The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.

Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Ben » Mon Mar 28, 2011 10:56 pm

Greetings Sully,

d.sullivan wrote:I thought about keeping a meditation journal of sorts, since I can imagine that being really helpful. I'm hoping that for now this thread will serve that purpose.

Yes, providing members with a venue to journalize their meditation challenges was one of the reasons we set up this thread.
If there is anything else we can do to support your practice, please let me, or one of my colleagues, know.
kind regards

Ben
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby d.sullivan » Wed Mar 30, 2011 9:51 am

Ben wrote:Greetings Sully,

d.sullivan wrote:I thought about keeping a meditation journal of sorts, since I can imagine that being really helpful. I'm hoping that for now this thread will serve that purpose.

If there is anything else we can do to support your practice, please let me, or one of my colleagues, know.
kind regards

Ben


Thank you kindly! I'll be sure to ask if I need anything :smile:

Day two complete.
Every blade in the field,
Every leaf in the forest,
Lays down its life in its season,
As beautifully as it was taken up.

Thoreau.
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby d.sullivan » Wed Apr 06, 2011 9:36 am

d.sullivan wrote: I hereby undertake the challenge of meditating for a half hour every day for the next week.


Challenge met. Given that my one-step-at-a-time method has so far been successful, I think I will continue it and renew my last challenge for this week.

Sully.
Every blade in the field,
Every leaf in the forest,
Lays down its life in its season,
As beautifully as it was taken up.

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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Jhana4 » Wed Apr 06, 2011 12:52 pm

+ 1
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby SeekingTruth » Mon May 23, 2011 8:48 am

I sat for about 15 minutes last night on the bedroom floor practicing watching the breath. My mind seemed more jumpy than usual and my body felt hot and agitated. It seemed like I did not have the necessary mindfullness to stay with the waves of heated agitation and so I ended up getting up and stopping the meditation :( Perhaps I need to wind myself down somewhat before meditation practice, rather than going directly from day2day life straight into eyes closed, trying to concentrate mode?
"Just go into the center of the room, and put one chair in the center. Take the one seat in the center of the room, open the doors and windows, and see who comes to visit. You will witness all kinds of scenes and actors, all kinds of temptations and stories, everything imaginable. Your only job is to stay in your seat. You will see it arise and pass, and out of this, wisdom and understanding will come." —AJAHN CHAH
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby bodom » Mon May 23, 2011 11:25 am

SeekingTruth wrote:I sat for about 15 minutes last night on the bedroom floor practicing watching the breath. My mind seemed more jumpy than usual and my body felt hot and agitated. It seemed like I did not have the necessary mindfullness to stay with the waves of heated agitation and so I ended up getting up and stopping the meditation :( Perhaps I need to wind myself down somewhat before meditation practice, rather than going directly from day2day life straight into eyes closed, trying to concentrate mode?


It happens to the best of us, nothing to worry about. If you find you are so restless that you cannot sit, go do walking meditation. You can also try doing walking meditation even before sitting as this can expend some restless energy before going on to the sitting posture. Remember, meditation is not just sitting with your eyes closed but cultivating continuous mindfulness in all postures.

:anjali:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby SeekingTruth » Tue May 24, 2011 8:05 am

bodom wrote:Remember, meditation is not just sitting with your eyes closed but cultivating continuous mindfulness in all postures.


Thank you for the reminder :) I do get a little caught up in thinking that meditation is all about sitting. It's not :)
"Just go into the center of the room, and put one chair in the center. Take the one seat in the center of the room, open the doors and windows, and see who comes to visit. You will witness all kinds of scenes and actors, all kinds of temptations and stories, everything imaginable. Your only job is to stay in your seat. You will see it arise and pass, and out of this, wisdom and understanding will come." —AJAHN CHAH
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby David2 » Tue May 24, 2011 8:25 am

SeekingTruth wrote:
bodom wrote:Remember, meditation is not just sitting with your eyes closed but cultivating continuous mindfulness in all postures.


