Author Topic: how do i know my progress?  (Read 6027 times)

Anand

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how do i know my progress?
« on: March 28, 2010, 03:59:54 PM »
Hi.
it's been four months I've been practicing meditation.I got introduced to vipassana through goenka trust.But now i follow whatever i have realized and understood after joining the forum.Although i believe that concentrating on the nostrils while meditation is not the right way.i try and observe my breathing as well as my thoughts as they pass by.
My question is..how do i know i am actually making any progress on the path? or rather how do i even know i am on the right path?
My only progress i can say that now i am able to sit comfortably for 1 hour. Is there anything else i am missing??

Morning Dew

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2010, 05:33:14 PM »
Quote
..how do i know i am actually making any progress on the path? or rather how do i even know i am on the right path?

I am new to Vipassana but this comes to my mind; As soon one starts thinking like this one can be sure that he is chasing his own tail to reach something: the path, the way, his enlightment, happyness, etc ... soething that is far out there.

I assume that we will feel it once we peel off layers of our Ego and I only assume that such feeling is beyond our intelectual knowledge and beyond reason. I assume this feeling simply Is.

I feel that we are not to be concerned with where we are heading but rather how we are doing it while not doing a thing. I feel that our only job is to be mindful in the Now. Use your best tool to stay there, your breath.

I feel that via meditation we come to realise that we are not aiming anywhere, we are not going anywhere, we simply realise that we were already there all this time, only we were there blind folded thinking that we are to find the path to happiness and not realising that happiness Is the path (as Buddha said).

from http://www.deerparkthimphu.org/activities/shamatha.html
Quote
If we have ambitions, we have fixations toward whatever we are aiming for—even if our aim is enlightenment. Then there is no meditation because we are thinking about it, we are craving for it, we are fantasizing about it, imagining things. That is not meditation.

This is why a very, very important characteristic of shamatha meditation is to let go of any goal and simply sit for the sake of sitting. Here we breathe in and out and we just watch that. Nothing else. It doesn't matter if we get enlightenment or not, or if our friends gets enlightened faster than us. Who cares? We are just breathing. We just sit straight and watch the breath in and out. Nothing else.


We let go of obsessions toward aims and ambitions. This is a very important aspect. This includes even the perfection of the shamatha meditation, trying to do a perfect shamatha meditation. Even that we should get rid of. Just sit.


I hope this helps since it did help me. Thank you for starting this thread  :)

Matthew

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2010, 05:44:27 PM »
My only progress i can say that now i am able to sit comfortably for 1 hour. Is there anything else i am missing??

Hi Anand,

Congratulations on establishing such a firm footing in practice. Your hard work will not be wasted.

I'd like to quote you something from the beginners introduction to meditation:

The most important aspect of meditation is what it does to you when you are not meditating!

Meditation changes you. When you change, so does the world around you. There is an important part of the puzzle that  has nothing to do with formal "sitting" meditation practice. This is Buddhist ethics called the "Brahmavihara" or "four immeasurables".

For those unfamiliar with the term (probably you if you are reading this introduction), the Bramaivihara are:

  • Metta/Maitri: loving-kindness towards all; the hope that a person will be well; loving kindness is "the wish that all sentient beings, without any exception, be happy."
  • Karuna: compassion; the hope that a person's sufferings will diminish; compassion is the "wish for all sentient beings to be free from suffering."
  • Mudita: altruistic joy in the accomplishments of a person, oneself or other; sympathetic joy, "is the wholesome attitude of rejoicing in the happiness and virtues of all sentient beings."
  • Upekkha/Upeksha: equanimity, or learning to accept both loss and gain, praise and blame, success and failure with detachment, equally, for oneself and for others; equanimity means "not to distinguish between friend, enemy or stranger, but regard every sentient being as equal. It is a clear-minded tranquil state of mind - not being overpowered by delusions, mental dullness or agitation.

- from Wikipedia.com

The Four Immeasurables are an intimate part of the path of being a meditator. They feed - and are fed by - one's personal meditation practice symbiotically.

