+2 votes
by (17.2k points)

It is said that when the mind enters Nibbana, the body and mind process ceases(Nama-rupa nirodha). This non-experience sounds somewhat similar to what we experience in deep, dreamless sleep(continuously arising Bhavanga cittas) where one does not have a sense of time and existence until one awakes in the morning.

I've heard that there are about 5 to 6 ways that a meditator might mistake the mind entering such prolonged states of Bhavanga as Nibbana.  Ex: due to extreme Viriya(energy) the mind enters prolonged Bhavanga states during meditation. Another is due to heightened Passadhi(calmness).

This is said to be explained in detail in one of the books by venerable Mahasi Saydaw. I'm looking for the book and the section where this is explained.

Thank you!

by (1.8k points)
That sounds very interesting.  What is this Viraya (energy)?
by (17.2k points)
Viriya is mental energy or effort. Laziness is the opposite.
by (1.8k points)
Does it arrive from long periods of concentration?
by (17.2k points)
No. Its proximate cause is a sense of urgency
by (1.8k points)
Thanks.  A sense of urgency during meditation? From desire to reach a goal?
by (17.2k points)
Possibly. It could also be due to seeing the danger in Samsara. More details maybe found in the book I'm referring to in the question
by (2.0k points)
Either hope or fear, onging, fleeing, or both, are bases for doing efforts. So when 'light' arises, restless and remores are not different to overdose of viriya.
by (260 points)
Similar, yes, but maybe by very nature of the exit-able-ness (transitoriness) of Bhavanga, that is how it is known to be different than Nibbana?
If you never leave the state of whatever it is, then you would know the craving to do so to be gone. But “you” also wouldn’t “know,” either, because you never leave it. It’s like, how do I know if I’m dead or sleeping? The only way to know is if you never wake up…. But then you’d also never “know,” now would you? Is the craving to “know” what could keep one from actual “knowing”?
Maybe this doesn’t answer your question; if not, disregard

2 Answers

0 votes
by (2.9k points)
Can you provide more information on what books you've already checked? Makes it easier for others to help.

I also like to add that someone will know that Nibbana happened, for lack of better way putting it. Things change permanently on a deep level. That change doesn't happen with bhavanga. So, there are clear differences that can be known. Not just change, the content of the moments before and after are also different.

So, if someone would ask me whether (s)he 'was in Nibbana' I would point to the defilements. Are they still there? If yes, then more work has to be done. Nibbana itself is, in that sense, not that interesting. Only the presence of the hindrances is. With that approach there is no need for a book.  Something to consider.
0 votes
by (2.0k points)
When still not leaving, abounding, home, stand?
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