Almost every meditation teacher and book I've come across presents breath meditation as the end all - be all, the one shoe that fits everyone. If this was the case, why can nearly 39 other meditation objects be found in the Tipitaka?
Perhaps the Buddha gave us such a variety of options because he knew
, depending on the individual's personality, some meditation objects would work better than others.
I often hear dhamma teachers saying that they focus their lessons on Anapanasati (breath meditation) because it was the method the Buddha himself used to reach enlightenment, and that it can fulfill all 4 establishments of mindfulness at once
. But maybe the breath is too subtle of an object for some people to start with? Maybe it would be better for them if they fulfilled the 4 establishments at a slower pace, using one of the other meditation objects?
Did you know that the earliest lay Buddhist communities probably didn't even do breath meditation? Their primary objects of contemplation were likely the 6 recollections (buddha, dhamma, sangha, morality, generosity, and the devas), with the first recollection on the buddha being the primary object.
If this is the case, why is it that I can barely find a book, a dhamma talk, ect on something OTHER than the breath?
I basically have 2 questions:
- Do you think dhamma teachers should go into more detail about the other meditation objects for those who may not be ready for breath meditation?
- If I wanted to buy a book, right now
, on how to meditate on something other than the breath
, which book should I get? Does one, other than the Visuddhimagga, even exist?