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meditation

 
 
Reply Mon 11 Jul, 2011 04:31 pm
im currently researching meditation, and looking into the possibility of taking it up. however, its hard to find anything that i would consider genuine information, too many people trying to sell their ambient sounds and rubbish like that. or filled with the usual slogans.

i really want to read a book that involves eastern philosphies that a based around the buddha, with an intention to ponder this during a 'meditaion' type period.

would anyone have any suggestions for either the book or meditation techniques. it would be really helpful!

thanks
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Type: Question • Score: 5 • Views: 1,867 • Replies: 16
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Jul, 2011 06:00 pm
@hemingway,
Are you interested in meditation for matters of health (stress management, blood pressure control) or mental hygiene ("enlightenment")? Meditation is a simple process that, in the beginning, is very hard to do. It requires considerable determination, but after five or more years it becomes a profoundly peaceful, nutritious, and joyful activity, one which you'll probably want to do daily for its own sake. Find a teacher of vipassana meditation or join a zen community. Decent books on the subject of technique are everywhere.
hemingway
 
  1  
Reply Tue 12 Jul, 2011 11:33 am
@JLNobody,
i want to use it as a time to think about everything and anything, and train myself to think. but as something that i enjoy
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Tue 12 Jul, 2011 11:40 am
@hemingway,
Sounds like you want to "contemplate." Meditation is something else, definitely not a method of "thinking about" anything, even profound ideas.
hemingway
 
  1  
Reply Tue 12 Jul, 2011 04:18 pm
@JLNobody,
ok, is there anything that would involve a contemplation like state which is similar to meditation.

i may in fact develop it myself. i dont understand what meditation might be if it wernt to contemplate 'yourself'? and what i mean is i suppose a mix of both of them, but in fact they are both sub categories of what i acctually mean. ill read this tomorrow, and probably edit.(make it more clear, im v tierd)
vikorr
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Jul, 2011 02:58 am
@hemingway,
Meditation is bringing your mind to state of stillness - where thought ceases to exist. It's point is 'stillness' or 'nothingness' or perhaps 'a single object'. Usually with your mind coming into a state of relaxedness - your body also enters that state. It aims to access the subconconscious mind through relaxation and produce a state of 'freedom' unburdened by thought (ie nothingness).

Contemplation (of the nature you seem to be seeking) is bringing your mind to a state of quietness (esentially stillness, but...) so that you may look at an object/emotion/concept/construct from multiple angles. It aims to access the subconscious mind to better understand (the 'problem'). The idea is not to have your conscious mind analyse it, but your subconscious mind (your conscious mind has already failed at the analysis, or is not up to the task, otherwise why else would you try this method)

Hypnosis works by overwhelming the conscious mind so that the subconscious takes over, and it's purpose is to affect change in the subconscious mind. Where meditation seeks emptiness, Hypnosis seeks to place a 'concept' in the subconscious mind, to achieve a goal.

As a side note - there are other methods of accessing/programming the subconscious : NLP, affirmations, mirror work, pendulums, visualisation, focus, training, repetition...and many other ways (everything we do, does actually access/program our subconscious to some degree).
hemingway
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Jul, 2011 03:35 pm
@vikorr,
vikorr wrote:

Contemplation (of the nature you seem to be seeking) is bringing your mind to a state of quietness (esentially stillness, but...) so that you may look at an object/emotion/concept/construct from multiple angles. It aims to access the subconscious mind to better understand (the 'problem'). The idea is not to have your conscious mind analyse it, but your subconscious mind (your conscious mind has already failed at the analysis, or is not up to the task, otherwise why else would you try this method)


this is along the right lines, however i have the mental ability, at least i believe i do, to contemplate the ideas that i wish to in my conscious state of mind. i have moments where i just 'am' and think, explore different concepts that just spring into my head. these moments are few and far between, but there are glimpses here and there. i want to achieve the state of 'stillness' that you refer to, but not in a way that is on a personal level, as i believe the subconscious does not hide any 'secret' ability that my conscious cannot access. the subconscious, by my definition, relates only to ones personal attributes and feelings, not ones ability to do anything that they cant already do.

this is why i think i may have to develop this as a subjective technique, as it is not (to my knowledge) something that someone has explored before, well at least not documented.

you may think i refer to epiphanic moments, in a way i do, but there is no reason to doubt that an 'epiphany' cannot last for a substantial period of time, which is contrary to what an epiphany is.
kuvasz
 
  2  
Reply Wed 13 Jul, 2011 03:46 pm
@hemingway,
Try reading the works on Zen by Daisetsu Teitaro Suzuki. An interesting start would be "Introduction to Zen Buddhism," and "Zen Mind Beginners Mind."
JLNobody
 
  2  
Reply Wed 13 Jul, 2011 08:00 pm
@kuvasz,
I would suggest, Kuvasz, that you are referring to two different Suzikis. D.T. Susuki is one of the first writers on zen. He was a lay scholar, not a practicing zen master. And his work is relatively hard to follow. The other Suzuki is Shunryu Suzuki, one of my favorite voices on zen. He wrote Zen Mind, Beginners Mind.
kuvasz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Jul, 2011 09:24 pm
@JLNobody,
you are right, I just pulled both off of my shelves to see, sorry for the confusion.
0 Replies
 
vikorr
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Jul, 2011 12:11 am
@hemingway,
Quote:
this is along the right lines, however i have the mental ability, at least i believe i do, to contemplate the ideas that i wish to in my conscious state of mind. i have moments where i just 'am' and think, explore different concepts that just spring into my head. these moments are few and far between, but there are glimpses here and there.
One of the facts of life is that your conscious is able to focus on just the one thing at a time. Even women who claim to be able to multi-task have been shown to be unable to do so - what they do is switch their attention quickly, and keep track of multiple threads, but they can only focus on the one thing at a time. Your subconscious on the other hand, is able to 'focus' on many things at once. It is truly able to multi-task.

