Buddhist Association of Canada Cham Shan Temple 加拿大佛教會 湛山精舍 禪修學佛入門 Introduction to Buddhism and Meditation 2011/06/04
Buddhist Association of Canada Cham Shan Temple ná mó fó tuó 南 無 佛 陀 Namo Buddha ná mó dá mó 南 無 達 摩 Namo Dharma ná mó sēng qié 南 無 僧 伽 Namo Sangha
Meditation禪修 Towards a Liberated and Enlightened Life 煩惱輕智慧長
Nine Stages of Calming Abiding (Samatha) 九住心 Inner placement - Monk chasing elephant and monkey 內住 Continual placement 續住 Patch-like placement 安住 Close placement or Good fixation 近住 Becoming disciplined 調順 Pacifying or becoming peaceful 寂靜 Fully pacifying 最極寂靜 Becoming single-pointed 專住一趣 Fixed absorption or meditative equipoise 等持
Symbols Monk – Meditator Winding path – toward equilibrium, enlightenment Turbulent river – Distractions Grey monkey – restless mind Grey Elephant – Dullness mind Rabbit – laziness White – the mind is stabilizing Ax/Hook – Vigilance, detect distractions, Rope – Mindfulness, continual awareness Raging fire – tremendous effort
Six Collection of Causes/Conditions to Samatha Abiding in a harmonious or a conducive place To have fewer desires To be content To be free of the hustle and bustle of a lot of different activities. To be able to protect well whatever resolution one has taken. ["pure morality" or moral discipline.] Reduce one’s attachment to objects of desire.
The Nine Stages of Samatha Meditation There are 6 forces that come into play: the force of hearing, the force of contemplating, the force of mindfulness, the force of introspection, the force of enthusiasm and the force of complete familiarity; These are the 6 forces for developing the state of Samatha.
Five Hindrances 1) Laziness; 2) Forgetting the Object; 3) Sinking and excitement; 4) Not applying the antidotes; 5) Over-application of the antidotes.
Antidotes 1) faith; 2) aspiration; 3) perseverance; 4) blissful pliancy of mind; 5) mindfulness; 6) introspection; 7) vigilance 8) applying the antidotes; 9) non-application of antidoteswhen they’re not necessary.
The Nine Stages of Samatha Meditation There are 4 kinds of application that are said to be used. The first and second stages of setting the mind are attained through a kind of application that’s called the "tight" application. Then in the third to the seventh settings of the mind, the third to the seventh stages, those are said to be attained through an application that is called "interrupted application." And then the eighth, through "uninterrupted application;" and then the ninth, through “spontaneous” application.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation1st Stage (1) The first of these is called "placing the mind within." Or, you could say "inner placement." There are six forces that are coming to play in this process. And it’s said that that first placement, the inner placement of the mind, comes about through the force of the hearing. So through the force of hearing the description, then one has found the object, and then places the mind on it.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation1st Stage So in the course of this, one will recognize discursiveness; one will recognize thoughts. And it will seem like there’s even more thoughts appearing than normal. But actually, prior to placing the mind on the object like this, the mind has been distracted, wandering around, we just never noticed how many thoughts were coming into the mind. Thus you get an experience of recognizing the thoughts.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 2nd Stage (2) Then through the force of contemplating of that object, bringing it to mind again and again, then one becomes able to extend the period of holding the object a bit longer. And that’s the next stage, which is called "the continual placement." The measure of this would be that, say, if during the course of meditating on the object, or sitting for three minutes, that for one minute one would be able to hold the object without losing it. So, comparing these two stages, the first and the second, in the first stage where the mind is placed, inwardly placed on the object, there’s a lot more distraction outside at that stage than there is in the second stage.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 2nd Stage And so at that second stage the mind is able to remain placed on the object for a longer period than in the first stage. And at that second stage of continual placement, one has an experience, and it seems like one’s thoughts are losing energy. . .the thoughts are getting exhausted, they’re not coming so often as before. This second placement is accomplished through the force of contemplating, so among the six forces, that’s the force that enables one to attain this second placement, which means contemplatingof the object again and again.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 3rd Stage (3) The next stage is accomplished through one’s mindfulness becoming stronger and stronger, such that at a certain point, as soon as the object is lost, as soon as the mind wanders outward to something else, then the power of the memory or the mindfulness becomes so strong that it can immediately bring the mind back to the object. And if it happens again and again, [it] immediately brings the mind back to the object. And this is called the "patch-like placement of the mind."