Meditation "practice" is practice. The Four Immeasurables are the real thing.

They are a reflection of the quality of that practice, in terms of "off-the-cushion" change. That means how you manifest in the real world - the things you think, say and do. In promoting the attitudes they embody in one's life one will enjoy a less troubled and more peaceful mind and environment and thus place oneself in a position to get the most out of one's on-the-cushion time.

Now having read that can you identify any changes or "progress" - other than the fact that you can sit for an hour? Do you get angry or upset less often? Do you have a clearer mind? Do you see people differently?

It really is "how you manifest in the world" that matters. If you are practicing Shamatha calming meditation, relaxing into your body whilst staying awake, it would surprise me greatly if there is no other change you can sense or identify in  yourself. Normally the calm you establish on the cushion or seat will flow into your daily life.

I won't say more until you have had a chance to reply to the questions.

Warmly, in the Dhamma,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

atomjack

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2010, 08:03:45 PM »
I realized that my practice is helping me by how much more aware and mindful I am outside of practice. My mind has loosened it's grip of me and it's control over my reactions. It's easier to see my thoughts for what they actually are and then I choose my reaction to them, instead of them controlling me like a puppet.

Matthew

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    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2010, 10:42:56 PM »
I realized that my practice is helping me by how much more aware and mindful I am outside of practice. My mind has loosened it's grip of me and it's control over my reactions. It's easier to see my thoughts for what they actually are and then I choose my reaction to them, instead of them controlling me like a puppet.

atomjack,

That's a really good place to be. It shows you are becoming more aware. Rather than thinking in terms of goals and progress I think it helps to consider the "way in which you are travelling" as the goal itself.

You describe well the point about choosing your response to situations rather than reacting. Again from the beginners introduction to meditation:

A basic understanding of meditation is that it:

  • firstly calms our body and mind through slowing down our habituated reactions and then;
  • allows us to develop insight to undo those habits and instead:

respond to life in a natural un-conditioned manner

The difference between a response and a reaction:

  • A reaction is habitual, conditioned and automatic: unthought and immediate.
  • A response is chosen from recognised and considered options: contemplated, which takes time.

Clearly the way you are travelling through life is more comfortable and fulfilling now. That is a good start, a valuable lesson.

Warmly, in the Dhamma,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

Jhananda

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2010, 01:09:47 AM »
Hello Anand, I believe the point in describing the stages of jhana and samadhi in the suttas is to give people a scale upon which to compare their progress. In the Ariyapariyesana Sutta (MN 26.28) the Buddha defined 8 levels of samadhi.  The 8 levels of samadhi are divided into two classes.  The first class is the jhanas. They are equivalent to savikalpa samadhi of Patanjali.  The second class of samadhi the Buddha described has the suffix ‘àyatana,’ which means ‘domain.’ They are equivalent to nirvikalpa samadhi of Patanjali. They are also related to the locas of Hinduism and the loc(s) of Sikh mysticism.  They refer to planes, or domains, of existence.  His description of eight stages of samadhi culminate with a description of nirodha which was the term the Buddha used for enlightenment.  Those eight samadhi states are as follows:

The Noble Search
Ariyapariyesana Sutta (MN 26.28)
Translated from the Pali by Jhananda 11-02-06
"Monks, there are these five strings of sensuality. Which five? Forms cognizable via the eye — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. Sounds cognizable via the ear — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. Aromas cognizable via the nose — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. Tastes cognizable via the tongue — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. Tactile sensations cognizable via the body — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing. These are the five strings of sensuality.

(1st Jhana)
"Suppose that a wild deer is living in a wilderness glen. Carefree it walks, carefree it stands, carefree it sits, carefree it lies down. Why is that? Because it has gone beyond the hunter's range. In the same way, a seeker of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu) renounces (vivicceva) sensuality (kàmehi), renounces unwholesome mental states and beliefs (akusalehi dhammehi) with applied and sustained attention (savitakkaü savicàraü) and bliss and joy (pãtisukhaü) one resides (viharati) in the clarity (upasampajja) of the first ecstasy (pañhamaü jhànaü). This seeker of Buddhahood is said to have blinded ('andhamakàsi) Mara. Trackless (apadaü), he has destroyed Mara's vision (màracakkhuü) and has become invisible (adassanaü) to the Evil One (pàpimato).

