Dividing Attention vs One Pointed Concentration

The cultivation of calm or tranquility and the development of concentration
manas
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Re: Dividing Attention vs One Pointed Concentration

Post by manas » Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:58 am

Does the "whole body" in the sutta refer to the whole breath (body) from start to end or experiencing the breath in the whole (physical) body? As I try to read more on this, I just keep on coming across bhikkhus saying the one or the other or both. So I am thinking of trying the different approaches and see what works for me.


Replying from phone, so excuse the brevity...

I tried out both. Nothing wrong with some experimentation. But in retrospect, I think we already cover knowing the breath from beginning to end, with step 2.

Ultimately, I settled on kind of expanding awareness into my entire physical body, and observing this body sitting here, breathing in, and breathing out. The jhana similes' imagery, afaics, all point to jhana as a whole-body experience. Not limited to one little spot, but rather, permeating every bit of one's body. So if this is where we are headed, maybe that third step, by having us train the mind to be sensitive to the entire body while breathing, conveniently prepares us for what is to come later on.

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daverupa
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Re: Dividing Attention vs One Pointed Concentration

Post by daverupa » Wed Dec 26, 2012 12:19 pm

manas wrote:maybe that third step, by having us train the mind to be sensitive to the entire body while breathing, conveniently prepares us for what is to come later on.
I think this is quite by design, actually.
  • "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]

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Sambojjhanga
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Re: Dividing Attention vs One Pointed Concentration

Post by Sambojjhanga » Mon Jan 07, 2013 5:34 pm

I started out with attempting to follow my breathing at my nostrils, but then after listening to Ajahn Brahm, I see that "non-localized" attention to breathing is not only OK, it's PREFERRED.

That is what I now do and it has made a HUGE difference in how I perceive my meditation going.

I'm curious why meditation instructors even suggest the nostrils concentration? Why not just concnetrate on the breath, overall, to start with?

I'm asking this question to make sure I'm not doing something wrong, BTW!

Thanks in advance.

Metta

:anjali:
Sabba rasam dhammaraso jinati
The flavor of the dhamma exceeds all other flavors

pegembara
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Re: Dividing Attention vs One Pointed Concentration

Post by pegembara » Tue Jan 08, 2013 7:05 am

Anywhere the breath can be noted is fine whether it be at the nostrils, mouth, abdomen etc. It's just that the nostrils is a convenient spot to detect air movement. The purpose is to train the mind not to wander but tethering it to the breath. Anything that helps is good.
"Just as if a person, catching six animals of different ranges, of different habitats, were to bind them with a strong rope. Catching a snake, he would bind it with a strong rope. Catching a crocodile... a bird... a dog... a hyena... a monkey, he would bind it with a strong rope. Binding them all with a strong rope, he would tether them to a strong post or stake."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

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