Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

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Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Mon Jul 12, 2010 1:28 pm

Is anyone able / willing to describe in a nutshell what the difference is between the approach described in these 2 suttas? A significant point of divergence seems to be that the 4th foundation in Satipatthana is concerned with mindfulness of mental objects, as compared to contemplation of impermanence etc in the 4th tetrad of Anapanasati.
Or are the differences much more fundamental?

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Reductor » Mon Jul 12, 2010 3:35 pm

The sattipathana describes a more conceptual form of contemplation while anapanasati describes a much more 'absolute' form of contemplation - that is, there is little room for conceptualization.

They can be mutually helpful. Anapanasati to calm the mind, then a focused contempation of a sattipathana execercise. I find that contemplation of the 32 parts, after an initial period of breathing, can yield surprising levels of deeper concentration and understanding. Or they can be done in reverse, starting with the 32 parts to bring calm before going to the breath.

IMO it is not that useful to place these two forms of meditation into little 'boxes'. To do so cuts off a lot of productive avenues for calm and insight coming from implementing a combination of them.
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

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To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Kenshou » Tue Jul 13, 2010 7:03 am

And also, there happens to be a section of the Anapanasati sutta itself dedicated to showing how the development of anapanasati can develop satipatthana, too.
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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby jcsuperstar » Tue Jul 13, 2010 9:05 am

according to the Buddha anapanasati is satipatthana
"This is how mindfulness of in-&-out breathing is developed & pursued so as to bring the four frames of reference to their culmination.

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

and if you read the satipatthana sutta the instructions for practicing are pretty much exactly as in the anapanasati sutta
"There is the case where a monk — having gone to the wilderness, to the shade of a tree, or to an empty building — sits down folding his legs crosswise, holding his body erect and setting mindfulness to the fore [lit: the front of the chest]. Always mindful, he breathes in; mindful he breathes out.

"Breathing in long, he discerns that he is breathing in long; or breathing out long, he discerns that he is breathing out long. Or breathing in short, he discerns that he is breathing in short; or breathing out short, he discerns that he is breathing out short. He trains himself to breathe in sensitive to the entire body and to breathe out sensitive to the entire body. He trains himself to breathe in calming bodily fabrication and to breathe out calming bodily fabrication. Just as a skilled turner or his apprentice, when making a long turn, discerns that he is making a long turn, or when making a short turn discerns that he is making a short turn; in the same way the monk, when breathing in long, discerns that he is breathing in long; or breathing out short, he discerns that he is breathing out short... He trains himself to breathe in calming bodily fabrication, and to breathe out calming bodily fabrication.

"In this way he remains focused internally on the body in & of itself, or externally on the body in & of itself, or both internally & externally on the body in & of itself. Or he remains focused on the phenomenon of origination with regard to the body, on the phenomenon of passing away with regard to the body, or on the phenomenon of origination & passing away with regard to the body. Or his mindfulness that 'There is a body' is maintained to the extent of knowledge & remembrance. And he remains independent, unsustained by (not clinging to) anything in the world. This is how a monk remains focused on the body in & of itself.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.010.than.html
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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:07 am

thereductor wrote:The sattipathana describes a more conceptual form of contemplation while anapanasati describes a much more 'absolute' form of contemplation - that is, there is little room for conceptualization.


Interesting observation - could you say a bit more about what you mean by "absolute" form of contemplation - you mean more experiential?

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Fri Jul 16, 2010 1:06 pm

thereductor wrote:IMO it is not that useful to place these two forms of meditation into little 'boxes'. To do so cuts off a lot of productive avenues for calm and insight coming from implementing a combination of them.


I'm not sure how well these 2 approaches actually combine though. It feels to me like the method is basically different.