 (2nd Jhana)
"Then again seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), originating from (ekodibhàvaü) applied and sustained attention (vitakkavicàrànaü) with clear intention (våpasamà) and a noble tranquil mind (sampasàdanaü cetaso), and in the absence of applied and sustained attention (avitakkaü avicàraü) with absorption (samàdhijaü) in bliss and joy (pãtisukhaü), one resides (viharati) in the clarity (upasampajja) of the second ecstasy (dutiyaü jhànaü). This seeker of Buddhahood is said to have blinded Mara. Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

 (3rd Jhana)
"Then again seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), Residing in (viharati) bliss (Pãtiyà), dispassion (viràgà) and equanimity (upekkhako); and with a luminous (sampajàno) joy-filled body (sukha°Ëca kàyena) a noble one (ariya) proclaims a joyful abiding (sukhavihàrãti) in the equanimity (upekkhako) and mindfulness (satimà) and clarity (upasampajja) of the third ecstasy (jhana). seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu) is said to have blinded Mara. Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

 (4th Jhana)
"Then again seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), with the abandoning (pahànà) of pleasure (sukhassa) and anxiety (dukkhassa); and the earlier abandoning (pahànà pubbeva) of manic-depression (somanassadomanassànaü), agitation (atthaïgamà), suffering and unhappiness (adukkhamasukhaü); one arrives at (viharati) the clarity (upasampajja) and complete purity of mindful equanimity (upekkhàsatipàrisuddhiü) of the fourth ecstasy (catutthaü jhànaü). This, seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave), is said to have blinded Mara. Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

The Immaterial attainments
These are equivalent to Nirvikalpa samadhi
Fifth Samadhi or First Arupa Samadhi

Astral plane (àkàsànañcàyatanaü)
"Then again (Puna ca paraü) seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), with complete (Sabbaso) transcendence of perceptions of the physical domain (råpasaññànaü), passing beyond (samatikkama) the rapacious material world (pañighasaññànaü), extinguishing (atthagamà) the variety of sensory perceptions (nànattasaññànaü), without the endless pull of mental activity (amanasikàrà ananto àkàsoti), one travels within (upasampajja viharati) the astral plane (àkàsànañcàyatanaü). It is said (vuccati) this seeker of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu) has blinded ('andhamakàsi) Mara (màraü). Trackless (apadaü) he has destroyed (vadhitvà) Mara's vision (màracakkhuü). He has disappeared from (adassanaü) and surpassed (gato) the Evil One (pàpimato).

Sixth Samadhi or Second Arupa Samadhi
the domain of volition, Vinnananaacayatana
"Then again (Puna ca paraü) seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), with completely (Sabbaso) passing beyond (samatikkama) the astral plane (àkàsànañcàyatanaü), approaching (upasampajja) unbound (anantaü) volition (viññàõanti), one traverses (viharati) the domain of volition (viññàõañcàyatanaü). It is said (vuccati) this seeker of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu) has blinded ('andhamakàsi) Mara (màraü). Trackless (apadaü) he has destroyed (vadhitvà) Mara's vision (màracakkhuü). He has disappeared from (adassanaü) and surpassed (gato) the Evil One (pàpimato).

Seventh Samadhi or Third Arupa Samadhi
domain of no evil, Akincannayatana
"Then again (Puna ca paraü) seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), completely (Sabbaso) passing beyond (samatikkama) the domain of volition (viññàõañcàyatanaü) free of evil (natthi kiñcãti) one traverses (viharati) the domain of no evil (àkiñcaññàyatanaü). It is said (vuccati) this seeker of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu) has blinded ('andhamakàsi) Mara (màraü). Trackless (apadaü) he has destroyed (vadhitvà) Mara's vision (màracakkhuü). He has disappeared from (adassanaü) and surpassed (gato) the Evil One (pàpimato).

