Author Topic: Poll on anapanasati  (Read 7863 times)

TheJourney

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Poll on anapanasati
« on: February 18, 2016, 09:23:51 PM »
When I first read "..experiencing the whole body "I" shall breathe out," thus he trains himself",
I interpret that as the human body which is same as what Mathew has interpreted in some of his old postings. I just noticed Mathew's interpretation in older posting today.

However, when I read Pa_Auk Tawya Sayadaw's PDF on anapanasati, he points out that the word "body" means the body of the breath not the body of a person.

One can do either, but what did Buddha mean?

If you are mindful of the whole breath, it keeps you mindful.

If you are mindful of the whole body in that one breath, it also keeps you mindful.

I guess it comes down to a matter of preference.


Matthew

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2016, 08:34:47 AM »
Breath body is a human concept, a fiction, a fabrication, a mental confection. You got one body, usually with two arms, two legs etc.
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

Attachless

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2016, 10:34:49 AM »
Are you sure he referred to exactly "..experiencing the whole body "I" shall breathe out," thus he trains himself" when you talk of Pa Auk saying it`s the body of the breath that is meant? And in which context?

Usually, I imagine the Buddha being clever enough to not make such obvious mistakes (in terms of them being so easily to be mistaken and misunderstood, obviously). As he is quite clear in all he says, "body" would be one of the more easily recognizable words, as in, relating to the body. :-D
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TheJourney

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2016, 05:22:48 PM »
Yes. Several PDFs try to interpret what Buddha meant. They all come to the conclusion that it is the length of the breath for inhale and for exhale.

Next Buddha says something about tranquility. I thought it is the relaxed tension when exhaling with the whole body, but all PDFs again say that Buddha was referring to the inhale and exhale through the nostril.


Middleway

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2016, 10:25:33 PM »
It is irrelevant what the PDFs interpet/conclude/declare about what Buddha said. We have to go by our experience.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

TheJourney

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2016, 05:00:40 AM »
Sure , you can do any way that works for you.

Buddha's teaching is his method. It is academic discussing what Buddha meant.

Sometimes, it is good to be humble and try to understand the master.


Middleway

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2016, 09:47:17 PM »
Let us not confuse PDFs with the Buddha. Even if the Buddha himself to write one of those PDFs, it would still be a concept in our minds and not reality.

Suppose a few people go to Paris and come back and report that Eiffel Tower is the thing of beauty. It is their experience. Their experience can never by my experience. It will be just a concept in my mind. I may have faith in their words and believe in what they say, but it is still a concept for me. I can never accept their words as reality. The only way is to experience it myself. Of course there are instances when I am satisfied with intellectual understanding. I would not touch a live high voltage power line to find out the consequence.

Even Lord Buddha were to say to me that there is something called breath body, it would still be a concept in my mind. When we accept someone else's experience to be the reality, our seeking stops. Our minds become closed. We will never attempt to know the reality ourselves. Then we will be staring at the conceptual wall for the rest of our lives.

One cannot "try" to understand. We either understand or we don't. Humility allows us to accept and admit that we don't understand. Then the possibility to understand arises. 
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

TheJourney

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2016, 09:06:58 PM »
When talking about Nibbana or any other concept, it is true that words cannot do justice to the original concept.

When it comes to instructions, that is different from concept. In instruction, you provide step by step instruction to ensure someone is following it correctly.

It may be that there is no difference in certain technique. Here we are discussing what Buddha meant.

Breathing in with mindfulness of the body of the breath which is from inhaling to its end, and then exhaling to its end.  Or breathing in but involving the whole human body experience and exhaling with whole human body relaxing out with the breath.

Procedural wise, there is a difference between these two methods. Of course, it may not make any difference in the end result. I notice that some people think it is the second way, but many monks have gone out of the way to state that they interpret the writing (memorized from what Buddha taught) as mindfulness of the body of the breath.

It is not a big issue. Just surveying opinions. 

This is different than saying Buddha experienced Nibbana, and we are trying to understand what Nibbana feels like. Of course, in this context, one would have to experience Nibbana for oneself.

"Letting go" is a concept that one experience in experiment to investigate "letting go".

As to the instruction in anapana, it is prescribing something concrete not a concept.

Middleway

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2016, 01:02:04 AM »
When talking about Nibbana or any other concept, it is true that words cannot do justice to the original concept.

Nibbana is not an original concept. It is reality! It is a concept in our minds because we heard or read about it.

