In our previous post we saw how Gautama Buddha set up the simple structure and theory of Mindfulness. In this post on Mindfulness we will look at the Stage One practice procedure. We will start with an outline and then proceed in stages so that it might be possible to apply the discipline with or without the assistance of a teacher.
If you have not read the previous Part 1 of this blog, it would assist you to do that. We will not repeat its contents here, and it will be assumed the reader understands that this Part 2 as being built upon Part 1.
First, let us see the summary of the Four Stages of Practice, then we will look more deeply into Stage One.
The Buddha taught the techniques of the practice of “Establishment of Awareness” or as has been translated “Mindfulness”, in the following order of Stages:-
Stage 1. Awareness on the Physical Body
- Clear Understanding
- Nine Stages of the Corpse
Stage 2. Awareness on Feelings – like/dislike
Stage 3. Awareness on the Mind Content & Mind Space
Stage 4. Awareness on Modifications of the Mind
- The Hindrances
- The Aggregates
- The Sense Bases
- The Enlightenment Factors
- The Noble Truths
- The Noble Truth of Pain
- The Cause of Pain
- The Cessation of Pain
- The Path Leading to the Cessation of Pain
Our Motive is ‘ESTABLISHMENT of AWARENESS’ here and now
‘By seeing what is’,
we are able to ‘see what is for what it is’,
rather than ‘seeing and reacting in modification to, and being modified by, what is’.
Let us begin.
I. Awareness on the Physical Body
Aware of the fact that only the body exists – not a soul, a self or I-dentity, just a phenomenon, a modification of Awareness.
a. Body – form
- sit down
- keeping the body erect
- direct awareness to the body
b. Breathing – function
- breathe in and out with keen awareness
- breathe in long, breath out a long
- breathe in short, breath out short
- aware of whole breath body breathe in, aware of whole breath body breathe out
- calm breath in, calm breath out
- aware of the body as just a body in this place – not mine, not I, not self, just a phenomenon, a modification of awareness
- aware of the body as just a body in other places
- aware of the body as just a body in both this place, and in other places
- aware of the cause of appearance of the body – desire for body
- aware of the actual appearing of the body – feel the body presence
- aware of the cause of dissolution of the body – dissolving of body
- aware of the actual dissolution of the body – let go of the body presence
- aware of both the actual appearing and dissolution of the body with their causes. – desire, presence of body, aversion, dissolving the body, all four states simultaneously
… to be continued