Eighth Samadhi or Fourth Arupa Samadhi
Domain of neither-perception-nor-non-perception, Nevasannanasannnayatana
"Then again (Puna ca paraü) seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), completely (Sabbaso) passing beyond (samatikkama) the domain of no evil (àkiñcaññàyatanaü) near to (upasampajja) limitless (anantaü) volition (viññàõanti) one traverses (viharati) the domain of neither-perception-nor-non-perception (nevasaññànàsaññàyatanaü). It is said (vuccati) this seeker of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu) has blinded ('andhamakàsi) Mara (màraü). Trackless (apadaü) he has destroyed (vadhitvà) Mara's vision (màracakkhuü). He has disappeared from (adassanaü) and surpassed (gato) the Evil One (pàpimato).

Extinction (nirodha) through Samadhi
Cessation, saññá-vedayita-nirodha, Nibanna
"Then again (Puna ca paraü) seekers of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu), completely (Sabbaso) passing beyond the domain of neither-perception-nor-non-perception (nevasaññànàsaññàyatanaü) to complete extinction of sensory experience (saññàvedayitanirodhaü), residing (viharati) within wisdom, having understood his taints through investigation (upasampajja). It is said (vuccati) this seeker of Buddhahood (bhikkhave bhikkhu) has blinded ('andhamakàsi) Mara (màraü). Trackless (apadaü) he has destroyed (vadhitvà) Mara's vision (màracakkhuü). He has disappeared from (adassanaü) and surpassed (gato) the Evil One (pàpimato). Having crossed over, he is unattached in the world. Carefree he walks, carefree he stands, carefree he sits, carefree he lies down. Why is that? Because he has gone beyond the Evil One's range."
Translated from the Pali by Jhananda

Best regards, Jhananda

Crystal Palace

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2010, 05:31:48 AM »
Dear Anand,

Question: How do I know I am practicing correctly?

Firstly, I will advice you to stick primarily to Shamtha for the time being. Secondly, it's quite easy to know whether you are practicing correctly or not.

"The meditator, having taken himself to a secluded spot, bringing mindfulness to the fore, breathes in aware of the entire body, calming the entire body, breathes out aware of the entire body, calming the entire body".

Sit in an upright position. Relax yourself. Breathe in aware of the present moment, and breathe out aware of the present moment. Whatever thoughts come up, accept them. FABRICATE NOTHING. If you're minds wandering away too much, instead of forcing concentration, just accept the fact that your mind is wandering right now. And keep sitting. Make it effortless like the mountain against the wind.

I personally find Jhananda's advice to sit as if you will never get up again very good in this regard. You can try and see if it works for you.

Question: How do I know I am making any progress on the path?

In the beginning, although you do make progress, its rather hard to gauge. That's because the benefits are very subtle. Just check whether the Four Immeasurables are getting ingrained in your behaviour. Even if they are getting ingrained on a tiny, tiny scale, you are making progress. In the very beginning though just use these two yardsticks to know whether you are progressing or not:

1. Whether you are enjoying doing meditation as it is bringing you peace during the time you do it.
2. Whether you have become more calm off the cushion. This one will come into effect very subtly so just look out for the tiniest bit of calm that you see coming in your life, and thats good enough.

If you have any more questions or if this was not clear enough for you, kindly ask.

Warmly,
Crystal Palace
"Abstain from unwholesome actions,
Perform wholesome actions,
Purify your mind"

Buddha

joy

  • Member
Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2010, 07:41:27 AM »
My little experience says that the fruits of meditation which I unable to notice initially are actually being felt by people (close to me) around me.
Joy

Anand

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #8 on: March 29, 2010, 08:20:59 AM »
Hello all.
Thanks a million for your replies.I feel more confident now.
I must say that i truly have become a more calmer person in these four months.Although in a recent incident i got too angry on a person for he was driving recklessly and even bumped into the autorickshaw in which my wife was traveling.I abused him a lot and even slapped him.But after all that i could feel the feeling of regret was so intense like i'd never experienced.I
even thought of going back there and apologize for what i have done.I realized i should not have done what i did.

