MN30, Jhānas are superior to knowledge and vision

In MN30, the 4 Jhānas, 4 formless attainments and cessation attainment are all higher level than knowledge and vision.

And before that, there was a stage of concentration (samādhi), which leads to knowledge and vision.

So I find this very satisfying. The dry insight groups can get to knowledge and vision with samādhi that is before Jhānas.

Yet, when Jhānas are attained, they are higher and more sublime than knowledge and vision.

This would also point out that those who believe in Jhānas is lite Jhānas, might contradict the sutta (likely because they didn’t read this sutta) and say that their knowledge and vision is superior, but those who attained to the deep absorption Jhānas would know otherwise.

Question: knowledge and vision does it imply stream winning or before? What does the commentary says about this?

Also thoughts?

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In this sutta ñāṇadassanaṁ (knowledge and vision) refers to :
Bhikkhu Bodhi note 347

"the divine eye(MA) the ability to see subtle forms invisible to normal vision:.

so as the preceeding sutta explains the Buddha gave these two suttas after Devadatta left the order.

29. The Greater Discourse on the Simile of the Heartwood

Thus have I heard. On one occasion the Blessed One was living at Rājagaha on the mountain Vulture Peak; it was soon after Devadatta had left. There, referring to Devadatta, the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus thus:
Being diligent, he achieves the attainment of virtue. He is pleased with that attainment of virtue, but his intention is not fulfilled…Being diligent, he achieves the attainment of concentration. He is pleased with that attainment of concentration, but his intention is not fulfilled. He does not, on account of it, laud himself and disparage others. He does not become intoxicated with that attainment of concentration; he does not grow negligent and fall into negligence. Being diligent, he achieves knowledge and vision. He is pleased with that knowledge and vision and his intention is fulfilled. On account of it he lauds himself and disparages others thus: ‘I live knowing and seeing, but these other bhikkhus live unknowing and unseeing.’ He becomes intoxicated with that knowledge and vision, grows negligent, falls into negligence, and being negligent, he lives in suffering.

thus this apparently impressive sign, yet ultimately trivial attainment, is that which Devadatta had attained. It was not ariya, not even vipassana, and not related to dry insight.


but to get divine eye, need the Jhānas, why then put the Jhānas after it?

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In this the Buddha is now showing the bhikkhu who doesn’t overly value jhana or ‘knowledge and vision’ but who uses jhana only as a basis for insight. And thus attains liberation.

Bhikkhu Bodhi 353:Although the jhānas may also have been included in the attainment of concentration set forth in §10, and knowledge and vision was described as higher than the attainment of concentration, the jhānas now become higher than knowledge and vision because they are being treated as the basis for the attainment of cessation and the destruction of the taints (in §21).

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