Re: [Meditation Society of America] Re: Mindfullness meditation
- Hi Sonam !
Thanks for your thoughtful post, that's exactly what I needed to know. So, in other words, "right mindfulness" is not letting the mind wander while you are doing something, but instead being present and conscious of what you are doing and keeping your focus and thoughts solely on the action that you are doing, for the benefit of having a sharper focus or ability to not wander while on sitting meditation. Right ?
Thanks for taking the time to answer this !
DanielOn 1/29/07, Marc Moss <jellybean0729@...> wrote:Dear Danieal,Dear Daniel,There are many different options available to suit an array of dispositions. Here are a few options from me, and I hope others will oblige with their own suggestions:Simply, be present in each thought as you conduct your activities. As you take a breath in, be aware that you are breathing in; as you breathe out, be aware that you are exhaling. Simply try to keep the mind on the activity you are doing. Try to be aware when the mind wanders off onto other thoughts, and gently bring it back to the activity. If you are shaping gold, be completely absorbed in the activity of shaping the gold. If you are placing a diamond into a mounting, be aware that you are doing this. Each little movement of mind should be devoted to the activity. At least, you will develop better product. Your mind will be devoted single-pointedly to your product and this should render less mistakes.Try to keep your breathing even and equal in inhale and exhale. This kind of breathing is precisely the manner in which a healthy individual breathes when they are "in their mode". When we are content, free of anxiety and stress or excitement, we breathe like this. Forcing ourselves to breathe in this manner will assist in calming the mind. "Joy can bring a smile, and smile can bring joy."
Now, as these activities are movements of mind, we are actually training the mind to reduce and eliminate distractions to benefit our sitting meditation. To have a direct perception of emptiness, you cannot have a movement of mind. You have to develop your mental faculties in such a way that the distractions are completely eliminated, and movement of mind is a distraction. During deepest meditation, one is withdrawn from the senses. If your mind moves to a sound, you are having a movement of mind and that prevents one from samadhi. So, during your everyday work, it is best if you can place your mind again and again on just the activity that you are pursuing, and eliminate any other thoughts that are of no consequence to the task.Since emptiness and karma are intimately connected, if you can use your imagination to create good karma during your tasks, this is best. Since you work with diamonds, you are working with something that many sages used as a symbol for emptiness. A diamond is the hardest natural substance on earth. Only a diamond can cut another diamond. Emptiness metaphorically can even cut diamonds...that is the metaphor used in the Diamond Cutter Sutra (mistranslated simply as Diamond Sutra, but Vajrachedika means diamond cutter, an important point in the translation for its valuable analogy), and emptiness even cuts itself. After the direct experience of emptiness in the first level of form realm meditation, one understands this analogy, understands that emptiness surrounds you. If you were surrounded by a wall of pure diamond, clear and colorless, you wouldn't even know it...so it is with emptiness. So, in your activities, since things do not inherently exhist, it is very powerful to imagine that you are doing the deeds that you are doing for the benefit of all other beings.As you are shaping the gold, imagine that you are giving precious gifts to all beings. As you place the diamond, imagine that you are teaching about emptiness to students whose minds are ripe. As you polish the gold, you can imagine that you are teaching all beings the Buddha's teachings, the holy Dharma, or that you are giving any material assistance to beings. At the conclusion of your task, dedicate any merit that you have created towards being able to achieve enlightenment for all beings, or towards learning a teaching with which you are struggling. Because things do not inherently exist, it is important to remember that the task you are doing, the objects with which you work and even YOU are void of existing inherently. That means that the data that your mind is organizing from the senses that have collected it (data) is being forced by karma to generate the images that you see and interact with...but better karma would organize that data differently. That is how tantra works - using the karmic mechanism in such a way to render a result faster. So, have no concrete senses of self and action and object...for that is not the way they truly exist. See it as a flow that is forced to render the waves of experience now from the drop into that stream from a past action.When you make wedding rings, it can be very beneficial to imagine that your efforts are benefitting the future couple, and you are giving lasting love and compassion to all beings.There are many interesting scientific studies on focused thought such as what we are discussing and the benefits even in material forms in our surroundings. Focusing your thoughts of compassion and love into your work is sure to have some benefit to those who will purchase and own them. And it will benefit your mind so much more.Dedication is very powerful in preventing normal, ignorant karma from being used up. You simply make a dedication with heartfelt sincerity toward the goal, and it is much more powerful.Does that help you in any way Daniel? I hope so.SonamAs long as space remains, as long as living beings remain, until then - may I too remain to dispel the sufferings of the world. - Master Shantideva
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"Today, a young man tripping on LSD realized that all matter is merely energy condensed through a slow vibration, we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, life is only a dream, and we are all our own imagination. And now here's Tom with the weather. Tom?"
Daniel Bonekeeper wrote:
And I'm still feeling like I haven't had a satisfactory answer ! LOL
Let me put it in a different way: let's say that I work as a jewerly maker... I get gold bars and diamonds and transform them into wedding rings. I do that all day long. How can I use "right mindfulness" while doing this ?
See the doing as just that.
The transformation of gold bars and diamonds of a particular shape and form morphing into a different shape and form.
The transformation of shape and form brings about a substantial increase in the value, but nothing has really changed.
The differential value of a wedding ring as compared to the basic ingredients........how does this come about?
Obviously the differential value is due to a "valuer" who values differently.
Otherwise, a wedding ring is just the summation of the raw materials.
Exactly in the same way, a diamond is a DIAMOND to someone, otherwise it is no different to a piece of coal.
Meaning, agenda, goals to be be achieved (spiritual or material), techniques to achieve these goals, asserting and defending these techniques/ these goals as they have themselves become one's self identity.....
.....this entire enchilada .........is of relevance to whom?