Even though i have become calmer..i suffer from inferiority complex and sometimes get into situation which are either embarrassing or humiliating.should i gauge my progress by evaluating
my confidence when i deal with people?or will vipassana help me conquer my fear and gain confidence at all?or is it too much to expect?

Please help.

Morning Dew

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2010, 08:46:50 AM »

Even though i have become calmer..i suffer from inferiority complex and sometimes get into situation which are either embarrassing or humiliating.

Please help.

Hi Anand,
I have similar experiance as you do my friend. I too rather react than respond  :)
TIB wrote;
Quote
The difference between a response and a reaction:

•A reaction is habitual, conditioned and automatic: unthought and immediate.
•A response is chosen from recognised and considered options: contemplated, which takes time.

Hello all.
Thanks a million for your replies.I feel more confident now.
I must say that i truly have become a more calmer person in these four month. ... will vipassana help me conquer my fear and gain confidence at all?or is it too much to expect?
Please help.

Of course it will! Actualy as I see it is that we ourselves help ourselves by using tools like Vipassana to get free of fear, anger and any other type of REACTING  :) and become more adjusted to RESPONDING as TIB wrote;
Quote
A basic understanding of meditation is that it:


•firstly calms our body and mind through slowing down our habituated reactions and then;

•allows us to develop insight to undo those habits and instead:

respond to life in a natural un-conditioned manner

But after all that i could feel the feeling of regret was so intense like i'd never experienced.I
even thought of going back there and apologize for what i have done.I realized i should not have done what i did.

Please help.

It feels always good to say I am sorry and I deeply apologise. It is positive that you realise this action was not the best of choices but try not to beat your self over it, rather treat it like any other thought you encounter while in meditation ... the emotion/thought comes up, you notice it and you let go of it and you go back to breathing and relaxing your body/mind. Do not spend much time pondering over it and feeling sorry for what you did. You realised that your reaction was lead by your distracted mind and you go back to breathing.

Quote
When thoughts are coming, what do you do? Go back to the breathing. That's your job. Stopping the thoughts is not your job. It's not part of this teaching. Thoughts are going to come - all you do is just concentrate on the breathing. That's it. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

I think you are doing fine  :)

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
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  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2010, 09:45:16 AM »
Anand,

It is good that this little reflection has helped you see there are real changes. Don't give yourself a hard time my friend and also realise the path is a journey and the scenery will change as you go along. This time you slapped someone who was reckless and felt guilt. Maybe next time or the time after something like this happens the meditation will have developed enough base of calm that you engage that person in conversation about the dangers of their actions. We all move on and:

"Everything changes"

With regards to your sense of inferiority you will continue to gain confidence in yourself as you grow in meditation, become calmer, less reactive and more able to chose how to respond. Seeing yourself grow as a person in this way will work magic for you.

I agree with Morning Dew: you are doing fine my friend. You are aware of changes and calmer and keeping up a solid practice base. Be patient and gentle and compassionate with yourself. This is important because unless you can nurture these qualities in yourself for yourself you will not be able to give them away to others in your interactions with them.

So far from what you report all is going well.

Warmly, in the Dhamma,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

Anand

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2010, 10:23:16 AM »
Thank you all for your replies. :)

unprevadedrapture

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #12 on: April 14, 2010, 03:30:47 AM »
Do you need to accomplish or seek things for happiness?
Do you do things alone that you wouldn't do in front of other people?
Do you intentionally harm any being?
Do you fail to see the good potential in people?
Do you look for resolutions outside yourself?
...
Metu Neter 2

Morning Dew

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2010, 08:55:33 AM »
Hi unprevadedrapture  :)

I don't get this one you posted above  ???

Why intelectualising? Such questions can only create more suffering in an already delusional mind.
The best advice is to sit down and meditate, some things will get sorted out naturally in meditation without actualy being involved mentaly/intelectually.

