Sweet_Nothing wrote:It is a little taxing to keep this up for long and as soon as I forget about keeping back straight, it goes back into a slight slouch.
I had an desk job which involved a lot of sitting not so ergonomically and I think that contributed to weaker muscles/posture.
This seems to be a matter of mindfulness and heedfulness. Through practicing maintaining mindfulness more constantly, it can be noticed as soon as the muscles begin to slouch. When this is noticed, it can be corrected out of an awareness that slouching can be an indicator of heedlessness. Slouching can also be an indicator of sloth and torpor, which a heedful attitude may lead to quickly abandoning once recognized.Dhp 2
Dhp 2: Appamadavagga wrote:21. Heedfulness is the path to the Deathless. Heedlessness is the path to death. The heedful die not. The heedless are as if dead already.
22. Clearly understanding this excellence of heedfulness, the wise exult therein and enjoy the resort of the Noble Ones.
25. By effort and heedfulness, discipline and self-mastery, let the wise one make for himself an island which no flood can overwhelm.
26. The foolish and ignorant indulge in heedlessness, but the wise one keeps his heedfulness as his best treasure.
27. Do not give way to heedlessness. Do not indulge in sensual pleasures. Only the heedful and meditative attain great happiness.
Sweet_Nothing wrote:Now combine this with sexually suggestive imagery which is very common
This seems to be a matter of mindfulness and heedfulness. Through practicing maintaining mindfulness more constantly, it can be noticed as soon as the mind begins to give attention and create passion towards these images. Rather than waiting until later to contemplate the parts of the body or the corpse contemplations, you can apply them as soon as improper attention to beauty begins to arise. Recognize the unattractive aspects of what you see as soon as you recognize this mental chain of events begin. Put out the fire when it's the size of a match, don't wait for it to grow to the size of a forest. There are many unattractive aspects to every body, but it is through ignoring those aspects that the perception of only beauty arises.SN 46.51
SN 46.51: Ahara Sutta wrote:And what is the food for the arising of unarisen sensual desire, or for the growth & increase of sensual desire once it has arisen? There is the theme of beauty. To foster inappropriate attention to it: This is the food for the arising of unarisen sensual desire, or for the growth & increase of sensual desire once it has arisen.
Now, what is lack of food for the arising of unarisen sensual desire, or for the growth & increase of sensual desire once it has arisen? There is the theme of unattractiveness. To foster appropriate attention to it: This is lack of food for the arising of unarisen sensual desire, or for the growth & increase of sensual desire once it has arisen.
AN 7.46: Sañña Sutta wrote:If, when a monk's awareness often remains steeped in the perception of the unattractive, his mind inclines to the completion of the sexual act, or if non-loathing takes a stance, then he should realize, 'I have not developed the perception of the unattractive; there is no step-by-step distinction in me; I have not arrived at the fruit of [mental] development.' In that way he is alert there. But if, when a monk's awareness often remains steeped in the perception of the unattractive, his mind shrinks away from the completion of the sexual act, bends away, pulls back, and is not drawn in, and either equanimity or loathing take a stance, then he should realize, 'I have developed the perception of the unattractive; there is a step-by-step distinction in me; I have arrived at the fruit of [mental] development.' In that way he is alert there.
AN 4.49: Vipallasa Sutta wrote: 'Attractive' with regard to the unattractive is a perversion of perception, a perversion of mind, a perversion of view.
Perceiving constancy in the inconstant,
pleasure in the stressful,
self in what's not-self,
attractiveness in the unattractive,
beings, destroyed by wrong-view,
go mad, out of their minds.
Thank you for taking out the time for creating this excellent post with all the good references. I agree with what you've said about slouching.
Certainly, I tend to get a little overpowered as the defilments become stronger as I do not have enough determination to pursue things so closely.
I am surrendering to being loathsome and my insights are not strong enough to pull me out of wrong views.
One of the wrong views I have held for long is that practice is a part time thing rather than a full time way of life. This too stems from delusion.
Certainly, there are lapses in mindfulness and heedfulness. I will strengthen my efforts to catch the trail of mind at the beginning.
Pondera wrote:2 or 3 weeks? I can barely get beyond 2 or 3 days!
Do you practice realeasing tension in your lower back? There's a lot of "prana" in that region.
I used to masturbate everyday since I was in secondary school. I was introduced to pornography quite accidentally and never knew how harmful it was until I sat for my first Vipassana retreat.
That experience really tuned my inner moral compass and reduced my cravings/enjoyment of food, entertainment, sex and so on significantly.
So gradually the gaps increased and I got to where I am right now. I try to integrate the breath into body scanning and focus on tension areas which helps in dissolving the blocks.
Sweet_Nothing wrote:I had an desk job which involved a lot of sitting not so ergonomically and I think that contributed to weaker muscles/posture.
This could be a factor. For me, I naturally want to slouch my upper torso, jut my chin out, drop the back of my head back, and droop my shoulders forward due to this being a posture I've sat in most of my life and it being the "easy" posture to default to when sitting because it requires less effort than a more straightened posture. I have to always keep posture in mind if I want to sit straight. I think this just goes hand-in-hand with mindfulness of the body and right effort. Basically, some degree of mindfulness and effort must be present for the body to sit straight.
Hi Mkoll, thanks for your suggestions.
Same with me. I know the instructions are to keep straightening the back again and again after this is realized but I wanted to know a little more about why this happens.
It is possible to make progress in meditation with incorrect posture. A correct posture makes meditation more fluid and benefits more in the long run.
I think eventually it becomes a natural habit of the mind to sit straight as mindfulness settles deeper in the mind.
Yeah, a regular and diligent practice is the cure to just about everything. Of course this is easier said than done.
Exactly, my friend !
The alternative is not to feel so guilty about wanking it once in awhile. You're definitely not breaking the precept: sexual misconduct is defined as intercourse with forbidden women in a sutta. If you can maintain excellent practice for weeks straight at a time and have a few days of lethargy in between, I'd say you're doing really well. Eventually you may come to the point where you don't get that urge or it arises and passes so quickly as to be unnoticeable.
The guilt tends to arise naturally, like the mind is somehow wired in that way. I read somewhere the Chinese have a word for those 5 mins of clarity a man experiences right after orgasm.
I think this habit is unwholesome because it breaks equanimity and promotes sensual gratification, which creates more delusion. Certainly, this forum has motivated me enough to pursue the practice with renewed vigor.
And the hypothetical and rhetorical question must be asked...How much are your symptoms (draining, laziness, etc.) due to the physical act of masturbation vs. how much are they due to the psychological acts surrounding it?
You're right. Probably 50/50. It seems that as mindfulness becomes more settled into every moment of our lives, we no longer indulge in even mildly unwholesome acts because the mindfulness prevents us from indulging
in the trail of thoughts that leads to urges, and the urges that result in unwholesome sensual desires being fulfilled, creating more craving/delusion.
It's not something we restrain by choice, rather it's something that stops coming up.