Reply To: How can vedana paccaya phassa?

[email protected]

Hi Lal, about your 2017 post on Vedanta. You gave an example “ A good example is a pain one feels when sitting cross-legged at meditation retreats. Just by saying “I feel this vēdanā” will not of any use. That vēdanā can be removed by shifting one’s posture. I have seen some instructors, advised people, to just bear the pain saying that it will go away. It may go away because the nerves may become numb. That is not good in the long term “

When a meditators starts meditating, it’s possible that the body is not used to staying still, and as a result experience all sorts of discomfort. If the person reacts to every discomfort by shifting position, that might be disruptive to him/herself and in a class might disrupt others (noise created ) during posture changing. Finally the most comfortable position is lying flat on the floor, which is not the ideal position to meditate unless the aim is to sleep. Based on your example above and from your experience, do you suggest meditators should change positions quickly without perseverance? how would you advise meditators experiencing pain/discomfort ?
My understanding is that, as a practitioner, i would try to observe the pain objectively, trying to investigate that the pain is not I, not mine, not self. It exist as consequence of a physical body, the leg will be numb but it’s not going to be paralysed. I would continue meditating (perservere), if however after a period of time, if it becomes unbearable, I would then switch positions or make minor adjustments to try to relax. Ultimately, meditation should be comfortable, but being too comfortable might lead to sleepiness.

I am really glad that I found this website, which have given me lots of insight into my practice, and the difference between self view and self perception was excellently discussed.