When it comes to instructions, that is different from concept. In instruction, you provide step by step instruction to ensure someone is following it correctly.

It may be that there is no difference in certain technique. Here we are discussing what Buddha meant.

Breathing in with mindfulness of the body of the breath which is from inhaling to its end, and then exhaling to its end.  Or breathing in but involving the whole human body experience and exhaling with whole human body relaxing out with the breath.

Procedural wise, there is a difference between these two methods. Of course, it may not make any difference in the end result. I notice that some people think it is the second way, but many monks have gone out of the way to state that they interpret the writing (memorized from what Buddha taught) as mindfulness of the body of the breath.

It is not a big issue. Just surveying opinions.

This is different than saying Buddha experienced Nibbana, and we are trying to understand what Nibbana feels like. Of course, in this context, one would have to experience Nibbana for oneself.

"Letting go" is a concept that one experience in experiment to investigate "letting go".

As to the instruction in anapana, it is prescribing something concrete not a concept.

Buddha did indeed provide step by step instructions. There is no need to further dissect the sutta. Buddha had been teaching this technique for a while before he delivered the discourse on Anapanasati sutta. He chose to teach it in its entirety on that full moon day because there was a gathering of 400 bikkus from all over the country. He taught this technique for over 40 years after that discourse. Ananda would have caught it if Buddha said breath body even once.

Matthew is speaking from experience. My experience is that every time I concentrate too much on the breath, I hypnotise myself and blackout. So, it is a big issue (for me).

What is your experience? I suggest you find out for yourself.

Kind regards,

Middleway
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

TheJourney

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2016, 03:59:47 AM »
Yes, Nibbana is a reality. I meant to convey that Nibbana is not something that can be conveyed by words.


Middleway

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2016, 12:42:23 PM »
Yes, Nibbana is a reality. I meant to convey that Nibbana is not something that can be conveyed by words.

Please do not agree with me too quickly. You see, my saying that Nibbana is reality is also a concept in my mind. To be honest, I don't know what Nibbana is. When I accept and say to myself that I don't know, then is there no concept in my mind, and then my mind goes into seeking mode.

If I say something mean to you in this post, you may get aversion and anger arises. If I say the same thing in another language that you don't understand, then your ego does not arise to get aversion or anger. But in reality, what I say to you in this post in both languages are just black and white pixels.

When I see my daughter, my memories of holding her in my arms when she was born, on day 2 of her daycare how I quietly left when she was distracted, chasing her school bus on day 1 etc. all come rushing in. I am attached to the concept called "my daughter". Then I project that concept into future, I want her to be a doctor, engineer or someone successful. I get angry when she wants to be a standup comedian. On the other hand, she is a vibrant girl full of energy living life (words I cannot help). This is the reality.  The concept of "my daughter" equals attachment, and attachment leads to misery.

We constantly label things and turn reality into concepts and get attached to those concepts which brings suffering to our lives.

Stephan (member of this forum) beautifully described a tree as "an explosion of energy". That is reality! Tree is a concept in our head.


 
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Nicky

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #11 on: March 24, 2016, 07:07:43 AM »
When I first read "..experiencing the whole body "I" shall breathe out," thus he trains himself",

One can do either, but what did Buddha mean?

One needs to read the whole sutta, particularly where Buddha states: "I tell you monks that in & out breathing is a body (kaya) amongst bodies".

The Pali is "sabba kaya", which means "all bodies" rather than the "whole body". The word "sabba" means "all" rather than "whole".

"Experiencing all bodies" means experiencing the dukkha/peace interrelationship between the nama kaya (mind), rupa kaya (physical body) and the breath body.

It means to experience cause & effect and the 4 noble truths via the physical body.

For example, when the mind is non-attached & non-craving, this causes the breathing to calm, which causes the physical body to calm, which causes the mind to calm. Or if the mind is disturbed, the breathing will become disturbed, causing the physical body to become disturbed.

This is what it means. 

It is important to know the breath in the Pali is called the "kaya sankhara" or "body conditioner" (refer to MN 44). Experiencing "all bodies" is to experience the breathing as "body conditioner", just as stage 7 is experiencing rapture & happiness as the mind conditioner (citta-sankhara).

The reason why Buddha did not call stage 3 "experiencing the body-conditioner" is because the mind relationship must also be experienced.

There are 3 kaya, namely, nama kaya (mental group), rupa kaya (physical group) and the breathing.  Experiencing the interrelationship between all 3 groups is "experiencing all bodies".

