Freawaru wrote:Hello Manapa,
Since talking with the people at DhammaStudyGroup I have thought a lot about this idea of "control". And I found out that I do not understand it. What is control? As you said, there is always control. Every thought, every emotion has a controlling effect on our breath (not to mention the rest of the body functions).
A bit farther down the satipatthana suttas states:I do not expect that anybody teaches not to stand up - a controled action, unlike breath which can be both controled consciously as well as unconsciously. Standing, sitting, going, lying down are all activities that require conscious control and the instruction is identical to the one on long and short breath.2. The Postures of the Body
And further, monks, a monk knows, when he is going, "I am going"; he knows, when he is standing, "I am standing"; he knows, when he is sitting, "I am sitting";...
Try practicing standing meditatin you may find out what is in control
But when doing the kind of meditation I described above I observed something else. At first I had to focus on controlling my breath - to make it long. I focused on controling my breath, I focused on counting the seconds and focused on linking both. But after a while this became a pattern that didn't require focus - or rather: no effort. Like when we learn to drive the car we need to focus on stirring and remember to look into the mirrors and the traffic and all that, but after some practice it comes so effortless we barely are aware that we have driven from home to work: a pattern, a program has been established in our mind that does not require control any more. So it was during that sitting. At first I needed to focus, I needed effort, but after a while, ten minutes or so, the control required for keeping the breath long was effortless, happening on it's own. That was why I was able to divert my attention to investigate that new, interesting, full-body awareness that blinked in and out. So was I controling the breath or not?
you tell me! was it you or the desire?
What if for those yogis like Buddhaghosa getting themselves into a long breath pattern came as natural as for us driving our own car to work? What if one just needed to tell them "breath long breaths" and all they asked "for how long?". They might have known how to control their breath for so long it came just as natural as standing up or sitting.
this idea is similar to a asthetic (can never remember how to spell that word) practices the buddha engaged in before he found the middle way.
I suspect that the point about "no control" is that one needs to have an established pattern, so one can detach from it and observe. Meaning: first step is to establish the required pattern, second step is to turn to "knowing".
or the first step is to watch the breath the scond is to control it as needed so as to be in tune with the body?
does it never arise?Again further down the satipatthana sutta states:But how can one know the consciousnes with lust when lust never arises? How can one investigate hate when hate never arises?III. The Contemplation of Consciousness
And how, monks, does a monk live contemplating consciousness in consciousness?
Herein, monks, a monk knows the consciousness with lust, as with lust; the consciousness without lust, as without lust; the consciousness with hate, as with hate; the consciousness without hate, as without hate; ...
are you sure?And again further down:How can one know enlightenment-factor of mindfulness is present when it never is present? How can one know there is a long breath if there never is a long breath?4. The Seven Factors of Enlightenment
And further, monks, a monk lives contemplating mental objects in the mental objects of the seven factors of enlightenment.
How, monks, does a monk live contemplating mental objects in the mental objects of the seven factors of enlightenment?
Herein, monks, when the enlightenment-factor of mindfulness is present, the monk knows, "The enlightenment-factor of mindfulness is in me," or when the enlightenment-factor of mindfulness is absent, he knows, "The enlightenment-factor of mindfulness is not in me";...