Author Topic: The Seven Factors for Awakening  (Read 1867 times)

Alexander

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The Seven Factors for Awakening
« on: September 25, 2014, 04:30:45 PM »
"And how are the seven factors for awakening developed & pursued so as to bring clear knowing & release to their culmination? There is the case where a monk develops mindfulness as a factor for awakening dependent on seclusion, dependent on dispassion, dependent on cessation, resulting in relinquishment. He develops analysis of qualities as a factor for awakening... persistence as a factor for awakening... rapture as a factor for awakening... serenity as a factor for awakening... concentration as a factor for awakening... equanimity as a factor for awakening dependent on seclusion, dependent on dispassion, dependent on cessation, resulting in relinquishment.

"This is how the seven factors for awakening are developed & pursued so as to bring clear knowing & release to their culmination."


Is the implication that the seven factors are developed consequentially or concurrently?

Thank you.

Spiny Norman

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Re: The Seven Factors for Awakening
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2014, 07:32:05 PM »
Is the implication that the seven factors are developed consequentially or concurrently?

The Aggi Sutta says that different factors should be cultivated at different times, dependent on mind state.  This suggests that the factors can be developed concurrently:  http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn46/sn46.053.wlsh.html

Also see SN46.2(ii) which describes a specific set of nutriments for each enlightenment factor.  This doesn't look like a sequential sequence as in dependent origination, where each factor arises in dependence on the preceding one, so again this supports the view of the factors being developed concurrently: http://suttacentral.net/en/sn46.2

As for the practical side, this might be worth a look: http://www.amaravati.org/downloads/pdf/Contemplations%20on%20the%20Seven%20Factors%20of%20Awakening%20-%20Ajahn%20Thiradhammo.pdf

Hope that helps.  It's quite a big topic really!
« Last Edit: September 25, 2014, 08:46:02 PM by Spiny Norman »

Nicky

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Re: The Seven Factors for Awakening
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2014, 01:32:25 PM »

The Aggi Sutta says that different factors should be cultivated at different times, dependent on mind state.  This suggests that the factors can be developed concurrently:  http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn46/sn46.053.wlsh.html

Also see SN46.2(ii) which describes a specific set of nutriments for each enlightenment factor.  This doesn't look like a sequential sequence as in dependent origination, where each factor arises in dependence on the preceding one, so again this supports the view of the factors being developed concurrently: http://suttacentral.net/en/sn46.2

Hope that helps.  It's quite a big topic really!

For me, not particularly helpful. The Aggi Sutta is not about stream-entry but about struggles. SN 46.2 merely states to frequently giving careful attention to them.

 :-[

« Last Edit: September 26, 2014, 01:41:48 PM by Nicky »

Nicky

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Re: The Seven Factors for Awakening
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2014, 01:40:16 PM »

Is the implication that the seven factors are developed consequentially or concurrently?

It is important to keep in mind the following principle:

Quote
"It's not easy to teach the Dhamma to others, Ananda. The Dhamma should be taught to others only when five qualities are established within the person teaching. Which five?

"[1] The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, 'I will speak step-by-step.'

"[2] The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, 'I will speak explaining the sequence [of cause & effect].'

"[3] The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, 'I will speak out of compassion.'

"[4] The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, 'I will speak not for the purpose of material reward.'

"[5] The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, 'I will speak without disparaging myself or others.'

"It's not easy to teach the Dhamma to others, Ananda. The Dhamma should be taught to others only when these five qualities are established within the person teaching."

— AN 5.159

All genuine dhamma about path fruition is taught in proper sequence, which is why the 7 factors are developed with the later dependent on the former (consequentially), as clearly described below: 

Quote
THE SEVEN FACTORS OF AWAKENING (Bojjhanga)

Bhikkhus, how do the four foundations of mindfulness that one has developed and made much of perfect the seven factors of awakening?

Bhikkhus, whenever a bhikkhu is one who lives constantly contemplating body in bodies 33... is one who lives constantly contem­plating feeling in feelings ... is one who lives constantly contemplating mind in the mind ... is one who lives constantly contemplating Dhamma in dhammas, strives to burn up defilements, comprehends readily, and is mindful, in order to abandon all liking and disliking toward the world; then the sati of that bhikkhu thus established is natural and unconfused.

