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How can I be completely aware in each and every moment, even working, walking, or talking? Is "continuous breath awareness" is an answer?

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continuous breath awareness is good but there is a catch. Imagine yourself running to catch a bus or running into the elevator or maybe any other sudden choice or a task that you can think of, then it becomes a hard task to focus on Breath. And it is very easy to lose focus on breath.

This is why Lord Buddha had certain guidelines for people who wanted to practice the "Breathing Meditation". Lord Buddha asked the practitioner to sit down calmly in a position that is comforting and start to focus on breath. I know the description is a bit longer than that but the point is Lord Buddha never gave such physical information to practice any other meditation. Because the mindfulness that comes from the continuous breath awareness can be a bit fragile there are much strong and powerful substitutes to replace it.


As you know there are two paths to a practitioner to reach goals in meditation.

One is called "Samatha" and other one is "Vipassana". Continuous breath awareness belongs to "Samatha" as it focus on calmness. Samatha Meditation develops a certain set of mind where dialog from mind start to cease when the practitioner goes deeper into the meditation.

Vipassana on the other hand is more active and it depends on the dialog from the mind (Vithakka Vichara). The thing with this sort of meditation is that there is no good position or a place or a time to practice. You can do it anytime,anywhere and in any position.


So the solution is.....

If you need to be Mindful at all times the best option is to go with Vipassana. And there is no better way to be Mindful as "Vipassana" is a "Win Win" situation to the practitioner.

Let me tell you why, If you start doing Vipassana and practice it well it will automatically fix your focus and you will feel yourself getting better at almost anything you do, And if you are to die you will dies with proper Mindfulness.

And as lord Buddha once said

The greatest good karma that a living being can do is to focus on "Anithya,Dhukka,Anatman".


Here are some Audio links to practice - Vipassana Mindfulness

Impermanent Meditation 1.MP3

Impermanent Meditation 2.MP3

Meditation of Posturest full Awareness.mp3

Meditation of Foulness.mp3

Meditation on Nine Cemetery Contemplations.mp3

Meditation on Elements.mp3

  • @Ajay , U R welcome. : -) – Theravada Jan 5 '16 at 22:38
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    Enlightented person nature is awarness.. i am right.. he is by default touch with the present moment.. he is absorbed in the moment.. isn't it?? – Jyo Soudagar - Ajay Jan 6 '16 at 11:38
  • @JyoSoudagar-Ajay He is aware and mindful but at the same time he is not dominated by it.Here You need to understand a simple concept and that is, One should me mindful but it should not be a forced one. You should reach a point in which mindfulness is automatic and natural. Even the mindfulness is supposed to be governed by awareness. Because a lot of people who practice Meditation soon run in to Ego problems and after that they are not ready to hear anyone's words. They only talk about what they have felt and pay no respect to the teaching. Remember it is essential to follow the path given.. – Theravada Jan 6 '16 at 15:10
  • Because if you take your own opinion as the truth and start to grow on that you will be lost. So be careful my friend. I wish you well. May Triple Gems Bless you! @JyoSoudagar-Ajay – Theravada Jan 6 '16 at 15:12
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You can still be aware of the breath. In case of working it is more easy to see the expansion and contraction nature / sensation of breathing process. In which case it might be an idea to look at your chest or abdomen for rising and falling sensation.

When you walk, talk or do anything else you need mindfulness to do the task right. In Buddhism this awareness is not too tied to being aware of what you do. What needs to be done is to be aware of the arising and passing of sensation (phenomena what is felt) with equanimity. In the case of breath any sensation pertaining to the breath like expansion contraction or touch at the upper lip or nose or length will be sufficient.

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Why seeking of "being aware constant"? Nobody can gain any insight and vision by just being aware and no one, teaching for release, suggest such. So here some Food for Awakening - The Role of Appropriate Attention

(Note: not given for trade, exchange, entertainment and stacks but as a tiny door out of that wheel)

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Think of your mind like some bits of leaves in water. When life is going by, these leaves get agitated, the water shakes and you start fixating on one leaf or another. Not being mindful is being agitated, looking at different thing to different thing, being afraid or worrying or being attached with so many thoughts happening you lose track of the beauty around you. Being mindful is saying oh look at that pretty leaf, and you are paying attention to it very carefully as it floats around. Mindfulness takes practice, and longer and longer you can hold attention to the leaf. There is nothing wrong about this.

But being mindful like this for extended periods is hard, because the water is always agitating, moving the leaves around. The leaves are external, they don't represent you in entirety, there is more, but you don't perceive the water because you are usually fixated on the leaves. To perceive the water is much more difficult, unless you stop the herbs from moving around. So how to calm the water? Meditate. That is why we close our eyes when we meditate, and we go to a quiet and calm place to do it. To allow the water to calm. Straight posture, eyes steadily gazed between the eyebrows. This posture allows awareness to be cultivated, and the mind to calm down and steady. Then the water calms, the leaves fall down to the bottom, and your awareness increases of the inner state. You perceive the water as it is. And you see the leaves are there, but you are not involved with them. When you practice this, it stays, and you go to the outside world and the water does not get so agitated. You can look at each leaf individually and it is much easier to be mindful. They go hand in hand and nature one another. When the water is still, you are 100 percent mindful.

