Matticus, you are to be congratulated on your interest in meditation and your efforts at practice! Going it alone can be darn near impossible. My suggestion, and I suspect a lot of others' suggestion as as well, is, if at all possible, to find a meditation teacher to help with your practice.Matticus wrote:Also, I don't really have a lineage. I've obtained most of my knowledge from reading the work of Master Nan Haui Chin. I don't really know If that would really qualify him as my Guru, but I can actually picture his photograph fairly well. Would that be appropriate or should I choose an Image of Buddha or Boddhisattva or something. One more thing, I stumbled onto the practice of Kasina last night, focusing on a candle seems like a reasonable way of practicing holding a sustained image in my mind. Any thoughts? Again, thank you all!
- Since you are interested in the teachings of Master Nan Haui Chin (I'm not familiar with him or his teachings--I had to look him up just now), have you looked into whether he has any direct disciples that also teach?
- Does he teach in a particular tradition that you are attracted to (Chan, Taoism)? If so, have you looked to see if there are teachers in the tradition that you gravitate to?
- Have you looked to see what your local area has to offer for meditation practice and instruction? I know that sometimes it can be hard to find a local resource to learn meditation. Please do take a look around and see what you can find, you may be surprised!
- Mindfulness in Plain English: Revised and Expanded Edition by Bhante Henepola Gunaratana: http://www.amazon.com/Mindfulness-Plain ... in+english" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;. It takes a Theravada view, but is still very nice.
- Opening the Hand of Thought: Foundations of Zen Buddhist Practice by Kosho Uchiyama Roshi: http://www.amazon.com/Opening-Hand-Thou ... of+thought" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;. Gives a wonderful perspective on Zen practice with instructions and view. Generally applicable to sitting practice
- The Practice of Tranquillity & Insight: A Guide to Tibetan Buddhist Mediation by Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche as an excellent starting point: http://www.amazon.com/Practice-Tranquil ... nd-Insight" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;.