Cooperation, problem solving and, self transcendence?

If a friend asked you, “Why do you meditate?”, what would you answer? Surely you must think it is good for you in some way.

The analogies you raise are all connected with the mind state one strives to cultivate while one is actually mediating. And yes, during that time one cultivates an absence of thought, including a sense of purpose.

But a sense of purpose must be present to motivate you to stop reading a book, for example, and to sit on the floor and meditate. If that sense of purpose didn’t arise, you wouldn’t move your body from the chair to the floor.


This is fine, to have this understanding of what is taking place when practice is arising due to causes and supportive conditions - kusala kamma. This stream of chittas is not-self! There can also be an awareness of that thought process taking place in ‘real time’ without identification, without taking ownership of it. Rather than being the one who ‘appears’ to be making the choice to meditate and then practicing, that thought process can manifest as an object of meditative attention when we are very still and clear. Then it’s not ‘someone’ or a ‘somebody’ who is meditating but a process taking place that arises and ceases without identification or attachment. Thoughts arise and cease without any personal involvement in their content - the story line. Empty conditions rolling on! When everything that is experienced is allowed to arise and cease of its own accord without interference - when there is kindness and gentleness - everything that is experienced has an opportunity to arrive at complete stillness. This stillness cannot be ‘practiced’ it happens by itself! Everything settles down and silence remains. Then, the beautiful jhanas then, formlessness …

Yes but this discussion is about our intentions for meditation, without bringing in not-self which makes the entire discussion superfluous. Its like discussing what the best fertilizer is, for example, and then saying ‘but it is all atoms’. At a level which is not atomic, the question remains valid!

with metta


Yes, the question remains valid, the question is a cognition. There is a perception of how practice takes place. There are feelings that arise in relation to thoughts and perceptions. None of this has anything to do with a self that chooses to meditate or do something else. ‘Intention’ is determined by past kamma - it has nothing to do with a self that makes choices and issues directives. There is no-doer only a stream of chittas arising in a given context. An ever-changing mind/body and a process of identification and clinging - conditioned by ??? If you want me to believe that you are really a ‘somebody’ Mat, who is making choices and determining what you will ‘do’ next then thats fine. I have a sneaking suspicion that things may not be as they seem?

My meditation, no matter what other assistance it might give me, is based on resolve to end rebirth, even of scattered scraps of this life.

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That is a cognitive process that is identified with! When that is seen clearly awakening - the end of becoming - is ???

That was indeed a cognition. It too will be dropped along the way.

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Everything is erased in natural stillness. When there is nowhere to go and, no possibility of gaining traction, there is an end to becoming. ‘We’ cannot end rebirth just let go and everything ceases by itself. Complete simplicity!

Impossible for this being to let go at this time. More sitting walking before one.

Thats a cognition - enjoy it - its worth a loving smile and then let it go! It’s already on its way to cessation. There is nothing that can be done to keep it alive beyond its used-by date! Oh look - here comes another one! Wow - great wonder - thoughts thinking themselves and then vanishing. Whats that - in-between? Falling into the in-between then, the beautiful then, the formless …

Impossible for this being! What being? Exactly what is it that you are doing? That you need to un-do some-how? There is just the repetition of stories - often repeated and identified with. When there is mention of what is possible and impossible treat them both equally and watch them disappear. They will anyway but its very sweet to watch the unfolding - the train of associations - from beginning to end. There is the arising of something subtle that is unspeakably beautiful in the in-between, when it has an opportunity to arise and increase without interference.

Besides. ::grin:: I am a lay woman. Not a professional. I have heard this is a do-not-try-this-at-home DIY project.

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If you are at home you will have to do it at home. It will have to be carried out somewhere - everywhere - in every conscious moment. This is not daunting - staying in a state of greed, hatred and, delusion is daunting - problematic beyond belief. Freedom is a breath of fresh and clean air - A LAYING DOWN OF THE BURDEN. Don’t believe the hype - freedom is your birthright.

