Vipassana is mindfulness?

Discussion of Satipatthana bhavanā and Vipassana bhavana.

Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:36 am

I've been noticing that my vipassana practice and mindfulness practice seem to be basically the same activity, which I'd describe as observing whatever arises.
I'd be interested in your thoughts on this.

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby zazang » Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:51 am

Vipassana is to see things as they are..nothing less , nothing more...and it is Mindfullness that reminds us to do that.
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Ben » Sun Sep 19, 2010 10:53 am

Hi Spiny

Sati is a factor of both samatha and vipassana.
kind regards

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby 5heaps » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:01 am

which I'd describe as observing whatever arises.

i dont know how that can be called vipassana, since everything that normally arises is wrong.
then the big debate is what exactly does it mean to not be wrong
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:44 am

5heaps wrote:
which I'd describe as observing whatever arises.

i dont know how that can be called vipassana, since everything that normally arises is wrong.
then the big debate is what exactly does it mean to not be wrong
Huh?
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby 5heaps » Sun Sep 19, 2010 12:00 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
5heaps wrote:
which I'd describe as observing whatever arises.

i dont know how that can be called vipassana, since everything that normally arises is wrong.
Huh?

there are two truths, conventional truth and ultimate truth. ordinary objects of ordinary cognition are illustrations of conventional truths. the point of vipassana is not to realize conventional truths. is there something more particular you are disagreeing with?
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Ben » Sun Sep 19, 2010 12:05 pm

Hi 5heaps

I'm having trouble understanding your statement:
i dont know how that can be called vipassana, since everything that normally arises is wrong.

Could you please explain it?
Thanks

Ben
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby 5heaps » Sun Sep 19, 2010 12:35 pm

Ben wrote:Could you please explain it?

did you see the post above about the two truths?

for example, the hand which appears to a mind apprehending it obstructs the apprehension of its ultimate truth, namely the ultimate particles that make up the hand.

therefore a conventional truth is truth for a deceived mind (ie. one which is unable to realize the nature of reality - ultimate truth). this fake truth is what it means to see, believe, and run a life by way of unchanging, monolithic etc characteristics, even though they dont even slightly exist.
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby pilgrim » Sun Sep 19, 2010 1:28 pm

Vipassana is a quality of the mind - the ability to see things without the taint of delusion. There are many meditative practices that can develop vipassana. The most commonly employed are samatha and sati developed by means of the various practices described in the sati-patthana sutta.
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sun Sep 19, 2010 1:44 pm

5heaps wrote:... the point of vipassana is not to realize conventional truths.


I thought it was to see things as they really are, eg the 3 characteristics?

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sun Sep 19, 2010 1:51 pm

pilgrim wrote:Vipassana is a quality of the mind - the ability to see things without the taint of delusion. There are many meditative practices that can develop vipassana. The most commonly employed are samatha and sati developed by means of the various practices described in the sati-patthana sutta.


Thanks, that looks like a good summary. I think what I was trying to say is that sati "off the cushion" seems quite similar to insight meditation, ie both involve paying close attention to what is happening.

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Phra Chuntawongso » Sun Sep 19, 2010 2:08 pm

:thinking: Vipassana helps us to see that all conditioned phenomenom are impermanent and outside of our control.They arise and they cease.When our mind is focused on on the rising and falling of the abdomin,we see that there is a beginning to the rising and an ending to the arising.Then we have a beginning to the falling and an ending to the falling.It can not continue to rise nor can it continue to fall,it is impermanent and outside of our control,therefore nor self,for if it were self we could tell it to keep rising.Try doing that,it hurts.Yeah I was dumb enough to check it out. :shrug:
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby 5heaps » Sun Sep 19, 2010 2:24 pm

Spiny O'Norman wrote:I thought it was to see things as they really

in what way is the observation of whatever arises an observation of the way things are? can you give an example?

goingforth wrote:it is impermanent and outside of our control,therefore nor self

indeed. but what type of self is it that is not in control? its possible to understand the lack of a controller self independent of the heaps without understanding the remaining factors
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby SamKR » Sun Sep 19, 2010 6:42 pm

Spiny O'Norman wrote:I've been noticing that my vipassana practice and mindfulness practice seem to be basically the same activity, which I'd describe as observing whatever arises.
I'd be interested in your thoughts on this.

Spiny


Mindfulness is a factor of vipassana. While one becomes more and more mindful with Sampajañña one will see the true nature of things as they manifest themselves at the moment - which will boost one's vipassana.


5heaps wrote:
Spiny O'Norman wrote:I thought it was to see things as they really

in what way is the observation of whatever arises an observation of the way things are? can you give an example?


"The observation of whatever arises" means the observation of the things as manifested or as experienced, that is the way things are at this moment.
The observation need not be the observation of "the ultimate truth" of things. The observation is to see how "the conventional truth" changes to deeper truths, and of course finally to "the ultimate truth", if there is any.

For example, in vedananupassana, in the beginning one will observe coarse sensations. But after observation matures, the sensations will manifest themselves as more and more subtle (and finally to the subtlest level). Thus whatever is manifested each moment, is the truth of that moment.

The "ultimate truth" should unfold itself while observation deepens. It is not something that we should project on things beforehand.

for example, the hand which appears to a mind apprehending it obstructs the apprehension of its ultimate truth, namely the ultimate particles that make up the hand.

