Dhamma Letter No. 91
Satipatthana 15 : Kayanupassana 6 - Anapanasati 3
Mindfulness of Breathing 3
How does a monk live by observing the body from body to body? A monk who follows my teachings goes to a secluded place under a tree in the forest, straightens his upper body on a cross-legged chair, and with an awake mind he closely adheres to the breath and notices the inhalation and exhalation. Just as a skilled potter turns the wheel slowly and notices ‘Turn slowly’ and turns it fast and notices ‘Turn fast’. (DN22)
When rough breathing is observed, we look at it as it is, and know that it is rough; when fine and soft breathing is observed, we look at it as it is, and we know that it is 'fine and soft'.
It is important to feel your breathing as it is, without any control or intention. Breathing can be done anytime and anywhere as a meditation topic, so it is most important to keep this in mind until the end of this life, whether you are a beginner, an intermediate or an advanced person.
It is so simple and easy that it is often overlooked!
For those who are not satisfied while searching for another meditation topic, I hope that they will return to the original mind of a meditator and strengthen their will to practice.
Please take a good look at the breathing meditation that the Buddha suggested to Rāhula at 16 levels. Start again every day from the first and second steps. We hope to achieve satisfactory results through continuous practice.
Quotation of Mahārāhulovādasutta (MN 62)
1. When I breathe in long, I know clearly that I am breathing in long, and when I breathe out long, I know clearly that I breathe out long.
2. When I breathe in short, I know clearly that I am breathing in short, and when I breathe out short, I know clearly that I breathe out short.
3. Experiencing the whole body, I commit to inhaling, and experiencing the whole body, I commit to exhaling.
4. As I calm the formation of the body, I commit to inhaling, and while calming the formation of the body, I commit to exhaling.
5. Experiencing joy, I commit to inhaling, and experiencing joy, I commit to exhaling.
6. Experiencing pleasure, I commit to inhaling, and experiencing pleasure, I commit to exhaling.
7. Experiencing the formation of the mind I commit to inhaling, and experiencing the formation of the mind I commit to exhaling.
8. In calming the formation of the mind, I commit to inhaling, and in calming the formation of the mind, I commit to exhaling.
9. Experiencing the mind, I commit to inhaling, and experiencing the mind, I commit to exhaling.
10. As I rejoice in the heart, I commit myself to inhaling, and in rejoicing the heart I commit myself to exhaling.
11. Concentrating the mind I commit myself to inhaling, and concentrating the mind I commit myself to exhaling.
12. As I let go of the mind, I commit myself to inhaling, and as I let go of the mind, I commit to exhaling.
13. Observing impermanence, I devote myself to breathing in, and observing impermanence, I devote myself to exhaling.
14. Observing the cessation of desire, I commit to inhaling, and observing the cessation of desire, I commit to exhaling.
15. Observing the cessation, I commit myself to inhaling, and in observing the cessation, I devote myself to exhaling.
16. Observing letting go I commit myself to inhaling, and observing letting go I commit myself to exhaling.
Rāhula, if you practice breathing meditation like this and repeat it like this, you will get great results and great merit. Rāhula, if you practice this breathing note and repeat it this way, even when the last in-breath and ex-breath disappear, you are noticing and not disappearing without knowing it.
If you put all your strength into taking care of the object without giving up, the moment you come to know its true nature and understand it clearly, you will control your greed and anger for the world (five aggregates) while also being able to let go of it.
All four observations of the practice of Four foundation are contained here. It is possible to do Samatha meditation to focus on one with each content, and it can also be used as Vipassana meditation to observe the whole objectively. (What are the differences between samatha and vipassana as they relate to samadhi? : Dhamma Letter No. 6, & No.5)
To be continued…
May you cultivate your Sati continuously (Samma-Viriya)!
May you achieve the Samma-Sati through Satipatthāna (vipassana meditation)!
May all practice well and reach to Magga (道, the path of enlightenment) and Phala(果, the fruit of enlightenment)!
Ayyā Kosallā & Mahāpajāpatī Bhikkhunī Sangha
Edited by Euna Bonovich
If you have any questions related to dhamma & meditation, please feel free to ask. You can reach Ayya Kosalla directly at Bhikkhuni.Kosalla@gmail.com .
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Buddha Sāsanaṁ Ciraṁ Tiṭṭhatu!
May the Buddha’s teachings last a long time!
Bhavatu Sabba Sotiṁ ca Maṅgalaṁ ca!!
May everyone be led on the path of peace and blessing!!
Sādhu Sādhu Sādhu !