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A Critical Analysis of the Jhãnas: in Theravãda Buddhist Meditation
作者 Henepola Gunaratana
出版日期1980
頁次442
出版者The American University
出版者網址 http://www.american.edu/
出版地Washington, DC, US [華盛頓, 哥倫比亞特區, 美國]
資料類型博碩士論文=Thesis and Dissertation
使用語言英文=English
學位類別博士
校院名稱American University
系所名稱College of Arts and Science
畢業年度1980
關鍵詞上座部佛教=南傳佛教=Theravada Buddhism; 尸羅=戒=command=Precept=sila=morality=rule=discipline=prohibition; 佛教人物=Buddhist; 度母=Tara; 涅槃=Parinibbana=Nibbana=Nirvana; 靜坐=Meditation; 禪定=Concentration=Dhyana; 禪修=Meditation; 禪修者=Meditator; 轉世=輪迴=Samsara=Rebirth=Reincarnation
摘要This work, by Ven. Henepola Gunaratana, provides an analytical study of the Jhãnas, as they are an important set of meditative attainments in the contemplative discipline of Theravãda Buddhism. Despite their frequent appearance in the texts, the exact role of the Jhãnas in the Buddhist path has not been settled with unanimity by Theravãda scholars, who are still divided over the question as to whether they are necessary for attaining Nibbana. The primary purpose of this dissertation is to determine the precise role of the Jhãnas in the Theravãda Buddhist presentation of the way to liberation.

For source material the work relies upon the three principal classes of authoritative Theravãda texts: the Pali Tipitaka, its commentaries, and its sub-commentaries. To traditional canonical investigations modern methods of philosophical and psychological analysis are applied in order to clarify the meanings implicit in the original sources. The examination covers two major areas: first the dynamics of Jhãna attainment, and second, the function of the Jhãnas in realizing the ultimate goal of Buddhism, Nibbana or final liberation from suffering.

The examination covers two major areas: first the dynamics of jhana attainment, and second, the function of the jhanas in realizing the ultimate goal of Buddhism, nibbana or final liberation from suffering.

Regarding the first issue it is shown that Theravada Buddhism treats the process of jhana attainment from a philosophical perspective which views the mind as a complex of factors alterable by methodical training. The eight attainments of jhana--four fine material jhanas and four immaterial jhanas--are examined individually in terms of their components and in their progressive scale of development. Also discussed are the supernormal powers of knowledge (abhinnas) resulting from jhana and the connections between the jhanas and rebirth.

Regarding the second issue, the work brings to light several significant findings concerning the soteriological function of the jhanas. Fundamental to the conclusions in this area is the discovery that the Theravada tradition distinguishes two kinds of jhana, one mundane (lokiya), the other supramundane (lokuttara). Mundane jhana, comprising the eight attainments, belongs to the concentration group of the threefold Buddhist discipline--morality, concentration, and wisdom. Supramundane jhana is the mental absorption immediately concomitant with the higher realizations called the supramundane paths and fruits, which issue from the full threefold discipline.

Theravada Buddhism regards the mundane jhana as neither sufficient nor indispensable for reaching liberation. They are insufficient as they only suppress the defilements and must be supplemented by wisdom. They are optional rather than indispensable since they need not be developed by all practitioners. Meditators belong to the "vehicle of serenity" utilize jhana to produce the concentration required as a basis for wisdom, meditators belonging to the "vehicle of bare insight" can employ a lower degree of concentration without achieving mundane jhana. But supramundane jhana pertains to the experience of all meditators who reach the paths and fruits, since these latter always occur in the level of jhanic absorption.

The dissertation also explains the two approaches to meditation and shows how they lead by stages to the higher realizations. The supramundane jhanas are examined analytically both in themselves and in comparison with their mundane counterparts. Also discussed are two additional attainments connected with the jhanas--fruition and cessation.

Finally, by means of a canonical sevenfold typology, the relation of the various grades of liberated individuals to the accomplishment of mundane jhana is investigated. The conclusion emerges that though liberation from suffering, the ultimate goal of the discipline, is attainable by wisdom with or without mundane jhana
目次Introduction
The Preliminaries to Pratice
The Conquest of the Hindrances
The First Jhana and its Factors
The Higher Jhanas
Beyond the Four Jhanas
The Way
of Wisdom
Jhana and the Noble Attainments
Conclusion
點閱次數1108
建檔日期2006.11.28
更新日期2016.05.11










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