Meditation and Mindfulness

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
User avatar
one_awakening
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Aug 20, 2017 6:04 am

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by one_awakening » Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:33 am

DooDoot wrote: Mindfulness is said to mean to 'remember' or 'recollect
I don't agree. Mindfulness means to keep something in mind
Katamā ca bhikkhave, sammāsati? Idha, bhikkhave, bhikkhu kāye kāyānupassī viharati ātāpī sampajāno satimā, vineyya loke abhij­jhā­do­manas­saṃ

And what, bhikkhus is right mindfulness? Here, bhikkhus, a bhikkhu dwells contemplating (observing; seeing) the body in the body, ardent, clearly comprehending, mindful, having removed covetousness and displeasure in regard to the world.
Here The Buddha mentions clear comprehending. To me, that means knowing the object of mindfulness and clearly comprehending its nature.

Therefore, in my opinion, mindfulness & meditation are not the same. Mindfulness is one factor contributing to meditation. Other factors contributing to meditation are wisdom & effort. When mindfulness, wisdom, effort & concentration combine, the result is 'meditation'.
I agree that Mindfulness is one factor contributing to meditation, but remember I'm talking about "Mindfulness Practice", not just Right Mindfulness in isolation. When I practice both meditation and mindfulness practice, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness and Right Concentration all work together.
"Whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon, that will become the inclination of the mind"

User avatar
bodom
Posts: 5880
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:18 pm
Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by bodom » Tue Aug 29, 2017 1:23 pm

one_awakening wrote:
DooDoot wrote: Mindfulness is said to mean to 'remember' or 'recollect
I don't agree. Mindfulness means to keep something in mind
And keeping something in mind entails remembering to do so.
“And what is the faculty of sati? There is the case where a monk, a disciple of the noble ones, is mindful, highly meticulous, remembering & able to call to mind even things that were done & said long ago. He remains focused on the body in & of itself — ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world. He remains focused on feelings in & of themselves... the mind in & of itself... mental qualities in & of themselves — ardent, alert, & mindful — putting aside greed & distress with reference to the world.”

— SN 48.10
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

:namaste:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


"Dont send the mind outside. Watch the mind right at the mind."

- Ajahn Dune Atulo

JohnK
Posts: 478
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:06 pm
Location: Tetons, Wyoming, USA

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by JohnK » Tue Aug 29, 2017 2:19 pm

one_awakening wrote:I've been meditating and performing vipassana meditation for several years and come to realise there's no real difference between meditation and mindfulness...What do people think?
Hi there. I was going to post this maybe a week ago, but didn't -- about it being perhaps helpful to clarify terms.
It might be helpful to the discussion if you described very carefully what you mean by the two words in your subject line. You say that they are seeming to be the same to you (which of course is noteworthy if they are at first glance different), but you do not clearly show the difference you are talking about by clearly defining your terms. You do clarify mindfulness by saying you mean "mindfulness practice," (vs. the path factor) but even that phrase could use some clarification regarding just what you mean by it.
I don't mean this as a criticism; I'm just seeing what seems to be some confusion in the discussion as folks may not even be talking about the same things.
Hoping to be helpful.
"Why is it, Master Kaccana, that ascetics fight with ascetics?"
"It is, brahmin, because of attachment to views, adherence to views, fixation on views, addiction to views, obsession with views, holding firmly to views that ascetics fight with ascetics" (AN 2: iv, 6, abridged).
Kindly eyes, not verbal daggers.

DooDoot
Posts: 580
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by DooDoot » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:09 am

one_awakening wrote:Here The Buddha mentions clear comprehending. To me, that means knowing the object of mindfulness and clearly comprehending its nature.
Thank you. The Buddha did not speak English & didn't use the words 'clear comprehending' as you are interpreting it to mean. The word is 'sampajanna', which is generally used as a compound with 'sati', i.e., 'sati-sampajanna'. You might what to research extensively what the term 'sampajanna' means (for which there are many viewpoints).

Also, there is no such thing as 'objects of mindfulness', as you are describing. A true object of mindfulness/recollection is something that can be readily & immediately brought to mind, such as some type of wisdom. But mind objects, such as rapture, jhana or Nibbana, cannot be readily & immediately brought to mind. Or even breathing. Sometimes, people struggle to clearly discern the breathing. This is why these things are not objects of mindfulness. What they really are are objects of consciousness, which, when they arise in meditation practise, the mind is mindful towards, i.e., remembers to not relate to those objects in the wrong or unskilful way.

What you appear to be describing is consciousness rather than mindfulness, as follows:
Dependent on mind & mind-objects, mind-consciousness arises. The meeting of the three is contact.
Mindfulness does not mean 'knowing' ('pajānāti') or 'observing/seeing' ('anupassi'). It means 'recollecting' or 'remembering' ('sati'). You asked for some ideas or opinions about words. I offer this to you. With metta.

User avatar
one_awakening
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Aug 20, 2017 6:04 am

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by one_awakening » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:35 am

DooDoot wrote: The Buddha did not speak English & didn't use the words 'clear comprehending' as you are interpreting it to mean.
I'm only going by the translation which says "clear comprehending"
DooDoot wrote: Also, there is no such thing as 'objects of mindfulness', as you are describing.