:)
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 07:17:53 AM by Nicky »

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #12 on: March 24, 2016, 07:09:23 AM »
Breath body is a human concept, a fiction, a fabrication, a mental confection. You got one body, usually with two arms, two legs etc.

The Buddha did not hold the same view. The Buddha said:

Quote
I tell you, monks, that this — the in-&-out breath — is classed as a body among bodies...

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.118.than.html

TheJourney

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2016, 03:50:58 PM »
Breath body refers to the beginning, the middle, and the end of breath.

Breath in, end of breathing in, breathing out, and end of breathing out --- this whole cycle is breath body.

This is what Buddha was referring to, at least all the PDFs that talk about anapanasati refer to this.

Nicky

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #14 on: March 24, 2016, 05:20:28 PM »
Breath body refers to the beginning, the middle, and the end of breath.

Breath in, end of breathing in, breathing out, and end of breathing out --- this whole cycle is breath body.

This is what Buddha was referring to, at least all the PDFs that talk about anapanasati refer to this.

You previously said: "Buddha's teaching is his method. It is academic discussing what Buddha meant."

But, in reality, you are obviously not really interested in discussing what Buddha meant because the Buddha never ever said anywhere that the breath body refers to the beginning, the middle, and the end of breath. .

The Buddha said:

Quote
I tell you, monks, that this — the in-&-out breath — is classed as a body among bodies...

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.118.than.html

Quote
In-&-out breaths are bodily; these are things tied up/interrelated with the body. That's why in-&-out breaths are bodily fabricators.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.044.than.html

Quote
Mindfulness with in-&-out breathing is developed & pursued so as to be of great fruit, of great benefit.I, too, monks, before my awakening, when I was an unawakened bodhisatta, frequently remained with this abiding. When I frequently remained with this abiding, neither my body was fatigued nor were my eyes, and my mind, through lack of clinging/sustenance, was released from fermentations.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn54/sn54.008.than.html

The Buddha said:

Quote
in the course of the future there will be monks who won't listen when discourses that are words of the Tathagata...are being recited. They won't lend ear, won't set their hearts on knowing them, won't regard these teachings as worth grasping or mastering. But they will listen when discourses that are literary works — the works of poets, elegant in sound, elegant in rhetoric, the work of outsiders, words of disciples — are recited. They will lend ear and set their hearts on knowing them.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn20/sn20.007.than.html

Quote
(44) Others will misapprehend according to their individual views, hold on to them tenaciously and not easily discard them;[18] we shall not misapprehend according to individual views nor hold on to them tenaciously, but shall discard them with ease — thus effacement can be done.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.008.nypo.html

 :)
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 06:01:45 PM by Nicky »

Nicky

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #15 on: March 24, 2016, 05:32:47 PM »
When I first read "..experiencing the whole body "I" shall breathe out," thus he trains himself",

However, when I read Pa_Auk Tawya Sayadaw's PDF on anapanasati, he points out that the word "body" means the body of the breath not the body of a person.

One can do either, but what did Buddha mean?

Obviously, you are interested in Pa_Auk Tawya Sayadaw rather than the Buddha.

When the Buddha used the words: "He trains himself", this means the meditator trains himself in the 3 trainings of morality, concentration  & insight.

Quote
There are these three trainings. Which three? The training in heightened virtue, the training in heightened mind, the training in heightened discernment.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an03/an03.088.than.html

If we read the sutta, the Buddha does not use the words: "He trains himself" at the 1st two stages, because these two stages are exclusively concentration training.

Quote
[1] Breathing in long, he discerns, 'I am breathing in long'; or breathing out long, he discerns, 'I am breathing out long.'

[2] Or breathing in short, he discerns, 'I am breathing in short'; or breathing out short, he discerns, 'I am breathing out short.'

[3] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in experiencing all bodies.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out experiencing all bodies.'

[4] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in calming body fabricator.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out calming body fabricator.'

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.118.than.html

But at the 3rd stage, there is an insight component, where the cause & effect relationships of the 4 noble truths are discerned in how the clinging & craving of the mind will disturb the breath & physical body & how the opposite will occur, namely, the abandoning of craving & attachment will calm & purify the mind, breath & body.

What insight (vipassana) exists into suffering & its cessation in experiencing the beginning, the middle, and the end of breath? None.

This is what the Buddha taught.  :)

Quote
And how is mindfulness with in-&-out breathing developed & pursued so as to bring the four frames of reference to their culmination? And how are the four frames of reference developed & pursued so as to bring the seven factors for awakening to their culmination?

