Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

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Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby salaatti » Fri Oct 02, 2009 12:49 pm

In Anapanasati Sutta there is passage which is often translated differently.
Here is the passage: (this is from Bahnte Vimaralamsi's booklet "The Bare-Bones Instructions to "Mindfulness of Breathing")

"Here a monk, gone to the forest or to the root of a tree or to an empty hut, sits down; having folded
his legs crosswise, set his body erect, and establishes
mindfulness in front of him, ever mindful he breathes
in, mindful he breathes out."

another one (http://www.tipitaka.org/stp-pali-eng-parallel):
"Here a monk, having gone into the forest, or to the foot of a tree, or to an empty room, sits down cross-legged, keeps his body upright and fixes his awareness in the area around the mouth. With this awareness, he breathes in, with this awareness, he breathes out."

And Gil Fronsdal, when he reads the sutta and explains the part with the darkened font.

"and (he) establishes minfulness infront of him. This means that you establish mindfulness here and now, in your own physical presence, in your on own presence. "In front" can also mean area of mouth and it can also mean chest, it means what is here"

So first of all, which interpration/translation is correct? Neither Bhante Vimalaramsi or Gil Fronsdal teach to focus on nostrils or area of mout (or abdomen for that matter)
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby Jechbi » Fri Oct 02, 2009 3:51 pm

I think this is it, from here: http://www.ahandfulofleaves.com/magga/B ... tation.htm

‘‘Kathaṃ bhāvitā ca, bhikkhave, ānāpānassati kathaṃ bahulīkatā mahapphalā hoti mahānisaṃsā?
“And how monks, is this mindfulness of in and out breathing practiced and developed to bring great fruit and great advantage?”

Idha, bhikkhave, bhikkhu araññagato vā rukkhamūlagato vā suññāgāragato vā
“Monks, there is a monk who has gone to the wilderness, or has gone to the root of a tree, or has gone to an empty house,”

nisīdati pallaṅkaṃ ābhujitvā ujuṃ kāyaṃ paṇidhāya parimukhaṃ satiṃ upaṭṭhapetvā.
“Sitting crossed-legged, with body straight and keeping his mindfulness set forward,”

So satova assasati satova passasati.
“With mindfulness, he breathes in; with mindfulness he breathes out.”

Corrections welcome. I can't verify the accuracy.
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Oct 02, 2009 4:26 pm

I have had a look at this a little while ago, the bit you have made bold, is refering to both openings (nose and mouth) wherever or which ever part we breath in and out of, the actual enterence and exit of the air is being refered to as far as I can tell.
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby louhi » Fri Oct 02, 2009 4:28 pm

.
Last edited by louhi on Wed Oct 27, 2010 7:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby Jechbi » Fri Oct 02, 2009 4:40 pm

Looks like this is also being discussed elsewhere. From a different board:
Chris wrote:Here are links to the Sattipathana Sutta and the Ananapansati Sutta. There is no more support for watching the breath at the nostril, or chest, than there is for the abdomen. It depends on the 'take' of the particular Bhikkhu teacher/translator.

Satipatthana Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.010.nysa.html
Anapanasati Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn...8.than.html#t-1

Note 1: (Thanissaro' s take) To the fore (parimukham): The Abhidhamma takes an etymological approach to this term, defining it as around (pari-) the mouth (mukham). In the Vinaya, however, it is used in a context (Cv.V.27.4) where it undoubtedly means the front of the chest. There is also the possibility that the term could be used idiomatically as "to the front," which is how I have translated it here.
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby Dmytro » Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:41 pm

Hello,

Here's a detailed study of this term:

http://www.lioncity.net/buddhism/index. ... opic=21109

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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby salaatti » Sat Oct 03, 2009 11:55 am

I'm just more confused now. Did the Buddha mention area of mouth as an object of concentration anywhere else in the suttas?

thanks
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby rowyourboat » Sun Oct 11, 2009 6:50 am

well it makes sense to feel the breath (not mouth or nose) as this is mindfulness of breath..and keeping mindfulnes in front- where evre the breath is felt -'in front'
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby salaatti » Sun Oct 11, 2009 11:22 am

But doesn't it equally make sense just to "breathe in (and out) sensitive to the entire body"
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby PeterB » Mon Nov 02, 2009 9:21 am

salaatti wrote:But doesn't it equally make sense just to "breathe in (and out) sensitive to the entire body"

I think it does.
We are not after all ( to the best of my knowledge ) talking about certain areas of the body as having special significance as in various forms of yoga. The breath in the nostrils is an obvious phenomenon and has the advantage of being perceptable even when very subtle.Which is not always the case to the same degree with other indicators of respiration. However the rise and fall of the abdomen is usually perceptable if one's hand is placed on the abdomen.
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Re: Literal translation of Anapanasati Sutta pleas

Postby Laurens » Sun Nov 22, 2009 8:24 pm

Just to put another spin on things, I listened to a talk in which Ajahn Brahm stated the 'establishing mindfulness infront' means to bring one's attention to the present moment. He was quite adament about this, and stated that it is wrong to focus simply on the nose or the lips, or any area in particular.

I guess this could be, a probably will be debated for centuries to come.
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