It seems like you are equating mindfulness with vipassana. For me, vipassana, spontaneous insight, is possible when there are other conditions present, like harmonious attention, samadhi, equanimity. It would seem rare that someone sits down and begins to experience vipassana without settling into the 4 areas of satipatthana, hence your mention of careful scrutiny.robertk wrote: ↑Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:48 amthe most important part, imho, comes a few stanzas later in the satipatthan sutta where it says
Atthi kayoti va panassa sati paccupatthita hoti = "Or, indeed, his mindfulness is established, with the thought: 'The body exists.'"
the Commentary adds "Mindfulness is established for the yogi through careful scrutiny. He thinks: There is the body, but there is no being, no person, no woman, no man, no soul, nothing pertaining to a soul, no "I", nothing that is mine, no one, and nothing belonging to anyone [kayoti ca attli, na satto, na puggalo, na itthi, na puriso, na atta, na attaniyam naham, na mama, na koci, na kassaciti evam assa sati paccupatthita hoti].
A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
Just a note that this is not Zen meditation. Bodhidharma, legendary founder of Zen in China, used a technical term translated as “wall gazing,” that should probably not be translated as literally staring at a wall or anything else, but rather “direct looking at reality” just as the constant Zen exhortation to “look at the ground beneath your feet” does not mean “ stare at the ground and trip over your own feet” and has little to do with soil examination.
Last edited by Caodemarte on Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
Prior to developing mindfulness the mind will wander away from the act of being mindful. We all know this. That act must be in regard to whatever arises, even the act itself. Think of any sutta about mindfulness, "While [doing such and such], he knows, "I am [doing such and such]"". That second part of "he knows" is what is easily forgotten and is what needs to be developed so that it doesn't drift out of the forefront (at first it is a thought about being mindful but it must become more, it must become the act). "Established in front of him" means that the act of being mindful has been so thoroughly worked into one's mind that no matter what arises, the mind will never wander away from the act of knowing, "I am doing [such and such]". In the suttas in which this phrase appears it is often in reference to a fairly developed monk of the verge of attainment.