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.118.than.html

...the seven factors for Awakening go to the culmination of their development. [And] for him these two qualities occur in tandem: tranquillity (samatha) & insight (vipassana).

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.149.than.html

« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 06:03:33 PM by Nicky »

Nicky

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #16 on: March 24, 2016, 05:47:40 PM »
This is what Buddha was referring to, at least all the PDFs that talk about anapanasati refer to this.

This is not true. The two PDFs below explain as I have. Regardless, the Buddha did not write any PDFs.

Quote
A. As you walk to the door of your parents’ house, thinking about the situation (2b—verbal fabrication), you pull up memories of things your uncle has done in the past (2c—mental fabrication). This provokes anger, causing your breathing to become labored and tight (2a—bodily fabrication). This makes you uncomfortable (2c—mental fabrication), and you are aware of how uncomfortable you feel (3—consciousness). Hormones are released into your bloodstream (4 f through 4i—Form)

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/thanissaro/shapeofsuffering.pdf

Quote
STEP THREE: EXPERIENCING ALL BODIES

In step three, the aim is to experience all kaya, all bodies. The essence of this step is to feel all bodies while breathing in and breathing out. We already began to observe while practicing the beginning steps that the breath is the conditioner of our flesh-and-blood bodies. This step does not involve anything new, we merely note more this fact more profoundly, clearly, and carefully than earlier. We contemplate more distinctly the fact that there are two kaya (bodies). Continuously observe this while breathing in and breathing out. (69)

The practitioner must recollect an observation that we began to experience previously. Recall the fact that the breath is the conditioner of the flesh-body. We will distinguish between two things,    but we will call both of them kaya (body). The breath is a body in that it is a group or collection. The flesh-body is a kaya because it is a group or collection, also. There are these two groups or bodies. One group is the breath that conditions the flesh-body group. Analyze this experience to see distinctly that there are two groups. And see how they condition each other. Contemplate this more and, more emphatically until it is obvious. (70)

When you hear the word "body," please understand that it in­cludes the meaning of the word "group." In the original Pali language the Lord Buddha used this word "kaya": "sabbakayamipatisamveti (experiencing all bodies)." In Thai, kaya comes from the Pali kaya and can mean "group, pile, heap, division," also. This word does not apply to our physical human forms exclusively, but can apply to other things as well. For instance, in Pali the word for a squad of soldiers is kaya, a kaya of soldiers. Kaya means "group, heap, collection"; please do not understand it in terms of flesh-bodies only. The breath is called "kaya" or group, also. To understand what "experiencing all bodies" means we must have the correct understanding of this word "kaya" Then we can know about both groups, the breath group and the flesh body group. (71)

The specific aim of this step is that we must know that there are two groups and that one group conditions, nourishes, and sup­ports the other group. The breath group nourishes the body group. Actually, we have experienced this since the beginning of Anapanasati practice. Earlier, we experienced that when the breath is coarse the flesh-body gets aggravated and when the breath is fine the body calms down. We have observed these facts since practicing steps one and two. In this step, we emphasize this secret until it becomes absolutely clear. There are two groups. One of them con­ditions and nourishes the other. Know the difference between them. (72)

THE THREE MEANINGS OF SANKHARA

We are making the inner, mental experience that these bodies condition each other in this way. The body which is the causal conditioner is given the name kaya-sankhara (body conditioner) to distinguish it from the other, the one effected by the conditioning, the “conditioned body." Work on this fact in the mind, seeing it as if it were physically tangible. See the one group condition and nurture the other. See them arise together, fall together, coarsen together, become fine together, grow comfortable together, and become uncomfortable together. Realize how intimately they are connected.

This is what is meant by "seeing all bodies," Watch both bodies together and see them condition each other. This is valuable for seeing truth more extensively, for realizing anatta, even. In seeing this interrelationship, we see that what occurs is merely a natural process of conditioning. There is no atta, no self, no soul, no such thing at all involved. Such understanding can have the highest benefit, although it may be somewhat beyond the specific object of this step. For now, however, we only need to understand this fact of conditioning enough to be able to regulate the flesh-body, to calm it by regulating the breath-body. (73)         

