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"Rise and Fall" How to practice it? - Dhamma Wheel

"Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

On the cultivation of insight/wisdom
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Alex123
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"Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:34 pm

"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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mikenz66
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:07 pm


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legolas
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby legolas » Thu Jun 16, 2011 1:52 pm


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Alex123
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby Alex123 » Thu Jun 16, 2011 7:15 pm

Hello Legolas, all,


You are right. Many suttas if read in pali, do literally say to "think this, think that". They do use direct quotation marks. Many of meditations (ex: AN5.57) cannot be done non-verbally, and yet do lead to awakening. It seems that not-thinking (or not perceiving) is not the goal that one tries to achieve. One needs to make all taṇhā fade, extinguish and fade down. Not every thought is an expression of taṇhā or avijjā. Some thoughts can be wholesome and some unwholesome. It seems possible that proper kinds of thinking do lead to fading away of fetters.

""Whatever a monk keeps pursuing with his thinking & pondering, that becomes the inclination of his awareness. If a monk keeps pursuing thinking imbued with sensuality, abandoning thinking imbued with renunciation, his mind is bent by that thinking imbued with sensuality....
"And as I remained thus heedful, ardent, & resolute, thinking imbued with renunciation arose. I discerned that 'Thinking imbued with renunciation has arisen in me; and that leads neither to my own affliction, nor to the affliction of others, nor to the affliction of both. It fosters discernment, promotes lack of vexation, & leads to Unbinding.
" - http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


"The Blessed One said: "When a monk is intent on the heightened mind, there are five themes he should attend to at the appropriate times. Which five?
"Now when a monk... attending to another theme... scrutinizing the drawbacks of those thoughts... paying no mind and paying no attention to those thoughts... attending to the relaxing of thought-fabrication with regard to those thoughts... beating down, constraining and crushing his mind with his awareness... steadies his mind right within, settles it, unifies it and concentrates it: He is then called a monk with mastery over the ways of thought sequences. He thinks whatever thought he wants to, and doesn't think whatever thought he doesn't. He has severed craving, thrown off the fetters, and — through the right penetration of conceit — has made an end of suffering and stress.
" - http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html



"'I am subject to aging, have not gone beyond aging.' This is the first fact that one should reflect on often, whether one is a woman or a man, lay or ordained.
"'I am subject to illness, have not gone beyond illness.' ...
"'I am subject to death, have not gone beyond death.' ...
"'I will grow different, separate from all that is dear and appealing to me.' ...
"'I am the owner of my actions,[1] heir to my actions, born of my actions, related through my actions, and have my actions as my arbitrator. Whatever I do, for good or for evil, to that will I fall heir.' ...
...
When he/she often reflects on this, the [factors of the] path take birth. He/she sticks with that path, develops it, cultivates it. As he/she sticks with that path, develops it and cultivates it, the fetters are abandoned, the obsessions destroyed."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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tiltbillings
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Jun 16, 2011 7:21 pm


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Alex123
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby Alex123 » Thu Jun 16, 2011 7:53 pm

"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Jun 16, 2011 8:46 pm


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legolas
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby legolas » Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:26 pm

Possibly one of the most straightforward approaches to jhana is this.......

"Anuruddha, when you think these eight thoughts of a great person, then — whenever you want — quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful qualities, you will enter & remain in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. When you think these eight thoughts of a great person, then — whenever you want — with the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, you will enter & remain in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of composure, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance... with the fading of rapture, you will remain in equanimity, mindful & alert, physically sensitive to pleasure. You will enter & remain in the third jhana, of which the Noble Ones declare, 'Equanimous and mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.' When you think these eight thoughts of a great person, then — whenever you want — with the abandoning of pleasure & pain, as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress, you will enter & remain in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither-pleasure-nor-pain."


The above does not mean that mindfulness of body, feelings etc. is not practised in parallel with the discursive thinking, more that they flow into each other. A wholesome thought that arises and persists could develop into rapture and away you go with deepening mindfulness and jhana. The discursive thinking subsides and 2nd jhana is attained. However the discursive thoughts are the instigators for the whole process. Second jhana and above might be great and the mind is still & unified, but the Buddha seems to be teaching that you get there, not by intense focus but by a gradual unification of the faculties facilitated by thought.

Reductor
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby Reductor » Fri Jun 17, 2011 3:56 pm

Sadhu! I have found thinking steadily on dhamma topics or themes to be most reliable path to wholesome unification of mind.

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Alex123
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby Alex123 » Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:50 am

Hello all,

I was thinking about it. And the only way it seems likely to me that doesn't involve thinking would be:

To notice the empty space between two thoughts, when one thought has ceased and another thought has not yet arisen. Same with internal images, emotions and other mental states. Try to observe what happens in that split second before a thought or any other mental state arises.


With metta,

Alex
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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tiltbillings
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:56 am


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mikenz66
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Jun 19, 2011 4:20 am

I agree with Tilt. I'm a relative amateur compared to some people here, but my experience is that after several days on silent retreat building up mindfulness and concentration it's really not that difficult to get some idea of what the Buddha was talking about. If you attend closely then there will be times when the experiences start to break up into discrete chunks. This is perceived, then that is perceived, and so on. No need to think about it, that's just what you "see".

As far as I can tell from discussions in "real life" and here, most people who do some moderately serious practice have these sort of experiences. However, exactly how they manifest seems to depend on the individual and on the particular approach being used.

I don't want to come across as condescending, but I know from my own experience that I can discern things after several days of retreat that are simply not noticeable in my "normal life", where I generally only have an hour or so for specific mediation practice each day. Trying to decide what the Buddha taught about "rise and fall" by just reading suttas, and not actually making the attempt to experience what he talks about, doesn't seem to me to be particularly fruitful.

:anjali:
Mike

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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby legolas » Sun Jun 19, 2011 8:39 am


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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Jun 19, 2011 8:48 am


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legolas
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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby legolas » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:33 am


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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:41 am


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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:59 am


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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sun Jun 19, 2011 10:00 am


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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Jun 19, 2011 10:01 am


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Re: "Rise and Fall" How to practice it?

Postby legolas » Sun Jun 19, 2011 10:05 am



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