1
  1. How do I deal with food cravings or craving in general? According to the four efforts I should replace craving with the disadvantages. Can loving-kindness also work? I feel like concentrating on impermanence and on the disadvantages, in the midst of an emotion, works not as effective. I guess one needs to strengthen one's conviction in both?

  2. I read the Buddha saying about guarding the senses -- but I doubt that the Buddha meant not looking, not hearing (etc) at things. While it can be advantageous, I think perceiving them differently is much more important. Can someone answer what "sense-guarding" means, or "not grasping at the beautiful", and how do I do it?

2

I feel like concentrating on impermanence and on the disadvantages, in the midst of an emotion, works not as effective.

Yes, that's because what impermanence is not the one and only thing which need to be considered to uproot the cravings. No matter how hard you try can you get satisfied with any kind of cravings? It can be food. If you are fully satisfied or if you've reached ultimate satisfaction would you need to eat food again? No right. Our mind always looking for this satisfaction and it always get cheated by things like nice / delicious food etc. And then we keep running after that. It's true we feel happy when we eating that, but those doesn't full fill our mind's expectation of ultimate satisfaction. Why is that? That's because everything in this world is insatiable. That's the reality | truth of this world. Impermanence is just a one quality / attribute of that nature. Once you realise this, you should think twice before running after mirages. Because no matter how hard you run you won't be satisfied only thing you get is the tiredness and other occurrences while running. And then you should see danger of those kind of actions. Not knowing the gratification (assada), the danger (adinava) and how to escape from (nissarana) are the root causes for cravings. When you think about this and when you realise the uselessness of cravings it will start to get reduced.

I read the Buddha saying about guarding the senses -- but I doubt that the Buddha meant not looking, not hearing (etc) at things.

Again this links to the above. How you guard your senses is thinking about the uselessness of those by knowing the gratification (assada), the danger (adinava) and how to escape from (nissarana). This doesn't mean that not looking at things but controlling the attachment / craving / gratification (assada) towards the thing you look at and the action of looking by thinking of danger. Which will realise you the gratification (assada), the danger (adinava) and how to escape from (nissarana) the thing you looked at and the action of looking. And finally you start to escape from the part of attachment or the gratification of that. Because that's what drives you towards the danger.

If you think about the bait given to a fish. Is the food in the bait given pain to the fish? or the hook (used to catch the fish with the fishing rod) given the pain?

If you the answer is hook, then if you just place the hook without the food (bait) does the fish get caught or the fish get pain?

No right. Then if you think deeply you will understand that the food (bait) is given pain to the fish. Like wise gratification (assada) gives the danger (adinava) to us. We can't blame fish because it doesn't know that it's a trap. It's called Avidya (ignorance). For us it's the same. Poor us! we are covered with Avidya (ignorance) so we don't realise the truth, we don't realise it's a trap, and we get attached to things and keep running after gratification (assada) of those, thinking those will give us ultimate satisfaction. But it will never happen. Because the world is insatiable. Once you see this you will find a to escap (nissarana) from gratification (assada). Don't misunderstand this escape is not from the outer world things, but from the attachment / cravings.

Where does the ultimate happiness and satisfaction actually do exist, which is looking for by our minds? -> It's called Nivana, Nirvana or Enlightenment

With Metta..!

| improve this answer | |
0

Simply note your cravings as they arise. Note them arising and note them disappear. If you keep doing this, you will stop taking actions based on your cravings. That will lead to cravings arising less frequently. If you keep doing this as a habit, one day you will experience the end of craving.

| improve this answer | |
  • 1
    I think another factor is an attiudinal one: One should welcome the thoughts and curiously observe the phenomena (noting can help). So often one can get the impression that desire, ill will etc. is bad. But by labeling it bad one doesn't get rid of it. It actually gets even worse and if one lapses into these states one could become guilty of oneself. What pops up into our consciousness is largely based on causes and condition, but how we react is much more in control and trainable. Only after time do these automatic thoughts decrease or even diminish. – Val Feb 18 '18 at 18:23
  • 1
    However, I just notice that just noting doesn't go in line with right effort and its four exertions. So merely watching wouldn't be the teaching by the buddha. – Val Feb 18 '18 at 18:25
  • Noting is Samma Sati(right mindfulness). The effort you put to right mindfulness is the right effort indeed. You do not welcome thoughts. Thoughts arise and you simply notice them. – Sankha Kulathantille Feb 19 '18 at 2:27
  • What I meant by welcoming is that you do not resist them. That you see that all the causes and conditions are met for them to arise. If your react with aversion you are already in a bad position. Isn't that what apammada kind of implies within the context of thoughts and emotions? That one is vigilant and uses clear discernment and then to cut them off – Val Feb 19 '18 at 16:09
  • Resisting is also the right effort, but it's just a different technique. Doing Metta and then Vipassana instead of pure Vipassana. – Sankha Kulathantille Feb 19 '18 at 17:27
0

