Correct meditation/mindfulness

Discussion of meditation in the Mahayana and Vajrayana traditions.
Doomguy93
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Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby Doomguy93 » Mon Jul 01, 2013 6:26 pm

So I've been trying to improve my meditation for the past few weeks, I've seen improvements but I just wanted some input on what I've been experiencing. When I first sit down to meditate my mind is generally distracted, after 10 to 15 minutes (sometimes 5 minutes on a good day) I can quiet the mind down and only focus on the breathing for the most part but sometimes I still notice thoughts is it normal to take that long to quiet the mind down?
With mindfulness outside of meditation, is it the simply awareness of the body/mind/perceptions those perceptions/mind objects pass, and awareness of the body? The reason why I ask this is because the general explanation is pretty simplistic, yet so hard to actually achieve sometimes.

DGA
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby DGA » Mon Jul 01, 2013 6:36 pm


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lobster
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby lobster » Tue Jul 02, 2013 1:44 pm

When the mind has to sit with itself, with us 'in attendance', its distracted nature becomes apparent. Don't fight or cling to notions of what should be happening.

It is what it is.

In time we settle into [insert nature of practice] and our settling is sometimes unsettled, unsettling and sometimes settling, settled and we prefer that . . . both are important but neither is preferred by the mind . . .

It is where it is . . . :namaste:

Hope that is helpful :popcorn:

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avisitor
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby avisitor » Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:14 am

Please update us on how your meditation is going.
How do you see mindfulness now??

dimeo
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby dimeo » Sun Oct 06, 2013 3:22 am


Anicca
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby Anicca » Sat Jan 04, 2014 6:56 pm

Hello Friends,
Although I have learned a lot about Buddhism in the past year, I am fairly new in the actual practice of meditation. I have read several mantras or thoughts to meditate on including the simple task of controlling one's breath but when I actually practice it I do not feel more aware or calm. In addition, after having an ACL reconstructive surgery on me knee I find it difficult to sit in a Lotus Position or Half Lotus. Can someone inform me of something I should actually visualize or think of or recite when I meditate so I can achieve better results and perhaps any pointers for a novice in regards to sitting position or anything else?

Metta,
Anicca

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justsit
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby justsit » Sat Jan 04, 2014 7:39 pm

There are many types of meditation, but basic Buddhist meditation, especially when beginning, does not involve "thinking about" or visualization. Rather, the focus is on the breath in order to calm the mind. is some basic meditation instruction. Keeping the attention on the breath will help tame the wild monkey mind. Frequent short sessions (5-10 minutes to start) are better than marathons.

Lotus/half-lotus are preferable, but not absolutely necessary, as long as you maintain the other components of correct posture - straight spine, etc., as discussed . Due to your knee issues, when using a chair, make sure you are not leaning against the back and your feet are flat on the floor, or use a pillow under the feet if needed. Trying to meditate in a lying position is mostly discouraged.

And remember - relax!

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Qing Tian
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby Qing Tian » Mon Jan 06, 2014 8:47 pm

In my personal experience I have found that the advice to 'focus on the breath' is somewhat misleading - more a wrong choice of words. Focus implies concentration, and concentration implies control. In anapanasati it is sufficient to simply observe the ebb and flow of the breath, neither focussing nor controlling it. This can be something of a slippery concept as the mind just loves to latch onto things and play with them! And so, once again in my experience, most people have a bit of trouble at the beginning because their intention to relax the mind and focus on the breathing leads to a forced breathing pattern that actually increases tension. In letting go of the 'focus' part and merely observing, the breath becomes softer and more natural, with natural and subtle rhythms (it's not a metronome!). As the practice deepens one can become aware of the the simplicity of observation and often the first glimmer of the mind set free. Of course, as soon as this is noted the mind latches onto it and refocuses and we have to start all over again :smile:

It takes time and patience to move from a state of expectation to a state of simple acceptance.

TL:DR take home message: do not control the breath during anapanasati


Disclaimer: the above is based on my own experience. Your experiences may vary.
“Not till your thoughts cease all their branching here and there, not till you abandon all thoughts of seeking for something, not till your mind is motionless as wood or stone, will you be on the right road to the Gate.”

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Kaccāni
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby Kaccāni » Tue Mar 25, 2014 2:45 pm

Very true.

Observe your breath without controlling it.
Shush! I'm doing nose-picking practice!

Seeker of Wisdom
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Re: Correct meditation/mindfulness

Postby Seeker of Wisdom » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:52 pm



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