Most of spirituality, no matter what religion, will be cultivating awareness to some degree. Christians do it through their emphasis on love, which is the true nature of things. Hindus tend to do it through rituals that engage the senses and focus them on a higher power. Buddhists and Hindus both do that actually, and they both meditate. Islamic people do it through regular prayer. You have to find the path that helps you do it the best. Even different Buddhist schools are very different in practice, so you find the one that cultivates the best in you. There is not only one way.

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I would like to start with Buddhas discourse to Bahiya who didn't know anything about Buddhism but met Buddha while he was pegging & wanted Buddha to tell him about the teachings urgently and Buddha impressed by his urgency told it to him in a nutshell.

From Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Awakening

In the seen there is only the seen in the heard,there is only the heard in the sensed [smell,taste,and touch],there is only the sensed,in the cognized,there is only the cognized..This Bahiya is how you should train yourself.When Bahiya there is for you ,in the seen only the seen,in the heard only the heard,in the sensed only the sensed,in the cognized only the cognized,then Bahyia, there is no 'you' in connection with all that,when Bahyia,there is no you in connection with all that, there is no you there.When Bahyia there is no you there,then Bahyia,you are neither here nor there nor in between the two.This,just this,is the end of suffering.

You see what was truly amazing about Buddha,was his realization that there is nothing...absolutely ,but the quality of this moment...and that it is the end of suffering.His whole life's work was to help people see this.

Have you ever wondered what happens when you first see a child ?.First you are in the moment,for you there is only the light smile,only the fresh eyes,the purity the sincerity and a beautiful nonchalance. Second The child himself is in the moment and because of that he has raised your awareness and you became in the moment.Later people teach him to think about the future and regret the past because they are afraid to be like that child,it requires a kind of vulnerability.

Thus recognizing this should be effortless,you don't force your mind to do it ,like you don't force your stomach to digest food, it has to be convinced by it.You have to be free not only from the sociocultural shackles but your own,including the need to be aware,only then can real connection with life happen.

So in your next meditation session don't try to relax ,don't try to let go,don't try to connect or be positive ,just don't do anything in particular and just see whatever is there ,listen to life to existence,and see where it leads you.

You have a great luck.

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Samadhi needs to be stronger for that to happen. If you really want to be lucid, clearly aware of every moment, you have to be fully committed and practicing Samadhi 24/7. Samadhi is undistractible lucidity, the ability to focus on a chosen field of awareness, without getting sidetracked by distraction. You think the thoughts you want to think, and you don't think the thoughts you don't want to think, whether at work, in quiet sitting meditation, etc. If your samadhi develops well, with committed unrelenting practice 24/7, then you'll gradually become lucid every moment.

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Short answer: You cannot.

Longer answer:

You really, really can't. You can't even really see how much you are unconscious in the present, and you and I are considerably more unconscious that we'd care to be aware of. Awareness of unawareness is itself awareness.

The student asked, "What should be done about temporary lapses in presence?"

T'ou-tzu said, "Who informs you about them?"

Solution #1:

Have you ever heard of Alex Honnold? Look him up on Google Images. He climbs mountains without harnesses. You want to be present every moment? Try that.

(Don't really try that)

"Be like someone who sees a ferocious tiger, totally engrossed in getting away and escaping with his life" - from Pocket Zen Reader by Thomas Cleary

The tendency is to relate to awareness as a place one resides, get's to, or who one is. Awareness is a fluid state that has no outer boundary, always anchored in the present, infinitely expansive. If you think you are aware, you are not aware.

Our awareness is content and context. The content of our awareness varies according to situation, mood, etc. The context of our awareness is the space wherein the content of our awareness lives. The larger and more open the context of our awareness, the richer and more varied is our experience, the greater our intelligence and ability to interact with that which shows up in our field of consciousness.

The context of your awareness expands and contracts, and within this context lives what you experience as your self.

Edit: To avoid misinterpretation; this isn't to suggest that one shouldn't be mindful at all times. But let's be clear: You can't do that. No one in this forum can. That isn't to say you shouldn't be mindful at all times; but you can't and you won't. But you still should. There is no answer that will suitably provide you with what you need in order to be mindful at all times. If you look at it as a place to get; let me remove all suspense: YOU WILL NEVER GET THERE; however, it is always possible to come from there. I recommend you do that.

  • Saying you can't is wrong. Actually Lord Buddha advised Buddhists to be Mindful all the time. If you do not know learn about "Samma sathi". – Theravada Jan 5 '16 at 22:41
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    @Theravada Lord Buddha advised Buddhist to be Mindful all the time. - that is not what I said you cannot do. Furthermore, it is not How can I be completely aware in each and every moment as the OP asked. Also, Being Mindful is not a place to get to, but a place to come from. I recommend being mindful at all times; but no one asked about that. – dgo Jan 5 '16 at 23:34
  • sorry @user1167442 I did not understand your answer.. – Jyo Soudagar - Ajay Jan 6 '16 at 8:31
  • @user1167442 I think meaning of Enlightenment mean Awakenings.. Person who aweak in all the sensons. then its nature to be aware in each and every moment.. Isn't is? – Jyo Soudagar - Ajay Jan 6 '16 at 11:32
  • I never answer questions with 'the answer'. I answer questions with an intention that my answer makes a difference. – dgo Jan 6 '16 at 13:38

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