Body in the Body...

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Body in the Body...

Postby Kingdubrock » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:54 pm

How do you understand this?
If you compare just a few commentaries on the Satipatthana you find different things.
Bhante Gunaratana seems to claim that the individual parts that comprise the body can each be seen as "a body". So to be mindful of some aspect or part of the body is being mindful of the body (or maybe A body) in the (larger) body. (This may be supportable with suttas and comentaries etc but it kind of sounds like reaching to me).
U Silananda in the book The Four Foundations of Mindfulness just leaves it alone, and doesnt elaborate (sort of what I do in my own practice).
Thich Nhat Hanh on the other hand in Transformation and Healing just goes right ahead and says mindfulness of the body in the body means that the subject and object become "one". There is no separation between the mindfulness and the object of mindfulness, they come together (in, I assume, his "inter-are" kind of way).

Hmm.

Edit: Just to thicken the plot, Analayo actually omits "in the body" in his translation and fine book on the Satipatthana
Last edited by Kingdubrock on Mon Aug 19, 2013 9:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby equilibrium » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:07 pm

Is that not the same as:
For everything that exist it must depend on something else.....except Nibbana.
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby Kingdubrock » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:17 pm

equilibrium wrote:Is that not the same as:
For everything that exist it must depend on something else.....except Nibbana.


Do you mean in general or are you refering to one of the interpretations above?
TNH's comment, at least if one is reasonably familiar with his other writings, might be seen that way. He tends to harmonize Zen "nonduality" and emptiness, Hua Yen interprenetration and regular dependent origination in his concept or term "interbeing" and describering how things "inter-are". Even so I dont get how he ties "awerness of the body IN THE BODY" with that kind of stuff without explanation. a long time ago I heard a talk from him, and the way he spoke about it suggested he meant something along the lines of an immersive, direct experience of the kinds of vibrations, sensations and whatnot that U Ba Khin & Goenka draw attention to, while following the instructions of say Anapanasati, rather than a sort of disassociated observer examining parts of the body according to a formula.
Actually, to be honest thats pretty much how I sense it or relate to it. So his "one with" language in this book surprised me a little. I might get what he means but I could see it sort of creating misunderstanding of what he might be trying to say.


Edit:
Actually later in the same book he elaborates but its still not much clearer. Basically he states that the mindfulness itself is the "subject" and, say, the breath - is the "object". And when the mindfulness "shines its light" on the object it (the object) is "transformed" into something else (like a baby from two parents maybe), sort of. Like breathing becomes "conscious breathing". Ok, kind of transmission-y and intuitive, but he doesnt really tie it back to "what or who" is observing, or "the knower" or the "mere" or "bare" awareness (free from elaboration etc). As such "no-self" is perhaps implied. Just mindfulness, an object of mindfulness, coming together and no imputed owner of the experience. I guess. I dont know. Maybe its just a translation thing, or from a talk with a particular audience who might follow what he is saying.


But yeah... Body in the body. What's that?
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby kirk5a » Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:57 pm

In my opinion that language is a way of communicating what is explained in MN 1, which points out the difference between "perceiving [x] as [x]", resulting in "conceiving" regarding that. While the goal is "directly knowing" in order to "fully understand it"
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby santa100 » Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:59 pm

Ven. Bodhi's note from "In the Buddha's Words" is pretty straight-forward:
Ps says the repetition “contemplating the body in the body” (kaye kayanupassi) has the purpose of precisely determining the object of contemplation and of isolating that object from others with which it might be confused. Thus, in this practice, the body should be contemplated as such, and not one’s feelings, ideas, and emotions concerning it. The phrase also means that the body should be contemplated simply as a body and not as a man, a woman, a self, or a living being. Parallel considerations apply to the repetitions with regard to each of the other three establishments of mindfulness..
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby Kingdubrock » Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:40 am

Thanks folks.

santa100 wrote:Ven. Bodhi's note from "In the Buddha's Words" is pretty straight-forward:
Ps says the repetition “contemplating the body in the body” (kaye kayanupassi) has the purpose of precisely determining the object of contemplation and of isolating that object from others with which it might be confused. Thus, in this practice, the body should be contemplated as such, and not one’s feelings, ideas, and emotions concerning it. The phrase also means that the body should be contemplated simply as a body and not as a man, a woman, a self, or a living being. Parallel considerations apply to the repetitions with regard to each of the other three establishments of mindfulness..