Just intellectual understanding is not enough for deep insight. How does one know initially, by one's actual experience, that the hand is ultimately nothing but a heap of "wave-particles"? One must begin with the conventional truth that one experiences initially--that this is hand, and while one proceeds observing the hand with Sampajañña he/she will ultimately see its ultimate truth too. Of course, if one misses Sampajañña during observation he/she will stick with the conventional truth which will obstruct the apprehension of ultimate truth, as you said.
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby 5heaps » Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:17 am

SamKR wrote:The "ultimate truth" should unfold itself while observation deepens.

i see. is this unfolding supposed to happen with the mere continuation and cultivation of concentration, or does it also require insight (ie. cessation of ignorance due to performing analysis)?

for example, the hand which appears to a mind apprehending it obstructs the apprehension of its ultimate truth, namely the ultimate particles that make up the hand.

Just intellectual understanding is not enough for deep insight. How does one know initially, by one's actual experience, that the hand is ultimately nothing but a heap of "wave-particles"?

thats precisely my point. one doesnt. simple observance of conventional truth doesnt count as even an intellectual understanding - its simply wrong with regard to reality (ie. the nature of things).
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."
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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Jack » Mon Sep 20, 2010 3:56 pm

It is my understanding that the suttas don't make a distinction between mindfulness meditation and vipassana/insight meditation. Teachers define the difference, if any, their own way.

I think vipassana/insight meditation is a further refinement of mindfulness. Vipassana/insight meditation is specifically looking for the 3 Marks in all phenomena.

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Sep 20, 2010 10:01 pm

Jack wrote:It is my understanding that the suttas don't make a distinction between mindfulness meditation and vipassana/insight meditation. Teachers define the difference, if any, their own way.

But those teachers go back to the Commentaries, and to Suttas like the following:

AN 4.94 Samadhi Sutta: Concentration (Tranquillity and Insight)
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"As for the individual who has attained neither internal tranquillity of awareness nor insight into phenomena through heightened discernment, he should approach an individual who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment... and ask him, 'How should the mind be steadied? How should it be made to settle down? How should it be unified? How should it be concentrated? How should fabrications be regarded? How should they be investigated? How should they be seen with insight?' The other will answer in line with what he has seen & experienced: 'The mind should be steadied in this way. The mind should be made to settle down in this way. The mind should be unified in this way. The mind should be concentrated in this way. Fabrications should be regarded in this way. Fabrications should be investigated in this way. Fabrications should be seen in this way with insight.' Then eventually he [the first] will become one who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment.

AN 4.170 Yuganaddha Sutta: In Tandem
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
On one occasion Ven. Ananda was staying in Kosambi, at Ghosita's monastery. There he addressed the monks, "Friends!"

"Yes, friend," the monks responded.

Ven. Ananda said: "Friends, whoever — monk or nun — declares the attainment of arahantship in my presence, they all do it by means of one or another of four paths. Which four?

"There is the case where a monk has developed insight preceded by tranquillity. As he develops insight preceded by tranquillity, the path is born. He follows that path, develops it, pursues it. As he follows the path, developing it & pursuing it — his fetters are abandoned, his obsessions destroyed.

"Then there is the case where a monk has developed tranquillity preceded by insight. As he develops tranquillity preceded by insight, the path is born. He follows that path, develops it, pursues it. As he follows the path, developing it & pursuing it — his fetters are abandoned, his obsessions destroyed.

"Then there is the case where a monk has developed tranquillity in tandem with insight. As he develops tranquillity in tandem with insight, the path is born. He follows that path, develops it, pursues it. As he follows the path, developing it & pursuing it — his fetters are abandoned, his obsessions destroyed.

"Then there is the case where a monk's mind has its restlessness concerning the Dhamma [Comm: the corruptions of insight] well under control. There comes a time when his mind grows steady inwardly, settles down, and becomes unified & concentrated. In him the path is born. He follows that path, develops it, pursues it. As he follows the path, developing it & pursuing it — his fetters are abandoned, his obsessions destroyed.

"Whoever — monk or nun — declares the attainment of arahantship in my presence, they all do it by means of one or another of these four paths."

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Tue Sep 21, 2010 11:08 am

5heaps wrote:.... one doesnt. simple observance of conventional truth doesnt count as even an intellectual understanding - its simply wrong with regard to reality (ie. the nature of things).


But one can observe, for example, the transitory nature of mental objects as they come and go, how they arise and they cease. One can observe the nature of desires as they come and goes, the wanting and not wanting and potential for suffering.

To me these observations are pointing to the nature of things, to how things really are.

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Tue Sep 21, 2010 11:11 am

SamKR wrote:The "ultimate truth" should unfold itself while observation deepens. It is not something that we should project on things beforehand.



I'm inclined to agree. But in practice I find it's difficult to be truly open-minded and not be looking for signs of the 3 characteristics, or "evidence" of the Noble Truths.

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Re: Vipassana is mindfulness?

Postby 5heaps » Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:46 pm

Spiny O'Norman wrote:To me these observations are pointing to the nature of things, to how things really are.
Theravada Practice of the Four Close Placements of Mindfulness
it says "Only the realization of the nonstaticness of the affecting variables having all these features is the full realization of nonstaticness through close placement of mindfulness". nonstaticness refers to momentariness.
A Japanese man has been arrested on suspicion of writing a computer virus that destroys and replaces files on a victim PC with manga images of squid, octopuses and sea urchins. Masato Nakatsuji, 27, of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as telling police: "I wanted to see how much my computer programming skills had improved since the last time I was arrested."
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