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 3 Stage So at this point of the patch-like placement, the period of the distraction has become very much reduced, so that the period of placing the mind, abiding on the object is now much more than the length of the distraction. For instance, maybe in the course of one minute of meditating on the object, maybe only 13 seconds of that would be time that was distracted from the object. So at this point it’s said that one has the experience of the "elimination of the intensity of the thoughts." So before, the thoughts were getting tired, right? But now, it’s called the erasure of the intensity of those thoughts. This stage of the patch-like placement is accomplished through the force of mindfulness, of remembering the object.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 4th Stage (4) As the mindfulness gets stronger and stronger, the mind becomes more and more focused inwardly, brought in, collected in. Then one reaches the next stage, the fourth stage, which is called the "close placement." And at that point, there is no longer any loss of the object. The object is never lost, it’s always kept in the awareness. But even though the object is no longer lost, at any time, the sinking and excitement at that time present a lot of problems. The difference between the third and the fourth stage is that [in] the third stage the object is still lost from time to time...but in the fourth stage it’s no longer lost: even though there may be sinking and excitement occurring, the object itself is not lost. So that fourth stage is also accomplished through the force of the mindfulness.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 4th Stage You’re familiar with the object already; the idea is that you’re remembering it through mindfulness. And to that mindfulness, the aspect of the object needs to be something that’s clear, something that’s been understood clearly or seen clearly. So the function of that mindfulness is the prevention of the mind from wandering away from the object. So mindfulness is just like a rope taking the example of the elephant, it’s like "tying the elephant to a stake."
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 5th Stage (5) Now, continuing to meditate from this fourth sage of close placement, and because the mind has become very withdrawn, very much drawn inward, then there’s a lot of obstructions that arise from the sinking. So that’s why the fifth stage is called "subduing." Because at that stage there needs to be a lot of vigilance paid to subduing that "sinking" that occurs. That fifth stage of subduing is attained through the force of introspection that alertness, or that introspection.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 5th Stage What happens as the mind gets so intensely withdrawn is that it gets kind of lowered, it gets brought down too much, and so the mind therefore needs to be uplifted somewhat at that stage in order to subdue that sinking. So in order to do that, one reflects on the advantages and the benefits of developing that calm abiding, that perfectly focused, peaceful state of mind. But as one applies this uplifting of the mind by thinking of such things as the benefits of samatha meditation, it subdues that sinking, but then it can overbalance into the excitement again.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 6th Stage (6) The next stage is called "pacifying," meaning pacifying the excitement that occurs. Because at that stage, one needs to be very vigilant towards seeing excitement arise, and applying antidotes to that. So the difference between the fifth and the sixth stages is that [in] the fifth stage there’s a lot of danger from the sinking that needs to be countered, and one needs to be vigilant about that; but at the sixth stage, it’s the excitement that’s more prevalent, and one needs to be vigilant about applying the antidotes for that. This sixth stage of pacifying is also attained through the force of introspection or alertness.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 7th Stage (7) At the seventh stage, one’s mind no longer goes under the influence of the sinking and excitement. The sinking and excitement still need to be countered at that time, but the mind is never lost to them; at that stage it never comes under the influence of the sinking and excitement. So at that point the sinking and excitement become like fighting each other and need to be countered and subdued. They still need the antidotes applied to them, but the mind no longer can be beaten or come under the influence or be controlled by the sinking and excitement. So the name of this seventh stage is "complete pacification." So at that stage, it’s still possible that the excitement and sinking can occur, but it becomes much less, much rarer. And that seventh stage is also attained through the force of introspection.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 8th Stage (8) By continuing to meditate, then, with the force of joyful effort, or enthusiasm, then the sinking and excitement no longer occur at all. And one no longer even has to watch out for them; one no longer has to be vigilant for them. This is the eighth stage, which is called "becoming single pointed." And it’s accomplished through the force of enthusiasm.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 9th Stage (9) Through the force of complete familiarity, then one reaches the ninth stage. And at that point the object of the meditation appears effortlessly and spontaneously. And that ninth stage is called "equipoise," or "equal placement." Now as one continues the meditation at this stage, then at a certain point one starts to get a heavy feeling on the crown of one’s head. It would be similar to the feeling of, say, in cold weather, and your head was shaved, then a hand was placed on the crown of your head. A kind of a warm feeling, there, on the crown of one’s head, and then because of that, what happens next is that there’s a kind of warmth that arises in one’s navel area.
