The Four Foundations of Mindfulness in Plain English

Bhante Henepola Gunaratana

Language: English

Pages: 192

ISBN: 1614290385

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

In simple and straightforward language, Bhante Gunaratana shares the Buddha's teachings on mindfulness and how we can use these principles to improve our daily lives, deepen our mindfulness, and move closer to our spiritual goals.

Based on the classic Satipatthana Sutta, one of the most succinct yet rich explanations of meditation, Bhante's presentation is nonetheless thoroughly modern. The Satipatthana Sutta has become the basis of all mindfulness meditation, and Bhante unveils it to the reader in his trademark "plain English" style.

Contemplating the Four Foundations of Mindfulness--mindfulness of the body, of feelings, of the mind, and of phenomena themselves--is recommended for all practitioners. Newcomers will find The Four Foundations of Mindfulness in Plain English lays a strong groundwork for mindfulness practice and gives them all they need to get started right away, and old hands will find rich subtleties and insights to help consolidate and clarify what they may have begun to see for themselves. People at every state of the spiritual path will benefit from reading this book.

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symbol of wisdom. Just as the elephant protects his vulnerable neck from the attack of a lion by using his huge body, the Buddha maintained his mindfulness by using clear comprehension, morality, concentration, wisdom, liberation, and knowledge of liberation—the qualities of his body of enlightenment. The Buddha advised us to follow his example and engage in all our activities with mindfulness and clear comprehension. We have to eat, drink, wear clothes, and exercise to stay healthy. We need

sleep and shelter. But we use clear comprehension to guard against attachment to these necessities and to avoid greed, hatred, delusion, competition, jealousy, and pride. For instance, some people wear clothes to show off their wealth or beauty, which encourages pride and attachment to the notion of self. By contrast, when they get dressed, monks and nuns train themselves to think, “I wear these clothes to protect this body from cold, heat, mosquitoes, wind, and sun, and to cover my nakedness.”

unwrinkled. Of course, the color that is considered beautiful changes depending on where we live! Skin is also useful. We experience hardness, softness, roughness, and smoothness because of touch information we receive through the skin. Skin also regulates body temperature. When we are hot, the skin expands, and the body cools itself through perspiration that pours through the skin. Skin-to-skin contact is so important to newborn babies that they can die if they are not touched. But the skin is

my destination” (tr. Bhikkhu Bodhi). Once-returner. Next, mindfulness helps us to be more and more aware of each instant of change in the five aggregates. As a result, the most obvious or gross part of the next two fetters, craving for sensory experience and hatred, are destroyed. We become a “once-returner.” This term means that we will take rebirth in the human realm at most one more time before we achieve enlightenment. Non-returner. At the third stage, our deep concentration meditation

help, then work with the pain: try making the sensation of pain your object of meditation. Observe the sensation and watch how it changes over time. If questions arise, ask someone with more experience. Remind yourself that millions of people have used this practice to attain clarity and peace of mind. Keep practicing with patience. 2: Four Postures For one entire night, Venerable Ananda practiced the Four Foundations of Mindfulness. Because his mindfulness was pure, sharp, and

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