Bhikkhus, whenever the sati of that bhikkhu thus established is natural and unconfused, then the mindfulness enlightenment factor  (sati-sambojjhanga) is engaged by that bhikkhu and he develops it further and finally its development in him is perfected. That bhikkhu when mindful in such a way selects, takes up, and scrutinizes these dhammas with wisdom.     

Bhikkhus, whenever a bhikkhu is mindful in such a way, selects, takes up, and scrutinizes these dhammas with wisdom; then the investigation of dhammas factor of awakening (dhammavicaya sambojjhanga) is engaged by that bhikkhu and he develops it further and finally its development in him is perfected. When that bhikkhu selects, takes up, and scrutinizes these dhammas with wisdom, un­wavering energy is engaged by him.

Bhikkhus, whenever unwavering energy is engaged by a bhikkhu who selects, takes up, and scrutinizes these dhammas with wisdom; then the energy factor of awakening (viriya-sambojjhanga) is engaged by him and he develops it further and its development in him is perfected. When energy is engaged by that bhikkhu, non-sensual piti arises.       

Bhikkhus, whenever non-sensual piti arises in the bhikkhu who has engaged energy, then the contentment factor of awakening  (piti-sambojjhanga) is engaged by that bhikkhu and he develops it further and its development in him is perfected. When that bhikkhu's mind is contented both body is calmed and mind is calmed.

Bhikkhus, whenever both the body and the mind of a bhikkhu who is contented are calm, then the tranquility factor of awakening  (passaddhi-sambojjhanga) is engaged by him and he develops it further and its development in him is perfected. When that bhikkhu's body is calmed there is joy and the mind becomes concentrated

Bhikkhus, whenever the mind of a bhikkhu whose body is calmed and who is joyful becomes concentrated, then the concentration factor of  awakening (samadhi-sambojjhanga) is engaged by that bhikkhu and he develops it further and its development in him is perfected. That bhikkhu looks upon that concentrated mind with perfect equanimity

Bhikkhus, whenever a bhikkhu looks upon that concentrated mind with perfect equanimity, then the equanimity factor of awak­ening  upekkha-sambojjhanga) is engaged by that bhikkhu and he develops it further and its development in him is perfected. 

Bhikkhus, this is how the four foundations of mindfulness that one has developed and made much of perfect the seven factors of awakening.

MN 118


 :)
« Last Edit: September 26, 2014, 01:54:37 PM by Nicky »

Spiny Norman

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Re: The Seven Factors for Awakening
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2014, 12:41:26 PM »

Hope that helps.  It's quite a big topic really!

For me, not particularly helpful.

I didn't find your input particularly helpful either.  Anyway I don't think it would help the OP to start a technical sutta debate here, and I believe the emphasis in this forum is rightly on practice rather than academic debate.  That's why I ended my initial response with this suggestion: http://www.amaravati.org/downloads/pdf/Contemplations%20on%20the%20Seven%20Factors%20of%20Awakening%20-%20Ajahn%20Thiradhammo.pdf
« Last Edit: September 27, 2014, 12:58:54 PM by Spiny Norman »

Nicky

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Re: The Seven Factors for Awakening
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2014, 11:03:48 PM »

I didn't find your input particularly helpful either. 

Of course not. How could the fruition of stream-entry be helpful to puthujjana?

The quote I posted is from the Anapanasati Sutta & describes the fruition of stream-entry practise.

Where as the quote you posted is about puthujjana trying to overcome hindrances (kilesa), which is not really 'practise'.

Horses for courses, it seems.

For dirt/pollution (kilesa; defilement), water is for cleaning. For a tree, water is for growth. For a stream, water is for flowing to the ocean (of Nibbana). Water, like Dhamma, can be used for many purposes. Even Mara takes an interest in Dhamma & uses it for his (Mara's) purposes.  :-*
« Last Edit: September 27, 2014, 11:10:11 PM by Nicky »

 

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