Mindfulness and Beyond

Who is Walking?

 

  • Is the walker separate from the walking?

  • Is there one activity going on – namely just walking or are there two activities – walking and walker?

  • If there are two, do they collide with each other or stay apart?

  • Does the walker walk or not walk?

  • Does the walker start before the walking or start when the foot first moves?

  • At what point does one go from sitting or standing to walking?

  • Can we find the beginning of walking? If we cannot find the moment that begins walking,          then is it appropriate to refer to walking?

  • I know that when I walk I see the body is moving. Am I moving?  

 

12 Explorations on Emptiness (In alphabetical order)

  1. A human being lacks self-existence. Body, feelings, perceptions, thoughts, consciousness mutually depend on each other AND the environment until these supportive faculties break down. A person abides empty of their own existence owing to such conditions for their support.

  2. A person finds himself or herself afflicted. The afflictions come from within and without, internally and externally. The person finds themselves in an empty village. There are no threats hiding in the village. There are no longer perceptions of terror, via any of the senses. Emptiness is the mind empty of perceived threats, of unresolved issues.

  3. An item does not have self-existence. Take a car. The engine is not the car, nor are the wheels, seats and dashboard. The car consists of a forming together of numerous parts. The car is empty of any self-existence. There is no self-existence and there is no separate self-existence, nor oneness of self and other.  The same principle applies to human beings and all else.

  4. Emptiness is a like a large bath of pure water. You put several tablespoons of salt into the bath of water but the pure water does not lose its flavour. An expansive heart and mind may have to deal with salt but its taste and significance fades away. If your put large tablespoons of salt into a glass, you will keep tasting the salt.

  5. Emptiness is like space. You cannot take hold of a box of paints and paint anything, good, bad or indifferent on to space.

  6. Emptiness is the mind Gone Great (mahajatti), such as the mind and heart of expansive love, kindness and friendship (metta) The Great Mind is empty of animosity and revenge.

  7. Emptiness shows that Mindfulness, Concentration and Inquiry abide empty of itself and empty of other.

  8. Emptiness shows the absence of any real identity, core, essence, soul or Self.

  9. Insights and realisations show the insubstantiality and lack of solidity of the body, forms, perceptions, feelings, mental activities and consciousness. Insubstantiality and lack of solidity in the human makeup confirm Emptiness.

  10. The mind/body/environment undergoes adaption, change and impermanence. The so-called world remains subject to causes and conditions. This world abides empty of permanence, eternity and an unchanging nature.

  11. The present is empty of what is not present. Whatever one concentrates on is empty of what is not concentrated on. Whatever is concentrated on is made up of what is not concentrated on.

  12. There is a deep sense of the Boundless (appamana). The Boundless reveals itself in the emptiness of so-called ‘obstructions.’ Obstructions or hindrances have no ‘self’ existence. Emptiness is revealed equally in sentient and insentience, in the heavens and hells of existence.

 

 

Five primary Ways to view Meditation

 

1.      Meditation is mindfulness with a formal posture. Meditation is a practice for calm and insight.

 

2.      Some traditions regard meditation as a prescription, a solution. This kind of meditation adheres strictly to method and technique to enhance concentration and discipline. The meditator applies the method or technique once or twice a day from 15 minutes up to an hour to develop calm and clarity.

 

3.      Meditation is a depth of concentration that uncovers a range of experiences welcome and unwelcome. Meditation includes use of form and techniques and absence of form and techniques.

 

4.      A state of meditation arises spontaneously. You suddenly find yourself experiencing quietude of feelings, stillness, and a sense of harmony with the world around. Thoughts fade away, the brain cells become quiet and there is a genuine sense of inner well being. In this meditative space, the elements of stillness and silence become predominant. There is a palpable sense of the extraordinary presence without division or fragmentation.

 

5.      Meditation is a rare mystical state that transcends the conventional world. Some associate meditation as synonymous with an ultimate state for consciousness. The implication is that few reach this state of meditation. To be in a state of meditation is to be with God.

  

Knowing Spiritual Feelings and Worldly Feelings

 

  • Recognise spiritual feelings that nourish clarity and wisdom.

  • Recognise spiritual feelings that fuel the ego.

  • Recognise worldly feelings that support clarity and wisdom.

  • Recognise worldly feelings that fuel the ego.

  • Realise that realm of peace where perceptions and feelings have no foothold.

 

 The Practices of Recollection of the Essential Teachings

 

You may find it worthwhile to remember several of the core teachings of the Buddha-Dharma. These include the:

 

Three Jewels, Four Truths of the Noble Ones, Noble Eightfold Path, Four Applications of Mindfulness, Five Hindrances, Three Characteristics of Existence and Five Fold Training.

 

  • THREE JEWELS: Buddha, Dharma, Sangha.

  • FOUR NOBLE TRUTHS. Sufferings, Causes and Conditions, Resolution, Way to Resolution.

  •  NOBLE EIGHTFOLD PATH. Right understanding (right view), right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right meditative concentration.

  •  FOUR APPLICATIONS  OF MINDFULNESS. Body, Feelings, States of Mind, Dharma

  • FIVE HINDRANCES. Greed/blind pursuit of pleasure, negativity/anger, boredom/apathy, restlessness/anxiety, doubt/fear.

  •  THREE CHARACTERISTICS. Impermanence, unsatisfactoriness, non-self (impersonal).

  •  FIVE-FOLD TRAINING. Ethics, meditative concentration, wisdom, (transformative) knowledge and knowing liberation.

  May all beings live mindfully  

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 Christopher Titmuss's Blog and Websites

1. www.christophertitmussblog.net  Critiques, issues, politics, book reviews etc 

2. www.anengagedlife.org What you need to know to live an engaged life

 

3. www.insightmeditation.org Dharma teachings, annual schedule…

 

4. www.christophertitmuss.net  Books, Videos, Audio Teachings ...

 

5. www.MeditationinIndia.org  annual Sarnath February Retreats and other retreats...

6. www.dharmayatraworldwide.org  Annual Pilgrimage in late July in southern France.

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