If the pleasure of the first jhâna does not invade the whole mind, then is the first jhana not an absorption?


In MN 36 (Venerable Bodhi), the Buddha explains that the pleasure of the first jhâna did not invade all his mind. Now, this seems to me to be contrary to the idea of absorbing concentration, because if the first jhâna is absorbing concentration, then the pleasure invades the whole mind.

I am currently practicing Pa Auk Sayadaw’s methods of absorption concentration, and I find his techniques interesting to practice. But it is true that sometimes I feel that the ideas of visuddhimagga jhâna have rather forced interpretations of the sutras.

What do you think about this?

Thanks in advance

Now when I had eaten solid food and regained my strength, then quite secluded from sensual pleasures, secluded from unwholesome states, I entered upon and abided in the first jhāna, which is accompanied by applied and sustained thought, with rapture and pleasure born of seclusion. But such pleasant feeling that arose in me did not invade my mind and remain.

The quote is about pleasant feeling.
Because the Buddha knows what 2nd and 3rd Jhāna are, then it would be a correct statement about pleasant feeling. It does not contradict the vsm.

The pleasant feeling is most peaceful in the third Jhāna . That is correct.
There are less Jhāna factors in both abhidhamma and vsm and sutta for 3rd Jhāna .

This all makes sense to me.

Try not to feel the Jhāna factors , it is trying to feel things that causes you problems. This is also mentioned in the vsm.

Try to totally forget ajahn brāhm Jhāna because his made up technique is based on “feeling the factors” . That is why the Nimitta goes dark during his “Jhāna”.

As for concentration. All jhanas are a single object with consecutive mindmoments.

Maybe it is best to learn abhidhamma. It will give you a better understanding of Jhāna. You can read my short book to understand. “Lessons in Abhidhamma” on my website.


After rereading the sutra, I understood it better. In fact, the invasion of the mind by a pleasant sensation here refers to greed and lust for that pleasant sensation; and the invasion of the mind by an unpleasant sensation here refers to aversion and repugnance to that unpleasant sensation.

Thank you very much for your message. It increases my confidence in the practice. I will read your book, thank you. I hope it will help many beings.

A common problem is responding to a small sutta excerpt which can mean many things indeed.

It is also a tactic used by suttanta and EBT to spread a narrative. The abhidhamma always has a straight way . As long as I respond in line with abhidhamma. Then it is still valid.

However it is true , it is better for me to truly read the whole original reference to be most accurate in responding. However , this being wrong and being right still confirms my faith in orthodox Buddhism.


Thank you very much

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