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This research aimed at: 1) studying the fetter in Buddhist scriptures, 2) investigating the fetter eradication and the insight meditation in Buddhist scriptures, and 3) evaluating the progression of insight meditation practitioners towards eradicating the fetter. This qualitative research was mainly conducted from the Buddhist documentary study and the in-depth interview with insight meditation masters and insight meditation practitioners.
The findings suggest that: 1) the fetter means dhamma binding the beings to the sufferings at birth. The fetter comprises ten components, which are sakkãyadiṭṭhi, vicikicchã, silabbataparãmãsa, kãmarãga, paṭigha, rũparãga, arũparãga, mãna, uddhacca, and avijjã. The fetter can be further divided into two groups: lower and higher fetters. A lower fetter comes with five components: sakkãyadiṭṭhi, vicikicchã, silabbataparãmãsa, kãmarãga, and paṭigha while a higher fetter includes other five components: rũparãga, arũparãga, mãna, uddhacca, and avijjã.
2) The Dhammas relating to fetter elimination are bodhipakhiya-dhamma (satipaṭṭhana, sammappadhãna, iddhipãda, indriya, bala, bojjhaṅga, and noble eightfold path) and mindful consideration of three characteristics. Guidelines to eliminate the fetter (all ten components) are those in the satipaṭṭhana insight meditation.
3) The progression of insight meditation practitioners to the fetter eradication was noticed as in the following: as practitioners were concentrating on the sense-object, they acknowledged that bodies were composed of the panca-khandha or five aggregates, under the three characteristics and the defilement contemplation. When the four characteristics finally came up, they could be identified as progressing steps in eradicating the fetter. If the practitioners still kept practicing the satipaṭṭhana, they could eliminate fetter more effectively in the near future. The dhamma principle for long term practice was noble eightfold path, briefly summarized in this threefold training: morality, meditation, and wisdom, also completely available in satipaṭṭhana.
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