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Sobeh » Fri Jul 16, 2010 3:49 pm

I always got the impression that the Satipatthana was rather a template; anapanasati and kayagatasati both "fulfill" satipatthana, which means there is a method whereby in all four postures sammasati can be practiced, but otherwise the Satipatthana Sutta is itself not a useful teaching on meditation, but rather a useful measure of various meditation teachings. In other words, if I am taught a meditation that does not fulfill satipatthana, then I ought to discard the meditation as being less useful to me than anapana-/kayagata-sati, since those fulfill it perfectly.
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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Reductor » Fri Jul 16, 2010 6:57 pm

porpoise wrote:Interesting observation - could you say a bit more about what you mean by "absolute" form of contemplation - you mean more experiential?

P

I'm not sure how well these 2 approaches actually combine though. It feels to me like the method is basically different.

P


Well, I'm not the greatest communicator on the forum, so pardon my word choices. :tongue:

I called anapanasati more 'absolute' in that there is much less mental activity and that the meditation is an observation of a self maintaining object.

Compare this to the 32 part contemplation. In the 32 parts contemplation you have to mentally call each part to mind and maintain the mental impression. The object is mentally crafted by the meditator rather then always present and simply observed. This process is even more pronounced with the 9 charnel ground contemplations, for example.

I see the satipatthana (MN 10) as more of a summary/collection of the various lines of contemplations taught by the Buddha. When any of them are taken up by the meditator they can be used to observe one or more frames of reference.

Also keep in mind that anapanasati is included under the BODY foundation. If the Buddha meant for the satipatthana and anapanasati to be taken up separately then such an inclusion would be very perplexing.

"...a bhikkhu should, in addition, maintain in being these four things. Loathsomeness (as the repulsive aspect of the body) should be maintained in being for the purpose of abandoning lust; loving-kindness for the purpose of abandoning ill will; mindfulness of breathing for the purpose of cutting off discursive thoughts; perception of impermanence for the purpose of eliminating the conceit "I am."
Udana 4:1

Here the Buddha recommends two objects from the BODY foundation in the same exhortation. In this case they serve different function and are mutually supportive. A similar list is found in MN 62, directed at the Buddha's son.

As others have noted, anapanasati is said to fulfill the four foundations. It is not the only line of contemplation outside of MN10 that does that. In MN 140 the Buddha discusses at length the development of insight in relation to Elements, Feeling and Mind, relating them all the the Truth and release. It is a pretty interesting development.

Anyway, I'm rattling on here so I'll stop.

I would invite any of the satipatthana experts to chime in.
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:53 am

Sobeh wrote:I always got the impression that the Satipatthana was rather a template; anapanasati and kayagatasati both "fulfill" satipatthana, which means there is a method whereby in all four postures sammasati can be practiced, but otherwise the Satipatthana Sutta is itself not a useful teaching on meditation, but rather a useful measure of various meditation teachings.


Interesting view. I sometimes wonder whether Satipatthana is basically a series of exercises for maintaining mindfulness, rather than a template for meditation.

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:57 am

thereductor wrote:
porpoise wrote:Also keep in mind that anapanasati is included under the BODY foundation. If the Buddha meant for the satipatthana and anapanasati to be taken up separately then such an inclusion would be very perplexing.


For sure. But I'm trying to compare the overall method described in the Satipatthana Sutta with the overall method described in the Anapanasati Sutta. To me the first seems more concerned with mindfulness, the second more concerned with samadhi. I think both methods can be used as a basis for insight but would appreciate your views on this.

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:58 am

thereductor wrote:
porpoise wrote:In MN 140 the Buddha discusses at length the development of insight in relation to Elements, Feeling and Mind, relating them all the the Truth and release. It is a pretty interesting development.



Yes, I've had some experience of that. It seems quite conceptual though.

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Reductor » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:27 am

porpoise wrote:For sure. But I'm trying to compare the overall method described in the Satipatthana Sutta with the overall method described in the Anapanasati Sutta. To me the first seems more concerned with mindfulness, the second more concerned with samadhi. I think both methods can be used as a basis for insight but would appreciate your views on this.