I'd say thats clear and makes sense.
I wonder what the basis for Gunaratana's interpretation is.
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby pegembara » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:04 am

Body in body is also referring to the in and out breaths.

"But what are bodily fabrications? What are verbal fabrications? What are mental fabrications?"

"In-&-out breaths are bodily fabrications. Directed thought & evaluation are verbal fabrications. Perceptions & feelings are mental fabrications."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


"And how is mindfulness immersed in the body developed, how is it pursued, so as to be of great fruit & great benefit?

"There is the case where a monk — having gone to the wilderness, to the shade of a tree, or to an empty building — sits down folding his legs crosswise, holding his body erect and setting mindfulness to the fore. Always mindful, he breathes in; mindful he breathes out.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html



...kāyesu kāyaññatarāhaṃ, bhikkhave, evaṃ vadāmi yadidaṃ assāsapassāsā. Tasmātiha, bhikkhave, kāye kāyānupassī tasmiṃ samaye bhikkhu viharati ātāpī sampajāno satimā vineyya loke abhijjhādomanassaṃ.

...Monks, when I say, ‘inhalation-exhalation,’ it is like another body in the body. Observing body in body in this way, monks, at that time a monk dwells ardent with awareness and constant thorough understanding of impermanence, having removed craving and aversion towards this world [of mind and matter].
http://www.tipitaka.org/stp-pali-eng-parallel
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby Sylvester » Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:25 am

Kingdubrock wrote:
Edit: Just to thicken the plot, Analayo actually omits "in the body" in his translation and fine book on the Satipatthana


No, he does not. It's actually in there, but he is reading the locative kāye in kāye kāyānupassī viharati as a referential locative, rather than a spatial one. The spatial locative is translated as "he abides contemplating the body in the body", while the referential locative is translated as "he abides contemplating the body with reference to the body". Or as Ven Analayo translates it -

...in regard to the body, a monk abides contemplating the body...
.

The referential locative is probably the better reading, since kāyānupassī literally translates as "as a body contemplator". Which sounds better -

- he abides as a body contemplator with reference to the body; or
- he abides as a body contemplator in the body?
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Re: Body in the Body...

Postby Kingdubrock » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:00 am

Sylvester wrote:
Kingdubrock wrote:
Edit: Just to thicken the plot, Analayo actually omits "in the body" in his translation and fine book on the Satipatthana


No, he does not. It's actually in there, but he is reading the locative kāye in kāye kāyānupassī viharati as a referential locative, rather than a spatial one. The spatial locative is translated as "he abides contemplating the body in the body", while the referential locative is translated as "he abides contemplating the body with reference to the body". Or as Ven Analayo translates it -

...in regard to the body, a monk abides contemplating the body...
.

The referential locative is probably the better reading, since kāyānupassī literally translates as "as a body contemplator". Which sounds better -

- he abides as a body contemplator with reference to the body; or
- he abides as a body contemplator in the body?


Thank you Sylvester.
I am probably misunderstanding the nuances of what you are telling me. I can't read or translate Pali (or any other language) into English, so Im in the dark. But Im not sure what you mean when you say "no he does not" when you then explain (or so it seems to me) that he has chosen to render a word into English in an entirely different way than most other readings of the text I have seen previously. His decision to do this ends up with "body in the body" not being there (in English anyway). Its sufficiently different that he doesnt even have to explain its (usually) cryptic nature like Gunaratana (or TNH) did.
Anyway, its good to know. I appreciate the insight. If that flexibility is in the word it might explain why U Silananda doesnt explain it in his book. Kind of like a non-issue. Even if we went with "body contemplator in the body", I am still a bit mystified by Gunaratana's explanation.
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