I would like to take this opportunity to discuss all the meanings of the term "sankhara." This is a very common and important word in the Pali scriptures, but many people have problems with it due to its different uses and meanings. Languages are like that, uncertain and seemingly unreliable. The single word "sankhara" can mean "conditioner," the cause that conditions; it can mean "condition," the result of the action of conditioning; and it can mean "'conditioning," the activity or process of conditioning. We use the same word for the subject of the conditioning, "the concocter," as well as the object, "the concoction." We even use it for the activity, "the concocting," itself. This may be a bit confusing for you, so please remember that "sankhara" has three meanings. The correct meaning depends on the context. This knowledge will be valuable in your further studies. (74)

Study the three meanings of sankhara in this body of ours. There is no need to study it in books or in a theoretical way. The body itself is a sankhara. It has been conditioned by a variety of causes and by the many things of which it is formed. Thus, it is a sankhara in the meaning of "condition." Once this body exists, it causes the arising of other things, such as thoughts, feelings, and actions. Without the body these thoughts and actions could never happen. Thus, it is a "conditioner" because it causes other actions. Lastly, in this flesh-body sankhara of ours, there is the process of conditioning going on constantly. We can discover all three aspects of the word sankhara within this very body. Study the meaning of sankhara in this comprehensive way. Then you will find it easy and convenient to realize more and more profound Dhamma as you go on. (75)

EXPERIENCING SANKHARA

In step three - "experiencing all bodies," experiencing both the breath and this flesh-body - each of these three meanings is practiced. First, we contemplate the flesh-body as the thing conditioned by the breath. Then, we see the breath as the conditioner of the flesh-body. Lastly, we observe the activity of conditioning that always exists simultaneously between the two of them. Thus, in the practice of step three we see the conditioner, the condition, and the action of conditioning. This conditioning of the body is the physical level of sankhara. We have not yet seen it on the mental level. Step three is this work of seeing these three things together, simultaneously and continuously, within the mind. Then, you will see everything concerning the term "sankhara," especially as it relates to the kaya and its activity, right here in step three. (76)

When we have studied this fact until it is plainly, obviously, and universally understood as explained above, then we will be able to experience all three of these facts together in one moment. Even for the duration of just one in-breath, or for just one out-breath, we can experience all three facts in just one stroke of the breath. If we are able to do so, then we have "fully experienced the kaya-sankhara (body-conditioner)" and step three is successfully completed. (77)

The essence of practicing step three is to know that there are two kaya, and to be able to regulate one kaya through the other kaya. That is, we can regulate the flesh-body through the breath-body. Once we are certain or this, once we see it dearly, once we are convinced by our experience of this fact with each in-breath and out-breath, then we have realized success in our practice of step three.

http://www.dhammatalks.net/Books3/Bhikkhu_Buddhadasa_Anapanasati_Mindfulness_with_Breathing.htm
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 06:00:18 PM by Nicky »

Nicky

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #17 on: March 24, 2016, 06:12:17 PM »
However, when I read Pa_Auk Tawya Sayadaw's PDF on anapanasati

Pa_Auk Tawya Sayadaw miscomprehends. He said:

Quote
The Buddha said also the bhikkhu has mindfulness established before him, and, he breathes in mindfully, he breathes out mindfully. That refers to ànàpànassati, mindfulness of breathing: being mindful of the breath.

This is not correct.

The Buddha said: "the bhikkhu has mindfulness established before him".

But the Buddha did not say: "being mindful of the breath" because the breath is not "before him" (in Pali parimukhaṃ: "in front of one's face"). 

The word "mindfulness" means to "remember" or "keep in mind" and one cannot be mindful of the breath. One can be mindful (remember) to be aware of the breath but one cannot be mindful of the breath. That is why the sutta states:

Quote
On that occasion the monk remains seeing (ānupassī) the body in & of itself — ardent, alert & mindful (satimā) putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.118.than.html

The Buddha said one establishes "right view" or an "empty mind" before him. The Buddha said the meditator is mindful of "right view", as follows:

Quote
One is mindful to abandon wrong view & to enter & remain in right view: This is one's right mindfulness. Thus these three qualities — right view, right effort, & right mindfulness — run & circle around right view.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.117.than.html
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 06:35:54 PM by Nicky »

Nicky

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #18 on: March 24, 2016, 06:27:47 PM »
However, when I read Pa_Auk Tawya Sayadaw's PDF on anapanasati

The following is also not correct:

Quote
3) Then The Buddha said the bhikkhu breathes in and out experiencing the mental formation. By mental formation (cittasankharo), He means here perception (sanna) and feeling (vedana). Perception and feeling are associated with all four jhanas. So, as before, one discerns the mental formations of the four jhanas (now emphasizing perception and feeling), and contemplates them as impermanent, suffering and non-self. That is how one breathes in and out experiencing the mental formation.