P


If you find it helpful to assign general mindfulness to the methods of satipatthana and samadhi to the method of anapanasati, then go for it. But I find that the difference between a general state of mindfulness and that of samadhi is only in degree. In a generalized state of sati the attention moves here and there between objects of the sense bases. Samadhi also has sati, but the attention becomes fixed on a much smaller subset of objects.

Same components are involved in both activities, the difference lies in how they are used.

So, can mindfulness of the posture yield samadhi? I feel that it can if practiced often. If that is found to be the case, then what does that do to your distinction?

Now, can anapanasati and satipatthana both yield insight? Yes, I would say so. In both cases the four frames of reference are being attended to by mindfulness and alertness, and in both cases the meditator must be "ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world." MN10 and MN118.

"There is the case where a monk remains focused on the body in & of itself — ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world. He remains focused on feelings... mind... mental qualities in & of themselves — ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world." MN10

"Mindfulness of in-&-out breathing, when developed & pursued, is of great fruit, of great benefit. Mindfulness of in-&-out breathing, when developed & pursued, brings the four frames of reference to their culmination. The four frames of reference, when developed & pursued, bring the seven factors for awakening to their culmination. The seven factors for awakening, when developed & pursued, bring clear knowing & release to their culmination." MN118


Both MN10 and MN118 require the mind to make use of the same faculties, if slightly differently. If you do assign MN10 the designation 'generalized sati' and MN118 as 'samadhi' then can they can both be said to yield insight? Yes, although the exact means differ.

"In this way he remains focused internally on the body in & of itself, or externally on the body in & of itself, or both internally & externally on the body in & of itself. Or he remains focused on the phenomenon of origination with regard to the body, on the phenomenon of passing away with regard to the body, or on the phenomenon of origination & passing away with regard to the body. Or his mindfulness that 'There is a body' is maintained to the extent of knowledge & remembrance. And he remains independent, unsustained by (not clinging to) anything in the world. This is how a monk remains focused on the body in & of itself. [and phrase is then repeated for each frame]
....

Now, if anyone would develop these four frames of reference in this way for seven years, one of two fruits can be expected for him: either gnosis right here & now, or — if there be any remnant of clinging/sustenance — non-return.


compare the bolded parts of the above to those below:
[13] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on inconstancy.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on inconstancy.' [14] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on dispassion [literally, fading].' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on dispassion.' [15] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on cessation.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on cessation.' [16] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in focusing on relinquishment.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out focusing on relinquishment.'

...

This is how the seven factors for awakening are developed & pursued so as to bring clear knowing & release to their culmination.



In the quote directly above keep in mind that anapanasati is said (in MN118) to bring the four frames to fulfillment, which brings the seven factors to fulfillment.

All this suggest to me anapanasati and satipatthana yield the same results and the emphasis in both the insight stage of satipatthana and anapanasati is the changing nature of the frames of reference. To be sure, the minutest details laid out in MN10 can be seen as differing from MN118, but in both cases the trend is to stablize the mind and then be aware of change (arising and passing away as in MN10 or inconstancy in MN118). In both cases the return on effort is knowledge and release.

As a final note on the use of samadhi for insight:

The Blessed One said, "Monks, Sariputta is wise, of great discernment, deep discernment, wide... joyous... rapid... quick... penetrating discernment. For half a month, Sariputta clearly saw insight[1] into mental qualities one after another. This is what occurred to Sariputta through insight into mental qualities one after another:

"There was the case where Sariputta — quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities — entered & remained in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. Whatever qualities there are in the first jhana — directed thought, evaluation, rapture, pleasure, singleness of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness,[2] desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity, & attention — he ferreted them out one after another. Known to him they arose, known to him they remained, known to him they subsided. He discerned, 'So this is how these qualities, not having been, come into play. Having been, they vanish.' He remained unattracted & unrepelled with regard to those qualities, independent, detached, released, dissociated, with an awareness rid of barriers. He discerned that 'There is a further escape,' and pursuing it there really was for him.
MN 111

Please compare the emboldened parts above to the final steps of anapanasati.

