sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Discussion of Samatha bhavana and Jhana bhavana.

sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby no mike » Mon Feb 24, 2014 11:21 am

Is there a guideline or typical amount of sustained mindfulness throughout our days which is necessary before jhana development? I seem to be doing well in developing mindfulness, but I am still stuck at progress in my sitting practice. Maybe I am too hard on myself.
User avatar
no mike
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:16 pm
Location: south carolina

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby daverupa » Mon Feb 24, 2014 5:55 pm

What does being "stuck" look/sound/feel/think like, in this case?
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
User avatar
daverupa
 
Posts: 4102
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:58 pm

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby Goofaholix » Mon Feb 24, 2014 6:35 pm

Mindfulness is not generally considered to be leading to jhana, though it would certainly reinforce your samatha practise.

The aim is for mindfulness to be sustained every waking moment, so there's always a need to keep re-applying it.
"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
User avatar
Goofaholix
 
Posts: 1915
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 3:49 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby Mkoll » Mon Feb 24, 2014 7:20 pm

Remember to be mindful!
Peace,
James
User avatar
Mkoll
 
Posts: 2826
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 6:55 pm
Location: California, USA

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby no mike » Tue Feb 25, 2014 2:12 am

daverupa wrote:What does being "stuck" look/sound/feel/think like, in this case?


Look like: When I reach out and put my hand on the wall I'm facing.
Sound like:
Feel like: Alone.
Think like: How much longer can I sit like this.

I sense a lot of progress with mindfulness this year, moral conduct, investigation, metta and compassion, contemplation on the four foundations, and progress with each of the path elements, except for much progress in concentration. I probably just need to be patient. I think I have come a long way in one year with most of this.

Walking meditation seems easier.
User avatar
no mike
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:16 pm
Location: south carolina

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby culaavuso » Tue Feb 25, 2014 2:24 am

no mike wrote:Think like: How much longer can I sit like this.


This sounds like a restless mind. This kind of thought can arise from a desire for sensory stimulation or external activity of some sort. This kind of thought might stop arising if the desire itself can be seen. Similar to other cravings that arise in the more active areas of life, awareness of the craving allows seeing how the actions that arise in dependence on the craving are unskillful. This in turn can allow an understanding of why the craving is undesirable and the conditions that lead to the arising of this craving. This in turn can allow a relaxation of the craving so that it no longer causes unpleasantness. One of the great things about sitting for long periods of time is it forces the mind to experience this kind of unpleasantness as a result of restlessness and various cravings, which can bring about an understanding of the conditions that shape that restlessness and craving. Alternatively, believing in the truth or value of the unskillful thoughts rather than seeing them as the result of a process can amplify the discomfort and discontent that they bring about.

It might be helpful to read some of the techniques suggested in MN 20 for the relaxation of thoughts in order to bring about the relaxation of such thoughts so that they no longer create discontent during seated meditation.
culaavuso
 
Posts: 965
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 8:27 pm

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby James the Giant » Tue Feb 25, 2014 3:15 am

I agree that it sounds more like the hindrances attacking, rather than being "stuck".
Persist, and consult the many resources out there on the topic of the hindrances.
Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.
SN 9.11
User avatar
James the Giant
 
Posts: 780
Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2009 6:41 am

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby Babadhari » Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:34 am

It's for you to strive ardently.
Tathagatas simply point out the way.
Those who practice, absorbed in jhana:
from Mara's bonds they'll be freed
DhpXX
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28
Babadhari
 
Posts: 459
Joined: Tue Nov 26, 2013 1:23 pm
Location: lalita ghat

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby no mike » Wed Feb 26, 2014 6:37 pm

Well, the hinderances issue; that is why I ask about how far along one gets with "continued mindfulness" in relation to how much progress one may make toward jana.

A few months ago I was at a wall with sitting meditation, and I took the pressure off my mind by putting my attention on the rest of my practice; e.g., studying Satipatthana, and working on right thinking to overcome hinderances, etc. (working on right everything actually), kicking up precepts from 5 up toward 8 (almost, delaying but planning on food before 12) and working on cultivating mindfulness day-to-day. I have been doing more walking meditation (from hardly any to once a day). While sitting, I just sit and try to be mindful, and try to let go of "moving forward." Try.

