13

There are multiple kinds of mental phenomena, not all of which can be classified as thoughts. First and the crudest kind, are visualizations, cravings, and replays. This is when we mentally leave here and now, and are experiencing what basically is a (short or long) daydream about the subject our mind is concerned or agitated about. The second kind are ...


12

My local Buddhist temple's resident teacher Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo has this beautiful metaphor of the "poop soup", highly relevant to yours (and the rest of ours) situation. In this metaphor we accumulate all kinds of neuroses ("poop") in the bowl of our psyche, until after many years it becomes veritable poop soup. Then, as we get ...


8

I don't think you are alone in this. Susan Blakemore in her excellent book Zen and the Art of Consciousness describes almost this exact situation. She paid attention in her everyday life just as you have done and found it very illuminating. However after two weeks of this she reach a point when she couldn't cross the road. She was paralysed as you were. She ...


7

Mindfulness or living in the present moment is not the same as not having goals or responsibilities. Instead it is about doing everything you do with full attention and without judgement. For example, an active and not very mindful person would drive a car, look at his watch to see what time it is, and nervously think about everything he still has to do ...


6

Satipatthana is the name of the actual practice, and Vipassana is the name of the quality of clearly seeing reality which Satipatthana produces.


6

The USA's NIH has an NCCAM page for meditation with links to up-to-date research on the benefits of meditation: http://nccam.nih.gov/health/meditation Asking for scientific proof is a bit misguided, I think, and in the case of meditation it's difficult to obtain even conclusive evidence. Many of the studies are suggestive at best, but the topics studied ...


6

Mindfulness is a way to develop concentration. This would stop the mind from wandering, thinking and developing stories about the objects chosen for the focus of meditation. Using mindfulness of breathing as a specific example: Focus attention on the breath. Eventually the mind will start to wander; at this point the mind can start to create a myriad of ...


6

In the Theravada tradition, we learn Yoniso Manasikhara. It means paying wise attention. And the knowledge or vision gained by paying wise attention is called the Yathā Bhūta ñāna Dassana or the vision of manifestations in their real form.


6

There are many kinds of meditation, and as many ways of explaining them as there are people. After years of study and practice, here is a meditation I recommend. I call this "the coming to one's senses meditation" :) Sit any way you want, as long as it's not too uncomfortable nor too comfortable as to put you to sleep. You can change your posture any way ...


6

Yes, practicing mindfulness can be a bad idea. When one practices mindfulness, he opens his eyes and comes to see more and more things that were previously unnoticed. That is the reason why beginners tend to think "When I sit on a cushion, there's a fireworks of thoughts, images, etc. coming to my mind. It seems like an endless waterfall of thoughts, etc.". ...


6

If you stop listening to songs, eventualy the odds of fragments of song poping in the mind would shrink, but is that realy what you are looking for ? A better way to approach this would be to let go of the aversion you feel toward having songs beeing replayed in your mind. When it occurs, do as you do with any other distraction or thought. Watch is appear ...


6

A couple of days is not enough time for your 10 minute meditation to have resulted in any change in your mood, feelings, or anything else. Were those panic attacks accompanied by difficulty breathing? If so, that and your loss of taste are big indicators of a COVID-19 infection. The other symptoms less so, but not unrelated to viral infections in general. ...


5

I am a neuroscience researcher studying meditation and mindfulness, and also a longtime practitioner of Tibetan Buddhism. Experience suggests to me that it's hard enough for any scientist to remain unbiased about her/his own work, and that can only be more challenging for a researcher studying something that he has already received enormous personal ...


5

The Mindfulness practice that is taught in a secular fashion in the West is based on the Buddhist Satipaṭṭāna-vipassanā practices, but it is a bit different. For one, in Buddhism, vipassnā is meant to be practiced within a certain framework of Buddhist thought and forms only a small part of the overall practice. Second, the "nonjudgemental awareness" you ...


5

Absolutely... this is an important topic for new monks and intensive meditators alike. As the Buddha himself said in the Sabbasava Sutta: “What taints, bhikkhus, should be abandoned by enduring? Here a bhikkhu, reflecting wisely, bears cold and heat, hunger and thirst, and contact with gadflies, mosquitoes, wind, the sun, and creeping things; he endures ill-...


5

From a traditional Buddhist perspective, the purpose of mindfulness is threefold: At a superficial level, the level of mere beginner or layperson, we pay attention to what we do and how we do it, evaluating it against the basic Buddhist guidelines, in order to overcome our basic unwholesome habits. On a deeper level, the level of dedicated practitioner, ...


5

This is more like a general comment than an on-point answer... You know why you're having this problem? Because visualization is a kind of fabrication. You're creating the experience, assembling it from the elements (signs) available in your memory. As you fabricate the seen you're trying to fabricate the seer and are struggling at that. Which is kind of ...


4

Being aware of ones surroundings during meditation is a passive behaviour, not an active one. My monk friend has instructed me to do so not by trying, as you stated. The world that surrounds us is fresh and being in the moment brings us back to a natural state of mindfulness. Again I stress that this is passive. He said to me: Anything that pops into ...


4

First of all I think it is important to remember that in the Mahasi Sayadaw system of meditation, you don't necessarily have to note distractions. When distractions arise you have a choice between staying with the primary object (e.g. the movement of the abdomen) or you can take up the distraction itself as an object. Both of these are equally valid. If the ...


4

Vipassana itself is True Awareness, clear-seeing presence in the moment absent of wandering thoughts. There is no Awakening without some success in Vipassana practice. Continued Vipassana practice aka True Awareness, results in Complete Enlightenment. Buddhism is really that simple and that's why the Buddha said "Mindfulness is liberation"! Satipatthana is ...


4

Like Sankha said "it depends on what kind of meditation your doing"? If your doing insight meditation you can meditate on the physical sensation of hunger. However,if your doing concentration practice it is not useful to use the physical sensation of hunger. Why? Because physical sensations keep changing.In concentration practice you need a relatively ...


4

Recollection of the memory is not attending to the present but attending to sanna (past perception that has been stored). The best the recollection of the memory can do is inform one of the path that one has travelled and probably one can help other people along the same path. The continued perception of arising and passing away of dhammas will deepen the ...


4

As you suggest by writing that your work involves ‘going’ into the future and past, the reality of our experience is that past and future exist only in thought (which includes memories, imagination and so on). This is the key to approaching your experience with mindfulness. In any given moment it is possible to recognise, from a place of awareness, that ...


4

I recalled a dharma talk by Ajahn Thanissaro Bhikku on Youtube. In it he compared mindfulness and meditation to a skill. And like anything else in life you need to practice to become good at that skill. At the beginning your mind is full of its habitual mess of cravings, frustrations, anger, hate, distractions, torpor, conceit, because you never experience ...


4

I think you did a really good job of breaking down your doubts into individual points. 1) Everywhere I keep reading stuff of the kind "Observe your thoughts without judgment". What does that really translate into in practice? How do you observe without judging? I mean, if you get sad thoughts, you get sad too. Thats why they are called sad thoughts. ...


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