Now, I am not completely dense, however. I know that when you speak of mindfulness you are referencing that very movement of attention that the satipatthana seems to allow. Correct? My point is anapanasati as in MN118 is an elaboration of an exercise prescribed in MN10.. it is not truly distinct from satipatthana. If this notion of 'this is satipatthana and this is something else altogether' then we fail to see how this general mindfulness and the strong samadhi of anapanasati are mutually supportive.

Does any of this address, in any way, your inquiry?

Sometimes I lose the plot, so to speak. ;)

To address you comment about MN140 seeming pretty 'conceptual' I would counter that all of what the Buddha sounds conceptual. If he didn't conceptualize it for his audience, then how could he have taught it. However, the seeing of the truth is not conceptual at the time, but becomes 'conceptual' in the sense that the practitioners views change in line with what is seen. From then on he refers to this view when interacting with the world.

Have a good day.
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Kenshou » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:45 am

MN 111

Please compare the emboldened parts above to the final steps of anapanasati.


Oh dang, I never made that connection. Neat.
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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Sun Jul 18, 2010 2:04 pm

[quote="thereductor] To be sure, the minutest details laid out in MN10 can be seen as differing from MN118, but in both cases the trend is to stablize the mind and then be aware of change (arising and passing away as in MN10 or inconstancy in MN118). In both cases the return on effort is knowledge and release.

[/quote]

Thanks for your full reply. :smile:
The description of the 4 frames of reference in MN118 looked to me quite different from the way they're described in MN10, however I'll go back and look more closely. I've been using MN10 as a basis for ( meditation ) practice for about a year, and found it a useful support to general mindfulness. More recently I've been looking at the method in MN118 and trying to understand the commonalites and differences with MN10. All this will hopefully become clearer after a period of practicing in the MN118 way. :smile:

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:44 pm

hi
Each of the 16 steps in MN118 are grouped into fours and corespond to the four tetrads of satipatthana, the teachings are different in as much as they are focusing on means to practice these tetrads, to the fullest extent in specific context, however, they correspond directly with each other, and can be used in unison to practice, Anapanasati is actually telling us what to follow in the tetrads of the satipatthana (within the 16 steps part atleast,) satipatthana is telling us that everything that is present should be looked at in a specific way in order to understand and let go of it.

as for the arising and passing away/inconsistency wordings in the different suttas, these are the same thing. anicca, everything that arises, passes away, all things are not sure, inconsistent, unreliable, changing, mortal - not immortal, conditioned.

anyway not sure I will be able to get back on for a little while so hope this helped.
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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Reductor » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:19 pm

porpoise wrote:Thanks for your full reply. :smile:
The description of the 4 frames of reference in MN118 looked to me quite different from the way they're described in MN10, however I'll go back and look more closely. I've been using MN10 as a basis for ( meditation ) practice for about a year, and found it a useful support to general mindfulness. More recently I've been looking at the method in MN118 and trying to understand the commonalites and differences with MN10. All this will hopefully become clearer after a period of practicing in the MN118 way. :smile:

P


The only places in the canon where the four frames of reference are spelled out in the manor of MN10 are MN10 and DN22. These two sutta-s are in fact the same discourse, but with a little extra at the end of DN22.

Usually the four frames of reference are only loosely described as body, feeling, mind, and objects... little more detail as to which each of those actually means is included (SN 47.40). However in other places we learn that there are 18 classes of feeling and that the body (rupa) is said to be composed of the four great elements: earth, wind, fire and water... and you can toss in space for good measure if you like.

The 18 classes of feeling are good, bad, neutral x the 6 sense bases. All are marked by the three characteristics. The body and the elements it is composed of are marked the same way.

