Jhana Or Vipassana On Retreat 2011

During this talk, Peter describes controversies and agreements about the role jhana practice has is cultivating vipassana practice.  He explains the progression from “acquiring the nimitta” (a noticeable sensation of touch or light arising from one-pointed concentration on the touch sensation at the nostrils) to the extraordinary state of mind called jhana.  The value of the increased mental acuity from jhana practice to the onset of vipassana practice was explained, compared to the advantages of beginning vipassana practice without first entering jhana (called “dry vipassana).

Awakening Joy

This dialogue describes piti (joy) and sukkha (happiness) as the result of increasing concentration, due to the setting aside of the hindrances.  Once the energy of consciousness isn’t “dumped” into the hindrances, the mind naturally becomes buoyant, resilient and interested in investigating what has arisen in awareness.  Rapture, a potent manifestation of joy, develops in stages as the mind moves into the extraordinary levels called jhana, which will be discussed the next few meetings.