How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

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How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Sep 20, 2010 7:16 pm

  • Dana (generous action)
  • Sila (virtue)
  • Nekkhamma (renunciation)
  • Pañña (wisdom, discernment)
  • Viriya (energy, effort)
  • Khanti (patience)
  • Sacca (truthfulness)
  • Adhitthana (determination, resolution)
  • Metta (loving-kindness, goodwill)
  • Upekkha (equanimity)

And of the paramitas, which do you contemplate the most?

I'm pretty big on metta (obviously :D), but lately I've been spending more time with patience and equanimity.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby bodom » Mon Sep 20, 2010 7:58 pm

Hi mettafuture

The ten paramis are a guiding ideal to my practice.

This is my favorite book on the paramis:

A Treatise on the Paramis From the Commentary to the Cariyapitaka by Acariya Dhammapala

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el409.html

:anjali:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Sep 20, 2010 8:21 pm

mettafuture wrote:
  • Dana (generous action)
  • Sila (virtue)
  • Nekkhamma (renunciation)
  • Pañña (wisdom, discernment)
  • Viriya (energy, effort)
  • Khanti (patience)
  • Sacca (truthfulness)
  • Adhitthana (determination, resolution)
  • Metta (loving-kindness, goodwill)
  • Upekkha (equanimity)

And of the paramitas, which do you contemplate the most?

I'm pretty big on metta (obviously :D), but lately I've been spending more time with patience and equanimity.
Rather than contemplating them, practing the Dhamma so as to develop them would be the thing to do, but then I may not be sure what you mean by contemplate.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Sep 20, 2010 8:41 pm

bodom wrote:Hi mettafuture

The ten paramis are a guiding ideal to my practice.

:)

This is my favorite book on the paramis:

A Treatise on the Paramis From the Commentary to the Cariyapitaka by Acariya Dhammapala

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el409.html

:anjali:

I don't think ive read that book before. I will read it tonight.

:namaste:

tiltbillings wrote:Rather than contemplating them, practing the Dhamma so as to develop them would be the thing to do, but then I may not be sure what you mean by contemplate.

By "contemplate them" I mean just being aware of them, and using them to counter unskillful thoughts that may arise. For example: When I'm feeling impatient, I'll remind myself of what the Buddha said about patience.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby Ytrog » Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:26 pm

How would you contemplate, for example, Pañña (wisdom, discernment)?

What is meant by contemplating in this context? thinking about them? Trying to see how well they are developed in yourself? How would one know?

Trying to bring them into your life as a practise is something I can imagine, but what is meant here with contemplating? Sorry if this may seem like a stupid question, but this is something I wanted to ask about for some time.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:54 pm

Ytrog wrote:How would you contemplate, for example, Pañña (wisdom, discernment)?

Probably by reading the Pañña Sutta and then contemplating what the Buddha meant by it.

What is meant by contemplating in this context? thinking about them? Trying to see how well they are developed in yourself?

All of the above.

Trying to bring them into your life as a practise is something I can imagine

That would likely work too.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby Individual » Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:54 pm

mettafuture wrote:
  • Dana (generous action)
  • Sila (virtue)
  • Nekkhamma (renunciation)
  • Pañña (wisdom, discernment)
  • Viriya (energy, effort)
  • Khanti (patience)
  • Sacca (truthfulness)
  • Adhitthana (determination, resolution)
  • Metta (loving-kindness, goodwill)
  • Upekkha (equanimity)

And of the paramitas, which do you contemplate the most?

I'm pretty big on metta (obviously :D), but lately I've been spending more time with patience and equanimity.

All the friggin' time fortunately and unfortunately -- although not by those names.

Some more than others.
The best things in life aren't things.

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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Sep 20, 2010 10:17 pm

Individual wrote:All the friggin' time fortunately and unfortunately -- although not by those names.

Some more than others.

:D

To stay in-tune with the paramitas, I'll occasionally ask myself...
  • Am I being generous?
  • Am I being virtuous?
  • Is there something unneeded in my life that can be renounced?
  • Am I being wise in my choices and thoughts?
  • Am I putting in enough energy and effort?
  • Am I being patient?
  • Am I being honest?
  • Am I determined?
  • Am I treating others with loving-kindness?
  • Are my thoughts even and unbiased?
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby Individual » Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:03 pm

mettafuture wrote:
Individual wrote:All the friggin' time fortunately and unfortunately -- although not by those names.

Some more than others.

:D

To stay in-tune with the paramitas, I'll occasionally ask myself...
  • Am I being generous?
  • Am I being virtuous?
  • Is there something unneeded in my life that can be renounced?
  • Am I being wise in my choices and thoughts?
  • Am I putting in enough energy and effort?
  • Am I being patient?
  • Am I being honest?
  • Am I determined?
  • Am I treating others with loving-kindness?
  • Are my thoughts even and unbiased?

All of those things, really? That's a lot. With me, it's more of a general sense of, "Am I doing the right thing?" A guilt about my morality that peaks right after I wake up and right before I go to bed.

