Freawaru wrote: porpoise wrote:
I'm not getting the difference between these two aspects of mindfulness. Can anyone explain it simply?
I agree to everything tilt and IanAnd said on this thread.
To elaborate further so you can recognise "bare attention" when it happens (or maybe it already has): it is not something humans normally experience. When it happens first time it is possible that it happens naturally (due to the usual reason: extended practice during previous lives), it can happen during states of concentration - one of the reasons we practice concentration, and it can be developed by "noting" as in the Mahasi teachings. . . .So the appearance of sati-sampajanna separates the mind into two parts: the normal mind stream of whatever state one is in and the monitoring awareness.
With all due respect, Freawaru, I think you have just succeeded in complicating this process even more than it needs to be complicated with your attempt
to add clarification.
For anyone reading her post and attempting to make any sense out of it, please be aware that her description of this "experience" (which is how this explanation comes across, as being some kind of mysterious experience that so-called normal people don't have, implying that you need to be some kind of practitioner in order to "experience" it) is only indicative of her
subjective perception of how this occurred for her
. It has nothing to do with how most of the rest of us arrived at these insights. And that's all this is: it is an insight into how your mind works to influence the way you think about a subject or topic. And anyone at any time has the ability to gain insight into this process. You just have to be watching for it. That's all. There is nothing mysterious about it at all.
The ability to pay "bare" attention to an object or subject is an internal decision that one becomes aware of. It is not something that just "happens" mysteriously out of the blue. You choose
to do it, and to be aware of the movements of the mind. Period.
I recall times being aware of making these choices when I was a child, way before
I ever became involved in meditation practice at all. What happened between the time when I was younger and later on when my mind was coming to knee-jerk reactions not based on the reality in its actuality was the conditioning of the mind to give more credence to the knee-jerk reaction, rather than to consider the actual facts involved. In those later years, it was a matter of simply becoming unconscious of these moments when they were occurring. Meditation practice helps you to regain a "presence of mind" so that you do not let the subconscious mind transact its conditioned reaction pattern. Which means becoming aware of the pattern itself and subduing the mind from reacting. (Actually, just becoming aware of how the mind is processing the information in a moment like this will subdue it naturally. You really don't have to make an effort
to subdue it.)
The other part of this "clarification" that is problematical in terms of the concepts it may imply to the inexperienced reader is the last part where "sati-sampajanna" supposedly "separates the mind into two parts." Now, to be fair, I realize that Freawaru is attempting to explain what she's referring to in a way that will communicate the ideas she want's to get across to the reader and how she may currently experience this process. However, her choice of metaphors here leaves something to be desired, and is not even close to being an accurate description.
The achievement of sati-sampajanna
does not "separate the mind into two parts." The achievement of sati-sampajanna
implies an intensity of clarity
to what may have once been described as one's "normal" conscious awareness. The difference is that this "normal conscious awareness" was not mindful enough to discern the nuances that a clear and mindful mind is able to observe. The point she's attempting to make here is that the mind, having achieved sati-sampajanna
, is more intently aware of phenomena (both internal — meaning conceptually in how the mind processes information both in the present moment and from memory — and external — implying the physical aspects of phenomena occurring) and the effect that that phenomena is having on the perceptive ability of the mind to discern reality in the correct way or manner. An untrained mind may not be clear and mindful enough to see these nuances with any real clarity.
As people's individual practice matures, they will be able to confirm for themselves the corrections presented here.
"The gift of truth exceeds all other gifts" — Dhammapada, v. 354 Craving XXIV