Compendium of Phenomena

2.1 Arising of Mind

2.1.5. Supermundane Consciousness

1. The First Path

1. Rapt Meditation

The Four Modes of Progress in Purification

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the supermundane Jhāna (the rapt meditation), whereby there is a going forth and onward, making for the undoing of rebirth— and when, that he may attain to the First Stage, he has put away views and opinions and so, aloof from sensuous appetites, aloof from evil ideas, enters into and abides in the First Jhāna, wherein conception works and thought discursive, which is born of solitude, is full of joy and ease, progress thereto being difficult and intuition sluggish—then there is

  • contact,
  • feeling,
  • perception,
  • thinking,
  • thought,
  • conception,
  • discursive thought,
  • joy,
  • ease,
  • self-collectedness,
  • the faculties of faith,
  • energy,
  • mindfulness,
  • concentration,
  • wisdom,
  • ideation,
  • happiness,
  • vitality,
  • and the faculty of believing, “I shall come to know the unknown”,
  • right views,
  • right intention,
  • right speech,
  • right action,
  • right livelihood,
  • right endeavour,
  • right mindfulness,
  • right concentration;
  • the powers of faith,
  • energy,
  • mindfulness,
  • concentration,
  • wisdom,
  • conscientiousness,
  • the fear of blame;
  • the absence of lust,
  • hate,
  • dullness,
  • covetousness and malice,
  • right views,
  • conscientiousness,
  • the fear of blame,
  • serenity,
  • lightness,
  • plasticity,
  • facility,
  • fitness and directness in both sense and thought,
  • mindfulness,
  • intelligence,
  • quiet,
  • insight,
  • grasp and balance.

Now these—or whatever other incorporeal, causally induced states there are on that occasion—these are states that are good.

“Contact”, “feeling”, “perception”, “thinking”, and “thought” are described as in §§2–6.

What on that occasion is conception?

The ratiocination, the conception, which on that occasion is the disposition, the fixation, the focussing, the application of the mind, right intention, “Path-component”, “contained in the Path” —this is the conception that there then is.

“Discursive thought” is described as in §8.

What on that occasion is joy?

The joy which on that occasion is gladness, rejoicing at, rejoicing over, mirth, merriment, felicity, exultation, transport of heart, the joy which is a factor in the Great Awakening —this is the joy that there then is.

"Ease” is described as in §10.

What on that occasion is self-collectedness?

The stability, solidity, absorbed steadfastness of thought which on that occasion is the absence of distraction, balance, imperturbed mental procedure, quiet, the faculty and the power of concentration, right concentration, the concentration which is a factor in the Great Awakening, a “Path-component”, “contained in the Path”—this is the self-collectedness that there then is.

"Faith” is described as in §12.

What on that occasion is the faculty of energy?

The mental inception of energy which there is on that occasion, the striving and the onward effort, the exertion and endeavour, the zeal and ardour, the vigour and fortitude, the state of unfaltering effort, the state of sustained desire, the state of unflinching endurance, the solid grip of the burden, energy, energy as faculty and as power, right energy, the energy which is a factor in the Great Awakening, a Path-component, contained in the Path—this is the energy that there then is.

What on that occasion is the faculty of mindfulness?

The mindfulness which on that occasion is recollecting, calling back to mind the mindfulness which is remembering, bearing in mind, the opposite of superficiality and of obliviousness; mindfulness, mindfulness as faculty and as power, right mindfulness, the mindfulness which is a factor in the Great Awakening, a Path-component, contained in the Path—this is the mindfulness that there then is.

“Concentration” is described in the same terms as “self-collectedness”, §287.

What on that occasion is the faculty of wisdom?

The wisdom which there is on that occasion is understanding, search, research, searching the Truth, discernment, discrimination, differentiation, erudition, proficiency, subtlety, criticism, reflection, analysis, breadth, sagacity, leading, insight, intelligence, incitement, wisdom as faculty and as power, wisdom as a sword, as a height, as light, as glory, as splendour, as a precious stone; the absence of dullness, searching the Truth, right views, that searching the Truth which is a factor in the Great Awakening, a Path-component, contained in the Path—this is the wisdom that there then is.

The faculties of “ideation”, “happiness”, and “vitality” are described as in §§17–19.

What on that occasion is the faculty of believing, “I shall come to know the unknown”?

The wisdom that makes for the realization of those Truths that are unrealized, uncomprehended, unattained to, undiscerned, unknown—the wisdom that is understanding, search, research, searching the Truth, etc.

Continue as in §292.

What on that occasion are right views?

Answer as for “wisdom”, §292.

“Right intention” is described in the same terms as “conception”, §283.

What on that occasion is right speech?

To renounce on that occasion, abstain and refrain from, and feel averse to, the four errors of speech, to leave them uncommitted and undone, to incur no guilt, nor to trespass nor transgress with respect to them, to destroy the causeway leading to them—right speech, a Path-component, contained in the Path—this is the right speech that there then is.

What on that occasion is right action?

