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Dhamma Techniques To Contemplate Hindrances | Vipassana Meditation

Dhamma Techniques To Contemplate Hindrances | Vipassana Meditation

Phenomena here refers to the objects which are perceived by, are part of, or imagined by the mind. In accordance with the conditions experienced by the meditator, it can be named as natural phenomena, which the meditator should be mindful of and simultaneously contemplate by keeping awareness at every moment as follows:

When seeing, note "seeing, seeing, seeing". Only contemplate the silhouette of what is seen. Do not focus on the eyes or gaze at what is seen, otherwise the mind will be broken up by the defilement. When hearing, note "hearing, hearing, hearing". Only contemplate the state of hearing. Do not fix the mind on the ears. Only contemplate the state of the ears perceiving the sound. And remember that ears and sound exist separately. When smelling, note "smelling, smelling, smelling". At the beginning, simply contemplate what the nose perceives as odor; do not pay attention whether such odor is pleasant or unpleasant. When strong concentration is attained, the meditator will be able to contemplate the quality of it automatically. When tasting, note "tasting, tasting, tasting". At the beginning, simply contemplate what the tongue perceives as flavor; do not recognize it in detail since doing this with insufficient concentration, agitation and stress will arise. When touching, note "touching, touching, touching". Only contemplate when part of body is in contact with objects. For instant, when touching a cool object, note "cool, cool,cool". When touching a hot one, note "hot, hot, hot". When touching asoft one, note "soft, soft, soft". And when touching ahard one, note "hard, hard, hard".

Contemplation of hindrances (Nivarana 5) Hindrances are natural phenomena which hold the mind back form the virtue. It is necessary to have right knowledge and contemplation for each kind of hindrances. Lacking such understanding, the hindrances will be setinto the mind and be hard to work out. The mind made up of hindrances normally harms the development of the practice and morals.

The way to contemplate hindrances (Nivarana 5):

  1. Sensual desire (Kamacchanda) is a cause of pleasure or satisfaction from sensual objects (form, sound, smell, taste, and touch). When feeling glad, note "glad, glad, glad". When feeling content, note "content, content, content".When feeling pleased, note "pleased, pleased, pleased".
  2. Illwill (Byapada) is a cause of discontent or dissatisfaction. When being frustrated, note "frustrated, frustrated, frustrated". When being disappointed, note "disappointed, disappointed, disappointed". When angry, note "angry, angry, angry". When vengeful, note "vengeful,vengeful, vengeful".
  3. Sloth and torpor (Thina-middha),. The mind or mental factors diverting from mental exercises brings about drowsiness, despair, laziness, grief and so forth.When drowsy, note "drowsy, drowsy, drowsy", "daunted, daunted, daunted","depressed, depressed, depressed", "lazy, lazy, lazy", "sad, sad, sad". It is recommended to contemplate firmly, intensely, and continuously, comparable to repetitively thrashing a person or animal with a stick or whip until such person or animal cannot endure and finally passes away.This contemplation makes the mind and mental factors stay awake in which the discouragement and despair are lightened or eliminated. The meditator may be able to resists drowsiness by do more mindful walking more and by walking faster. When getting drowsy, it is recommended to perform mindful walking longer than sitting about fifteen to thirty minutes to alleviate drowsiness. However, to remove it, the meditator has to keep on contemplating and to avoidcreating the conditions that increase drowsiness such as having food that is difficult to digest or eating too much and so on.
  4. Restlessness and anxiety (Uddhacca-kukkucca), is what most meditators are afraid of Restlessness and thoughts are different. Thought normally comes into a form of words, sentences or short stories, while restlessness is a kind of discrete stories. It is said that thought is comparable to boiling water. When water comes to the boil, there bubbles are gradually noticed. While restlessness is comparable to water that is boiling. Thus, the meditator should be able to distinguish and straight to contemplate them. Whenagitated, note "agitated, agitated, agitated", "bothered, bothered, bothered", "annoyed, annoyed, annoyed" and "confused, confused, confused". The contemplation should be fast, intense, precise, and continuous so that nothing can bother the meditator. On the other hand, the meditator contemplates attentively and occasionally slowly in order to remain relaxed and keep away from stress.
  5. Doubt (Vicikiccha) here refers to skepticism and apprehension. Whendoubtful, note "doubtful, doubtful, doubtful", "anxious, anxious, anxious", "worried, worried, worried" and so on. Try to contemplate corresponding to what the meditator really feels. This will make the mind fix on the objects. Expect nothing during the contemplation; keep the mind on the existing phenomenon as much as possible. This contemplation described above is part of the development of mind in accordance with the four foundations of mindfulness meditation named "Dhammanupassana".

To sum up, the practice of the four foundations of mindfulness meditation is to contemplate materiality and mentality (rupa-nama) as they exist. While contemplation of body (Kayanupassana) engages in materiality, contemplation of feelings (Vedananupassana) and mind (Cittanupassana) engage in mentality, and contemplation of phenomena (Dhammanupassana) engages in both materiality and mentality.


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