The Nine Stages of SamathaMeditation – 9th Stage And not only does one’s mind become totally pliant, in this way, and blissful, but then one’s body also develops this pliancy, and one gets a feeling of being very light, as if one could fly through space. And based on this pliancy of the body, this experience coming, then there’s a physical bliss that then one experiences. And then after that, then one experiences the bliss of mental pliancy, where one’s mind also becomes very blissful-feeling. And then at a certain point, that experience of the bliss of the mental pliancy subsides somewhat, and at that point one is said to have obtained what’s called "immutable pliancy." And it’s at that point that one has accomplished samatha meditation.
Ten Virtuous Actions 行十善 1. Not to take a life(Protect life) 不殺生(護生) 2. Not to take what is not given(Giving) 不偷盜(布施) 3. Avoid Sexual Misconduct(Pure Sangha) 不邪淫(梵行) 4. Not to Deceive (Honesty) 不妄語(誠實) 5. Avoid Slander of others(Harmonizing) 不兩舌(和諍) 6. Avoid Harsh words(Kind Words)不惡口(愛語) 7. Avoid Empty Speech(Truthful)不綺語(質直) 8. Avoid Greedy Thoughts((Pure Thoughts)不貪(清淨) 9. Not to be Malicious(Compassion)不瞋(慈悲) 10. Avoid the Wrong View(Right View)不癡(正見)
Three Nonvirtuous Actions of Mind The first migewa, or non-virtuous activity, of mind is covetousness貪婪. We covet or want something, but not just anything—we want something that belongs to someone else. Where does covetousness arise in the mind? It arises because, at its root, the mind is desirous. Essentially, we want something that belongs to another, and we want it to be ours. So covetousness comes from desire, and it becomes the basis for the motivation of stealing.
Three Nonvirtuous Actions of Mind The second one is, literally, harmful intent[瞋]. The mind is engrossed in wanting to hurt. At its root, it has hatred. The first root is desire, in terms of covetousness. Out of desire we want something, which leads to us really wanting it and ultimately taking it from someone else. Harmful intent has a sense of crossing the boundary of compassion and moving forward—damage is coming soon. We have left the land of compassion and entered into the country of hatred, where everyone is very upset. This leads to wanting others to suffer. Harmful intent covers many areas of hatred—any action that begins in the mind and then moves towards destruction. The worst of those actions is killing, but harmful intent could also include verbal actions.
Three Nonvirtuous Actions of Mind The third one is wrong view[ignorance癡], which arises from bewilderment. Bewilderment means that we do not see any relationship between cause and effect in our actions. That wrong view leads to many other kinds of wrong views, such as thinking that the dharma is not true, or that the Buddha never existed, and so on. So these three nonvirtuous actions of mind—covetousness, harmful intent, and wrong view—lay the foundation.
Three Nonvirtuous Actions of Body Next we have migewa of body. The first nonvirtuous act of body is killing. Here, the act is based on having the intention of killing. If one kills accidentally, obviously there is karmic cause and condition; but in this instance one plans to kill, one plans to do this kind of severe damage. It is very precise: one wants to kill another sentient being, one does it intentionally, and there is no mistake. Also, it is said that the person has to die/suffer if he/she does that kind of act.
