What are you thinking while meditating?

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

What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby Buddha » Mon May 28, 2012 12:35 pm

what is also good to think while meditating,i like to thing about mountains,or how im going to achieve something in this meaningless life.

Can someone gives me some tips what to think while meditating
Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby befriend » Mon May 28, 2012 1:35 pm

your not supposed to be thinking about anything while meditating unless your practicing some kind of samatha meditation.
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby hanzze_ » Mon May 28, 2012 1:42 pm

Thinking will be even very subtle always present, just do not follow it, and let it go again. Observe the process if you are aware that you are thinking.
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby marc108 » Mon May 28, 2012 5:07 pm

"It's easy for us to connect with what's wrong with us... and not so easy to feel into, or to allow us, to connect with what's right and what's good in us."
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby Buddha » Mon May 28, 2012 7:21 pm

thanks for the replays
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby Cittasanto » Mon May 28, 2012 8:24 pm

Sometimes I inwardly recite a reflection on a specific theme, such as metta would be the Karaniya Metta Sutta, or may I abide in well being...
or even the Buddhas advise to rahula on the elements when I have a bout of anger...
There are also quotes I use from teachers.

these are useful to help reflect upon the teaching and internalise these tools for when they are needed.

but I quite like the image you use, would be useful if feeling trapped in a city or an environment to help set the troubles aside for a session.
although be cautious as to how you use that.
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: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby Eccedustin » Wed Jun 27, 2012 5:14 am

In meditation, the first step is to clear the mind and to purify and let the fog settle like sediment settles in a clouded pond. It takes time and, if you "think" then the sediment clouds the pond again just like it would if you move around in the water. Keep still and clear all thoughts.

Once the fog is cleared and the "pond" is clear, I.E. the mind is clear, then you move onto "thinking" about a single one thing that you want to understand and/or develop. For instance in Metta meditation you develop loving-kindness and there are many steps of what to think about and how to go about doing that in general practice.
The universe is awake, conscious and aware of itself! The universe is awake, conscious and aware of itself because we are awake, conscious and aware of ourselves. We are the not just in the universe, we are the universe.
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby Son » Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:06 am

Buddha wrote:what is also good to think while meditating,i like to thing about mountains,or how im going to achieve something in this meaningless life.

Can someone gives me some tips what to think while meditating


"breath"

or, "lovingness."

Or simply, "focus."
A seed sleeps in soil.
It's cold and alone, hopeless.
Until it blooms above.
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby dharmagoat » Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:04 am

What am I thinking while meditating?

All sorts of things, but the thoughts arise spontaneously, and naturally dissipate.
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby manas » Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:45 am

Hi Buddha,

lately I have been experimenting with 'internal self-guided meditation'. Instead of trying to let go of all thinking straight away, i use it, especially early on in the sitting. Alot of the thinking consists of relevant lines from the suttas (for example, the anapanasati section of the satipatthana sutta), as well as quotes from respected teachers & guides. But if the mind begins to calm down, I then can let go of thinking more and more, moving towards 'silent witnessing'. But that is a longer-term project for me.

manas :anjali:
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby greggorious » Mon Jul 16, 2012 1:26 pm

Think about being in the present moment in this "Meaningless life"
"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: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby reflection » Mon Jul 16, 2012 2:41 pm

Preferably, not at all. Thinking sucks.

:anjali:
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby Wesley1982 » Wed Jul 18, 2012 4:02 am

Usually nothing at all
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby daverupa » Wed Jul 18, 2012 11:52 am

So what is the benefit? Because, by way of the simile of the infant, it seems that lack of thinking as meditative attainment means infants are masterful meditators, and that putting them in a box would maintain their mastery. But this is absurd; so, of what benefit is this lack of thought, mentioned by so many?

Even the first jhana has thought...
    "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]
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby kirk5a » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:48 pm

daverupa wrote:So what is the benefit? Because, by way of the simile of the infant, it seems that lack of thinking as meditative attainment means infants are masterful meditators, and that putting them in a box would maintain their mastery. But this is absurd; so, of what benefit is this lack of thought, mentioned by so many?

Even the first jhana has thought...

The suttas do talk about the benefits of cutting off distractive thinking and stilling thought.

viewtopic.php?f=17&t=11901#p180640

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... ml#dhp-349
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby bodom » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:12 pm

"Buddho"

Buddho
viewtopic.php?t=2552

: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: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby santa100 » Wed Jul 18, 2012 3:01 pm

There're different strategies for different stages of meditation. At the beginning, it's important to maintain applied thought(vitakka) and sustained thought(vicara) on the meditation object(ie. the in-out breath, buddho, mantra, etc.) because without them, the five hindrances of lust, aversion, sloth, restlessness, and doubt would overwhelm the meditator. With subsequent and more refine stages of concentration, one can let go of vitakka and vicara..
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby Viscid » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:12 pm

daverupa wrote:But this is absurd; so, of what benefit is this lack of thought, mentioned by so many?

Even the first jhana has thought...


Discursive thinking in meditation has a rather undeserved poor reputation. Such thought is an invariable element of meditation, regardless of method, and I don't think it's something which should be shunned. What I usually think about when trying to concentrate on my object are things immediately relevant to my life: things I've said, things that are going to happen, regrets, hopes, curiosities.. these can then be analyzed from a much more neutral emotional standpoint while meditating. The results of this rumination are useful, creative conclusions, solutions or ideas which I may not have had if I did not engage in a meditative practice.
Last edited by Viscid on Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby m0rl0ck » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:18 pm

As little as i can get by with, and lets not forget that aversion to thinking is just more thinking.
"When you meditate, don't send your mind outside. Don't fasten onto any knowledge at all. Whatever knowledge you've gained from books or teachers, don't bring it in to complicate things. Cut away all preoccupations, and then as you meditate let all your knowledge come from what's going on in the mind. When the mind is quiet, you'll know it for yourself. But you have to keep meditating a lot. When the time comes for things to develop, they'll develop on their own. Whatever you know, have it come from your own mind.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai ... eleft.html
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Re: What are you thinking while meditating?

Postby bodom » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:33 pm

This essay may be helpful in understanding the use of thinking in meditation:

Wise Reflection

The purpose of this essay is to explain the value of wise reflection, yoniso manasikara, and to encourage readers to use their own thought processes for the growth of wisdom in their formal meditation practice. The majority of experienced Buddhist meditators whom I have met during thirty years of meditation and eighteen years of teaching were unfamiliar with formal reflective meditation. By way of this essay I hope to correct this lack of understanding.


http://www.bps.lk/olib/wh/wh463-p.html

: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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