The mind frame suggests, to me, the general mental tone that the mind is marked by. If the most of the feelings and perceptions involve lust, then the mind is said to be a mind affected by lust. If the feelings and perceptions are mostly hate, then the mind is marked by hate. So on and so forth. But the mind, however it is marked, also falls to the three characteristics.

The fourth frame of reference is often called mind-object frame. But, I think it can be seen in the wider context of all five frames of reference. That is, each group of objects refers to a particular configuration of the aggregates as they stand. When coupled with this from MN10:

"Or, there being no sensual desire present within, he discerns that 'There is no sensual desire present within me.' He discerns how there is the arising of unarisen sensual desire. And he discerns how there is the abandoning of sensual desire once it has arisen. And he discerns how there is no future arising of sensual desire that has been abandoned"


We see that we as meditators must also be aware of dependent origination when we're being mindful so we see what causes a hindrance, for example, and what does not. DO and the three marks all point to same thing: conditioning, change, uncertainty in the five aggregates.

Many of the mind object lists have similar clauses to that for the hindrances quoted above.

So, when you say that the approach of anapanasati to the frames seems different than that of the satipatthana, that could be taken as correct. One has a single main object, the other suggests more than one. But the four frames of reference all refer back to the five aggregates, DO and the three characteristics.

By mixing the satipatthana and the anapanasati we gain one thing: continuity of mindfulness and concentration during a single sitting. Then when we sit down to meditate we are effectively practicing all eight of the eight fold path at the same time instead of treating them as disjointed practices not closely connected to one another.

Anyway... talk later.
Michael

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Reductor » Mon Jul 19, 2010 5:53 am

thereductor wrote:The fourth frame of reference is often called mind-object frame. But, I think it can be seen in the wider context of all five frames of reference. That is, each group of objects refers to a particular configuration of the aggregates as they stand. When coupled with this from MN10:


EDIT: oops, that should be five aggregates. Tsk tsk! Sloppy. :tongue:
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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Spiny Norman » Sat Jul 24, 2010 9:42 am

I've tried to do a basic comparison of the 4 frames of reference in MN118 and MN10 and would be interested in your observations.

1. BODY: MN118 focuses on mindfulness of breathing, aimed at calming the bodily formations. MN10 adds a range of mindfulness exercises for the whole body, and contemplations on foulness, death and bodily impermanence.

2. FEELINGS: MN118 focuses on using piti and sukha to calm the mind. MN10 is concerned more generally with developing mindfulness of feelings.

3. MIND: MN118 focuses on concentrating the mind and dissolving attachment. MN10 is concerned more generally with awareness of mind state. Both suttas include mindfulness of the 3 taints.

4. MIND OBJECTS: MN118 focuses on experiencing impermanence and dissolving attachment. MN10 includes a range of contemplations about mind objects and how they arise, also contemplations on teachings like the 4NT.
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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Reductor » Sun Jul 25, 2010 6:55 am

porpoise wrote:I've tried to do a basic comparison of the 4 frames of reference in MN118 and MN10 and would be interested in your observations.

1. BODY: MN118 focuses on mindfulness of breathing, aimed at calming the bodily formations. MN10 adds a range of mindfulness exercises for the whole body, and contemplations on foulness, death and bodily impermanence.


MN118 does aim at calming bodily formations with the breath, however the experience of bodily change is brought to the forefront of the mind in the process. Bodily impermenance is evident, as is the frailty of the body and its relationship with the act of breathing. Let us not forget the nearness to death present in the breath. The relationship of the breath to the physical body is telling of what existence actually is.

Putting that aside, it is interesting to note that the MN10 includes under the body such indirect contemplations of the body as the 32 parts and charnel ground contemplation. Bodhi, I think, noted that the wording of MN10 suggested an imaginative quality, which precludes the need for the meditator to stand over a decaying body while performing this contemplation.

I'm thinking that the arising and falling of the body, and especially the dissolution, are such temporally drawn out processes that these imaginative additions are necessary. Otherwise there would be very large aspects of the body's nature unaddressed and unseen by the meditator.

