The new version of Jhanas Advice brings to light a woefully neglected subject in Buddhist meditation -- how to achieve the meditative absorptions (jhanas). Frequently discussed by Wisdom Quarterly, they are otherwise a secretive topic reserved for forest monasteries. Descriptions and references are unavoidable in the sutras. But the vipassana ("dry insight") meditation movement, which has been underway for many decades now, looks on the jhanas as a pitfall on the path to enlightenment. One may characterize it as a fear of jhana, a fear of of the potential of attachment to bliss, a fear of distraction by the supernormal powers (abhiñña) possible through concentration.
Meditator holding the jhana mudra
- “Stephen Snyder and Tina Rasmussen know what they write about in this book through their own direct experience as dedicated yogis. This book serves as a bridge for Westerners, as a conduit to the traditional teachings of the Buddha.” — Venerable Pa Auk Sayadaw
- “This is a unique road map to the extraordinary and transforming states of mind known as the jhanas. As a psychologist and as a practicing Buddhist, I recommend this book wholeheartedly.” — Rick Hansen, Ph.D., co-author of Buddha’s Brain: The New Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom
- “Practicing the Jhānas is a wonderful addition to our understanding of concentration practice. Tina Rasmussen and Stephen Snyder draw on a wealth of personal experience to clearly elucidate and fine-tune this profound meditative path. Highly recommended.” — Joseph Goldstein, author of A Heart Full of Peace and One Dharma
- “A fascinating look at the inner experience of jhāna meditation as taught by the Ven. Pa Auk Sayadaw. Tina and Stephen are among a very few Western students of Sayadaw who can speak authoritatively about these profound levels of concentration. Their work is a most valuable addition to the contemporary literature of Theravadin Buddhism.” — Guy Armstrong, teacher, Spirit Rock Meditation Center
- “This book will be of interest to any dedicated meditator, regardless of their style of practice. It provides a valuable contribution to the growing understanding of jhāna and its important place in Buddhist meditation.” — Richard Shankman, author of The Experience of Samadhi