I am off to meditate what about you?  :)
Remain relaxed  :)

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
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  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #14 on: April 14, 2010, 09:20:33 AM »
Hi unprevadedrapture  :)

I don't get this one you posted above  ???

Why intelectualising? Such questions can only create more suffering in an already delusional mind.

unprevadedrapture is not intellectualising .. he is reflecting on the nature of one's self and life experience. These questions are beneficial ones to ask, principally inspired by the four immeasurables and the single most important question of all: Do you look outside for validation? Or do you look inside for truth?

Warmly,

in the Dhamma,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

unprevadedrapture

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #15 on: April 16, 2010, 12:03:29 AM »
a time for samadhi, and also a time for questioning, investigating, and discerning. they can support each other:  http://abhayagiri.ehclients.com/pdf/books/AjahnMahaBoowaWisdom.pdf

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
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  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #16 on: April 16, 2010, 06:55:05 AM »
a time for samadhi, and also a time for questioning, investigating, and discerning. they can support each other:

Indeed they can, do and actually must:

The defining line between Shamatha and Vipassana is not so much a line as a great big grey cross-over area. Both techniques are part of a whole path that includes much more than meditation. In the initial stages meditation is more Shamatha and slowly transitions to Vipassana. But right from the start Shamtha practice includes Vipassana and at the very end Vipassana practice is still Shamatha.

Calm facilitates insight. > Shamatha leads to Samadhi which allows Vipassana.

Insight facilitates calm. > Vipassana improves and deepens Samadhi.

The object of Shamatha changes from being just the breath to being much more of a total bodymind awareness as one practices and this becomes Vipassana. So ...  you won't need to change technique and start focussing at the nostrils to sit Vipassana.

......

My root teacher, Her Eminence Mindrolling Jetsün Khandro Rinpoche, summed up ten days of intensive (up to 3 four hour talks per day) of Dhamma teachings such that the Dhamma can be distilled to a very simple recipe. She used 29 words. I have added three for a point of clarity:



  • Generosity

  • Avoiding Harm

  • Patience

  • Effort (Discipline / Shila)

  • Meditation (Shamatha, Samadi, Trying to achieve understanding - i.e. Vipassana/insight)



"Combine all five to become wisdom-mind"



“Do not allow arisings to become solid obstacles”.






Her Eminence Mindrolling Jetsün Khandro Rinpoche (some ten years ago - more recent pictures on her website linked above).
« Last Edit: April 16, 2010, 07:43:01 AM by The Irreverent Buddhist »
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alexaquatic

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2010, 07:30:30 PM »
Talking about making progress ... Today, after several weeks of practicing,  was the first time that I felt awareness of my breathing. Before, I always felt like I was controlling the breath or trying too hard to feel it, but today the breathing was just there. It didn't last too long, but it felt like a breakthrough for me... Just wanted to share....

Renze

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    • Ungrounded
    • No hope
Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2010, 08:45:02 PM »
Talking about making progress ... Today, after several weeks of practicing,  was the first time that I felt awareness of my breathing. Before, I always felt like I was controlling the breath or trying too hard to feel it, but today the breathing was just there. It didn't last too long, but it felt like a breakthrough for me... Just wanted to share....

Keep up the good work. You'll know you're on the right track when, after a while during a session, it will feel as if you're observing the breath from a distance. After a while the breath itself becomes pleasurable to observe.

Morning Dew

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Re: how do i know my progress?
« Reply #19 on: April 21, 2010, 09:38:35 AM »
Good man Alexaquatic  :)

NOTE; your mind might try next time to willingly get into that nice state again but by doing so it will only create confusion and restless feeling. Instead when ever you sit state that you are not to Do the meditation but Be the meditation  :)
Meditation is faleproof, we can not fale unless we give up  :)  Be aware of the whole body breathing, do not cling to the breath but observe it the same way you would observe a mountain or a cherry blossom, or any other natural phenomena, just simply be the whitness. No reason to chase your breath  ;)
You are doing great!

Remain relaxed!  :)

 

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