The first three exercises under this heading are very concrete, while the last three are not. It is an interesting mix.

2. FEELINGS: MN118 focuses on using piti and sukha to calm the mind. MN10 is concerned more generally with developing mindfulness of feelings.


It is fair to say that piti and sukha function to calm the mind further. But keep in mind that they are born in part from the previous tranquilizing of body. An important value they hold is that, as they become manifest, they stabilize the mind so that the hindrances thus abandoned do not re-emerge. Hence their import in the standard jhana definitions.

You are correct that MN10 is more general in its description of feelings, but I would like to share a couple observations about this. First, MN10 says "When feeling a pleasant feeling of the flesh, he discerns that he is feeling a pleasant feeling of the flesh. When feeling a pleasant feeling not of the flesh, he discerns that he is feeling a pleasant feeling not of the flesh."

There is a distinction made between flesh feelings and what is not flesh (mental feelings).

While in MN118 we see "[3] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to the entire body.'[2] He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to the entire body.' [4] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in calming bodily fabrication.'[3] He trains himself, 'I will breathe out calming bodily fabrication.'

"[5] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to rapture.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to rapture.' [6] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to pleasure.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to pleasure.'"


It is my opinion that step 2 closely corresponds to MN10 "feeling of the flesh" while steps 5 and 6 closely correspond to "feelings not of the flesh". I have seen rapture translated variously as "enthusiastic joy" or simply as "joy", among others; meanwhile sukha has been translated as "happiness of body" or "happiness". In my practice I would assign to these words the status of "feeling not of the flesh" which do, however, augment the experience of "feelings of the flesh". I do not make a sharp distinction between the flesh feelings and the feelings not of flesh.

...

And I'll call that good for this hour (1 am for me). I would like to answer the other two frames tomorrow, if that is alright. Besides, I need a little more time to ponder. :)
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Re: Satipathhana v. Anapanasati

Postby Reductor » Mon Jul 26, 2010 6:12 am

porpoise wrote:3. MIND: MN118 focuses on concentrating the mind and dissolving attachment. MN10 is concerned more generally with awareness of mind state. Both suttas include mindfulness of the 3 taints.


MN10 lists the positive and negative states of mind that might be seen in the meditator. The negative are those associated with the hindrances, while the positive are those of jhana. Of course some of the positive qualities occur outside of jhana, but the negative qualities do not occur inside of jhana.

As with the MN10 frame three when compared to MN118 frame three, the fourth frame from of MN118 is concerned strictly with increasing positive qualities. Little is mentioned of the negative, but the negative qualities are implied as having been previously abandoned.

I am not sure that it is correct to say that this frame in MN118 is about dissolving attachment, as I think that process rightly belongs to the fourth frame. However, this frame indicates the shifting quality of mind from the sense sphere to the form and formless spheres (to use a little commentary lingo). Basically it is concerned with noting the refinement of the mind (in MN10) and about purifying the mind to its utmost (MN118).

One quote that came to mind was from DN2, and it is oft quoted (for good reason): "Seeing that they [hindrances] have been abandoned within him, he becomes glad. Glad, he becomes enraptured. Enraptured, his body grows tranquil. His body tranquil, he is sensitive to pleasure. Feeling pleasure, his mind becomes concentrated."

In the first tetrad of MN118 the meditator is abandoning the hindrances. We could say that steps 1 and 2 concern abandonment of lust and hate, while step 3 closely corresponds to abandonment of sloth and torpor, and step 4 abandons any remaining restlessness... then, when the meditator realizes that these negative states have been abandoned in him there arises step 5 and 6, which prevent the re-emergence of the hindrances.

The result is that, as the mind becomes more stable, the meditator has becomes aware of the establishment and growth of positive mind states. So, during practice there is observation of how the mind becomes more refined, which I think is a key point of MN10 frame three.

...

On to the last one. Boy, I hope you're having as much fun as me. :D
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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