Thank you for the reminder :) I do get a little caught up in thinking that meditation is all about sitting. It's not :)


That's true of course. But we should not make the mistake and quit our sitting practise because of that. Sitting is the more profound practise. Imo walking is basically for reducing the more superficial agitation of the mind and body which is also quite important at some times, of course. But generally, mindfulness in all postures develops automatically if we do our sitting practise mindfully.
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby SeekingTruth » Wed May 25, 2011 8:27 am

Sat again last night, this time in the living room once my wife had retired for the evening. Lit some candles in front of my wooden buddha statue, took refuge in the Buddha, Dharma & Sangha. Observed the 5 precepts and then listened to a guided meditation by Jon Kabat-Zinn on watching the breath, followed by another guided meditation involving doing a body scan and then finally I blew the candles out, sat in the dark in utter silence, paying attention to the moment :anjali:
"Just go into the center of the room, and put one chair in the center. Take the one seat in the center of the room, open the doors and windows, and see who comes to visit. You will witness all kinds of scenes and actors, all kinds of temptations and stories, everything imaginable. Your only job is to stay in your seat. You will see it arise and pass, and out of this, wisdom and understanding will come." —AJAHN CHAH
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby SeekingTruth » Thu May 26, 2011 9:45 am

OK, living room floor again last night. Listened to the sound of the meditation bell [Thich Nhat Hanh] for a while as a way of gathering my concentration. Sat watching the breath and then after about ten minutes or so I began to feel agitated once more in my body, a strong almost overwhelming sense of restlessness which I could actually feel. I tried to allow the feeling to just be there and observe it etc, but it was so intense I stopped my meditation and started playing chess online. Inevitably, I could concentrate at that with no effort whatsoever :shrug: Does anyone know why that is or how I might be able to better sit with the restlessness, rather than running from it? :namaste:
Last edited by SeekingTruth on Thu May 26, 2011 12:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Just go into the center of the room, and put one chair in the center. Take the one seat in the center of the room, open the doors and windows, and see who comes to visit. You will witness all kinds of scenes and actors, all kinds of temptations and stories, everything imaginable. Your only job is to stay in your seat. You will see it arise and pass, and out of this, wisdom and understanding will come." —AJAHN CHAH
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Ben » Thu May 26, 2011 9:56 am

You won't conquer your restlessness by giving in to it. You need to learn how to work with the hindrances and use them as an opportunity to develop concentration. Think of them as concentration hurdles. And be kind to yourself and yet exert more energy. Firstly, practce but have no expectations. Practice for the sake of practice. Secondly, No one in recent times became enlightened from meditating within ten minutes. Extend the length of time you can maintain unbroken awareness of the meditation object before lengthening your meditation sessions.
All the best

Ben
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Jhana4 » Wed Jul 20, 2011 11:04 am

According to the written log I keep, the meditation I just finished marks 6 years of practice without a single day of meditation missed.
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Reductor » Wed Jul 20, 2011 4:30 pm

Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Meditation Journal

Postby dhammadiscipline » Sun Aug 21, 2011 3:52 am

Hey everyone, I'm going to record my practice here and -hopefully- keep myself motivated. Maybe it can help others, too.

:group: :)
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Ben » Sun Aug 21, 2011 4:26 am

All the best with your efforts Dhammawill!
I look forward to reading about them.
kind regards

Ben
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

- Hereclitus


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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby dhammadiscipline » Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:55 pm

Sat for half an hour this morning. Had a lot of trouble following the breath, held on to it a couple times but 99% of the time was being pushed around my mind. Going to sit again tomorrow morning.
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Moth » Mon Aug 22, 2011 5:33 pm

My friend and I decided that we'd do a retreat right here in our own homes. Since we have five day left of summer vacation, the schedule ended up like this:

Weds-Sunday(10am-6pm/August 24-28)
*Meditation consists of 30 minutes sitting followed by 30 minutes of walking
10:00-11:00 - Meditation
11:00-12:00 - Meditation
12:00-1:00 - Lunch
1:00-2:00 - Meditation
2:00-3:00 - Meditation
3:00-4:00 - Tea
4:00-5:00 - Meditation
5:00-6:00 - Meditation

Saturday(12am-6am)
*Saturday will include the regular schedule, but will add an additional 6 hours at night, and then continue with the regular schedule Sunday morning.
12:00-1:00 - Meditation
1:00-2:00 - Meditation
2:00-3:00 - Meditation
3:00-4:00 - Meditation
4:00-5:00 - Meditation
5:00-6:00 - Meditation

8 precepts will be kept on all five days.

If anyone would like to join us who lives in the LA/SF Valley area please do! We will do two session in the woods, one in a house, and one at a local temple. We encourage everyone to make their own retreats as well, no reason why we have to go to a far away place to strive in meditation.

Metta
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby FaceaceRAWR » Tue Aug 23, 2011 12:40 am

Oooo! I really enjoy the idea behind this thread! I do my best to meditate, but I'm easily distracted and mildly [hehe] forgetful.[which is why I'm glad to have discovered concentration meditation to aid in that]. Here's my current schedule. Well, I really shouldn't say schedule because I don't chose when I want to meditate based on the hour, but on my mind.
Anywho, I hope for your support! :hug:

This is my goal for at LEAST the rest of August [my birthday month].
Ace's Meditation Goal:
15 minutes - 30 minutes of Vipassana as I awake.
10 minutes - 30 minutes of Concentration Meditation following that.
---
30 minutes - one hour of Vipassana during the day followed immediately by...
10 minutes - 20 minutes of Concentration Mediation.
---
15 minutes - 30 minutes of Vipassana before I lay down on my bed at night.
Concentration Meditation in the Corpse Pose as I fall asleep.
---BONUS POINTS FOR ME! :quote:
At least 10 minutes of Concentration Meditation by itself during the day.
At least 30 minutes of Vipassana by itself during the day.

Lately I've been forgetting my meditation during the day because I get caught up in activities [ie: wasting time on the internet, playing games on the Xbox 360, ect.].
Wish me luck!

Metta! :heart: :hug:

Sincerely,
Ace :strawman:
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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Ben » Tue Aug 23, 2011 12:57 am

Hi Dhammawill,
dhammawill wrote:Sat for half an hour this morning. Had a lot of trouble following the breath, held on to it a couple times but 99% of the time was being pushed around my mind. Going to sit again tomorrow morning.

Its not an unusual experience. Certainly extend effort but also try and be relaxed about it and not have any expectations. When the mind wanders, gently return it to the object and try and keep it there for as long as possible.
All the very best,

Ben
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

- Hereclitus


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Re: The Dhamma Wheel Meditation Challenge

Postby Ben » Tue Aug 23, 2011 1:01 am

Hi Moth,

Moth wrote:My friend and I decided that we'd do a retreat right here in our own homes. Since we have five day left of summer vacation, the schedule ended up like this:

Weds-Sunday(10am-6pm/August 24-28)
*Meditation consists of 30 minutes sitting followed by 30 minutes of walking
10:00-11:00 - Meditation
11:00-12:00 - Meditation
...

...If anyone would like to join us who lives in the LA/SF Valley area please do! We will do two session in the woods, one in a house, and one at a local temple. We encourage everyone to make their own retreats as well, no reason why we have to go to a far away place to strive in meditation.

Metta


I'm a little curious why you're not utilising the best time of day 4AM to 10AM, and the overnighter, which if you're not used to it, could be a recipe for disappointment.
Anyway, I want to wish you the very best for your upcoming self-retreat. I wish you every success!
kind regards
Ben
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

- Hereclitus


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