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Buddhist meditation, meditation used in the practice of Buddhism, "includes any method of meditation that has Enlightenment as its ultimate aim"1. The closest word for meditation in the classical languages of Buddhism is bhavana or "mental development"2.
The main methods
The main methods of Buddhist meditation are divided into samatha (tranquility meditations) and vipassana (insight meditations).
The samatha meditations includes anapana (mindfulness of breathing, or mindfulness of the in-breath and out-breath) and the four brahma-viras (lit. "sublime abodes") of which mettā bhāvanā (development of loving kindness) is the most often practiced one. The vipassana meditations includes contemplation on impermanence, the six element practice, and contemplation on conditionality. Samatha meditations usually precede and prepare for vipassana meditations.
Each of the five basic methods (in bold) is an "antidote" to one of the five mental "poisons".
|anapana (mindfulnes of breathing)||distraction||concentration|
|metta bhavana||hatred and sentimental attachment||loving kindness|
|karuna bhavana||cruelty, sentimental pity and horrified anxiety||compassion|
|mudita bhavana||resentment, envy and vicarious enjoyment||sympathetic joy|
|upekkha bhavana||fixed indifference and apathetic neutrality||equanimity|
|contemplation on impermanence||craving||inner peace, freedom|
|six element practice||conceit||clarity regarding nature of self|
|contemplation on conditionality||ignorance||wisdom, compassion|
- Agni Yoga (religious doctrine)
- Lotus position
- Skumin mind control method
- Padmaloka, retreat centre in Surlingham, Norwich, UK
- Six Yogas of Naropa
- The Path to Nirvana
- Vipassana jhanas
- Matthew Flickstein and Bhante Henepola Gunaratana. (1998) Journey to the Center: A Meditation Workbook. Wisdom Publications. ISBN 0861711416.
- Note 1: Kamalashila (1996), Meditation: The Buddhist Art of Tranquility and Insight, Birmingham: Windhorse Publications, ISBN 1899579052.
- Note 2: Epstein, Mark (1995), Thoughts Without a Thinker: Psychotherapy from a Buddhist Perspective, BasicBooks, ISBN 0465039316.
- Buddhist Meditation in the Theravada tradition
- Buddhist Meditation
- Dhammakaya foundation
- Guided Meditations on the Lamrim — The Gradual Path to Enlightenment by Bhikshuni Thubten Chodron (PDF file).
pt:Meditação budista fr:méditation bouddhique
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