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I've noticed (and have been told) that formal sitting meditation is required and beneficial, as opposed to merely being mindful or compassionate in daily life. What aspect of formal sitting causes this?

Is it the relaxation? The recurrent location or time? The stillness? The consistency?

Thank you

  • Formal sitting will set up the process of mindful and compassionate daily life much better. It's not a either/or situation. Consistency has some value as well, since the goal (if you want to call it that, but it's a problematic term) is equanimity. – brother eric Apr 1 at 20:30
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Formal sitting practice is the most direct and simple way to gain real insights into the nature of reality and become enlightened.

There are two main types of meditation that are benifitial in this regard.

The first is training in concentration. You sit attempting to focus your attention on a single meditation object for as long as you can. Over time, your ability to focus will increase, and that will assist you in your second type of meditation.

The second is training in insight/wisdom. For this practice, you use your ability to concentrate to sit and observe a specific aspect of your experience in an attempt to see it for what it truly is.

Through gaining insights into the nature of reality and who you really are, you will gain benefits such as compassion, mindfulness, peace, happiness, disillusionment, and true knowledge. These ultimate understandings, once known clearly in your own experience, brings about the meaningful benefits of Buddhist teachings.

Enlightenment is possible for everyone this lifetime. I wish you nothing but love and hope you find what you are looking for. 🙏

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Stillness. Whereas the other elements are also beneficial, sitting is about reaching the pinnacle of stillness. The methodology is very simple, because it's mostly one of letting go. Caveat: it always seems dubious until it proves it's efficacy, and then doubt is removed.

  • A short and sweet answer. We may soon discover the benefits of sitting by trying it, but may not get far by just asking about it. It is a medicine, after all, and we don't learn much by just reading the label on the botle. – PeterJ Apr 1 at 13:36

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