This is why these things are not objects of mindfulness. What they really are are objects of consciousness, which, when they arise in meditation practise, the mind is mindful towards, i.e., remembers to not relate to those objects in the wrong or unskilful way.
I agree with you here, but you can also say; your consciousness becomes aware of an object and you become mindful of that object therefore it's a mindfulness object.
DooDoot wrote: Mindfulness does not mean 'knowing' ('pajānāti') or 'observing/seeing' ('anupassi'). It means 'recollecting' or 'remembering' ('sati'). You asked for some ideas or opinions about words. I offer this to you. With metta.
I agree, but again I'm referring to "Mindfulness Practice"
"Whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon, that will become the inclination of the mind"

User avatar
one_awakening
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Aug 20, 2017 6:04 am

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by one_awakening » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:42 am

JohnK wrote:It might be helpful to the discussion if you described very carefully what you mean by the two words in your subject line.
I guess when I refer to “Mindfulness Practice” for me it involves being aware of the object of mindfulness and also knowing the object of mindfulness in order to better understand our minds and our experience.

So for example, if I want to pick up a coffee cup, I’m aware of my intention to pick up the cup. I’m aware my arm stretching and making contact with the cup. I’m aware of feelings that arise such as the touch of my hand on the cup and/or any internal feelings such as desire, aversion etc. and if the feelings are pleasant, unpleasant or neutral.

Wisdom may arise at any moment for example; the bodily movement to pick up the coffee cup is preceded by the intention to pick up the cup. So bodily movements follow mental processes. Or that experience is simply the process of cause (intention to pick up cup) and effect (pick up cup).

So the above mindfulness practice involves an initial effort to be mindful. As the mindfulness progresses it leads to concentration and as the concentration becomes stronger, the mindfulness also becomes stronger. If I’m doing it well, then the mindfulness and concentration become strong and unified which then leads to wisdom.

I guess what I've described here is actually Vipassana Meditation. I think that the term "Mindfulness Practice" is being used these days to refer to a version of Vipassana Meditation that involves observing the present moment, and doesn't really go any further than that. While Vipassana Meditation involves observing the present moment to gain insight into reality with the ultimate goal of liberation.
"Whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon, that will become the inclination of the mind"

JohnK
Posts: 478
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:06 pm
Location: Tetons, Wyoming, USA

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by JohnK » Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:20 pm

So, in describing what you mean by mindfulness practice, you say:
one_awakening wrote:...for example, if I want to pick up a coffee cup, I’m aware of my intention to pick up the cup...

So, your example is "off the cushion." Is that perhaps what you are getting at in your distinction between the two practices, "meditation" and "mindfulness?" (In this context, I'm less interested in the correctness of terms -- others are taking that up -- than in trying to clarify what you are talking/asking about which seems to be very specifically about your practice/experience.)
"Why is it, Master Kaccana, that ascetics fight with ascetics?"
"It is, brahmin, because of attachment to views, adherence to views, fixation on views, addiction to views, obsession with views, holding firmly to views that ascetics fight with ascetics" (AN 2: iv, 6, abridged).
Kindly eyes, not verbal daggers.

User avatar
one_awakening
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Aug 20, 2017 6:04 am

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by one_awakening » Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:32 am

JohnK wrote: So, your example is "off the cushion." Is that perhaps what you are getting at in your distinction between the two practices, "meditation" and "mindfulness?"
Yes I thought about the "off the cushion" distinction between the two, but then I thought "What about walking meditation?"
JohnK wrote: (In this context, I'm less interested in the correctness of terms -- others are taking that up)
Yes, thank you. I'm happy to be educated, that's what the forum is about, but sometimes we can get a little side-tracked with different opinions
"Whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon, that will become the inclination of the mind"

Saengnapha
Posts: 339
Joined: Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:17 am

Re: Meditation and Mindfulness

Post by Saengnapha » Fri Sep 15, 2017 11:10 am

DooDoot wrote: Mindfulness does not mean 'knowing' ('pajānāti') or 'observing/seeing' ('anupassi'). It means 'recollecting' or 'remembering' ('sati'). You asked for some ideas or opinions about words. I offer this to you. With metta.
Analayo describes this as follows: This connotation of sati as memory appears also in its formal definition in the discourses, which relates sati to the ability of calling to mind what has been done or said long ago. A closer examination ofthis definition, however, reveals that sati is not really defined as
memory, but as that which facilitates and enables memory. What this definition of sati points to is that, if sati is present, memory will be able to function well. Understanding sati in this way facilitates relating it to the context of satipatthãna, where it is not concerned with recalling past events, but functions as awareness of the present moment. In the context of satipatthãna meditation, it is due to the presence of sati that one is able to remember what is otherwise only too easily forgotten: the present moment. Thus mindfulness being present (upatthitasati) can be understood to imply presence of mind, in so far as it is directly opposed to absent-mindedness (mutthassati); presence of mind in the sense that, endowed with sati, one is wide awake in regard to the present moment. Owing to such presence of mind, whatever one does or says will be clearly apprehended by the mind, and thus can be more easily remembered later on.


Mindfulness can be said to be knowing what you are doing each moment.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 20 guests