Author Topic: questions - open for discussion  (Read 1896 times)

NoSeeker

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questions - open for discussion
« on: March 25, 2013, 02:48:17 AM »
Hello all, I have a few questions and would like to get your opinions to get more clarity on the process of Meditation


1. Two statements I hear here and there and they seem contradictory to each other a) Meditation is relaxation. So totally relax and let go of every thought and desire. b) Focus on ******* , it could be breath/mantra/bodily sensations. At a very subtle level, when one intends to focus - no matter how much detached he/she's from action, its still a desire. A desire can and often leads to clinging.

2. I have just attended 10 days vipassana retreat at SN Goenka center. While I appreciate his efforts and also appreciate the technique, I feel the technique was opposite to what my notion was of meditation. According to the sources I believed prior to my retreat, meditation is transforming mind to NO-MIND. In other words, stop the activities of the mind and just let the consciousness witness the passage of time. That way meditation HAPPENS. But the technique taught at Vipassana Center (although I admit it will be very very beneficial to gradually relate physical patterns to generation of emotions/brain waves and thus helping to reduce the misery), its more of a doing and not happening. I hope you understand what I mean. I believed, meditation has to happen EFFORTLESSLY and not to be done with even mild efforts. I see, no matter how much I advance in Vipassana taught by SN Goenka, I will still have my mind active while practicing. And when even a tiny bit of effort comes in picture, the monster mind wakes up. Any comments on my interpretation?

3. This is about Buddhism. I knew little about Buddhist teachings/beliefs before my retreat. What I came to know about ultimate reality that's perceived in Buddhism is that everything is vibration at the lowest level of existence. Okay, completely agree. But I got an impression, there's not really any opinion or belief about concepts/truths like cosmic consciousness, kundalini, third eye, Karma in Buddhist teachings. I may be wrong, anybody could throw a light and enlighten me about this?

Comments welcome -

Dharmic Tui

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    • Some Theravada, some secular
Re: questions - open for discussion
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2013, 05:21:02 AM »
I can't really comment on your Goenka question as I have no experience with it, but perhaps this helps you:
1. Two statements I hear here and there and they seem contradictory to each other a) Meditation is relaxation. So totally relax and let go of every thought and desire.
If you've been told this, it's not entirely accurate. IMO, meditation is not relaxation, it is observation/awareness. It can be relaxing though.
b) Focus on ******* , it could be breath/mantra/bodily sensations. At a very subtle level, when one intends to focus - no matter how much detached he/she's from action, its still a desire.
It's an act not a desire. You may have a desired outcome from practice, but focusing on that will get you further from where you desire to be.
3. This is about Buddhism. I knew little about Buddhist teachings/beliefs before my retreat. What I came to know about ultimate reality that's perceived in Buddhism is that everything is vibration at the lowest level of existence. Okay, completely agree. But I got an impression, there's not really any opinion or belief about concepts/truths like cosmic consciousness, kundalini, third eye, Karma in Buddhist teachings.
"Buddhist teachings" is an extremely broad field. There are the core teachings which are universal to most flavours of Buddhism of the 4 noble truths and the eightfold path, but most everything else is some sort of subjective spin often due to some sort of cultural influence or interpretation of the original Pali text (which in itself was written some time after the life of the Buddha).

From experience I have found it beneficial to spend more time on practice and the core teachings than get overly caught up in the theory and texts. Less thinkey, more doey.

Re: questions - open for discussion
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2013, 10:19:30 AM »
1. Two statements I hear here and there and they seem contradictory to each other a) Meditation is relaxation. So totally relax and let go of every thought and desire. b) Focus on ******* , it could be breath/mantra/bodily sensations. At a very subtle level, when one intends to focus - no matter how much detached he/she's from action, its still a desire. A desire can and often leads to clinging.
Well for starters in the meditation that we practice, we do not focus on breath or bodily sensations. We are aware of it. So the b) that you are talking about is applicable to only anapana that you have learnt under goenkaji, and it is only to get one started in vipassana and by itself does not yield pannya. (wisdom)

Quote
I see, no matter how much I advance in Vipassana taught by SN Goenka, I will still have my mind active while practicing. And when even a tiny bit of effort comes in picture, the monster mind wakes up. Any comments on my interpretation?
I dont want to draw conclusions beforehand.  :D
I would not worry so much about mind being active or passive. I am more worried about the garbage in it and taking out the trash.

Quote
3. This is about Buddhism. I knew little about Buddhist teachings/beliefs before my retreat. What I came to know about ultimate reality that's perceived in Buddhism is that everything is vibration at the lowest level of existence. Okay, completely agree. But I got an impression, there's not really any opinion or belief about concepts/truths like cosmic consciousness, kundalini, third eye, Karma in Buddhist teachings. I may be wrong, anybody could throw a light and enlighten me about this?
these are included in suttas but are only explained after one is firmly footed in the path. studying only philosophy without practice is of no use and in counter productive. So one is kept away from all the above till one experiences them in practice.
The above question reminds me of this story of a hunter - told by goenka in one of the discourses.
the hunter is struck by a arrow and would not let anyone take it out till someone explains who shot it, for what purpose, etc...

 

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