Three Nonvirtuous Actions of Body The second migewa of body is stealing, taking others' possessions and wealth. Again, one does it intentionally. Here, MiphamRinpoche gives some examples: if you steal something from a stupa, from whom have you stolen? You have stolen from the Buddha. If you take something—the text says "a treasure," but it includes anything that is just lying around and you're not sure to whom it belongs— you are stealing from the king or the leader of that place. If you steal from the dead—you take their watch or something—then from whom are you taking it? You're taking it from the people in that area, or from students of the Buddha, or from the Buddha.
Three Nonvirtuous Actions of Body The next one is translated as sexual misconduct. The list of misconducts is very extensive. There's a long list of exactly how far away you have to be, and so on. Obviously, some people are monks or nuns, and some people are married or are in some kind of relationship, but overall there is a sense of realizing what is and is not appropriate and realizing whether one is hurting others or hurting a situation through one's actions.
Four Nonvirtuous Actions of Speech Then we have the migewa of speech. The first one is lying. This means knowingly speaking falsely. The second is divisive speech. This involves trying, by speech, to create disharmony between, or to separate individuals who are in accord, who are in harmony. It's an enactment of the mind of harmful intent. But now harmful intent has manifested in our speech and created disharmony, and maybe even killing.
Four Nonvirtuous Actions of Speech The third migewa of speech is harsh words, which is speaking unpleasant or bad words that are unacceptable or that do not rest well in another's heart. This is not a case of giving advice to someone who has done wrong. Rather, with an intent based on anger or some other negative emotion, one goes ahead and says something that brings uneasiness or unpleasantness to the mind of another being.
Four Nonvirtuous Actions of Speech The fourth is senseless speech. Sometimes this is translated as "gossip." But it's not just gossip; it's aimless speech, too. Because one is unable to control one's kleshas煩悩or one's discursiveness and so forth, words just come tumbling out. Again, here the mind is motivated by the negative emotion.
CULTIVATING VIRTUE In cultivating virtue, there is a sense of balance. Our mind is no longer afflicted by or inundated淹沒 with discursiveness and negativity. There's a naturalness in the mind. If we see another person being hurt, our response would be compassion, not laughter. If someone is doing well, or has something, we feel a sense of joy. Instead of feeling jealous, we celebrate their good fortune. At this stage, you achieve immeasurable mind.
Basic Terms 5 aggregates (skandhas) 4 elements 6 sense organs, 6 sense objects, 6 sense consciousness 12 links of causation (nidāna) 4 noble truths 8 fold path 6 paramitas 4 persuasions 3 / 5 vehicles 10 realms
Basic Terms 10 Chinese schools Life story of the Buddha Buddhist History in India Buddhist History in China Practice
The Ten Schools of Chinese Buddhism: 1. Reality School or Kosa School or Abhidharma School.2. Satysiddhi School or Cheng-se School. 3. Three Sastra School or San-lun School.4. The Lotus School or T'ien-t'ai School 5. The Garland School or Hua-yen School or Avatamsaka School. 6. Intuitive School or Ch'an School or Dhyana School.7. Discipline School or Lu School or Vinaya School. 8. Esoteric School or Mi School or Mantra School.9. Dharmalaksana School or Wei-Shi School or Fa-siang School.10. Pure-land School or Sukhavati School or Ching-t'u School. 中国的佛教共分十宗，分别是：俱舍宗、成实宗、三论宗、天台宗、华严宗、唯识宗、律宗、禅宗、净土宗、密宗。
The following topics are for the upcoming Saturday Meditation Class: June 4 - Ten Virtuous Actions by Brandilee June 11 to the end of August - Heart Sutra by Ven. Shengguang Shi (1st hour) June 11 - Ten realms presented by Winnie Tsang (2nd hour) June 18 - 3/5 Vehicles by Moshay Allen June 25 - Pure Land School by Jimmy Li July 2 - Esoteric School by Edward Malek July 9 - Chan School by Kitty Cheung July 16 - Satysiddhi School by Waifun Lai
Questions and Comments 討論 www.ChamShanTemple.org www.shengguangshi.blogspot.com ShengguangShi@hotmail.com Shengguang Shi 釋聖光 Tom Cheung 張相棠 Kam Cheung 張仁勤 Dennis Yap 葉普智