THE DEVELOPMENT OF DHARMA RAPTURE




Now this is something that you probably have never ever considered at all. You have been embroiled in the interminable search for Happiness, which you are told is your birthright, together with the brainwashing data that tell you how it is to be accomplished.

So what is Rapture? 

It can be considered as the expression and experience of ecstasy or passion, or alternatively as being carried away by overwhelming emotion.
Religions on the other hand develop the idea that it is a mystical experience in which the spirit is exalted to a knowledge of divine things.
The former seems bogged down in the mire of egocentrism of either the Ego or Super Ego and the latter a debilitating condition in which one floats on a useless cloud of Cosmic Consciousness accompanied by some indefinable knowledge.

In Buddha Dharma we must look for something more substantial and natural that is a human attribute which can be developed. However it is clearly stated that Rapture is one of the seven Factors of Awakening, so it would seem to be accompanying a necessary condition that is more than just an experience.

This Rapture is quite different than mundane happiness or the higher bliss. 

In many texts, joy and rapture (piti) are considered as being the same and refer to a meditative state encountered in the first and second Jhanas. They are described as developing an escalating energy and 
pleasurable interest upon the objects of meditation and are based upon natural virtue and the actual persistent application of energy during Samatha meditation.

Here I believe we have reached the point where we can speak of Rapture as accompanying and representing the important Awakening Factor of Ever-Increasing Interest upon a Dharma theme. I believe that it moves towards the 
experience, not the emotion, of veneration, wonder and even a dread that is paradoxically not fearful in the face of the sublime.

The experience of rapture then is a sign or signal that there is applied and sustained then increasing interest present.

It has been described as:

Making the body jump to the sky (Exalting rapture)
Like the flood of a mountain stream (Fulfilling rapture

While it is certainly attained as part of the Samatha meditaion, the question is how can it be supported or developed outside the meditation itself.



IN CONSTRUCTION
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