How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

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Maarten
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How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by Maarten » Sat Jul 30, 2016 10:29 pm

How does one develop psychic powers such as reading the minds of others, and leaving ones body?
Are such powers common among meditators? Or do you have to be a monk for years before you can get them?

With metta,

Maarten

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fivebells
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by fivebells » Sat Jul 30, 2016 10:49 pm

They are extremely uncommon, to the point that I have never seen them. In theory they develop as a result of great skill in concentration. Of themselves, though, they are basically useless or even harmful to the goals of Buddhist practice. E.g., the Bahiya sutta obviously represents Bahiya as having psychic powers, but he was a bit of a dolt.

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Dhamma_Basti
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by Dhamma_Basti » Tue Aug 02, 2016 4:17 pm

Buddha himself stated that he completed the four ṛddhipādas, yet I he discouraged people from displaying these powers in the public. I assume that psychic powers in the context early buddhist meditation are like an unavoidable sideffect, something which happens along the way but should not be the aim of the meditation.
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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Tue Aug 02, 2016 4:52 pm

Look up the story of Ajahn Mun.

However, also read the Kevatta Sutta
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Mr Man
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by Mr Man » Tue Aug 02, 2016 4:55 pm

Step 1) Read your own mind.

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Nicolas
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by Nicolas » Tue Aug 02, 2016 5:03 pm

Mr Man wrote:Step 1) Read your own mind.
:goodpost:
Sacitta Sutta (AN 10.91) wrote:Even if a monk is not skilled in the ways of the minds of others, he should train himself: 'I will be skilled in reading my own mind.'

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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by SarathW » Tue Aug 02, 2016 9:02 pm

Mr Man wrote:Step 1) Read your own mind.
Yes, Satipatthana.
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_anicca_
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by _anicca_ » Wed Aug 03, 2016 1:01 am

Dhamma_Basti wrote: yet I he discouraged people from displaying these powers in the public.
Displaying psychic powers is a dukkata offence. These offences are not included in the Patimokkha, but they are similar in gravity to paccitiya offences: they require a confession, but not much more.
"A virtuous monk, Kotthita my friend, should attend in an appropriate way to the five clinging-aggregates as inconstant, stressful, a disease, a cancer, an arrow, painful, an affliction, alien, a dissolution, an emptiness, not-self."

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Wind_of_Change
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by Wind_of_Change » Wed Aug 03, 2016 2:13 am

Mr Man wrote:Step 1) Read your own mind.
:))))) :goodpost:
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khlawng
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by khlawng » Sun Aug 07, 2016 3:21 pm

I would like to present a different and personal perspective on reading anothers mind.
to be clear, this is not quite the same as reading another person's thoughts or intention.
instead this abilty can be as simple as letting one's mind be influence
to settle down quickly during group meditation with senior meditators to
the ability to reflect or mirror another person's mind to detect the quality of samadhi.
the former requires little skills as any beginner meditator can often experience this in a retreat environment.
the latter would require at least some form of jhana experience and insight training to achieve that.
one can very quickly pick out the fake meditators because their mimds have a tendancy to be heavy and always operating the sense bases.
please note the above are my personal view and I can offer no reference to any suttas to back this.

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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by binocular » Sun Aug 07, 2016 3:32 pm

Maarten wrote:How does one develop psychic powers such as reading the minds of others, and leaving ones body?
Are such powers common among meditators? Or do you have to be a monk for years before you can get them?
Why would one want to deliberately develop fancy psychic powers?
To impress others, to obtain some worldly gain?

Heaven help you if for all your efforts to develop those powers you get nothing but a response like this: https://aparajithamurali.files.wordpres ... onitis.gif
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

Maarten
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by Maarten » Mon Aug 15, 2016 11:14 pm

binocular wrote:
Maarten wrote:How does one develop psychic powers such as reading the minds of others, and leaving ones body?
Are such powers common among meditators? Or do you have to be a monk for years before you can get them?
Why would one want to deliberately develop fancy psychic powers?
To impress others, to obtain some worldly gain?

Heaven help you if for all your efforts to develop those powers you get nothing but a response like this: https://aparajithamurali.files.wordpres ... onitis.gif
Hehe don't worry I'm just curious about them. :D

I wouldn't mind learning some of them if they were easy to pick up on the way, just to play around with them.
I have not actually tried to develop any, my meditation is probably not good enough anyway.

With Metta,

Maarten

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The Thinker
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by The Thinker » Tue Aug 16, 2016 1:51 pm

At some point today you will feel a thirst, you may feel hungry, and tonight or at some point in the next 24 hours you will hopefully sleep well, Perhaps this mind is psychic after all. But what gains can there be from this power?
"Watch your heart, observe. Be the observer, be the knower, not the condition" Ajahn Sumedho volume5 - The Wheel Of Truth

spacenick
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Re: How to develop psychic powers? And how common are they?

Post by spacenick » Sat Aug 20, 2016 10:01 pm

My take on this:

it's gonna be extremely unlikely to find them in the midst of lay daily life, especially in this age of insanely high sensory impingement (think about how often we check our phones for those little notification bubbles)

However if one has an unbending intent to develop them, I don't see anything that prevents one from doing so. If you argue that then you argue the entire Canon. The Buddha clearly states that these things are achievable. There are also reports of such things in Castadena's books; without mentioning Thanissaro's reports of Ajahn Lee's incredible powers.

If you think that psychic powers cannot be achieved, then you betcha you'll never achieve them. Just like until recently we believed no one could run the 100m in less than 10 seconds. Morpheus to Neo: "You gotta free your mind"

However the level of commitment and supportive conditions that it would require are gonna be out of reach for 99.99999% of us. That doesn't mean 100% though! And I don't believe they are to be dismissed immediately. Sure they were not praised as an end in itself, but encountering strange phenomena can be helpful for some to break down the 'rational' perception of one's world (careful not to become mad though! some people have been sent to the ward for less than that!)

:anjali:

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