Reply To: How long should one stay in Jhana?


The Buddha has provided a detailed account of jhanic experience in detail:
Jhānic Experience in Detail – Sāmañ­ña­phala Sutta (DN 2)

Each jhana has different levels: weak, medium, and strong. The descriptions are strong experiences.

– As one cultivates the fourth jhana, any feelings about the body will gradually fade away.
– Remember that each jhanic experience describes the experience of a Brahma in the corresponding Brahma realm.
– At the peak of the fourth jhana, one is about to enter the arupavacara jhana depicting arupavacara Brahmas. They have only the mind.
– Therefore, the breathing would stop in the fourth jhana.
– In the same way, bodily pains should go away in early jhanas. Brahmas do not feel pain.

To get to any jhana, one must transcend the kama loka. In anariya jhana that is achieved on a temporary basis, by just suppressing kama raga.
– This is why one can attain even the first Ariya jhana only when one is at the Anagami stage, where there is no kama raga anusaya left.

That statement is in ALL suttas describing jhanic experience (see #2):
So vivicceva kāmehi, vivicca akusalehi dhammehi savitakkaṃ savicāraṃ vivekajaṃ pītisukhaṃ paṭhamaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati..“.

Thus “vivicceva kāmehi” could be on a temporary basis (anariya jhana) and on a permanent basis in Ariya jhana.
– Here “permanent” means one will NEVER lose the ability to get into jhana, even in future lives. That is why an Anagami DOES NOT come back to lower realms from the rupavacara Brahma realms reserved for Anagamis.
– Those who cultivate anariya jhana are also born in other rupavacara Brahma realms. But they “come back” to the human realm, and in subsequent rebirths could be reborn in apayas as well. They are not “permanently released” from any realm in kama loka.