Feeling leads to craving:

enter image description here

Source: Introduction to Mahā,nidāna Sutta by Piya Tan

To guard the sense door know what feelings arise and then eventually see the empirical level that they arise and pass away at the level of Rupa Kalapa. The method is simply:

i. On seeing a form with the eye,

  • one investigates the form that is the basis for mental joy,
  • one investigates the form that is the basis of mental pain,
  • one investigates the form that is the basis of equanimity.

ii. On hearing a sound with the ear,

  • one investigates the sound that is the basis for mental joy,
  • one investigates the sound that is the basis of mental pain,
  • one investigates the sound that the basis of equanimity.

iii. On smelling a smell with the nose,

  • one investigates the smell that is the basis for mental joy,
  • one investigates the smell that is the basis of mental pain,
  • one investigates the smell that is the basis of equanimity.

iv. On tasting a taste with the tongue,

  • one investigates the taste that is the basis for mental joy,
  • one investigates the taste that is the basis of mental pain,
  • one investigates the taste that is the basis of equanimity.

v. On feeling a touch with the body,

  • one investigates the touch that is the basis for mental joy,
  • one investigates the touch that is the basis of mental pain,
  • one investigates the touch that is the basis of equanimity.

vi. On cognizing a mind-object with the mind,

  • one investigates the mind-object that the basis of mental joy,
  • one investigates the mind-object that is the basis of mental pain,
  • one investigates the mind-object that is the basis of equanimity.

Dhātu Vibhaṅga Sutta

To prevent your mental reaction to sensation becoming unwholesome you can try:

“Nothing is worth clinging to”

When this was said, the venerable Mahā Moggallāna said this to the Blessed One: “In what way, bhante, in brief, is a monk freed through the destruction of craving, that is, one who has reached total perfection, the total security from bondage, the total holy life, the total consummation, the highest amongst gods and humans?”

“Here, Moggallāna, the monk has learned that nothing is worth clinging to. And, Moggallāna, a monk has learned that nothing is worth clinging to, thus: he directly knows all things [he directly knows the nature of the all]. Having directly known the nature of all things, he fully understands all things.

Having fully understood all things, he knows whatever feelings there are, whether pleasant, painful or neither painful nor pleasant.

As regards to those feelings, [Section on Disillusionment and Revulsion (Nibbida) follows]

he dwells contemplating impermanence in them;

he dwells contemplating dispassion [fading away of lust] in them;

he dwells contemplating ending (of suffering) in them;

he dwells contemplating letting go (of defilements).

When he dwells contemplating impermanence in them, contemplating dispassion in them, contemplating ending in them, contemplating letting go, he does not cling to anything in the world. Not clinging, he is not agitated; being not agitated, he himself surely attains nirvana.

Pacalā Sutta

Another rendering of the same is as follows:

If he feels a pleasant feeling,

  • he understands that it is impermanent;
  • he understands that it is not to be clung to;
  • he understands that there is no delight in it.

If he feels a painful feeling,

  • he understands that it is impermanent;
  • he understands that it is not to be clung to;
  • he understands that there is no delight in it.

If he feels a neutral feeling,

  • he understands that it is impermanent;
  • he understands that it is not to be clung to;
  • he understands that there is no delight in it.

If he feels a pleasant feeling, he feels it in a detached manner.

If he feels a painful feeling, he feels it in a detached manner.

If he feels a neutral feeling, he feels it in a detached manner.

Dhātu Vibhaṅga Sutta

This technique is taught over 10 days at the following centres and many benefited with deep insights in the 1st course itself:

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.