareness. Mark this well, don't let go of it ! Keep gazing at the mind, do it like a cat does with a mouse or like a boxer : whoever he meets gets whacked ; this means a thought pops up and whack, it is cut straight away.


  Abandoning greed, hatred and delusion through formal sitting-meditation, doesn't agree with the principles of the right way to develop awareness ; it compares to sitting in a cave and lighting a candle : it is true that there is some light, but only inside the cave. There is only light on one side ; other sides are still in the dark. Put the candle behind you and it's dark in front, when the candle is on the left, the darkness goes to the right, put the light on your right and there is darkness on your left ; the darkness circles around one like this and as soon as the light goes out, it is immediately totally dark. So one still doesn't really know how to abandon Lobha, Dosa and Moha.