I am doing Anapanasati Meditation because i would like to deepen my concentration before i start practicing Vippasana next year.
I would like to know whether I should follow:
1.Follow the breath into my body and out of my body.
2.Stick to one fixed point,people always say the nostrils but i can't do that.It is usually in the abdomen/chest area or at the back of my throat.
Yana wrote:2.Stick to one fixed point,people always say the nostrils but i can't do that.It is usually in the abdomen/chest area or at the back of my throat.
Ajahn Brahm wrote:The fifth stage is called full sustained attention on the beautiful breath. Often this stage flows naturally and seamlessly from the previous stage. As briefly
discussed in the previous chapter, when one’s full attention rests easily and
continuously on the experience of breathing with nothing interrupting
the even flow of awareness, the breath calms down. It changes from a
coarse, ordinary breath to a very smooth and peaceful “beautiful breath.”
The mind recognizes this beautiful breath and delights in it. It experi-
ences a deepening of contentment. It is happy just to be watching this
beautiful breath, and it does not need to be forced.
This sixth stage is achieved when one lets go of the body, thought, and
the five senses (including the awareness of the breath) so completely that
only a beautiful mental sign, a nimitta, remains.
Pa Auk Sayadaw wrote:To begin meditating, sit in a comfortable position and
try to be aware of the breath as it enters and leaves the
body through the nostrils. You should be able to feel
it either just below the nose or somewhere around the
nostrils. Do not follow the breath into the body or out
of the body, because then you will not be able to perfect
your concentration. Just be aware of the breath at the
most obvious place it brushes against or touches, either
the top of the upper lip or around the nostrils. Then you
will be able to develop and perfect your concentration.
The concept of the breath is the object of mindfulness-of-breathing.
It is this object you must concentrate on to develop concentration.
Just before the nimitta appears, a lot of meditators
encounter difficulties. Mostly they find that the breath
becomes very subtle, and not clear; they may think the
breath has stopped. If this happens, you should keep
your awareness where you last noticed the breath, and
wait for it there.
Yana wrote:hi ,
I have tried both techniques to follow the breath or to fix to a certain point.This is what i have found:
1.When i follow the in and out of the breath. I get a calm sensation,like warm sensation like i am absorbing something BUT..when i get up my mind is cloudy.and my body temperature rises to the point where i am really burning and regardless of how cold it is have to take a cold shower.
2.When i focus on a fixed point.i am also calm BUT i don't get a warm sensation like the one above.My temperature doesn't rise.I feel cool actually. AND my mind brightens up.It is a lot clearer and focused.Like refreshed.
So my conclusion is:
1. Following the in and out of breath calms the mind,maybe if your stuck somewhere in the cold and don't have anything to keep you warm it might help ,it give you a sense of bliss or pleasant sensation.It calms you down so i use it when i am anxious or about to get mad.
2.Focusing on a fixed point sharpens your concentration.It's not that it doesn't give me a blissful sensation i don't really get any sensation,i'm kind of life empty and just focused.Which even though isn't blissful it is very serene and peaceful.
So logically i think i should start with #1 then after a few minutes before i burn up change it to #2.
What do you think?
Buddhadasa Bhikkhu wrote: A MENTAL IMAGE APPEARS
Now, the breath refines and calms further when we create a mental image (nimitta) at the guarding point. This mental image is only imaginary, it is not real. It is created by the citta, it is mind-made. You can close the eyes and "see" it, you can open the eyes and you still "see" it. It is like a hallucination that the mind creates by itself to calm the breath. To do so, the mind must be subtle. The breath, everything, must be refined in order to raise a mental image. The breath must become finer and calmer until the image is created.
When the mind is one-pointed, there are no other feelings, thoughts, or objects of that mind. There remain only the things called jhananga (factors of jhana*).
[* Jhana means "to gaze, to focus" but the exact significance varies with the context. Here it signifies a high level of samadhi often translated "absorption."]
Yana wrote:1.When i follow the in and out of the breath. I get a calm sensation,like warm sensation like i am absorbing something BUT..when i get up my mind is cloudy.and my body temperature rises to the point where i am really burning and regardless of how cold it is have to take a cold shower.
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