How much courageous effort ?

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purple planet
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How much courageous effort ?

Postby purple planet » Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:50 pm

Lots of times i read about how we should have courageous effort and practice as much as we can - and lots of other times i read that we shouldnt make the "string" to tight - that we should not over work ourselves

how do we know where is the line - on how much effort to put forth ?

for example sleeping how much sleep is actually needed ? how can i really know how much sleep is to much or to little and be sure he got it right

or sometimes i hear that if someone might try to meditate a lot for instance 6 hours in a day he might get frustrated and stop meditating after a few days like that - instead of continuing for a long time - so its better for him to meditate 1 hour each day for a long time than meditate 6 hours a day for a few days - how is he suppose to know when he is over-meditating and is polling the string to "tight" and when he is to relaxed and should put courageous effort ?
Please send merit to my dog named Mika who has passed away - thanks in advance

santa100
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Re: How much courageous effort ?

Postby santa100 » Sun Mar 09, 2014 10:40 pm

General instruction from SN 46.53 and detailed info. from Vism4.45 (page 125: Maintaining balanced faculties)

culaavuso
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Re: How much courageous effort ?

Postby culaavuso » Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:18 pm

purple planet wrote:how do we know where is the line - on how much effort to put forth ?


The answer for this is built in to the definition of right effort. If it gives rise to unwholesome mental states or causes them to continue, then it is not right effort. If it gives rise to wholesome mental states or causes them to continue, then it is.

SN 45.8: Magga-vibhanga Sutta wrote:And what, monks, is right effort?
(i) There is the case where a monk generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the sake of the non-arising of evil, unskillful qualities that have not yet arisen.
(ii) He generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the sake of the abandonment of evil, unskillful qualities that have arisen.
(iii) He generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the sake of the arising of skillful qualities that have not yet arisen.
(iv) He generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the maintenance, non-confusion, increase, plenitude, development, & culmination of skillful qualities that have arisen:
This, monks, is called right effort.


purple planet wrote:for example sleeping how much sleep is actually needed ? how can i really know how much sleep is to much or to little and be sure he got it right

If sleepiness overwhelms awareness and clarity of mind, then more sleep may be beneficial. If craving grows for the sensual pleasure of lying in bed or mental torpor grows from the habit of lying in bed without alertness, then it is harmful.

purple planet wrote: or sometimes i hear that if someone might try to meditate a lot for instance 6 hours in a day he might get frustrated and stop meditating after a few days like that - instead of continuing for a long time - so its better for him to meditate 1 hour each day for a long time than meditate 6 hours a day for a few days - how is he suppose to know when he is over-meditating and is polling the string to "tight" and when he is to relaxed and should put courageous effort ?


When frustration begins to arise, see if something can be done mentally to let go of the cause of the frustration. If the capability of letting go of the frustration is not available and the frustration continues to grow, then stopping the activity that is giving rise to frustration is beneficial. If aversion to meditation is growing, then by being aware of that aversion it may be possible to understand that the aversion is a product of pushing too hard. This is similar to the idea of how to know when to stop with any exercise. Through paying attention to how it feels, it's possible to learn when effort is insufficient for progress, sufficient for progress, or excessive and harmful.

MN 61: Ambalatthika-rahulovada Sutta wrote:While you are doing a mental action, you should reflect on it: 'This mental action I am doing — is it leading to self-affliction, to the affliction of others, or to both? Is it an unskillful mental action, with painful consequences, painful results?' If, on reflection, you know that it is leading to self-affliction, to the affliction of others, or to both... you should give it up. But if on reflection you know that it is not... you may continue with it.

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purple planet
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Re: How much courageous effort ?

Postby purple planet » Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:41 pm

The answer for this is built in to the definition of right effort. If it gives rise to unwholesome mental states or causes them to continue, then it is not right effort. If it gives rise to wholesome mental states or causes them to continue, then it is.


Very intersting :namaste: i know you said this a few times before but i start to understand it better now



(it just can be all so confusing - one monk say one thing the other another thing :?)
Last edited by purple planet on Mon Mar 10, 2014 12:38 am, edited 2 times in total.
Please send merit to my dog named Mika who has passed away - thanks in advance

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Re: How much courageous effort ?

Postby Goofaholix » Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:47 pm

It's persistance and perseverence that is requiredm, not force of willpower.

Every waking moment is an opportunity to practise, so it makes no sense to talk about how many hours or how many days is enough.

It's not about how many hours you spend on the cushion and how hard you push yourself, it's about maintaining awareness as much as possible after you get up off the cushion and carry on with your daily activities. It's about beginning again over and over each time you notice attention has lapsed.
"Proper effort is not the effort to make something particular happen. It is the effort to be aware and awake each moment." - Ajahn Chah
"When we see beyond self, we no longer cling to happiness. When we stop clinging, we can begin to be happy." - Ajahn Chah
"Know and watch your heart. It’s pure but emotions come to colour it." — Ajahn Chah

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purple planet
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Re: How much courageous effort ?

Postby purple planet » Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:54 pm

but to be aware shouldn't i put effort in ?
Please send merit to my dog named Mika who has passed away - thanks in advance

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Goofaholix
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Re: How much courageous effort ?

Postby Goofaholix » Mon Mar 10, 2014 12:00 am

Yes, but the effort is to make it as continuous as possible, the effort is not to force it.

It's a marathon, not a sprint.
"Proper effort is not the effort to make something particular happen. It is the effort to be aware and awake each moment." - Ajahn Chah
"When we see beyond self, we no longer cling to happiness. When we stop clinging, we can begin to be happy." - Ajahn Chah
"Know and watch your heart. It’s pure but emotions come to colour it." — Ajahn Chah


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