Manasikara in sweeping

On the cultivation of insight/wisdom
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mikenz66
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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by mikenz66 » Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:04 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Tilt,
tiltbillings wrote:Out of curiosity, why are you asking this?
Specific to the question.... avoiding self perception of a "sweeper" through seeing the characteristics of it.

More generally... seeing the volitional nature of manasikara, and again, its characteristics.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Fair enough. That's a standard approach, though I'd be cautious of "trying" too hard to "avoid self perception". My impression is that such insight arises from careful attention to the mental and physical phenomena.

Chanmyay Sayadaw
http://buddhanet.net/vmed_4.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Yesterday, I explained to you how a meditator can observe twelve parts of a step, including intention before every action as mentioned in the Commentary to the Pali text. But it depends on you how many of the actions you should note. You should watch some objects as comfortably as you feel. If you have to exert or endeavour your utmost to be aware of any number of objects uncomfortably, you should not do that. If you do that you feel tense on your neck or your back, and sometimes you feel a headache. Sometimes you feel dizzy because you have to strain too much to be aware of each part of the step. So it depends on you; you yourself know. Normally for a meditator it should be adequate to note four or five objects of a step comfortably without strains with your relaxation: intending, lifting, moving, dropping, or touching. If you are able to observe these four or five objects precisely and very attentively then you can attain a deep concentration on the movement of the foot.

To be aware of these four or five objects very precisely and attentively you have to slow down your stepping. Unless your step is slow you cannot catch each individual part of the step very well. It's indispensable for you to slow down your step so that you can note all these four or five objects very precisely and attentively. Now when you are able to note all these four objects very well, your concentration gradually becomes better and better. You can note intention very concentratedly. Then the lifting movement you can note with diligent mindfulness. Then the pushing movement and putting movement and touching sensation you can know very well without looking here and there. In this way when you practice walking meditation for about three or four days you can attain a deep concentration.
When I conducted a meditation retreat in England at the Manjusri Tibetan Monastery, the Manjusri Institute in northern England near the border of Scotland, one of the meditators had put much effort into his practise both sitting as well as walking, and awareness of the activities too. So after about four days meditation he came to me and asked a question. ''Venerable Sir, my meditation is getting worse and worse,' he said. 'Now what happen to your meditation?' I asked him. Then he said, 'When I am walking one day, Venerable Sir, then gradually I am not aware of myself. The foot itself had lifted, and it itself pushed forward, and then dropped down by itself. There's no I or no me, no self, no myself. Sometimes though I control my foot, the foot doesn't stay with the ground. It lifted by itself. Sometimes it pushed forward very long. I couldn't control it. Then sometimes it's getting down by itself. So my meditation is getting worse and worse. What should I do?' Then eventually he said, 'I think I have gone mad.' Such an experience was very amazing.

This is a benefit of walking meditation. First of all he said, 'I don't know myself. I'm not aware of myself. I don't know my body, my leg.' That means the realisation of the movement of the foot. The movement of the foot has destroyed the idea of an 'I' or a 'you', a 'self' or a 'soul', a 'person' or 'being'. Here what he was realising was the impersonal nature of our bodily process called Anatta. No soul, non-ego, non-self nature of our bodily phenomena.

When he said, 'The foot is automatically lifted up by itself. It's automatically pushed forward by itself', that means there's no person or no being, no self who lifted the foot, who pushed it forward, who dropped it down. It's the realisation of the impermanent nature of physical processes or physical phenomena: Anatta. Before he didn't realise the physical process of the rising-falling movement and the other parts of the body in sitting, he realised the processes of rising, lifting movement, pushing movement, the falling movement of the phenomena as it really is. So he has destroyed the false idea of an I or a you, a person or a being, a self or a soul - Anatta.

