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TOPIC: Jhanas, Ñanas, Bananas

Jhanas, Ñanas, Bananas 25 Mar 2019 05:48 #110972

Apologies for the title. :P
Ooh, but maybe it doesn't rhyme across the Atlantic.

Anyway, I have a question. I'm aware of these various maps, and have generally been cautious in using them to second guess my experience. But, I think I can confidently say that I've experienced things that appear to be all of the vipassana jhanas to a greater or lesser extent as described in MCTB in my sits, but never noticed the order described, and often I might not be sure at all which ñana I might be in at any given time, and generally choose not to give it too much thought. I'm becoming more certain that I have experienced some concentration jhana, but it's difficult to say to what extent, if at all, these happen intentionally. I am slightly concerned, that I should be able to, or it would be beneficial to be able to be clear about what happens in my sits, and concerned about avoiding second-guessing arises.

My question is that since things are often not clear in a typical mappable way, would it be beneficial to attempt to clarify this somehow, with my own map perhaps? Is the perceived lack of clarity a sign that it might be a good idea to work on something specific, e.g. the concentration jhanas for clarity (which I haven't really done), or simply more Insight?

I expect there is a spectrum of approaches, from serious map work to "just keep sitting"; if you think you know what might be best for me, that would be lovely, but I would also be interested in what different approaches there are. Thanks! :)
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Jhanas, Ñanas, Bananas 25 Mar 2019 07:30 #110973

Junglist, do you just want to know "where" you are on the Theravada maps or are you truly interested in creating your own personal map?
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Jhanas, Ñanas, Bananas 25 Mar 2019 07:54 #110974

Chris Marti wrote:
Junglist, do you just want to know "where" you are on the Theravada maps or are you truly interested in creating your own personal map?

Thanks Chris, without meaning to be awkward, both and neither, really.
I'd be interested in the first for the understanding I might gain from it and for the pointers it might give me for further exploration, and the second because it would come from my direct experience and therefore hopefully more truthful, although with a personal map I don't expect to be able to anticipate, with whatever pros and cons that may have. However, I'm unsure how constructive plotting myself against a map would be for me.

Basically my question revolves around me having a lack of clarity on the patterns and stages in my practice that maps seem to describe. I go through particular periods of being a certain way in daily life and on the cushion, but I sometimes wonder about the finer details things, and whether not having the same degree of clarity about them is a problem, and if so, what the best course of action to take would be.

Does that make any sense at all?? :unsure:
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The following user(s) said Thank You: Ona Kiser

Jhanas, Ñanas, Bananas 25 Mar 2019 08:42 #110976

Real quote from a visiting Theravadan monk, heard second hand: "Practice well, achieve nirvana! Consolation prize? Banana!"
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The following user(s) said Thank You: Junglist, Curious Malcolm

Jhanas, Ñanas, Bananas 26 Mar 2019 14:29 #110992

I think its only beneficial to the extent that it helps you demarcate more general improvements in practice (i.e. do you feel more surrendered & accepting of what is in each moment? are your concentration, clarity & equanimity increasing over time? is your psychoemotional health & behavioral discipline improving?) & motivates you to keep going. Also if you feel really shitty, it's good to understand why & act accordingly: mood, biochemistry, life events, dukkha nanas, etc.
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The following user(s) said Thank You: shargrol

Jhanas, Ñanas, Bananas 29 Mar 2019 04:45 #111002

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The following user(s) said Thank You: Chris Marti, shargrol, Kacchapa
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