Reply To: Examples of doing Anapana in sankappa, vaca, and kammanta.


upekkha asked:
“1) So should we also suppress thoughts that involve assada/kama raga(thoughts about food, music, beautiful sceneries, an attractive person)?

2) Do we need to suppress and Anapana assada/kama raga to get to Sotapanna stage?”

Both are not necessary.
– Kama raga is removed at the Anagami stage, as you said.

We can look at it the following way, by what is accomplished at each stage of Nibbana.

1. A Sotappana (Anugami) removes the possibility of rebirths in the apayas (where suffering is maximum). He/she does that by realizing that such births originate due to strong akusala kamma.
– Killing a human, for example, is done with extreme anger. Such a strong kamma could lead to rebirth in hell.
– Having excess greed is a “peta gati.” A peta is a hungry ghost who cannot satisfy hunger.
– Raping or extreme sexual misconduct is an “animal gati.” Such actions could lead to rebirth as an animal.
– Depending on others (when is one fully capable of earning a living) is an “asura gati.” Such a lifestyle could lead to rebirth in the asura realm.

That pattern of “rebirths due to gati” is explained in Paticca Samuppada.

2. One could live a moral life by not engaging in such extreme deeds, but as I have tried to explain in the recent posts, there may come a day when the temptation becomes so strong that one unable to “control oneself”.
– Even if one can get through this life not doing any of them, we do not know where the next birth is, even if reborn a human. If one is born to a “bad family”, then one could easily do such things.
– That is why it is also necessary to understand the “anicca nature” of this world. Again, that is what I will be going through the new series of posts.

3. Once you make some progress, you may feel that craving for sensual pleasures decreases to some extent.
– That will become permanent with the understanding of the anicca nature.
– Of course, getting rid of “normal cravings” for food, sex, etc will not be removed at the Sotapanna (Anugami) stage.
– a Sotapanna (Anugami) is incapable of doing only those deeds with “extreme greed” or “extreme anger” or “extreme ignorance (moha)” as mentioned above. I discussed that to some extent in the post published today.

Therefore, the bottom line is to make gradual improvements in the lifestyle, cultivate good thoughts and stop bad thoughts. At the same time, learning Dhamma is also critical.
– Those two things need to go together.