Purpose of meditation

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
Post Reply
alfaaa
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:21 am
Location: India

Purpose of meditation

Post by alfaaa » Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:32 am

Hi there, new member here. :anjali:

I am interested in Buddhism - concepts like dukkha, impermanence etc. - make sense to me. But I am no fan of meditation in the strict, disciplined sense. So my question is, did Buddha mean something else by meditation (like simply reminding oneself that all this is dukkha) rather than the seated meditation which has become popular today?

I am just asking, not saying it is so. Have others also felt the same way about meditation - that it is not some rigid activity we do, rather it's all about reminding oneself that life is impermanent etc?

Thanks. :anjali:

User avatar
robertk
Posts: 2487
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 2:08 am

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by robertk » Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:52 am

See "causes for wisdom" thread..

User avatar
cooran
Posts: 8504
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:32 pm
Location: Queensland, Australia

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by cooran » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:11 am

This might be of assistance to you:

Introduction to Insight Meditation
http://www.budsas.org/ebud/ebmed012.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

With metta,
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

SarathW
Posts: 8242
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by SarathW » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:35 am

There are two main purposes of meditation.
1)Joy - There are seven kind of happiness. Each is higher than the other.
Meditation is the second in the ladder. Five more higher kind of happiness.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nypo.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

2) Insight - Meditation (8th Noble path - Samadhi) is the path to insight.

:meditate:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

User avatar
Alobha
Posts: 566
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 8:27 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by Alobha » Fri Jun 26, 2015 10:12 am

alfaaa wrote:Hi there, new member here. :anjali:

I am interested in Buddhism - concepts like dukkha, impermanence etc. - make sense to me. But I am no fan of meditation in the strict, disciplined sense. So my question is, did Buddha mean something else by meditation (like simply reminding oneself that all this is dukkha) rather than the seated meditation which has become popular today?

Thanks. :anjali:
Welcome to Dhammawheel alfaaa :smile:
Is there any specific reason why you are not a "fan of meditation in the strict, disciplined sense" ? What kinds of meditation objects did you use for that so far?
I am just asking, not saying it is so. Have others also felt the same way about meditation - that it is not some rigid activity we do, rather it's all about reminding oneself that life is impermanent etc?
Formal meditation has its place, but different people benefit from different meditation objects and practice styles. This way of reminding oneself that life is impermanent on many occassions is something that venerable Ajahn Chah, a widely known and respected forest monk, used to do a lot. You can check a talk from him on thishere. It's useful to calm down the mind as it's a highly beneficial topic for contemplation. That is not to say that it replaces formal meditation. The formal meditation is so vast though, including 40 different meditation subjects and the four foundations of mindfulness, that there's usually always an object that people can work with. The "Life meditation" you refer to should not be the only one; walking meditation, metta meditation and other forms all have their place in the training of the mind, too.

Best wishes,
Alobha

User avatar
Thisperson
Posts: 397
Joined: Thu May 15, 2014 4:36 pm

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by Thisperson » Fri Jun 26, 2015 1:21 pm

Through meditation we can cultivate stillness. Through stillness insight arises. We can gain relief from the minds habitual grasping onto things as "self" and see the possibility of a different kind of reality where there is no grasping and therefore no dukkha.

alfaaa
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:21 am
Location: India

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by alfaaa » Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:00 pm

Thanks, everyone.

For me, meditation has always been an exercise in futility. You observe your breath, lose yourself in thoughts, get back to the breath, rinse, repeat. It is like you're going in circles. It doesn't take you anywhere, and you end up doing the same thing over and over.

befriend
Posts: 1107
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:39 am

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by befriend » Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:46 pm

heres an example of what meditation does, i decided to make today a full day of meditation in the four postures and in daily activities, after 2 hours of this, i decided to listen to some music, i sensed the music as being so impermanent, that it didn't really exist, and did not enjoy it, i turned it off because of this, then i listened to the birds singing and felt that it was disgusting, seeing into the second characteristic of phenomenon suffering, then i had an insight that its my liking and desire for these birds singing that is also disgusting, and i felt some energy of desire leaving the top of my head, this made me involuntarily smile, and my mind felt beautiful, because i had let go of some of a defiled emotion. so this inspired me to keep practicing by seeing reality clearly we can let go of our unhealthy not reality based emotions so if i keep doing this i assume i could get rid of more of the defilements until i realize nibbana.
nothing can destroy a man who has lived a pure life

dhammarelax
Posts: 1087
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2014 7:59 pm

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by dhammarelax » Fri Jun 26, 2015 6:40 pm

alfaaa wrote:Hi there, new member here. :anjali:

I am interested in Buddhism - concepts like dukkha, impermanence etc. - make sense to me. But I am no fan of meditation in the strict, disciplined sense. So my question is, did Buddha mean something else by meditation (like simply reminding oneself that all this is dukkha) rather than the seated meditation which has become popular today?

I am just asking, not saying it is so. Have others also felt the same way about meditation - that it is not some rigid activity we do, rather it's all about reminding oneself that life is impermanent etc?

Thanks. :anjali:
As Bhante Vimalaramsi puts it life is meditation and meditation is life, you dont need to sit to meditate I find it easier to progress through when I meditate when I am doing all my activities during the day, if you are interested in his teachings check his web site at http://www.dhammasukha.org" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

smile all the time
dhammarelax
Even if the flesh & blood in my body dry up, leaving just the skin, tendons, & bones, I will use all my human firmness, human persistence and human striving. There will be no relaxing my persistence until I am the first of my generation to attain full awakening in this lifetime. ed. AN 2.5

User avatar
daverupa
Posts: 5980
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:58 pm

Re: Purpose of meditation

Post by daverupa » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:01 pm

alfaaa wrote:...an exercise in futility. You observe your breath, lose yourself in thoughts, get back to the breath, rinse, repeat.
This seems like a common meditation method, but... where did you learn it? It's rather incomplete, if this is the whole of it...

More importantly, what does the rest of your practice look like? Perhaps some experience with daily mindfulness or daily guarding of the sense spheres? How is it in your case?
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 22 guests