As............ through a pair of hands ........ gold bars takes the shape of rings and diamonds get set....
.....being in the quest.....
......to whom is this changing transformation........a changing spectacle?
- Daniel,Correct. But a deeper application as prescribed by the Buddha in the second turning was that having right mindfulness also applies to correct world view. This is a difficult one to maintain and it involves the understanding and application of emptiness.Things do not inherently exist, they are not self powered and they are not concrete... they are ever changing and are dependent on consciousness for their origination. Now, in an earlier school interpretation on this, one can say that things dependently arise due to causes...like manufacturers caused this computer. But when treated with the ultimate, this does not aid in the complete removal of afflictions. The FACT that you have given information to others in the past is the reason you are able to receive information now...via this computer. Cause and effect are separated by a greater gap than we normally see, and having wrong view would be thinking that a concrete, permanent, self powered thing in front of you is a result of buying it. That is a different cause. Try it this way:If you lied to a person and told them something that you believed would get you a lot of money and the person GAVE you the money, you would be led to believe that the lie caused the attractive result of receiving the money. Even Jesus would say this is not the case (reaping what you sow). But, if a lie is the cause, lies should always produce attractive results. You are receiving the money, the attractive result of getting, because you gave in the past. The lie becomes a cause for a future result (ie people won't believe what you tell them, other people lie to you, etc). So, you see correct world-view is seeing that the cause and the result are relative. But, in emptiness, there is no you, there is no creating of karma, and there is no karma...because they are just flows, waves...projections. This does not mean that you can just do whatever because things are empty. They exist because they are projections...they are not projections because they exist. This is correct world-view, right mindfulness.This helps us by planting the correct karmic seeds to ripen beneficially for us and others in the future. You see, knowing that the computer is dependent on the manufacturer only tells you about the "how" of phenomena, it does little about the perceptual laws that are working, or karmic laws. When you understand that the things that are arising within your perceptual field because of your actions, you can understand their emptiness, their voidness of self-nature...that that is the ONLY ontological status that they have, the only state of being. They are arising because you created them within the parameters of this perceptual law...and it is within this same perceptual law that you can create the correct karmic seeds to one day see yourself as an enlightened being.If things were NOT empty, that is if they DID exist from their own side and had some essence or self-nature, they could not undergo change and then the whole scope of the Four Arya Truths could not work. Suffering would always affect us, things would always come AT us. This is not the case, for the Buddha achieved enlightenment. What does nirvana mean? Nirvana literally means a "blowing out", the fires of ignorance. When we blow out these fires of ignorance, we see reality as it really is. Currently, from this ignorance, there is a disparity between the way things appear and the way they actually are.Having right mindfulness is maintaining the correct world-view and using the mechanism correctly to see yourself become an enlightened being to benefit others. That which we do to others is exactly doing them to an aspect of ourselves, and that is what brings about our results.Bless you and if I can find any more information for you, please let me know. May we all see each other in Tushita!!!SonamAs long as space remains, as long as living beings remain, until then - may I too remain to dispel the sufferings of the world. - Master Shantideva
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- Daniel,Here's a terrific point to share:In a room, there are three beings. There's a human, a preta, and an enlightened being. In the middle of the room, there is a diamond, a large pure diamond. The light refracts and the human sees yellow. From the preta's angle, he sees blue...and the enlightened being sees red. Who's perception is valid?A valid perception is anything which appears to an unaffected state of mind. Unaffected means that it is not under the influence of alcohol or an acid trip, on a moving vehicle, or under severe emotional stress. Therefore, they are all having a valid perception.Now, it is true that the value of things is in the one applying the value to the thing. But, the thing itself has a basis for which we are all having parallel perceptions toward. That means that if someone tells you that a dog could just as easily be a shoe to you, they are seriously mistaken. A dog and a shoe have different CONVENTIONAL bases for definitions. A dog is not something that you put on your feet to keep them warm, and you don't pet shoes. A failure to understand the conventional is what becomes defined as insane, or uncommon. They do not ULTIMATELY exist by the definitions that we give them, but they are a product of your perceptions and to deny that they exist in a manner that contradicts they're conventional reality is borderline nihilism. They are empty of inherent existence. Emptiness does not DENY they're conventional existence but DEFINE it.If you want to see that diamond as red, you have to get up and move from your spot to where the enlightened being is...seeing it red. If you do not want to see it blue, don't do the things that are gonna make you get up and sit where the preta sees it refract as blue. We have to make a change, we have to get up and move to another point where the light is refracting in a different color...or better yet, no color.SonamAs long as space remains, as long as living beings remain, until then - may I too remain to dispel the sufferings of the world. - Master Shantideva
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- --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "Daniel Bonekeeper"
> And I'm still feeling like I haven't had a satisfactory answer ! LOL
> Let me put it in a different way: let's say that I work as a jewerly
> maker... I get gold bars and diamonds and transform them into
> I do that all day long. How can I use "right mindfulness" whiledoing this ?
Undivided present being aware, with no division between the one being
aware, and that of which one is aware.
Relaxed, open, aware (not the sense of effort of one apart trying to
enter into or be the moment as is).
Being the moment as is, no separation, no division.
Middle-wayed being-aware: no separated self involved in speculating
about its past or future. No extraneous thought needed or invested in.
"When eating, eat. When sleeping, sleep." When making a ring, fully
attentive to and as each moment of ring-construction.
- --- In email@example.com, medit8ionsociety
> snip of lots of what Kir Li Molari would describe asKir Li Molari has been shown to be correct in his observation, with
> "Words! Words! Words!" and a pretty good example of what the
> pundit in the Zen tea story was doing.
many examples having been provided.
> Mulitple critical judgements noted!Take away unneeded opinion and see what remains.