You are a laywoman and I am the king of France!

This may help: ‘YOU’ are a laywoman and ‘I’ am the king of France!

There are body/mind continuums (that ‘seems’ apparent) but ‘who’ or ‘what’ is the ‘you’ and the ‘me’? That has not been established beyond reasonable doubt. There are conventional roles and personas and …

We know the names and designations - correct? There is merely-labelled ‘Laurence’ a merely-labelled layman but, what is the basis of these designations - this assumed identity - anicca, dukkha, anatta? The body is a train-wreck waiting to happen and the mind is an evanescent stream of qualia going nowhere in particular.

What is the process - the continuum - that underlies this charade (our personal stories). This story of who I am, one version among others subject to revision and memory loss. ‘I’ am a Buddhist as long as my memory does not fade away - then who am ‘I’?

Take a long and close look and the wonders will never cease!

What would be sad and tragic is an unending identification with that which is not worthy of being called a ‘self’. This is the Buddha’s teachings!

He sort the deathless on seeing the unworthiness of clinging to false identities as ones-self. There is that which is a complete liberation from the death-bound! This is what the Buddha sort and found - thank goodness!

We still need to take appropriate and tender care of the apparent - the given - as it is our field of inquiry. The Buddha is the knower of the worlds! What is the world?

“This fathom-long body with its perception and intellect is the world.” - The Buddha

You are the door through which you must walk - to freedom. Everything else is a waste of precious time - a precious human rebirth?

This is not a dress rehearsal!

Interesting reaction. Sad, but interesting.

Hmmmm. Lawrence, when you edit and reedit your post, my response to the original does not even make sense.

Please, slow down in posting. Otherwise, efforts are wasted :slight_smile:

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I was told it was OK - I don’t get it all at once sorry.

The only thing I would like to add with regard to this message we have all received: it’s not something you can do at home! I have heard that message change slightly over the years - thank goodness.

Traditionally, in Asia, the message from the professionals to the laity was: we do the enlightenment thing and you provide the material support. Then, we give you blessings and family-friendly social occasions.

My teachers are more encouraging now - of our practice - including as much meditation as we feel like doing.

In the traditional dynamic it would seem there was an important emphasis on Dana, taking refuge and blessings, a few bows and a lovely shared meal etc. This is all beautiful but in its transition to the West we have a great deal of interest in the meditation.

I think our interests are best served if we develop a healthy scepticism. If we read or hear something - or we pick up the subliminal message - liberation, freedom, is for us - for others - but not for you, you are not good enough, you lack the dedication, you lack the supportive conditions, you’re not serious about freedom like we are, I think we need to question that. We are all gifted with a precious human life.

Awakening is for every one of us if it is in our hearts. Instead of the useless mantra: impossible! It’s better to ask the question: why not?

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Let’s wake up now and now and now. The Dhamma is not a matter of time, apparent here and now. To be known by the wise each for themselves now and now …

My teacher pointed to freedom - its as clear as a ringing bell! Nama/Rupa phenomena is that which arises in relation to the six kinds of consciousness. The conscious aspect of this phenomenal display also arises and ceases constantly. None of this belongs to anyone or is anyone - snap!

The quality of attention in the present moment is all that is important in this. Look after this moment carefully without identification or attachment. The last one has already let us go with no regret. Return the compliment!


lol i practice as best i can, with patience (hint) and compassion for me too (hint) and with enthusiasm. If you get there before me , buckaroo :slight_smile: bless me and all on the path.

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Nobody gets enlightened and fortunately, there is nobody on the journey - just empty phenomena rolling on on on in need of care-full attention. Let it settle itself!

Without unnecessary and useless identification and attachment there is no fuel, no affirmation of an empty process. When the plug is pulled out the fan keeps spinning for a while and stops. What is there to ‘do’? What stops this from happening? What is the right question? :slight_smile:

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alrighty then. On that note, bbl

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