Discussion of Samatha bhavana and Jhana bhavana.
I have a brief question about Samadhi practice.
Is it advised to meditate on one object for a period of time until the practice has developed sufficiently e.g. One teacher advised focussing on breath awareness for at least 6 months.
What are people's thoughts on swapping the meditation object depending on the situation, mood, energy levels etc.?
For instance, I prefer to do a body awareness meditation in the morning as I find it easier to concentrate earlier in the day, however in the late afternoon I meditate on the breath as I'm often restless by this time of day and find it helps bring some stillness. With this approach, perhaps the inidividual practices of body and breath awareness won't develop as quickly as I'm not focussing on just one, but I find it motivates me more to meditate if I'm not stuck on just one object all the time.
I realise everyone's different and you have to tailor your practice individually, but it would be interesting hearing other people's approaches to samadhi meditation practice.
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I take a certain satisfaction in doing only anapanasati, and not swapping among methods. I don't do a seated metta practice for example, as I find that the appamaññā end up co-arising with sampajañña as a direct result of anapanasati.
My saddha is such that I think anapanasati is rightly emphasized in the SuttaVinaya as the preeminent practice.
"There is, headman, dhammasamādhi. If you were to obtain cittasamādhi in that, you might abandon this state of perplexity. And what, headman, is dhammasamādhi?- SN 42.13 - Pāṭaliya
[kammapatha & brahmavihara, & a method of arousing gladness]"
"Others will misapprehend according to their individual views, hold on to them tenaciously and not easily discard them; we shall not misapprehend according to individual views nor hold on to them tenaciously, but shall discard them with ease — thus effacement can be done."- MN 8 - Sallekha Sutta
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There are days which anapanasati followed by vipassana sweeping seem to be non-starter because of the thinking mind. i then take to guided meditations by Shinzen Young who has produced 40 min sittings one of which is 'Working with the Thinking Mind', it helps alot in getting concentration that way.
But my Vipassana teacher tells me Shinzen Young is one of the persons blocked from Dhamma Giri!
So i don't know if listening to his guided meditation is kosher.
All beings like yourself are responsible for their own actions. Suffering or happiness is created through one's relationship to experience, not by experience itself. Although I wish only the best for you, I know that your happiness or unhappiness depends on your actions, not on my wishes for you.
May you not be caught in reactivity.
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I think as long as we are clear about what we are hoping to achieve by doing a particular meditation, we can decide for ourselves what works best. If the aim is to develop samadhi, then you know the longer you keep the mind on one particular objected (boredom, thereby hindering this process) saamdhi (unification, concentration of mind) will develop. Why not facilitate this process by using more inspiring objects during the course of the day. We just need to not make meditation a ritual or rite, but rather something done with understanding.
Vipassana is the other common objective- and that requires a different approach, using whatever objects are handy.
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