To renounce on that occasion, abstain and refrain from, and feel averse to, the three errors of conduct, to leave them uncommitted and undone, to incur no guilt, nor to trespass nor transgress with respect to them, to destroy the causeway leading to them—right conduct, a Path-component, contained in the Path—this is the right conduct that there then is.

What on that occasion is right livelihood?

To renounce on that occasion, abstain and refrain from, and feel averse to, wrong modes of livelihood, to leave them unpractised and undone, to incur no guilt, nor to trespass nor transgress with respect to them, to destroy the causeway leading to them—right livelihood, a Path-component, contained in the Path—this is the right livelihood that there then is.

"Eight endeavour”, “right mindfulness”, “right concentration”, are described as in §§289–291.

The “powers” of “faith”, “energy”, “mindfulness”, “concentration” and “wisdom” are described as in §§288–292; those of “conscientiousness” and “the fear of blame” as in §§30, 31.

"The absence of lust” and “the absence of hate” are described as in §§32, 33; “the absence of dullness” as in §309 ("wisdom”); “the absence of covetousness” and “the absence of malice” are described as in §§35, 36; “conscientiousness” and “the fear of blame” as in §§38, 39; “right views” as in §292 or 309 ("wisdom”).

What on that occasion is serenity of sense?

The serenity, the composure which there is on that occasion, the calming, the tranquillizing, the tranquillity of the skandhas of feeling, perception and syntheses, the serenity which is a factor in the Great Awakening—this is the serenity of sense that there then is.

What on that occasion is serenity of thought?

The serenity, the composure which there is on that occasion, the calming, the tranquillizing, the tranquillity of the skandha of intellect, the serenity which is a factor in the Great Awakening—this is the serenity of thought that there then is.

The remaining five attributes characterizing both sense and thought “on that occasion":—"buoyancy”, “plasticity”, etc.—are described as in §§42–51.

"Mindfulness”, “intelligence”, “quiet”, “insight”, “grasp” and “balance” are described as in §§290, 292 ("wisdom”), 291, 292, 289 ("energy”) and 291 respectively.

These, or whatever other incorporeal, causally induced states there are on that occasion—these are states that are good.

Summary

Now at that time

  • the skandhas are four,
  • the spheres are two,
  • the elements are two,
  • the nutriments are three,
  • the faculties are nine,
  • the Jhāna is fivefold,
  • the Path is eightfold,
  • the powers are seven,
  • the causes are three,
  • contact,
  • feeling,
  • perception,
  • thinking,
  • thought,

are each single [factors];

  • the skandhas of feeling,
  • perception,
  • syntheses,
  • intellect,

are each single [factors];

  • the sphere of ideation,
  • the faculty of ideation,
  • the element of representative intellection,
  • the sphere of a [representative] state,
  • the element of a [representative] state.

are each single [factors].

These, or whatever other incorporeal, causally induced states there are on that occasion—these are states that are good.

[Here the questions and answers concerning the first two, of the four skandhas enumerated are to be understood to follow as in §§59–61.]

What on that occasion is the skandha of syntheses?

  • Contact,
  • thinking,
  • conception,
  • discursive thought,
  • joy,
  • self-collectedness,

the faculties of

  • faith,
  • concentration,
  • energy,
  • wisdom,
  • mindfulness,
  • vitality,
  • believing “I shall come to know the unknown”;
  • right views,
  • right livelihood,
  • right intention,
  • right endeavour,
  • right speech,
  • right mindfulness,
  • right action,
  • right concentration;
  • the seven powers;
  • the absence of lust,
  • hate and dullness;
  • the absence of covetousness and malice,
  • the fear of blame;
  • right views;
  • conscientiousness,
  • serenity,
  • wieldiness,
  • buoyancy,
  • fitness,
  • plasticity,
  • directness of sense and thought;
  • mindfulness and intelligence;
  • quiet and insight;
  • grasp and balance.

These, or whatever other incorporeal, causally induced states there are on that occasion, exclusive of the skandhas of feeling, perception and intellect—these are the skandha of syntheses.

Questions on the remaining items in the “Summary” are understood to follow.

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane (the rapt meditation), whereby there is a going forth and onward, making for the undoing of rebirth—and when, that he may attain to the First Stage, he has put away views and opinions, and so, aloof from sensuous appetites, aloof from evil ideas, enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … progress thereto being difficult, but intuition quick …

[or] … progress thereto being easy, but intuition sluggish …

[or] … progress thereto being easy and intuition quick—then the contact … the balance that arises—these … are states that are good.

Repeat the Four Modes in the case of the 2nd to the 4th Jhāna on the Fourfold System, and of the 1st to the 5th Jhāna on the Fivefold System.

Here end the Modes of Progress in Purification.

2. The Section on Emptiness

(a) and (b)

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane (the rapt meditation), whereby there is a going forth and onward, making for the undoing of rebirth—and when, that he may attain to the First Stage, he has put away views and opinions, and so, aloof from sensuous appetites, aloof from evil ideas, enters into and abides in the First Jhāna, wherein conception works and thought discursive, which is born of solitude, is full of joy and ease, and which is Empty—then the contact … the balance that arises—these … are states that are good.

Repeat the 2nd to the 4th Jhānas on the Fourfold System, and the 1st to the 5th on the Fivefold System, with the addition in each case of the phrase “and which is Empty”.

[Here ends] the “Emptiness” Section.

(c) The Modes of Progress, with “Emptiness” as the Basis

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane … and when, that he may attain to the First Stage, he … enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … progress thereto being difficult and intuition sluggish, the method being the concept of Emptiness—then the contact … the balance that arises—these … are states that are good.

Repeat the same formula, substituting in succession the three remaining Modes of Progress (§§176–179), with the addition in each case of the plirase “the method being the concept of Emptiness”.

Repeat the same formula, substituting in succession the remaining Jhānas on the Fourfold System and those on the Fivefold System, and applying in each case the Four Modes of Progress, with the additional phrase on “Emptiness”.

(ii.) The Aimless (appanihitaṃ) .

(a) and (b)

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane … and when, that he may attain to the First Stage, he … enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … which is born of solitude, is full of joy and ease, and which is Aimless—then the contact … the balance that arises—these … are states that are good.

Repeat the same formula, substituting the remaining three, and the five Jhānas in succession, with the addition in each case of the phrase “and which is Aimless”.

(c) The Modes of Progress, with Aimlessness as the Basis

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane … and when, that he may attain to the First Stage of it, he … enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … progress whereto is difficult and intuition sluggish, the method being the concept of Aimlessness—then the contact … the balance that arises—these … are states that are good.

Repeat the same formula, substituting in succession the three remaining Modes of Progress, with the addition in each case of the phrase “the method being the concept of Aimlessness”.

Repeat the same formula, substituting in succession the remaining three, and the five Jhānas, and applying in each case the Four Modes of Progress, with the additional phrase on “Aimlessness”.

The Twenty Great Methods.

Which are the states that are good?

Here follow nineteen concepts, each of which can be substituted for “the Jhāna of the Supermundane” in the preceding 81 answers [§§277–357], as a vehicle in training the mind for Arahatship. They are as follows:

  1. The Path of the Supermundane.
  2. The Advance in Mindfulness toward the Supermundane.
  3. The System of Eight Efforts toward the Supermundane.
  4. The Series of Mystic Potencies applied to the Supermundane.
  5. The Faculty relating to the Supermundane.
  6. The Power relating to the Supermundane.
  7. The Great Awakening to the Supermundane.
  8. The Truth of the Supermundane.
  9. The Peace of the Supermundane.
  10. The Doctrine of the Supermundane.
  11. The Skandha related to the Supermundane.
  12. The Sphere of the Supermundane.
  13. The Element of the Supermundane.
  14. The Nutriment of the Supermundane.
  15. Contact with the Supermundane.
  16. Feeling relating to the Supermundane.
  17. Perception relating to the Supermundane.
  18. Thinking relating to the Supermundane.
  19. Thought relating to the Supermundane.

The Dominant Influences in the Modes of Progress

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane … and when, that he may attain to the First Stage, he … enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … progress whereto is painful and intuition sluggish, and the dominant influence in which is desire, energy, a thought, or investigation, then the contact … the balance that arises—these are states that are good.

Repeat this formula in the case of the remaining three and five Jhānas.

Repeat the foregoing [§§359, 360] in the case of each of the nineteen remaining “Great Methods”.

Here ends the Fourfold System of Jhāna.

2. The Second Path

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane (the rapt meditation), whereby there is a going forth and onward, making for the undoing of rebirth—and when, that he may attain to the Second Stage, he has diminished the strength of sensual passions and of malice, and so, aloof from sensuous appetites, aloof from evil ideas, enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … progress whereto is difficult and intuition sluggish—then the contact … the faculty of knowledge made perfect … the balance that arises—these … are states that are good.

Here ends the Fourfold System of Jhāna.

3. The Third Path

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane (the rapt meditation), whereby there is a going forth and onward, making for the undoing of rebirth—and when, that he may attain to the Third Stage, he has put away the entire residuum of sensual passions and of malice, and so, aloof from sensuous appetites, aloof from evil ideas, enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … progress whereto is difficult and intuition sluggish—then the contact … the faculty of knowledge made perfect … the balance that arises—these … states that are good.

Here ends the Fourfold System of Jhāna.

4. The Fourth Path

Which are the states that are good?

When he cultivates the Jhāna of the Supermundane (the rapt meditation), whereby there is a going forth and onward, making for the undoing of rebirth, and when, that he may attain the Fourth Stage, he has put away absolutely and entirely all passion for Form, all passion for the Formless, all conceit, excitement and ignorance, and so, aloof from sensuous appetites, aloof from evil ideas, enters into and abides in the First Jhāna … progress whereto is difficult and intuition sluggish—then the contact … the faculty of knowledge made perfect … the balance that arises—these … are states that are good.

What on that occasion is the faculty of knowledge made perfect?

The wisdom that makes for the realization of those truths that have been realized, comprehended, attained to, discerned and known—the wisdom that is understanding, search, research, searching the Truth, etc.

Continue as in §292.

These, or whatever other incorporeal, causally induced states there are on that occasion, these are states that are good.

Here ends the Fourfold System of Jhāna.