I also reflected deeply after the responses I got here and realized I have loneliness/alienation issues to overcome. That's likely my issue. Sloth/torpor now coming back strong (ugh), but I have the solutions in all the Dhamma for that, too.

I guess the answer to my question, how much sustained daily mindfulness is connected to Jana development, is not a big deal. I will just keep plugging along and try ride it all out. Such is the path.

Concentration-wall-thing aside, I do feel joy with some accomplishments in cultivating mindfulness in day-to-day living. I see how progress helps with energy and effort.
User avatar
no mike
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:16 pm
Location: south carolina

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby daverupa » Wed Feb 26, 2014 7:01 pm

no mike wrote:my question, how much sustained daily mindfulness is connected to Jana development


Sustained satipatthana is integral to jhana. It isn't a matter of saying "X days and Y weeks and Z years" with precision, but instead a matter of putting the right conditions in place, time for which will vary between individuals. (On that note, the different ways that Sariputta & Mahamoggallana attained nibbana may be motivating for you. In short, Sariputta had a smooth and short time of it, while with Mahamoggallana it was also a short time, but he required much more help from the Teacher.)

Otherwise, consider MN 51. Look how much is practiced before jhana is attained:

...Renunciation...
Kammapatha...
Patimokkha...
Sense Restraint...

[Mindfulness...] “Whether going or coming, looking straight ahead or looking aside, bending or extending the limbs, donning his robes, carrying his bowl, eating, drinking, chewing or swallowing, answering calls of nature, walking, standing, sitting, sleeping, walking, speaking or silent, he is fully conscious of what he is doing.

[Inhibition of the Hindrances...] “And possessing this noble code of morality, this noble control of the senses, and this noble mindfulness, he seeks a lonely abode: in the forest, at the foot of a tree, on a mountain, in a cleft, in a rocky cave, in a cemetery, in the depths of a jungle, in an open space, or on a heap of straw.

“Having returned from the alms round and taken his meal, he sits down, with legs crossed, the body erect, and his mindfulness alert. Abandoning covetousness, abiding with thoughts free of greed, he purifies his mind of covetousness. Abandoning the taint of ill-will, abiding with thoughts free from ill-will, kind and compassionate to all living creatures, he purifies his mind of the taint of ill-will. Abandoning sloth and torpor, abiding free from sloth and torpor, with a lucid mind, mindful and aware of folly, he purifies his mind of sloth and torpor. Abandoning restlessness and worry, abiding free from restlessness, with mind appeased, he purifies it of restlessness and worry. Abandoning doubt, he abides free from indecision; free from uncertainty with regard to meritorious conditions, he purifies his mind of doubt.

[Jhānas!] “Abandoning these five hindrances which are defilements of the mind and which stultify wisdom; remote, indeed, from sense-desires and de-meritorious conditions, he lives abiding in the first jhāna...


Just remember that the hindrances are the other side of the awakening factors. So, dealing with the hindrances facilitates and is tied up with building up the awakening factors - which includes jhana.

Kammapatha & satipatthana make perfect cornerstones for pleasant, zesty practice.

:heart:
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
User avatar
daverupa
 
Posts: 4102
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:58 pm

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby Babadhari » Wed Feb 26, 2014 7:31 pm

thanks for that dave :thumbsup:
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28
Babadhari
 
Posts: 459
Joined: Tue Nov 26, 2013 1:23 pm
Location: lalita ghat

Re: sustained daily mindfulness for jhana

Postby no mike » Fri Feb 28, 2014 6:07 pm

daverupa wrote:[Jhānas!] “Abandoning these five hindrances which are defilements of the mind and which stultify wisdom; remote, indeed, from sense-desires and de-meritorious conditions, he lives abiding in the first jhāna...

Just remember that the hindrances are the other side of the awakening factors. So, dealing with the hindrances facilitates and is tied up with building up the awakening factors - which includes jhana.


Tremendous help, thank you, and thanks to all for the feedback here, it makes a big difference.

:heart: :)
User avatar
no mike
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:16 pm
Location: south carolina


Return to Samatha Meditation and Jhana

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest