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Breath this... Breath that... - Page 3 - Dhamma Wheel

Breath this... Breath that...

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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mettafuture
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby mettafuture » Fri Sep 03, 2010 2:58 pm


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octathlon
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby octathlon » Fri Sep 03, 2010 6:15 pm

I think I understand what you are saying, mettafuture. This is why I sit on a chair to meditate, though every so often I still try sitting on the floor/a cushion in one of the cross-legged positions. It comes down to I can either spend a lot of time generating and observing back pain without ever achieving deep concentration, or I can sit on a chair and do some real meditation. :meditate:

Kenshou
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Kenshou » Fri Sep 03, 2010 7:04 pm

I don't know if it's too tied up in the breath for you, but I've found that simple mindfulness of the body is a very useful exercise. Simply being aware of the sense of space which you occupy and keeping your mindfulness there as you would with the breath. I tend to practice this in tandem with anapanasati, since they go well together, but mindfulness of the body has the advantage of being easily done in basically any circumstance, not confined to sitting meditation. In any case it does train your mindfulness and focus, which is what really matters.

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Goofaholix
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Goofaholix » Fri Sep 03, 2010 7:33 pm


Nyana
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Nyana » Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:24 pm

Hi Mettafuture,

I practice earth kasiṇa and/or air kasiṇa meditation every day and find it very useful for developing deep calm (samatha). The aim of the practice is the attunement of apperception to the totality of whichever kasiṇa one is working with, but for developing calm I've found that it's best to start with the commentarial method of using a circular disk. I use potting soil leveled flat in a large shallow bowl for an earth kasiṇa disk, and also have a few color kasiṇas cut out of colored cloth. Anyway, a few sources on kasiṇa practice to get started:

.

.

.

All the best,

Geoff

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bodom
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby bodom » Mon Sep 06, 2010 2:25 am

How about meditating on the mantra Buddho? No need to involve the breath at all.

Buddho by Phra Ajaan Thate Desaransi
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai ... uddho.html

:anjali:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html
http://www.ajahnchah.org/

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Dan74
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Dan74 » Mon Sep 06, 2010 2:47 am

I am not sure if it bears mentioning, but it's really good practice to work on the Brahmaviharas - sila, rather than putting samadhi first.

We, westerners, sometimes rush into meditation without some preparatory work. Basically if my life is a mess, sitting on the cushion is only going to reflect that, I found.

And if my life isn't a mess and I still find meditation difficult, there is always more to work on with Brahmaviharas, and return to the cushion with fewer expectations.

Of course apart from the breath, in Theravada there is also Buddho (viewtopic.php?f=17&t=2552&hilit=buddho), chanting suttas (e.g. Metta Sutta), worship, etc etc
_/|\_

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samadhi_steve
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby samadhi_steve » Tue Sep 07, 2010 9:49 pm

Mentally reciting Buddho has got many to develop mindfulness & concentration
Ajahn Sao, Mun, Boowa, and Thate we particularly fond of this method of gathering the mind.

I have found myself to have a rather analytical mind, wanting to know this or that concept. But if you collect the mind with mindfulness such as in this case mentally reciting "buddho" your mind will gradually calm down and become more at ease.

Right Mindfulness develops into Right Concentration. Each part of the path develops/matures on its own, much as a fruit ripens.

Remember Right Effort must be present in reciting the mantra. Do not establish Buddho forcefully or out of aversion which will only cause tension. Think of it as a relief, a refuge.

Developing this doubt or delusion stands chance against the awareness that follows the calm mind.
Buddho is something cool and calm. It's the path for giving rise to peace and contentment — the only path that will release us from the suffering and stress in this world.

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bodom
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby bodom » Tue Sep 07, 2010 10:26 pm

Hi Steve

I use the mantra Buddho as my main meditation subject. I mentally recite "Buddho" "Buddho" "Buddho" all day and night, during each and every activity, be it eating, drinking, working, sitting, standing, walking etc. It has greatly enhanced my mindfulness and concentration and allows me to stay focused on each and every activity I undertake. In turn, the concentration I have developed OFF the cushion during daily life makes it so much easier to focus while ON the cushion during formal meditation.

See this thread if you would like to discuss more on Buddho:

viewtopic.php?t=2552

:anjali:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html
http://www.ajahnchah.org/

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samadhi_steve
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby samadhi_steve » Tue Sep 07, 2010 11:04 pm

Bodom,

It's a really good technique for those who have an anxious mind. Reciting a mantra such as Buddho really anchors you into awareness. I don't even dare to call it a technique because it is pure mindfulness and concentration. However it has brought me a great deal of peace and insight off and on the cushion.

:namaste:
Buddho is something cool and calm. It's the path for giving rise to peace and contentment — the only path that will release us from the suffering and stress in this world.

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mettafuture
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby mettafuture » Sun Sep 19, 2010 6:01 am


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bodom
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Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby bodom » Sun Sep 19, 2010 5:32 pm

To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html
http://www.ajahnchah.org/

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Ytrog
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Ytrog » Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:42 am

So, what's really the best way to develop concentration? I know a bit of the techniques that involve watching things arise and fall with the breath as a fall-back option and I try to practice them (with varying success), but I believe that my concentration should be improved before I can go further. How to do this? :anjali:

I do know of a practice of breath meditation that I find useful:
First, count the breath until you've had five in and out breaths, then start again and count to six, then to seven until you reach ten. After ten you start again with 1..5, 1..6, 1..7, 1..8, 1..9 and 1..10. When you lose count somewhere you'll have to start all over with one to five. This has worked for me not only for breath, but also for cycles on a bicycle :)

It also has some motivation factor in it in the sense that you can challenge yourself with seeing how many cycles all the way to 10 you can maintain.

Kenshou
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Location: Minneapolis, MN

Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Kenshou » Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:45 am


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Ytrog
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Ytrog » Tue Sep 21, 2010 7:14 am


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manas
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby manas » Tue Sep 21, 2010 8:48 am

My current understanding of anapanasati (or is it just how I practice it?) is influenced alot by Ajahn Brahm's teaching; I progressively let go of burdens, beginning with the coarse and progressing to the fine. The first burden to let go of is worry and agitation ("there are so many things to get done today...") -"Yes, there are, but there always will be...and right now is the time for training the mind, and this too 'needs to be done'...you will attend to those other things later...for now let them go utterly". I use inner talk in a skilful way (I hope!) to ease myself into a more calm state, with gentleness.

...edit...
Last edited by manas on Wed Sep 22, 2010 4:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
Then the Blessed One, picking up a tiny bit of dust with the tip of his fingernail, said to the monk, "There isn't even this much form...feeling...
perception...fabrications...consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity."

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Ytrog
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Ytrog » Tue Sep 21, 2010 10:44 am

Interesting entry. Do you keep a meditation diary? I've read about keeping those, though never kept one myself.

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manas
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby manas » Wed Sep 22, 2010 4:53 am

Hi ytrog,
I usually write down only ones that stand out, that I can learn from, or inspire myself with in the future, should I ever start losing hope.
At present I am trying not to think too much about things, so not much writing going on now.
Thanks for the feedback, though. :)
Then the Blessed One, picking up a tiny bit of dust with the tip of his fingernail, said to the monk, "There isn't even this much form...feeling...
perception...fabrications...consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity."

Kenshou
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Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 12:03 am
Location: Minneapolis, MN

Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Kenshou » Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:02 am


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Ytrog
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Re: Breath this... Breath that...

Postby Ytrog » Wed Sep 22, 2010 10:32 am



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