While your memories are at times difficult to recall, your subconscious has no difficulty - it's all there. Hence hypnotherapists can access very detailed memories. Hence different things will trigger 'memories' that you had 'forgotten'. Some people who train their subconscious through the use of pendulums claim to be able to find anything in any room, even if it's been lost for years, simply through the ability to use a pendulum as an access key to the subconscious.

'Leaps of Logic' aren't done consciously - they are always done subconsciously. Step by step logic is what is done consciously. Intuition is subconscious, while logic is more conscious.

Habits that you find yourself doing 'without thought' are subconscious, while learning newly needed skills are mostly conscious.

Every thought you have produces changes in your body that is driven by your subconscious mind.

Your mind has several 'organs' within in, whose functions are 'logic', 'instinct', 'emotions', 'organ functioning', 'motor movement' etc. These aspects of the brain incurr differing levels of effect on our consciousness.

Your conscious and subconscious obviously have a great amount of interplay, but they do not work in the same way - and no one (that I know of) has complete access to their subconscious. Most would only have access to (at a guess) 3% of their subconscious...and I may be being generous there.

0 Replies
 
igm
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Jul, 2011 06:15 am
@hemingway,
hemingway wrote:

im currently researching meditation, and looking into the possibility of taking it up. however, its hard to find anything that i would consider genuine information, too many people trying to sell their ambient sounds and rubbish like that. or filled with the usual slogans.

i really want to read a book that involves eastern philosphies that a based around the buddha, with an intention to ponder this during a 'meditaion' type period.

would anyone have any suggestions for either the book or meditation techniques. it would be really helpful!

thanks


Meditation is taught here:

Sakya Buddhist Centre London
(Sakya Dechen Ling)
31A St Lukes Road
Notting Hill
London
W11 1DB

Contact: [email protected]
+44 (0) 20 7183 2109

for more info:

http://www.dechen.org/centres/southeast/london.html

You can message me if you have any questions Smile
Fil Albuquerque
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Jul, 2011 09:31 am
@igm,
So you think meditation can be taught...hmmm... Rolling Eyes
(what else can we buy in the supermarket these days ? ampakines ?)
Foofie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Jul, 2011 09:40 am
@hemingway,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness ?
0 Replies
 
igm
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Jul, 2011 09:53 am
@Fil Albuquerque,
Fil Albuquerque wrote:

So you think meditation can be taught...hmmm... Rolling Eyes
(what else can we buy in the supermarket these days ? ampakines ?)

Yes, the traditional posture and technique of a simple calm abiding meditation is taught (to beginners) and unlike the supermarket it’s not seen as a product so there’s no charge.
Fil Albuquerque
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Jul, 2011 10:03 am
@igm,
...it very much depends on your larger or smaller version of what "coin" amounts to mean...to where I stand if there is value there is coin...

...kind off, I go there I "buy" me self some "calm" and they buy another flock member to rock their boat...
(with our without justification, is of no importance for the matter...lets assume they are right in their teachings...even so...)

...besides you should know that "learning" is just remembering who you are...
(precisely why some people don´t learn anything no matter what you do to teach them...)
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Wed 27 May, 2015 04:39 pm
I am writing these notes many years after this thread ended. I am a strong advocate of meditation, I started it 55 years ago with a bona fide master (Sasaki Joshu who died recently at the age of 107). But my practice was irregular until 1978 when it became a steady commitment. The practice of (zen) meditation changed me from a hyperactive (ADHD) wreck to a considerably pacific and centered individual. I tried many "techniques", finding all of them useful in some ways. But I believe one has to pretty much learn on one's own. I prefer the term practice in reference to the way one does Buddhism. It is more a way of life than an ideology, more a question of actions than beliefs.
Frankly, I prefer zen (Mahayana Buddhism) to the growing movement of Theravadan Buddhismm (or the practice of vipassana popular in the United States today).But that is a personal preference. In vipassana one does something very beneficial and useful: the careful non-judgemental self observation, much like what Krishnamurti called "choiceless awareness". My approach excludes the practice of koan study (I grew tired of it). What I favor is the virtually microscopic examination of mundane experience without continuous reference to the "lessons" cited verbatim , supposedly by the Buddha, in the Pali Canon (cf. Joseph Goldstein).
I have every confidence that most people can benefit substantially by sitting still at least once a day in quiet observation (just sitting, nothing more: what is called shikantaza:a good word to look up for inspiration).
Good luck
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