Quick question re Mahasi Method

On the cultivation of insight/wisdom
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Myotai
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Quick question re Mahasi Method

Post by Myotai » Tue Mar 27, 2018 1:42 pm

....when noting say a noise (birds tweeting outside for instance) at what point do we returning to the abdomen and leave the sound. Its tricky as some sounds don’t wane…they’re sort of ‘there’ – so how do we not notice them anymore and return? <terrible grammar>!

JohnK
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Re: Quick question re Mahasi Method

Post by JohnK » Tue Mar 27, 2018 4:23 pm

Myotai wrote:
Tue Mar 27, 2018 1:42 pm
....when noting say a noise (birds tweeting outside for instance) at what point do we returning to the abdomen and leave the sound. Its tricky as some sounds don’t wane…they’re sort of ‘there’ – so how do we not notice them anymore and return? <terrible grammar>!
I'm no Mahasi expert, but I have heard teachers refer to the foreground and background of attention; so, for example, the sound that does not wane could return to the background as your attention to the abdomen returns to the foreground. I think the foreground and background could do some rapid flipping back and forth until attention potentially settles down. Maybe that is helpful.
Maybe Bhikkhu Pesala will post.
"...the practice is essentially a practice, and not a theory to be idly discussed...right view leaves unanswered many questions about the cosmos and the self, and directs your attention to what needs to be done to escape from the ravages of suffering." Thanissaro Bhikkhu, On The Path.

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Myotai
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Re: Quick question re Mahasi Method

Post by Myotai » Mon Apr 02, 2018 5:51 am

Thanks....I'll read a little further :)

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Goofaholix
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Re: Quick question re Mahasi Method

Post by Goofaholix » Mon Apr 02, 2018 9:16 am

Myotai wrote:
Tue Mar 27, 2018 1:42 pm
....when noting say a noise (birds tweeting outside for instance) at what point do we returning to the abdomen and leave the sound. Its tricky as some sounds don’t wane…they’re sort of ‘there’ – so how do we not notice them anymore and return? <terrible grammar>!
An important distinction is that you never note noise, you note hearing. Sound happens inside the mind when the eardrums convert vibration to sound and you need to be noting the internal sense contact not what birds are doing externally.

Bearing that in mind how quickly you will move back to the primary object will depend on whether your practice is currently to build an momentum of concetration, or whether you are observing all mental sense contact as it arises and passes away. From my experience Mahasi teachers will favour one or the other depending on where the student is at, whatever you do if you get lost then go back to the primary object.
“Peace is within oneself to be found in the same place as agitation and suffering. It is not found in a forest or on a hilltop, nor is it given by a teacher. Where you experience suffering, you can also find freedom from suffering. Trying to run away from suffering is actually to run toward it.” ― Ajahn Chah

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rightviewftw
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Re: Quick question re Mahasi Method

Post by rightviewftw » Mon Apr 02, 2018 10:14 am

How i used to do it is noticing arising of consciousness at different sense doors and paying attention to that inconstancy of ear consciousness, when i notice that happening i dropped such sounds like birds etc. Happens by itself.

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mikenz66
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Re: Quick question re Mahasi Method

Post by mikenz66 » Mon Apr 02, 2018 10:52 am

Goofaholix wrote:
Mon Apr 02, 2018 9:16 am
Myotai wrote:
Tue Mar 27, 2018 1:42 pm
....when noting say a noise (birds tweeting outside for instance) at what point do we returning to the abdomen and leave the sound. Its tricky as some sounds don’t wane…they’re sort of ‘there’ – so how do we not notice them anymore and return? <terrible grammar>!
An important distinction is that you never note noise, you note hearing. Sound happens inside the mind when the eardrums convert vibration to sound and you need to be noting the internal sense contact not what birds are doing externally.
Yes, the the idea is to be noting the most basic experience, in this case hearing. However, if you are not quick enough, you may well find that the mind starts creating a story: "Is that a duck? I wonder what colour it is? Duck stew would be a nice change from the boring vegetarian food on this retreat..." In that case, you could note "thinking", "proliferating", "imagining". It's valuable insight into how the mind takes a basic stimulus and starts to make up stuff...
Ear consciousness arises dependent on the ear and sounds. The meeting of the three is contact. Contact is a condition for feeling. What you feel, you perceive. What you perceive, you think about. What you think about, you proliferate. ...

https://suttacentral.net/mn18/en/sujato#sc10
:heart:
Mike

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