It was very interesting. Not only this yogi but also many yogis in Burma experienced it in this way. And sometimes before you experience this stage of insight knowledge you feel you are walking on waves of the sea. Or you are standing on a boat which was floating on the waves of the sea. Sometimes you may feel you are walking on a heap of cotton. Sometimes you feel you are walking in the air. That is also one of the insight knowledge which penetrates into the true nature of material process, material phenomena.
Mike

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by Viscid » Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:14 pm

Do Mahasi method meditators ever note that they're noting?
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by mikenz66 » Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:21 pm

Viscid wrote:Do Mahasi method meditators ever note that they're noting?
Noting is just a way of putting attention on phenomena. It's not an end in itself, and gets dropped when the phenomena come too rapidly. If you got lost in conceptualizing that noting (which is quite the opposite of what is intended) then that would be thinking. Which you could note as "thinking"... :tongue:

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by Viscid » Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:25 pm

mikenz66 wrote:
Viscid wrote:Do Mahasi method meditators ever note that they're noting?
Noting is just a way of putting attention on phenomena. It's not an end in itself, and gets dropped when the phenomena come too rapidly. If you got lost in conceptualizing that noting (which is quite the opposite of what is intended) then that would be thinking. Which you could note as "thinking"... :tongue:

Mike
Was just being intentionally obtuse, but your response was excellent and useful. Thanks!
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by retrofuturist » Sat Oct 16, 2010 12:07 am

Greetings Mike,

Thanks for sharing the above quotes.

Further to the explanation above about why this interests me, I think it's because when I falsely identify "myself", I associate it in terms of volition or will... and manisikara is a subtle aspect of will or volition.

Therefore, for me at least, the ti-lakkhana aspects of volition are arguably more worth penetrating than the ti-lakkhana aspects of the feeling or body aggregates.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by tiltbillings » Sat Oct 16, 2010 12:17 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mike,

Thanks for sharing the above quotes.

Further to the explanation above about why this interests me, I think it's because when I falsely identify "myself", I associate it in terms of volition or will.

Therefore, for me at least, the ti-lakkhana aspects of volition are arguably more worth penetrating than the ti-lakkhana aspects of the feeling or body aggregates.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Sure. Next time you are sitting and have an itch on your nose. You can watch your intention to scratch it, though you do not have to act on the intention and you can watch your intention not to act on scratching your nose, or you can scratch your nose, moving very slowly catching as much of the intentional/volitional aspects of the action as you can.

But one also needs to be careful as to not to concoct "intention"/"volition." Basically, it is a matter of attending to, very carefully, what arises, but this also presupposes some degree of cultivation of mindfulness and concentration.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by mikenz66 » Sat Oct 16, 2010 12:36 am

Thanks Tilt,

To loosely paraphrase Ajahn Chah:
"You can learn a lot from Ajahn Itch..."

:anjali:
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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by Ben » Sat Oct 16, 2010 12:37 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mike,

Thanks for sharing the above quotes.

Further to the explanation above about why this interests me, I think it's because when I falsely identify "myself", I associate it in terms of volition or will... and manisikara is a subtle aspect of will or volition.

Therefore, for me at least, the ti-lakkhana aspects of volition are arguably more worth penetrating than the ti-lakkhana aspects of the feeling or body aggregates.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Paul I've never had any problem with attending to volition with vedananupassana. Observing vedana is an excellent training ground which trains the mind in observing increasingly more subtle phenomena. Initially when one practices vedananupassana, one's attention is focused on the grosser forms of sensation, but through time and continuity of practice, one develops sensitivity - not only towards finer sensation, but also to other co-arising phenomena. As one's equanimity develops and matures, one increasingly observes the evanescing flora without identifying with it.
kind regards

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by Sanghamitta » Sat Oct 16, 2010 4:35 pm

Ben wrote:
retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mike,

Thanks for sharing the above quotes.

Further to the explanation above about why this interests me, I think it's because when I falsely identify "myself", I associate it in terms of volition or will... and manisikara is a subtle aspect of will or volition.

Therefore, for me at least, the ti-lakkhana aspects of volition are arguably more worth penetrating than the ti-lakkhana aspects of the feeling or body aggregates.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Paul I've never had any problem with attending to volition with vedananupassana. Observing vedana is an excellent training ground which trains the mind in observing increasingly more subtle phenomena. Initially when one practices vedananupassana, one's attention is focused on the grosser forms of sensation, but through time and continuity of practice, one develops sensitivity - not only towards finer sensation, but also to other co-arising phenomena. As one's equanimity develops and matures, one increasingly observes the evanescing flora without identifying with it.
kind regards