And in specific situations, too, I dwell on whether I'm being considerate to others.

Immediately after yelling or getting into an argument, I tend to self-reflect on why what I did probably wasn't necessary, but it's not like you can scream at somebody and apologize 5 seconds later, because that seems a bit crazy, huh?

I used to think about how great it would be, every night before going to sleep (as a bit of a nightly ritual) if everybody in the world was happy. I still do this sometimes, but I do it spontaneously when I feel particularly moved, because I would only rather do it sincerely, and I honestly don't feel Buddha-like compassion all the time, because honestly quite a lot of the time I don't really care about others' happiness.
The best things in life aren't things.

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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:10 pm

Individual wrote:All of those things, really?

Not all at once, but when circumstances call for them...

That's a lot. With me, it's more of a general sense of, "Am I doing the right thing?"

But what is the 'right thing'? The 10 Parmitas present one of many ways a person can remind themselves of what the right thing is.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Sep 21, 2010 12:35 am

Greetings Mettafuture,

In my case, it's only when I'm reading about them.

This particular list doesn't mean much to me, as the Buddha himself devised many lists and the "ten paramitas" was not one of them. This particular paramita listing is a commentarial device, seemingly co-opted/adapted from Mahayana Buddhism.

To that end, I find lists such the Noble Eightfold Path to be more useful and direct (since I do not strive to follow a bodhisattva path).

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


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One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby Kim OHara » Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:07 am

Hi, mettafuture,
I'm with retro on this, though perhaps for slightly different reasons: your list overlaps almost completely with the 8FP and the four Brahmaviharas (as it should, if the main messages are going to be consistent from one part of the dhamma to another), and those lists are more familiar ad therefore easier to call to mind.
:namaste:
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby mettafuture » Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:41 am

I guess it's a matter of personal preference.

Although the 10 paramitas can be considered a commentarial device, I've found that they do a nice job at bringing some key points from the 8-fold path and the 4 brahma-viharas together into a single list. Of course we should place the 8-fold path and 4 noble truths at the top, but, personally, I don't believe the wisdom that can be found in some of the commentaries should be entirely dismissed.
Last edited by mettafuture on Tue Sep 21, 2010 2:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:54 am

Greetings Mettafuture,

mettafuture wrote: I don't believe the some of the wisdom that can be found in the commentaries should be entirely dismissed.

Likewise. It is possible to not practice something, without having to be explicitly against it, or dismissive of it. Then again, it's good to not falsely believe that Buddha explicitly taught it either.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby mettafuture » Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:55 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mettafuture,

mettafuture wrote: I don't believe the some of the wisdom that can be found in the commentaries should be entirely dismissed.

Likewise. It is possible to not practice something, without having to be explicitly against it, or dismissive of it. Then again, it's good to not falsely believe that Buddha explicitly taught it either.

Metta,
Retro. :)

I agree.

:toast:
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby Individual » Tue Sep 21, 2010 3:20 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mettafuture,

mettafuture wrote: I don't believe the some of the wisdom that can be found in the commentaries should be entirely dismissed.

Likewise. It is possible to not practice something, without having to be explicitly against it, or dismissive of it. Then again, it's good to not falsely believe that Buddha explicitly taught it either.

Metta,
Retro. :)

But you did dismiss it by implying it's less useful and less direct.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby manas » Tue Sep 21, 2010 3:29 am

...
Last edited by manas on Tue Sep 21, 2010 3:37 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Sep 21, 2010 3:33 am

Greetings Individual,

Individual wrote:But you did dismiss it by implying it's less useful and less direct.

Less direct in the sense of paramitas being used in order to follow the bodhisatta path and other related paths not depicted in the suttas.

If your intended goal is arahantship or stream-entry, paramita cultivation is less direct (i.e. taking aeons) and therefore less useful.

It's a case of something being "fit for purpose"... not of blanket dismissal.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby Ben » Tue Sep 21, 2010 3:40 am

tiltbillings wrote:Rather than contemplating them, practing the Dhamma so as to develop them would be the thing to do.

Sadhu!
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Re: How often do you contemplate the 10 Paramitas?

Postby Ytrog » Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:14 am

mettafuture wrote:
Individual wrote:All the friggin' time fortunately and unfortunately -- although not by those names.

Some more than others.

:D

To stay in-tune with the paramitas, I'll occasionally ask myself...
  • Am I being generous?
  • Am I being virtuous?
  • Is there something unneeded in my life that can be renounced?
  • Am I being wise in my choices and thoughts?
  • Am I putting in enough energy and effort?
  • Am I being patient?
  • Am I being honest?
  • Am I determined?
  • Am I treating others with loving-kindness?
  • Are my thoughts even and unbiased?


If this is meant with it, then yes. A lot. :)
Suffering is asking from life what it can never give you.


mindfulness, bliss and beyond (page 8) wrote:Do not linger on the past. Do not keep carrying around coffins full of dead moments


If you see any unskillful speech (or other action) from me let me know, so I can learn from it.
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