I'm trying to being present with the help of body sensations.
When you are with a sense input you are always in the present moment. The way to be in the present moment or bring your attention to the present moment is to look at sensations. So you are doing the right thing here.
As I'm a beginner . I place my hand over my chest to feel that I'm live and presence. This is to ensure that I do not "think" that I'm being present but as a fact I'm .
This might involve thinking or perceptions which can be building verbal fabrications (chattering mind). If possible avoid this.
After few minutes , I do feel tightness of my heart , breathing rhythm. Then starts to feel energy flow (tingling) inside my legs and Torso .This is like being my attention expanded beyond the chest . When thoughts come I bring my attention back to chest .
In our body there a lot of sensations we are not aware of. In doing meditation you have to reach
Sabbakayapatisamvedi stage. This is where your attention spreads through out your body and you are aware of everything in your body. At a higher stage, bodily processors like breathing, arising and pass of all sensations. (
So keep spreading your attention and be mindful to the subtlest of:
- sensation in your body
- other bodily function like breathing
- and if possible (all this coming through contact with the sense doors thus tied to sensations)
- perspiration process
- excretion and urination (
Of course I feel a calm state but it is again a temporary state . The moment I release my attention to include whole environment again it keeps going to what ever it "wishes" to be with .
You have to reach where your bodily fabrications are calmed (
Passambhayam kayasamkharam). At this stage you feel calm and your breath becomes shorter.
As with all senses this arises and passes with rapid succession. You have to keep looking at even that calm feeling until you see this.
The calm sensations can be:
- pleasant, blissful - Patrice equanimity towards it and try to eliminate all fabrication of craving and clinging towards pleasant sensations.
- painful - Patrice equanimity towards it and try to eliminate all fabrication of aversion
- neutral - Patrice equanimity towards it and try to eliminate all fabrication of ignorance, i.e., even in this stage you see arising and passing, contacts creates sensation which you cling and crave, your perception creates a response to what you recognise, etc. As sensations are subtle you can try investigating these at a more subtler level.
Sensation are the mind conditioner. Buy using sensation to eliminate fabrication creation you calm your metal fabrication.
Also this sensation can be used to calm your metal chattering. Generally your mind wonders away then there is an overwhelming sensation coming from a sense door. If the sensation are generally pleasant or neutral your mind does not stray from your meditation object.
Could anyone help me with the next step that could help me to keep my attention where I wish it to be ?
To keep you attention where it needs to be you can do the following:
- realise your mind wonders away to from your anchor object
- experience the sensation this object creates
- due to thought proliferation and perceptional reaction this creates sensation in your body. Generally it dominates around the head. See if you can see these sensations in your body.
- at advance stages when you notice the sensations they just dispensary
- if not just stay with them for a few seconds and come back to your chosen object
- when doing this smiling also might help, look at the sensations off the libs touching also. Smiling releases the tension in the facial mussels.
By looking at the sensation, in advance stages your are effectively dissolving the fabrication they have created. Since fabrications giving grosser sensation are dissolves your are left with more pleasantness and this helps with concentration as mentioned before.
Also this can be used to eradicate mental defilements as mentioned above.
... to ensure I would not identify with unnecessary feelings , emotions etc.
What you have to see is:
- Feeling and sensation as just feeling and sensations
- Also scrutinise the feeling and sensation, dividing and dissecting until you come to more and more subtler sensations
The above goes for body, feeling / sensations, mind and Dhamma.
Ultimately you have to:
- Keep equanimity (do not cling or crave) to any sensation
- Be aware of the arising and passing of the sensation
Also pay attention to sensations as this is proxy to experiencing anything regarding your mind matter process and the other foundations of mindfulness. Even if you take the elements, we you one of our senses doors to sense it hence the primary characteristics and secondary characteristics based on a particular sense door like colour.
Based on: Mahā Sati’patthāna Sutta, Sal-āyatana Vibhanga Sutta, Pahāna Sutta, Saṅkhitta Dhamma Sutta