Reply To: Goenka´s Vipassana


Part 1 of Jorg’s questions:

5. “pamukha” means “coming first”. “samādhi pamukhā sabbe dhammā.” means “samādhi comes first (when creating) all dhammā.”
– Note that micchā samādhi leads to generating “bad dhammā“, for example, bad rebirths.

6. “adhipati” means taking control or one who is in charge.
– So, Sutta Central translations are not too far off.

7. “Uttara.” You are right: “‘Incomparably better’ seems to be more fitting.”
– For example, “uttarimanussadhamma” refer to “extraordinary or superhuman qualities,” for example, jhana and magga phala.

8,9. are in different contexts.
vimutti sārā sabbe dhammā’ means “release (Nibbana) is better than all dhamma.
amat’ogadhā (amata ogadhā) sabbe dhammā” means similar since “amata” is Nibbana.
They are results.
– “paññuttarā (paññā uttarā) sabbe dhammā” is the way to get to Nibbana.
P.S. Note that dhammā lead to “things that exist in this world” especially creating “new bhava” leading to rebirths. That happens via Akusala-mula PS. Buddha Dhamma means “bhava uddha dhamma” or “stopping future rebirths.” That is done via Kusala-mula PS, which requires “paññā” to some level to get started. Paññā is optimized at the Arahant stage when no more akusala citta (to do abhishankhara with avijja) can arise in mind.

Part 2 of Jorg’s questions:

I think the main point is that AN 9.14 get into the details.
– It gets into the details of how dhammā are created via Paticca Samuppada; here, dhammā are essentially kammic energy (bhava) created by the mind starting with “avijja paccaya sankhara.”
– But in reality, PS gets started when an arammana comes to mind. It is at the “tanha paccaya upadana” step (once one gets attached to an arammana) that one starts doing (abhi)sankhara with “avijja paccaya sankhara.” See, “Difference Between Tanhā and Upādāna” The chart in #12 is important. The first several posts in “Worldview of the Buddha” explain that in detail.

The sequence is arammana>phassa>vedana>samphassa>samphassa-ja-vedana>tanha>upadana, at which stage it goes to “avijja paccaya sankhara” (see the chart of #12 as mentioned above) and start:
avijja>(abhi)sankhara (with vitakka/vicara)>vinnana>namaupa, and on to bhava.
– That is highly condensed. You can read those posts “to dig in deeper.” But you have the right idea.

Your explanation is good. I tried to add a bit more information.

P.S.Vitakka” means to start “internally debating” what to do about an arammana (that one just got attached to.) “Vicara” means to stay there and continue that process generating more “namarupa.”
– Think about what happens if you get stuck on the idea of buying a car. You will be ‘daydreaming” about the types of cars you would like. That is engaging in vitakka/vicara.
– By the way, vitakka/vicara involves kama/vyapada/vihimsa saṅkappa. The opposites are savitakka/savicara. See “Vitakka, Vicāra, Savitakka, Savicāra, and Avitakka, Avicāra.”