The right kind of meditation

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

The right kind of meditation

Postby greggorious » Sun May 06, 2012 7:27 pm

Because I'm still conflicted in my views about Buddhism, fuelled by my depression, what kind of meditation would be most useful to practice? Samatha? Metta? I find Vipassana far too difficult to do right now.

(And yes before anyone says it again, I am under medical supervision)
"The original heart/mind shines like pure, clear water with the sweetest taste. But if the heart is pure, is our practice over? No, we must not cling even to this purity. We must go beyond all duality, all concepts, all bad, all good, all pure, all impure. We must go beyond self and nonself, beyond birth and death. When we see with the eye of wisdom, we know that the true Buddha is timeless, unborn, unrelated to any body, any history, any image. Buddha is the ground of all being, the realization of the truth of the unmoving mind.” Ajahn Chah
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Re: The right kind of meditation

Postby dhamma_newb » Sun May 06, 2012 8:01 pm

Hi greggorious,

I too deal with depression in my life. I think that self-compassion is essential. Here are some resources that may be of help to you. I wish you the best.

Why Self-Compassion Matters, and How to Develop It by Dr. Kelly Mcgonigal (video is shaky but the info is priceless)



Self-Compassion: Stop Beating Yourself Up and Leave Insecurity Behind

http://www.mindfulselfcompassion.org/meditations_downloads.php
The watched mind brings happiness.
Dhp 36

I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.
Walt Whitman
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Re: The right kind of meditation

Postby dhamma_newb » Sun May 06, 2012 8:15 pm

The watched mind brings happiness.
Dhp 36

I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.
Walt Whitman
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Re: The right kind of meditation

Postby Cafael Dust » Sun May 06, 2012 8:27 pm

Cultivate faith. Read good literature and watch powerful films, interest yourself in other peoples' stories. Understand that we rise and we learn; you cannot fail to see this in other lives. Empathy in the struggles of others plants seeds in one's mind, plants strong kamma for good.

Relax and follow your breath when you have space and stability to do so. Spend time close to nature; it's really worth it, you know, when you maybe have to spend an hour travelling to get out of town and you can't face it? It is worth it, even if you settle for a walk in the park.

I noticed in another post that you have problems with booze... everytime you want to drink, remind yourself that it is only a slight, temporary respite, and that you are developing faith in a complete respite. If you still drink, so be it, just keep reminding yourself, and notice the unfindability of true respite when you are drunk. That's how I stopped drinking, and I have been sober for seven years.

Hope I don't sound bossy. You'll be fine, maybe just not as soon as you would like to be, or maybe you will be fine tomorrow, this evening, thirty seconds from now :smile: . One can't know anything except that suffering is impermanent. That's the truth, and I stake my life, my soul, my billion vulnerable nerve endings on it. So practise trust. That should be your meditation. :namaste:
Not twice, not three times, not once,
the wheel is turning.
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Re: The right kind of meditation

Postby greggorious » Sun May 06, 2012 8:41 pm

Not too bossy at all, thanks for the advise. One of the good things about impermanence, especially when I'm having a strong urge to drink, is that I know the urge will go away, it's not permanent. The depression feels permanent though. My whole life I've been either in a state of extreme depression or anxiety.
I turned to spirituality out of desperation, and I appreciated the Buddhist idea of confronting suffering head on, and that's it's all part of the path.
And thanks for the links too, I'll take a look at them.

Namaste.
"The original heart/mind shines like pure, clear water with the sweetest taste. But if the heart is pure, is our practice over? No, we must not cling even to this purity. We must go beyond all duality, all concepts, all bad, all good, all pure, all impure. We must go beyond self and nonself, beyond birth and death. When we see with the eye of wisdom, we know that the true Buddha is timeless, unborn, unrelated to any body, any history, any image. Buddha is the ground of all being, the realization of the truth of the unmoving mind.” Ajahn Chah
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Re: The right kind of meditation

Postby Cafael Dust » Sun May 06, 2012 8:58 pm

Hi greggorious

My whole life I've been either in a state of extreme depression or anxiety.


Everyone is in this state really, except arahants. Some people are good at hiding ennui, distracting oneself from it, postponing dealing with it, staring it down, pretending to ignore it, running from it... you're dealing with it.

The depression feels permanent though.


This is a cognitive error we all have in depression, that's why I suggest cultivating faith that this feeling is not the truth. Whatever is happening now completely characterises now. Later things are different.

http://www.wscribe.com/parables/pass.html
Last edited by Cafael Dust on Sun May 06, 2012 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Not twice, not three times, not once,
the wheel is turning.
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Re: The right kind of meditation

Postby Cittasanto » Sun May 06, 2012 9:00 pm

Talk to your medical care supervisor and ask about MBSR, or any other mindfulness practices that maybe offered in your area, they can refer you to a suitably trained professional who can assist you far better than strangers online who do not know your personal/medical history.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: The right kind of meditation

Postby polarbuddha101 » Sun May 06, 2012 9:07 pm

greggorious wrote:Because I'm still conflicted in my views about Buddhism, fuelled by my depression, what kind of meditation would be most useful to practice? Samatha? Metta? I find Vipassana far too difficult to do right now.

(And yes before anyone says it again, I am under medical supervision)


I think metta and just focusing on the breath (anapanasati) would be good. Don't think about anything, just focus on the breath. I may be wrong but vipassana is a quality not a technique so just concentrate on the breath and maybe awareness of the body in the sense that you focus your whole mind on just feeling the entire body and do nothing else. Go to

http://www.dhammatalks.org/mp3_collecti ... tml#guided and do the first two meditations- the metta and the breath one with leaving instructions
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."
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