The Pali word is not "mental formation/condition" but "mind conditioner".

This step is to observe how feeling (rapture & happiness) push & pull the mind (citta) into attraction, lust or even repulsion & fear towards rapture & happiness.

The Buddha taught feeling & perception are the mind conditioner, as follows:

Quote
What one feels, one perceives (labels in the mind). What one perceives, one thinks about. What one thinks about, one objectifies.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.018.than.html

If, when touched by a feeling of pleasure, one relishes it, welcomes it or remains fastened to it, then one's passion/lust obsession gets obsessed. If, when touched by a feeling of pain, one sorrows, grieves, & laments, beats one's breast, becomes distraught, then one's resistance/hatred obsession gets obsessed.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.148.than.html

In summary, Pa_Auk Tawya Sayadaw is not explaining Anapanasati as the Buddha explained it.

 :)
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 06:30:48 PM by Nicky »

Matthew

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #19 on: March 25, 2016, 09:47:11 AM »
Quote
The Buddha said: "the bhikkhu has mindfulness established before him".

But the Buddha did not say: "being mindful of the breath" because the breath is not "before him" (in Pali parimukhaṃ: "in front of one's face").

This is a mistranslation of parimukham - it's open to interpretation, yet the standard one you have quoted does not make sense in the context in which it's used in the Suttas.

Parimukham means "to bring to the fore of consciousness", not "to bring (or be) in front of your face".

This misinterpretation is why many people do nose-meditation.
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Pacific Flow

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #20 on: March 25, 2016, 03:43:48 PM »
Nose-meditation  :D that's a funny term. I am doing nose meditation too. Why? Certainly not because of any translation of a Pali text. I do it that way because common sense tells me if I want to train my mind to become focused, a smaller focus area will lead to sharper concentration. And my experience confirms it.
Ask 3 self proclaimed Pali experts to translate a passage of a sutta, and you will get 4 different versions. Unless you are sure you know Pali better than them all, judge with reason. Then test it by experience.

Middleway

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #21 on: March 25, 2016, 04:27:36 PM »
Nose-meditation  :D that's a funny term. I am doing nose meditation too. Why? Certainly not because of any translation of a Pali text. I do it that way because common sense tells me if I want to train my mind to become focused, a smaller focus area will lead to sharper concentration. And my experience confirms it.
Ask 3 self proclaimed Pali experts to translate a passage of a sutta, and you will get 4 different versions. Unless you are sure you know Pali better than them all, judge with reason. Then test it by experience.

When you focus on a smaller area, don't you get a headache or blackout? What do you do when you achieve one pointed concentration? What is the purpose of it? Do you go into samadhi? Do you maintain awareness in that state? I am asking these questions because, I do achieve that one pointed concentration once in a while where I blackout and come out of it with no insight whatsoever.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Pacific Flow

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #22 on: March 25, 2016, 05:27:00 PM »
No I never get anything like headaches or blackouts as a result of "nose meditation". Not any insights as a direct effect either. Actually i find it totally unspectacular and ordinary.
Maybe i could best describe it with an analogy. It's like cutting and polishing the lense of a telescope. The telescope is the main tool of the astronomer that allows him to study his object of interest. My object of interest as a meditator is my physical and mental structure and the interaction of the two. My tool is attention.
Anapana is how i cut and polish the lense of my attention, to make and keep it sharp and allow observing my object of interest as detailed and with as little interference as possible.
The astronomer wouldn't expect to have any insight about the formation of galaxies or the  death of stars directly as a result of building or maintaining his telescope. However using that telescope to observe the night sky is what will produce interesting observations and insights about the genesis and death of stars, galaxies and other phenomena.
« Last Edit: March 25, 2016, 05:36:53 PM by Pacific Flow »

Middleway

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #23 on: March 25, 2016, 06:14:00 PM »
That's a very good analogy. So you shift your attention from that small area once you gain certain level of concentration.  I gain concentration by observing the sensations produced by breathing and after a while I get past the body and focus my attention on the mind only. That is where I find interesting insights. I do drop back into the body and sensations and then i go back to breath again.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Matthew

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Re: Poll on anapanasati
« Reply #24 on: March 25, 2016, 10:57:23 PM »
The Buddha makes no mention of noses in any Sutta on Anapana. You do nose meditation because you learnt that and are attached to it. It's a development that came after the Buddha said his Dhamma would be corrupted.
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~