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Dear Venerable and friends,

Instead of anapanasati, some of us like to meditate on a subject; like contemplation. For instance; inevitability of death & uncertainty of the time of death and being a mortal... or contemplation on 5 body parts (asubha).

My question: When sitting shall we use a short sentence? Like: Death is inevitable. I am a mortal being. Like me all beings in samsara will face death when the time comes. Hence, we must transform our minds in accordance with the Dhamma.

Is there any short comprising of 2 words/phrase that can be recited while inhaling & exhaling like mantra chanting (Bud- dho) in order to strengthen our contemplation.

How to establish a solid foundation and make progress while doing discursive meditation? Thank you all, best wishes.

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My question: When sitting shall we use a short sentence? Like: Death is inevitable. I am a mortal being. Like me all beings in samsara will face death when the time comes. Hence, we must transform our minds in accordance with the Dhamma.

Yes.Short sentences like this helps the mind to focus on a theme/truth.It helps the mind penetrate its meaning.

Is there any short comprising of 2 words/phrase that can be recited while inhaling & exhaling like mantra chanting (Bud- dho) in order to strengthen our contemplation.

Now unless your contemplating on the breath,this is where it gets complicated.You are trying to understand a certain truth.For example,"Death is inevitable".But a 2 syllable word.One for the inbreath and the other for the outbreath.May narrow your concentration to a point where it hinders your ability to investigate/contemplate (especially if your object of meditation is not the breath).Investigation is whats needed in Discursive Meditation.

Mantra chanting is good to do before you start your discursive meditation or investigation as a means of stabilizing or anchoring the mind.But i don't see it as a way to strengthen contemplation.In fact i think it hinders it.By splitting the object of meditation in three.1.The Breath.2.The Mantra.3.The Meaning of the Mantra (Death is inevitable).

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For myself the expression "Don't know" covers so many facets of mindfulness development, it is surprising more people are not aware of it. The Zen practice of the "Don't know mind" that 'empties' the mind, is not what is intended here; but of a meaningful enquiry so as to keep focused on just about any object of contemplation. One of the basics of Dhamma is Anattaa, hence any object under investigation will respond to the genuine exclamation of "Don't know" simply because all objects lack any substance and thus ain't objects.

Unwholesome objects will become 'stressed' or rejected; whilst wholesome objects will gladden and develop, until such time as increasing subtlety renders such objects unwholesome so as to give way to states of ever greater subtlety and wholesomeness: etc, etc.

For some practitioners the best results might come when the so called 'heart' centre is focused on, whilst synchronising the breath. The space behind the sternum joint at the first visible rib pair: which is drifting off topic.

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