Ben
I think its worth noting that observing vedana can initially result in a hypersensitivity to same.
Many people find that sensations that are hitherto not registered consciously become conscious...which is actually a sign that things are proceeding as they should, but which can mean a period of being very aware of itching and other sensations which the conscious mind usually ignores in order to function. This passes.
It goes quicker with "noting"..
A book that deals in a very accessible and pragmatic way with working with vedana using Vipassana methods is " The Dynamic Way Of Meditation " by Dhiravamsa,
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by Ben » Sun Oct 17, 2010 2:30 am

Sanghamitta wrote:I think its worth noting that observing vedana can initially result in a hypersensitivity to same.
Many people find that sensations that are hitherto not registered consciously become conscious...which is actually a sign that things are proceeding as they should, but which can mean a period of being very aware of itching and other sensations which the conscious mind usually ignores in order to function. This passes.
Indeed. If the practice is twinned with equanimity training then the hypersensitivity is less subject to the usual irritation and anxiety that it habitually causes in most people. Eventually, sensation is just seen for what it is and it is no longer a source from which tanha and dosa originate.
Sanghamitta wrote:It goes quicker with "noting"..
Not having practiced noting, I take your word for it.
Sanghamitta wrote:A book that deals in a very accessible and pragmatic way with working with vedana using Vipassana methods is " The Dynamic Way Of Meditation " by Dhiravamsa,
Thanks for the recommendation, I am sure some of our members will find it of benefit.
kind regards

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com..

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by Sanghamitta » Sun Oct 17, 2010 7:54 am

Indeed Ben ( re Equanimity ) I was fortunate to learn the Brahma Viharas at the same time as I was learning Vipassana. In my mind they are inseparable.

:anjali:

V.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by rowyourboat » Tue Nov 02, 2010 8:30 pm

I think there are some methods of vipassana which make understanding anatta easier. Watching intentions arise in walking meditation (as well as other movements right through the day) is part of my lineage practice as well. Often the idea that I am doing something is strongly linked in with the sense of agency/self. It takes time and focused attention on intention to see its Nama rupa, cause effect interaction. That intention itself is causally arisen - hence doing away with the need for a do-er. Without seeing intention the idea of the self may well stay hidden in the unanswered question 'well who is doing the meditating' or 'who is shifting the awareness'. A clever practitioner may note this even if not intentionally focused upon, but that in my experience of teaching vipassana is rather rare.

Without getting past understanding non-self, there can be no bhanga nana (to link in with the other topic). Seeing anatta with any reliability/regularity involves seeing cause and effect very clearly (after seeing Nama rupa). Only some methods focus on cause and effect (of Nama rupa). Otherwise because of the inherant avijja, it is highly improbable these things would be understood without specific focus on these aspects of phenomena. Without seeingcause and effect as it is happening in all phenomena, there is no bhanga nana. This is paccaya parigghaha nana -the knowledge of causality, which is part of khankavitarana visuddhi (the purification of overcoming doubt). This visuddhi and this nana arise as effect of the previous nana and visuddhi- Nama rupa paticceda nana and Ditti visuddhi)

with metta

Matheesha

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by tiltbillings » Thu Nov 04, 2010 4:48 am

rowyourboat wrote:I think there are some methods of vipassana which make understanding anatta easier.
Could you be a little more expansive on this?
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by mikenz66 » Thu Nov 04, 2010 10:04 am

Hi Retro,
retrofuturist wrote: Thanks for sharing your experiences... should you ever attempt to observe the volition that operates concurrently with the sweeping, I'd be interested to hear those experiences too.
Well, I haven't tried sweeping (not much call for that around here...), but I did spend my walking time on retreat last weekend attempting to see volition during motion. I don't find it particularly easy. I can see the volition before the motion quite clearly, but during the motion itself it's difficult to find amongst the sensations, feelings, and so on... However, making the effort was worthwhile, as it heightened my attention.

And sometimes I did see some strange effects. I occasionally got the feeling of a volitional "force" that was "automatically" propelling my legs. Very odd. Walking but no walker... Only clear a couple of times in the whole weekend, though, this stuff takes patience...

Mike

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Re: Manasikara in sweeping

Post by Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 04, 2010 11:01 am

At the risk of addressing a non problem, or a problem which lies in my perception of some of the posts rather than in actuality..I think its worth pointing out that manasikara refers to directed attention...only. It does not suggest a focus on any given phenomenon to the exclusion of any other phenomenon. Manasikara is a means of loosening rather than accumulation.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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